Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé No. 31: May 2019

Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé

No. 31: May 2019

St Vincent Ferrer

2019: Year of St. Vincent Ferrer

St. Vincent Ferrer: 1350-1419

The apostolate of St. Vincent Ferrer was as international as the Dominican Order itself. Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Switzerland (some even say England, but proof is lacking)… received his visit, and all of Europe felt the power of his message.

He traveled on foot – or, at the end of his life, riding on a donkey – accompanied by a group of confessors and a flock of penitents who would follow for a time the preacher that converted them. Arriving in town, he would kneel down on the ground, not wanting to penetrate any further into the city without imploring for it the divine blessing. After which, the mission commenced.

He himself would rise each morning at 2 o’clock, in order to recite the Breviary and say his private prayers. A few hours later, the mission would start with a Solemn High Mass, celebrated by St. Vincent, with deacon, sub-deacon, and a highly-trained schola — with musical instruments! The saint placed great importance on the beauty of the liturgy, which for him was the first way to preach.

The Mass was generally celebrated outdoors, as no church could contain the crowds of faithful. Next came the sermon, which easily lasted three hours (sometimes longer), the blessing of the sick (and the resulting miracles), and the reconciliation of enemies.

The Angel of the Last Judgment

In the eyes of the faithful, Saint Vincent Ferrer was above all — as he said himself — the “Angel of the Last Judgment”, he who came to cry out to the world: “Fear God, and give Him glory, for the hour of His judgment is come” (Apoc. 14:7). Born in 1350, two years after the start of the terrible bubonic plague that decimated Europe, he preached to a Christendom ravaged by the Hundred Years War, natural catastrophes (such as the earthquakes shaking even St. John Lateran and St. Peter’s), and the Great Western Schism. If that wasn’t the end of the world, it was at least a striking prefiguration. Throughout Church history, just as there have regularly been precursors of the Antichrist, God has sent precursors of the intrepid preachers who will be his direct adversaries at the end of the world.

A hundred years ago, the review La Vie spirituelle underlined the significance of St. Vincent’s mission, for his epoch and ours:

God gave him the mission to speak to all the people of Europe, to repeat during 30 years, without tiring, the importance of salvation, the blinding light of the final judgment, the eternity of Hell. […] The whole of St. Vincent’s preaching consists in boldly confronting his listeners with the most frightening and the most certain of all realities: Hell is the punishment for sin. Unless you convert, you will all perish.

The Angel of the Judgment is thus [always] a “Saint for today”.

The Problem of Evil

If God exists, where does evil come from? This is a common objection, but which actually turns against atheism and leads to religion.

And yet, evil exists, doesn’t it? Evil (for example, deafness, blindness…) does not have its own proper existence: it’s an absence, a lack, a disorder, that doesn’t exist all by itself, but only in something else that it damages. Evil is a privation of being — a privation of the normal order.

What does that prove? A privation does not have a proper cause. The shadow of a tree (privation of light) is not positively produced by the tree (which only limits the action of the Sun), and much less by the Sun itself! In a way, one could say that evil is to God what shadows are to the Sun.

But if God is all-powerful, what could limit His action? God, being all-powerful, is free to manifest His goodness as He wishes. Instead of an egalitarian universe (with millions of identical beings), His wisdom preferred a diversified creation, reflecting His goodness in a multiple fashion (in varying degrees). In this hierarchy, certain beings cast shadows on others: animals eat other animals, which eat plants, which assimilate minerals, etc. Each creature, with its limits, contributes to the general order of things.

Doesn’t the presence of evil inside humanity itself (wars, crimes, injustice…) argue against the existence of God? False notes in a concert do not in any way rule out the existence of the symphony, nor the existence of a composer. It’s actually the opposite which is true: it would be impossible to discern the false notes if the melody and harmony of the whole did not exist. Similarly, the presence of evil in the world does not in any way raise doubts as to the existence of God: to the contrary, we could not discern what is evil without having first recognized a general order of the universe.

Evil remains a scandal! Evil is a scandal for those who are more or less pantheistic (thinking that the universe itself is God), or who adore Mankind. The imperfections of our world prove first and foremost that the world is not God; it is not the Supreme Being, and so we must therefore search for something higher. Every man has a thirst for happiness which cannot be completely satisfied by things here below. This is just one more proof of the existence of God: true happiness is over and above this world!

But if God is good, couldn’t he eliminate all evil? Evil will always be a mystery for our limited human reason. We can understand that evil is permitted by God for a greater good, but it remains difficult to discern what this greater good actually is. The mystery of evil calls upon other mysteries which alone can shed light upon it: the mystery of eternal life (our life on earth is only a temporary trial, before our real life), the mystery of final judgment (one day, everyone must render an account of their actions), the mystery of original sin (man used his liberty to “thwart” God’s plan), and the mystery of Jesus Christ, who made reparation for sin in a manner even more beautiful than if sin had never existed (God’s goodness is revealed better by Jesus taking on human nature in order to make reparation and suffer in our place). To all those who suffer and are tempted to revolt, only Jesus (who suffered even more, but who leads us to happiness), provides the true answer.

Community Chronicle

January 31st: Mrs. Miriam CARROLL (Sr. Claire Gambacorta t.o.p.) passed away in Kansas, fortified by the sacraments of the Church and assisted by her fellow tertiaries. According to the constitutions of the Third Order and her personal wishes, she was buried wearing the Dominican habit.

Mirriam Carroll (coffin)

February 1st: At Montagnac-la-Crempse (Périgord), Fathers Marie-Dominique and Angelico represent the community at the funeral services for Mother Marie-Emmanuel, the first Prioress of the contemplative Dominican sisters of Avrillé.

February 9th: Brothers Michel-Marie and Augustin-Marie receive the tonsure during a Pontifical High Mass celebrated by Bishop Zendejas. Several seminarians receive the cassock, tonsure and minor orders on the same occasion.

February 10th: The Third Order Fraternity of “Saint Dominic and Saint Francis” (which gathered together all our tertiaries of Southeastern France) having become too big, Fathers Angelico and Marie-Laurent preside the erection of a new Fraternity for our tertiaries of Auvergne: the Fraternity “Saint Vincent Ferrer.” The fledgling Fraternity will be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on May 5th, feast of St. Pius V.

February 17th: Third Order meeting for Fathers Marie-Dominique and Hyacinthe-Marie at “Saint Joseph’s Domain” (Convent of the Sisters of Mary Coredemptrix, near Rennes, Brittany).

March 9th/10th: Weekend recollection for the faithful near Bordeaux, with Fathers Marie-Laurent and Hyacinthe-Marie.

March 17th: Annual pilgrimage in honor of St. Joseph for the families of St. Philomena School, with Fathers François-Marie and Angelico. Fathers Marie-Dominique and Hyacinthe-Marie are in Chartres for a conference, then to Paris for the Third Order.

March 30th/31st: For the 600th anniversary of St. Vincent Ferrer’s entry into Heaven, Father Louis-Marie leads a group of tertiaries on a pilgrimage to his tomb in Vannes (Brittany).

March 24th: Arrival of Bishop Thomas Aquinas, who will stay several weeks in France.

March 28th: Father Prior is in Rennes (Brittany), where Bishop Thomas Aquinas presides over the ceremony of the final vows of Sr. Marie-Liesse, and the temporary vows of Sister Marie-Joseph (Sisters of Mary Coredemptrix).

March 30th-April 6th: Annual pilgrimage to Rome for the graduating class of St. Thomas Aquinas Boys’ School, accompanied by Fr. Marie-Dominique.

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Death of St. Vincent at Vannes (Brittany)

News from our worksites

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In order to have a spotless church in time for Holy Week and Easter, a 5-day cleaning operation, under the di­rection of our Br. An­dré-Joseph, was ac­complished in late Feb­ruary. The height of the vaulted ceiling and the fragility of the murals (dating from the 14th century) made it neces­sary to rent a crane for the delicate procedure.

church cleaning 2

The construction permit for the future Parish Hall was rejected due to a change in zoning laws… The architect is now revising the blue prints in conformity with the new requirements, and we’re hoping to get the project under way in 2020. We’re also counting on your prayers to remove all the administrative and financial obstacles!

Crisis in the Church

February 4th, 2019: “The pluralism and the diversity of religions, color, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom.” (Declaration on Human Fraternity signed by Pope Francis in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.)

March 30th, 2019: Rabat, Morocco: the Pope visits the “Mohamed IV Institute for the Formation of Muslim Preachers,” thereby giving formal encouragement to spread a false religion fiercely opposed to Our Lord!

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Can we Accept?

Can We Accept a Canonical Recognition Proposed by a Neo-Modernist Authority?

By Maubert

Published in Le Sel de la Terre 101

The answer is not self-evident. Indeed, for years Msgr. Lefebvre envisioned an accord as though it were possible; furthermore, he took steps in this direction, it being before 1988, let us not forget.

Before answering, it is first necessary to define the terms of the problem, because there is talk here and there of an “accord” or “canonical recognition“.

What is an “Accord“?

The etymology of this word indicates a harmony of hearts. The current sense of this word, in this context, is that of an “arrangement among those who are in agreement” (Petit Robert French dictionary). The same dictionary, defining the expression “in agreement,” says [“to be in agreement“]: “To have the same opinion, the same way of thinking, or the same intention (to work in the same direction, make a common cause, walk hand-in-hand as a single person, to be united).” In other words, an accord designates a community, be it in thought or action.

If one applies this to the relations between Rome and the Society of St. Pius X, as well as to the associated communities, the accord can be doctrinal or practical.

At first, an Accord can be doctrinal

After the Second Vatican Council, a doctrinal ditch was dug between the Catholic hierarchy and the faithful who remained attached to Tradition. Thus there is no longer accord but divergence on questions of faith. After fifty years, neo-Modernist Rome is forced to reestablish an accord and lead the faithful of Tradition toward the doctrine of Vatican II; there is accord when they adopt the new doctrines. Msgr. Lefebvre and his successors were forced to bring the Roman authorities back to the traditional doctrine; in other words, they sought a doctrinal accord in the truth, which supposes the conversion of neo-Modernist Rome.

Then an Accord can be practical

This is to say that it does not concern doctrine, because the two parties diverge, but action; one seeks an arrangement to live together, each remaining what it is. But action is governed by law. Thus, such an accord is sealed by a canonical structure conceded to the communities of Tradition. Is this modus vivendi possible without the latter changing doctrine? In fact, concretely, this has never existed, as the history of the successive accords since 1984 proves.

Finally, an Accord can be simultaneously doctrinal and practical

There are two cases to envision:

* either the neo-Modernist Roman authorities propose a canonical statute, requiring at the same time adherence to some doctrinal points taken from the Council;

* or these same authorities, having returned to Tradition, recognize the canonical statute that the SSPX and associated communities already have, after having denied its existence (because the suppression of the SSPX in 1975 means nothing, and the erection of associated communities draws its legitimacy from the state of necessity – supplied jurisdiction applies here in this case).

An accord supposes that the two parties “are in agreement“. If one works for a practical agreement, one seeks an arrangement, modifying the conditions as needed, until one reaches an agreement.

What is a Canonical Recognition?

The current sense of the word “recognition” (in the context which concerns us) is “the fact of admitting (something) after having denied or doubted it“.

More precisely, it is the “action of formally, juridically recognizing. […] Recognition of a government, by which a State recognizes the legality of a government arising from a revolution” (Petit Robert French dictionary).

Nature of a Canonical Recognition

A Canonical Recognition is the granting of a canonical structure by the ecclesiastical authority to an entity that does not have it. In reality, one speaks rather of an “approbation” or “canonical recognition” of an Institute. If one uses the term “recognition” here, it is because of the particular situation in which we find ourselves: the Pope recognizes the juridical existence of communities that already exist.

However, in the mind of the Roman authorities, these communities do not currently have any juridical existence. For example, the aforementioned authorities do not recognize the vows of these religious as public vows but they consider them private vows. On the occasion of various accords (at Le Barroux [Benedictine community of Dom Gerard], at Papa Stronsay [Redemptorist community of Fr Michael-Mary], it was necessary for the members of these communities to renew their vows in the hands of the local bishop or of a representative from the Holy See. Consequently, in the case of canonical recognition, it will be necessary to examine closely these circumstances. If the Holy See, either by words or actions, declares a work legal that until then it judged illegal, to accept this line is ipso facto, despite later rectifications, to admit that the aforesaid work was illegal. Implicitly, it denies the state of necessity that has legitimized our resistance to the self-destruction of the Church.

Consequences of a Canonical Recognition

The first consequence is that the recognized institute acquires a legal personality, thus a certain autonomy in its internal government.

The second consequence is that this Institute depends more closely on the local bishop, if it is a diocesan Institute, or on the Holy See if it is an Institute of pontifical right. In the latter case, the Institute is removed from the vigilance of the bishop in anything that regards its internal government. The reason for this vigilance (of the bishop or Rome) is that it is necessarily under the direction of the hierarchy of the Church that the institutes led their members to Christian perfection. Is this canonical dependence toward the neo-Modernist authorities compatible with the preservation of the faith and its public profession?

Canonical Recognition and the Apostolate

The local bishop is responsible for all the faithful in his territory. Consequently, the entire apostolate of the priests—including those of the members of the exempted institutes—is ruled by the bishop and is exercised under his dependence and vigilance.

This is why Msgr. Lefebvre, envisioning the regularization of the works of Tradition, examined which structures could allow for continuing the apostolate beside the faithful in a certain independence from the bishops. This supposes the Institutions fall directly under the jurisdiction of the Pope.

Let us especially examine the case of a personal prelature, which is still on the agenda of Rome and of the Society.

The Second Vatican Council inaugurated personal prelatures. They are “jurisdictional entities, erected by the Holy See as instruments within the framework of the pastoral hierarchy of the Church, for the realization of particular pastoral or missionary activities“. These pastoral tasks are addressed to particular groups of people. So things are done orderly, the prelatures should be made known to episcopal conferences, before their erection, to coordinate their work.

At the head of the prelature is a prelate who has jurisdiction over the faithful upon whom particular pastoral activities are exercised by the priests of the prelature. However, to be able to exercise its apostolate in a diocese, the prelature should have obtained the preliminary consent of the local Ordinary. The personal prelature is thus an auxiliary of the diocesan clergy. The faithful who benefit from its apostolate are thus submitted principally to the local Ordinary and, in addition, to the prelate of the personal prelature.

This concerns the prelatures envisaged by the 1983 code. To tell the truth, the structure foreseen by the SSPX and by its related communities will enjoy, it seems, an almost complete independence with respect to the bishops; in any case, this independence will be much greater than that of the Opus Dei. Nevertheless, it cannot be complete, because by divine right the diocesan bishop is the head of the territory confided to his care.

Also, the simple juridical recognition implies all this: by the recognition of the Institutes, there is a dependence on the Holy See, normally on the Congregation for Institutes of consecrated Life (although the Holy Father is free to associate them with another congregation); for the erection of personal prelature—if applicable—there is a dependence on the Congregation for Bishops; then, a certain harmony with the local Ordinaries is necessary. Finally, the prelature depends on the Roman Congregation for Bishops.

“Unilateral” Recognition?

This is an expression that is frequently heard recently. What does it mean? A recognition can be bilateral?

We limit ourselves to the case of a canonical recognition: the recognition is the act of who recognizes. Yet, who recognizes the traditional communities? The Holy See. It is not we who recognize the latter and who give it a canonical structure. Consequently, a canonical recognition is essentially unilateral. So, why the pleonasm?

On the one hand, this expression seems to mean that the act of the pope would be without “doctrinal compensation“. The proposed canonical structure would not be accompanied by a preliminary doctrinal declaration to sign. In this case, it would be better to speak of a “canonical recognition without a doctrinal compensation“. On the other hand, this expression gives the impression that the works of Tradition will be regularized despite them, that they will not be for nothing, and that they will not be able to refuse.

Msgr. Rifan 1 said in 2002: « The Pope has offered to recognize our bishop with the promise of a successor; it remains for us to get out of the irregular situation in which we find ourselves. We accept and, in conscience, we cannot refuse this offer. »

Now, this is evidently false; it is necessary to agree on a document, which necessarily implies an acceptance or a refusal on the part of the aforementioned works [of Tradition]. Thus, in 1988, the Monastery of the Holy Cross 2 made a declaration refusing the agreement established between the Holy See and Dom Gérard 3. « Our Monastery of Santa Cruz, it was said, was included in the terms of the agreement that we come here to refuse, without our having been consulted about it. At the time Msgr Lefebvre fully approved this conduct. »

This brings us to a third possible sense of the expression “unilateral recognition“: it suggests that there would not be a compensation on the practical level; everything would continue as before, without any change, if only we would be officially recognized. This masks an aspect of capital importance, which is the effective submission to Roman authorities, and the inevitable influence that these would exert on us. Indeed, law is never “unilateral“; it rules the relations between persons (physical or moral) in view of the common good, thus the relations between superiors and subjects. It is inconceivable to imagine a subject who only has rights and a superior who only has duties; this would be revolutionary. Thus, the subjects necessarily have duties toward their superiors. So, if the superiors grant something, even more so do the subjects concede their submission; the right is thus essentially bilateral. Whence the question it will be necessary to examine: Does not this dependence risk leading to a doctrinal agreement on the Council?

De Facto Recognition?

This expression indicates the act of a Pope who, seeing that the negotiations with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith are stalemated, would pass over any doctrinal, canonical, or liturgical condition. It would be a recognition above all of the facts than by way of legal or canonical right. The Pope has already begun in this direction (notably in conceding the jurisdiction for confessions, then the recognition of the priestly ordinations, and now of the marriages).

We remark that what is called “de facto recognition” has some juridical consequences. Indeed, to declare that the confessions of the priests of the Society are valid amounts to saying that they are legal, conforming to the right, to the law. Although the Pope does not explicitly say: “I give jurisdiction to these priests,” it is a matter of delegated jurisdiction; in fact, it is he who set the duration of it (at first in restricting it to the limits of the year of mercy, then in deciding to continue it afterwards). What was done for confessions has now been done for other acts of the ministry of the priests of Tradition. It is a sort of “piecemeal” or “step-by-step canonical recognition“.

What the distinction between “de facto recognition” and “legal recognition” could indicate is the difference between the phase where some aspects of the ministry of the priests of the Society are recognized as legal, and the other phase where all the aspects of their ministry would be (which necessarily implies a juridical statute, because one cannot be associated with a Society without following its law). And it is only in this phase that the submission to the Roman authorities would become effective.

This distinction suggests that there could be a total recognition of the legitimacy of the Society without a dependence on the current Roman authorities, which is impossible. It is better to speak of an “ongoing canonical recognition” or an “ongoing canonical regularization” than of a “de facto recognition” as St. Thomas said, II-II q. 1 a. 3 : « Movements are specified by their terminus, and receive their name from it. For example, a casserole that heats on the stove warms, tending toward the state of heat in stages ». So here, according to the Roman authorities, the term is the canonical statute. The movement that leads there is the canonical regularization. Consequently, the movement where we find ourselves is an ongoing canonical regularization.

Canonical Recognition and Agreement

As it is now understood, the term “agreement” generally designates a practical agreement, with or without a doctrinal declaration (the current project includes one). The canonical recognition is included in the practical agreement.

The clarity of words

But why make all these clarifications of vocabulary? They are necessary if we want to be “children of the light“. In her language the Church supremely adheres to clarity of words. Firstly in the expression of dogmas; but this holds true in all the teaching of the Church, from encyclicals to the simple children’s catechism course.

On the contrary, the Revolution dreads clear expressions. Abbé Joseph Lémann 4 said:

“One cannot be careful enough, in France and elsewhere, of the manner in which evil men come to invade bit by bit all avenues of society. Their ability has been infernal. They have seized language before seizing your schools, oh Catholics, your hospitals, your courts of law, your institutions […]. The invasion began in words, in ideas; it is achieved in institutions. It was logical. A profound thinker made this reflection that one cannot meditate on enough: “As long as a people is invaded in its territory, it is only defeated; but if it allows an invasion of its own language, it is finished. The language of a people […] is the supreme bulwark of a people, its last sanctuary.” Behold why it is to render a service to the patriotic cause of the nations than of theirs to cry: Carry, before all, the battle into language, call things by their true name, and for that purpose use a naming that clarifies and disenchants the poor deceived populations.”

Alas! Modern Rome has abandoned this clarity. It would above all not be necessary to let it impose vague language on us.

This is thus the objective of these reflections: to establish clarity of language. It is necessary to call a spade a spade. If a canonical recognition undergoes negotiations where each side makes accommodations, it is necessary to call that an “agreement“. For example, the regularization of the priests of Campos 5 (Brazil) was an agreement. When signing, Abbé Rifan said: “This is not an agreement; it is a recognition.” He implied that Rome recognized the validity of Tradition, which was false. The faithful believed Abbé Rifan, and cried for victory. They have been deceived.

We would prefer to cast aside the expressions “unilateral recognition” and “de facto recognition” and simply speak of a “canonical recognition, with or without a doctrinal compensation“; things will thus be much clearer.

Translation by AA

(to be continued)

1 — Brazilian bishop consecrated by cardinal Castrillon-Hoyos, successor of Msgr Rangel consecrated by the bishops of the Society to succeed to Bp de Castro-Mayer (note of the Editor).

2 — Ruled bt Fr Thomas Aquinas, now Bp Thomas Aquinas, in Brazil (note of the Editor).

3 — Superior of the benedictine of the Monastery of Le Baroux in France (note of the Editor).

4 — Famous convert from Judaism in France in the 19th century, who converted with his brother. Both became priests, and worked for the conversion of the Jews to save them (note of the Editor).

5 — Former diocese of Bp de Castro-Mayer (note of the Editor).

The Friary’s Position

The Friary’s position

  • The position of the Friary has not changed since the foundation of our community, that is, we continue the combat for the Faith summarized perfectly by the Doctrinal Declaration of Archbishop Lefebvre of November 21, 1974.
  • More precisely, we hold the principle which has been the one of the Society from 1988 to 2012, and which was still clearly maintained in the General Chapter of 2006:

“The contacts that the Society continues occasionally with Roman authorities have for their only end to help these authorities to reappropriate the Tradition that the Church cannot repudiate without losing her identity, and not the search for an advantage for ourselves, or to come to an impossible and purely practical agreement. The day when Tradition will once again regain all its rights, “the problem of our reconciliation will have no further reason to exist and the Church will experience a new youth”. 1

  • We support therefore all the priests still in the SSPX who, not without difficulty, continue the good fight in this spirit. By the grace of God, there are a good number of them, especially in the French District of the Society.  The Appeal to the faithful of January 2014 was not a declaration of rupture with the SSPX, but a “public testimony of our firm and faithful attachment to the principles that always guided Archbishop Lefebvre in the combat for the Faith”.
  • If there are priests outside of the Society who, clearly and without ambiguity, continue the combat of Archbishop Lefebvre, there is no reason not to support them. To support them does not mean “taking sides” for one Society against another. We have no intention to do anything “against” the Society, and do not wish its collapse : nobody wants that.
  • A suggestion for those who want to remain faithful to the combat of Archbishop Lefebvre: to the word “resistance”, we prefer the expression “combat for the faith”, not only because one does not define oneself by something negative; but because this expression exists since the beginning of Tradition, and includes all those who faithfully continue the combat of Archbishop Lefebvre, no matter what organization they belong to.

News of Occupied Rome

News of occupied Rome

In the traditional world the suspicion seems to be circulating:  You criticize the Pope, therefore you are sedevacantists, or at least you are beginning to become one.  We reply by citing an author who is not suspected of being a sedevacantist:

Some, to put us down, accuse us of being overly traditional or even sedevacantist. Well, I’m not a sedevacantist; we are not sedevacantists, because sedevacantism destroys the visibility of the Catholic Church.  The Catholic Church is visibly recognizable by its exterior characteristics, She is always One, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman.  The Catholic Church is visible because She is not a purely spiritual entity, She is not simply a gathering of persons who think alike, nor a movement of ideas or a school of thought but a true society having a juridical structure having a hierarchy coming from living men with a Head recognized by all, as in other human societies.  This Head is the reigning Pontiff Pope Francis, in whom we recognize the Vicar of Christ. But we know that, precisely because the Church is a visible institution, we must always make a distinction between the Church and the men of the Church: The Church is always visible, infallible and indestructible, immaculate, in faith and morals; men of the Church are not all and are not always impeccable nor infallible.  Even the Pope may be respectfully criticized.  The Pope is not Jesus-Christ nor His successor:  he is His Vicar, but it is Jesus-Christ who holds and governs the Church 1.

The Pope asks the blessing of a heretic

Pope Francis received, on June 14, the new Anglican “Archbishop” of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who was wearing

the episcopal ring offered to the “Archbishop” Ramsey by Paul VI. The Pope took advantage of the opportunity in order to ask to be “blessed” by this heretic, who is nothing but a simple layman because Anglican orders are not valid.

But that shouldn’t shock us if we recall that Benedict XVI allowed himself to be blessed by a Rabbi:

« At the end of an [inter-religious] encounter [at the Monastery of Saint Benedict in Sao Paulo on May 11, 2007], Rabbi Henry Sobel, 63 years old,

from the Jewish Congregation of Sao Paulo, declared: “The Pope [Benedict XVI] is a friend of the Jewish people”. […] The Rabbi explained that after having asked “very humbly” for the Pope’s blessing, the Pope, having given it, then accepted in his turn to receive a blessing from him. » (Zenit.org, May 11, 2007.)

The recipe of happiness for Francis

« What is the recipe for happiness? »

In answer to this question asked by the Argentinean journalist Pablo Calvo on July 7, the Pope reflected a moment, and then became animated.  Visibly relaxed, he delivered in 10 points his “recipe for happiness”:

1. Live and let live:

« The Romans have a saying that we can take as a theme which goes “Go ahead, and let the others go ahead”. Live and let live, it’s the first step towards peace and happiness. »

2.  Give yourself to others:

« Those who are isolated run the risk of becoming selfish.  And stagnant water is the first to become corrupted. »

3.  Be animated with kindness and humility:

« In “Don Segundo Sombra” (an Argentinean novel by Ricardo Guiraldes), the hero tells how, young, he was like a waterfall off a mountain which rushes over everything; become an adult, he was like a river which went ahead then, as an older man, that he advanced, but slowly, as if canalized.  I use this image of the poet and novelist Ricardo Guiraldes, this last adjective, canalized.  The capacity to move yourself with kindness and humility.  The elderly have this wisdom; they are the memory of a people.  And a nation that cares not for its elderly doesn’t have a future. »

4.  Play with children:

«Consumerism has led us to the anguish of losing a healthy culture of pleasure:  read, enjoy art…Today, I don’t hear many confessions, but in Buenos Aires, I heard the confessions of a lot of people and I asked the young mothers who came, “How many children do you have?  Do you play with them?”  It was an unexpected question, but it’s a way of saying that children are the key to a healthy culture.  It’s difficult for parents who go to work early and come home when their children are sleeping.  It’s difficult, but it must be done. »

5. Spend Sunday with the family:

« The other day, at Campobasso, I encountered University students and people from the workforce and, to each I reminded them that we don’t work on Sunday.  Sunday is for the family. »

6.  Help the young to find work:

« We should be creative with this part of the population.  Because of a lack of opportunities, they can end up falling into drugs.  And the amount of suicides is very high among the young without work.  The other day I read, but I’m not sure it’s a scientific fact, that there are 75 million young people under the age of 25 who have no work.  And it doesn’t suffice to just feed them:  we must make up for them classes of one year to become plumbers, electricians, tailors and seamstresses… It’s dignity that will help them bring food to the table. »

7.  Take care of the world we live in:

« We must take care of creation, and we don’t.  It’s one of our greatest challenges. »

8.  Rapidly forget whatever is negative:

« The need to speak ill of others is a mark of having little esteem for oneself. That’s like saying that I feel so bad, that instead of lifting myself up, I put others down.  It is healthy to speedily forget whatever is negative. »

9.  Respect those who think differently:

« One can go all the way to witnessing with another, as long as both make progress in this dialogue.  But there’s nothing worse than religious proselytizing, one that paralyzes:  “I dialogue with you to convince you”.  No.  Each one dialogues according to who they are.  The Church grows by its attractiveness, not by proselytizing. »

10.  Actively seek peace:

« We are living in a time where wars are numerous. […]  War destroys.  The call to peace needs to be cried out.  Sometimes the word “peace” brings to mind the idea of “calm”, but peace is never tranquillity:  it is always an active peace. »

God is not even mentioned.  It used to be, in illo tempore, that joy was a fruit of the Holy Ghost (Gal. 5, 22), but for the Pope, one has no need of the faith, nor of Our Savior Jesus Christ, to be happy!

Prayer for peace « was absolutely not a failure »

On May 29, the Pope, Rabbi Skorka and the Imam Abu (friends of the Pope who accompanied him during his whole trip in Israel) gave each other the accolade in front of the “Temple Wall” under the amused eyes of Jewish journalists who qualified the trio “the Holy Trinity”!  The rest of the story takes place on June 8:  in the gardens of the Vatican, the Pope, together with the Jewish and Palestinian Presidents “prayed for Peace”; the Muslim Representative, departing from the prepared text of his prayer, asked his “Master” (in Arabic):  « Grant us the victory over the infidel people ».  Two days later, Mossoul fell into the hands of the Muslims who then massacred the Christians.  And ever since then, the blood of Christians flows in the Middle East:  we see children decapitated, adults crucified, etc.

Without doubt God did not directly answer the prayer of the Imam, but He could have permitted this triumph of Islam to punish our sins, and especially the horrible apostasy of the Conciliar Church who presents Islam as if it were a respectable religion while it is nothing but an intellectual imposture (a tissue of contradictions) which imposes itself by violence2.

But the prayer for peace in the Holy Land « was absolutely not a failure », affirmed tranquilly Pope Francis on August 18 in the plane returning from Korea:

« Holy Father, seeing the war in Gaza, wasn’t the prayer for peace organized at the Vatican last June 8th a failure according to you? »

« Thank you, thank you for the question.  This prayer for peace was absolutely not a failure. Firstly, the initiative didn’t come from me:  the initiative of praying together came from the two Presidents, from the President of the State of Israel and from the President of the State of Palestine. […] These two men are men of peace, they are men who believe in God, and who have lived through so many horrible things, so many horrible things that they are convinced that the only way to resolve this story is through negotiation, dialogue and peace.  But now for your question: wasn’t it a failure? No, I believe that the door is open. […] The door of prayer was opened.  One says: “we must pray”.  It’s a gift, peace is a gift, a gift which is merited by our work, but it’s a gift.  And tell mankind that with the way of negotiation – which is important, of dialogue – which is important, there is also that of prayer.  It’s true.  Afterwards came what came.  But that is circumstantial.  On the other hand, our meeting was not [just] a circumstance.  It is a fundamental step of human behavior:  prayer.  Now the smoke of bombs, the wars, don’t allow us to see the door, but the door remains open from now on.  And as I believe in God, I believe that the Lord sees this door, and He sees all those who pray and all those who ask Him to help us.  Yes, I love this question.  Thank you, thank you for having posed it.  Thank you3. »

Errare humanum est, persevare diabolicumHow much time will it take before the hierarchy of the Church realizes the Utopia of Conciliar ecumenism?  And how long will God permit the infiltration of the hierarchy by the Masonic Lodges?

Construct an authentic brotherhood among people

We know that Tertullian said that the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christians.  As for the Pope, after the assassination of three religious of Burundi on September 7th, he hopes that « the blood spilled would become the seed of hope to construct an authentic brotherhood among people ».

Since the last Council, the Vatican actively works at the construction of this “brotherhood”.  As for Pope Francis, he established in Buenos Aires, while he was Archbishop there, a scholastic inter-religious and multi-cultured network of cultural integration called “Scholas Occurrentes”. On September 4, the Pope explained to the delegates of the Scholas Occurrentes the reason for this network:  to organize inter-religious football matches, to combat the unemployment of the young, to promote the “culture of encounter”, to struggle against “discrimination”, to promote dialogue between religions, to create a “human village” that brings peace and hope:  « Sports saves us from selfishness; […] let us walk through life together; […] the young must build the future; […] let us build bridges, not walls; […] let us share our experiences; […] let us enter into the spontaneity of life”, etc. »

This project has nothing specifically Christian about it, it is naturalistic (without reference to the supernatural end of man) and won’t displease the “brethren” [i.e. the Masons]. Indeed, we know that the end of Freemasonry is the “reconstruction of the Temple”, that is to say, to rebuild all humanity under a “universal republic” with no reference to the supernatural end of man, nor to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

The “United Nations” of religions

The project of the Pope is in perfect harmony with those of the other leaders of the contemporary world.  It is thus that the former Spanish President Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero proposed on July 15, at the time of the international symposium on World Peace at the University of Nebrija of Madrid, the creation of a “permanent alliance between religious denominations” joined to the “Alliance of civilizations” (one of his creations) and to the United Nations.

As for Shimon Peres, the former President of Israel, he met the Pope again on September 4, 2014 and suggested an “Organization of the United Nations of religions” to fight against all violence perpetrated in the name of the faith.  « The Pope didn’t engage himself personally, but listened carefully and expressed his respect for this initiative, assuring him of the attention of the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia concerned – the Pontifical Counsel for inter-religious dialogue and the Pontifical Counsel Justice and Peace », specified Father Lombardi.

Evangelical Christians:  The Pope has gone to find his brothers

On August 12, 2014, Pope Francis affirmed: « the Pope has gone to find his brothers! », while visiting an Evangelical [= Protestant] Community.  He encourages them to walk « on the path of unity », in « searching for Jesus » because « when one walks in the Presence of God, one finds this brotherhood ».

Pope Francis gave a speech in which he indicated « the path of Christian holiness:  every day, seek Jesus to encounter Him and every day allow yourself to be sought by Jesus and allow yourself to be found by Jesus ».  Finally, the Pope asked pardon in the name of the Church for the persecutions perpetrated by Catholics against Evangelical Christians throughout the course of History: « Among those who wrote up these laws and persecuted, denounced our Pentecostal brothers because they were “enthusiastic” almost “mad”, there were some Catholics: I am the Pastor of the Catholics: I beg your pardon for what happened.  I ask your pardon for these Catholic brothers and sisters who have not understood and who were tempted by the devil and did as the brothers of Joseph.  I ask the Lord to give us the grace to acknowledge and to forgive…Thank you! »

The laws for which the Pope asks pardon are the laws which restrained the freedom of exercising a public cult of certain Evangelical sects in Italy, under Pope Pius XI.  They were perfectly in accord with Catholic doctrine…before Vatican II.

1Roberto De Mattei in the “Courrier de Rome”, June 2014, p. 6.  Roberto de Mattei presents himself as a disciple of professor Plinio Correa de Oliveira, Founder of the TFP (Work Family Property, see the “Sel de la terre” 28, p. 185; 39, p. 262 and 46, p. 266), which he frequented during about 20 years (1976-1995) and of which he wrote a biography.  He directed the “Alleanza Cattolica”.  He is president of the foundation “Lepanto” and he founded and directed the “centre culturel Lepante” (1982-2006). He writes regularly in the “Correspondance européenne”.  He is now in the “Ecclesia Dei” movement, but that doesn’t keep him from participating in the “Courrier de Rome” congresses presided by Bishop Fellay (for example the next one, in January 2015).  In the beginning of September 2014, he gave a conference during a Pilgrimage of the Society to Rome in front of an “audience of very interested Priests” (DICI #300, p. 10).

2See especially the works of Father Guy Pages (www.islam-et-verite.com <http://www.islam-et-verite.com/> ).

3Osservatore Romano en langue française, Thursday, August 21, 2014, 34, page 16.

Response to an article on the SSPX-USA web site

Response to an article on the SSPX-USA website

An article called “A New Dominican Community” was published on October 24, 2014 on the SSPX USA web site1.  Here are the principle passages with some added commentary.

It is interesting to note that on 24 October, the same day this article appeared, two Dominican Fathers from Avrillé arrived in the United States for a 15 day stay to visit the Dominican Tertiaries attached to the Avrillé friary. Two days later on 26 October, the SSPX District Superior of the United States. Fr. Wegner, sent a letter to all his priests and to all the Avrillé Tertiaries living in the United States, warning them against the Avrillé friary and asking the Avrillé Tertiaries to join the Steffeshausen Third Order.

In his turn, on 31 October, Fr. Albert sent a letter to the Avrillé Tertiaries living in the United States, warning them against the Avrillé friary and asking the same Tertiaries to join his Third Order.

The Avrillé Dominican Fathers


Start of the article appearing on the SSPX-USA web site:

A New Dominican Community

“Find out about a new traditional religious community, the Dominican Friars of Steffeshausen, Belgium, and see how you can help them… or even join the Third Order of St. Dominic.

A video has just been posted about a new foundation of traditional Dominican friars in Belgium and the Third Order that they are offering to the faithful.

This new community of traditional Dominican friars was founded on November 15, 2013 in Steffeshausen, a little village in the southeast corner of Belgium. They were invited there by the villagers after the death of their parish priest, who had kept the traditional Mass and was persecuted by his bishop some 25 years ago.

They offered the church and rectory built by this priest to these friars as a first home for their fledgling community.”

Our Commentary: The Steffeshausen house was not offered to these four priests, but to the Avrillé Dominicans.  Here are the facts:

On 26 January 2013, during a meeting in Suresnes, in the presence of Fr. de Cacqueray [then District Superior of France], Bishop Fellay asked the Avrillé Dominicans to bring together five “vagus” Dominicans (all perpetually professed to the Avrillé friary) in a house which would be under the jurisdiction of Avrillé. That day, Bishop Fellay promised to support that foundation with his authority and to tell the religious who would refuse to submit that they must remove the habit or they would no longer be recognized as Dominicans by the Society of St. Pius X.

The Avrillé Dominicans accepted this decision. A committee of lay people who were taking care of the house of Steffeshausen contacted the Avrillé Dominicans early February 2013 offering to hand over this house, so the fathers proposed to Bishop Fellay that the foundation be made there. The bishop accepted, and contacted the five religious to offer to install them in this house.

However, in June 2013, Bishop de Galarreta told Avrillé that it was he who would take this foundation under his authority. When the fathers told him that Bishop Fellay had promised that the foundation would be instituted under the authority of Avrillé, Bishop de Galarreta answered, “Bishop Fellay considers himself to be relieved of his promise.” He declined to comment further and referred to Bishop Fellay. Father Prior of Avrillé then wrote three letters to Bishop Fellay on 14 July, 26 July and 11 August 2013 (the last of which was personally delivered by Fr. de Cacqueray) asking for explanations— he has never received a response.

The SSPX article continues:

“Bishop Alfonso de Galarreta, who assists those religious communities affiliated with the SSPX, accepted to help the foundation as its ecclesiastical superior. You can help the Dominicans by making a donation . . . On their behalf, thank you very much for your support!”

(End of the text from the web site of the SSPX-USA.)

Our Commentary: The Dominican Order, which is an exempt Order, has never been put under the jurisdiction of a bishop.

What’s more, being a bishop without jurisdiction, Bishop de Galaretta’s action of removing the five religious from their legitimate superior, without that superior’s agreement, is an illegitimate act and indicates a schismatic mentality by attributing to the bishops consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre a jurisdiction they do not have and which Archbishop Lefebvre never wanted to give to them because he himself did not have it, as he so often said.

In the video presented with this article, Fr. Albert recounts his history and very rapidly skims over the 19 years of his life that he spent with “some traditional Dominicans in France,” omitting to say that he was a part of the Avrillé community, that he studied there, that he received all his ecclesiastical orders from as a member of this community and that he made a vow of perpetual obedience between the hands of the prior of Avrillé. He also forgets to tell that he was sent to the United States in 2006 by his superiors in Avrillé, on the recommendation of Bishop Fellay, and that afterwards he refused to return to the Avrillé friary where his superiors still wait for him. He also keeps quiet about the situation of the four other religious, all perpetually professed to Avrillé, of whom three left the friary in the middle of the night of 11-12 April 2011 with the complicity of the German SSPX District Superior, Fr. Franz Schmidberger. There are many lapses of memory and much silence in the telling of this tale.

This foundation, made on dishonesty and disobedience, is a violation of religious law.

But above all, in the current context, it is a maneuver by Menzingen to weaken the Avrillé community and to have a nice, happy community of Menzingen Dominicans, who neither bark nor bite.

1 — http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/new-dominican-community-5298.

2 — http://sspx.org/en/media/video/new-dominican-community-third-order-5297.

Archbishop Lefebvre and the sedevacantists

Archbishop Lefebvre and the sedevacantists

(a little known document)

Concerning the position of Archbishop Lefebvre on the “non una cum” sedevacantist position, after the Episcopal consecrations of 1988; here is an excerpt from a conference given by Archbishop Lefebvre during a retreat preached to the sisters of Saint-Michel en Brenne 1, France, on April 1st, 1989 (AUDIO excerpt attached).

« … And then, he (Dom Guillou O.S.B. 2) goes through all the prayers of the Canon, all the prayers of the Roman Canon. He goes through them one after the other and then he shows the difference, he gives translations, very good ones. He gives, for example, precisely this famous.. you know, this famous una cum.., una cum of the sedevacantists. And you, do you say una cum? (laughter of the nuns of St-Michel-en-Brenne). You say una cum in the Canon of the Mass! Then we cannot pray with you; then you’re not Catholic; you’re not this; you’re not that; you’re not.. Ridiculous! ridiculous! because they claim that when we say una cum summo Pontifice, the Pope, isn’t it, with the Pope, so therefore you embrace everything the Pope says. It’s ridiculous! It’s ridiculous! In fact, this is not the meaning of the prayer.

Te igitur clementissime Pater. This is the first prayer of the Canon. So here is how Dom Guillou translates it, a very accurate translation, indeed :

“We therefore pray Thee with profound humility, most merciful Father, and we beseech Thee, through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Our Lord, to accept and to bless these gifts, these presents, these sacrifices, pure and without blemish, which we offer Thee firstly for Thy Holy Catholic Church. May it please Thee to give Her peace, to keep Her, to maintain Her in unity, and to govern Her throughout the earth, and with Her, Thy servant our Holy Father the Pope.”

It is not said in this prayer that we embrace all ideas that the Pope may have or all the things he may do. With Her, your servant our Holy Father the Pope, our Bishop and all those who practice the Catholic and Apostolic Orthodox faith! So to the extent where, perhaps, unfortunately, the Popes would no longer have …, nor the bishops…, would be deficient in the Orthodox, Catholic and Apostolic Faith, well, we are not in union with them, we are not with them, of course. We pray for the Pope and all those who practice the Catholic and Apostolic Orthodox faith!

Then he (Dom Guillou) had a note about that to clarify a little:

“In the official translation, based on a critical review of Dom Botte O.S.B. 3, the UNA CUM or “in union with” of the sedevacantists of any shade is no longer equivalent but to the conjunction “and ” reinforced either by the need to restate the sentence, or to match the solemn style of the Roman canon. Anyway, every Catholic is always in union with the Pope in the precise area where the divine assistance is exercised, infallibility confirmed by the fact that as soon as there is a deviation from the dogmatic Tradition, the papal discourse contradicts itself.

Let us collect the good grain, knowing that for the rest, it is more necessary than ever to ask God, with the very ancient Major Litanies, that be “kept in the holy religion” the “holy orders” and the “Apostolic Lord” himself (that is to say the Pope): UT DOMINUM APOSTOLICUM AND OMNES ECCLESIASTICOS ORDINES IN SANCTA RELIGIONE CONSERVARE DIGNERIS, TE ROGAMUS, AUDI NOS.”

It is a request of the litanies of the Saints, right? WE ASK TO KEEP THE POPE IN THE TRUE RELIGION. We ask that in the Litanies of the Saints! This proves that sometimes it can happen that unfortunately, well, maybe sometimes it happens that… well there have been hesitations, there are false steps, there are errors that are possible. We have too easily believed since Vatican I, that every word that comes from the mouth of the Pope is infallible. That was never said in Vatican I! The Council never said such a thing. Very specific conditions are required for the infallibility; very, very strict conditions. The best proof is that throughout the Council, Pope Paul VI himself said “There is nothing in this Council which is under the sign of infallibility”. So, it is clear, he says it himself! He said it explicitly.

Then we must not keep this idea which is FALSE! which a number of Catholics, poorly instructed, poorly taught, believe! So obviously, people no longer understand anything, they are completely desperate, they do not know what to expect! We must keep the Catholic faith as the Church teaches it. »

Archbishop Lefebvre, retreat at Saint-Michel en Brenne, April 1st, 1989

1 — General Mother House of the sisters of the Society.

2 — A famous traditionalist benedictine monk, friend of Archbishop Lefebvre.

3 — A famous Belgian modernist monk. It is he who made the new rite of the consecrations of bishops.

The Position of our Convent

The position of our Convent

The following articles (which are chosen from our regular posted articles) deal especially with making clear the exact position of our community.

Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé No. 31: May 2019

Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé No. 31: May 20192019: Year of St. Vincent FerrerSt. Vincent Ferrer: 1350-1419The apostolate of St. Vincent Ferrer was as international as the Dominican Order itself. Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Switzerland (some even say England, ... Read More

Can we Accept?

Can We Accept a Canonical Recognition Proposed by a Neo-Modernist Authority? By Maubert Published in Le Sel de la Terre 101 The answer is not self-evident. Indeed, for years Msgr. Lefebvre envisioned an accord as though it were possible; furthermore, ... Read More

The Friary’s Position

The Friary’s position The position of the Friary has not changed since the foundation of our community, that is, we continue the combat for the Faith summarized perfectly by the Doctrinal Declaration of Archbishop Lefebvre of November 21, 1974. More ... Read More

News of Occupied Rome

News of occupied Rome In the traditional world the suspicion seems to be circulating:  You criticize the Pope, therefore you are sedevacantists, or at least you are beginning to become one.  We reply by citing an author who is not ... Read More

Response to an article on the SSPX-USA web site

Response to an article on the SSPX-USA website An article called “A New Dominican Community” was published on October 24, 2014 on the SSPX USA web site1.  Here are the principle passages with some added commentary. It is interesting to ... Read More

Archbishop Lefebvre and the sedevacantists

Archbishop Lefebvre and the sedevacantists (a little known document) Concerning the position of Archbishop Lefebvre on the "non una cum" sedevacantist position, after the Episcopal consecrations of 1988; here is an excerpt from a conference given by Archbishop Lefebvre during ... Read More

The Position of our Convent

The position of our Convent The following articles (which are chosen from our regular posted articles) deal especially with making clear the exact position of our community. Read More