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 More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact 
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New post More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact
SSPX: Last-Minute Hurdles?
guest-post by Côme de Prévigny

On April 18, Andrea Tornielli titled on his blog Sacri Palazzi: "Fellay's response is positive". For him, the agreement had been made. Always well informed by the Romans responsible for the dossier, he deemed himself authorized to write: "the text of the preamble delivered by Bp. Fellay proposes some minor modifications of the version sent by the Vatican authorities." And, every day that followed it, the most optimistic rumors spread out. In support of what was known within the Vatican, from the very prelates in charge of the affair, Jean-Marie Guénois, always well informed, said from his corner: "It is a matter of days, and not of weeks anymore [...]. These last few weeks, the final points have been settled between Rome and Écône in order to better respond to the demands of 'clarifications' asked for by the Vatican on March 16."

Yet, two months later, a thick fog descends upon the religious landscape. While all observers thought that they saw the Roman Pontiff decide once and for all the matter to which he had dedicated a good part of his pontificate upon the delivery of a new document to Bishop Fellay on June 13, the communiqué of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith of June 14 foresaw an "additional moment of reflection". The one from the Society of Saint Pius X, of the same day, gave rise to the same uncertainty by evoking a "new phase of discussions". Even if it is known that this kind of rebound is usual in the end of difficult negotiations, one can only speculate, particularly since the number of Roman prelates who thought that the agreement would be formalized is quite larger than than those who seemed to want this new postponement. It is as if those who accused Bp. Fellay of never being able to decide suddenly found themselves with a beam in their eyes.

Already within the Society, those spirits for whom an agreement with the Apostolic See is unthinkable began to delude themselves by imagining that their action had dealt a fatal blow to this fateful process which intended, in their view, to destroy them. If their reasoning were to be followed, it should rather be imagined that Rome would have taken advantage of the division of the four bishops to deal a fatal blow to the work of Abp. Lefebvre by moving on with the process until the end. The rebound of June 13 makes them look mistaken in every scenario.

What was it then that happened between April and June? In the month of May, according to several agreeing sources, the feria quarta [Wednesday] meeting of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, aware that they acted according to the will of the Pope, endorsed the final draft proposed by Bp. Fellay, following several movements of the text between Rome and Menzingen. The Pope imagined it - the Cardinals accomplished it. Despite a certain number of absentees and of some restriction of placet iusta modum, the text had finally had the consent of their Eminences, probably aware that they would not have to meet forever. On that day, the agreement was virtually concluded. On the basis of clearly defined positions on the occasion of the doctrinal discussions that had delineated the differences, Pope Benedict XVI was ready to grant to the Society that which Abp. Lefebvre had tirelessly asked from Cardinal Ratzinger: the assurance of a traditional episcopate independent from the pressures of the local conferences.

If the internet offers a magnifying effect to the fiery sermons of some Traditionalist priests who think they can undermine their hierarchy by having their words propagated by Sedevacantist websites, the web does not say anything of the real issues afflicting the Church. Bp. Fellay reached in mid-April the limits of the line granted to the Society by Abp. Lefebvre, at the very risk of causing dismay to some of his colleagues who increased the manifestations of their fears. Those Roman interlocutors who have provoked this rebound have probably not really perceived this. It is also likely that they feared the increase of the silent opposition of the German episcopate, who presented their own ultimatums to the Successor of Peter. The extreme reluctance of Bp. Fellay seemed to suggest that they hid themselves behind formulas that created an impasse upon several months of clarifications and discussions, thus risking their own disavowal.

Paradoxically, they have rendered a great service to Bp. Fellay, by allowing him to show that, while doing his utmost for the canonical recognition of the eminently Roman work of Abp. Lefebvre, his firmness remained intact, as is shown by the way by a letter of Father Thouvenot fraudulently released on the internet. The fact remains that only the Pope has the power to bind and loose. Faced with all opposition - the strongest of which being that of those closes to him -, it is to him that belongs, in fine, the right to decide. After twelve years of discussions, at the end of seven years of pontificate, this man, who a few weeks ago said that enough injustices had been committed against the Society, will set in place the endpoint which he alone, as head of the Church, has the right to set in place.

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Wed Jun 27, 2012 2:36 am
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New post Re: More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact
Let's see if we can state the definite facts, then compare with this latest rubbish from the PR flacks at Rorate Caeli.

1. Bishop Fellay gave a text to "rome" on or about April 17.
2. The content of the text is unknown, although a partial extract is supposed to have been released by Fr. Pluger. This was completely vacuous and indicated nothing to which "rome" could possibly have objected, but we don't know what the full text said, or even if this extract is really a piece of the text or merely a paraphrase.
3. The SSPX stated that several sources in Rome assured it that Benedict was satisfied with the text. Fr. Nely has subsequently confirmed this.
4. The Vatican responded on June 13 with a rejection of the text, and La Croix reported that one point in its response was that it is unacceptable for the SSPX to speak of "errors in Vatican II".
5. Bishop Fellay and certain other SSPX figures (Frs. Iscara, Celier) have made it clear during the period April 17-June 13 that a deal was imminent and desired, and on "rome's" side the same message was being telegraphed.
6. The Vatican reiterated publicly on June 13 that the three bishops will be dealt with "separately and individually".
7. The SSPX has stated publicly that perhaps a new round of discussions could begin, indicating that the process is in suspension.
8. Fr. Nely has indicated that there will be no further response to "rome" until after the General Chapter.
9. Bishop Fellay has taken action against various priests, and Bishop Williamson, for speaking out against the deal.
10. Bishop Fellay has demanded a promise of loyalty from the Dominicans and Franciscans prior to ordaining their men. We don't know when this demand was made, but the cancellation of the ordinations was disastrously late.

I think those are the relevant facts.

#9 and #10 are being characterised as "vindictive" but I think #9 is merely what any senior manager would do in the circumstances, and #10 could indicate insecurity as much as any desire for revenge, and this seems the more likely explanation. If so, this is not incompatible with the deal being dead, contrary to how it is characterised by some, who see it as a sign that Bishop Fellay is intending to press on regardless.

#8 means that the General Chapter is potentially of decisive importance. There's no chance of a coup and all such talk is nonsense, but the more solid and numerous the opposition is, the less likely a deal will be.

We simply don't know what was in the text delivered on April 17. The Vatican certainly led the SSPX to believe that it was acceptable. Why the Vatican communicated this is unknown. The possibilities are that the text was indeed regarded as acceptable, or that "rome" wanted to see how Bishop Fellay and the rest of the SSPX would react to such a belief. I favour the latter opinion.

Did Bishop Fellay's April 17 text contain words such as "the errors of Vatican II"? It seemed unlikely until La Croix reported that such things were considered unacceptable by "rome". But even so, this is nothing more than hearsay, not direct from the Vatican or the SSPX.

What is surely clear is that the deal is dead and if it is to live again it will need to be revived. By all indications, a revival is on the cards, but the momentum has been lost and will need a huge push to get it back.

Now let's take a look at the Rorate Caeli spin, which of course refuses to see any real negative and regards the death of its friend, the deal, as though it were merely taking a light afternoon nap.

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Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:15 am
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New post Re: More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact
Now for Rorate Caeli's spin.

The general theme is set, appropriately, by the headline. The death of the deal is really only a last-minute hurdle. "No no he's not dead, he's, he's restin'!"

The first subject to be dealt with is the role of Andrea Tornielli. We are told, "Always well informed by the Romans responsible for the dossier, he deemed himself authorized to write: 'the text of the preamble delivered by Bp. Fellay proposes some minor modifications of the version sent by the Vatican authorities.'"

Tornielli is the court journalist that one reads in order to know what the enemy wishes one to believe. So we were supposed to believe that the April 17 text was acceptable and that a deal was imminent. Rorate Caeli is the court Weblog that takes the facts and the courtly leaks from the likes of Tornielli and pretends to analyse them for us, so that we can adopt acceptable ready-made opinions instead of thinking about these things. Those addicted to intellectual McDonalds buy this kind of junk.

Then, we have the first falsehood. "Even if it is known that this kind of rebound is usual in the end of difficult negotiations..."

Anybody who has been involved in difficult negotiations, and I have been involved in some extraordinarily difficult and lengthy ones in business (one which lasted months), will recognise this assertion as a complete invention. On the contrary, after a negotiation has been both difficult and lengthy, the feeling of the exhausted participants is that the investment has been so great that the desire to complete the deal is overpowering. This is a highly dangerous stage, because things which were regarded as completely unacceptable begin to take on a less unacceptable appearance. Compromise is the order of the day. A last minute "rebound" is not unheard of - it is by no means "usual."

Then a piece of bad logic, which is either plain stupidity or totally mendacious: "...one can only speculate, particularly since the number of Roman prelates who thought that the agreement would be formalized is quite larger than than those who seemed to want this new postponement."

What a stupid comparison, between those who expected the deal and those who wanted it dead and buried. Surely plenty of those in the first category - that is, those who expected the deal to occur imminently - were opposed to it. Yet the great number of these is supposed to weigh against the (tiny) number of the deal's opponents? This is pure spin, whether consciously dishonest or merely stupid it is impossible to tell.

And a little cat-scratch against the Vatican: "It is as if those who accused Bp. Fellay of never being able to decide suddenly found themselves with a beam in their eyes."

Saucer of milk for Rorate, please!

The "analysis" proceeds, "Already within the Society, those spirits for whom an agreement with the Apostolic See is unthinkable began to delude themselves by imagining that their action had dealt a fatal blow to this fateful process which intended, in their view, to destroy them. If their reasoning were to be followed, it should rather be imagined that Rome would have taken advantage of the division of the four bishops to deal a fatal blow to the work of Abp. Lefebvre by moving on with the process until the end. The rebound of June 13 makes them look mistaken in every scenario."

By this piece of vacuous rhetoric, the leaking of the letters is ruled out, without any reason, as a possible cause of the little nap that the deal is presently taking; and the letters were leaked by men who should have expected that "rome" would take advantage of any signs of disunity in the Society to move more firmly to destroy it. Yet "rome" has not done so, proving that these suicidal men miscalculated not merely the effect of their action (despite the fact that the effect obviously and undeniably has occurred), but further, the likely reaction of "rome."

One thing is clear, Rorate Caeli feels that it is very important to deny that the leaking of the letters caused the deal to feel a little sleepy.

The "rebound" (a strange term indeed for something which is not even a dead cat bounce, but merely the death of the cat) does not make those who opposed the deal look mistaken, and especially not those who desired the deal to die, and leaked the letters to cause its death, if indeed that is who did it. Quite the contrary. The only ones who have so far been "mistaken in every scenario" are those like Tornielli and Rorate Caeli, who predicted an imminent deal. But we can't leave that idea on the menu of acceptable ideas, can we?

Since the most obvious explanation is not within the range of permissible thought, Rorate Caeli proceeds to flame-grill us a plausible alternative. First, we are reassured that "rome" didn't mislead anybody, no doubt because for the next phase of the exercise it remains important that trust in "rome" not be shaken, a somewhat hopeful position even for Rorate Caeli. "What was it then that happened between April and June? In the month of May, according to several agreeing sources, the feria quarta [Wednesday] meeting of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, aware that they acted according to the will of the Pope, endorsed the final draft proposed by Bp. Fellay, following several movements of the text between Rome and Menzingen. The Pope imagined it - the Cardinals accomplished it. Despite a certain number of absentees and of some restriction of placet iusta modum, the text had finally had the consent of their Eminences, probably aware that they would not have to meet forever. On that day, the agreement was virtually concluded. On the basis of clearly defined positions on the occasion of the doctrinal discussions that had delineated the differences, Pope Benedict XVI was ready to grant to the Society that which Abp. Lefebvre had tirelessly asked from Cardinal Ratzinger: the assurance of a traditional episcopate independent from the pressures of the local conferences."

Note in passing that the only requirement that the Fraternity can reasonably hope for, and that Archbishop Lefebvre ever wanted, was independence "from the pressures of the local conferences." Right. As if the Archbishop was not equally clear about the danger of the Curia. As if Bishop Fellay is not on record expressing exactly the same concern, and as if he has not repeatedly stressed that if a prelature is granted, it will be exclusively and directly under the authority of the pope.

Having reassured us of "rome's" honesty and integrity, we are not yet going to be given the real reason for the doziness of the deal. First, all other sources must be discredited: "If the internet offers a magnifying effect to the fiery sermons of some Traditionalist priests who think they can undermine their hierarchy by having their words propagated by Sedevacantist websites, the web does not say anything of the real issues afflicting the Church."

So the priests who have spoken against the deal, including of course Bishops Tissier and Williamson, are guilty of trying to "undermine the hierarchy" and that by means of "having their words propagated by Sedevacantist websites." The reality is that vastly more non-sedevacantist Web sites have propagated those sermons and newletters than sedevacantist Web sites. Indeed, this Web site hasn't bothered to propagate several of the sermons and newsletters, precisely because they were so universally promoted elsewhere. Further, we are told that the Web doesn't tell us about the real issues. And there was I thinking that Rorate Caeli was on the Web. Is it trying to prove itself wrong, even before it finally gets to the main point that it wishes to make?

OK, so at last, here's the real explanation for the sleeping deal: "Bp. Fellay reached in mid-April the limits of the line granted to the Society by Abp. Lefebvre, at the very risk of causing dismay to some of his colleagues who increased the manifestations of their fears. Those Roman interlocutors who have provoked this rebound have probably not really perceived this. It is also likely that they feared the increase of the silent opposition of the German episcopate, who presented their own ultimatums to the Successor of Peter. The extreme reluctance of Bp. Fellay seemed to suggest that they hid themselves behind formulas that created an impasse upon several months of clarifications and discussions, thus risking their own disavowal."

It's pretty convoluted, but let's try and parse it. Firstly, the entire argument is built upon speculation about what the April text actually says (without revealing what that is), and speculation about what "rome's" true actions have been (without any sources being named), and of course the unconfirmed rumours concerning the "German episcopate." Apparently, an error of judgement was made by some unnamed "interlocutors" in Rome. Now the interlocutors in Rome are all men known by name. They are Benedict and Levada and other known-by-name men. The one thing we cannot say, is that we don't have any names. Clearly Rorate Caeli does not wish to name names, since it is assigning blame, so they'll pretend that it's a mystery who rejected Bishop Fellay's text. How weird is that? If the SSPX had rejected the deal, would the men who did so be described as "Menzingen interlocutors"? Of course, Rorate Caeli is still pretending that Benedict didn't agree with this action, or at least, that he intends to awaken the supine deal at some future stage, so that's another reason not to name him in this context.

So that's the result of all these words - "rome" made an error of judgement, misreading its prey. Well, maybe. After all, there's no reason to suppose that millions of rosaries would be wasted, and that's as good an explanation of Divine Providence as any.

Rorate Caeli doesn't wish to let sleeping deals lie, of course, so there is more spinning to be done. The first task is to shore up Bishop Fellay's authority, since that's an essential element of future "success." "Paradoxically, they have rendered a great service to Bp. Fellay, by allowing him to show that, while doing his utmost for the canonical recognition of the eminently Roman work of Abp. Lefebvre, his firmness remained intact, as is shown by the way by a letter of Father Thouvenot fraudulently released on the internet." No boosting of Bishop Fellay by a source like this would be complete without a stab at those dastardly leakers who cannot keep evil where it does its best work, in the dark. And as we have noted before, Rorate Caeli is completely hypocritical on the subject of leaked documents, so it has form. This time, it uses the contents of Fr. Thouvenot's letter to make its case, whilst simultaneously characterising it as "fraudulent." With tactics like these, why even pretend to be Christians governed by an immutable moral law?

The second and final task is to add an irrelevant postscript, tacked onto a paragraph to which it bears no intrinsic relation, and which merely reiterates that Benedict will be the one who makes the decision, as if he has not just done so. "The fact remains that only the Pope has the power to bind and loose. Faced with all opposition - the strongest of which being that of those closes to him -, it is to him that belongs, in fine, the right to decide. After twelve years of discussions, at the end of seven years of pontificate, this man, who a few weeks ago said that enough injustices had been committed against the Society, will set in place the endpoint which he alone, as head of the Church, has the right to set in place."

This seems rather a melancholy hope, but who is to say that it is entirely without foundation? The fact that Benedict does not believe in the Resurrection is no reason to suppose that he doesn't believe in any resurrection.

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Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:53 am
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New post Re: More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact
And now even more incredible spin from the same hopeless source, Rorate Caeli.

Quote:
Op-Ed
The basis for the future relations of the SSPX with Rome
a guest-post by Côme de Prévigny


The Spanish observers should be careful. This is not the first time they are mistaken on the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX) by way of ready-made titles and misunderstood information. A few months ago, a colleague of José Manuel Vidal had affirmed that the discussions between Rome and Écône had ultimately failed. He was forced to turn around due to his rashness.

It is true that, on June 13, Cardinal William Levada had delivered to Bp. Bernard Fellay, Superior of the Society, a text to be ratified. Against every expectation, considering that the predictions had been optimistic, new and surprising demands had een added to the text and created an impasse following nine months of negotiations. Even before the General Chapter had assembled, the Secretary General of the SSPX had been driven to state, in a letter dated June 25, that the Roman proposal was "unacceptable". Less than 48 hours later, the man responsible for the dossier, Mgr. Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Ecclesia Dei Commission, had been placed under a Vice-President who took charge of the matter from then on. One week later, it was Cardinal Levada who took the path to retirement.

That the SSPX would state that the proposal of the predecessor did not suit it is clear. To affirm it is to force an open door. And the Pope already took it into consideration several weeks ago because he changed the interlocutors of the SSPX, admitting that the previous ones had failed on that famous June 13. By submitting the affair to an Archbishop Vice-President with whom he has direct communication, and not anymore to a Monsignor secretary, he reshapes relations with the Society on different bases.

The latest SSPX communiqué stated that it will address a declaration to Rome. This text will undoubtedly serve as grounds for the upcoming relations. Those who think that this is the endpoint, that those in charge of the Fraternity have definitively given up on the idea of putting an end to the injustices that burden them, and of fulling restoring the Tradition of the Church to Rome, risk being disappointed in the days and weeks ahead. Abp. Lefebvre said that the solution would come from Rome. It is precisely for this reason that he never stopped going there.


Apart from pointing out that Rorate Caeli was the publisher of the speculations of the Spanish journalist, instead of ignoring what he said, as all responsible publishers did, I will merely paste in below my prediction of this latest spin effort from Rorate, showing how utterly predictable these liberals are, and how entirely subjective their "analysis" really is.

Yesterday, on Fisheaters:
Quote:
Rorate is extreme left itself. That's why they don't want to know that there's no possibility of a deal until it's absolutely impossible to ignore.

There's no deal. That's why this is a joint statement (i.e. a statement of the General Chapter) instead of leaving Bishop Fellay and his assistants to work out a text later.

When the text comes out, Rorate will probably spin it by focussing on the fact that it leaves the door open (which, obviously, it will, since the SSPX is not sede). But the door has always been open, so in this new text that will be nothing but boilerplate. The part that will matter will be the part that says we're not going to cooperate with men who profess religious liberty etc.

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Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:11 am
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New post Re: More spin from Rorate Caeli - hoping against fact
Rorate Caeli has finally cottoned on to the fact that there isn't going to be a reconciliation with the Modernists. I wonder how long it will take the anti-SSPX Internet rumourists to come to the same conclusion?

http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2012/0 ... -sspx.html

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Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:08 am
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