Dear Friends and Benefactors,
St. Thomas Aquinas says that it is easier for God to create a new galaxy than to move a human being's free will. Since the Second Vatican Council in particular, churchmen have used their free will almost to destroy the Catholic Church. Surely God is now in the process of allowing souls of good will to learn the hard way that His Church cannot be destroyed. Let us give here a few indications of how the new Conciliar religion is slowly but surely grinding to a halt, while the true religion is slowly regaining strength.
Firstly, the Congress held in Paris one month ago by, mostly, Society of St. Pius X priests and laity, to study the religion coming out of the Second Vatican Council, was an undoubted success. Some 60 priests were in attendance, with some two dozen layfolk, and the large majority contributed a more or less important paper examining some aspect of Vatican II.
It is impossible to pull together in one brief summary the variety of contributions on such a huge subject as, in effect, the wrecking of God's Church by God's own churchmen. What was interesting was the remarkable unity of thinking about Vatican II amongst the variety of contributors. The Society's new French District Superior had been afraid before the Congress that his French priests might all start arguing with one another - where could he have come by such an idea? - but it was the opposite that happened. Everybody agreed that Vatican II was introducing a new humanistic religion, unacceptable to Catholics.
Of course, in a way it was not surprising that priests of that Society which was raised by God in the wake of Vatican II to defend the true Faith, should find themselves all in agreement as to the profound harmfulness of that Council. Nevertheless, the priests' interest and unity in dismantling the Council were reassuring. In particular, the SSPX faithful in France, like, I think, a number of yourselves, were glad to know that their priests were attacking Vatican II, and coming to no soft conclusions about it.
A second indicator of the weakness of the Conciliar churchmen is their on-going interest in talking with the Society of St. Pius X. For decades now they have been pretending that we are "divisive", "disobedient", "schismatic", and, since 1988, "excommunicated", so one would think that our goose had long been cooked, as the expression goes. However, it must be that the Romans still see the goose waddling around, because here is an instance of their coming back to the attack, but with "plausible deniability", i.e. by such channels as will enable them at any time to deny they ever did any such thing. Here is the approach: -
"A crisis is coming in the Church. Things cannot go on like they are now. We want to avoid another long freeze, or war for another 40 years. We want a solution within a very short time. The SSPX has also made its mistakes, but it is in the best situation it has ever been in (!). However, it needs to move a little, from Tradition to transition. Realism requires dialogue, dialogue requires that the two sides meet. Providence will help, if only they do so.
"Pope John Paul II wants a solution. He can make a deal with the SSPX, as his successor will not be able to do. Perhaps Cardinal Castrillon will be the next Pope, but if he becomes Pope he will no longer be able to make the same offer, of a deal which even Archbishop Lefebvre would not have refused.
"Cardinal Castrillon wants to do what is right. He has power, and he has access to Pope John Paul. He can get for the SSPX all it wants, but he cannot change the Newchurch overnight. Let the SSPX visit the new Traditional bishop in Campos, approved by Rome, Bishop Rifan, to see how Tradition can obtain anything it wants from Rome. The offer to the SSPX now is of unconditional approval within weeks".
Now Rome may absolutely - and plausibly - deny that it made any such approach to anyone in the SSPX. However, it seems to me also plausible that such a well-constructed approach is entirely what might have come from Rome. In which case I would reply for my own part to the eminent Cardinal that the one thing which the SSPX wishes for from Rome is the one thing which his channels took care to say he could not provide - an end to the Newchurch cuckoo's occupying the Catholic Church's nest.
Nevertheless, a third indicator suggests that there is perhaps - perhaps - more to this approach by Cardinal Castrillon than meets the eye. It is reported by a Dominican priest from Rome that around the end of last July and the first part of August, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared some dozen times to Pope John Paul II to warn him that the crisis in the Church is going to grow alarmingly worse. The Pope was hurt. She said nothing about events in the world. All prominent figures in the Curia and the Vatican know about these apparitions, but nobody is saying a word. Apparently the apparitions are a serious affair, and not to be shrugged off lightly.
Again, few things are made to seem so plausibly deniable as apparitions of the Blessed Mother of God, but again, an alarming intensification of the crisis in the Church is, in the present situation, all too likely. If then Cardinal Castrillon's apparent desire to re-open dialogue with the SSPX is at all motivated by any such warning from the Blessed Virgin, then we are no longer dealing merely with Roman politics, but we are hearing a stifled call for help.
To which the reply still remains that the SSPX cannot provide the solution by joining in the problem. If anybody thinks - correctly - that the SSPX has its hands on the solution, that is precisely because it has now for decades, without ceasing to belong to the Church, stood away from the Newchurch. As the Newchurch flounders and drowns in mid-stream of the modern world, the greatest service that the SSPX can render to the many victims which it is sweeping away to perdition is to run alongside them on the bank of Tradition, but in no way to jump off that bank into the perilous waters. With all due respect, Your Eminence, you need to move more than a little, from transition to Tradition.
A fourth indicator of the weakness of Conciliarism, or the danger of Vatican II, is the recently appeared book "Animus Delendi II", by Atila Sinke Guimarâes. This is the fifth volume in his eleven-volume series, "Eli, Eli, Lama Sabachtani", documenting the betrayal of the Catholic Faith by the thinkers, writers and leaders of Vatican II. The first and fourth volumes, "The Murky Waters of Vatican II" and "Animus Delendi I" are the only other volumes of the series so far to have appeared. If Mr. Guimarâes after Volume I jumped to Volumes IV and V, it is because he wished to denounce in public as soon as possible the desire to destroy ("animus delendi" in Latin) which truly animated the master spirits of the Council.
Volumes I and IV were briefly presented in this seminary Letter in July of last year. I would like to come back to Volume V in a future letter, because while charity "rejoiceth not in iniquity", it does "rejoice with the truth" (I Cor. XIII, 6), and Mr. Guimarâes has rendered great service to the truth by piling quotation upon quotation to prove how far from the truth Vatican II was pulled by minds seeking to be modern.
The fifth indicator is more positive, giving us the Catholic answer to the apostasy implicit in the ambiguities of Vatican II. It is the book "Marcel Lefebvre" written in a chaste and noble French by Bishop Tissier de Mallerais, one of the Society's four bishops consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre in 1988.
Bishop Tissier was an intimate collaborator of the Archbishop from the beginning of the SSPX in the late 1960's through to the Archbishop's death in 1991. It might then be thought that Bishop Tissier was too close to the Archbishop to have been able to write an objective story of his life. However, this monumental book, fruit of ten years' hard labour, seems liable to remain the most complete biography of the Archbishop for some time to come. It certainly presents the Archbishop as I knew him, with those supreme qualities of godliness, selflessness and objectivity which enabled him to stand up to the raging subjectivism of the modernized churchmen. I will certainly return to this noble book, as soon as the English translation appears.
Dear readers, God's Truth will win. Let us only pray that as many free wills as possible allow it to win them over before they are lost for ever.
With all good wishes and blessings, in Christ,
+ Richard Williamson