How Can We in Good Conscience Recognize the 'Validity of the Novus Ordo Indult?'
The Angelus - July 1985

Ask Me...
answers given by Father Carl Pulvermacher

Q. To have the Tridentine Mass said in the Archdiocese of Portland one requirement is: "The recognition of the validity of the New Order of the Mass as promulgated by Pope Paul VI by those who request that the Mass be celebrated . . ." In view of the decree by Pope St. Pius V that the Tridentine Mass can never be legally revoked or amended . . . how can we in good conscience recognize the "validity of the New Order"?

A. In truth we cannot. Even if we might agree that the New Order Mass is substantially valid we cannot agree that it is a valid substitute for the immemorial Mass, the Tridentine Mass.It is Protestant in its form, teaching by its words, actions, and omissions a strikingly Protestant theology. Compared to Cranmer's and Luther's liturgies, it is surprisingly similar. Whoever made up the Indult of October 3, 1984, knew how to grant a favor without granting it! For you to benefit by the Indult you have to be of the mind that you really don't object to the New Mass. What an unbelievable state of mind this is! If one does not "impugn the lawfulness and doctrinal soundness of the Roman Missal promulgated in 1970 by Pope Paul VI," why would he ask for the Latin Tridentine Mass in the first place? To request the use of the Indult one must necessarily tell an untruth. That is the way it looks to me.

[Emphasis - The Catacombs]
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre
The Angelus - February 1990

Questions and Answers on the Indult Mass

By Fr. François Laisney

Q. Some Traditional faithful have made and are making great efforts to get the "Indult". What do you think of this?

A. The past is a lesson for the present and future.

Who has been coming to the help of so many souls disturbed, and often scandalized, by the constant innovations in the new liturgy, in the new doctrine, in the new morals, in the new worldly behavior introduced by the innovators in the 60's and 70's?

There have been some conservative priests who tried to hold fast to as much as they could. They did much good for souls. Unfortunately many among them thought they had to "obey" and take the New Mass. But what happened after their death, or their retirement? All they had worked for has been destroyed by the new priests who replaced them. A few, a remnant, of their parishioners went to other parishes, thirsting for sound doctrine and reverent worship. Most of the time, they returned discouraged!

If these priests would have had the courage to offer the Traditional Tridentine Mass, relying upon St. Pius V's "Indult in perpetuity" (Quo Primum), their good work would have lasted long after them.

Many faithful, and a good number of priests understood that Faith was greater than obedience; obedience being a moral virtue, there can be an excess in it: if a law leads to the diminution of the Faith or to its loss, then to obey it is an excess of obedience! The Pope was promised the assistance of the Holy Ghost, "not to teach a new doctrine, but to keep entirely and expose faithfully the Deposit of Faith" (Pope Pius IX, in the very definition of Papal infallibility). "The Master stroke of Satan was to induce disobedience to Tradition in the name of obedience" (Archbishop Lefebvre).

The priests who understood this with the grace of God and kept the Traditional Mass, went through great difficulties and even—let us use the word—through a real persecution. All kinds of pressures were used against them, trying to make them stop offering the Traditional Mass. With the grace of God, they persevered, and brought forth lasting fruits. Many vocations came from these chapels, good families were given the graces and strength to be faithful to the laws of God, many returned to the sacraments after years away from Our Lord.... These priests have provided food for these souls and an assurance of continuity in the future.

Among them, one Bishop had a prominent role and has been a drawing example for many others: Archbishop Lefebvre. The Divine Providence had prepared him, as a missionary Bishop in Africa and later as Superior General of the Holy Ghost Fathers, for his role in the present crisis of the Church. He opened his seminary in 1969 (Fribourg), the very year of the New Mass; he founded the Society of St. Pius X which was canonically approved and erected in the diocese of Fribourg on All Saints day 1970, the very year when the New Mass was being imposed all over the world.

From the very beginning he saw that one could not train good priests with the New Mass, since it hides the sacrificial character of the Mass and has been made acceptable to most Protestants. Thus he always kept the Traditional Mass and taught his seminarians to be uncompromisingly attached to the traditional Mass. He became a sign of hope for many, and requests for priests came to him from all over the world.

At first, he always followed the Canon Law to the letter: he asked and obtained the required permissions to open priories (Fribourg, Ecône, Albano...). By the grace of God, his seminary grew at a time when so many others were closing. Jealousy and persecution by his brothers in the episcopacy follow him: in 1975, the Society of St. Pius X was illegally suppressed. He made two appeals to Rome, which were not heard. Permissions were withdrawn from him. He was thus faced with the following dilemma (which many good priests shared): either to obey and abandon the faithful in the hands of the modernists bishops and priests, or to continue to help these faithful in an apparent disobedience.

His choice was made. "The Charity of Christ urges us." The good shepherd does not abandon his sheep when he sees the wolves coming, but "he lays down his life for his sheep!" No other Catholic Bishop has been mistreated as he has been in the past twenty years. It is in order to provide for all these faithful and seminarians that he ordained priests and even consecrated four bishops, and for no other reason, until Rome comes back fully to the unchangeable Traditional Doctrine and Liturgy of the Church. "Unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." All this persecution has brought forth much fruit: what other bishop has, in the past 20 years, opened 6 seminaries, more than 70 priories, helped and supported the foundation of more than 20 religious monasteries or convents of Carmelites, Dominicans, Franciscans, Benedictines and other orders?! "By their fruit you shall know them." In a time of destruction he has built; as the Scripture says, "Behold a high priest, who in his days pleased God, and was found just; and in the time of wrath was made a reconciliation. There was not any found like to him, who kept the law of the Most High!" (Epistle for the Mass of a holy Bishop!)

Pressed by the growing evidence of the fruitfulness of the Traditional Mass, and being unable to stop it, Rome granted in 1984 an "Indult", and in 1988 has asked for "a generous application" of this Indult.

The more time passes, the more one can question the sincerity of this "Indult". Indeed if Rome were sincere in supporting the Traditional Mass, it should acknowledge the value of the "Indult in Perpetuity" given by St. Pius V rather than pretend giving a new "Indult": no one can give to his neighbor what already belongs to this neighbor! The right to offer the Traditional Tridentine Mass already belongs to every priest without any restriction by St. Pius V's "Indult in perpetuity": what does a restricted Indult give anew to these priests?

Moreover, if Rome were sincere in supporting the Traditional Mass, the evident means would have been to approve Archbishop Lefebvre, his Society and all the good Traditional Priests who had been giving this Mass to the faithful for many years, the best means would have been to grant the bishops Archbishop Lefebvre had asked to consecrate.

But to offer a generous application of a restricted Indult in the very document that condemns the champion of the Traditional Mass seems contradictory: it gives the faithful two different signals very opposed to one another! Very suspicious.

Practically, it amounts to this: the Catholic faithful attached to the Tradition of the Church (= really "faithful") would have to ask for the permission to have the Traditional Mass (to which they already have a right!) from the very modernists bishops who have persecuted this Mass for so many years. The sheep have to ask the wolves to lead them to good pastures! After having been beaten and called all kinds of names by these modernist bishops, the faithful would have to go to them to obtain a permission WHICH HAS ALREADY BEEN GIVEN TO THEM BY A SAINT: Pope Saint Pius V!

Moreover, with time passing by, it is easier and easier to see the real intent behind this "Indult". The annexed Letter from the Bishop of San Antonio reveals what the American Bishops are up to and intend. And Cardinal Mayer, according to Mr. Michael Davies (Remnant Jan. 15, 1990), has approved what they do!

Their real intent is to bring the faithful attached to the Traditional Mass slowly to the new Doctrine and Mass of Vatican II. Cardinal Gagnon had already said (30 Days June 1988): "We went too fast!" He did not say: we went in the wrong direction, no, he just said we went too fast. Now it is precisely this new direction, the ecumenical direction, of the New Mass which we refuse: we want to worship God, not to worship man; we want a liturgy that lifts our soul to God, not a man-centered liturgy; we want a liturgy that feeds our Catholic Faith, not a watered down liturgy acceptable by the protestants; we want the Mass of the Saints!

This intent is evident in a letter of Cardinal Mayer to Msgr. Ruscitto, dated November 30th, 1989:
"The only solution to your problem remains the submission of your intellect and will to the faith of the Church as it continues to be taught by the Successor of Peter and the Bishops in union with him (cf. Lumen Gentium, nn. 19-25). If you cannot perceive the continuity in the Church's teaching tradition, then, dear Father, make an act of faith that it is so because the Holy Ghost will never abandon the Church."

So when Pope John Paul II says "Collaboration is possible" with the Communists (Doc. Cat., No. 1997 p. 3), we are to "make an act of Faith" that he is in continuity with Pope Pius XI who said "Communism is intrinsically evil and no collaboration on any ground can be admitted!" When Pope John Paul II participates in a Lutheran service, we are to "make an act of Faith" that he is in continuity with Pope Leo X who anathematized Luther! There would be thousands of other examples...

It is clear from this letter and the following facts that the real intent behind this "Indult" is to bring the good Catholic Faithful—who are attached to the Tradition of the Church precisely because they want to be "faithful" to the unchangeable Doctrine of Christ—slowly in line with the new orientations which are OPPOSED to that very Catholic Tradition. Dear faithful, do not let yourselves be deceived!

Some facts: the American Bishops, approved by Cardinal Mayer, want to mix more and more the "Indult" Mass with the New Mass. Already in California, in Minneapolis/St. Paul, in Albany, in Hudson Falls, in San Antonio, etc., the New Lectionary and Novus Ordo Liturgical calendar is used for the "Indult Mass". The New Lectionary has the new translation of the Bible; the New Calendar has all these "Sundays of the Ordinary time", most of the Feasts of the Saints have been either deleted or reduced to a commemoration, or moved to unfamiliar places... The very choice of the readings is completely different. The faithful cannot follow this "hybrid" Mass in their Traditional Missal.

Moreover, some places have this "Indult" Mass facing the faithful; communion is given in the hands (for those who ask) in some places. The faithful have to undergo "a series of instructions on 'the spirit and theology' of the Second Vatican Council."

I'll let you foresee the future!

Q. But Father, is it not better to have the Traditional Mass "in obedience" with the Indult Mass, rather than "in disobedience" with the Society of St. Pius X, or other good Traditional Priests?

A. First the Society of St. Pius X and the other good Traditional Priests are not really disobedient, but only in an appearance of disobedience. Faith is the first and fundamental obedience of our spirit to God, to Christ. There can be no true obedience to something that diminishes or endangers our Faith. To provide the faithful with the means to keep the Faith, to nourish it, to live it, is obedience to the fundamental mission of a priest, of a bishop. Mr. Michael Davies wrote that, "while such prelates as Weakland are still in good standing with Rome it would be ludicrous to so much as think about the Society being schismatic" (Remnant Jan 31, 1989, p.5): this is the common sense of the faithful. I would say, that Archbishop Lefebvre is no more disobedient than St. Joan of Arc, who was burnt as a "heretic, schismatic, sorcerer, witch, relapse, etc..." She had been condemned, not by the British, but by an ecclesiastical tribunal; but this judgment had no value in the eyes of God; neither the "condemnation" of Archbishop Lefebvre!

Secondly one must consider not only the Mass, but all the other sacraments, the marriage instructions, spiritual direction, and all the facets of the apostolate. The Mass is the heart of the Church; a healthy heart is necessary but not sufficient. Now, as the annexed letter of the Bishop of San Antonio makes it clear, the faithful who go to the "Indult" must receive the rest of the sacraments from their local modernist parish.

Thirdly one must consider the guarantees for the future: the Indult Mass can disappear without warning at the whim of the local Bishop, as it happened in Houston in 1985 after just six months. The Society of St. Pius X, in spite of many trials, has offered and is offering more and more guarantees for stability and future to the faithful.

Fourthly, beware of the circumstances: when an old conservative priest offers the Indult Mass, he often says it well. But when a modernist priest offers it, he can hardly prevent himself from introducing some modernism in it, either in his sermon, or in the negligences in the Liturgy, or in the giving communion in the hands, or in mixing rites, etc...

If a Catholic wants to be supported in his fidelity to the Tradition of the church, he should address himself to a priest already dedicated to this Tradition, rather than to one who is not; if a priest wants to be faithful to the Tradition of the church, he should rather rely on the "Indult in perpetuity" given by a Saint, a canonized Pope, than on a Motu Proprio condemning the very bishop most outstanding for his defense of Tradition!

The only attractive side of the "Indult" is to avoid persecution by the local diocese. But if one wants to do good, he should not be afraid to suffer for it: are we not the children of the Martyrs? The Traditional Mass will come back in the Church, thanks to those who have stood up for it without compromise with the novelties and innovators!

Yet the Divine Providence excels in drawing good out of evil. The "Ecclesia Dei" Motu Proprio, which intended to detach many people away from the Society of St. Pius X and good Traditional Priests, has rather brought many other faithful and priests back to the Traditional Mass! It has given greater evidence of the thirst for it among the faithful and good priests. In this we rejoice, as St. Paul says: "But what then? So that by all means, whether by occasion, or by truth, Christ be preached: in this also I rejoice, yea, and will rejoice." (Phil. I 18)

Q. Christ promised that "the gates of Hell shall not prevail against the Church". Therefore, should we not just patiently wait?

A. And do nothing? Christ promised that the gates of Hell shall not prevail against His Church; He did not promise that the gates of Hell shall not prevail against those who do nothing to defend the Church and its Tradition!!! Remember the useless servant in the Gospel's parable!

Q. Is it presumptuous to think YOU can save the Church?

A. We do not think we can save the Church. We rather want to be saved by the Church, and to save many other souls, by using the very same means by which the Church has saved so many generations of Saints, viz. the Traditional Mass and Sacraments!

Q. Could you give us some practical guidelines?

A. 1) If you have access to both the Traditional Mass offered by a priest uncompromisingly attached to Tradition and the Indult Mass, go to the Traditional Mass offered by the Traditional priest. Your attachment to Tradition will be best protected and fostered by that priest, even if it means traveling a little farther. This is even more necessary if you have children: that priest will provide them with good Catechism (the Indult Mass requires you to get catechism from your local parish).

2) If you have access to the Traditional Mass offered by a priest uncompromisingly attached to Tradition, do not lose your time making petitions for an Indult Mass. As Father Wickens said very well: "One Traditional Mass is worth more than a thousand petitions!" You will do more good living the Traditional Mass according to the examples of the Saints, and drawing other souls to it.

3) If you do not have access to the Traditional Mass offered by a priest uncompromisingly attached to Tradition, but only to the Indult Mass, you must be careful and distinguish:

— if that Indult Mass is offered by a good priest, who teaches the Traditional Doctrine (and not the new theology, as the American Bishops would like), giving a good commentary of the Gospel, or a good homily; if he does not mix the Traditional Liturgy with the New Liturgy, if he does not allow Communion in the hand (which the Traditional Liturgy does not allow), if he does not introduce any of the modernist practices, then you can go there.

— if on the contrary he mixes the Old with the New Liturgy, or admits Communion in the hand, or preaches the "New Theology" (which by the very fact that it is new does not come from Our Lord Jesus Christ), or introduces any of the modernist practices, then I advise you not to go there. Indeed they just want to lead you slowly and slowly to all the innovations, away from the unchangeable Faith of our Fathers! Do not start this infernal process of changes. The past twenty-five years are sufficient to prove to you where that can lead you.

You may do what many good Catholic families have done: move close to where you can get the Traditional Mass every week, or even every day!

"He that shall persevere until the end, this one shall be saved!"
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre
The Angelus - 1994

The Attendance at Today's Masses
by Fr. Marc Van Es

The attendance at today's Sunday Masses

After He had created in six days the universe and all it contains, God rested on the seventh day.[1] Thus, it was by this "divine repose" that the duty for man to reserve for God a part of his weekly time was foreshadowed; a duty which is one of the elements of religion due and owed to the Creator by the creature. Meanwhile, this natural duty was not specified except by the Mosaic law,[2] which had fixed its observance on the last day of the week, the Sabbath and which had established its forms. However, the duty to sanctify the Sabbath was imposed only on the Jewish people. Then, under the New Law a change took place; in memory of the Resurrection of Christ and of the descent of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, events which both happened on a Sunday, this duty became the Sunday precept as we know it today, characterized in particular by the duty of attendance at Mass.

But in our days we witness a multiplicity of Masses, all different one from the other, old or Tridentine, new or Conciliar, in traditional liturgical language or in the vernacular, for the young, for the handicapped, etc., etc.

In order to see a little more clearly on the subject of our Sunday duties today, let us first look at what the precept of Sunday Mass consists of, so as to examine subsequently the particular cases which are the attendance at the New Mass called that of "Pope Paul VI" and at the Mass called "with Indult."

The Sunday precept in general

From the beginning of the Christian era, it was the norm to sanctify feast days by the attendance at Mass. Why was this? To show by a public worship that we acknowledge the sovereignty of God over all things and, in consequence, our total dependence on Him. Such a duty was, however, at first, of a customary character. It did not become obligatory until, the year 506 A.D. through a provision of the Council of Agde.[3] This decree of a particular council was later transformed by custom into a universal law.

One satisfies the duty of attending Sunday Mass by a conscious participation[4] in the whole of the Sacrifice, it being understood that this same Mass is celebrated in the Catholic Rite. This precept binds "subgravi" (i.e., under pain of mortal sin) all those who have reached the age of reason, i.e., seven years old.[5] But one can be excused from attending Mass in the case of impossibility
resulting from:
  • illness, 
  • distance (estimated at about one hour's journey), 
  • from the fear of grave inconvenience (e.g., the shame of a pregnant girl out of wedlock), 
  • grave danger (e.g., traveling under dangerous conditions such as icy roads), 
  • or from charity towards one's neighbors (e.g., a mother looking after her children), etc.

The case of attending the New Mass called the "Conciliar Mass" or "of Paul VI"

Following the directives and the spirit of the Second Vatican Council, a new Ordo Missae was promulgated by the Apostolic Constitution Missale Romanum on April 3, 1969. Composed with the help of Protestant ministers, it had as its aim "to do everything to facilitate our separated brethren (i.e., the Protestants and the Orthodox) on the way to union, by avoiding every stumbling block and displeasing thing."[6] Composed so as to be acceptable to everyone, by this same deed all specifically Catholic marks disappeared. But very quickly the faithful, the clergy and some bishops resisted this reform by denouncing it as dangerous for the Faith. Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci did not hesitate to write on this occasion, that "the Novus Ordo represents, both as a whole and in its details, a striking departure from the Catholic theology of the Mass as it was formulated in Session XXII of the Council of Trent."[7]

Now what do we note in this reform of the Missal? The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the non-bloody renewal of the Sacrifice on Calvary has become a meal around a table, serving as a memorial, more nor less a simple narrative of the Last Supper on Holy Thursday. The worship of the real Eucharistic Presence has been diminished and is no longer signified, by the suppression of genuflections, by the precious lining of the sacred vessels, by the placing aside of the tabernacle, by the placing of communion in the hand while standing, etc. Finally, the priest, sole minister and acting in persona Christi, has become president and brother of the people of God, barely distinct from them in the distribution of the Eucharist and in the readings. A series of facts which demonstrate the Protestantization of this New Mass, a Mass which can be used by the Protestants themselves because "theologically this is possible."[8]

Now, what about attending these new Masses? First of all, they constitute a danger to the faith of the faithful:
Quote:one can... without any exaggeration say that most of these Masses are sacrilegious and that they impoverish all Faith by diminishing it. The taking away of the sacredness is such that this Mass risks losing its supernatural character, "its mystery of faith" to become no more than an act of natural religion."[9]

This truth is confirmed by the evidence of numerous priests who have said this New Mass as well as by the attitude of the faithful in general who attend it, Even occasionally, in whom one notices unfortunately a lack of the spirit of prayer and recollection. The danger is likewise increased through the sermons heard, by the bad example seen and by becoming accustomed to the sacrileges committed.

The first consequence then is that attendance at such a Mass could become a sinful act for the Catholics warned of the danger.

In the second place, attendance at the New Mass signifies in some way one's approval, particularly if one receives Communion. It is a point of Catholic doctrine, recognized moreover by other religions, that he who receives the offering made during a religious ceremony recognizes in some implicit way, by his participation, this same religious cult. It is because of this that St. Paul declared on the subject of food offered to idols, to take care not to become an occasion of scandal for those who surround us.
Quote:"Because if someone sees you, you who have knowledge, seated at a table in the idol's temple" (today we would say at the table of the Conciliar supper), "shall not his conscience, being weak, bring him" to attend and to receive communion at the New Mass. And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish for whom Christ hath died? Now when you sin thus against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ."

That is why the attendance and Communion at the New Mass leads others to do the same; this thus becomes an occasion of loss of faith for our neighbor, it would be better to stop forever from frequenting this New Mass.[10]

In the same way, St. Thomas Aquinas adds, that he:
Quote:who receives the Sacrament from a doubtful minister (suspended, demoted, we may nowadays add dubious as to his intentions) sins for his part and does not receive the effect of the sacrament, unless excused through ignorance.[11]

But whoever communicates with another who is in sin, becomes a sharer in his sin. Hence we read in II John that 'He says unto him, God speed you, communicates with his wicked words."[12]

Consequently, it is not lawful to receive Communion from them, or to assist at their Mass.[13] Thus:
Quote:by refusing to hear the Masses of such priests, or to receive Communion from them, we are not shunning God's sacraments; on the contrary, by so doing we are giving them honor."[13]

What practical consequence can we draw from this?

These new Masses, not only cannot be the object of the obligation of the Sunday precept but one should apply, in their regard, the rules of moral theology and of Canon Law, which are those of supernatural prudence with regard to the participation or attendance, as an act perilous to our Faith or eventual sacrilege."[9]

This teaching demands on the part of the faithful an effort, sometimes very meritorious, of traveling long distances to come regularly or at least periodically to the Tridentine Mass. This also demands total abstention from attending at the New Mass; a passive attendance is tolerated for a serious reason "to render honor or for a polite obligation" (as for example for the marriage or funeral of a relative or friend), "as long as there is no peril of perversion and of scandal."[14]

In any case, no authority can oblige us to put our faith in danger. The children who attend so-called "Catholic" schools are particularly exposed by the fact of their lack of foundation and of discernment. It would be better to stay at home on Sunday, to say the family rosary, to read in your missal the Mass of the day or to read a spiritual book (Catechism, Lives of the Saints, etc.) rather than to expose oneself to the disquiet and to the imperceptible but certain alteration of our Catholic Faith, a treasure so rare in our days.

The case of attending the traditional Mass said under the "Indult"

Despite all the efforts of the official hierarchy since 1969, a few bishops, many priests, and a great number of the faithful have remained attached to the two thousand year-old traditional rite of Mass. Time passed but the problem remained. In order to resolve it, Pope John Paul II gave to the diocesan bishops the faculty of making use of an indult so as to allow priests to say and faithful to attend the Mass contained in the Roman Missal edited in 1962; the missal moreover used by the Society of St. Pius X. That was the indult promulgated by the Congregation for the Divine Worship on October 3, 1984 [Quattuor Abhinc Annos],[15] an indult we shall see hereafter, made unacceptable through the intention of its legislators and by the conditions of its application. The consecrations of June 30, 1988, occurring, Pope John Paul II made use of this with regards to the traditionalists.

Now, what about attending a Tridentine Mass celebrated under the indult?

First of all, it constitutes a danger for the faith of the faithful, a danger which comes from the priests themselves who are celebrating it. Because to obtain this indult from the official hierarchy, these priests must fulfill the following conditions:
Quote:That it should be very clear that these priests have nothing to do with those who place in doubt... the doctrinal soundness of the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI, in 1970 and that their position should be without any ambiguity and publicly known."[15]

Thus is it necessary that these priests prove publicly by their behavior, their words and writings, shorn of ambiguities, that they admit "the doctrinal soundness" of the New Mass. No question in any way whatsoever of criticizing the Protestant and definitely non-Catholic look of Pope Paul VI's New Mass.

Cardinal Mayer, former president of Ecclesia Dei [Commission] placed in charge of re-integrating the traditionalists in the Conciliar Church, added the following condition:
Quote:these same priests "can obtain" this indult "on the condition that they be in normal juridical standing with their bishops or religious superiors."[16]

One remembers that dozens of priests have been unjustly put out of their churches or their religious houses for the simple fact of continuing to say without change the Tridentine Mass, except for a good number of those who were favored by certain circumstances (age, distance etc.). May we ask these indult favored priests at what cost or compromise with the integral Catholic Faith have they kept or obtained "normal legal relations" with the hierarchy? Compromise which, for example, could appear in the fact of giving hosts doubtfully consecrated during a previous conciliar Mass or even through the manner of celebrating the traditional Mass full of hesitations and mistakes, sometimes even cause of scandal.

There is a danger too for the Faith, that comes from the proximity of the faithful who attend exclusively these indult Masses, because they also have to fulfill the conditions of not placing in doubt the "doctrinal soundness" of the New Mass.[15] Characteristically, these type of faithful, unfortunately too often, are concerned with reconciling in thought and in action the truth with heresy, Tradition with the conciliar spirit. [see also the related FAQ: Should we attend diocesan Latin Masses?]

Secondly from the very nature of the indult: an indult is "a concession from the authority which dispenses its subjects from the obligation of keeping a law."[17] "The indult is an exception. It can always be withdrawn. It confirms the general rule"[18] which is the New Mass, the conciliar liturgy. Because, to use a special permission, is this not to recognize and legitimize ipso facto the general law, that is to say the legal suppression of the two thousand year-old traditional rite?

Indeed, to obtain the indult of 1984, one must fulfill the following conditions:
Quote:that it should be quite clear that those priests and those faithful have nothing to do with those who place in question the legitimacy of the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI in 1970."[15]

Furthermore "this concession... should be utilized without prejudice to the observance of the liturgical reform [of Pope Paul VI] in the life of ecclesiastical communities"[15] of the Conciliar Church.

Therefore no question of them advertising for the universal usage of the Traditional Mass. They must be made to recognize that this Tridentine Mass was validly, legally and legitimately abrogated or forbidden. No question either or calling the worth, always actual, of the words of the Pope St. Pius V:
Quote:by virtue of Our Apostolic authority We give and grant in perpetuity, that for the singing or the reading of Mass in any church whatsoever this Missal (that is to say, the Tridentine Mass), may be followed absolutely, without any scruple of conscience or fear of incurring any penalty, judgment or censure, and may be freely and lawfully used."[19]

The third point to tackle is this: to attend the "indult" Mass is at least to approve implicitly and to encourage the work of the destruction of Catholic Tradition undertaken by the official hierarchy. To prove this assertion, let us look first of all at the intentions of some of those responsible, to see some precise facts.

In the first place the intention of Pope John Paul II himself, using this indult to favor the winning over of "traditional Catholics" to conciliar Rome:
Quote:The Holy See has granted... the faculty of using the liturgical books in use in 1962... It is very evident that, far from seeking to put a brake on the application of the reform [of the New Mass] undertaken after the Council [by Pope Paul VI], this concession is destined to facilitate the ecclesial communion (that is to say their reinstatement in the Conciliar Church) of people who feel themselves attached to these liturgical forms."[20]

What now of the intentions and hopes of Cardinal Mayer, former president of the Ecclesia Dei Commission? He said:
Quote:There are grounds to hope that, with the concerted efforts on the part of all concerned a substantial number of priests and seminarians will find the strength to renounce a 'state of mind' which until now was full of prejudices, of accusations and of disinformation... We have good reason to believe that the charity with which the priests coming from Archbishop Lefebvre and returning into the Church will be received, will contribute greatly to the fulfillment of this hope that, following them, numerous faithful whom they had served up till then, would also return into the ecclesial communion (with the Conciliar Church) through their mediation. Sometimes a temporary solution may be necessary, such as allowing them the possibility of celebrating the Holy Mass[21] [of Pope St. Pius V]."

In the hands of the official hierarchy, the Tridentine Mass serves therefore as a temporary means and bait to attract the traditional priests and people and to destroy at the same time the work of Catholic restoration, started by Archbishop Lefebvre, Bishop de Castro Mayer and their priests. Means and bait to attract the traditional Catholics now considered as schismatics because they are no longer considered as "being in communion" with the present-day Rome, of liberal and modernist tendency.

It is to be further noted that the Commission Ecclesia Dei could be generous for a time in the concessions granted to priests — a question of making them bite at the bait. But if through their "mediation" more or less conscious, their faithful do not return into the conciliar fold, it is to be anticipated that they will be judged as useless instruments and will find themselves either in the obligation to fulfill other conditions to keep that permission, or even to simply see the aforesaid permission withdrawn.

Let us now move on to some illustrating facts: having received the permission to celebrate the Tridentine Rite, the Fraternity of St. Peter now see themselves threatened to accept giving Communion in the hand[22] and saying the Mass of 1965,[22] having already accepted by one of their superiors, "all the documents of the Vatican II Council."[23] Hundreds of priests, seminarians and faithful have been lured with the Tridentine Rite and now are made to forcibly return to the ranks and the spirit of the Council. This work of destruction continues by the approval of Indult Masses close to our important Mass centers... A good method to empty these last ones or at least to prevent them from developing.
Quote:That is why, what can look like a concession is in reality merely a maneuver to separate from us the largest number of faithful possible. This is the perspective in which they seem to be always giving a little more and even going very far. We must absolutely convince our faithful that it is no more than a maneuver, that it is dangerous to put oneself into the hands of Conciliar bishops and modernist Rome. It is the greatest danger threatening our people. If we have struggled for twenty years to avoid the Conciliar errors, it was not in order, now, to put ourselves in the hands of those professing these errors."[18]

To attempt to restore the traditional Mass without considering the historical context of the crisis of the Faith is to become a blind instrument in the hands of the conciliar hierarchy.

What final conclusion can we draw from all this?

That the precept of attending Sunday Mass is obligatory for all Catholics who have reached the age of reason (seven years old) but that some may be excused particularly those who are only near Masses "of Pope Paul VI" or to traditional Masses said under the "Indult." Why? Firstly, because of the danger for the faith coming either from the priests who celebrate or from the faithful who attend them; secondly, legitimization is given to the new liturgy and finally an approval more or less implicit of the work of destruction of the One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman Tradition.

1 Gen. 2: 2-3
2 Ex. 20 :8, Lev. 23 :3, Deut. 5 :15, Ex. 31 :14.
3 Gratian: Dist. I De cons. c.3.
4 Can. 1247 (1917 Code of Canon Law).
5 Can. 12 (1917 Code of Canon Law).
6 Fr. A. Bugnini: L'Osservatore Romano (Mar 19, 1965) in Documentation Catholique, April 4, 1965, No. 1445, p. 603.
7 A Short Critical Study of the Novus Ordo Missae (also commonly known as The Ottaviani Intervention), TAN Books and Publishers, 1992.
8 Declaration of the Protestant minister Max Thurian: La Croix, May 30, 1969; p. 10.
9 Position of Archbishop Lefebvre on the New Mass and the Pope (Nov 8, 1979), Cor Unum, No. 4, November 1979, pp 3-9.
10 This is strongly inspired by I Cor 8.
11 Summa Theologica, III, Q. 64, A. 9.
12 II John 11.
13 Summa Theologica, III, Q. 82, A. 9.
14 Can. 1258, 2 (CIC 1917).
15 Indult of the Sacred Congregation of Divine Worship of October 3, 1984 in Fideliter, No. 42, Nov-Dec 1984, pp 18-19.
16 30 Days, No. 6, June 1989, p. 48.
17 F. Roberti, P. Palazzini, Dizionario di Theologia Morale, Ed. Studium, Roma, 1955, article "Indulto".
18 Interview with Archbishop Lefebvre, Fideliter, No. 70, July-August 1989, pp 13-14.
19 Bull Quo Primum Tempore of Pope St. Pius V, July 14, 1570.
20 Audience of Sept 28, 1990 to the Benedictine Monks of Le Barroux. L'Osservatore Romano (French edition), October 2, 1990, No. 40.
21 Letter of Cardinal Mayer to Msgr. May, L'Homme Nouveau, March 19, 1989.
22 Controverses, No. 42; January1992, p. 3.
23 Controverses, No. 37; October 1991, p. 4.
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre
A reminder ... sometimes it is good to review the teachings of how old/traditional SSPX taught regarding these topics.
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre

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