Browse Our Articles & Podcasts

Will Pope Francis Approve the SSPX on Monday?

Image courtesy of

As the Italian news agency, ANSA, reports, Pope Francis intends to publish a new Apostolic Letter “Misericordia et Misera” on Monday, 21 November 2016. It will be a document sealing the end of the Year of Mercy and might thus have a special meaning to the Catholic world.

German Vatican expert Giuseppe Nardi also reports today on the website an important event that might also take place on Monday: the full acceptance of the Society of St. Pius X as a member of the Catholic Church, with a personal prelature, as has often previously been discussed. This information comes to Nardi from different websites that are close to the Society of St. Pius X.

Our own sources confirm that they have received reports that the Society is, at the very least, mentioned in Misericordia et Misera, though the context of the reference is not yet certain. It is worth remembering that when Pope Francis granted faculties to the priests of the SSPX to hear confessions, the members of the Society — including their Superior General, Bishop Bernard Fellay — were not notified in advance by the Vatican of this decision, and that such a surprise could again happen without prior knowledge by those most affected. At the time of the papal letter regarding confession faculties, the Society released a statement which read in part [emphasis added]:

The Society of St. Pius X learned, through the press, of the provisions taken by Pope Francis on the occasion of the upcoming Holy Year. In the last paragraph of his letter addressed September 1, 2015, to Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization, the Holy Father writes:

«I establish that those who during the Holy Year of Mercy approach these priests of the Society of St Pius X to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation shall validly and licitly receive the absolution of their sins.»

In August of 2015, just a month before the pope’s decision to extend these faculties to priests of the Society, Bishop Athanasius Schneider gave an interview to Adelante la Fe, in which he said:

Mons. Schneider: The Holy See asked me to visit the two [seminaries] of the SSPX in order to conduct a discussion on a specific theological topic with a group of theologians of the SSPX and with His Excellency Bishop Fellay. For me this fact shows that for the Holy See the SSPX is not a negligible ecclesiastical reality and that it has to be taken seriously. I am keeping a good impression of my visits. I could observe a sound theological, spiritual and human reality in the two [seminaries]. The “sentire cum ecclesia” of the SSPX is shown by the fact that I was received as an envoy of the Holy See with true respect and with cordiality. Furthermore, I was glad to see in both places in the entrance area a photo of Pope Francis, the reigning Pontiff. In the sacristies there were plates with the name of Pope Francis and the local diocesan bishop. I was moved to assist the traditional chant for the Pope (“Oremus pro pontifice nostro Francisco…”) during the solemn exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.

To my knowledge there are no weighty reasons in order to deny the clergy and faithful of the SSPX the official canonical recognition, meanwhile they should be accepted as they are.

As faithful traditional Catholics, we know that much work has been done recently to fully reconcile the Society with the Church, and we may well hope and pray that this piece of unexpected information will be confirmed as true on Monday. May the SSPX thereby become even more influential now within the Catholic Church in defending the traditional doctrine and life of the Catholic Faith as it has been essentially taught and more fully lived for many centuries now.

We will update this story with more information as it becomes available.

Steve Skojec contributed to this report. 

91 thoughts on “Will Pope Francis Approve the SSPX on Monday?”

  1. I don’t think ‘merciful’ Francis will want to be seen as casting SSPX penitents back out into the situation before the Year of Mercy ‘valid and licit’ absolution was granted. He has to extend it. To remove it would be to punish the faithful penitents.

  2. Will the SSPX want to be “approved” by Francis on Monday? Could the timing be any worse to come back under the thumb of the shower who are running things now?

    • Precisely! I’m trying to figure out what this “recognition” will achieve and who benefits from it? The Society will be re-united with the very authorities that it fled from. Not only has the situation not changed since 1988, but I would say, it’s much worse! What’s the logic here? Is anyone’s sensus fidei going off right now?

      • I think they realize time is short and they have to let the Trojan Horse in, the horse being filled with Catholics, and take their risks, so that the anniversary in Oct 2017 can allow some other ecumenical monster to be hatched on the world. They can’t pull off any grand theological gestures of unity based on ambiguity without SSPX firmly in the rearview mirror.

      • The society never fled from Church authorities, rather it was Church authorities who fled from the SSPX and from tradition. Hopefully they will once again embrace the Faith of their Fathers…

        • You’re right. I meant it from the perspective that they fled from, and wanted nothing to do with, Nuchurch. Nuchurch became the law of the land and modernism was in full swing.

  3. This presents an interesting question. What will the SSPX have to say about Francis’ studied ambiguity concerning reception of the Eucharist by those involved in a second union, one not sanctioned by the Church? I would think the society looks with alarm on this, but can SSPX turn around and immediately bite the hand that just fed it?

    • Francis has cunningly silenced Fellay by teasing and charming him. Remember this Fellay on 10/12/2013
      “The situation of the Church is a real disaster, and the present Pope is making it 10,000 times worse.”

      “In the Third Secret we read among other things that the great apostasy in the Church begins at the top.”

      “What Gospel does he have? Which Bible does he have to say such things. It’s horrible. What has this to do with the Gospel? With the Catholic Faith? That’s pure Modernism, my dear brethren. We have in front of us a genuine Modernist.
      Pope Francis antics since October of 2013 then have only gotten exponentially worse but Fellay is now quite as a mouse. Francis read Fellay perfectly and silenced his most bold and effective critic. Francis is not crazy but cunning like a fox. He is playing chess and everyone else is playing checkers.

      • Umm, the SSPX is writing about the situation on their website. It may not be as loud as you like
        or coming directly from Fellay himself (or maybe it is, I don’t have access to his latest discussions or homilies), but the SSPX is not being quiet about it.

      • I agree. Francis has indeed charmed Bp. Fellay. But Bp. Fellay also has the idea that the SSPX will “save” the Church. This was never the stance of Archbishop Lefebvre. The Archbishop believed in maintaining the traditional Mass, sacraments, and teachings until Rome came to its senses, which it obviously hasn’t done. Bp. Fellay believes in a series of supposed prophetic messages delivered to him by a Madame Rossiniere, about the year 1994, in which she believed that the SSPX was destined to save the church through her (Madame Rossinieres’) prophetic teachings, which are not compatible with the SSPX. It was only after other members of the SSPX learned that Bp. Fellay was taken in by and promoting these prophesies that they denounced them, and Bp. Fellay was forced to let go, at least for the time being, the idea of the SSPX as saving the church. But I think that he never did let it go.

  4. Francis is under pressure and needs support from conservatives. If this happens it is because of the letter from the 4 cardinals. He feels this will buy him some goodwill from trads and negate the Burke attack.

  5. Regularizing the Society would be a day of Justice. I have my questions about Faustina, but she did say “Speak to the world about My mercy … It is a sign for the end times. After it will come the Day of Justice.” (Diary of St. Faustina, 848)

  6. Does it not seem a bit schitzophrenic to you that on one hand he is regularizing the SSPX while at the same time dissing the Tridentine Mass attendees and the youth who are attracted to the reverence and beauty of the TM?

    • To be honest, not really. This is just Francis being Francis; he has the uncanny ability to say x one day, then y the next, and act as if there is no contradiction between the two incompatible statements.

    • A canonical order is subject to control. I wouldn’t be surprised if this were an attempt to formally excommunicate–albeit falsely–a perfectly orthodox order,… but, I think an ‘intervention’ like with the FFI is more plausible and especially more palatable to the public. They would have a monopoly on the media to orchestrate the narrative. After all, they have the cover of the successor of Peter. What more do they need?

      Under this cover they’ve been able to normalize praying with pagans, apostates, and heretics under JPII and Benedict, kissing imams’ excremental book, and everything so abominable that even post-conciliar Catholics only 20 years ago would have called anyone insane if told this would happen.

      Come to think of it, they did.

    • i like the Tridentine Mass as opera, not as genuine Christianity. what you call beauty & reverence, i call stuffy, pompous, starchy, and outdated for the times

    • This is how I see it too. How in the WORLD can anyone ever trust Francis after what we’ve witnessed for the last 4 years? (how SAD is the fact that I am actually NOT trusting the reigning Pontiff, the very VICAR of Christ?! NEVER in my very WILDEST dreams did I ever think I would see the day)

      What kind of a trap is he setting? The Good Lord only knows what he’s up to. Lord God guide the SSPX PLEASE to make the right decision! AMEN!!

      • Bergoglio has seen the success he’s had in destroying the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (15 monasteries destroyed) ans now he is confident to take on the SSPX.

          • Been banned from the Remnant, but other than that, after 7-8 years of Catholic blogging, I am so sick to death with the pus-filled boil that passes for Holy Mother Church that I am writing less than before.

          • I was banned from the Remnant a couple of times. I used to enjoy your posts there. Good to see The Great Stalin here. I guess no more Remnant articles from you?

            I have less interest in the Remnant these days. One short quote from a pre-Vatican II pope that highlights the situation today and you’re gone. Simply mention the name Ann Barnhardt and you’re toast. They are getting more like Church Militant, from which I’ve also been banned a couple of times.

            I think they have hitched themselves to Salza and Siscoe’s wagon, which even the SSPX are distancing themselves from, and they will not tolerate any “dissent”.

          • Yes she did. But precisely 4 minutes and 24 seconds after she went public (my rhetorical approximation) on her opinion that Bergoglio was an antipope and Benedict was the true pope, they dropped her like a sack of spuds, and the mere mention of the name Barnhardt in the comments will get you banned or deleted. I know because it happened to me.

            Go ahead. Try it at home yourself! Pop over to the Remnant and find an appropriate article, ask, “hey, what happened to Ann Barnhardt??” and see what happens!

          • Banned from the Remnant? I thought that was near impossible. They always prided themselves on not being anywhere near like CMTV’s Cuban censorship. I remember them commending you a year or so ago. You must have hit a tender spot.

    • It’s got to the stage now where, if Pope Francis announces tomorrow that night follows day, I’ll be staying awake for the ensuing 24 hours just to make sure.

    • Yeah but Psalm 7:15-16

      “15 They make a pit, digging it out,
      and fall into the hole that they have made.
      16 Their mischief returns upon their own heads,
      and on their own heads their violence descends.”

      The trap is for them, since they made it.

  7. [youtube


    The red dirt sticks
    The Blue Ridge rise
    Forests of pine surround.

    A fighting fortress
    Of prayer and peace
    Upon this battle ground.

    The beige tile lays
    The white walls stand
    Yellow flamed candles guard.

    A fighting fortress
    Of tears and sweat
    Fragrant like ancient nard.

    Gold Chalice jeweled
    Cassocks pitch black
    Dead to the world, yet live.

    A fighting fortress
    For souls their lives they’ll give.

    The red dirt sticks
    The Blue Ridge rise
    Forests of pine surrounds…

    A fighting fortress
    Lambs to the slaughter, Christ’s hounds!

    (Yes, I think the Pope might do this just to p*ss off the 4 Cardinals and their Dubia. I’m not saying that this is right but this is whom we’re dealing with and so be it. Join in the restoration of all things in Christ!)

  8. It is a preposterous idea that Pope Francis would sincerely bring SSPX into the fold. He who is such an enemy of orthodoxy could have no other reason than to control, undermine and eventually abolish this movement. The invitation should be rejected out of hand or, more gently, placed under consideration by SSPX.

    • The SSPX should take a leaf out of PF’s book & just ignore the olive branch. If he can get away from answering the Dubia, they can also refuse to play the game according to PF’s rules.

      It would, naturally, be great news for those who are without the presence of Traditional Orders due to NO Bishops rigidly adhering to the ‘spirit of VII’, but we offer our suffering in this respect to Christ Our King & His Immaculate Mother & intuitively know the day will come when all is clarified & the return to order is accomplished.

  9. My bet we’ll hear something tomorrow about the SSPX. Either extending faculties for confession, adding other faculties–for example to say public Mass, or a personal prelature. Brace yourselves! The Society can fight the Francis revolution from behind the fortress of a personal prelature. It has never stopped attacking the errors of conciliar popes, and at the same time seeking an accord with Rome.

    • They are about to be housebroken should this prove true. You cannot trust the Bergoglians — that has been proven amply true from the time of their forbearers to the present day. They are as snakes in the grass. Predators.

  10. The SSPX need stand firm against notions occupying pride of place in Roman Catholic circles and which have proved fatally toxic to large numbers of the faithful – and indeed to Western culture.
    My estimation of Rome’s current approach is to provide hospitality to the Society and the broader group of traditional Catholics in their own corral while they become extinct and have the chrysalis of Roman Catholicism politely commandeered by the new entity. For this to be successful it requires the current ambiguity while employing a decidedly firm appeal to our tradition of obedience.
    The heterodox within the Roman Catholicism cling to the current structure in order to claim the credibility provided by its pedigree. That is the best that can be gleaned regarding their intention. The financial security provided by the institution they debase is vital for the inauguration of their new and improved kungian kasparian katholicism and ultimately to their personal financial security.
    Those driving this scenario appear to reference High-Low Anglicanism as a model for their vision, but we all know where it leads. It bespeaks the degree of groundless fantasy, wishful thinking, and ruthless confection employed in justifying the establishment of a self-comfort zone termed church, yet devoid of the governance provided by Scripture, Apostolic Tradition and the

  11. The SSPX should stay away from any formal ties with the Vatican, or else they will betrayed and destroyed like the Franciscans of the Immaculate! Beware of Bergoglio!

      • Yeah, a TRAGEDY. Catholicism can’t change, even though it can a bit.

        The SSPX are not 16th Century Catholicism. They are what Catholicism looks like in the 21st Century. They even use microphones for the sermon, and electric lights in the ceiling.

        The Novus Ordo is a dated religion. It looks like protestantism from the 1960’s.

    • Funny you should mention museums. Because this is what becomes of many churches in the Modernist post-Vatican II era especially on places like Holland and Germany. Even the cathedral of the Diocese of Hildesheim was recently “renovated” at a cost of 37 Million euros to turn it into little more than a museum, with no stations, no crucifix half the seats with no kneelers, the Blessed Sacrament kept in some side chapel almost impossible to find, and ancient mosaics plastered over.
      With the SSPX on the other hand, when you go to one of their chapels,you know you are in a Catholic place of worship.

    • Do you claim to be Catholic? Or are you a mere black-hearted protestant troll? Or are you just trying to stir the pot? Or should you return to your mother’s basement? And get a real job?

  12. As long as the SSPX keeps hold of all of its real estate and other assets, they should be fine. That way when the trap is sprung they can bolt without having to start from scratch.

  13. Please, everybody, bear in mind that the Pope has a very professional team of PR spinmeisters and media manipulators in place now to handle his propaganda.

    If anything positive does come out about the SSPX today you can bet your last cent that the timing of it will have been carefully crafted to knock AL and the dubia “off the front page”. Do not fall for their ploy and be distracted from what is most important – the de facto schism is spreading and the Church is being sundered by the actions of Frankenpope. Whether the SSPX are brought into the mess or whether they retain their current position of immunity is all relatively minor compared to the big picture.

  14. Can someone please tell me if SSPX is part of the Catholic Church. Is their Mass valid?
    Right now, under P. Francis, the Church is in a shambles and I am suspect of anyone that he approves of.
    How legit is the SSPX and where can I get more info?

  15. whoa look at SSPX waiting to run into Satan’s open arms. All hail Pappy of Rome. Frankie’s the one that we must follow so take your blue pill and have a swallow


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Popular on OnePeterFive

Share to...