July 2016 - District Superior's Letter

The SSPX puts the battle to safeguard the faith above the need for a canonical recognition. Good will come out of evil, even the great evil of the present day.

Dear Friends and Benefactors,

Last June 26, 27, and 28, all the major superiors of the Society of St Pius X met in Switzerland around our Superior General to discuss the present situation in the Church and of our Priestly Society. A statement was issued on June 29 as a result of this meeting summarizing the discussions held. In short, we are continuing the very purpose of the Society of St Pius X: the training and sanctification of priests, putting the battle to safeguard the faith above the need for a canonical recognition. That is the most important work the Society has to do for itself and for the whole Church, as chaos grows in Vatican circles. Bishop Fellay repeatedly highlighted to us the fact that when he asks Vatican representatives certain key questions, e.g., about the need to accept Vatican II or about the status of our Society, he constantly hears contradicting answers.

We can never say it enough: almighty God knows how to draw good out of evil and the greater the evil He allows, the greater the good He intends. We commonly do not appreciate something or understand it properly unless we lose it. God wants us to appreciate the infinite gifts He has given His poor creatures. Let us look at three of these.

First, consider Our Lady. We know she is the Immaculate Mother of God, Mediatrix of all graces, more powerful than all hell together, and our Mother. But we often fail to truly appreciate Her maternal intercession, until we are in a desperate situation in this vale of tears.

Our Lord confided to Sr. Lucy (of Fatima) that He will not convert Russia unless that nation is consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary by the Pope and the bishops: “Because I want My whole Church to acknowledge that consecration as a triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, so that it may extend its cult later on, and put the devotion to this Immaculate Heart beside the devotion to My Sacred Heart.” (The Whole Truth about Fatima, Vol. 2, May 18, 1936)

As a second example, consider the papacy. Our Blessed Lord established His Church on it: “Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Mt 16:16) “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and they beat upon that house, and it fell not, for it was founded on a rock.” (Mt 7:25) Well, to say it mildly, it does not look very good today with Pope Francis. Who could ever have thought that a successor of Peter would, week after week, say and do such un-Catholic things as he does? It never seems to stop. He his using his own papal authority – although clearly never to the full, never with the conditions of infallibility – to attempt to destroy the very institution of the papacy. “Usquequo, Domine? How long will this go on, O Lord?”

What good came out of the denial of Peter on Holy Thursday night? “And again he denied with an oath, I know not the man.” (Mt 26:72) What did Our Lady think when she heard that Peter had just denied his Master? I am sure she immediately prayed for him and for the Church. She must have thought within herself: “My Son will have to deal with this crisis, it is His Apostle after all; it is His Church…” This Jesus did: on Easter Sunday the Lord appeared privately to Simon, before appearing to the other Apostles (Lk 24:34), and again a few weeks later on the shore of the lake of Capharnaum, Jesus received the triple profession of Peter’s love. Peter and the Church were saved. Our Lord clearly showed that He was the true Head of His Church.

What good then can come out of the confusing and often scandalous statements of the present pope? An immediate good effect is that more and more Catholics are finally waking up to the existence and the cause of this crisis of the Church. It is said that more than 26 cardinals have opposed Francis’ Amoris Laetitia. On what grounds? It is against Scripture and … Tradition! Let us pray that they will have the courage to go to the cause of the problem, to what has led the abomination of desolation to enter in the holy place.

There are no effects without cause. Some people can read the effects in a cause; most people go the opposite direction – back to the cause when they analyze the effects. Archbishop Lefebvre was in the first group, he clearly saw the consequences of the evil principles adopted by Vatican II at the very moment when they were being voted and accepted. One can read in the book A Bishop Speaks, his interventions during the Council on collegiality or religious liberty, for instance. He had incredible foresight. Many others are becoming aware of the problems as Pope Francis detonates the time-bombs laid in the texts of the Council.

A third example of good coming out of evil is the crisis of the sacred priesthood. The priesthood is the sacrament most needed for the whole Catholic Church. You can learn that in the Catechism of the Council of Trent in an affirmative way, and you can see that, a contrario, in a negative way today, with the priestly chaos in the Church. How will we ever come out of the crisis of the Church if we do not have priests? (I am speaking here at the local level, even after the Pope does consecrate Russia.) Who will bring the faith and the sacraments to souls if not the priests? In the old days, the Redemptorists, Vincentians, Jesuits and so many others went all over the world preaching missions. How will we have good bishops without first having well trained, learned and spiritual priests? The worse the present priestly tragedy gets, the more it throws light on the wisdom of Archbishop Lefebvre, who, back in 1969-1970, understood the absolute need to preserve the sacrament of Holy Order at all costs for the good of the Church.

That is why Bishop Fellay says in his statement: “the Society doesn’t seek first a canonical recognition – to which it has a right because it is Catholic.” The solution is far from being a simply juridical one. It is primarily a doctrinal question which we have the grave duty to manifest. The Society absolutely wants to keep the doctrinal, theological and social rectitude centered on the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ, on His Kingship, His sacrifice, His priesthood which is the principle of order and grace. Archbishop Lefebvre fought all his life for the triumph of these fundamental truths. It is our duty at the present moment to continue the same battle on the same principles.

News from the District: On June 29, Fr. Marcel Stannus, from Orillia, Ontario, was ordained priest in Écône, Switzerland. He has been assigned in Calgary. Ad multos annos!

Upcoming events:

  • Bishop Fellay has announced a new Rosary Crusade to prepare the centenary of the apparitions of Fatima. It will go from August 15, 2016 until August 22, 2017. More details later.
  • We are organizing a bus trip to the blessing of the new SSPX seminary in Dillwyn, Virginia, next November 3-6 from St Césaire. For details, contact the district office. (Phone and email address above)
  • Fatima 2017: there will also be a couple of groups from Canada that will go to Fatima for the international SSPX pilgrimage, next August 19-20, 2017. Contact the district office.

Yours truly in Jesus and Mary Immaculate,

Fr. Daniel Couture

District Superior