UPDATE: SSPX and the Wojtylan Catechism

As expected, my previous post criticizing the article published by the Society of St. Pius X on Homokardinal Marx received no small amount of knee-jerk pushback from some of its staunchest defenders. Here, I am referring to those who immediately rush to put a “traditional” Catholic spin on the SSPX’s every word and deed no matter how offensive or misleading they may be. 

Perhaps no better examples can be cited than those who rushed to defend the Society’s official response to the blasphemies and heresies put forth in Amoris Laetitia (a Bergoglian apologetic written by Fr. Jean-Michel Gleize) and, more recently, the sell-out of certain SSPX District Superiors to civil authorities who audaciously decreed the suspension of Holy Mass in light of the COVID scamdemic.     

In the present case, a bit of perspective may be useful.

In 2017, I shared with readers some of the insights that were kindly afforded to me by SSPX leadership concerning its then current editorial approach to news items related to various happenings in the conciliar church. 

In short, the SSPX noted that the Bergoglian reign of terror is causing so-called “conservatives” to search its pages for authentic Catholic tradition. In light of this, their communications team made a conscious decision to tread lightly in their criticism of the conciliar church and its “full communion” prelates (especially the likes of Burke, Schneider, and even Bergoglio).

In other words, they were keen that their reporting would provide a soft landing place for disaffected neo-cons, avoiding vehement condemnations of contemporary errors, in the hope that these seekers of truth would then dig deeper into its webpages, giving its more in-depth traditional treatments a closer look.

The SSPX article on Homokardinal Marx’s “New Attack on the Catechism” is a perfect example of that kind of soft landing place.

With this in mind, if you happen to be one of those people who think my criticism is unfair, go back and reread the SSPX article through the eyes of a sincere disaffected neo-con in search of truth. If you’re honest, you must admit two things:

– One, the neo-con reader will most certainly come away believing that the Wojtylan Catechism – the one clearly under discussion – “is nothing other than the teaching of the Church, dogmatic and moral, made available to the faithful.” The article provides no reason whatsoever for them to believe otherwise.

– Two, they will come away with exactly ZERO reason to investigate the Society’s well-written, and critically important, evaluation of the 1992 Catechism, published more than 25 years ago, wherein they rightly conclude that it is “a non-Catholic catechism.” 

NOTE: If – as its defenders insist – the SSPX wasn’t referring to the Wojtylan Catechism as “the teaching of the Church” but rather only to good catechisms more generally, one may wonder why they didn’t provide a link to their article condemning the 1992 book – the one Marx “attacked” – just to be clear?

The answer has already been given.

Some of the defenders of the SSPX in this case have taken a scalpel to their recent article, making arguments centered on the nuance between “catechism” (lowercase “c”) and “Catechism (uppercase “C”).

Think about just how preposterous such arguments are: If one needs to examine an article on the Catholic faith under a microscope – even going so far as to parse individual letters! – in order to give it a traditional reading, then it is no more traditional than the text of Vatican II or a letter from Francis. 

In conclusion, I have reached out to SSPX leadership for clarification, which they kindly agreed to provide. It is Holy Week. We must be patient. I will share their response when I receive it. 

What I hope to receive – or better, what I think is entirely reasonable to expect – are the following three things:

– An acknowledgement that their article may have confused readers as to the value of the 1992 Wojtylan Catechism.

– An explanation clearly stating that the Wojtylan Catechism (the one Marx “attacked”) is NOT “the teaching of the Church, dogmatic and moral,” (although its treatment of homosexuality is), repeating its previous conclusion that this book is “non-Catholic.”

– A note encouraging readers to click on a link (provided) to the Society’s full review of the 1992 Catechism of the Catholic [sic] Church wherein the reason for this unavoidable conclusion is provided in detail.

Now, tell me, dear defender of all things SSPX, is this too much to ask of the Society founded by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and bearing the name of the Holy Roman Catholic Church’s most recently canonized Pontiff?

Should we not expect straight forward clarity, devoid of any invitation to confusion, from every true defender of Catholic tradition?