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Archbishop Lefebvre: Sedevacantism and Liberalism

Spiritual Conference, Econe, 1984

Basilica - Crack

Translator's Note: Captions and emphasis added.

Same Erroneous Principle, Two Erroneous Solutions

This is more of a conference than a course, because if it were a course, we would have to give several courses and I would need a little more time than I had in order to prepare in detail the courses on a subject that is vast and which of course has very important practical consequences. Ecône's history is sufficiently enameled with events that are consequences of the situation in which the Church finds herself today, a situation which obviously poses a problem, and this problem is certainly unique. It’s the same problem that arises for those who leave us saying that we don’t obey the Pope, as well as for those who leave us because they say that there is no Pope. They both start from the same principle, which is that the Pope cannot [err] in a universal way, in other words, that in his universal acts he cannot err and that he cannot bind the Church in a way that is not in conformity with faith and morals.

So that's the stated principle. Therefore some people say:

Good. There’s the principle. It’s firmly established by Tradition, by theologians, by the doctrine of the Church. Now the Pope publishes acts that are harmful to the Church in the area of faith and morals. So he's not the pope, since he can't do that. So if he's not the pope, we no longer have a pope. That's not difficult [to understand]. So we are free from all the principles that link us to Rome, and so on... We are independent...

Ok, that's one solution. And then there are others who say:

No, it is not possible for the Pope to give us something that is harmful to the Church, in faith and morals, [not even] indirectly or implicitly. Now the Pope is the Pope. So we have to accept what the Pope gives us. And so everything that comes from Rome is good. It's essentially good. There may well be some incidents, some blunders, some little things that are not very good, but it’s still good. The Mass is good. You cannot say that the Mass is bad. It may well be extrinsically evil, because of some extrinsic things, but it does not have a bad principle. The very principles of the Mass are not affected. They are inviolable, since it was the Pope who gave them. The Pope cannot do anything against faith and morals when he speaks to the universal Church, therefore essentially all acts that come from the Holy See are good, so [the new] Canon Law is good. There may be little phrases that we could change, little details, okay, but basically it is good because they cannot give us bad things. End of story, all is clear.

And you, you are contesting [the new] Canon Law, you are contesting the [new] Mass, you are contesting the ecumenical bible, you are contesting everything that comes from Rome in a severe way. Therefore you are in disobedience and we will leave you. We prefer to be obedient.

So they go away and they return to obedience, in other words, [obedience] to liberalism, to progressivism, to the destruction of the Church, to the new Mass, to the new code of canon law...

Erroneous Principle

So what are you going to do? In my opinion, these solutions seem to suffer from too much simplicity. They just pose their principle like that, but they don't study it thoroughly. Such a principle like this one regarding the infallibility of the Church in disciplinary matters and in liturgical matters is nevertheless a principle that comes to us from Tradition. It has not been explicitly stated as such by Our Lord, at least not as explicitly as in Revelation, as the infallibility in faith and morals, which clearly is the direct object of infallibility, so there are no problems there. But there is also an indirect object of infallibility, an object as a complement to infallibility, which is exactly what dogmatic facts are for example. Dogmatic facts that are theological conclusions, these dogmatic facts, the disciplinary and cultural questions of the Church, are therefore the indirect object, which support the primary object that is the object of faith and morals, and which are implied precisely to the extent that faith and morals are also implied in these facts, in their theological conclusions, in dogmatic facts on disciplinary and cultural matters.

Direct vs Indirect Object of Infallibility

So, to identify these, we have the Tradition of the Church, the theologians, the popes in their Encyclicals and in the way they published their decrees concerning these various subjects. So it was concluded, theologians in general concluded, that when the Pope makes a decree for the universal Church and which dealt with the liturgy, with the general discipline of the Church, that the Pope cannot err, that the Pope is infallible.

But if we study things closely, we can nevertheless see that this infallibility, the infallibility in this area, is less absolute than in the primary object which is faith and morals directly.

And so there may be exceptions, there may be cases where the Pope, either by his mode of expression or by his personal affirmations about what he decrees, clearly shows that he does not intend to use his infallibility.

I think it is necessary that we read not just one page on law and infallibility in that well known book of Xavier da Silveira. Indeed, on this subject he draws a general conclusion, i.e. that the Church is infallible in terms of discipline and liturgy. But the thesis does not in any way assert that the law must be as perfect as possible, nor that it should implicitly contain all doctrine on the matter to which it refers, but only deals with the non-existence, in that which the law prescribes, of any implicit or explicit error in faith and morals.

This is the general conclusion of his study of Tradition. But then he rightly adds: it's a thesis to consider in its nuances.

A Thesis to Consider in It's Nuances

As we have seen, the thesis according to which the disciplinary and liturgical decrees promulgated for the universal Church are always guaranteed of infallibility, seems to receive the total support of Tradition.

However, before we continue to ask ourselves whether there are any contrary testimonies in Tradition, it seems that we can and must doubt that the thesis of infallibility in disciplinary and liturgical decrees has the magnitude that some theologians think they can attribute to it.

All right, you have to complete [reading], you don’t just read one sentence, you have to read everything. So a little further on he brings this up again.

Before considering the concrete case of the Novus Ordo, we will restate the principles set out so far and clearly state the matter of the question.

First, we have seen that, in general, neo-Scholastic textbooks consider as theologically certain the thesis that the universal laws of the Church, including liturgical laws, engage infallibility. Secondly, we then showed that this thesis has, or seems to have, a solid support in Tradition. Thirdly, we pointed out that, despite the testimony of Tradition which has been alleged, there are also serious reasons, both doctrinal and historical for us, to doubt that universal laws always and necessarily imply the infallibility of the Church.

We noticed that this doubt has a support in Tradition because in many documents there are hesitations, restrictive expressions, about the thesis of infallibility in disciplinary and liturgical matters.

There is this danger, you see, of always taking certain truths that need to be explained and interpreted by the conditions under which the principles are developed, and of then denying these conditions, of denying, I would say, the historical conditions of the application of these principles and of thinking only of the principles in themselves, and of drawing conclusions without any concern for the historical conditions in which we find ourselves.

A Liberal Spirit is Incapable of Binding

However, there is one thing that caused us to be here, that is the cause of our resistance, and that is the fact that we’ve had three Liberal popes. What do you want me to do about it? It's not my fault! You may say: “Oh! You exaggerate, that's not true, that's not possible!” I wish I was exaggerating, but we have Pope John XXIII, Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II, and they are liberals. They have a liberal spirit.

What is a Liberal spirit? It is a mind that is in complete confusion, in total confusion... They are not clear-minded. They don't want to define things. They don't want to see with clarity. It is a spirit that rejects theological clarity, the clarity of principles, the logic of principles. It bothers them because, for them, on the one hand, they would like to be absolutely in conformity with this clarity of the Church's faith, historical, and of all time. Such is an established truth that doesn’t change any more, applying for always, accepted for good. They would like to be able to say that. But on the other hand, they do not want to contradict modern ideas, ideas of evolution and ideas of the modern world, backed by this Masonic spirit that does not want dogmas, that does not want definite truth. “There are no definite truths, either natural or supernatural truths. It's always changing. We're still looking for the truth. Everybody's looking for the truth. We will never reach the truth, but we must always be in search of the truth. So in order to please the world, we must accept that also in the Church there is no definitive, absolutely definitive truth; there is always a more or less way to interpret this or that... There is no definitive truth.” So they are terribly confused and contradictory minds that are in constant incoherence.

So how do you want minds like these to promulgate acts which they themselves consider final and which oblige all the faithful to adhere to in a definitive way? They cannot do things like that. That is why they have always had restrictions in their comments, their letters, their formal communications, either in a consistory or in a public meeting. It seems to me, I haven't had time to find the document, that Pope John Paul II, on the occasion of the publication of the new Canon Law, in alluding to this the Law, said: “It's an essay, it's a stage, this Canon Law”. Again: evolution!

Prime Example: Bugnini

All the liturgy has been given as evolutionary, as susceptible to creativity, as susceptible to further evolution... It is enough to read the principles of our friend Bugnini, in his book that you now have in the library, La Reforma liturgica, by Annibale Bugnini, a huge posthumous book, but which was directed by Msgr. Bugnini himself. So I invite you to read on page 50: Actiora principia, the principles that have been those of liturgical reform, the great principles, the principle of principles, which have given the direction of the new liturgy. I assure you, this is really instructive. It is necessary to read these things so that we know what the thinking of those who were the legislators was. After all, who was the legislator for the [new] liturgy? Clearly it's Bugnini. Bugnini was the author of the new liturgy. As Cardinal Chicognagi said: “he can go to the Holy Father and make him sign whatever he wants, whenever he wants.” Well, yes, because the Holy Father had complete confidence in Bugnini. How, why, I don't know all this, but it is a fact, he had complete confidence with the liturgy. He put him in charge of the liturgical commission. He even gathered [them] under his authority, practically as secretary for the Congregation for Divine Worship, and the Congregation for the Discipline of the Sacraments which he abolished and reunited with the Congregation for Divine Worship. Therefore he was all-powerful on Worship and Sacraments, this Msgr. Bugnini. The Pope trusted him completely. He is the author of this normative mass. And he didn't hide this, he said it himself. He told us, the Superiors General gathered together, when he was explaining his normative Mass to us. So what are this man’s principles?

Liturgy and theology form prayers. In them, through sensible signs, the sanctification of man is signified and realized, and thus implemented, by the mystical Body of Christ, leader and member (attention!) leader and member, the totality of public worship!

See immediately the idea: there are no longer only priests, not just the hierarchy, offering worship to which the faithful join themselves. No: “implemented, by the Mystical Body of Christ, leader and member, the totality of public worship.”

In the fourth paragraph: Manifestations of the Church:

In the liturgical celebration, when all the people of God gather to participate fully and actively in the same action, around the same altar, united in prayer, the greatest manifestation of the Church is realized.

See this idea is always: the people of God, the worship rendered to God, the participation of the whole Mystical Body, priest and faithful, and everyone, leader and members.

And because it is a ‘sacrament of unity’, the liturgical actions belong to the whole body of the Church. This is why such community celebration must always be preferred to individual celebration.

That's Protestantism! Luther couldn't have said it better! It's the same thing. This is the death of private masses. It's all over!

In it the nature of the Church must appear, communal and hierarchical. All participate, but each one fulfills his or her responsibility according to the ministry received [so everyone has received a ministry!] ..and the liturgical rules. The path opened by the Council is intended [listen carefully!] is intended to radically change the face of the traditional liturgical assemblies in which customarily the liturgical service is carried out almost exclusively by the clergy. The people too often attend as strangers and silent spectators.

These are Bugnini's ideas. They’re false, they’re based on a lie, a historical lie, and a real lie. To say that these faithful who were there for centuries before Bugnini ever existed, that they participated in the Mass in a silent way and as strangers, all those people who sanctified themselves through the Mass, all these Christian families who are sanctified by the Holy Mass and by all the liturgical services! As if it were necessary for these people to shout or to clap their hands and express their sensitive participation in order to participate in the Mass! That spiritual participation is not much more important than external participation! Is it not precisely spiritual participation that is the true participation of the faithful? This work of education must make it clear that the liturgy is an action of all the people of God.

You see, this is a serious mistake. There's a heresy underneath it. Underneath it... I’m not saying that it is formally heretical, I’m saying that underneath it there’s a heresy. It is [the claim] that the priesthood of the faithful and the priesthood of priests is the same, that everyone is a priest and that all the people of God must offer the sacrifice of mass. This is the same mistake we find in the new Canon Law.

So, when you see these things, when you read these things, you say to yourself that there is something wrong with the Church. What do you want me to do about it? I'm not the one who's making this up. There's something not quite right, something that’s wrong.

So then, what did the Church do for twenty centuries? What does the Church think of herself? What idea does she have of herself? And yes, they said it, and they repeated it over and over again during the Council: “the Church must now become conscious of what she is, of the new vision she must have... of the new conception she must have of herself!” What must we think of these Fathers of the Church, these bishops, these theologians who said such things?

So... [they say that] a long work of education will have to make it clear that the liturgy is an action of God's people and the consequences will not only be liturgical, but will have a beneficial effect on the development of the sense of the Church and the birth of the various ministries at the service of the community. Various ministries that are now given to the laity... This is why each one has his ministry because each one exercises his priesthood.

No More "Rigid Uniformity"

Fifth paragraph: unity in substance and not rigid uniformity.

Obviously, the rigid uniformity, that's aimed at us! Unity in substance, you'll see what kind of unity in substance!

We must recognize that this principle represents a real break with the past. For centuries the Church has wanted that in the Roman rite worship happens with perfect uniformity. The two liturgical reforms - at least they were clear! They did not deceive people, like [today] when many bishops say: "But there have been other reforms in the Church. This is not the first reform, this Vatican reform. There was that of St. Pius V, and there was the Gregorian reform in the 8th century"... - these two liturgical reforms, that of the 8th century and that of the 16th century, had precisely this purpose (this perfect uniformity). The six liturgical books published in the typical edition from 1568 to 1614 were for four centuries the Church's prayer code, which no one was allowed to add to or take away from.

In 1587, Sixtus V established the Sacred Congregation of Rites as the supreme organ for the conservation of sacred rites. (Not for the change of sacred rites: for the conservation of sacred rites). And the seven volumes that gather about 5,000 decrees from this Dicastery up to the present day bear witness to the scrupulous care with which that supreme authority defended the law of the unique form of prayer for the whole Church.

5000 decrees!

Nevertheless, he [Bugnini] decided that today the social, religious and cultural conditions have changed so much. That people are in the process of developing and opening up to the light of the Gospel, that they strongly feel the need not to abandon what constitutes an authentic expression of their own soul and a heritage often still untouched – as a matter of fact!... - linked to deeply rooted usage and customs.

With five or six sentences, the whole past is sent packing, and Bugnini invents his normative Mass and the whole liturgy is overturned, and it is necessary to adapt the liturgical language to all peoples, to suppress the liturgical language... It is frightening!

A New Definition of Tradition

We see once more these principles on the subject of untainted tradition and legitimate progress, in chapter six:

It has been written that true Tradition, in great things, is not to redo what many others have done, but to find the spirit that caused things to be done [in one way] and in a completely different way in different times.

Like this, we can do anything! It is enough to find the spirit of Tradition, which would do things completely differently in other times! This is what he calls Tradition!

Recovering the spirit, a work of research - sure! It is a question of revision, natural spontaneity, study, meditation, prayer. To rediscover the spirit and make it speak to the rite the language of our own time, so that today's man can understand that language, which once used to be mysterious and sacred..

With that, it's all over, we can do whatever we want! That is the spirit in which these Liberals talk and act. So he [Bugnini] practically imposed his reform on Paul VI. Why do I say “imposed”? Because Paul VI himself criticized it. He criticized Bugnini's reform. He criticized, in particular and publicly, the absence of the exorcism [prayers] in baptism. He said "I don't know why the exorcisms of baptism were removed.” And, secondly, he also expressed regrets about the change of the Offertory in Mass.

Abnormal Times

From John XXIII onwards, we can say that we are no longer in a normal time of the Church. We no longer have normal popes, popes who have this clear vision of principles, of faith, of Tradition, of their duty... of their duty, which Pope Pius IX said about the First Vatican Council, the duty of “non proponere doctrinam novam neque ex cogitare revelationes, sed revelata exponere et custodire.” [For the Holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter not so that they might, by his revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by his assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation or deposit of faith transmitted by the apostles.] And the popes have always condemned the comparison that could be made between human science and the science of faith. It's not the same thing. As much as human science can evolve and progress, the science of faith progresses only in its definition, in its expression, but not in its substance. Because revelation was completed after the death of the last apostle and it is then the role of the Church to define, from the death of the last apostle to our time, to define what is in revelation, that is all. And keep revelation, keep the deposit.

Yet, this is one idea that these liberal popes, and all these liberals do not have, this permanence of revelation, this immutability of revelation, [instead] they always talk about progress, the adaptation of mankind to modern things...

So if these popes give us something, the acts they give us are not given... I conclude that these acts which come to us from Rome, which come to us from those popes who, once again, are surrounded - for it is Rome which is occupied by liberalism, it is not only the Pope who is liberal. He is surrounded by people even more liberal than himself. So there is a whole group in Rome now, which did not exist in the past, and which cannot give us laws in the same way the popes used to give us before, because they no longer have the true Catholic spirit on this subject. They do not have a clearly Catholic conception of infallibility, the immutability of dogma, the permanence of Tradition, the permanence of Revelation, or even, I would say, doctrinal obedience. With all that pluralism they always talk about, and then this religious indifference, see, this tendency to want to make almost part of the Church all those who make some reference to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Blurred Lines

So the limits of the Church become blurred. They no longer have a clear definition of the Church. Everything becomes blurred. We don't know where it ends anymore. As Cardinal Weismann, whose letter was read to you, said, there are no longer limits to the Church.

So all these notions that they have, you see, prevent them from defining acts with exactly the same conditions and the same approach as the popes did in former times. It seems to me that is clear. And that is why we are all in an unbelievable confusion.

So if we want to reason with the same logical principles of yesteryear, principles, I’d say, that have always been used, a principle like “the Pope cannot give us anything contrary to faith and morals, not even implicitly, in liturgical acts and disciplinary matters”, then we must choose :

  • Either there is something bad in what they gave us, and so they are not popes.

  • Or they are popes and therefore we must obey, and that’s it. There is no intermediate situation

But that's not true. That is not true. We are faced with a new situation in the Church because of the introduction of this liberal and modernist spirit into the higher levels of the Church. That is a fact. No one can deny that. The modernists and liberals have no conception of the Church, nor of infallibility, nor of the obligation of infallibility, nor of faith itself, of the immutability of faith, which is that of the Church, which is that of the Church herself.

Essentially Incoherent

So if we ask them each question in particular, they will say “oh yes, oh yes, we believe like the Church does..”, but in reality, no, they don't act like they have that faith. And this is typical for the Liberal, as defined by Cardinal Bio: “The Liberal Catholic is essentially incoherent.” What does incoherence mean? Well, he says one thing, but he does the opposite. He says one thing, but in practice he has other principles. So he is in a continuous inconsistency.

That's what causes these popes to be double-faced in a way. This was said very explicitly of Paul VI, but it may as well be said of John Paul II. Double-faced. So at certain times, [they have a] Catholic face: “But of course, look there, the Pope is traditional, he does this, he does that..” But then a little later we see the other face, with his ecumenism, with religious freedom, with human rights and all that..

So how do we reconcile all this? This is why Pope Pius IX dared to say that the Church's worst enemies were liberal Catholics. He’s very harsh on them, this Pope Pius IX. You will find this in the quotations, in Fr. Roussel’s little book on Liberal Catholicism. There are many quotes from Pope Pius IX about Catholics, quotes that are not found in the official acts of Pius IX. He evidently took them from Roman documents, but regardless, they’re all from Pope Pius IX, but these are documents that one can't find, that one can hardly find anywhere else. He is very hard on Liberal Catholics. And we must understand - while not saying that they are all excommunicated, that they are all heretical, no... he could have said that, Pope Pius IX, but he did not say that “all liberal Catholics are heretics, all liberal Catholics are excommunicated.” No! [Neither did he say that] “they are the worst enemies of the Church, therefore he should excommunicate them anyway and say that they are schismatic” No, for the exact reason that they are always borderline, sometimes they affirm their Catholic faith, and later on they destroy the Catholic faith with their actions. They share common ground with the enemies of the Church...

There's nothing worse than that! This is the worst misfortune that can befall the Church, this kind of continuous betrayal, continuous back and forth...

Pope Honorius

So we find ourselves in historical circumstances like these. What can we do about it?

When Pope Honorius was condemned, he was condemned as Pope. And yet, the Council of Constantinople – I believe it was Pope Leo II, although I’m not sure - condemned Pope Honorius for favoring heresy. He didn’t say “he favored heresy, so he was no longer the Pope.” No. And neither did he say "since he was the pope, you had to obey him and accept what he said.” No, because he condemned him! So what did [Catholics] have to do then? Well, one had to admit that Pope Honorius was the Pope, but one did not have to follow him because he favoured heresy!

Isn't that the conclusion then? That seems to me the normal conclusion. Well, we're in that situation. One day these popes will be condemned by their successors. One day the truth will return. It is not possible, this error which is truly at the base of the whole [new] liturgy, the principles of the [new] liturgy and the principles of [new] Canon Law, that the Church is defined by all the people of God who participate in the priesthood of Our Lord, and that each one, according to his ministry, fulfills his duties in the Church... This is the confusion of the Church! The confusion of the priesthood!

They Say One Thing, They Do the Opposite

So they say “but look here, in the Council..”, and so they speak of the Council, so the Council says explicitly that “there is an essential difference between the priesthood of the faithful and the priesthood of priests.” This is explicitly stated in the Council, in the Constitution of the Church. But beware, continue reading the Church's document and you will see that in the following pages it is total confusion. They mix everything, the priesthood of priests and the priesthood of the faithful. That is what's inconceivable, you see!

In the document of religious freedom, you will find it stated that “this doctrine changes nothing of traditional doctrine.” So you will say to me that “therefore this scheme is in conformity with the traditional doctrine since it is explicitly stated in the decree..” Ok, but in the whole decree, everything is contrary to traditional doctrine! That's how it is! We can’t fault them like that: “What did you say? That Canon Law, the definition of the Church, the priesthood of priests, the priesthood of the faithful is mixed, and there are no more distinctions?... But take the clerics [for example]... There are still clerics, and clerics are always well defined in the new Canon Law, and they do say that the priesthood of the faithful is different from that of clerics.” Yes, they do say that, and they can tell us that if we object to them, but in practice they will act, both in the liturgy and in the whole of Canon Law, they will act as if there is no distinction. That is what is scary.

The munus docendi [duty to teach], the munus sanctificandi [duty to sanctify] is now given to the people of God, and not only to priests! But regardless, it was Our Lord who said to the apostles "go and teach”. The munus docendi, there is indeed the Ecclesia docens and the Ecclesia dicens. All the same, there is this distinction, which has always been there in the Church, until now. So now, no, it's over, it's all Ecclesia docens, since the munus docendi is clearly in Canon Law, it's given to all the people of God! So where's the Ecclesia dicens? She disappeared...

Munus Docendi, Santificandi, Regendi

So, in this article of the Osservatore Romano, of 17 March 1984 you will find this: “The role of the laity in the new law.” Incredible, incredible!

It is with the same contempt that they treat the past, the same contempt as Bugnini who said: “They were passively present, the faithful at Mass, etc.” Here it is the same thing:

The new Law poses problems for canonical doctrine and raises questions, fundamental problems on what the constitution of the Church is, in the determination of which, in the recent past, the legal figure of the laity “appariera assai sfumata” - I don't know if you guess, the term itself is very... like a kind of... who will translate it for me? there, the Italians... - the legal figure of the layman appeared rather vaporous... sfumata... as a smoke... even non-existent....

The laity were therefore non-existent in Canon Law. But all Canon Law has been made for the faithful! All that was said for priests was to sanctify the faithful! So, because there were not more pages on the laity than on priests and the hierarchy of the Church, so then “the laity were fuzzy and practically non-existent.” That's unbelievable!

So really, they can imagine that for twenty centuries the Church has made rules, the Church has had a Law, the Church has promulgated a magnificent Canon Law, promulgated by the Holy Pope Pius X, and all the rest, and then the laity, the faithful did not exist! When did you ever read such things? In the Osservatore Romano, in the official journal of Rome, of the Church!

So now, on the contrary, the new Canon Law is in the context of an image of the Church – at that time, it was still the image of the Church, and seemed to uniquely coincide with that of the hierarchy. – ..

As if the Church consisted only in the hierarchy! In a way, this is somewhat true, according to the definition of the Church that Pope Pius X gave: "The Church is composed of clergy and lay people, and the clergy are responsible for sanctifying the laity, teaching and directing them". It is true that powers and duties are given to the clergy. The good God wanted it so, for the sanctification of the laity, for the spiritual uplifting of the laity, and not for the pleasure of the clergy itself. That's clear, so that's perfectly normal.

Then there is only one thing that bothers them a little bit, in the total assimilation of the laity and the clergy, so for the munus docendi, the parents teach their children and everyone teaches... So everybody teaches, not only the clergy, but also the laity! For the munus sanctificandi, and well now the laity give communion, even lay people can preach eventually, so there is also the munus, both docendi and sanctificandi.

And finally, munus regendi [duty to shepherd], it's a little more complicated for them to give that! They don't really want to share power with the laity... He says so explicitly:

For munus regendi, it's a little more difficult. “Si pensi solo a fare un exempio”, as an example obviously there are things that are not yet quite adapted in Canon Law... “al delicato problema dei repororti a ordine sacro e munus regendi in relatione ad ad eventutuello titolarita di uffici comportanti di potesta juridictione della parte dei laïci”.

So there’s a difficulty here. It is a bit complicated to think that we could give the laity power of jurisdiction. But finally, that too will come... They'll find a solution!

Judging in Exceptional Context

See, I think that's where our whole problem lies. We live in an exceptional time. We cannot judge everything that is done in the Church according to normal times. We find ourselves in an exceptional situation, it is also necessary to interpret the principles that should govern our ecclesiastical superiors. These principles, we must see them in the minds of those who live today, those principles that were so clear in the past, so simple, that no one was discussing them, that we did not have the opportunity to discuss them, they fail, I would say, in the minds of the Liberals, in the minds, as I explained to you, that have no clarity of vision... It changes the situation. We are in a situation of unbelievable confusion. So let's not draw mathematical conclusions like that, without considering these circumstances. Because then we make mistakes:

  • Either we endorse the revolution in the Church, and participate in the destruction of the Church, and we leave with the progressives

  • Or we leave the Church completely and find ourselves where? Who with? What with? How would we be linked to the apostles, how connected to the origins of the Church? Gone... and how long is this going to last? So if the last three conclaves should no longer be considered valid, as those in America say who have consecrated their own bishops, and if then there is no longer a Pope, and if are no more cardinals either.. ? We don't see how we could once more obtain a legitimate pope... No! That's a complete mess!

So it seems to me that we must stay on this course of common sense, and of the direction which also agrees with the good sense of the faithful, the sense of faith of the faithful, who in 90% of the cases follow the orientations of the Society and would not understand either one or the other.

They don't want to go over to the progressives and then go to the new Mass and accept all the changes. That, they don't accept at all, saying that if anyone is so inclined, let them go then, but we don't want to. We remain as we are now, we want to keep Tradition. But neither do we want to separate ourselves completely from the Pope, [saying] "There is no longer a pope, there is no longer anything, there is no more authority, we don't know to whom we are attached, there is no more Rome, there is no more Catholic Church". That [solution] doesn’t work either. They are lost too, they feel lost, they are disoriented.

Sensus Fidei

So they keep this sense of faith, the sense that Providence gives to the good faithful and to today’s good priests, [this sense] to keep the faith, to stay put, to keep their attachment to Rome as well and to remain faithful to the apostolicity, to the visibility of the Church, which are essential things, even if they do not follow the Popes when they favour heresy, as Pope Honorius did. He's been convicted. Those who would have followed Pope Honorius at that time would have been mistaken since he was condemned afterwards.

So then, I believe that we would be misled in actually following the Popes in what they are doing... but they will probably also one day be condemned by the ecclesiastical authority.

God Does Not Bless Liars

I would like to insist on those things. It is difficult, I recognize that this is a truly painful situation, but it is unfortunate to see our confreres acting, I would say, so lightly and certainly those American confreres who have left us with a disloyalty that is inconceivable and beyond imagination: deceiving us right up to the moment of their priesthood, to sign commitments, to promise to remain faithful to the Society, to promise me obedience when I ordain them... and 48 hours later, saying goodbye and then leaving us [saying] “I don't know you anymore!” I think that these priests live in a state of continual mortal sin! It's not possible, you can't renounce your word like that, at that point, for such sacred things as ordination! To steal the ordination in a way, by a continuous lie, by continuous disloyalty, until the last minute, until the very moment of ordination, to say "yes" to the question "do you accept obedience?", and 48 hours later, to leave. It is not possible! In front of God, that's not possible! That's such a lie! God cannot allow things like that and bless such situations! That's not possible!