Worse Than a Black Mass?

Wednesday, September 24, AD 2014

For those who kneel beside us
At altars not Thine own,
Who lack the lights that guide us,
Lord, let their faith atone!

Rudyard Kipling, Hymn Before Action

 

Father Paul Nicholson engages in some silliness on stilts:

 

The imagery that is being circulated of the confrontation with the diabolical at the black mass in Oklahoma city is truly moving. But there is something worse than a black mass. It is the abuse of God’s Mercy.

I have seen the images of the Society of +Marcel Lefevbre in a full demonstration against the black mass that took place on September 21, 2014. They look every bit Catholic … yet they are not submissive to the Vicar of Christ. They are Catholic protestants.
And while they decry the attack on Christ in the black mass, do they not realize that they are compounding the wound in the Heart of Christ, by attacking the Body of Christ? How can any Catholic not feel indignant as he sees this tragedy in front of him.

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5 Responses to Worse Than a Black Mass?

  • Fr. Nicholson. Another Company man…..on stilts wearing a clown mask.

    I have participated in public pray crusades in front of theaters and P.P..
    One of the inspiring facets of these rallies is the ecumenical gathering.
    While we prayed the Holy Rosary the protestants never balked. They remained committed to the cause at hand. To make reparations for the blasphemy being thrown at Our Lord Jesus Christ.
    At one rally, in Madison WI., the total of protestant faithful out numbered the Catholics by 5 to 1.

    The battlegrounds are growing.

    The Church Militant is not a cowardly militia, rather a force that can never be defeated. This confidence should be evident in the public square. Unfortunately it isn’t.

  • So how can an abuse of God’s mercy be worse that a black mass? From Fr. Nicholson’s article: “By resisting the call of grace to be converted and return to the Church, to remain intransigent, and stubborn to the workings of grace, the Society of +Marcel attack the Mercy of God!”

    But doesn’t the Satanist “resist the call of grace to be converted, to remain intransigent, and stubborn to the workings of grace, and so attacks the Mercy of God” in a particularly virulent manner? Aside from the issue of proportionality between a traditionalist schismatic Catholic and a Satanist, this looks like circular logic.

    Even worse, it goes against the Gospel – see Mark 9:40. “But Jesus said, “Do not hinder him, for there is no one who will perform a miracle in My name, and be able soon afterward to speak evil of Me. For he who is not against us is for us. For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.”

    I note that most of Fr. Nicholson’s faithful readers are taking him to task on this topic in his comments section.

  • Donald,

    You are more than generous and merciful in calling this ‘silliness’. We can/should expect far more ‘well-reasoned’ and ‘moderate’ blogs or posts from Catholic priests. Priests are ‘ministers of reconciliation and communion’. This does not mean they cannot or should not give ‘the hard saying’, ‘the prophetic critique’ when it is needed and called for, but as ‘ministers of reconciliation and communion’ they are called to ‘speak the truth with love’-little of which that I see in this segment of his rant. He is called to seek the ‘communion of the Church centered in the Eucharist’ at all times. His ‘garbage’ in the above statement falls far from that.

    What is more amazing, is he writes this precisely when two different moments and events in the Church are going on. First, the Church in America is facing a new challenge from-Satanists (no matter how soft they pedal their product). We saw it in Boston and now in Kansas. This is not a phenomenon that is going away.

    The second, moment and event is the resuming (hopefully) of talks between Bishop Fellay, the Society of Pius X and Cardinal Mueller and the Congregation for the Faith. The fact that they met and are talking is a good sign, if not all that we desire etc.

    To liken brothers and sisters in Christ, even if they are not in complete and total communion with the Church [this could apply to other groupings which call themselves Catholic, never mind the various Orthodox and Protestant bodies. All who are baptized are brothers and sisters in the Lord, but in varying degrees do not share in full communion] with Satanists is not simply beyond the pale. It is absolutely contradictory to the Second Vatican Council which I presume father, believes he is protecting.

    Enough of the emotional thinking, the emotional vomit, father.

  • I applaud them for standing up for their beliefs. I was there and saw only a great group of Christians protesting against evil. Several Evangelicals were present as well Are we going to condemn them as well?
    Is time to stop the name calling and unite in the fight and abandon the timidity and conciliatory policies espoused by the Hierarchy,time to speak from the pulpit and denounce the threats to our religion.
    “THE CATHOLICS OF TODAY ARE NO LONGER MARTYRS THEY ARE WARRIORS AND AS SUCH SHOULD FIGHT THE FORCES OF LUCIFER THAT MEAN TO DESTROY OUR FAITH”

  • Father Paul Nicholson is in error. The Society of Saint Pius X is NOT in schism. This is from Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos. Father Paul Nicholson no longer accepts comments on his blog about this post. I wonder why?

    The SSPX is in an “irregular status”. They don’t like Vatican II – at all. Well, I don’t like some of it, either (Muslims worship the same God? Really?)

    The SSPX claims that the Novus Ordo Mass is invalid. I disagree with the SSPX. This does not make them heretical or schismatic. Protestants are heretics (even though I have know Protestants who are wonderful Christians). Orthodox are in schism (even though my Orthodox neighbors are wonderful Christians).

    As for obedience to the Pope – I recall St. Catherine of Siena’s letter to the Pope of her time.

Res & Explicatio for A.D. 3-11-2009

Wednesday, March 11, AD 2009

Salvete AC readers!

Here are today’s Top Picks in the Catholic world:

1.  There are massive leaks all over the Catholic blogosphere concerning a Papal Letter in regards to the SSPX.  Pope Benedict XVI will release a statement expressing his disenchantment of the reaction among Catholics over the lifting of the excommunications of SSPX.  His Holiness also explains that he will connect the Ecclesia Dei commission to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.  He also states clearly that the Church is not frozen in 1962, so the SSPX will need to embrace Vatican II.  In addition Vatican II also “brings with it the the whole doctrinal history of the Church”, ie, the Church didn’t end at Vatican II either.

For the story click here.

2.  The Pope’s trip to Israel will entail a visit to the Al-Aqsa Mosque otherwise known as the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem.  That’ll be interesting.

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Rule of Three: SSPX, TAC, & the Orthodox Church

Saturday, January 31, AD 2009

metropolitan-kirill2

We have had a spate of exciting news these past two weeks.  So much good news that I have noticed a certain pattern forming.  That pattern usually comes in threes, so I’d like to introduce the Rule of Three theory.  The Rule of Three is a theorem that states good news comes in threes. 

First we have Pope Benedict XVI having the excommunications on the Society of St. Pius X (S.S.P.X.)  lifted on January 21.  Then we have rumors that the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith (C.D.F.) possibly offering the  Traditional Anglican Communion (T.A.C.) entry into the Catholic Church on January 29.  So there needs to be a third piece of good news percolating somewhere some would think?

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39 Responses to Rule of Three: SSPX, TAC, & the Orthodox Church

  • I think an invite will occur, but I don’t think it will be in the immediate future.

    Besides, the TAC issue is still just a rumor/consideration, though a really fascinating one at that.

  • It’s “interesting” that you call #1 “good news” with absolutely no qualifications whatsoever. Telling.

  • I think it is all good news. Even though the ryumors of TAC might be premature there is somethig in the wind. We actually in the USA can reconcille some Anglican through a wder use of the Anglican Use Parish.

  • Michael I.,

    It’s “interesting” that you call #1 “good news” with absolutely no qualifications whatsoever. Telling.

    Very telling that you abhor Forgiveness, The story of the Prodigal son, orthodoxy, Latin, the Extraodinary Form of the Roman Rite Mass, Ut Unum Sint, and many other Catholic doctrine just by that simple statement you left.

  • Forgiveness is fantastic. But the SSPX is not “orthodox.” News flash, Tito: You can love forgiveness, “orthodoxy,” Latin, the extraordinary form of the Mass, etc., and not embrace groups like SSPX that reject Vatican II, Pope John Paul II, and the Catechism and who believe that “the Jews” committed “deicide.”

    Don’t flirt with these people, Tito. Seriously.

  • Michael I.,

    Don’t worry, I don’t flirt with them. I appreciate much that they do, it’s their arrogance that ruffles my feathers.

    I’m more of a Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (F.S.S.P.) guy. Unfortunately there isn’t an F.S.S.P. church in my archdiocese for me to attend.

  • Looks like Rome is denying the TAC prelature rumors. I guess we’ll find out soon enough. But if it isn’t true, where did it come from? I remember the endless “Universal indult” rumors that came even years before Summorum Pontificum.

  • Alan, good point with the indult rummors, that thing seemed “imminent” for like 2 years! As to the TAC, everything will happen in God’s own time, but I have good reason to think the recent “rumors” are credible, things may be going slower (or even faster!) that we can tell but the wheels are certainly in motion!

    I have seen some of the vitrol SOME in the SSPX spew, esp. in regards to John Paul II, but the average SSPX’er I know (and to be fair that is only two and they are both college students if that is any indication) are not anywhere near as hostille as the image, indeed the ones I know seem to admire JP-II much more than certian liberal priests I am aware of!

    Tito, thanks so much for writing on this “rule of three!” The Russian situation is complex and mostly beyond my limited understanding, I am not sure what is the greater threshold to cross…

    1-Pope meeting with Patriarch or
    2-Pope being in Russia

    I have a feeling that at first you can’t do both. I have a feeling that the two men will have to meet at a “neutral” i.e not Moscow or Rome to save face. On first glance Ukraine would make sense but a little more of a look at that would show that to be the worst possible idea. I think John Paul II was well recieved in Romania before so that is possible, I’d put my money on Greece though, let’s the Patriarch come across looking good for the hard-line Russians, the Greek Orthodox Church seems to have good relations with Rome, indeed Patriarch Bartholemieu could do the inviting (yes he’s in Turkey but I am sure he has a free hand for hosting things in Greece.)

    Anyway my two cents, keep up the good work Tito!

  • PS-I think new Moscow Patriarch once operated out of Vienna so it could happen there too.

  • “Don’t flirt with these people, Tito. Seriously.”

    But Pope Benedict is “flirting” with them as well as the Vatican. It is time to get these people back in the Church to contribute to the Body of Christ their contributions and for the Church to moderate their extremes

  • Michael I,

    Forgiveness is fantastic. But the SSPX is not “orthodox.” News flash, Tito: You can love forgiveness, “orthodoxy,” Latin, the extraordinary form of the Mass, etc., and not embrace groups like SSPX that reject Vatican II, Pope John Paul II, and the Catechism and who believe that “the Jews” committed “deicide.”

    Don’t flirt with these people, Tito. Seriously.

    Wow, I didn’t realize you were such a stickler for orthodoxy…. would you join me in calling for the excommunication of these much less orthodox folks who reject the ACTUAL TEACHINGS of Vatican II while subscribing to some twisted liberal and satanic “Spirit” of Vatican II?

    Nancy Pelosi,
    Joe Biden,
    Abp. Mahoney
    Bp. Gumbleton
    50% of the USCCB Staff
    100% of the National Catholic Reporter staff (except maybe John Allen)
    All members of Catholics For Free Choice, Call to Action, etc.
    All those who do not reject the possibility of women’s ordination
    All those who accept that contraception may be moral in certain circumstances

    let the inquisition begin.

  • Matt – How do your RCIA mentors feel about your “take” on the Catholic faith?

  • Michael I,

    pardon me?

  • I think you’re right, except I think the election of Patriarch Kirill WAS the third bit of good news. He likely will meet with the Pope on neutral territory the first time.

  • Christopher,

    You make an excellent point. Dave Hartline alluded to that in his post in Catholic Report.

  • Matt – Do excuse me. I now remember you saying that you are not yet AMERICAN, but that you are working on it or something. I got mixed up and thought you were not yet CATHOLIC. A sincere mistake.

    That said, it was certainly a jab at your take on Catholicism. The RCIA bit was not important.

  • I’m confused Michael. While Matt’s rhetoric certainly is fiery, and he’s likely hyperbolizing when he mentions percentages, the thrust of his argument is true. All the people he named have put forth and defended positions that are contrary to the Catholic faith, including several non-negotiables, such as Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden defending and advocating abortion. I don’t see what’s wrong with saying people that disagree with the definitive teaching of the Catholic Church are outside of the Catholic faith. Personally, I think excommunication is a very drastic step to take, but I certainly wouldn’t mind it if more bishops spoke up and publicly declared that pro-abortion politicians cannot recieve communion. I don’t consider that politicizing the Eucharist, as a) it’s to protect the faithful from false teachers, and b) I believe the same thing should be done for Rudy Giuliani.

  • Looks like the Vatican is working on its equivalent of warp factor speed. Maybe that staid old bureaucracy is used to groundbreaking stuff, first with JP and now with B. Amazing times. One branch of Anglicans might graft onto the big redwood tree of Rome. This big Metro Bishop might also have civil relations with Holy See. Hey- maybe some day the Cardinals might make it to the Sup- oh, it happened.

  • A fourth bit of good news would be Msgr Williamson taking a perpetual vow of silence after repenting of his Jew-hatred, but I’ll take what has happened so far. Looking very much forward to seeing what the Russian Orthodox do.

    Oh, and Latin clergy definitely need to recultivate beards. 🙂

  • Michael (lionsdensf), I agree that some of the parties on Matt’s list are problematic and some simply do not represent the Catholic faith on various issues. You obviously agree that his across-the-board call for “excommunication” is absurd. I would also say his view of orthodoxy is quite narrow. As if the Vatican didn’t have better things to do than “excommunicate” the staff of NCR? Please.

  • Beards all around! :)#

    Gerard,

    I believe this has been planned out the previous two years. It just seems like warp drive, though it really is nice to see.

  • Michael I.
    a jab at your take on Catholicism.

    No Michael it was an attack on my personal Faith, not on my position. A most vile “ad hominem”.

    Michael I,

    Michael (lionsdensf), I agree that some of the parties on Matt’s list are problematic and some simply do not represent the Catholic faith on various issues. You obviously agree that his across-the-board call for “excommunication” is absurd. I would also say his view of orthodoxy is quite narrow.

    Yes, I used hyperbole to demonstrate that you have a very narrow view of orthodoxy when it comes to “conservative” perspectives suggesting the SSPX is not Catholic, but a very “BROAD” view when it comes to liberal ones by suggesting the people on my list are.

    As if the Vatican didn’t have better things to do than “excommunicate” the staff of NCR? Please.

    If the Vatican’s principle role is to lead souls to heaven, and preaching heresy is a principle way that those sheep are lost to the evil one, then NO… the Vatican hasn’t more important work.

    By the way, would you say that 100% of the NCR staff doesn’t render the assent of faith to the Church’s teachings on contraception and/or women’s ordination? Either case is completely legitimate grounds for excommunication, isn’t it?

  • By the way, would you say that 100% of the NCR staff doesn’t render the assent of faith to the Church’s teachings on contraception and/or women’s ordination?

    I have no idea. I don’t know the views of all of the staff members. Do you?

    Either case is completely legitimate grounds for excommunication, isn’t it?

    Either no, it’s not legitimate grounds for excommunication, or the Church has absolutely no interest in going around excommunicating people simply because they disagree with the Church’s teaching on birth control and/or women’s ordination. Thankfully they are a bit more generous and patient with such Catholics, unlike you who seems to get off on mindless internet “heretic”-hunting.

  • Michael J. Iafrate,

    By the way, would you say that 100% of the NCR staff doesn’t render the assent of faith to the Church’s teachings on contraception and/or women’s ordination?

    I have no idea. I don’t know the views of all of the staff members. Do you?

    If one can be judged by the articles one writes, edits or publishes, I have a pretty good idea that they do not…

    Either case is completely legitimate grounds for excommunication, isn’t it?

    Either no, it’s not legitimate grounds for excommunication, or the Church has absolutely no interest in going around excommunicating people simply because they disagree with the Church’s teaching on birth control and/or women’s ordination. Thankfully they are a bit more generous and patient with such Catholics, unlike you who seems to get off on mindless internet “heretic”-hunting.

    First of all, any Catholic who culpably persists in heresy is automatically excommunicated. People who hold such heretical views PRIVATELY are of course not notorious public sinners, and are to refrain from communion on their own, they are not generally subject to ecclsiastical action. Those who persist in teaching such heretical views, as does NCR are subject to ecclesiastical action up to and including excommunication for the good of their souls and those who they teach.

    c. 1364
    1. With due regard for can. 194, part 1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic or a schismatic incurs automatic (latae sententiae) excommunication and if a cleric, he can also be punished by the penalties mentioned in can. 1336, part 1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.

    Do you deny that it is harmful to souls to preach heresy, such as women’s ordination?

  • Happy “heretic”-hunting, Matt!

  • Michael I,

    you sure hate to get pinned down on calling evil for what it is.

  • I suggest that we, who are not experts in canon law or its interpretation, refrain from throwing around quotes from canon law. Excommunication is a serious matter. Even the acknowledgment of latae sententiae is rarely asserted by the Church.

  • Matt,

    With your views on torture and excommunication, I’d be fearin’ and tremblin’.

  • Matt – It’s tough to take you seriously when you say that believing in women’s ordination is “evil.”

  • Well, those women who have simulated ordination to the priesthood, and at least one man who has assisted, all have been uniformly excommunicated, and excommunication isn’t exactly a pleasant place for the soul to be. I don’t know if I’d call believing in the necessity of women’s ordination “evil,” but it certainly gives aid and comfort to people who get themselves in a bad place.

    Otherwise, I’d agree that heresy-hunting and tossed accusations generate far more heat than light, and a smoky, choking heat at that.

  • Dale,

    I’d call believing in the necessity of women’s ordination “evil,”

    Believing in the necessity? It’s heresy to believe in the possibility. Period. This is not me, this is the teaching of the Church. Is not all heresy evil?

    If you read through the posts, I’m responding to Michael I’s opposition to the lifting of excommunications and the attempts to reconcile the SSPX. The point is that his strictness on “orthodoxy” is relative to who’s ox is being gored. At the same time, it is scandalous for people to preach error and remain unaffected by public sanctions.

  • Matt:

    Is not all heresy evil?

    Formal, yes. Material, no. Otherwise I’d be forced to call my evangelical neighbors “evil.” There’s a difference between being wrong and being sinfully wrong.

    Look, I wholeheartedly assent to the Magisterium on WO, without the slightest hesitation. Even on the merely pragmatic level, WO has been an unmitigated disaster for those denominations which practice it, both in terms of dwindling numbers and even faster-dwindling orthodoxy. That’s the Holy Spirit pointing to the canary in the coal-mine, which is consistently and studiously ignored by the proponents of WO.

    Impending qualifier alert: But. That doesn’t mean that I think everyone who still favors it is a formal heretic in need of the penalty of excommunication. Those who simulate and assist with attempted WO, yes. Everybody else deserves patience, education and the passage of time. And, yes, careful rebuking and repudiation where necessary.

  • Is not all heresy evil?

    No. Dale has a pretty good explanation about why.

  • Dale,

    Is not all heresy evil?

    Formal, yes. Material, no.

    Wrong. All heresy is evil, however all material heretics are not automatically excommunicated. I didn’t ask if all heretics are evil, that’s really not a proper question.

    Otherwise I’d be forced to call my evangelical neighbors “evil.” There’s a difference between being wrong and being sinfully wrong.

    I think you’re off base here, we’re talking about Catholics who reject the teachings of the Church willfully. Heresy is formal when it is known that ones belief is in opposition to the teachings of the Church. I don’t think the people we’re talking about, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and the NCR staff are uneducated in their faith, they are intentionally rejecting Church teachings. That is, by definition formal. As to those who “read” the NCR, some of them may not be so culpable.

  • Matt,

    Aren’t there better ways for you to imagine, to aid in the kingdom’s coming?

  • OK, looks like a matter of defining one’s terms. Here’s something more precise: Not all heresy is mortally sinful.

    all material heretics are not automatically excommunicated.

    Actually, it’s rather stronger than that. Give me an example of a material heretic who IS automatically excommunicated. The Church isn’t in the business of excommunicating material heretics. Period.

    I think you’re off base here, we’re talking about Catholics who reject the teachings of the Church willfully. Heresy is formal when it is known that ones belief is in opposition to the teachings of the Church.

    Correct as to the theological formulation. However, the problem is that determining willfulness is not that easy. Sure, for the WO simulators–absolutely. Hence the thunderbolt of excommunication. It’s a crucial step removed for the likes of Pelosi, Biden and even the staff of the Reporter, as tiresomely obnoxious as the reportage and editorial line of that publication is. I can’t presume that Pelosi and Biden aren’t being misled by the theological smoke belched up in their respective diocese during their formations, perhaps even by their confessors. I’ve been told stuff that I know was wrong by well-meaning confessors myself. Look–do I *think* they are knowingly standing in opposition to the Church? More likely than not, yes. Do I *know* that for a fact. No, and that’s for their Ordinaries to determine and authoritatively counsel and discipline them about, as canon law indicates. If their Ordinaries fail to act, then the sin is upon their heads as well.

  • OK, looks like a matter of defining one’s terms. Here’s something more precise: Not all heresy is mortally sinful.

    all material heretics are not automatically excommunicated.

    Actually, it’s rather stronger than that. Give me an example of a material heretic who IS automatically excommunicated. The Church isn’t in the business of excommunicating material heretics. Period.

    Formal heresy involves an added element to the material heresy, that it is “freely willed”. Now, if you want to make the labels to be mutually exclusive, rather than formal being a subset of material, I don’t really care, it is not material to the question. A Catholic who manifests heresy, and who by virtual of his station can reasonably be presumed to be aware of his error, is subject to be excommunicated (an act of law), unless he can demonstrate that he is not aware of his error. This is important to protect the purity of the Church’s teaching. In the area of moral theology it’s theoretically possible that the person is not morally culpable for his error, the point of excommunication is to resolve the situation, it is not a condemnation.

    Will you now answer the question: are you saying all heresy is not evil?

    Correct as to the theological formulation. However, the problem is that determining willfulness is not that easy. Sure, for the WO simulators–absolutely. Hence the thunderbolt of excommunication. It’s a crucial step removed for the likes of Pelosi, Biden and even the staff of the Reporter, as tiresomely obnoxious as the reportage and editorial line of that publication is. I can’t presume that Pelosi and Biden aren’t being misled by the theological smoke belched up in their respective diocese during their formations, perhaps even by their confessors. I’ve been told stuff that I know was wrong by well-meaning confessors myself. Look–do I *think* they are knowingly standing in opposition to the Church? More likely than not, yes. Do I *know* that for a fact. No, and that’s for their Ordinaries to determine and authoritatively counsel and discipline them about, as canon law indicates. If their Ordinaries fail to act, then the sin is upon their heads as well.

    You’re position is self-contradictory… why can we not assume that the WO simulators (who were actually excommunicated under Canon 1378) are as misled by the theological smoke as are the others? Speaking is an external material act.

    I agree with you that those bishops and priest who are responsible for such poor formation, and who refuse to take concrete steps to correct the errors will have a lot of explaining to do when it comes to Judgement Day. Nevertheless, automatic excommunication requires no act of the local ordinary to execute, but it does obligate him to help the subject to reconciliation, shame on them for refusing their duty.

  • At the risk of having my words parsed to the point of death by a thousand cuts, let’s try this again.

    1. No, I’m not getting into a taffy pull about “evil” because the Church looks at heresy from the standpoint of sin, both mortal and venial. Is sin evil? Well, yes, but not all sin is of the same magnitude, eternally speaking. Heresy is sinful. However, the effect on the soul and eternal destination is a matter of culpability.

    2. No, it’s not self contradictory–not remotely. Prelates have issued warnings to the simulators and there is the precedent of Church action excommunicating those who have done the same thing. Moreover, they have been offered the opportunity to defend themselves canonically. They know going in that if they do this, they will be excommunicated. Period. None of which obtains with respect to Pelosi, Biden, etc.

    “Formal heresy involves an added element to the material heresy, that it is “freely willed”. Now, if you want to make the labels to be mutually exclusive, rather than formal being a subset of material, I don’t really care, it is not material to the question. A Catholic who manifests heresy, and who by virtual of his station can reasonably be presumed to be aware of his error, is subject to be excommunicated (an act of law), unless he can demonstrate that he is not aware of his error.”

    Assumed, but not proven. Not by a long shot. And you simply cannot wave away the need to prove willfulness in this matter. You need to start giving some canonical precedents here for me to buy this line of argument. Excommunication, far from being presumed, is extraordinary. I recommend you run this past canonist Ed Peters of the Canon Law blog, as I would be very interested in his take.

  • I think the very fact that there has been much disagreement with your three “happy” news shows that perhaps these three pieces of news do not compliment one another. And if that is the case, I’m thinking the clergy of the Catholic Church still don’t have it all together. Perhaps they’re throwing stuff on the wall and seeing what sticks.
    ———
    OliviaB.

Fellay to Williamson: Shut It

Tuesday, January 27, AD 2009

I must confess that when I read yesterday that Pope Benedict had lifted the excommunications against the four SSPX bishops, my first thought was not rejoicing that this suggested that a million semi-schismatic Catholics around the world might soon be fully returned to the fold, but rather, “Oh brother, does this mean that Bishop Williamson is now our problem?”

Though we’ve had our share of loopy bishops in union with the pope, Williamson takes episcopal antics to new levels. He’s been known to issue letters discussing how women have no business going to college, the dangerous modernist threat which the movie The Sound Of Music poses, and more sinisterly has recently flirted with holocaust denial.

Thus, I was encouraged to see that Bishop Fellay, the Superior General of the SSPX, has issued a statement saying, “I have forbidden Bishop Williamson to issue any public opinion on any political or historical matter until further notice.”

Now there’s something I can say Amen to. Perhaps we may hope that the SSPX will not only become fully reunited with the Church in the near future, but will fail to embarrass liturgically traditional Catholics in the process. Deo gratias.

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13 Responses to Fellay to Williamson: Shut It

  • Williamson is no longer excommunicate, but he should never be a bishop. The man is a disgrace, plain and simple.

  • Donald,

    amen to that.

    Let’s be honest though, there are millions of fully heretical Catholics who enjoy “apparent” communion with the Holy See, and many millions more who are semi-heretical.

  • No argument from me on that score Matt.

  • Deo Gratias on Mr. Fellay’s ‘delayed’ reproach on Mr. Williamson.

  • I’m no authority on Bishop (?) Fellay, but he seems to me to be somewhat “loopy” himself, at times.

  • I’m no authority on Bishop (?) Fellay, but he seems to me to be somewhat “loopy” himself, at times.

    Nevertheless, he did the right thing in this case.

    liturgically traditional Catholics

    Catholics who prefer the “new” Mass are also “liturgically traditional.” We just prefer a different tradition. 🙂

  • Michael,

    To be clear, I prefer the “new” mass as well — by “liturgically traditional” I just meant preferring a “do the red, say the black” approach combined with the music, vestments, incense, etc. that reflect the sacredness of the mass and the history of the Church.

  • Darwin – Fair enough. But even there, I’m not sure “traditional” is the right word when we’re talking about a Church with a diversity of liturgical traditions. Like it or not, there are different “traditions” when it comes to which music, vestments, etc. reflect “sacredness.”

    I dig incense, absolutely. Insisted on using it at my wedding. 🙂

  • I’m not sure innovations of the last 40 years qualify as “traditions”, unless you mean introducing “traditions” of other faiths to the Catholic Mass… In any event, I would say that by “liturgically traditional” one means celebrating mass according to all of the rubrics, and guided by authoritative documents, such as Redemptionis Sacramentum and Sacrosanctum Concillium (Latin is to be retained). This can refer to the Ordinary Form, or the Extraordinary Form, but it is sadly rare outside the Extraordinary Form.

  • Michael & Darwin,

    I agree about the Ordinary Form. When it’s done right, I feel like I’m in Heaven!

  • Tito,

    you must be talking about that Cranmerian rite 😉

    Kidding aside, that is an awesome Mass, even if it is in English.

  • news flash:

    Pope Benedict speaks about SSPX during Wednesday Audience


    I decided, a few days ago, to grant the remission of the excommunication in which the four bishops ordained by Archbishop Lefebvre in 1988, without pontifical mandate, had incurred. I fulfilled this act of fatherly mercy because those prelates repeatedly manifested to me their deep suffering for the situation in which they found themselves. I hope that this gesture of mine will be followed by the solicitous effort by them to accomplish the ulterior steps necessary to accomplish full communion with the Church, thus testifying true fidelity and true recognition of the Magisterium and of the authority of the Pope and of the Second Vatican Council.

    While I renew with affection the expression of my full and unquestionable solidarity with our brothers receivers of the First Covenant, I hope that the memory of the Shoah leads mankind to reflect on the unpredictable power of evil when it conquers the heart of man.

    May the Shoah be for all a warning against forgetfulness, against denial or reductionism, because the violence against a single human being is violence against all. No man is an island, a famous poet write. The Shoah particularly teaches, both old an the new generations, that only the tiresome path of listening and dialogue, of love and of forgiveness lead the peoples, the cultures, and the religions of the world to the hoped-for goal of fraternity and peace in truth. May violence never again crush the dignity of man!