October 5, 2014

RORATE CAELI: On the Synod and on the SSPX A guest-piece by Don Pio Pace


"...As for some traditionalists, ever since the resignation of Benedict XVI marginalized them once more, they are deeply bewildered, but not desperate. They are following events, but in a completely different fashion in which they were interested in Benedict XVI, who wanted to join them forcefully to the "hermeneutic of continuity" ride. With Francis' agreement, and even with his positive encouragement, the talks with the Society of Saint Pius X in view of its canonical regularization go on with this basic understanding: the society is not in breach of communion. From which we can understand the tone of the extremely warm meeting that took place on September 23, at the Palace of the Holy Office, between Cardinal Müller and Bp. Fellay. (Despite all that, an outcome is still unlikely in the short term: by reading the more detached communiqué of the SSPX after the meeting, and Bp. Fellay's interview released on October 3, we understand that the Swiss bishop is making the most of this climate to make the good sentiment last longer.)* We can even say that the contacts between the SSPX superiors and the Roman offices in charge of the SSPX files had never reached such a high level of cordiality. Jean-Marie Dumont, a correspondent for French Catholic monthly Famille chrétienne, even mentions a discreet visit by Abp. Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Ecclesia Dei Commission, to Écône (he more likely means to the General House of the Society of Saint Pius X in Menzingen, also in Switzerland).

In fact, this fashion of considering the "Lefebvrist question" is itself "pastoral". To ask of Bp. Fellay, as it was done under Benedict XVI, to sign laborious "doctrinal declarations" was only essential insofar as the SSPX fell into line with the "hermeneutic of continuity". But, as paradoxical as it may seem at a first untrained glance, freed from all "restorationist" fixations and scruples, there is no further unease with the gap between pastoral and dogmatics. So much so that the criticism of the Council in the name of dogma by the Society of Saint Pius X, that disturbed Benedict so much, does not disturb Francis at all. In the worst case, it actually strengthens him."


Copyright 2014 David Heath - All Rights Reserved

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