Working through the monthly letters from Winona Seminary between the years of the episcopal consecrations (1988) and the year of Archbishop Lefebvre’s death (1991), I have been reading through a number of the direct quotes from those last years of his life. What clarity of vision!
Here are a few samples from mid-June of 1988, in other words after he had taken the decision to consecrate, but before the consecrations actually took place:
“It is not true that between ourselves and Rome it is just a question of details to negotiate. The basic problem is always there – Rome’s liberalism and modernism. They [the Roman churchmen] mean to bring us and all our works round to the Council while leaving us a little Tradition . . .”
Cardinal Ratzinger [as he then was] “put before me a letter to the Pope that I should sign, apologizing for my errors! But it is we that should be questioning them on their faith! We should be demanding of them to pronounce the Anti-Modernist Oath . . . But whenever I bring up their liberalism and modernism, they never reply. They just persist in their errors.”
“The more you think about it, the more you realize their intentions are not good . . . We cannot put ourselves into their hands . . . We made an honest attempt to continue Tradition under Rome’s protection, but it did not work out . . . They never intended to secure a place for Tradition within the Church. I entered these negotiations” (of May, 1988) because of “a faint hope that these churchmen had changed. They have not changed, except for the worse.” In conclusion: “I do not think one can say that Rome has not lost the faith.”
And by 2007, 2008, have we seen anything coming out of Rome to persuade us to the contrary? If anyone thinks so, let him show us his evidence.