Bishop Williamson Goes Awry Subtitled: Bishop Williamson takes another step off the path of Archbishop Lefebvre.
In his latest 'comments' (415) Bishop Williamson starts off with:
Should Menzingen ask Rome for recognition?There are two points here.
No! How can apostates grant such a petition?
First, Bishop Williamson is implying that the SSPX (Menzingen) sought for the discussions and is 'asking' for Recognition. Whereas it was Rome that requested the discussions, granted the per-conditions, and wants to resolve the issue of the SSPX canonical situation.
Second, the sweeping generalizations made by Bishop Williamson are simply leading to schism.
... Superior General publishes arguments to defend and justify his relentless pursuit of the SSPX’s incorporation into the mainstream Church. He argues that the Society is right to be talking to today’s Roman officials. He presents basically two arguments.As usual, I suspect that Bishop Williamson is mixing truth and fiction. He is implying that the SSPX is 'relentlessly' pursuing 'SSPX's incorporation into the mainstream Church'. Well, if the Church were to grant the six conditions, then what is the problem? If Bishop Fellay departs from the path set out in the last General Chapter, then he would actually have some basis for his conclusions.
These need to be examined if they are not to continue creating confusion.Frankly, given his past history, I suspect Bishop Williamson will be the one creating the confusion.
The first of the two arguments runs as follows: The Catholic Church, as the Immaculate Bride of Christ, is much more than just its corrupt officials, because it is a whole of which these officials are merely a part. But the Catholic Society of St Pius X must remain in contact with the Catholic Church. Therefore it must maintain contact, and continue to negotiate, with the corrupt officials.In this the SSPX is merely following Catholic Principles and the footsteps of Archbishop Lefebvre where he simply stated 'why do I continue to go to Rome - because that is the heart of the Church'.
Another point is that Bishop Williamson likes things to be simple, black and black (Leaders of SSPX bad, Leaders of the Church badder). This makes it easier to maintain his position and keep the wall between reality and his beliefs (as well as those of his followers) intact.
Simple solutions do not always work in complex situations. Of course, working through a complex situation with people (in my experience every time a human is involved in a problem - it is complex) takes time, energy, patience and charity. Which of these does Bishop Williamson and the 'resistance' lack?
Bishop Williamson then goes on to 'refute' the points put forward by stating that
... Indeed Catholics must draw from the Immaculate Bride of Christ whatever they need to get to Heaven, but it is never from the corruption of the corrupt Church officials that they will be able to draw their spiritual life. And if these officials are so corrupt in the Faith that contact with them positively endangers that faith of Catholics which is the very basis of Catholics’ spiritual life, then Catholics must positively avoid such officials. ...“Cor Unum” argues as though neo-modernists present no danger to the Faith!What is Bishop Williamson advocating? Basically, breaking ties with Rome until things look better. Canonically this means refusing communion with other members of the Church of Christ. That matches the definition of schism.
Now here is some more reality altering for his followers. Archbishop Lefebvre said many things and it is the height of a confirmation bias to ignore those that he said that do not support Bishop Williamson's conclusion.
Archbishop Lefebvre drew the correct conclusion ...the Archbishop concluded thay they were so corrupt in the Faith that he would have nothing more to do with them until they professed once more the Faith of the great anti-liberal papal documents, such as the Syllabus, Pascendi, and Quas Primas.
As always, I think that actions are more convincing than words. There are some who say to me, you could easily write a grand letter to the pope. But, for twenty years now, we have been writing letters which get nowhere. Once again, actions speak louder than words. When we open a seminary or when we create priories, or when we open schools, when the sisters swarm and the convents multiply, that is the only way of forcing Rome to negotiate. It's not a question of my being there, it's a question of the works we do. At Rome, they're well aware that what we're doing is not nothing. The bishops get a little annoyed when we implant ourselves here and there, and so they complain to Rome and Rome knows what's going on. So I do not think it is opportune to try contacting Rome (Tnote: In 2000 it was Rome that approached the SSPX - as predicted by Archbishop Lefebvre). I think we must still wait. Wait, unfortunately, for the situation to get still worse on their side. But up till now, they do not want to recognize the fact.(Archbishop Lefebvre - One Year After the Consecrations 1989) (Tradicat: Reality Check for the Resistance)This is definitely not supporting Bishop Williamson's narrative (black on black) and perception of reality. So it in order to sustain his beliefs he needs (and has) to alter the perception of the reality. Where does he go next?
... not only should the Society not be talking to the Conciliar officials, it should, while observing all charity and respect, be fleeing them like the plague, for fear of itself being infected by their dangerously infectious Conciliar errors, unless and until, exactly as Archbishop Lefebvre said, they show that they are quitting their Conciliarism and coming back to true Catholic doctrine.This is a reinforcement of the 'break communion' theme until 'they convert'. Of course, we know from previous 'comments' Bishop Williamson believes that a miracle will happen first and that the SSPX needs to wait for the miracle before answering the phone when Rome calls.
The second argument is that Rome’s granting of bishops to visit the Society’s seminaries (including Écône) is proof of Rome’s “benevolence” towards the Society, because Rome is “at a loss how to deal with the Society.” And once more a swallow here and there is taken to be signifying the summer of Rome’s conversion. The naivete is breathtaking. Rome knows exactly how to deal with the Society: send Conciliar bishops into Society seminaries to show its future priests how nice the Conciliar churchmen are. Then eventually the Society will just flow into the Newchurch.In my experience things are rarely black and white, or even black and black. That Cardinal Mueller has, after the council, had a change of attitude concerning the SSPX is possible and according to revelations by Fr. Couture, factual. That there are Bishops who are standing up to the 'Synodism' is likewise a fact. The accusation of naivete is frankly on the part of Bishop Williamson in treating people like two dimensional cardboard cutouts. For example, who is it that forced from Cardinal Mueller a profession of faith in the perpetual virginity? The SSPX. Who is it now speaking for Church Dogma in this new phase of the crisis of the Church: Cardinal Mueller.
Things are not black and black or even black and white. They are speckled. That Bishop Williamson is unable to handle this complexity is no fault of the people he opposes nor their Creator. It is Bishop Williamson's own choosing.
The SSPX has no business to be asking for anything whatsoever from these Roman officials, appointees perhaps, apostates certainly. And if it gives them to think that, objectively and collectively, they are anything other than apostates, it will be “like to them, a liar” (cf. Jn. VIII, 55).Here Bishop Williamson is again mixing in a few different things. The first is the blanket accusation of apostasy on all the Roman officials who are only 'perhaps' appointees to their positions. What is he implying here?
Well I know what the Church teaches concerning corrupt Church officials:
Even if the hierarchy, is 'debased by crime' they are still within the Church and retain their authority - Catechism of the Council of TrentIf the Roman officials are all apostates, does this not mean they aren't Catholic as a whole? Bishop Williamson really needs to start being clearer and making proper distinctions otherwise the following words seem to apply:
"For in after ages there would not be wanting wicked men who, like the ape that would fain pass for a man, would claim that they alone were Catholics, and with no less impiety than effrontery assert that with them alone is the Catholic Church." Catechism of TrentThe second point is that I believe this is a stunning change for Bishop Williamson when - in 1988 he stated:
Let us pray for the Pope the He may do what He quite clearly should do to give juridical standing and status to the Society which wholly deserves it and which absolutely needs it for the good of the Universal Church, let alone the Society ...For a person whose followers believe he has not changed, this looks like quite the change in attitude to me. From the SSPX 'absolutely needing' a juridical standing (canonical situation) to avoid the Roman officials like the plague.
Of course his supporters will say that he hasn't changed and that he has changed. Because they are oblivious that Bishop Williamson and the 'resistance' are with each 'comments' stepping further and further from the path of Archbishop Lefebvre.