Would Archbishop Lefebvre attend Bishop Schneider's Mass? A Letter in the Archbishop's own hand about the New Clergy
Ecône, 28 oct. 1988
Very dear Mr. Wilson,
thank you very much for your kind letter. I agree with your desire to reordain conditionally these priests, and I have done this reordination many times.
All sacraments from the modernists bishops or priests are doubtful now. The changes are increasing and their intentions are not more Catholic.
We are in the time of the great apostasy.
We need more and more bishops and priests very Catholic. It is necessary everywhere in the world.
Thank you for the newspaper article from the Father Alvaro Antonio Perez Jesuit!
We must pray and work hardly to extend the kingdom of Jesus-Christ.
I pray for you and your lovely family.
Devotly in Jesus and Mary.
And, also, we have here a letter from Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre to Bishop de Castro Mayer asking him to consecrate a bishop as his successor since recourse could not be had to a Rome that was Catholic. He said that he and Bishop de Castro Mayer must act as bishops did in the early Church because there "is the absolute need to continue the Catholic episcopacy in order to continue the Catholic Church." This letter was written only a few months before the Archbishop's death and, therefore, expresses his most considered judgment on the Modernist Crisis in the Church:
December 4, 1990
Very dear Msgr. Antonio de Castro Mayer,
Rumors reach me from Brazil concerning your health, which they say is declining! Is the call of God drawing nigh? The mere thought fills me with deep grief. How lonely I shall be without my elder brother in the episcopate, without the model fighter for the honor of Jesus Christ, without my one faithful friend in the appalling wasteland of the Conciliar Church!
On the other hand there rings in my ears all the chant of the traditional liturgy of the Office of Confessor Pontiffs... Heaven's welcome for the good and faithful servant! if such be the good Lord's will.
Under these circumstances, I am more than ever by your bedside, close to you, and my prayers mount unceasingly towards God for your intentions, entrusting you to Mary and Joseph.
I would like to make use of this opportunity to put in writing, for you and for your dear priests, my opinion - for it is only an opinion - concerning the eventual consecration of a bishop to succeed you in the handing down of the Catholic Faith and in the conferring of the sacraments reserved to bishops.
Why envisage such a successor outside of the usual norms of Canon Law?
Firstly, because priests and faithful have a strict right to have shepherds who profess the Catholic Faith in its entirety, essential for the salvation of their souls, and to have priests who are true Catholic priests.
Secondly, because the Conciliar Church, having now reached everywhere, is spreading errors contrary to the Catholic Faith and, as a result of these errors, it has corrupted the sources of grace, which are the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and the Sacraments. This false Church is in an ever-deeper state of rupture with the Catholic Church. Resulting from these principles and facts is the absolute need to continue the Catholic episcopacy in order to continue the Catholic Church.
The case of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X presents itself differently from the case of the Diocese of Campos. It seems to me that the case of the Diocese of Campos is simpler, more classical, because what we have here is the majority of the diocesan priests and faithful, on the advice of their former bishop, designating his successor and asking Catholic bishops to consecrate him. This is how the succession of bishops came about in the early centuries of the Church, in union with Rome, as we are too in union with Catholic Rome and not Modernist Rome.
That is why, as I see it, the case of Campos should not be tied to the Society of St. Pius X. Resort would be had to the Society's bishops for an eventual consecration, not in their role as bishops of the Society but as Catholic bishops.
The two cases should be kept clearly separated. This is not without its importance for public opinion and for present-day Rome. The Society must not be involved as such, and it turns over the entire responsibility - altogether legitimate - to the priests and faithful of Campos.
In order for this distinction to be quite clear, it would be altogether preferable for the ceremony to take place at Campos, at least outside the diocese. It is the clergy and the Catholic people of Campos who are taking to themselves a Successor of the Apostles, a Roman Catholic bishop such as they can no longer obtain through Modernist Rome.
That is my opinion. I think it rests upon fundamental principles of Church Law and upon Tradition.
Very dear Monsignor, I submit my thinking to you in all simplicity, but it you who are the judge and I bow to your judgment. May God vouchsafe to grant you strong enough health to perform this episcopal consecration!
Kindly believe, most dear Monseigneur, in my profound and respectful friendship in Jesus and Mary.
+ Marcel Lefebvre