Bishop Bernard Fellay : “At a pivotal point”

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Here is the latest Interview with Bishop Bernard Fellay from DICI–(Nouvelles de Chrétienté, Sept.-Oct. 2010) My emphasis in red.

The Society of St. Pius X is celebrating its fortieth anniversary. Is this the end of the wandering in the desert, as it was for the Hebrews in the time of Moses?

It seems to me that what we are experiencing resembles instead one of those expeditions of the scouts who catch a glimpse of the Promised Land, although circumstances do not allow the people to enter it. In order to avoid any misinterpretation of the image just used, I hasten to add that we declare just as firmly as ever that we are Catholics and that, with God’s help, we intend to remain that way. However for the Church as a whole this crisis does resemble a wandering in the desert, with one difference: the manna is quite difficult to find. There are encouraging signs, especially on the part of Rome; unfortunately they are quite mixed up in other very troubling matters. A few blades of grass in the desert….

In spite of everything, how is the Society of St. Pius X developing throughout the world?

The Society is actually developing a bit everywhere. Some regions are making more rapid progress than others—I’m thinking of the United States, for example—but the big handicap that we run up against is the lack of priests. Requests for help come in from all sides, but because of our severe shortage of priests we cannot respond as we ought. With every appointment [of an SSPX priest to a pastoral assignment] we make a choice that is going to disappoint one or more groups of the faithful. On the one hand that is a rather good sign, since it shows a certain development in our work, but it is also quite painful. Think of the mission countries, particularly in Africa or in Brazil. If we could send fifty priests there, it would be a great relief. The immense continent of Asia is waiting also….

Archbishop Lefebvre used to say that for the authorities in Rome the statistics of that growth were more eloquent than theological arguments. Is that still true?

I don’t know whether we should say “the statistics” or “the facts”. At any rate the two things are equally telling. As the good old saying puts it, contra factum non fit argumentum, there is no arguing against the facts—that is still totally valid. And Archbishop Lefebvre’s statement is quite true. We should note that it is not so much the number that impresses Rome, since we are still a negligible quantity in the Mystical Body as a whole. But what we represent, in an extremely vivid way, a living tradition—that overawes them.
These magnificent fruits which are very certainly, by the admission of a high-ranking Roman prelate Read More...
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