Skip to comments."Why I Favor Our Superiors Legalizing Our Situation In The Church"
Posted on 09/11/2003 9:11:20 PM PDT by Theosis
Q. Since you are the first French priest ordained for the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, were you close to Archbishop Lefebvre? How did he inspire you?
A. Yes, I was close to Archbishop Lefebvre. I knew him well and I strongly appreciated him. He was so cordial, pleasant, a great prelate, but humble, simple, thoughtful for those who surrounded him. He had heart. It was difficult to not love him. He had a magnetic per-
Fr. Aulagnier meets with Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos and Bishop Rifan.
sonality. I knew him while during my seminary days at Santa Chiara, the French Seminary in Rome. We were in the midst of the Second Vatican Council in 1964. The seminarians followed, as much as they could, this ecclesiastical event.
The seminary professors often invited a particular conciliar father to spend the evening with us. They were of every tendency. It certainly brought some of us joy to hear Archbishop Lefebvre on the two or three occasions he was invited. Differing from the others, he spoke little about the council. Rather he spoke about the priesthood to which we desired Ordination. Like several of my fellow seminarians, I appreciated his presentation of the Catholic priesthood.
In the midst of the council, everything was changing. In a university seminary, minds react quickly, undergo influences, and seek to understand. We participated at the seminary in all the systematic changes of everything of the common life, of the house rules, of theology, of scholastics. In the midst of this spiritual and intellectual agitation, we needed to be careful, to reflect, to inquire, and to read a lot in order to remain informed.
We painstakingly followed such journals as Nouvelles de Chrétienté, Itinéraires, and La Pensée Catholique to follow the conciliar debates. Without these journals, I do not know if I would be a priest today. Without Archbishop Lefebvre, I certainly would not be. The superiors of the French seminary would not have accepted me. My mind was not open to the proposed novelties.
Our little group of traditional seminarians quickly saw ourselves becoming the object of criticism. When many of us were refused tonsure in 1968, we turned to Archbishop Lefebvre. Having resigned as superior general of the Spiritans, Archbishop Lefebvre was now free to found a seminary in Fribourg, Switzerland. I remember when he approached Bishop Charriere of Fribourg about this project. The bishop accepted it and even encouraged him. The archbishop saw the finger of God.
I became part of the first class of nine seminarians. My diocesan bishop at the time authorized the transfer. Being the most experienced seminarian I already had four years of seminary under my belt gave me the opportunity to become close to Archbishop Lefebvre. During walks, he would gladly converse with us. He even confided in us spontaneously, spoke of his projects, of his priestly ideal, of his hesitations. He often shared his African memories, his memories of the council, his decision to publish his essay, "To Remain Catholic, Must We Become Protestant?"
This essay explains the whole of Archbishop Lefebvre. He hated the modern worlds revolutionary spirit that refused subjection, submission, subordination to a created order, to a divine order. Archbishop Lefebvre had been formed by the thinking of Popes Pius IX, Leo XIII, St. Pius X, and Pius XII. These were his masters. He remained faithful to them all his life. For Archbishop Lefebvre, God as Trinity is everything.
(Excerpt) Read more at thewandererpress.com ...
There is no need to excerpt, unless you're posting from the Washington Post or LA Times.
Most people do not go the link before posting. Like me.
I almost always exerpt. Sooner or later another publisher is going to squawk and make waves for copyright violation. If they want to get real mean and nasty, they can trace my screen name, subpoena the electronic records, and sue me personally. Could happen.
And these Conciliarists have the gall to complain about Priest shortages.
How many of us know MANY Orthodox men driven out of the diocesean and religious seminaries?
I know two. The whereabouts of the third is unknown. The fourth is a priest who feels like he's operating behind enemy lines. They're all between the ages of 40-45.
I wonder what he's been able to do up in Quebec... the NO churches are empty and I didn't see any SSPX chapels... I did run into a schismatic group based on the apparitions of LaSalette - a pretty large organization of very traditionally minded sedevacants who formed in 1962.
It seems that Williamson, an individual who has never in his life been in a normal canonical relationship with the Holy See, is dictating the SSPX position vis a vis the Holy See.
I believe that most of the original SSPXers like Fr. Aulagnier deeply long to be in a normal canonical situation and I also believe that leftist heretics within the Church did them dirt and poisoned their relationship with the Holy See.
The Williamson types seem to rejoice in their material schism and I do not believe that Williamson would ever enter into communion with the Holy See unless Rome agreed to elevate him to the Papacy.
What it boils down to is this: the consecrations were a grave breach of church discipline.
I understand that the SSPX saw them as necessary and I appreciate their reasons.
The fact is that the leftists wreckers in the Church have done everything with plausible deniability and have shied away from such open and definitive breaches with the Holy See. In the case of Kasper, we have a man who has never formally published or declared his heterodoxy. He has only made suggestive statements and written things that could be interpreted into an orthodox sense. He also carefully cemented his influence in the Church in Germany until he had the majority of the German clergy and episcopate clamoring for his Cardinalate.
I agree with you that Kasper is probably a heretic.
The SSPX did not use such underhanded tactics: they simply said "you told us to do x but we need to do y, so we will do y."
The problem now is that Williamson, again an individual who has never been in a normal canonical relationship with the Holy See, has gone beyond the pragmatic action of Abp. Lefebvre.
Williamson is now demanding that the Holy See acknowledge the consecrations as licit - which they were not as a matter of objective historical fact. That is purely so Williamson can score a debating point and so that he can claim a See for himself as a licitly consecrated bishop.
Williamson's desire to be the boss and his overweening personal ambition have little to do with Abp. Lefebvre's reluctant decision to consecrate him.
And these Conciliarists have the gall to complain about Priest shortages. How many of us know MANY Orthodox men driven out of the diocesean and religious seminaries?
I was reading Pope Paul's letter to Lefebvre the other day (it's in the appendix to "The Pope, the Council and The Mass). He claimed that he wanted Lefebvre working together with him within the Church to fight the "deplorable abuses" of the post-conciliar period. Sounds good, but the reality was totally different. Far from being welcomed within the Church, they were deliberately excluded. These priests who still believed the Catholic faith were refused ordination.
At the same time, Archbishop Lefebvre was being kicked out as superior of the Holy Ghost Fathers, one of the largest orders in the world. The article says that he "resigned," but the reality is that there was a coup which re-wrote the constitution of the order so they could get rid of him because he wasn't "updating" at a fast enough pace for the conciliar revolutionaries. Where was the "familial concern" of Pope Paul while this was going on? While the leader of a congregation equivalent to several dozen dioceses was being illegally eliminated, where was the concern of Pope Paul? Yet when Archbishop Lefebvre simply wanted to continue using the Mass of all times, his response was instantaneous and draconian. The reality behind the soothing words is very different from what they would pretend.
Fr. Aulagnier believes that things are different today. Maybe he is right. But this is a prudential decision upon which the consequences of being wrong are enormous.
This is an understatement. His position in French Africa was essentially equivalent to that of a Patriarch - the head of the Churches of many nations, of which he was the founder. He was not merely "another Bishop". This is why his schism is taken so seriously by Rome, as opposed to the ridiculous schisms perpetrated by the sedevacantists, who Rome considers on par with the various American and English "Old Catholic" jokers.
In better times, he would have been named a Cardinal.
Fr. Aulagnier believes that things are different today. Maybe he is right. But this is a prudential decision upon which the consequences of being wrong are enormous.
What is important is that rights of property and succession be guaraneed. With that betrayals in the future cannot be enforced on the ground. This can be done in a Prelature or Apostolic Administration. It can even be done for individual churches in dioceses. The Church "Mater Ecclesiae" in Berlin, NJ, diocese of Camden, was reconciled and canonically erected under the premise that title to the property would remain in the hands of the people. Since the people are in theory free to leave and kick out the Priest and Bishop at any time, they are now happy to stay and be in unity.
Hardly so - they ordain women.
They almost appear like they are living in a time warp.
Putting aside the difficulty that "supplied jurisdiction" claimed in one's own favor is a very complex and dangerous issue in itself, the fact is the SSPX has absolutely no jurisdiction, supplied or otherwise, to stand in judgment over the validity of annulments granted by ordinaries in their own dioceses. Never in the history of the Church has such a usurpation of the local ordinary's authority ever been countenanced.
I disagree the consecrations were grave breaches of discipline.
Then we need to define grave. We are talking here about meddling with the very means of the Apostolic Succession, not dispensing someone from a fast.
This Pontiff is routinely disobeyed by prelates--in matters of far greater importance.
Surely you recognize the inherent weakness of this argument. Just because someone else does something wrong and gets away with it, one is not justified in one's own transgression by theirs.
One can argue that the Holy See has been capricious in its censure - and one would have a point.
But that does not justify disobedience.
Aquinas and Bellarmine both argue that no Pontiff may command what would harm the Church, insisting that disobedience in the face of such a command would be legitimate.
You are reaching here. One could validly argue that appointing Fr. Jones over Parish X is harmful to the Church and that Fr. Smith is a much better candidate for that parish. Almost any action by any Pope could be interpreted as harmful to the Church in some way. Who is to judge? You?
The fact is that Lefebvre did something objectively wrong and disobedient, but he did it according to the dictates of his conscience.
Abp. Lefebvre would gladly have apologized and spent his life in sackcloth and ashes atoning for his disobedience in this matter if the Pope had required it as a condition for preserving the Church's liturgical and theological traditions.
Williamson is unwilling to even admit that his consecration was disobedient.
It is this attitude of Williamson's which excites a visceral repulsion for the SSPX intransigents among obedient Catholics who labor for the preservation of our cultural traditions within the canonical norms of the Church.
To the extent that individual SSPXers follow Williamson's example they will injure the Body of Christ.
They still use the Tridentine Rite, but they resemble in many ways a certain strain of High Church Anglicans who love ritual and vestments and incense and the trappings of liturgy while ignoring doctrinal orthodoxy. The kind of people who would say the Rosary for aesthetic reasons but who would not be overly doctrinaire on the question of whether Our Lord's Virgin Birth actually happened.
These are the St. Jovites we are talking about, right?
I'm absolutely certain. These folks are worthless heretics, founded by a Priest, Michael Collin, who has made himself into a "Bishop" and also "Pope". He has been continually condemned by the Church since 1951 with decrees of degradation, suspension, excommunication, etc. Succeeding him, in a certain way, is his fellow excommunicate John of the Trinity, aka "Pope" John Gregory XVII.
From the summary of Modern Anti-Popes:
Another anti-Pope of the late twentieth century, albeit now deceased, was Michel Collin. Collin had actually been a Catholic Priest and a member of the Order of the Sacred Heart. He was dismissed from the latter and excommunicated from the Church in 1951 after declaring himself to be Pope Clement XV in 1950. Collin established himself and the headquarters of his movement at St. Jovite, Canada.
Collin predicted a world wide catastrophe would occur on February 20th 1969 and when his prophesy was disconfirmed accused his detractors of quibbling over dates.
Among Collins more unlikely supporters at this time were members of a Danish UFO cult called IGAP (International Get Acquianted Program), led by one H. Peterson and inspired by the famous American contactee George Adamski.
The movement started by Collin has had various names over the years including; The Apostles of Infinite Love, Order of the Mother of God, Apostles of the Latter Times, Renovated Church of God and The Order Of The Magnificat Of The Mother Of God.
Clement XV/Michel Collin seems to have retired from the Papacy naming his successor as pope and head of the St. Jovite based movement. This was Gaston Tremblay or Gregory (sometimes Jean Gregory) XVII. Tremblay who took up the Papal mantle in 1968. Collin himself died in 1974.
I encourage you to throw in the trash whatever "literature" you received from them.
In effect, there are signs the Church cannot ignore: the penury of priests, the growing desire among women religious for access to the priesthood, whereas not so long ago they could not have even considered such a desire. It would be wrong to think that ordaining women is an unconditional gesture in favor of "women's liberation" and everything that might imply. The nuns and ladies we have ordained aspired to the priesthood for reasons on a far higher plane than any desire for "equality" or any other prideful motivation. To be able to celebrate Holy Mass, the essential function of the priest: this was their great desire! In instituting the priesthood, Our Lord wanted above all to be certain there would be souls to perpetuate the Eucharist on earth, souls that would apply the infinite merits of His Passion to the world by the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice. In the difficult times we are living in, the Church has need of humble priests, entirely dedicated to the offering of the Divine Victim. Obviously, some will be engaged in a more visible ministry, but a discreet one nonetheless. "The little ones ask for bread, and there is no one to break it for them," declared a Dominican nun, upon requesting the priesthood in the name of many other Sisters. The field of action open to women priests among families, women and children is a boundless one and presently, due to the lack of priests, a very neglected one. ...
Besides the merciful and mighty intervention of the Virgin Priest, it is no doubt the ardent desires and the sufferings of so many Saints that have obtained the priesthood for women. It is now a Will of God. Churchmen who do not understand this should pray on it. If they sincerely desire to know and do what God wills, setting aside their personal feelings and views, they will not fail to receive divine light.
John Gregory XVII
Servant of the Church of Jesus Christ
Sanctuary of the Keys of Saint Peter
Saint-Jovite, June 24, 1994
Feast of Saint John the Baptist
When I got home a few days later, I looked them up on the web. Talk about deceptive advertising... no mention of ordaining women or the other things you mention - wasn't in their printed literature, either.
Ya just never know.
Here's a beautiful picture to liven up your discussion.
Pope John Paul II blesses faithful during an outdoor mass celebrated in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia, on Sept. 12.
Gone long ago when I was still in Quebec. Once I read that they had their own hierarchy, I was done.
Geez and the nuns were in habits, too!
Thanks for the additional info about them. The older I get the more I realize how many weirdos are in the world. I will say I did sense that while I was in their store - not sure why since they only sold devotional material. Just glad I didn't aid their "ministry" at all.
Generally a group like this likes to lead potential converts down a comfortable path for a while before they bring you to a "Mass" celebrated by "Mother" Anne, or explain to you exactly how the UFOs they've documented are signs of the end times.
I thank God for that... it's a little (big) gift that He has given me for years and years - one I didn't recognize it until a couple of years ago. It's saved me quite a few times.
I've probably told you before that I had plane tickets for Medjugorje back about 1987... something happened and I knew I shouldn't go there. Nothing I can explain. Same with the Jesuit and Paulist stuff here in Boston... we were dragged there as kids many times and we all (brother and sister) knew they were all out to lunch.
When I think about all the times that instinct has led me away from bad spiritual things, I feel so humbled. God is so good.
My current pastor attended a very liberal seminary in the 1970s.
I live in the Diocese of Trenton, a very liberal diocese (it is common practice in this diocese to stand during the consecration, for example).
My pastor celebrates the Mass of St. Pius V every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation and on many other feasts (Corpus Christi, SS. Peter and Paul, etc.) besides.
We have Novenas, First Friday devotions, recitation of the Rosary, Benediction, Holy Hour, Forty Hours' Adoration and other devotions.
My pastor will christen, wed and bury his parishioners according to the Rite of St. Pius V whenever he is asked.
We have a Schola he organized for the promotion of plainchant.
Every sermon he gives is based on the the Scriptures, the Fathers and the insights of the saints to which he has special devotion like St. Francis de Sales and especially St. John Vianney.
The CCD is taught according to the Baltimore Catechism.
All this from a priest who was four years old when the Second Vatican Council was convened.
He has done all this without needing to be ordained by Richard Williamson.
He is a living example that God will provide good priests for his Church under the most adverse conditions - with or without the help of the SSPX.
He was the only bulwark against the complete destruction of the old Mass.
The SSPX needs to believe this. But it is not necessarily true. Abp. Lefebvre did an enormous amount of good work for the Church, work which needs to be recognized and acknowledged by many who unjustly scorn the man.
And he did so with a good conscience, for the purpose of saving the Traditional Mass and Traditional Catholicism--not for reasons of malice to defy the Pope.
I agree. I believe that Abp. Lefebvre acted according to the dictates of his conscience as well.
That isn't the point. The point is that the bishops of the SSPX need to recognize the objective fact that their consecrations were irregular and that whatever the circumstances of their consecrations they need to regularize them according to the canonical norms of the Church.
The SSPX is needed as a leaven within the Church - not marginalized outside the Church as a testament to the ego of the Williamsons of the world.
Williamson is not made the excuse, he makes himself the reason why the SSPX cannot move forward.
It is his insistence that the Holy See retrovalidate his consecration that is holding up everything. The Holy See cannot declare his consecration valid without giving a prefabricated excuse for schism to every leftist bishop in the world. He knows this and he is insisting on this point because he knows that if the SSPX and the Holy See reconcile, his three brother bishops will retain their office while he will most likely be laicized.
But any fraternity may have a weak link.
I agree. That is why I, unlike some, do not like to generalize about the entire SSPX due to the actions of a few members.
He has never been representative--and even Rome knows this.
I agree. The question arises: why then does the SSPX defer to Williamson's agenda?
Because if Fellay et al. overruled him, he would create a schism in the SSPX and greatly damage the society.
This is why Hoyos negotiates cordially with the other three bishops, but not with him.
I agree. Williamson has basically told the Holy See that Williamson, who has never been in communion with the Holy See at any time in his entire life, gets to dictate what the Holy See considers valid or invalid.
There is no point in talking to someone who only listens to himself.
BTW, you are very blessed to have the priest that you do.
Believe me, my family and I are very appreciative.
It is a very good feeling to go to Mass on Sunday knowing that there will be no hijinks or surprises - just a solemn, joyous Sacrifice.
Did you ever think you'd live to see the day when Sedevacantist Nuns would publicly celebrate the Tridentine Mass under a Dinvely appointed "Pope"?
The only antidote to this sort of stuff is to read about the nonesense sects produced by the Early Church, like Montanism and Appolonarianism and the like. There truly is NOTHING new under the sun.
There is nothing thought up by dissenters in the 20th century that cannot be found among dissenters in the 2nd-13th centuries, for example. Altar girls, wymyn priestesses, charismatics, judaizing "Christians", gnostics, sexual cults, etc.