Choices and decisions

 

“It is paradoxical, but only the Society can help the Church, in reminding the popes and the bishops that Our Blessed Lord founded a monarchical Church and not a chaotic modern assembly. The day will come when this message will be heard. But, for the moment, it is our duty to keep this deep sense of the Church and its hierarchy, despite the battlefield and ruins that lay before our eyes.”

 

In this new interview, the Superior General of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, Father Davide Pagliarani, speaks of choices and decisions, contrasting those of the modernists who claimed victory at the Second Vatican Council with the decisions and choices of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and those priests who have followed him, remaining true to the Church’s perennial mission. To whom does the future belong? Father Pagliarani has some interesting insights.

La Porte Latine – It has now been five months since you were elected Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X, for a twelve-year mandate. These five months have certainly allowed you to make a short overview of the work, founded by Archbishop Lefebvre, complementing your already rich personal experience. What general impression have you made and have you drawn up your first priorities for the coming years?

Father Pagliarani: The Society is a work of God, and the more we discover it, the more we love it. Two things strike me most in discovering the Society’s labours. Firstly, the providential character of the Society: it is the result of the result of choices and decisions of a saint, guided only by a supernatural and “prophetic” prudence, whose wisdom we appreciate even more as the years go by and as the crisis in the Church gets worse. Secondly, I have been able to see that we are not some privileged people, whom God has spared: He sanctifies all our members and our faithful through failures, trials, disappointments, and in a nutshell, through the Cross – and not by any other means.

 

La Porte Latine– With 65 new seminarians this year, the Society holds a new record of entries into its seminaries over the past thirty years. You were Rector of the La Reja Seminary (Argentina) for almost six years. How do you intend to foster the development of even more numerous and stronger vocations?

Father Pagliarani: I am convinced that the true solution to increase the number of vocations and their perseverance, does not reside primarily in human and, so to speak, “technical” means, such as newsletters, apostolic visits or publicity. First of all, a vocation needs to hatch in a home where Our Blessed Lord, with his Cross and His priesthood, is loved. A home where there is no spirit of bitterness or criticism towards priests. It is through osmosis, through contact with truly Catholic parents and priests deeply imbued with the spirit of Our Lord Jesus Christ that a vocation awakens. It is at this level that we must continue to work with all our strength. A vocation is never the result of speculative reasoning, or from a lesson we have received, with which we intellectually agree. These elements can help someone answer God’s call, but only if we follow what we said earlier.

La Porte Latine– On October 14th, Pope Francis canonised the Pope who personally signed all the documents of the Second Vatican Council, the Pope of the New Mass, the Pope whose pontificate was marked by 80,000 priests abandoning their priesthood. What does this canonisation mean for you?

Father Pagliarani: This canonisation must call us to a profound reflection, far beyond the emotions of the media that only lasted a few hours and left no deep traces, neither among its supporters nor its opponents. On the contrary, after a few weeks that singular emotion risks turning everyone to indifference. We must be careful not to fall into these traps.

Firstly, it seems to me quite obvious that with the beatifications or canonisations of all the popes since John XXIII, they have tried, in a certain way, to “canonise” the Council, the new conception of the Church and of Christian life, as established by the Council and promoted by all recent popes.

This is an unprecedented phenomenon in the history of the Church. The Church, after the Council of Trent, never dreamed of canonising all the popes without distinction, from Paul III to Sixtus V. She canonised only Saint Pius V, and not simply because of his links with the Council of Trent, or of its application, but because of his personal holiness, proposed as a model to the whole Church and put at the service of the Church as Pope.

The phenomenon we are currently witnessing makes us think rather of the renaming of roads and city centres, in the aftermath of a revolution or a change of regime.

However, it is necessary to interpret this canonisation also in the light of the present state of the Church, because the eagerness to canonise the Popes of the Council is a relatively recent phenomenon and was seen most clearly with the almost immediate canonisation of John Paul II.

This determination to “hurry things up”, shows once again the fragility in which the Post Vatican II Church, is currently situated. Regardless of whether you agree or not, the Council is seen as outdated by the ultra-progressive wing and by the pseudo-reformers, one example being the German episcopate. And on the other hand, the conservatives are forces to admit, by the proof of current circumstances, that the Council has triggered a process that is leading the Church towards increased sterility. Faced with this seemingly irreversible process, it is normal that the current hierarchy, through these canonisations, is trying to restore a certain value to the Council and thus slow down the inexorable tendency of concrete facts.

To make an analogy with civil society, every time a regime is in crisis and becomes aware of it, it tries to rediscover the country’s Constitution, its sacredness, its durability, its transcendent value… Whereas, in reality, it is a sign that everything that comes from this Constitution and that is based on it, is in peril of death and that one must try to save it by all possible means. History proves that these measures are generally insufficient to revive what has had its day.

Only the Society can help the Church, in reminding it that it is a monarchy and not a chaotic modern assembly

La Porte Latine– Three years ago (on October 17th, 2015), Pope Francis delivered an important address promoting “synodality” in the Church, inviting the bishops “to listen to God, so that with him we may hear the cry of his people; to listen to his people until we are in harmony with the will to which God calls us”. According to his own words, (Address of 25/11/2017), it was based on this new synodality, that he promulgated the new laws simplifying the procedure of nullity of marriage, and also that he wrote Amoris Laetitia,as a result of the synod on the family. Do you recognise in this the voice of the Holy Ghost? What can you tell us about this new expression used today by the authorities of the Church?

Father Pagliarani: The cyclical debate on synodality is nothing more than the repositioning in Post-Conciliar times, the Council’s doctrine on collegiality and the problems it has created in the Church.

In fact, they speak about it very often, even in debates that have other objectives or deal with other topics. One recent example was during the last synod on youth, where the subject was mentioned for the umpteenth time. This shows that the hierarchy has not yet found a satisfactory solution – and this is inevitable, since the problem is insoluble.

Indeed, collegiality places the Church in a permanent situation of a quasi-council, with the utopia of being able to govern the Universal Church with the participation of all the bishops of the world. This has provoked, from the national Episcopal Conferences, a demand for systematic and insatiable decentralisation, which will never end. We are faced with a kind of class-struggle by the bishops, that has produced, in some Episcopal Conferences, a spirit that could be defined as pre-schismatic. Again I am thinking of the German episcopate, which offers an example of all the current deformations. Rome is in a stalemate. On the one hand, concerning the Episcopal Conferences, she must try to save what she can of her undermined authority. On the other hand, she cannot reject the conciliar doctrine or its consequences, without bringing into question the authority of the Council, and consequently the basis of current ecclesiology. In reality, they all continue to advance in the same direction, albeit at different speeds.

The ongoing debates manifest this underlying discontent, and especially the fact that this revolutionary doctrine is fundamentally contrary to the monarchical nature of the Church. A satisfactory solution can never be found, as long as the problem is not definitively rejected.

It is paradoxical, but only the Society can help the Church, in reminding the popes and the bishops that Our Blessed Lord founded a monarchical Church and not a chaotic modern assembly. The day will come when this message will be heard. But, for the moment, it is our duty to keep this deep sense of the Church and its hierarchy, despite the battlefield and ruins that lay before our eyes.

La Porte Latine– How can the Church correct the errors of the Council? After fifty years, is it realistic to think that it will happen?

Father Pagliarani: From a purely human point of view, it is not realistic to think so, because we have a completely reformed Church, in every aspect of her life, without exception. There is a new conception of faith and of Christian life that has generated, on a daily basis and in a coherent manner, a new way of understanding and of living the Church. Humanly speaking, going back is impossible.

But perhaps we forget too often that the Church is fundamentally divine, despite the fact that she is incarnated in men and in the history of men. One day, a pope, against all expectations and against all human calculations, will take things in hand and all that needs to be corrected, will be corrected, because the Church is divine and Our Blessed Lord will never abandon her. In fact, he says exactly that when he solemnly promised that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18). The beauty of the divinity of the Church will be all the stronger, since the current situation seems irreversible.

La Porte Latine– 2018 was the thirtieth anniversary of the Episcopal Consecrations at Econe, conferred by Archbishop Lefebvre, in his extraordinary “Operation Survival” for Tradition. Do you consider that this act was unique by nature and that it was successful, in the sense that today other bishops agree to confer ordinations and administer confirmations in the traditional rite, or do you think that, as the years go by, other consecrations may need to be considered?

Father Pagliarani: The future of the Society is in the hands of Divine Providence. It is up to us to discern the signs, in the same way as our founder did, faithfully, without ever wanting to anticipate or ignore Divine Providence. We have here, the most beautiful lesson given to us by Archbishop Lefebvre, and many of those who did not understand him at the time, have gradually reversed their judgements on him.

The true spirit of our founder: a spirit of love for the Faith and truth, for souls and for the Church, in a spirit of genuine Charity between our members.

La Porte Latine – The District of France is the oldest and the largest district, even if it is now closely followed by the US District. What are the human, material and apostolic priorities that you have set for the new superior, Father de Jorna, who was the Rector of the Econe Seminary, for 22 years?

Father Pagliarani: The various priorities can be summed up in a few words. The new District Superior has the beautiful task of ensuring that the true spirit, bequeathed to us by our founder, reigns in all our houses and in all the members of the Society: a spirit of love for the Faith and truth, for souls and for the Church, and in particular, all that flows from it: a spirit of genuine Charity between our members. Insofar as we keep this spirit, we will have a good influence on souls and the Society will continue to attract many vocations.

La Porte Latine – What a beautiful and exciting program he has! However, it is necessary for the faithful to associate themselves fully with it. You saw them come in their thousands for the recent pilgrimage to Lourdes, during which you celebrated the Solemn High Mass on the Feast of Christ the King. What do you ask of them? What do you offer them?

Father Pagliarani: I was profoundly touched when I saw pilgrims of all ages in Lourdes, and in particular, many families, and many children. This pilgrimage is truly remarkable and also very significant. It reminds us that the future of the Church and vocations is in families where the parents have planted Our Blessed Lord’s Cross. Indeed, it is only Our Lord’s Cross, and the generosity that results from it, that produces large families. In front of our selfish and apostate society, chastised by its own sterility, there is no nobler and more precious testimony than that of a young mother surrounded by her children, like a crown. The world may choose not to listen to our sermons, but it cannot help but see this magnificent sight. It also is true for the Society. Ultimately, and I say it again, it is the same ideal of the Cross, which calls a soul to consecrate itself to God and which calls a mother to consecrate herself generously and unreservedly to the education and sanctification of all the children that Divine Providence wishes to entrust to her.

Finally, this pilgrimage also reminds us, and above all, that any revival can only happen under the mantle of the Blessed Virgin Mary, because in the current desert, there is no place in the world that continues to attract souls as much as Lourdes.

To the faithful of France, I say quite simply: remember that those who preceded you were fighters and crusaders, miles Christi, and that the current battle for the defence of the faith and the Church is without doubt the most important that history has ever known. (Sources: Maison générale – La Porte Latine – FSSPX.Actualités – 28/12/2018)

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Thus, the new Superior General of the Priestly Society founded by the saintly prelate, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, confirms his commitment, maintaining that:

“The providential character of the Society:… is the result of the result of choices and decisions of a saint, guided only by a supernatural and “prophetic” prudence, whose wisdom we appreciate even more as the years go by and as the crisis in the Church gets worse.”

May God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost continue to bless the Society and Father Pagliarani and may they remain always close to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Mother of the Church.

For a previous post which has a direct relevance to this interview by Father Pagliarani, I recommend : Apocalypse Chapters 1-3

Happy and Holy New Year for 2019!

Please pray the Rosary, for the love of the Immaculate Bride of Christ!

†  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
†  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!

~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!

Father Davide Pagliarani Interview

 

Recent interview with SSPX Superior General, Very Reverend Father Davide Pagliarani, from FSSPX News. (Link)

The following is merely a sampling from the interview which is well worth taking the time to read!

Q.: How do you regard the Society of Saint Pius X which you will have to supervise for twelve years?

The Society holds a treasure in its hands. Some have emphasized repeatedly that this treasure belongs to the Church, but I think that we can say that it belongs to us also by full right. It belongs to us, and this is why the Society is perfectly a work of the Church. Even now!

Tradition is a treasure, but in order to preserve it faithfully we must be aware that we are vessels of clay. The key to our future is found here: in the awareness of our weakness and of the need to watch over ourselves vigilantly. It is not enough to profess the faith in its entirety, if our lives do not express this integral faith regularly and concretely. To live Tradition means to defend it, to struggle for it, to fight so that it triumphs first in ourselves and in our families, so that then it can triumph throughout the whole Church.

Our fondest wish is that the official Church will stop considering Tradition as a burden or a set of outmoded old things, but rather as the only possible way to regenerate herself. However, major doctrinal discussions will not be enough to bring this work to completion: first we have to have souls ready for all sorts of sacrifices. This is true both for consecrated persons and for the lay faithful.

We ourselves must always renew our view of Tradition, not in a purely theoretical way, but in a truly supernatural manner, in light of the sacrifice of Our Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross. This will protect us from two contrasting dangers that often reinforce each other, namely: a pessimistic or defeatist lethargy and a kind of arid intellectualism.

I am convinced that we have here the key with which to confront the various difficulties that we may encounter.

Q.: Including the major problem of the crisis in the Church?

What are the important topics today? Vocations, the sanctification of priests, the care of souls. The tragic situation in the Church must not have such a great psychological impact on our minds that we are no longer capable of performing our duties. Our clear-sightedness must not paralyze us; if it does, it turns into darkness. Considering the crisis in the light of the Cross allows us to keep our serenity and to stand back, since serenity and objectivity are both indispensable if we are to have a sure judgment.

The present situation of the Church is a state of tragic decline: a sharp decrease in vocations, in the number of priests, in the practice of the faith, the disappearance of Christian customs, of the most elementary sense of God, which are manifested today—alas!— in the destruction of natural morality….

Now the Society has all the necessary means to lead the movement of the return to Tradition. More precisely, we have to confront two demands:

– on the one hand, to preserve our identity by recalling the truth and denouncing error: “Praedica verbum: insta opportune, importune: argue, obsecra, increpa.” “Preach the word: be instant [persistent] in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke” (2 Tim 4:2);

– on the other hand: “in omni patientia, et doctrina,” “in all patience and doctrine” (ibid.): attract to Tradition those who are walking in that direction, encourage them, introduce them little by little to the battle and to an increasingly courageous attitude. There still are authentically Catholic souls who thirst for the truth, and we have no right to refuse them the cup of cold water that is the Gospel by an indifferent or haughty attitude. These souls often end up encouraging us by their own courage and determination.

These two demands are complementary: we cannot separate one from the other, by focusing exclusively either on the denunciation of the errors resulting from Vatican II, or on the assistance that we owe to those who are becoming aware of the crisis and need to be enlightened. This twofold demand is profoundly one, since it is the manifestation of the sole charity of truth.

Continue reading “Father Davide Pagliarani Interview”

Father Davide Pagliarani

The Blessed Virgin Mary has always been present in the history of the Society 

Fr. Davide Pagliarani, the newly elected Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X, kindly accepted to answer the questions asked by FSSPX NEWS in a video interview. Here is the written transcription of his answers.

Reverend Superior General, how do you feel after your election?

Let’s say that I had, of course, heard some rumors beforehand. However, I was wondering how much of it was a joke or if there was anything to it at all. So I was waiting until today. I have to admit that even now, I’m not sure how much I realize what happened today.

It’s been a long day, but the week before, during our retreat, I left everything in the hands of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Divine Providence. I really think that she has always been present in the history of the Society. She is also guiding this Chapter and all of us. But maybe it’s too early yet for me to think about it.

Could you please introduce yourself?

I’m from Rimini, a town on the Adriatic coast of Italy, where there has been a priory of the Society for a long time. That’s where I first came in contact with the Society of Saint Pius X. I entered the Seminary of Flavigny in 1989. Then I did my military service. In 1996, I was ordained a priest. I spent seven years as a priest in the town where I was born, three years in Singapore, then I came back to Italy, and I have been in Argentina for six and a half years. And now I’m here.

Until now you were rector of the seminary in Argentina…

I think that what’s going to be hardest for me will be having to leave that place. I find that it’s the most beautiful place for a priest, and in particular for a priest of the Society. The heart of the Society is our seminaries. It’s not Menzingen! I think you know what I mean…

That’s where priests are formed and you can see how grace, still today, can completely transform a young man. Every vocation is a miracle, and I’m convinced that you fully understand what the Society is when you’ve worked in a seminary.

What do you expect from your two assistants?

I have to admit that they are two men for whom I have great respect. I know them fairly well because I knew Father Bouchacourt in Argentina, and I also know Bishop de Galarreta quite well. I consider myself quite lucky to work with people older than myself, people who give sound advice and, I have to say, with a priest as friendly as Father Bouchacourt.

Do you have any projects planned for the Society of Saint Pius X?

The goal of the Society is the formation of priests. However, at the same time, the priest has to continue to mature, to learn, and to sanctify himself his whole life long. I believe that’s where we need to concentrate all of our efforts to help priests persevere in the quest for holiness.

I really think that each priest, each priestly life, is a little bit like a violin cord that has to be correctly tightened and adjusted so that it can always produce the right note…the note that God expects from each one of us. So from seminary life and training to what is expected of the priest afterwards in the ministry, a certain unity and continuity in the quest for holiness must continue. I am convinced that this is the solution to the majority of our problems.

What do you expect from the faithful and what do you think that they expect from you?

That’s a good question. It’s easy to answer the first part. First of all, I would like to thank the faithful for all of their prayers for this Chapter and tell them that the Chapter has only just begun. So now we have to discuss with all the subjects on the agenda over the next few days. Thus I thank them for their prayers since the month of January, and I ask them now to generously redouble their efforts.

And then, what do they expect from me? I think that they expect the Society to be faithful to its foundational mission. I’ve already mentioned that it was founded to form priests, but the priesthood exists for the sanctification of souls, and so the fidelity of priests to their priesthood, to their own sanctification, necessarily affects the faithful. That’s what the faithful expect, not only from me, but from all the priests of the Society.

Reposted from the Society of Saint Pius X, here.

   

Return to Fatima Editor: And so we see that our new Superior General is devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary and faithful to the foundational mission of saintly Archbishop Lefbvre, which is to form holy priests and through those priests the sanctification of souls. I especially liked this quote:

I believe that’s where we need to concentrate all of our efforts to help priests persevere in the quest for holiness. . . . each priest, each priestly life, is a little bit like a violin cord that has to be correctly tightened and adjusted so that it can always produce the right note…the note that God expects from each one of us. So from seminary life and training to what is expected of the priest afterwards in the ministry, a certain unity and continuity in the quest for holiness must continue. I am convinced that this is the solution to the majority of our problems.

This is the man we have prayed for! Blessed be God forever! Now we must continue our prayers and sacrifices to support our priests but also, with those prayers, many joyful rosaries for thanksgiving for this blessing we are given.

Update, 8:15 am, A reader has pointed out that we should understand the inevitability of a particularly vicious attack from the ancient enemy, for this is his hour and the power of darkness. As Father requested, please redouble your prayers.

Please, Pray the Rosary for all our Catholic priests!

† . Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
† . Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
† . St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.