Tuesday, 24 June 2008

On returning home....

No not the Australian bishops' pastoral letter on lapsed catholics, but the SSPX!

NLM and other sources have stories that the SSPX has until 28 June to respond to a proposal that would enable them to re-enter full communion with Rome.

I have to say it is pretty hard to see agreement being reached given the noises that some of the SSPX bishops have been making publicly, the sort of stuff they have on their websites, and the views of many of the laity who attend their masses.

But still we should be praying hard that this time it does come off!

First out of charity for those attending SSPX, whose access to several sacraments is questionable (I doubt whether their confessions or marriages, both of which require jurisdiction, are valid for example, not withstanding some of the convoluted arguments some canonists put forward on this subject).

Secondly, out of concern for the unity of the Church. The desire to cut off the prospect of formal schism should be important to all of us.

And thirdly for us! Imagine the impact that the return of so many traditionalists could make to the Church in terms of the balance of forces, and the advantages of the special canonical structure that is apparently being offered.

Go here for more:

3 comments:

Cardinal Pole said...

Oh no, Terra, no, no, no:

1) "the sort of stuff they have on their websites"
Like what? Citations, please. If the SSPX Principles page at sspx.org were published as a mini-Catechism and distributed widely then religious literacy would increase dramatically.

2) "the views of many of the laity who attend their masses"
Like what? Based on what evidence? What of the views of many of those, as verified from Church surveys, who attend the Novus Ordo?

3)"convoluted arguments some canonists put forward on this subject"
Not convulated, but in fact quite simple: there is a CATASTROPHIC emergency situation in the Church today, therefore the SSPX Bishops enjoy supplied jurisdiction.

4) "the prospect of formal schism"
Watch your diction, Terra. This is very serious. Did you, in fact, mean material schism?

5) "special canonical structure"
If this is true then it is probably a slap in the face for the SSPX. The crucial difference between the SSPX situation and Opus Dei's personal prelature structure is that those who attend Mass with the SSPX do not *belong* to the SSPX (unless they're in the Third Order), whereas Opus Dei is expressly for laymen, with a small clerical component.

Nothing will come of this proposal. What Rome must do is this: abrogate and suppress the Novus Ordo; junk Dignitatis Humanae completely and show the errors of the other Vatican II documents; depose the modernists and humanists from their respective Sees; catechise the laymen; and begin a vigorous missionary campaign among non-Catholics. But the situation will have to become a lot worse before Rome understands this.

Terra said...

Let's focus on praying for a good outcome rather than debating what the SSPX do or don't do and say.

I have to admit that I find a certain irony in the use of terms like 'material schism', 'imperfect communion', etc, etc to dance around the fundamental reality.

Canon Law defines schism as 'withdrawal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or from communion with the members of the Church subject to him'.

The SSPX's bishops are excommunicated, their priests suspended. Yet do they submit?

I half understand the reasons why Rome is reluctant to call a spade a spade. After all, they have at least been consistent, like-wise reluctant to take on the 'liberals'.

From the sound of it, that reluctance is about to change.

The move to automatically excommunicate those involved with simulated ordinations was a shot at the left. Maybe this is the balancing shot in the other direction?

I think clarifying the situation is a wise move, the situation (at both ends of the spectrum) is a danger to souls (as shown not least by this novel concept of supplied jurisdiction due to the 'emergency situation'. Maybe it its true. But what if it isn't? The SSPX's masses and confirmations are valid but illicit, baptisms ok, but everything else has a big question mark on it).

Catechizing laymen, a vigorous missionary campaign, clean up job on heresy - all on the cards. Reinterpret VII in the light of tradition, agree that not everything in the documents is ordinary magisterium, and start reforming the reformable - already happening.

But Rome is not going to abrogate and suppress the NO ( a little reform of the reform though is surely on the cards) or repudiate documents altogether.

The SSPX should have stuck to the agreement in 1988. This time around, the Pope has reached out a long way. The SSPX should take the deal.

Cardinal Pole said...

Terra, have you seen the conditions as posted on wdtprs.com/blog? What do you make of them?