Last June readers of these “Comments” were promised a third article on the horrible fall of the Society of St Pius X, to consider what can be done. Just recently there appeared on the website “Avec l’Immaculée” an article with some good answers to this question, starting with the question whether Catholics can go on attending SSPX Masses. I summarize and adapt:—
In 1984 an Indult from Rome allowed the Tridentine Mass to be celebrated, under certain conditions, within the framework of the official Church. Asked whether Catholics could attend these Masses, Archbishop Lefebvre replied soon after that they should not attend, because their re-entering the mainstream framework under those conditions was tantamount to accepting Vatican II and the subsequent reforms. The priests saying Indult Masses would not be able to speak freely, and by accepting implicitly the New Mass with the Indult, they would risk sliding into the new Conciliar religion and taking their people with them.
In 2012 Bishop Fellay declared that the New Mass was legitimately promulgated, which is tantamount to saying that it is legitimate. He stifles critics of Vatican II, and while still keeping priests and people as much in the dark as possible as to what he is really up to, he steadily pushes forward the ideas of his pro-Conciliar Declaration of April, 2012. Therefore just as the Archbishop ruled out attending Indult Masses, so now, as a general rule, attending SSPX Masses should be ruled out, because even if this particular Mass is still celebrated in accordance with Tradition, the SSPX is being remoulded in general as a framework within which the new Conciliar religion is less and less disapproved, so that there is more and more of a danger in attending its Masses.
However, particular SSPX priests vary from the genuinely Traditional to the virtually Conciliar. Obviously there is less danger in attending Masses of the former than of the latter, but if the priest concerned either defends and approves of the new direction being imposed by SSPX HQ, or if he persecutes and excludes from the sacraments anybody taking any part in the Resistance, these are two signs that his Masses should be avoided, especially if there is the Mass of a resisting priest not too far away. But circumstances do also come into play, so that if, for instance, one’s children risk being thrown out of a still decent SSPX school, that may justify still attending the local SSPX Mass. When the trunk of a tree is rotting, there can still be branches bearing green leaves.
The fact remains that the trunk of the SSPX is mortally stricken, without hope, humanly speaking, of recovery. Like the Synagogue between the death of Our Lord on the Cross and the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D, it is carrying death within it, but it is not yet dead. Apostles preached there, and good Jews still attended, but they were all persecuted and eventually thrown out. If a Catholic can see today that throughout the body of the SSPX, from the head downwards, the deadly virus of a disguised Conciliar mentality is coursing, he must take action to help rescue as many souls as possible before they make shipwreck in the faith with the sinking lifeboat.
Let him, to forge his own convictions, read all he can lay his hands on, starting with the exchange of letters between the three bishops and Bishop Fellay in April of 2012. Let him talk to priests and fellow-parishioners, to co-ordinate, for instance, the putting together of refuges for priests who might not otherwise take action. There is much to be done, however few there are, at least for the moment, to do it. God is with these few.