On June 30, 1988 Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, creator associated with community of St. Pius X, and Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer, bishop emeritus of Campos, Brazil, consecrated four bishops at the seminary of Econe, Switzerland, when you look at the existence of 10,000 faithful and a huge selection of priests and religious.
The four brand new bishops, Bernard Tissier de Mallerais (born 1945, France), Richard Williamson (created 1940, England), Alfonso de Galarreta (created 1957, Spain), and Bernard Fellay (born 1958, Switzerland), had been opted for by Archbishop Lefebvre one of the people of the community of St. Pius X as he explained in the sermon of the ceremony of consecrations becauseвЂњthey seemed to us the most apt, whilst being in circumstances and in functions which permit them more easily to fulfill their episcopal ministry, to confirm your children, and to be able to confer ordinations in our various seminaries.
Neither schismatic nor excommunicated
When you look at the exact same sermon, Archbishop Lefebvre emphasized the extraordinary circumstances justifying their grave decision:
It is really not I think it is my duty to provide the means of doing that which I shall call вЂњOperation Survival,вЂќ operation survival for Tradition for me to know when Tradition will regain its rights in Rome, but. Today, this very day, is вЂњOperation Survival.
Into training, it would have now been вЂњOperation Suicide. if I’d made this cope with Rome, by continuing aided by the agreements we’d finalized, and by putting themвЂќ There isn’t any option, we should endure. For this reason , today, by consecrating these bishops, i will be believing that i will be keeping alive Tradition, in other words, the Catholic Church.вЂќ
One after the consecrations, in an interview published in the July-August 1989 issue of the SSPXвЂ™s magazine in France, Fideliter, the archbishop maintained that year
we must have no doubt or scruples pertaining to these episcopal consecrations. Our company is neither schismatic nor excommunicated, so we aren’t resistant to the pope. We have been perhaps not from the Catholic Church. We have been perhaps not creating a parallel Church. All of that is absurd. We have been everything we have constantly beenвЂ”Catholics carrying in. That is all.вЂќ
The part of our bishops
In their 1989 meeting by Fideliter, Archbishop Lefebvre claimed that
the four bishops exist to provide ordinations and confirmations, to restore me personally also to do the thing I did for quite a while. For the others, it really is obviously the district superiors that are offered a territory which can be theirs and who, so far as they could, go right to the assistance of this souls calling for them. For those souls have actually the ability to have the sacraments and also the Truth, the ability to be conserved. And, therefore we get to assist them to, and it’s also the demand among these souls which grants us the best, as foreseen by Canon Law, to minister to them.вЂќ
In the page into the four prospects, 29, 1987, Archbishop Lefebvre had already explained that august
The purpose that is main of moving from the episcopacy is the fact that grace of priestly sales be proceeded, when it comes to real Sacrifice for the Mass to be proceeded, and that the elegance associated with sacrament of verification be bestowed upon young ones and upon the faithful who’ll ask you for this.вЂќ
Archbishop Lefebvre insisted to their accessory towards the Holy See as well as on their solution to his priestly community:
We beseech you to definitely stay connected to the See of Peter, into the Roman Church, mom and Mistress of most Churches, maintaining with its entirety the Catholic Faith as expressed within the different creeds for the Faith, within the Catechism regarding the Council of Trent, in conformity by what you’re taught in your seminary. Stay faithful into the handing down for this Faith so the Kingdom of Our Lord can come.
Finally, I beseech one to remain connected to the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, to keep profoundly united amongst yourselves, in distribution towards the community’s Superior General, within the Catholic Faith of all time, recalling the language of St. Paul to your Galatians (1:8-9): ‘But even when we or an angel from paradise had been to show you an alternative gospel through the one we now have taught you, allow him be anathema.’
The Roman a reaction to the consecrations
On July 1, 1988, Cardinal Bernardin Gantin, Prefect regarding the Congregation for Bishops, finalized a decree of excommunication announcing that Archbishop Lefebvre, Bishop de Castro Mayer, plus the four brand new bishops had done a act that is schismatic excommunicated themselves latae sententiae (immediately) according to the conditions of canon 1382 regarding the Code of Canon Law:
A bishop whom consecrates somebody a bishop without a mandate that is pontifical the one who gets the consecration from him incur a latae sententiae excommunication reserved to your Apostolic See.вЂќ
The day that is following July 2, 1988, Pope John Paul II issued the apostolic page motu proprio, Ecclesia Dei adflicta, confirming the excommunications while the presence of a schism.
The community of St. Pius X has constantly contested the validity that is juridical of censure. The excommunication was not incurred because a person who violates a law out of necessity is not subject to a penalty (canon 1323 В§4), and even if there is no state of necessity, when one inculpably thought the opposite he would not incur the penalty (canon 1323 В§7); and if one culpably thought there was such a state of necessity, he would still incur no automatic penalties (canon 1324 В§3) besides other considerations.
Accusation of schism
Are you aware that accusation of schism, Archbishop Lefebvre constantly recognized the authority that is popeвЂ™s. Consecrating a bishop without pontifical mandate could be a schismatic work if one pretended to confer not only the fullness regarding the priesthood but additionally jurisdiction, a governing energy over a particular flock. Just the pope, who’s jurisdiction that is universal the complete Church, can appoint a pastor to a flock and enable him to govern it. But Archbishop Lefebvre never presumed to confer certainly not the total priestly capabilities of holy sales.