Feast of St. Joseph the Worker
“Letter to Friends and Benefactors” by the Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Pius X (FSSPX)
The new year has brought us quite a few surprises which are rather unpleasant, not to say dramatic. Obviously we are speaking about events that affect the Church, and not the catastrophes cascading over Japan, nor the troubles in Arab countries and in Africa, which nevertheless should serve as a warning to everyone! But who still understands them in that way?
Yes, much more damaging than any natural catastrophe—with its deaths, tragedies and very painful sufferings—are the catastrophes that wound or kill souls. If people took as much care of their souls as they do of their bodies, the face of the earth would be transformed. But the thing that rightly makes us react and seek healing at the level of the human body—because of the immediate pain that is felt—is almost nonexistent, alas, at the level of our minds. Sin, which causes so much harm to all humanity and to each human being, is perceived only very little, and that is why people do not seek adequate remedies for it. We are talking about a spiritual catastrophe: indeed, what other name can be given to an event that leads a multitude of souls astray? That imperils the salvation of millions, if not billions of souls? Now at least two events, likely to result in non-conversion and therefore the eternal loss of souls, were announced in Rome at the beginning of this year: the beatification of Pope John Paul II and the revival of the Day of Prayer in Assisi on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the first meeting of all religions organized in Assisi by the same John Paul II.
For those who may have difficulty understanding the significance of these two events, we simply quote what was written by Fr. Franz Schmidberger, the first successor to Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre as head of the Society of St. Pius X, twenty-five years ago in this same “Letter to Friends and Benefactors”. In it he made a partial list of the acts performed by John Paul II, the pope who is about to be beatified:
” And on January 25, , the Pope, in a sermon given in the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, invited all religions to Assisi to pray together for peace.”
It suffices to cast a glance over the events of the last three years to see just how close we are now approaching to the establishing of a great worldwide religion presided over by the Pope, having for its one and only dogma the liberty, equality and fraternity of the French Revolution and the Masonic lodges.
1. The new Canon Law promulgated by the Pope himself on January 25, 1983 abolishes the clerical state. Henceforth the Church is “The People of God” in a Protestant and egalitarian sense, without subordinates and without superiors. The hierarchy is no more than “a service” according to the explanation of Pope John Paul II in his Constitution [Sacrae Disciplinae Leges—Ed.], the Church is to be defined as “a communion” and by its “concern for ecumenism.” Canon 844 explicitly allows intercommunion, Canon 204 confuses the priesthood of the priest with the spiritual priesthood of the laity, etc…
2. On Sunday, December 11, 1983, the Pope preached in a Protestant church of Rome after having more or less invited himself to do so.
3. The Bishop of Sherbrooke, Quebec (Canada), has repeatedly invited Protestants into his cathedral for their false ordinations. He himself took part in one of these ceremonies and received “communion” from the hand of a newly-ordained female minister.
4. On February 19, 1984, a new concordat was agreed upon between the Holy See and Italy: henceforth, applying the Council’s Declaration on Religious Liberty, Italy is no longer a Catholic State but a lay State; that is to say, an atheistic State; according to the same document, Rome is no longer the Holy City!
5. On May 10, 1984, the Pope visited a Buddhist temple in Thailand; he took off his shoes and sat down at the feet of a Buddhist bonze, who himself was sitting in front of the altar on which there was a large statue of the Buddha.
6. In their pastoral letter of September 16, 1984, the Swiss bishops came to the important conclusion that “the desire to receive together the same bread at the same table, that is to say, the desire that the Mass and the Supper be no longer separately celebrated, comes from God. However,” add the bishops, “careful thought must be given to the timing of the realization of this desire.” Moreover, they supported a law project to undertake the change of marriage law thereby destroying more or less marriage and the family. Well, thanks to their support, this new marriage law was accepted in Switzerland on September 22, 1985. Once more, the bishops are proving to be the grave diggers not only of the supernatural order but even of the natural order established by God.
7. The French episcopate continues to impose the heretical catechism Pierres Vivantes (Living Stones) for religious instruction to the great detriment of children. “But he that shall scandalize one of these little ones that believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone be hanged about his neck and that he should be drowned in the depth of the sea” (Mt 18, 6).
8. A joint statement by Cardinal Hoffner and Mr. Lohse, president of the German Evangelical Church Council, signed on January 1, 1985, grants to the partners in a mixed marriage the freedom to marry, to have their children baptized and to raise them in either church. Now the Canon Law of 1917, canon 2319, punishes each of these three crimes with a special excommunication.
9. In his book The Ratzinger Report (1985), Cardinal Ratzinger claims that in extreme cases the other religions are “extraordinary” means of salvation. No, your Eminence: Jesus Christ and He alone is the Way, the Truth, and the Life; nobody comes to the Father but by Him!
10. In a note on how to present Judaism in the catechism, published on June 24, 1985, Cardinal Willebrands claims that, like the Jews, we are waiting for the Messiah! And he refers to the Pope’s own words, who stated in front of the Jews on November 17, 1980 in Mainz, that the Old Testament is not yet abrogated.
11. During the summer of 1985, the Vatican sent an official delegate to the laying of the foundation stone of a large new mosque in Rome.
12. In August of 1985, the Holy Father proclaimed to young Muslims in Casablanca that we Christians adore the same God as they do—as though there is a Most Holy Trinity and an Incarnation of God in Islam! A few days later, he went with some animist priests and their escorts to the outskirts of Lohomay, to a cult in the “holy forest” where “the force of water” and the divinized souls of the ancestors are invoked. And at least two times at Kara and Togoville—at Kara just before celebrating Holy Mass!—he poured water and cast corn flour into a dried-out cucumber skin, a gesture professing a false religious belief.
13. A Catholic-Evangelical Commission, set up to close the visit of the Pope to Germany in 1980, declared in its final report published on January 24, 1986, that there are no more divergences between the two confessions as far as justification, the Eucharist, the priesthood and the papacy are concerned. The attentive observer does not fail to notice that the unified ecumenical religion is being openly proclaimed here.
14. And now on January 25, 1986, he called upon all religions to gather together in Assisi to pray for peace. According to the newspapers, the date of October 24, the anniversary of the founding of the United Nations, might be chosen. “What God are people going to pray to, who explicitly deny the divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ? Truly the devil came up with that idea,” commented Archbishop Lefebvre.
15. Lastly, in the course of his journey to India, the Pope spoke only of dialogue and mutual comprehension between religions in order that they promote together human brotherhood and social well-being.
Do you think, my dear friends, that to lay out these things gives us joy? It fills us with grief to write them down, our sole concern being the welfare of Mother Church. Similarly, we are far from wishing to judge the Holy Father—we gladly leave this delicate task to a later judgment of the Church. We do not belong to those who hastily declare that the Papal See is vacant, but we let ourselves be led by the history of the Church. Pope Honorius was anathematized by the Sixth Ecumenical Council because of his false teachings, but no one has ever claimed that Honorius was not Pope. However, it is impossible for us to close our eyes in front of the facts.
And the secret instructions of the Carbonari [Italian Freemasons—Ed.], like their correspondence around the year 1820 are also facts! This is what we read:
The work which we are going to undertake… may last several years, perhaps a century… what we must strive and wait for, like the Jews wait for the Messiah, is a Pope according to our needs…. With that, in order to smash the rock on which God built His Church… we have the little finger of Peter’s successor involved in the plot…. To be sure of a Pope of the kind we wish, we must first of all make him a generation worthy of the reign that we are dreaming of for him…. Get yourself the reputation of being a good Catholic…. This reputation will gain easy access for our doctrines amongst the young clergy…. In a few years the young clergy will in the normal course of things have taken over all functions… it will be called upon to choose the Pontiff… and this Pontiff, like most of his contemporaries, will necessarily be imbued with the humanitarian principles… that we are going to put into circulation.
We must little by little, very gradually, arrive at the triumph of the revolutionary idea through a Pope…. This project has always seemed to me a superhuman calculation.
Moreover, we read in the Little Exorcism of Leo XIII, in its original version:
Now most cunning enemies have filled with bitterness the Church, Bride of the Immaculate Lamb, have made her drink absinth, have laid their wicked hands upon everything beautiful within her. Where the seat of blessed Peter and the throne of Truth was established like a light for the nations, there they have set up the abominable throne of their wickedness, so that having once struck the pastor they might scatter the flock.
What are we to do, faced with this situation which from a human point of view is desperate? Pray, work and suffer with the Church.”
Twenty-five years later, have these words lost their power? One might have hoped, with the coming of Pope Benedict XVI, for a rectification of the situation, since he himself recognized that Holy Mother Church was in a tragic situation. And in fact he laid down a few markers which certainly can foster a restoration, despite much hostility. We have very much in mind the benevolent acts that he performed on behalf of our priestly society, which we remember with gratitude. But the Assisi revival, even though it has been sweetened and modified, which seems to be his intention, will inevitably recall the first Assisi meeting, which was scandalous in so many respects; one of the most noteworthy was the lamentable, distressing spectacle of seeing the Vicar of Christ side by side with a colorful multitude of pagans invoking their false gods and their idols—the placing of a statue of Buddha on the tabernacle of St. Peter’s Church in Assisi remains the most shocking and horrible example [cf., our post “The Great Tribulation“]. When one intends to celebrate the anniversary of such a meeting, by that very fact one rules out blaming the organizer. To an Evangelical Lutheran pastor who protested against this new Assisi, Pope Benedict XVI wrote that he would do everything he could to avoid syncretism. But will somebody tell the participants from other religions that there is only one true religion that saves? Will anyone tell them that there is no other name under heaven by which we can be saved except the name of Jesus, as St. Peter, the first pope, taught? (Cf. Acts 4:12.) These are dogmas of the faith, though!
If the organizers remain silent about such essential truths, they are deceiving the participants! If they hide from them the one thing necessary, unum necessarium, by causing them to believe that all is well this way, because the Holy Ghost makes use of other religions too as means of salvation—even if they are talking about extraordinary means, according to the new magisterium of the Second Vatican Council—then they are leading them into error by depriving them of the means with which to be saved.
As for the beatification of Pope John Paul II, its immediate effect will be to consecrate his pontificate as a whole, all his undertakings, even the most scandalous, the ones described above and others, like kissing the Koran and the repeated ceremonies of repentance that make people think that the Church is responsible for the schisms that have caused countless Christian souls to be lost through separation from our Holy Mother the Church, and through adherence to error and heresy. Practically speaking, all this leads to indifferentism in everyday life, and the few efforts that Rome makes to correct somewhat a course that is so harmful to the Church produce only meager results: the Church herself is anemic.
They will tell us that we are exaggerating, that we are being melodramatic or that we are using tendentious rhetoric; however this dramatic assessment is found even on the lips of Popes Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI. But it appears like a shooting star in the firmament and is quickly forgotten, leaving totally indifferent the multitude that has no concern for look up to Heaven.
What is to be done? For our part what can we do, my dear friends? “Prayer and penance” was the watchword given by our dear Heavenly Mother, the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, both in Lourdes and in Fatima; these celestial instructions are still valid and even more so today than when they were pronounced. Many of you are wondering about the effect of our Rosary Crusade that ended last year. We forwarded the results of it along with our request to the Supreme Pontiff, who has not deigned to reply, not even with a letter acknowledging receipt. But that must not discourage us. Our prayer was sent up to Heaven, to Our Lady, such a kind and merciful Mother, and to the God of Mercies; therefore we do not have the right to doubt that our prayers will be answered, according to the infallible arrangements of Divine Providence. Let us trust in the good Lord. Nevertheless, the situation of the Church and of the world prompts us to ask you insistently not to stop this movement of prayer for the good of the Church and of the world, for the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The intensity of the crisis, the multiplication of all sorts of misfortunes that strike or threaten humanity, demands on our part a corresponding attitude: “We ought always to pray and not to faint.” “Oportet semper orare et numquam deficere” (Luke 18.1).
Therefore it seems to us urgent and more than opportune, given the redoubled intensity of the evils that are swamping the Holy Church, to launch once more a Rosary Crusade, a campaign of prayer and penance. Starting on Easter of this year until Pentecost of 2012, we invite you to join all your efforts, all your strength, so as to make a new spiritual bouquet, a new garland of these roses that are so pleasing to Our Lady, to beg her to intercede on behalf of her children with her divine Son and the Almighty Father. Confusion is only increasing among souls; they are being handed over to the ravaging wolves even in the sheepfold. The trial is so difficult that even the elect would be lost if it were not shortened. The few reassuring developments of the past few years are not enough to allow us to say that things have really changed fundamentally. They give us great hopes for the future, but like the light that one perceives while still in the depths of the tunnel. And so with all our hearts let us ask our Heavenly Mother to intervene so that this terrible trial may be cut short, that the Modernist cape muffling the Church—at least since Vatican II—may be torn in two, and that the Authorities may perform their salvific duties for souls, that the Church may regain her spiritual splendor and beauty, that souls throughout the world may hear the Good News that converts, receive the Sacraments that save, and find the one sheepfold. Ah! How we would love to be able to use less dramatic language, but it would be a lie and culpable negligence on our part to soothe you by letting you hope that things will improve by themselves.
We are counting on your generosity to collect once more a bouquet of at least twelve million rosaries for the intention that the Church may be delivered from the evils that oppress her or threaten her in the near future, that Russia may be consecrated and that the Triumph of the Immaculata may come soon.
So that our prayers may be even more efficacious and each one may derive a greater benefit from them, we wish to conclude by recalling that when one recites the Rosary, the most important thing is not the number of Hail Mary’s, but rather the way in which one prays them. The risk of monotony or distraction can be fought effectively by praying the Rosary according to the instructions of Mary herself: while counting off the Rosary beads, it is a matter of meditating on the scenes from the life of Our Lord and of His Holy Mother and the mysteries that they present. The most important thing is this contact with the life of our Savior, which is established when one thinks lovingly about the events announced with each decade, the “mysteries” of the Rosary. The decades of Hail Mary’s become like background music accompanying and sustaining this powerful, gentle contact with God, with Our Lord and Our Lady. Sister Lucy of Fatima could say, following the popes, that God has willed to confer a very special power on this prayer, so that there is no problem that cannot be resolved by this magnificent devotion. We venture to insist on prayer within the family, which daily gives proof of its efficacy in protecting children and young people from the temptations and appalling dangers of the modern world, which protects family unity in the midst of so many perils that threaten it. Let us not allow ourselves to become discouraged by the apparent silence of Divine Providence after our last crusade. Is it not so that God love it when we prove to Him, in important matters, that we know how to appreciate the true value of what we ask for and that we are ready to pay the price?
As we are about to enter into the Passion of Our Lord, Holy Week and the glorious Resurrection of our Savior, we ask Our Lady to deign to bless your generosity, to take you under her kindly protection and to answer your persevering prayers.
Menzingen, Passion Sunday
+Bernard Fellay, Superior General