The Recusant

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

(Transcribed and translated from the audio available at: )


'Ubi Maria Ibi Ecclesia'
Sermon given by His Grace Arbishop Lefebvre 
Econe, Pentecost, 14th May 1990

“All these were perservering with one mind in prayer, with the women and Mary the Mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.” ACTS 1-14


In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost Amen.


I would like to bring to your attention an aspect of Our Blessed Lady. Yesterday was 13th May, the anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima and we had the procession and renewed the consecration of the seminary to fulfil the wishes of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


Concerning the apostles, we read in the bible, “...acceperunt Spiritum sanctum et COEPERUNT LOQUI,” - “ THEY STARTED TO SPEAK.” The Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Holiness with which they were filled, pushed them to communicate what they had received through words.


Scripture does not mention Our Blessed Lady, but we know that she was there amongst them, with them when the Holy Ghost came, at this memorable event. Let us not forget that it was through Mary that the apostles received this Spirit of Truth and Holiness. Yes, she was the channel through which the Holy Ghost descended onto the apostles and disciples of Our Lord who were there at the Cenacle. The Popes affirm it explicitly, because Mary was filled with the Holy Ghost long before the apostles, long before Pentecost.


The simple fact that when the Angel Gabriel came and announced to Mary, the glorious news of her divine maternity, said to her, “Ave Maria, Gratia plena” - “Hail Mary, full of grace,” yes she is full of grace, in other words full of the Holy Ghost, and he added, “Spiritus Sanctus superveniet in te”- the Holy Ghost will come upon you and by the assistance of the Holy Ghost you will become the mother of Jesus. Thus the Blessed Virgin Mary had her Pentecost before the day of Pentecost.


And she also spoke, when she had still only just received the Holy Ghost, and became the mother of Jesus, then she went and visited Saint Elisabeth her cousin. And it was by her intermediation that St, John the Baptist too received the Holy Ghost, and her cousin Elizabeth through St. John the Baptist. Thus from that very moment Mary started to spread the grace of the Holy Ghost to those with whom she came into contact. And she spoke.


She spoke and she left for us the vibrant words of the Magnificat, her Magnificat, which is the Gospel of Mary. In the first four verses Mary, filled with the Holy Ghost, sings the glory of God. God had deigned to acknowledge her humility and because she was humble she was elevated to such a high dignity. “Magnificat anima mea. ..exsultavit spiritus meus…” - my spirit exults with joy, my soul sings the glory of God. In these first four verses, she gives thanks to God for what she had received from the Holy Ghost and for the fact that she had become the mother of God.


In the next four verses, the Blessed Virgin Mary already gives us in advance what Our Lord would later explain in His sermon on the Mount. It is almost a short summary of the sermon on the Mount, of the Beatitudes in particular: blessed are the humble, blessed are the poor, blessed are those who fear God, the “timentes,” the “humiles” the “esurientes.” She even used the same word that Our Lord would later use: blessed are they that hunger and thirst for justice - “beati qui esuriunt...” “Esurientes” says the Blessed Virgin Mary, blessed those who hunger and thirst for holiness, for justice.


But woe to those, says the Blessed Virgin Mary, who are proud, woe to those who are full of themselves, to those who trust in their riches, to those who trust in their power. The “potentes” the “divites”, the “superbi”. That’s what the Blessed Virgin warns about: watch out, those of you the proud, you who comfort yourselves with your power and your money, you have not the spirit of poverty, who have not the spirit of humility. God is not with you.


And then in the last two verses, Our Blessed Lady makes a kind of prophecy “Suscepit Israel puerum suum” God will look after Israel. But, you might ask, wasn't Israel already under God's protection, as is seen in the Old Testament? Well, it is actually here that the New Testament begins, and Mary sees already the foundation of the Church, with which she will have an efficacious role to play on Pentecost Sunday, since she is the channel through which the Holy Ghost came to the apostles.


The Blessed Virgin Mary already saw the New Israel, the Israel of the New Testament, it is the Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the blood of the New Testament, NOVI et AETERNI TESTAMENTI. “Hic est calix sanguinis mei, novi et aeterni testamenti.” This is the Blood of the New Covenant, the New Testament. Mary saw all of it, she saw the foundation of the Church.


Our Blessed Lady didn't just say it in her Magnificat, her Gospel, she will also put it onto practice. When she speaks of the humble, of those who are poor, those who practice the spirit of poverty, those who practice fear of the Lord: that is something she will show all through her life, Bethlehem shows it, she will submit through fear of the Lord to His Holy Will, by going wherever St. Joseph says, whether to Bethlehem, or into Egypt, or back to Nazareth. Our Lady fears the Lord and fears the authority of whoever shows her the Will of God. It is a filial fear, not a servile fear It is her love of God which makes her fear anything which could displease God. And therefore she submits all her life to God.


Whatever trials or sufferings she had, she offered them to God: the trial of Bethlehem, the trial of Our Lord staying in the temple for three days when they were looking for him: “et nos dolentes quaerebamus te” - “We have sought thee sorrowing,” said Our Lady to the Child Jesus. And she also assisted with sorrow at the death of St. Joseph, this spouse whom she had loved and obeyed with fidelity for thirty years. And then finally, her greatest sorrow, watching her Son die.


All these pains and sorrows that she suffered, she offered them in her humility to God, since throughout her whole life she wanted to do only God's will.


And since, she participated in the foundation of the Church, she has the needs of the Church at heart. She who was filled with the Spirit of Truth and Holiness, she wanted the apostles also, to be filled with this same Spirit and we know that they were filled with this Spirit since they started to talk and they converted thousands of souls and they even gave their life rather than deny the truths that they preached.


I would like in conclusion to take this opportunity to make a few practical applications considering the situation in which we find ourselves today.


People who don’t really understand our position and the attitude we have had for all these years since the Council, they like to say, and to remind us constantly, that “Where the Pope is, there is the Church! You are wrong to oppose the Pope, since in opposing the Holy Father are you not opposing the Church, are you not separating yourself from the Church?”


But, my dear brethren, isn't it better to say, with a more profound truth, “Where Mary is, there is the Church.”?


Because it is through Mary that the Apostles were made founders of the Church. And Mary cannot err, Mary is infallible. Mary cannot profess error. Mary cannot sin, she is immaculate, conceived without sin. She is holy, perfect and she is the light of truth, and that is what she communicated to the Apostles.


Therefore, as far as the Apostles and St. Peter continued to be united to Mary in the Spirit of Truth, in the Spirit of Holiness, then yes, YES! we are with the Popes, we are with the Church, because she continues the Truth, she continues Holiness.


But, if, by some incredible circumstances, the successor of Peter decided no longer to follow Mary, no longer to spread the Spirit of Truth and Holiness, what would we do? To whom would we turn? Where can we go? We will stay with Mary. We will surround her as the apostles did on Pentecost Sunday. And we will remain with her in the Spirit of Truth and Holiness.


But, my dear brethren, you know, it is a historical fact: not only was Mary present at Pentecost, she wanted to have influence over the Church not only during it's first fifteen years, while she was still on this earth after the death of Our Lord. She has, throughout the centuries, watched over her Church and watched over her apostles. She has appeared again and again to remind us of the truth. The last time she did this was at Fatima, and she gave a secret which she wanted to be published in 1960. Why have the Popes continued to refuse to publish this secret?


I don’t know if you are aware, but when there was this ecumenical meeting at Assisi, a group of Catholics, who were not traditionalists, wanted Our Lady of Fatima to be present at Assisi for this meeting. There was a large procession of Italian Catholics who accompanied the Statue of Our Lady of Fatima towards Assisi. But they were turned back. Our Blessed Lady was not wanted at Assisi.


Mary asked that the Pope and all the bishops of the world consecrate the world, and in particular Russia, to her Immaculate Heart. But they haven’t done it. They refuse to do what Mary asks them. So there is a real opposition towards Mary, because the Blessed Virgin Mary isn’t ecumenical. The Blessed Virgin Mary recognises only Jesus Christ and the Spirit of Jesus Christ, the Spirit of Truth and of Holiness, which is the foundation of the Church, which is the Church itself.


And that’s why, when people say that we oppose the Pope, it is not true. We oppose the Pope only when he no longer makes himself the echo of the Holy Ghost in the Truth and in Holiness. But we are not against the Pope, successor of Peter, when really presents himself as the successor of Peter, faithful to his function. That’s how we must reply.


So, let us pray to Our Blessed Mother that we will remain faithful, that we will remain faithful to her. It is through her protection and through devotion to her that we will keep the faith and remain part of the Catholic Church. The Blessed Virgin Mary is the Mother of the Catholic Church, she is not the mother of a church which brings all ‘religions’ together. As His Excellency, Bishop Tissier de Mallerais, said yesterday, “Mary is the Mother of the unique Catholic Church, the unique Divine Church.”


Therefore let us ask Our Blessed Lady to help us to remain faithful despite all the difficulties, despite all the ordeals. Let us beg her to intercede for the Church authorities, the Pope and the bishops so that they will return to the true devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary herself, and that they remain in the spirit which they received on the day of Pentecost, the Spirit of Truth and Holiness, the Spirit of Faith.


Take a look at one more recent example, which really casts doubt on a return to Tradition in the near future by the current authorities in Rome. You know that recently, at the start of March there appeared a decree in Rome which promulgates a new Profession of Faith. In this new Profession of Faith, which in a way replaces the anti-modernist oath of St. Pius X, there is:


- First of all the Creed. No problem there, the Creed is the same one as always. No hesitation about signing that, about making the Creed our Profession of Faith.


- Then there are three articles. The first two are in perfectly conformity with the Traditional Faith, they only say that we are united to all the truths taught by the Popes in the dogmatic councils of the past.


- But the third paragraph, which is explained in the introduction written for this Profession of Faith, demands that those who sign agree with whatever “the Church’s Magisterium of Today”, the bishops throughout the whole world, profess to believe in.




And in the introduction they say quite clearly, that this is so that everyone has to accept what was said and done during the Council. There we have it. So, they’ve taken what would have been a normal Profession of Faith and added to it a third paragraph which obliges us to accept the Council and the consequences of the Council which are contrary to what they affirm in the first two paragraphs where they say that you have to adhere to the Traditional doctrine of the Church! And it is precisely this Profession of Faith which they are going to give to all those who have newly submitted to Rome, and make them sign it. Because this Profession of Faith is meant to be signed by all those who hold any kind of position or responsibility, and all those who are going to receive Holy Orders. All those who want to be ordained will have to sign this formula. It’s a way of making sure that all those who have newly submitted to the Roman authorities will have to submit to the Council and the consequences of the Council.


Thus we see the will of the Roman authorities to make us submit to this spirit of the Council which is a modernist spirit, a liberal spirit, which has destroyed the Church and is continuing to destroy the Church. This is unconscionable! So we won’t accept people saying that we’re “against the Pope” - we’re not against the Pope as Pope, but we’re against the Pope teaching us things that have been condemned by his predecessors! Either we’re with his predecessors who proclaimed the eternal truths in accord with the Church from the Apostles to Pius XII; or we are with the Council and against the predecessors of the current Popes. You have to choose! Obviously Tradition is found with the 250 Popes who came before John XXIII and Vatican II. It’s clear. Otherwise the Church got it wrong for all that time!


That’s the situation we find ourselves in. We have to be clear, decisive and not hesitate. We want to be with the Blessed Virgin Mary, we want to be at Pentecost with the Apostles and the Blessed Virgin in the Spirit of Truth and the Spirit of Holiness, which is the Spirit of the Church, and we won’t change. Whichever authorities it is who want to make us change from this Spirit, we will refuse them. We want to remain Catholic. We don’t want to be liberals, modernist or Protestants.


And the Blessed Virgin Mary will help us, because she is allergic to error. She has a severe allergy towards error and a profound horror of sin, she finds all sin repugnant. Mary favours truth, she despises error, by her nature she is against anything which opposes truth or holiness, regardless of what kind of sin it is, even if it is only a venial sin or just a minor negligence. She is allergic to them because she wants to remain in the Spirit of Holiness and Truth. Let us ask her to transmit to us her allergy.


Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange calls her “Our Lady of Horror.” What does he mean by that? The Blessed Virgin Mary has a horror of error and a horror of sin, this horror is part of her nature. She cannot accept sin or error, because error and sin are the devil's work and we all know well that Our Blessed Lady was born to trample on the head of the serpent, to bring to naught Satan and all his works.


Let us therefore unite ourselves to her and remain always united to her. Thus she will preserve us from sin and all errors and she will keep us in the spirit of truth and holiness.


In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.