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The Recusant

An unofficial SSPX newsletter, fighting a guerilla war for the soul of Tradition!

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Menzingen response to B.XVI abdication announcement

Posted by The Editor on February 12, 2013 at 1:30 PM

As follows:

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   "The Society of Saint Pius X has learned of the sudden announcement about the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, which will be effective on the evening of February 28, 2013.  Despite the doctrinal differences that were still evident on the occasion of the theological talks held between 2009 and 2011, the Society of Saint Pius X does not forget that the Holy Father had the courage to recall the fact that the Traditional Mass had never been abrogated, and to do away with the canonical sanctions that had been imposed on its bishops following their consecration in 1988.  It is not unaware of the opposition that these decisions have stirred up, obliging the pope to justify himself to the bishops of the whole world. The Society expresses its gratitude to him for the strength and the constancy that he has shown toward it in such difficult circumstances, and assures him of its prayers for the time that he wishes to devote from now on to recollection. Following its founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, the Society of Saint Pius X reaffirms its attachment to eternal Rome, Mother and Instructress [Mater et Magistra] of Truth, and to the See of Peter.  It reiterates its desire to make its contribution, according to its abilities, to resolving the grave crisis that is shaking the Church.  It prays that, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the cardinals of the next conclave may elect the pope who, according to the will of God, will work for the restoration of all things in Christ (Eph 1:10).

Menzingen, February 11, 2013,

on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes"

http://www.dici.org/en/news/press-release-of-the-general-house-of-the-society-of-saint-pius-x/

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Yes, this is the same DICI website who, only last month, managed to report on everything Benedict XVI said during his address for the "World Day of Peace" except the outrageous heresy contained therein. (See our article 'Quo Vadis DICI..?')

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Now go back and read the press statement again. And then when you're ready, read on.

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So, according to DICI/Menzingen, "the SSPX" (that means us, apparrently!) "desires to contribute to resolving...the crisis in the Church"
(French: "...désir d’apporter sa contribution pour résoudre ... la grave crise qui secoue l’Eglise")

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Hold on a moment! What exactly does that mean, and what does it imply? Surely the SSPX is contributing to the resolving of the crisis? Surely that is what the SSPX has always done, all that it has done, indeed that is its very raison d'etre? Surely that is what the SSPX does by its very existence? Which being the case, and if nothing has changed, why mention it? It would be like me telling someone that I desire to breath, eat three square meals a day and be able to use my mouth to speak. You don't mention things which are so obvious that they can be taken for granted, unless they are somehow in question. How can the SSPX 'desire' to do what it is already doing and has always done?!?

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Does this perhaps mean, or does it imply (or do we detect a hint of a *mere suggestion*) that the author of this Menzingen press release believes that the SSPX will contribute to ending the crisis only when it is granted canonical status? Only when it is "regularised"? Only when it signs an agreement with modernist Rome? Does this therefore mean that the SSPX in its current position (of being officially disapproved of by modernist Rome) is not contributing to ending the crisis?

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Remember what we said in the analysis of Bp.Fellay's December2012 Canada talk (here) about how one is left with the impression that some people view SSPX/Rome saga as being two political parties negotiating for an alliance or electoral pact?

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Remember also that several people have maintained, and still maintain, that Menzingen would love to sign an agreement even now, if only the Romans were prepared to be as flexible as they are (and all Bp. Fellay's "hardline" sounding rhetoric since the deal fell through cannot disguise that fact!)

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Second point to note about this disgraceful piece of politician's double-speak is the draughting-in of Archbishop Lefebvre (as a sort of harmless mascot) in a vain attempt to link his name to the sentiments expressed in the Press Statement and use him to posthumously approve Menzingen's dangerous flirting with the very same modernists (and who is more Modernist that Benedict XVI?) which Archbishop Lefebvre himself so stridently condemned while he was alive!

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They say:
    "Following its founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, the Society of Saint Pius X reaffirms its attachment to eternal Rome, Mother and Instructress [Mater et Magistra] of Truth, and to the See of Peter."

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Again: Hold on a moment!

Those of us who are familiar with the 1974 Declaration know full well that that is only half of what he said! The very next sentence of the 1974 Declaration (which the Press release does not quote!) is the very one in which Menzingen, and their current realpolitik, stands condemned by their own Holy Founder. It reads:

   "We refuse, on the other hand, and have always refused to follow the Rome of neo-Modernist and neo-Protestant tendencies..." and goes on to attack Vatican II and everything which came after it ("It begins in heresy and ends in heresy, even if not all of its acts are formally heretical").

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The whole point of the opening words of the 1974 declaration is that they are drawing a contrast between two things. 'On the one hand we adhere to Eternal Rome, whereas on the other hand we refuse modern Rome.' You cannot quote the first part and leave off the second part: that is to deliberately falsifiy the words of Archbishop Lefebvre. He pointedly did not simply say "We adhere to Rome" and leave it at that!

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To quote someone only in part, whereby the missing portion of the quote alters the meaning, (let alone produces the exact opposite meaning!) is not only to misquote them; if done deliberately it amounts to lying and deceiving, and in the case of quoting someone who is no longer alive, it dishonours the memory of the deceased, since they are no longer present to protest their innocence.

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Finally, I cannot quite get over this little bit here:

   "The Society expresses its gratitude to him for the strength and the constancy that he has shown toward it..."

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Something about this part makes me feel very uneasy. I have read it and re-read it and cannot quite put my finger on it. For the moment we will leave aside any discussion of whether this part of the statement is actually true (I suppose in one sense it could be said that Benedict XVI has shown a *constant* desire to break down the Traditionalist resistance, and a certain strength and constancy in his will to absorb those following the SSPX back into the Conciliar Vatican II project).

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Is the mission of the SSPX not the mission of the Church, no more, no less? Is not the SSPX a work of the Church? Was not Archbishop Lefebvre merely continuing the work of the Church when all others abandoned it? Is not a Pope responsible for the whole Church, for the state of the Church, and in one sense for every soul which is lost or saved as a result?

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So why are we bothered about how the Pope views the SSPX, or what he shows towards us? The statement smacks of personal gratitude which is a dangerous thing: even gratitude on behalf of an organisation like the SSPX. Remember: The SSPX is not an end in itself. Almight God in His Providence created it (via Archbishop Lefebvre) to fulfill a particular need, to plug a particular gap at this particular moment in time. The SSPX apostolate is not "our apostolate" - it is the apostolate of the Church. The Pope either does his duty faithfully or he does not. The Pope ought not to pursue a personal agenda any more that the SSPX. Both are there to serve God. If the Pope were doing his duty faithfully, if the Church were in better shape, there ought to be no need for an SSPX. So what exactly are we supposed to be grateful to Benedict XVI for? For doing his job? (Has he even been doing his job?) For giving the secular press the impresison that he somehow favours the SSPX? What good is that if he continues to pursue novelty and destroy Tradition?

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The author of this Menzingen Press Statement needs to ask himself: what matters more, the good of the SSPX or the good of Tradition and the Church as a whole (and what is the distinction?)

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I apologise if I have had some difficulty in articulating that third point. It is not easy to put into words. I hope enough of you understand what I am trying to say. It feels as though the author of the Menzingen Press Statement cares only about the corporate good of the SSPX. God forbid that that should be so, but would not be the first such instance.


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1 Comment

Reply mista
2:11 AM on February 16, 2013 
Don't apologize for anything. You have done a nice job dissecting the subtleties of the Menzingen press statement, which I presume must the thoughts of Bishop Fellay. The Tradition of the Catholic Church will not be preserved by smooth use of words to appease and charm such as a politician might do. How disgustingly sad for the Society, falling all over itself licking the red shoes of this Pope knowing the horrendous damage done to the Church in 8 years of power. It would have better for the Traditional Church for the Society to not have issued any statement whatsoever and allow this Pope to drift away into whatever historical box will be saved for him.