Saturday, January 24, 2009

Excommunications Lifted on SSPX Bishops

EDIT: Several blogs and perhaps even some news outlets are reporting that the SSPX is fully home. This is not the case, but we are one step closer. What has happened is that Pope Benedict lifted the excommunications placed upon the four bishops consecrated without permission of Pope John Paul II in 1988 by Abp Marcel Lefebvre. The SSPX was founded in 1970 and remains in an "irregular" status with Rome. We look forward to a time when the entire fraternal society is brought home and regularized.

This is fantastic news...the excommunications of SSPX bishops have been lifted by Pope Benedict XVI.

It is not available at the Vatican website in English yet, but Fr. Z has it, with comments. He also has several other posts. I'm giving you more links with reactions at the bottom.

The fact that the excommunications on these four bishops were lifted, does not mean that the SSPX is home yet. We have to pray with our brothers and sisters in that society for them to come into complete regularization with the Holy See. This will take some time.

I'm going to give you the first part of it here, then follow his blog for the rest of the decree and, in the same post, the reaction of the SSPX.


By way of a letter of December 15, 2008 addressed to His Eminence Cardinal Dario Castrillón Hoyos, President of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, Mons. Bernard Fellay, also in the name of the other three Bishops consecrated on June 30, 1988, requested anew the removal of the latae sententiae excommunication formally declared with the Decree of the Prefect of this Congregation on July 1, 1988. In the aforementioned letter, Mons. Fellay affirms, among other things: "We are always firmly determined in our will to remain Catholic and to place all our efforts at the service of the Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ, which is the Roman Catholic Church. We accept its teachings with filial disposition. We believe firmly in the Primacy of Peter and in its prerogatives, and for this the current situation makes us suffer so much."
Continue reading Fr. Z's post: Lifted

The comboxes will be interesting to read, as well


EDIT: In related news, Fr. Ray Blake in the UK came across a statement by Bishop Bernard Fellay about a recent interview with SSPX Bishop Williamson, who had denied the holocaust in an interview. See that statement and the interview here.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!