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TWO LETTERS, TWO ORIENTATIONS


By His Excellency Bishop Thomas Aquinas, OSB


10th February 2024



Three bishops wrote to their superior about the danger of a purely practical agreement with Rome, and appealed to their founder, Archbishop Lefebvre. — He was right 25 years ago; he's still right today — they said.


To this warning, the superior replied that the three bishops were devoid of supernatural spirit and a sense of reality. A serious accusation that could have fallen on Archbishop Lefebvre himself. But is it true? Wouldn't it be the other way round: Bishop Fellay lacked these two qualities? That's the whole point. Who lacks realism and the supernatural spirit? It wasn't Archbishop Lefebvre. Neither were the three bishops who appealed Archbishop Lefebvre's example. They said that the situation at the time (2012) was not substantially different from 2006, when it had been decided not to make practical agreements without doctrinal agreement. They warned of the danger of putting themselves in the hands of the conciliar bishops and modernist Rome. Unrealism? Lack of supernatural spirit? They wanted to preserve the Society from the deep divisions that could occur. Lack of a sense of reality? of a supernatural spirit? They drew the attention of the Superior General to the modernist thinking of Benedict XVl. They noticed symptoms of a decrease in the confession of the Faith. Unrealism? Lack of supernatural spirit?


Archbishop Lefebvre spoke of the spiritual AIDS of modernist Rome. Bishop Fellay doesn't seem to think in the same way or take the same precautions. He minimises the seriousness of the Council's errors. For him, Religious Liberty has become a very, very small liberty. The Council, something about which many think it said what it didn't say. Who are these "many"? The three bishops? He accuses them of treating the errors of the Council as if they were superheresies.


If we compare Bishop Fellay with Archbishop Lefebvre, the difference is clear. Archbishop Lefebvre spoke of Rome's apostasy. Bishop Fellay minimises the situation and seeks a dangerous rapprochement with modernist Rome, with or without agreement.


What have been the fruits of Bishop Fellay's supposed superiority, that is, of being more realistic and supernatural than Bishop Williamson, Bishop Tissier and Bishop Galarreta? Were the fruits sweet or bitter? Let everyone judge for themselves.


Great commotion in the Society; a change in the principle governing relations with Rome (practical agreement only with doctrinal agreement or practical agreement without doctrinal agreement); the departure of priests who left the Society, including Fr Faure; the expulsion of the Society's most combative bishop (Bishop Williamson); the expulsion of priests; the perplexity of priests who, despite staying in the Society, did not approve of the new policy initiated by Bishop Fellay; disorientation among the faithful; alienation from some friendly communities; reservations on the part of others; acceptance of compromising measures that he took with regard to the society, even going so far as to accept the new dispositions with regard to marriages, causing the reaction and dismissal of seven French deans and the reaction of three friendly communities; etc. Good fruit? No!


What can we conclude? There are two orientations in Tradition: that of Archbishop Lefebvre and that of Bishop Fellay, at least that of Archbishop Fellay as Superior General. Since Bishop Fellay has never recanted, we can assume that he still thinks this way.


We follow Archbishop Lefebvre's and are grateful that Bishop Williamson resisted Bishop Fellay. Thanks to Bishop Williamson, the Resistance can continue the fight with the holy liberty of the children of God to defend Tradition and pass it on according to the example Archbishop Lefebvre gave us: "Tradidi quod et accepi". I have passed on what I have received.

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