This is a very bad time when Catholic truth is being undermined by the pope and some cardinals, bishops and religious. What I mean are all their interviews that are confusing the people on what is Catholic dogma, morals and tradition (especially about homosexuality abortion, birth control and marriage).
To this list is the suppression of offering of the Latin Mass by the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate. This order is living the Evangelical Counsels of Jesus Christ in prayer, chastity, poverty and obedience. They are the epitome of a holy religious order; young, many many vocations and traditional.
For this reason, I say that this is an extremely important time for us traditional Catholics to be united in prayer and action rather than fighting and criticizing one another. This includes; us who are in canonical union with the Vatican, the Society of St. Pius X and the Sedevacantist
What we do believe in; as St. Paul taught, “Traditional truth was confided to the Catholic Church as a deposit which it would guard and faithfully transmit as it had received it, without adding to it or taking anything away.” Catholic Encyclopedia 1907 (Tradition and Living Magisterium).
1) Canonical Traditional Catholics. This group is composed of us who are part of the canonical hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church. Like myself, who is traditional, yet am still part of the diocese and have faculties from my bishop. I will always stay in the ecclesiastical structure of the Church and recognize the pope. But I work for the restoration and renewal of the Church without leaving her in anyway. We believe that the New Mass of Pope Paul VI did not, as Pope Benedict stated in his book “Spirit of the Liturgy” develop organically ,but is valid.
Here is another quote from Pope Benedict: The liturgical reform, in its concrete realization, has distanced itself even more from its origin. The result has not been a reanimation, but devastation. In place of the liturgy, fruit of a continual development, they have placed a fabricated liturgy. They have deserted a vital process of growth and becoming in order to substitute a fabrication. They did not want to continue the development, the organic maturing of something living through the centuries, and they replaced it, in the manner of technical production, by a fabrication, a banal product of the moment. (Ratzinger in Revue Theologisches, Vol. 20, Feb. 1990, pgs. 103-104)
2) The members of the St. Pius X Society. They believe in everything that Catholics believe in before Vatican II. They do not accept the changes that were written into the documents of Vatican II on Ecumenism, Collegiality, Church State Relationship and Freedom of Religion. They also do not except the New Mass of Pope Paul VI. (I have heard that they say it is a mortal sin to go to the Novus Ordo mass????) I do not know if that is true or not. They recognize the pope, but are not in full canonical union with the Vatican. Most people that condemn them are unaware that Pope Benedict lifted the excommunication of the bishops ordained by Archbishop Lefebvre. They have been very important in maintaining Catholic tradition, especially the Latin Mass and Latin Rites since most Catholic hierarchy threw it (What Pope Benedict called the “Great Treasure”) all away in the garbage after Vatican II.
3) Sedevacantist. They hold all Catholic traditional beliefs up to around the time of Pope Pius XII. But they believe that the seat of St. Peter is vacant (There is no pope in the Vatican). They believe this because they claim that once the pope teaches error, he no longer is the pope. This is because of the infallibility of the Catholic Church and the inerrancy of the pope when it comes to teaching on doctrine and morals. And since they claim the popes since Pope Pius XII have taught heresies, they automatically excommunicate themselves and are no longer popes. They do not believe in Vatican II or the New Mass and Rites of Pope Paul VI.
I may not be totally correct on the exact definition of these three groups. So, for you who are reading this, please be patient with me. I am still learning. And this is precisely why I am writing about this. As a learning traditionalist, I try to learn as much as I can and teach it to others for the good of our beloved Catholic Church. I am not writing this to attack the SSPX (Society of Pius X) or the Sedevacantist (Pope Peter’s Chair is Vacant). Actually I very much respect the very fundamental force behind these groups, which is as I see it, is fighting against the heresy of modernism. I also respect very much their love for the ancient Rites of the Roman Catholic Church.
I bring this up for a very important reason. Instead of us attacking each other, right now at this important time, we need to recognize our difference (which I briefly tried to articulate) and then pray and work together for the very very important restoration of traditional Catholic truth and liturgies. There is too much unnecessary division and animosity between us. Let us all pray and offer up our sacrifices this lent for the repentance and restoration of Jesus’ Church to its original pristine condition. In the mean time, let us love each other and even love those who seem to be working to destroy the Church. Jesus, Mary and Joseph help us.