Letter of Mgr. Lefebvre to the Sovereign
Since your accession to the Pontificate I have always nourished
the hope that the total devotion of my Society and my person to
Holy Mother Church would be recognised and that we should be allowed
to work freely and in submission to the Church for the salvation
of souls, by an increase in the numbers of holy priests.
for a solution to be found, your struggle against errors spread
by theologians whose spirit is tainted with Modernism, such as
Hans Kung, Schillebeeckx, Pohier; your efforts to restore normality
to Holland; your latest encyclical recalling the principles which
are the foundation of the Sacrifice of the Eucharist, all these
have been so many occasions to hope for such a solution, since
we concur entirely with your thinking and wishes in all these
the principal aim of the Society of St. Pius being the formation
of true priests of the Roman Catholic Church, we rejoiced every
time that Your Holiness called to mind the principles which should
govern the training of priests and which are precisely those that
have been used in our seminaries since their foundation.
be thought, reading the latest document published by the Congregation
entrusted with seminaries, on the subject of the year of spirituality,
that it is the example given by our seminaries which is the origin
of this letter addressed to the episcopate of the entire world.
On the other
hand I do believe that I have done everything possible to demonstrate
my sincere desire to find a solution to our problem.
I have never
hesitated to come to Rome on being summoned by the Curia or the
Secretary of State. Since Your Holiness entrusted my case to Cardinal
Seper I have come to see him five times. I must add that I am
rather sad at seeing no improvement in our position. While the
penalties inflicted upon heretical theologians are very mild,
I am still said to be suspended a divinis, even though
I profess the Catholic Faith in its fullness.
of the Church, Masons, Communists, Modernists, with all the media
at their disposal, fight fanatically against my work and against
me, showing by this very fact that we are the best defenders and
supporters of the Church, which they wish to destroy at any cost.
It is for
this reason that a solution is urgently needed for the good of
the Church. Your Holiness can, with complete confidence, count
on us and on our priests to support you in your work of restoring
the Truth and Sanctity of the Church, based on the indestructible
rock of Tradition, the source of the ever renewed youth of the
Church. Your Holiness could discern in the eyes and faces of our
young priests this youth, the fruit of spiritual vitality.
Eminence Cardinal Palazzini is willing to be the bearer of this
request, could he not, in concert with Cardinal Seper, submit
a definite plan for a solution, concerning firstly the Liturgy
, then the official recognition of the Society of St. Pius X,
as well as the institutes of male and female religious orders
which have developed thanks to the maintenance of sound doctrine
and traditional observances.
this request to the Virgin Mary, may Your Holiness deign to allow
me to express my most respectful and filial regards in Jesus and
Letter of Mgr.Lefebvre
to Cardinal Palazzini
Chalard has informed me of your desire to help reach a solution
to the problem of Econe, and of those who in this troubled time
cling ever more firmly to Tradition.
end you were kind enough to make some suggestions for the writing
of a letter to pass on to thw Holy Father.
you most profoundly, convinced that our efforts to renew the Church’s
priesthood are being blessed by God.
If the Holy
Father wished it, I should readily come and meet you, and we could
further discuss practical solutions, for I must admit my five
conversations with Cardinal Seper have led to nothing. We are
still where we started.
of Toledo, whom I met in Toledo a few days ago, is also willing
to intervene in favor of freedom of Lithurgy and a solution which
could preserve the work of Econe.
I pray for
such an intervention with all my heart and assure you of my feelings
of respect and gratitude in Christo et Maria.
Archbishop Lefebvre Visits Marseilles
of May, 1980, was a memorable day for the faithful Catholics of
Marseilles, France. It was on this day that literally thousands
of people gathered at the largest sports stadium in Marseilles
to attend the Solemn Pontificial High Mass which was offered by
Archbishop Lefebvre. His Grace was assisted by some of the best
known traditionalist Catholic priests of France. Present were
Monsignor Ducard-Bourget, valiant leader of traditionalists in
Paris. Abbe Louis Coache of Flavigny, monks of the monastery of
St Madeline in Bedoin, France(the monastery founded by Dom Gerard,
O.S.B. and which follows the Rule of St Benedict, as in former
times), and many, many others.
Pontificial Mass was the first offered by His Grace in Marseilles.
It was organised largely by the members of the chapel of the Society
of St Pius which was established there last year. Father George
Maurel is the priest in residence.
In the evening,
His Grace gave Solemn Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament at
which three to five thousand, conservatively estimated, assisted.