The Good Sisters and Schism
In our church, it pays more to rebel than to faithfully question. The Vatican, under Benedict XVI, is doing somersaults to get the excommunicated, anti-semitic Lefebvrists back into the church’s tent. First the Vatican said that the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) had to agree to accept the teachings of the Second Vatican Council, which they reject as heretical, before any deal could be made. But then (flip!) maybe not. The SSPX leader, the illicitly ordained bishop, and recently un-excommunicated Bernard Fellay, has been telling the press that Rome no longer makes total acceptance of the teachings of the Second Vatican Council a pre-requisite for SSPX’s full reconciliation with the church.
But what parts of the teachings of the Second Vatican Council will SSPX get to pick and choose? I bet some of those teachings they want to get rid of are those crazy Vatican II decrees on the priesthood of the laity (Lumen Gentium), on the rights of Christ’s faithful (Lumen Gentium and Gaudium et Spes), and certainly those nutty things the Council said about the liturgy (Sacrosanctum Concilium), about religious liberty (Dignitatis Humanae) and the unacceptability of ant-semitism (Nostra Aetate). Fellay has been quoted as saying, “Some claim that in order to work safely in the church, she must first be cleansed of all error. This is what [our members] say when they declare that Rome must convert before any agreement, or that its errors must first be suppressed so that we can work.” So now it is SSPX (flip!) that gets to tell the pope what he needs to believe?
And what is even more troubling in this bizarre roundelay is that it is the Vatican that is pursuing the Lefebvrists, and not the other way around (flip!). It is incontrovertibly true that the Vatican took the first steps here. Why is the true church pursuing these schismatic heretics and making deals with them about what church teachings they need to or don’t need to accept? The Vatican’s most recently-floated idea is that it would be willing to grant the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) the canonical status of a personal prelature, similar to Opus Dei (flip!). Like I said, somersaults. But only for the rebels, not for the faithful questioners. [more]