October 1994 - Superior General's Letter #47
Society is suffering from an apostasy from God. The world has gone mad - building on the absence of God. Although the Church is alarmed, it comprimises senslessly. Amid this collapse, the Society of St. Pius X continues to grow. As soon as the true Mass is offered in an area, churches are built; Christian families and principles appear. Penance and prayer is needed to avert the terrible events due to come for the great sins of the world.
Dear Friends and Benefactors,
Society is suffering from apostasy from God
Saint Pius X, at the beginning of his glorious pontificate in the early years of this century, made this analysis of what he saw around him:
“We experience a sort of terror at the disastrous state of human society today. For who can fail to see that society is at the present time, more than in any past age, suffering from a terrible and deep-rooted malady which, developing every day and eating into its inmost being, is dragging it to destruction? You understand, Venerable Brethren, what this disease is – apostasy from God…
When all this is considered, there is good reason to fear lest this great perversity may be as it were a foretaste, and perhaps the beginning of those evils which are reserved for the last days: and that there may be already in the world the Son of Perdition of whom the Apostle speaks.” (E Supremi Apostolatus, Oct. 4, 1903).
A world gone mad - building on the absence of God
The great athlete of the Faith launched these grave warnings when he contemplated problems of mankind that would yet have to be called mild in comparison with the situation today ; because the evils that he denounced and fought against have made appalling progress since his time. For the warnings that have rung out from heaven since then and the punishments that have been inflicted have been virtually useless in a world gone mad, a world intent on rebuilding the Tower of Babel: a world building on the absence of God.
As early as 1903, St Pius X was saying: “There are no bounds to the audacity and fury with which men are flinging themselves at religion, beating down the dogmas of Faith, striving with might and main to wipe out all relations between man and the Godhead”.
In this defiance of God how can we not see the prelude to appalling chastisements, the cause of those evils that have smashed down on the contemporary world, which yet refuses to recognize them and which in its death-wish spreads a veil over them, while it makes itself drunk on high-flown talk of peace, justice and security, which, the more they are absent in reality, the more loudly they are proclaimed in talk. Here are a few of the flagrant contradictions flaunted by naturalism and tyrannical liberalism:
Contradictions flaunted by naturalism and tyrannical liberalism
A pretence is made of fighting the very drugs one is in the process of distributing ; on the excuse of fighting a disease in which properly is to be seen the hand of God, a punishment for sin, sin is spread far and wide amongst the masses under the polite name of “safe sex” and there is whole-sale corruption of society by the propagation of sins best left unnamed ; on the pretext of fighting the “discrimination” arising from unleashed passions, laws dangerously conductive to tyranny are passed while any attempt to channel those passions by education is refused on principle, in the name of liberty, the very idea of virtue being an object of horror ; supposedly to improve the means of information, marvels of technology are today developed and super-developed which promptly become formidable means of disinformation ; by great campaigns in the media and in politics, people proposing to establish world peace and organising conferences on security are the same people who approve and decree the greatest genocide ever seen in history: every year, according to official figures, some 50 to 60 million babies are deprived of the very right to life in their mother’s womb by those whose profession it is to save lives – multiply the figure by 10 or 20 to arrive at a total for the last decade or two! Given these facts, the list of which could be prolonged indefinitely, we wholeheartedly agree with Cardinal Pie’s judgment in his third Synodal Instruction: “Naturalism is for individuals the certain way to hell”.
Though alarmed, the Chruch comprimises
Faced with this tragedy of the contemporary world, what does the Catholic Church do? It lets out a faint cry of alarm while engaging in the most senseless compromise: the adoption of the principles of liberation which are the cause of the world’s present misfortunes… thus whole sections of the Church fall to the ground in rhythm with the collapse of society…
Amid this collapse, the SSPX grows
Amids all these misfortunes, let us take a look at an institute whose few years of life are already making people say: “The finger of God is here”.
For how else are the remarkable birth and growth of the Society of St Pius X to be explained? Just when other seminaries are emptying, ours are filling ; when priests are giving up their priesthood or at least their priestly clothing, the cassock is making its appearance again ; when the idea and identity of the priesthood are tragically fading out, a new generation of priests is arising and spreading over “the whole earth”. The statistics are of minor importance but nonetheless eloquent: founded in 1970 by Archbishop Lefebvre, by 1982 the Society of St Pius X had 100 priests, 21 brothers, 21 oblate sisters, 180 seminarians divided amongst 4 seminaries ; the priests were exercising their ministry in 12 countries, with 12 priories, 5 schools, 2 retreat-houses ; twelve years later in 1994, there are 310 priests, 48 brothers, 50 oblates, and 215 seminarians divided amongst 6 seminaries. The priests’ ministry now covers 24 countries (not including countries regularly visited), with 83 priories of which 44 have a school attached, 8 retreat-houses and 15 secondary schools.
Considering the multiple kinds of opposition put in the way of the Society, including a most surprising zeal to persecute on the part of a hierarchy generally showing, alas, little such zeal wherever the salvation of their flock is involved, such an expansion in 24 years is little short of prodigious.
Grace is flowing in abundance from the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass
However, our consolation and our thanksgiving we find in a quite different miracle, the miracle of grace flowing in abundance from the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which is the heart of the Church and the heart of our institute, that miracle of which we are the daily witnesses.
For it is not only a priestly institute which is advancing despite difficult circumstances, it is a whole little Christendom taking shape, sustained and nourished at the source of all graces, the holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
What Archbishop Lefebvre described in the sermon of his priestly jubilee is taking place before our eyes whenever the Holy Mass is celebrated, churches are built, Christian families appear, followed by schools conducted on Catholic principles ; here and there works of charity for the relief of suffering and for looking after old people are already arising and expanding ; in this we have the best of all proofs that the Church has answers entirely suited to the problems of our age! The Church is in no way out of date, in matters concerning either family, our youth, or society as a whole.
Her faith, her charity, her demanding morals constitute unchanging principles which rise above all times or circumstances in which human life unfolds. These principles are always valid, and they remain the sole guarantee of that true happiness which is found only when one finds God, which is possessed only when one possesses God in Christ Jesus.
However, dear friends, while the marvelous flourishing of this institute within Catholic Tradition shows by the facts and by its fruits that it truly belongs to the Roman Catholic Church, nevertheless we must not forget the more and more dramatic situation in which we are living.
To sleep is to die!
Our Lady of Fatima’s warnings are as urgent as ever: “Pray, pray a great deal and make sacrifices for sinners, because many souls are going to hell, because there is nobody praying and making sacrifices for them” (August 15, 1917).
We are facing terrible events, proportionate to the offences committed through the world
Let us not be disheartened by the very alarming situation in the world and in the Church. Indeed, if men’s behavior in the first half of this century earned them the chastisement of two World Wars, we can be in no doubt that we are facing far more terrible events, proportionate to the offences committed since World War II against God and against Our Lord Jesus Christ. But who knows if the merciful Heart of Jesus, if the sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary cannot be touched by a veritable crusade of masses, rosaries, penances, like they were at other moments amongst the darkest in Church history?
Penance and the sacrifice of daily duty is needed
In those dark hours we know how Our Lady spoke to us: “I can no longer hold back the arm of my beloved Son poised to strike the world… You must do penance… If men do not change their ways, the chastisement will come… “Jacinta echoed: “If only men knew what Eternity is, they would do anything to change their ways… The sins which take the most souls to hell are sins of the flesh… Fashions will come which will greatly offend Jesus… People serving God must not follow fashion, the Church has no fashions… Jesus is always the same”.
With great generosity we must live a way that conforms with our Faith, cost what it may: in prayer and penance, above all in a great spirit of faith, and faithfully fulfilling the duties of our state. As Sister Lucy of Fatima said, on May 4, 1943, “The Sacred Heart of Jesus wishes souls to be brought to understand that the true penance wanted and now demanded by him consists above all in the sacrifice that each of us must make in order to fulfill the spiritual and material duties of our state of life”.
Let us go straight to Jesus, through Mary, to the Sacred Heart of our King and Lord Jesus Christ through the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Victory here is guaranteed to whosoever will have been found faithful, faithful in everything, faithful to the end.
Here is the victory that conquers the world, our faith (I Jn V, 4).
“In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph”.
† Bernard Fellay
Anniversary of the last apparition at Fatima
13 October 1994