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Article by Marc Aupiais
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A recent newsletter sent out by Bishop Richard Williamson, of the SSPX, has raised eyebrows, suggesting that he may be reacting to a possible coming reunification with Rome.
The SSPX is a group which broke off from the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church through the consecration of four bishops, not authorized by the Holy See, including Williamson, by the late Archbishop Lefebvre, as the leaders of their Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX/SSPX) in 1988. The consecration saw Lefebvre, and his four bishops excommunicated. The SSPX believes that the Second Vatican Council, was not infallible in moral and doctrinal matters. It opposed the translation of the Catholic Latin Rite Mass into colloquial languages. According to the Vatican, all priests in the said priestly organisation, are in schism.
Recently, as part of negotiations with the fraternity, the Vatican official applicable, lifted the excommunications automatically incurred by the four leaders of what the Vatican sees as the SSPX schism. Just before this, an interview by a television station, conducted with Williamson was aired, in which he portrayed the Holocaust against Jews in World War II by the National Socialists of Germany, as much less than that believed to have occured by mainstream historians, and war records. In his view, the holocaust was only a minor event.
The bad publicity received by Rome, due to his interview, being released, caused an international storm, which Benedict XVI, was himself hit by, through choosing to take the full blame for the actions of the bishop, who lifted the excommunications, of the said SSPX four, as part of negotiations.
Traditionalist Catholic, and Latin Mass special interests coverage service, Rorate Caeli, has now released a copy of Williamson's recent newsletter, which besides its negative portrayal of the Vatican, suggests that seemingly because Benedict XVI will likely die soon, as the schismatic against Rome suggests, most popes do: that the Pope will pass over many doctrinal differences, and on condition the SSPX accept the Catechism of the Catholic Church, allow the group's members back into the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic church. Williamson, like many SSPX members, believes that Vatican II, considered infallible on morals and doctrine by the mainstream Catholic Church and hierarchy, has no legitimacy, and is heresy.
The logic of the SSPX bishop is highly flawed, but given the fact his holocaust denial interview was aired just before the excommunications were lifted by the bishop in charge of negotiating with the SSPX (contrary to media reports, Benedict XVI is not the negotiator, it is a bishop assigned the task), it may be possible that the SSPX bishop, is attempting to stifle an agreement his fellow bishops have made with Rome.