On Rorate Caeli, another excellent blog post about the difficult (well, no; not really…) decision the SSPX must take in the next weeks, and which might lead to a dangerous, expensive, and rather damaging split.
I leave it to you to follow the article in its many interesting points. I limit myself to comment on a couple of points:
1. The split itself: the author of the article points out disagreement doesn’t mean disobedience, and in the end one or more of the bishops may well decide that much as they disagree, they will obey. The example made is Bishop Tissier de Mallerais. The evidently well-informed author states ” These last few days, even after the reception of his superior, he has called the faithful to unity in several different places”. This is extremely good news, though if the disagreement was not so serious as to cause a split I can’t avoid considering the words in the response letter rather on the harsh side.
2. The author also points out to “the predators coming from Sedevacantist mini-chapels that have, as their main sign of charity, the fact that they hate one another”. One could make the obvious observation that perhaps more attention should have been paid to these communities before accepting them as part of the Society, but I assume such distinctions are not always as easy to make beforehand as they appear after a division has occurred. Up to a certain extent, such influences and questionable strains – possibly kept under the radar screen when absolutely necessary – are unavoidable in an organisation like the SSPX. My take on this is that rather than hoping in an illusory unanimity in favour of the reconciliation, the latter should be seen as a welcome opportunity to force the enemies of the Church – because if we look at things rationally, this is what they are – to come out in the open and admit their hostility to Rome qua Rome. The reconciliation will unavoidably lead to disagreements, and the disagreements will happily lead to a cleansing.
On a separate note, I notice up to now and apart from the leaked letter the three bishops have not issue any public statement against the agreement, let alone an open threat of splitting the Society into two. Whilst it might be said that they will do it the moment the reconciliation is announced, I wonder whether it is possible to reach in a forceful manner the more the hundreds of priests and seminarians without stating publicly what the consequences of a reconciliation would be. I might be too sanguine here – I rather often am, thank God – but in my eyes if the three were determined to go on with the split in case of reconciliation, than it would make sense to openly and publicly threat with the former in order to try to prevent the latter.
We will see how this evolves, but we are approaching one month from the SSPX letter to the three bishops and such a split has not been publicly announced.
I invite to continued prayers that this situation might come to a positive end soon.