Newsletter of the District of Asia

 July-August 2000


O Roma Nobilis, orbis et Domina, cunctarum urbium nobilissima!
O Noble Rome, Queen of the World, the most excellent of all the cities!


After 1970, year of the birth of the Society of St Pius X, after 1974, year of the declaration of Archbishop Lefebvre, after 1976, year of the first major ordinations, 1988, year of the episcopal consecration, this Jubilee Year 2000 will be another historical landmark in the life of our Society.  Not primarily because we are still alive after 30 long years of struggle, but especially with the Roman Pilgrimage which took place last August 8-10.

Rome!  “This is my house!  Because this is the house of Tradition!” said Archbishop Lefebvre to a group of Cardinals during one of his many trials in the Vatican, in the former Palace of the Holy Office.  Yes, Rome, sweet home, as it has been justly said.

We were more than 5100 pilgrims who gathered in the hot afternoon of August 8th in the middle of the famous Via della Conciliazione, facing the magnificent dome of St Peter.  The Italian police had to close to large boulevard.  It was said that we were the largest pilgrimage of the whole Jubilee so far.  The procession was lead by our Superior General who carried an eight feet tall cross; he was flanked by Fr Schmidberger and Fr Aulagnier, his two Assistants, as well as two other superiors.  250 black robes, priests, seminarians, brothers walked behind in an interminable procession whose head reached the Holy Door before the end even started to move.  Behind the black soutanes were more than one hundred sisters from various congregations, in various traditional habits: Teaching Dominicans, SSPX Sisters, Oblates, Sisters of the Transfiguration, Redemptoristines, Disciples of the Cenacle, Consoling Sisters of the Sacred Heart, and a few others.  And then, the bulk of the ‘army’ of the Society (as a newspaper said): more than 4750 faithful from the four corners of the world. 


August 8, 2000:
The Superior General of the Society of St Pius X,
carying the Cross,
arrives on the Piazza of St Peter.

It took more than one hour for all these, walking four abreast, to cross the threshold of the Holy Door, at the singing of the Litanies of the Saints (which had to be repeated three times!).  How suitable to sing such Litanies, thanks to powerful loud speakers – outside and inside – this Basilica, which holds  the bodies of 3 Apostles, of so many canonized and other great Popes, including St Gregory the Great, the four St Leos, the incorrupt body of St Pius X, and so many other Saints in almost all of its corner.  One pilgrim from our group asked why were there so many Saints and great relics in Rome.  The answer is simple: Rome is the heart of the Catholic Church, which is holy by nature, by Divine vocation.  Therefore it is quite fitting to find an overflowing abundance of fruits of sanctity in the Holy City.

The media, in the evening of that glorious day were rather ironic: “It is the first time in the whole 2000 years of history of the Catholic Church that 5000 ‘schismatics’ come on pilgrimage to the tomb of St Peter, to pray for the Pope!”

Our own 70 Asian pilgrims surely didn’t go unnoticed during the 3 days of the pilgrimage, even by the media, with their 16 colorful banners: one for the District of Asia, one for each of the 10 countries of the District (Philippines, China, Vietnam, India, etc…), and a few others for the various organizations within the District.  A big and public thanks to the Bethanians of Manila who worked so hard to make these banners on time for the pilgrimage.

The Asian Delegation on the streets of Rome arriving at St Mary Major

The other summit of our pilgrimage was the Pontifical High Mass, on Colle Oppio, formerly the property of the emperor Nero.  In his wonderful sermon in five languages (French, Italian, English, Spanish and German) Bishop Fellay expressed everyone’s double feeling, “miscens fletu gaudibus”, a sort of mix of deep joy and profound sadness: the happiness of finding ourselves in this city of the Popes, of the Saints, and of being able to enter officially in the four Major Basilicas, but also, at the same time, the sorrow of being denied the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in them.  “The Roman Mass has no rights in Rome!”  “We are living the crucifixion of Tradition.”  Referring to the Third Secret of Fatima, the bishop stressed how its revelation (most likely in part only) on June 26 should have provoked a tremendous boost of devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  On the contrary, it now appears that it was the act that put the whole of Fatima “in the closet”.  Fatima, now, officially is ‘of the past’, finished, all over.  Read the actual words of various Cardinals and Roman officials in the articles on this topic elsewhere in this Newsletter.  They don’t believe in Our Lady.  When you see even a Cardinal Ratzinger, implicitly, for the sake of ecumenism, denying Our Lady’s Mediation of grace, power of intercession, subverting the very expression of “My Immaculate Heart will triumph” into a glorification of man’s free-will, you can only conclude that they cannot love Our Lady to speak like that.  Impossible. 

There should be, in the next months, a professional video-cassette made on the pilgrimage.  It will certainly be a wonderful tool of apostolate against the false accusation of being ‘schismatic’.  Hopefully in the next Newsletter, we will have more details.

Let us pray for all the seminarians, sisters, brothers, who will try their vocation in the coming months.  As I am writing this (end of August), I have just been advised that three more of our Bethanians from Manila have obtained their visa to go to the SSPX Sisters’ Noviciate in Browerville, not far from Winona, in the USA. Two others will also be going to the Oblates’ noviciate in Switzerland, in September.  Add to this another Bethanian who will be starting her postulancy with the teaching Dominican Sisters of Brignoles, France, this September 8, after a year spent in studying French, and also the Korean Bethanian who has recently entered the Sisters of Le Rafflay, in France,  the tree is bearing some good fruits and our heart is certainly filled with gratitude for all these souls running with giant steps in the way pf Christian perfection Deo gratias et Mariae!

O Lord, grant us priests!

O Lord, grant us holy priests!

O Lord, grant us many holy  priests!

O Lord, grant us many holy religious vocations! 

St Pius X, pray for us!
Fr. Daniel Couture
District Superior




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