SSPX: Priest Resigns – Is Former UK Superior Plotting Trouble Ahead?

SSPX: Priest Resigns – Is Former UK Superior Plotting Trouble Ahead?

Translation of text of the above interview follows…

Introduction

I am Father Paul Morgan, ordained by Bishop Lefebvre at Ecône in 1988. After that, I was 4 years in the district house in London as an assistant. Following this, I was the 1st Superior of the Society of St. Pius X in the Philippines for 4 years, until 1996. Then 2 years as a school principal at St Mary’s School in England and then 5 years as a prior at Post Falls in Idaho, USA. And then 12 years as district superior of Great Britain, Ireland and Scandinavia, until 2015. Then sabbatical year at Montgardin, which I had asked for. And then 2016-2017, Prior in Vancouver, Canada.

Current situation…

Right now, I am outside the Society, since I resigned on August 9 of this year [2017] because of the marriage affair.

The Marriage Affair…

It seemed to me, it always seems to me, that it is an essential compromise to accept the principle that priests representing modern dioceses come to us, in the bastions of Tradition, to receive the promises of the bride and groom. Even if in practice we are a little restricted in such things, we have accepted the principle. And that’s why, in concrete terms, I wrote my letter of resignation.

Timing of resignation…

I think there were many of us, quite a few priests and superiors themselves, who had reacted against the new way of doing things, even before the 2012 chapter. There were many of us in Albano in 2011 to say to Bishop Fellay, very respectfully, that these steps should not be continued in order to reach an agreement with modernist Rome. So, we have already done a great deal in the Society, among ourselves, with the superiors to denounce and oppose these approaches. For example, in 2012, the district of Great Britain was ready, in its entirety, to break away if they made a false agreement with modernist Rome. So it is not just this year that we have begun to react, but we have already for years.

Why no public reaction…

I think the manifesto, the statement of the 7 deans and superiors of friendly communities in France, was very, very well put. So publicly, that was already explained. And I can also say that I have done things in order and according to the rules, by sending a manifesto signed by several priests from Canada to Bishop Fellay and to Menzingen, explaining quite simply, the serious problems with these new directives for receiving marriage vows. So right away we talked about it on the Internet, so it became public, etc.. So, I chose to do things that way. Now, I speak more publicly, since I’ve had a little time to organize myself – and we left Canada with a suitcase in our hands, not knowing where to go because we never thought of being alone, on the outside like that.

What prospects for the 2018 General Chapter?

Unfortunately, I do not have much hope in the general chapter next year. It seems to me that with the change of minds that has been taking place for several years now – so that we think that Rome is now kind, Rome loves us, we can make an agreement or do more good saying inside the Church, as if we were outside the Church until now, it’s unbelievable, isn’t it – so I don’t have much hope. And we can see that good priests like the 7 deans, for example, who have made a very good document – and a special hello to Father de la Rocque in exile in the Philippines, a country that I like very much but which is still in exile – we see what happens to priests who denounce problems respectfully and rightly: we punish them! So I think the superiors in the chapter will simply do what Menzingen tells them to do.

What about your apostolate?

At the moment, I have no official apostolate. I am in contact with a lot of priests, in France and abroad, as well as with the faithful, encouraging and supporting them. Aslo with priests who have left [the SSPX] already a few months or a few years ago, for reasons that are in the end quite similar.

It is very encouraging to see the strong religious communities in France, religious men and women. I am in contact with them but I understand that this is a difficult situation for these communities, which may be at risk of sanctions if they show themselves too publicly in agreement with priests like myself.

Nevertheless, we celebrate Mass, we pray, we visit confreres, we have been able to preach a retreat already, we have made visits on the right and on the left. I get a lot of invitations from other countries to come and help. But at the moment, for rather practical matters we have to organise ourselves before embarking on any future activities. But I think, it seems to me that in June-July 2018, we are going to shoot into action. I think there will be more positive reactions in the coming year.

In connection with the bishops consecrated by Bishop Williamson?

Yes, if need be, of course, since we need bishops for Sacred orders and confirmations. Consecrating bishops in this emergency, as Archishop Lefebvre himself had said, can be repeated. This is not something reserved exclusively for Archbishop Lefebvre. And yes, we are quite willing to collaborate with the faithful, with faithful Catholics.

In conclusion…

I conclude by saying that we always have hope in the Good Lord. I think of Archbishop Lefebvre who was alone. He resigned some the Holy Ghost Fathers so as not to have any part in the destruction of his congregation. So priests like him and certainly many others, did this for important reasons. Let us try to make contacts, to gather together in order to help other priests who, for the moment, remain within the Society, hoping to organize something to help them as also [to help] the sound faithful. There’s a lot of work to be done. We have hope.

And then, finally, Our Lady of Fatima spoke about diabolic disorientations. It seems to me that what is happening here is an example, right here in 2017, [an example] of this confusion of mind. So, as Archbishop Lefebvre said, we must remain faithfully, we must keep the principles of the fight for the faith, the good fight and then, if we have to suffer by doing this, God’s Holy will must be done.   Source

Statement from Canada on Fr Morgan’s departure from the SSPX here 

Comment: 

What on earth does “shoot into action” [in June-July, 2018] mean?  Is Fr Morgan intent on acting to divide, further, the SSPX faithful? 

This is very disappointing coming from a former Superior of the SSPX GB district.  Very disappointing indeed. 

I could write a book about Fr Morgan and it would be less than flattering but I would ask all bloggers who choose to comment on this subject to be restrained and stick to the issues.  Please avoid any temptation to personal criticism of Father Morgan, or citing examples of what we considered to be lack of pastoral care affecting the Scottish faithful during his years as Superior in the UK;  instead, stick to the facts relating to his decision to resign from the Society, apparently unaware that he is now part and parcel of the very diabolical disorientation to which he refers in the above interview. 

Might his reference to “shooting into action” next summer be interpreted as a “plans afoot” to further divide the Society or is there another more innocent explanation? 

Comments (113)

  • gandalfolorin

    Editor:

    On the US side of the Atlantic, I have composed three papers up to now regarding the “resistance.” I have called them throughout “Against the Rebellious.” Now in response to Father Morgan, I have composed the following which I have also posted to my Facebook group by the same name, as well as to another Catholic list I belong to.

    GandalfOlorin

    Against the Rebellious IV

    Regarding the Public Statement of
    Fr. Paul Morgan
    Former District Superior of Great Britain

    As it has been published on the Catholic Truth blog (https://catholictruthblog.com/2017/12/29/sspx-priest-resigns-is-former-uk-superior-plotting-trouble-ahead/), Fr. Paul Morgan has resigned from the Society of St. Pius X. Father Morgan has made the following public statement which I transcribe here from the Catholic Truth blog. Following Father Morgan’s points (which I number for convenience), I have inserted my responses.

    1. Introduction
    I am Father Paul Morgan, ordained by Bishop Lefebvre at Ecône in 1988. After that, I was 4 years in the district house in London as an assistant. Following this, I was the 1st Superior of the Society of St. Pius X in the Philippines for 4 years, until 1996. Then 2 years as a school principal at St Mary’s School in England and then 5 years as a prior at Post Falls in Idaho, USA. And then 12 years as district superior of Great Britain, Ireland and Scandinavia, until 2015. Then sabbatical year at Montgardin, which I had asked for. And then 2016-2017, Prior in Vancouver, Canada.

    Response:

    Father Morgan may be merely explaining who he is by itemizing his resume for us. On the other hand, we may be justified in suspecting that he is setting the stage for what he says hereafter by listing his accomplishments within the SSPX as if these indicate that he continues to be trustworthy upon leaving the SSPX. This is not a logical conclusion. Just because he did things that bore fruit when he was a Society priest does not mean that he can continue to do such things outside the Society. He was ordained to be a Society priest, not an “independent” priest. There is no canonical status for “independent” priests in the Church, which was one big reason His Grace the Archbishop founded the SSPX.

    2. Current situation…

    Right now, I am outside the Society, since I resigned on August 9 of this year [2017] because of the marriage affair.

    The Marriage Affair…

    It seemed to me, it always seems to me, that it is an essential compromise to accept the principle that priests representing modern dioceses come to us, in the bastions of Tradition, to receive the promises of the bride and groom. Even if in practice we are a little restricted in such things, we have accepted the principle. And that’s why, in concrete terms, I wrote my letter of resignation.

    Response:

    Father Morgan here refers to the grant by Pope Francis to the Society that marriages conducted by Society priests can be witnessed by diocesan clergy. When diocesan clergy are not available, the Society priests are given permission to witness the vows of the couple using ordinary jurisdiction. In other words, the marriages can be regularized not only according to the spirit of the law, which the Society has always done, but now according to the letter of the law. There was no compromise in doctrine asked in exchange for this permission. It can have a good effect in putting at ease those hesitant about the use of extraordinary jurisdiction. Without any evidence, Father Morgan, like the other rebellious before him, sees in the very presence of a diocesan priest a compromise with modernism. This is nothing but a rubbish conclusion. In reality, what diocese is going to have a priest available to do this on a regular basis? You can probably count them on one hand. (What is the average age of parish priests in France? Eighty-five?) So labeling this permission of the pope as a compromise, Father Morgan uses this as his excuse for leaving the Society he was ordained for.

    3. Timing of resignation…

    I think there were many of us, quite a few priests and superiors themselves, who had reacted against the new way of doing things, even before the 2012 chapter. There were many of us in Albano in 2011 to say to Bishop Fellay, very respectfully, that these steps should not be continued in order to reach an agreement with modernist Rome. So, we have already done a great deal in the Society, among ourselves, with the superiors to denounce and oppose these approaches. For example, in 2012, the district of Great Britain was ready, in its entirety, to break away if they made a false agreement with modernist Rome. So it is not just this year that we have begun to react, but we have already for years.

    Response:

    We remember, of course, the rebellious clerics were causing trouble in various parts of the SSPX till they resigned or were expelled. It is an exaggeration, to put it kindly, to believe, as Father Morgan states, that these priests and superiors were ever that many. They were not. Consider that the Society has over 600 priests now—well over 500 at the time of the Bp. Williamson fiasco and the rebellion of those who joined him. There were, in reality, some few adherents of Bp. Williamson, some in one country, some in another; some on one continent, some on another. Remember, Bp. Williamson had a wide influence in having been rector of the American seminary for many years, in having published newsletters with a wide readership from that seminary, in having been assigned afterward to the seminary of Argentina, in having contacts in Britain even before he was “confined” to the district house in London, in having contacts in France and elsewhere. “We have already done a great deal in the Society, with the superiors to denounce and oppose these approaches.” So in other words, he and his like-minded friends had already caused trouble by dissenting over something that was not real even before they openly rebelled. Such was the influence of Bp. Williamson.

    As for the entire district of Great Britain being ready to leave the Society in 2012, there are others more knowledgeable than I who say otherwise. (See the comments at the link above.) Even on the face of it, it seems a large exaggeration of fact to say that all the SSPX clergy and religious in Great Britain agreed with Father Morgan and had decided to leave in the event of a “false agreement.” So we are to believe that all the British Society priests believed in this fairytale of a “false agreement”?

    4. Why no public reaction…

    I think the manifesto, the statement of the 7 deans and superiors of friendly communities in France, was very, very well put. So publicly, that was already explained. And I can also say that I have done things in order and according to the rules, by sending a manifesto signed by several priests from Canada to Bishop Fellay and to Menzingen, explaining quite simply, the serious problems with these new directives for receiving marriage vows. So right away we talked about it on the Internet, so it became public, etc.. So, I chose to do things that way. Now, I speak more publicly, since I’ve had a little time to organize myself – and we left Canada with a suitcase in our hands, not knowing where to go because we never thought of being alone, on the outside like that.

    Response:

    Are we supposed to shed a sympathetic tear that Father Morgan decided on his own to leave the Society he was engaged to remain in and to obey by an engagement he had made before his superior and before God in the Blessed Sacrament? No, there can be no sympathy for this nonsense. Father put himself in this situation by believing in fairytales, and he alone can pull himself out of that delusion and return to reality—something his superiors consistently encouraged him to do. Father’s having, like the equally bemused French religious communities, sent a “manifesto” to Menzingen is supposed to assure us he had taken the necessary canonical steps before removing himself from a bad situation. Not so. When has it ever been the proper canonical step to send any sort of “manifesto” to one’s superior? It was, in effect, an ultimatum: ie. “Either you stop, or I’m leaving.” What is the superior to respond to that kind of prattle? He can charitably reiterate the long-standing reasons why the fairytale fears are not real. But someone in that state of delusion is not likely to listen to logical arguments, and Father Morgan was no exception.

    5. What prospects for the 2018 General Chapter?

    Unfortunately, I do not have much hope in the general chapter next year. It seems to me that with the change of minds that has been taking place for several years now – so that we think that Rome is now kind, Rome loves us, we can make an agreement or do more good saying inside the Church, as if we were outside the Church until now, it’s unbelievable, isn’t it – so I don’t have much hope. And we can see that good priests like the 7 deans, for example, who have made a very good document – and a special hello to Father de la Rocque in exile in the Philippines, a country that I like very much but which is still in exile – we see what happens to priests who denounce problems respectfully and rightly: we punish them! So I think the superiors in the chapter will simply do what Menzingen tells them to do.

    Response:

    “We think that Rome is now kind, Rome loves us, we can make an agreement or do more good staying inside the Church, as if we were outside the Church until now…” So like all the rest of the rebellious clerics, Father Morgan now uses a straw man argument and beats that to death, as others have since Bp. Williamson first mouthed these pieces of offal. There is no such attitude by the Society’s hierarchy as Father characterizes here. And so he is distrusting the General Chapter, as he does the Society itself, based on a lying fable exploited by those who have left the SSPX before him. Like the communists always said, if a lie is repeated often enough, it becomes the truth. But this is not quite so. In reality, if a lie is repeated often enough it is believed by those who know no better as well as by those who should know better. As I have said in my previous papers on this subject, this is the same lying trash that was used by the Nine when they left the Society in 1983. I well remember, since I was in Saint Mary’s at that time, when the Archbishop came to explain to us what had happened. Unfortunately, many today are either too new to Tradition or too young to remember, and do not recognize this same scenario being played out again.

    6. What about your apostolate?

    At the moment, I have no official apostolate. I am in contact with a lot of priests, in France and abroad, as well as with the faithful, encouraging and supporting them. Aslo with priests who have left [the SSPX] already a few months or a few years ago, for reasons that are in the end quite similar.

    It is very encouraging to see the strong religious communities in France, religious men and women. I am in contact with them but I understand that this is a difficult situation for these communities, which may be at risk of sanctions if they show themselves too publicly in agreement with priests like myself.

    Nevertheless, we celebrate Mass, we pray, we visit confreres, we have been able to preach a retreat already, we have made visits on the right and on the left. I get a lot of invitations from other countries to come and help. But at the moment, for rather practical matters we have to organise ourselves before embarking on any future activities. But I think, it seems to me that in June-July 2018, we are going to shoot into action. I think there will be more positive reactions in the coming year.

    Response:

    Father Morgan has “no official apostolate.” Well of course he doesn’t. He is now a “vagus”—a priest without a mandate or a permission to offer the sacraments. Canon Law does not allow for this kind of priest, and we can note that Archbishop Lefebvre did not want this for his Society even though he knew his priests would have to invoke extraordinary jurisdiction. In other words, Father Morgan has taken himself out of the correct situation in which he was with the Society and made himself irregular in fact, not merely in theory. This is true of all the rebellious clerics.

    “I am in contact with a lot of priests…as well as with the faithful, encouraging and supporting them. Also with priests who have left [the SSPX] already a few months or a few years ago, for reasons that are in the end quite similar.” So in other words, Father is joining with the ranks of the rebellious and stirring up trouble with the faithful so that he “helps” them into the same errors he has embraced.

    “But I think, it seems to me that in June-July 2018, we are going to shoot into action. I think there will be more positive reactions in the coming year.” Well this is rather ominous. To those who are unfamiliar with the rebellious, this would seem an innocuous announcement of future work. To those of us who have been watching these people, however, it would seem much more threatening. Particularly “shoot into action” seems to predict some kind of specific acts against the interests of the SSPX occurring next summer.

    7. In connection with the bishops consecrated by Bishop Williamson?

    Yes, if need be, of course, since we need bishops for Sacred orders and confirmations. Consecrating bishops in this emergency, as Archishop Lefebvre himself had said, can be repeated. This is not something reserved exclusively for Archbishop Lefebvre. And yes, we are quite willing to collaborate with the faithful, with faithful Catholics.

    Response:

    “Consecrating bishops in this emergency…” But there is no urgent necessity such as that which existed in 1988 when His Grace and Bishop De Castro-Mayer found it necessary to save the priesthood and the sacraments. Now there are still three bishops within the Society who have proven capable, even though the apostolate is far-flung, to fulfill the mandate given them by the Archbishop: to be auxiliaries to the Superior General and to confer the sacraments, especially Holy Orders. If one of them should die or become incapable of performing his duties, then it would be a case of necessity and there would be a legitimate reason to consecrate another bishop for the Society.

    Besides acting only in a genuine necessity, the one who consecrates must apply first to the Holy See for permission, even if it can be expected that the pope would refuse for spurious reasons. But this must be done for the simple reason that we must always act as Catholics, especially when others within the Church do not. This is what every Catholic bishop has always done, and this is what Archbishop Lefebvre did as well, even though he knew the pope was a rabid liberal. It was only when the Holy See tried to stymie the choice of bishop candidates that the Archbishop went ahead with the ceremony without the actual permission. To act in any other way is to behave as a schismatic, since to consecrate without seeking the pope’s permission is to act as if there were no pope to ask. If this is how Bp. Williamson acted, and that is the definite impression one has from everything that has been said by him, then he has become the sedevacantist that he formerly denounced.

    8. In conclusion…

    I conclude by saying that we always have hope in the Good Lord. I think of Archbishop Lefebvre who was alone. He resigned some the Holy Ghost Fathers so as not to have any part in the destruction of his congregation. So priests like him and certainly many others, did this for important reasons. Let us try to make contacts, to gather together in order to help other priests who, for the moment, remain within the Society, hoping to organize something to help them as also [to help] the sound faithful. There’s a lot of work to be done. We have hope.

    And then, finally, Our Lady of Fatima spoke about diabolic disorientations. It seems to me that what is happening here is an example, right here in 2017, [an example] of this confusion of mind. So, as Archbishop Lefebvre said, we must remain faithfully, we must keep the principles of the fight for the faith, the good fight and then, if we have to suffer by doing this, God’s Holy will must be done.

    Response:

    Those who leave the SSPX in this manner are often wont to claim they are behaving just as the Archbishop did, and following exactly what the Archbishop taught. So Luther claimed that he was following Christ Our Lord and Rome was not. But the proof, as the saying has it, is in the pudding. Where are the horrible agreements with Rome that were prophesied several years ago? Where are the liberal innovations and accommodations to the Novus Ordo? Where is there cooperation in sacris between the SSPX and the local ordinary? The answer is now as it has always been: Nowhere. All of these so-called predictions have proved to be empty hot air and so much pixilated ink.

    And yes, Our Lady at Fatima foretold of a diabolic disorientation. But very plainly that prophecy referred to the entire Church, not to one part of the Church like the Society. Since the Third Part of the Secret was never truly revealed, we know only what has been explained publicly up to now. We know that the secret involved Rome and the persecution of the Church, and probably a betrayal of the faith by the highest ranks of the hierarchy (since Sr. Lucia admitted as much). We also know that nothing the Society has done remotely resembles such a diabolic disorientation. Rather, the Society has maintained what has been handed down.

    We also know, harking back to the 1500s, Our Lady at Quito foretold that a prelate would arise in the latter 20th century to save the Mass and the priesthood. Since that century is behind us, we can see with historical eyes that this prophecy can have referred only to our dear Monsignor Lefebvre and to no one else. It is therefore the work that he left to carry on that mission, i.e., the Society of St. Pius X, which must carry on that work. Those who leave their appointed places to carry out their own will in preference to the Society’s mission are indeed both outside the mission of the Society as well as (in the case of Bp. Williamson) in at least material schism and therefore outside the Church.

    Enough of this endless tripe from the rebellious clerics! If we want better popes, we must pray and sacrifice for that end. And if we are prelates of the Church, we must continue to go to Rome when Divine Providence indicates in order to remind the Vicar of Christ of his duty. Meantime, let Catholics adhere to the Society of St. Pius X and they will find the unchanged and unchanging faith faithfully handed down. Archbishop Lefebvre, pray for us!

    January 1, 2018 at 11:26 pm
    • Margaret USA

      Gandalf,

      I’d love to see all four of your papers. Could you please email them to our beloved Editor and she can email them to me?

      Thank you! Wishing you and yours a Happy New Year.

      Regards,

      Margaret 🇺🇸

      January 2, 2018 at 12:44 am
  • gandalfolorin

    Margaret,

    Thank you for the kind words. I have my papers posted to a Facebook group which you are free to join if you wish. I certainly can email the papers to the editor also.

    Gandalf

    January 2, 2018 at 1:11 am
    • Margaret USA

      Gandalf,

      I’m not on Facebook or Twitter. That’s why I suggested sending them to Madame Editor and she can forward them to me.

      Hope you had a Happy New Year!

      Regards,

      Margaret 🇺🇸

      January 2, 2018 at 1:33 am
      • editor

        Margaret,

        Gandalf has now kindly emailed his papers to me, and I have forwarded them to you this morning – if anyone else would like to read them, let me know and I will send them on to you.

        January 2, 2018 at 9:47 am
    • Athanasius

      Gandalf

      A man after my own heart, I agree with every word you’ve written. Thank you for posting your response here on this blog and for your fidelity to the SSPX. God bless you.

      January 2, 2018 at 10:24 am
      • gandalfolorin

        Athanasius,

        Thank you for your kind words. I pray that my papers will help a few souls find the truth. Too many souls are lost nowadays because no one will take the time to explain it to them. I hope my poor work will do some good. Keep this intention in your prayers.

        Gandalf

        January 3, 2018 at 7:25 am
      • Athanasius

        Gandalf

        You may be assured of my prayers for the success of your efforts. You do your duty as a Catholic, and that is to tell people the truth. More power to your pen!

        January 3, 2018 at 11:45 am
  • WurdeSmythe

    This is so, so sad.

    The resistance people talk of the problems in the SSPX that are about to happen or are going to happen or that are just over the horizon, and then the bad events never come to pass.

    January 3, 2018 at 7:54 pm
    • Athanasius

      WurdeSmythe

      I completely agree with you. They have been predicting the big “sell out” of the SSPX since 2011, yet here we are in 2018 and everything is as it always has been. Poor deluded people!

      January 3, 2018 at 10:05 pm
  • RCAVictor

    Speaking of the resistance-to-nothing, several years ago (2012) they published a document called “Primary Sources for Studying the Crisis in the SSPX.” This PDF was sent to me by a friend who, at that point, was sympathetic to them. I read it through carefully, made highlights and comments, and pointed out to him that this document actually proved the complete opposite of their claim that Bishop Fellay was “selling out”!

    No further proof of twisted minds and cold hearts is needed, IMHO.

    January 3, 2018 at 9:16 pm
    • editor

      I had an email from a (non-Catholic) friend the other day in which she included a statement from one of these “poor deluded people”, writing about the “crisis in the SSPX”. I replied to let her know that there IS no crisis in the SSPX.

      This nonsensical claim needs to be called out every time it is trotted out, if you get my drift, as the TV weatherman said when he announced there was going to be a snowstorm… (get it? “did you get my drift…”? Oh, never mind then… 😀 )

      January 3, 2018 at 10:26 pm
      • RCAVictor

        Editor,

        I must say, that pun was a little flaky….

        January 4, 2018 at 2:41 am
      • editor

        RCA Victor,

        Painful! I did laugh, though!

        January 4, 2018 at 10:11 pm
  • gabriel syme

    in 2012, the district of Great Britain was ready, in its entirety, to break away

    What rot this statement is.

    We can clearly see it is erroneous from the fact Fr Morgan has made his video in the French language: there is no English-speaking constituency for him (+Williamson has already hoovered up the handful of UK resistance types and “cornered the market”).

    January 4, 2018 at 12:56 pm
    • editor

      Gabriel Syme,

      Quite possibly, Fr Morgan is here reflecting the possible truth that he was working behind the scenes to recruit for the resistance-to-nothing movement in its beginnings, and perhaps – in all the confusion at the time – making a little headway. I remember hearing some statements that caused me concern at the time, in sermons, but, thankfully, calm was restored and the danger passed. So, just as every heresy has a grain of truth therein, so, here, Fr Morgan may be revealing something of the machinations going on in London way back then.

      January 4, 2018 at 10:14 pm

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