ALERT ON THE FSSPX CHAPTER OF JULY A NEW "COUP" FROM THE GENERAL HOUSE IN PREPARATION? Recently, a speaker from the Forum Fidélité catholique francophone raised a "hare", wondering about the scope of the statements made in the German District Bulletin by Abbé Christian Thouvenot, Secretary General of the FSSPX, stationed in Menzingen, concerning the question of the personal Prelature (Latin Door, 16 February). With a view to the next General Chapter in July 2018, Father Thouvenot spoke about this sensitive subject in the following terms: It is likely that the question of the status of personal Prelature will be raised during the Chapter. But it is the Superior General alone who leads the Fraternity and is responsible for the relations of Tradition with the Holy See. Bishop Lefebvre, in 1988, made a point of clarifying this aspect. This surprising statement calls for a triple clarification: The Superior General is not "alone" in leading the Fraternity, especially with regard to relations with the Holy See. In his duties, he has no mandate to represent the whole "Tradition". Lefebvre in 1988 cannot be called upon to reinforce the position of the current authorities of the Fraternity. I - On the first point, it is recalled that the General Chapter is the supreme authority of the Fraternity. He appoints the Superior General and his two Assistants for 12 years (§ V, 1 of the Statutes). This same Chapter is also charged with the essential task of "verifying whether the Fraternity is applying its statutes (...) and striving to keep the spirit of them" (§ V, 2). The elected Superior General enjoys, during his term of office, the broadest powers to govern and administer the Fraternity with the assistance of his Assistants. Together they form the General Council. In addition to these rules, and following the General Chapter of 2006, which had adopted a position of principle "no practical agreement with Rome without doctrinal agreement", the Chapter of July 2012 set out specific provisions specifying the conditions for a possible "canonical normalization" of the Fraternity: in this case, an extraordinary "deliberative" Chapter must be held beforehand, i. e. with decision-making power over the envisaged orientations. Since these provisions have not been repealed, they are still in force: any action in this area therefore requires the Chapter to be convened, fully informed and then deliberated on the content of the project in question (after verification of the six conditions formulated in 2012). The decision voted by the Chapter is binding on the General Council and all FSSPX members. This was declared by Bishop de Galarreta in Villepreux on 13 October 2012: It was also decided in this Chapter that if the General House ever arrived at something worthwhile and interesting with these conditions, there would be a deliberative Chapter, which means that its decision necessarily binds the members of the Fraternity. When there is an advisory chapter, advice is sought, but after authority freely decides. A deliberative chapter means that the decision taken by an absolute majority - half plus one, which seemed reasonable to us - this decision will be followed by the Fraternity ". http://laportelatine.org/vatican/sanctions_indults_discussions/2012_et_sequitur/13_10_10_2012_galarreta_villepreux_relations_rome. php It follows that the Superior General is not "alone" competent to lead the process of standardization with Rome. On the contrary, he has above him a body which is legally "alone" competent to define the position of the Fraternity in a sovereign way! Therefore, Father Thouvenot is seriously mistaken on this point. And since he is supposed to hire the Generalate because of his high office, it is surprising that Bishop Fellay has not already reacted. II - On the second point, it is obvious that the so-called "world of Tradition", with its varied ramifications, religious societies and communities, largely overflows the perimeter of the sole Fraternity of St. Pius X. It is enough to recall Bishop Lefebvre's denials every time we tried to make him "the leader of the traditionalists"! The wording attributing to the Superior General "responsibility for Tradition's relations with the Holy See" is clearly an inadvertent one, and Bishop Fellay could correct the words of his Secretary General on this point as well. III - On the third point, Father Thouvenot incorrectly invokes the Founder to validate the current position of Bishop Fellay as the only one in charge of leading the discussions with Rome. He only forgets that an essential parameter has been changed since 1988, namely that the Superior General was subjected in 2012 - as has been said - to a prior agreement of the Chapter for any canonical normalization of the SSPX. As Bishop Lefebvre had not found himself in a similar position during his talks with Rome, the parallel made by Abbé Thouvenot between the situations of 1988 and 2018... is an anachronism. Bishop Fellay should, once again, correct the words of his collaborator. But he's unlikely to do it... Why? Because Bishop Fellay himself deliberately omitted in recent years to convene and consult the Chapter before accepting the jurisdiction granted by Pope Francis over certain sacraments: · penance and extreme unction at the end of 2015 · ordinations in summer 2016 · marriage in 2017 whereas prior authorization was required, in all cases [of] a "normalization" of the Fraternity's situation, albeit partial but indisputable, was required. Without risking reckless judgment, one can therefore lend him the intention to practice in the same way for the final standardization of the FSSPX which would result from his erection as a personal Prelature. The warning issued by Abbot Thouvenot from Germany, and the aplomb with which he declares the authority of the Chapter transferred to the Superior General, is a disturbing indication in this sense... Assuming that the question of the Prelature is indeed "asked" at the time of the Chapter scheduled for next July, these same statements by the Secretary General imply that the referral to the FSSPX's supreme authority, if it were to take place, would be reduced to a simple "consultation", at best to a "framework deliberation" giving the Superior General the power to deal with the matter, the Chapter being confined to the role of a "chamber of experts". In this way, the substantive doctrinal debate would be dismissed. How can we guarantee in these conditions that the Chapter will be able to fulfil its own mission, that of verifying the conformity of the standardization project with the statutes on the one hand, and with the "spirit" that inspired them by the will of the Founder on the other hand? If this pessimistic (or realistic?) scenario turned out to be correct, and the Chapter, whether in July or in another year, was able to authorize the transformation of the Fraternity into a personal Prelature, the "Copernican Revolution" (J. Madiran) of Bishop Lefebvre's Work would be completed, and the legacy of the great Prelate would fall as a ripe fruit into the hands of the sectarians of Vatican Council II. In the new canonical context in which it would be placed, under the patronage of Pope Francis, what protection could the Fraternity expect from conciliar Rome? If indeed the Superior General (and the Chapter) "forgets" or circumvents the directives given by Bishop Lefebvre after the sacred rites, the statutory constraints of the Society, and the already lightened "locks" put in place on the occasion of the 2012 Chapter, how will the Fraternity be able to demand that the Roman Modernists honour their own commitments when the Fraternity is totally under their legal guardianship? It would be unfamiliar with present-day Rome if we imagined that it would respect the doctrinal and pastoral space of the Prelature, while Bishop Fellay, for his part, took his liberties with the internal rules of the Fraternity and neglected the cautious warnings of the Founder. Who can assure, then, that the FSSPX will not, one day or another, suffer the fate of the Franciscans of the Immaculate? Before the decisive step towards the Prelature is taken and the irreparable is committed, the last hope lies in the capitulants themselves, if they do not discharge their own responsibilities on anyone. In these difficult circumstances, it is hoped that their conscience will be firmly oriented in the ways of supernatural prudence, if they risked a confrontation with those who seek impossible compromises to the detriment of the struggle of faith. We will pray in this sense to Saint Joseph, patron saint of the Universal Church. Correctio Marcelis Source ..