Daily Archives: August 26, 2010

Bishop Fellay’s reaction to Bishop Williamson and the future of the NO

The current mood within the SSPX

Gun powder smell at the SSPX after the controversial newsletter of Bishop Williamson reported here

The Remnant has an exclusive interview with Bishop Fellay, interesting under several profiles. First of all, Bishop Fellay denies having knowledge of a motu proprio as described by Williamson. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t one in the offing of course and Bishop Williamson’s sources could simply be better informed; still, one doesn’t find it very probable that Bishop Fellay would be kept in the dark whilst he is leading the talks with the Vatican. Bishop Fellay’s dismissal of the rumour as “gossip” shows that he is pretty confident that he is not out of the loop.

Secondly, Bishop Fellay issues a clear advice to Bishop Williamson to, well, mind his own business and not intervene in such a way in matters not concerning him in his duties as SSPX Bishop. Of course Williamson would say that it is his own business, but you get the drift.

Thirdly, Bishop Fellay says that the talks are going “smoothly and according to plan”. One would like to know a bit more about that, though understandably we are not allowed to get further details on the matter. On the other hand, this obviously diplomatic statement would have been issued even if the negotiations were not going absolutely anywhere, so take it with a pinch if salt….

From the Remnant article further interesting elements emerge; I will mention them only briefly.

1) The SSPX needs a new seminary. Vocations continue to be massive, money is clearly not a pressing problem.

2) The SSPX is talking to various Church authorities in the US to sound the possibility of acquiring one of their own unused structures or land (say: a now-closed seminary, or some land they own). It would appear that in the past the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP) has encountered refusals to sell property to them because of their “ideological” stance, and besides being in full communion the FSSP are certainly “moderate” compared to the SSPX. I suppose that for many Bishops if you are in favour of the Tridentine Mass you are anathema anyway.

3) Dulcis in fundo: Bishop Fellay confirmed that when Summorum Pontificum was issued, an unnamed “high-ranking prelate” gave the Novus Ordo not more than another 20-25 years. Whilst one doesn’t know how high the prelate ranks, it is highly indicative that he said so to Fellay, clearly sending the message that as soon as the ’68ers have gone the Novus Ordo will follow them rather fast. As we all know that lex orandi, lex credendi the idea that Vatican II ideology may survive after the Novus Ordo has gone is rather naive.

Better days ahead.


“Liturgical entertainment” by the Papal visit?

Fr Ray Blake’s St. Mary Magdalen blog has a rather astonishing entry about a mail received from the diocesan “visit coordinator”. Apparently, in Hyde Park “liturgical entertainment” will be provided for the several hours between the opening of the park and the Pope’s arrival.

The word itself makes one cringe (as Fr Blake dutifully did). If it’s “liturgical” it’s not supposed to be “entertainment” at all and vice versa. We’ll have to see whether some nostalgic fan of guitar masses has decided to organise something according to the “hermeneutic of discontinuity” or whether it was just a case of a horribly worded email. Still, anyone with some respect for the liturgy would never come to the idea of using an expression like “liturgical entertainment”. This sounds rather like an oxymoron, as in “funny funeral” or “merry murder”. But I googled a bit and the expression really seems to exist! V II is a gift that keeps on giving….

As Fr Blake points out, that such ideas come out during the visit of the most liturgical of recent Popes would, if confirmed, rather look like a slap in the Holy Father’s face. I hope not and frankly do not want to think that Pope Benedict’s enemies would be so stupid, besides being so brazen; but should this really be true than it would be the duty of the Holy Father to save his own face and the reputation of Catholicism in this country buy taking harsh measures and cutting off the one or other guitar-strumming head.

Nothing tragic for now, anyway as the most probable option is that what is meant is superficial ’68 bollocks on which the adjective “liturgical” has been added because it sounded cool. Vatican II doesn’t want to die peacefully.


In the Alaskan primary, the Pro-Life Republican Candidate obtains an unexpected victory

Pro-life probable Primary winner: Joe Miller, Alaska

Some days ago I have written about the importance of not leaving one’s catholicism outside of the ballot box. The question was then posed what is one to do in a situation in which apparently there is no choice.
My answer to that was that whilst there might be situations where there is no pro-life candidate available, in many instances there might be candidates worthy of support at a former stage; thinking of the US, at the Primaries.

Today, it may seem that a big surprise is in the offing. Whilst official data will not be available for some days, it would appear that in Alaska the pro-life Republican Senatorial candidate Joe Miller has obtained the most unexpected of victories against the abortionist candidate Lisa Murkowski. Murkowski is the incumbent, had a much more professionally organised campaign (and money) and was leading with a huge advantage. Truth be said, Miller profited from a massive last-minute money injection from the Tea Party, but in such circumstances money is rather more useful in making one candidate’s message known than in changing people’s minds. It would also appear that abortion did play a role as the proposal of requiring parental notification for women 17 and younger seeking an abortion was apparently approved by 55% of the voters (and note again that the proposal is additional sign of political activism at an early stage).

It is therefore clear that in Alaska abortion was part of the campaign, that the pro-life side is stronger than many would expect and that a pro-life candidate can win – and win in such a spectacular and unexpected way as Miller has very probably done – also because of the pro-life vote. In a democracy, such things never go unnoticed and Mrs. Murkowski has certainly noticed.

It will not always go this way and it would be an illusion to think that the pro-life involvement of Catholics may always contribute to such results, at least in the short and medium term.
But it certainly shows what can be done.


%d bloggers like this: