Do SSPX priests still have faculties to hear confessions?


Do SSPX priests still have the faculties to hear confessions granted by Pope Francis during the Jubilee Year of Mercy?

I can tell you that they are very, very good confessors. May not always tell you what you want to hear, but sometimes, that is precisely what is called for.


Yes, they were extended past the Year of Mercy.


Let me rephrase. Has the extension ever been revoked?


Not as far as I am aware, no.


I would advise you to stay away from SSPX. I adore the Latin Rite, there is so much beauty and piety in the mass…however, SSPX has an irregular status (aka, not in full communion) and the sacraments are not licit. For example, Sunday attendance does not satisfy the weekly obligation and other than the year of mercy, confessions are not valid. I would try to find a Latin mass near you that is in full communion with the church that you can attend.


As far as I’m aware, their faculties for hearing confessions have not been revoked, and thus you may frequent them for confession, especially if they are good confessors; this would be spiritually profitable.


Both Cardinal Perl and the Ecclesia Dei commission concede that, in fact, attendance at an SSPX Mass does fulfill the obligation:

Given the present irregular situation (and the fact that I have diocesan TLMs within similar driving distance), I do not regularly attend the SSPX, but neither do I shun them, for precisely this reason.


The Vatican has the final say, and according to them they are not in full communion.

You may attend if there are no other Catholic masses reasonably rear you to attend for the Sunday obligation. Last resort you may, but only that.


False, they have authority from Pope Francis to hear confessions and give certain marriages


Agree, I went a couple of weeks ago. Gave me very concrete suggestions on how not to repeat same sins and worked wonderfully


I said “other than then year of mercy”. So yes I understand. But outside of that, then no the sacraments are not licit. Their founder decided that he knew better than the Pope so he illicitly ordained his own clergy WITHOUT permission from the Holy Father, therefore severing the bond to the Holy Catholic Church. They are not a part of the Church, so they have no authority perform the mass, hear confessions, or perform marriages. The faithful are not advised to mingle with the SSPX until full communion is established once more.


Source for this? Did the Vatican issue some sort of directive that narrowed down Ecclesia Dei’s presumably blanket concession that SSPX attendance, in general, is permissible?


I found this to be a insightful read.


“For the Jubilee Year I had also granted that those faithful who, for various reasons, attend churches officiated by the priests of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X, can validly and licitly receive the sacramental absolution of their sins.[15]For the pastoral benefit of these faithful, and trusting in the good will of their priests to strive with God’s help for the recovery of full communion in the Catholic Church, I have personally decided to extend this faculty beyond the Jubilee Year, until further provisions are made, lest anyone ever be deprived of the sacramental sign of reconciliation through the Church’s pardon.

They have the faculties to hear confessions from Pope Francis himself.


Yes I acknowledged that. This is an extention of the the year of mercy to allow confessions that would otherwise be invalid.


You mean illicit, correct? Their Holy Orders are 100% valid.


Please stop misrepresenting the Holy Father. He extended faculties for confession and marriage beyond year of mercy


Yes! I understand! What I’m saying is that they need a special dispensation to perform confessions because of their irregular status. Where as a normal priest would have the full authority to perform confessions whenever he wants because of the authority of the church that backs him. SSPX are not in full communion and that is what the Church is trying to fix. If you are a practicing Catholic, you should avoid societies and groups that label themselves as Catholic, but do not have true union with the Church.


Yes and no. The Pope – the Bishop of Rome, supreme legislator of canon law whose authority is superior to all other bishops – gave them the faculties to hear confessions, by his own words, beyond the jubilee Year of Mercy. They don’t have to ask the local bishop because the Pope has already given it to them.

Not quite. Even the FSSP must have faculties granted to them by the local Ordinary to hear confessions, and their canonical status is most definitely not irregular. Dioscean priests must also ask for faculties when ministering in a diocese outside of their own. It may be different though for say, priests in a religious order like the Dominicans, but the FSSP and SSPX are not religious orders.

EDIT: Here’s an article over the subject of priestly faculties written by a canon lawyer:

It seems I’m a little bit mistaken. Diocesan priests can hear confessions in other dioceses, however, if the bishop of that diocese forbids them, then they may not. Here’s the fascinating part: being a priest by itself not only does not necessarily make the confession licit, but it also does not necessarily make it valid either. Such is the importance of being granted faculties. It should be noted, though, in that article it states that all priests have the faculty to hear the confession of someone dying.

You learn something new every day!


Yes. Their confessions are still permitted valid and licit. Their confection of the eucharist us valid but illicit. Their presiding over marriages are valid and licit with the caveat that they recie e permission from the territorial bishop. Their baptisms are valid. Ordinations are valid but illicit. I would assume confirmations are valid and licit since it’s an extension of baptism but I dont really know about that. Last rights would fall under the same ambiguity with regards to licitness but would be valid… again, I’m no canon lawyer but I’m pretty well versed in the sspx and their status.
I would also suggest visiting fr. Z’s blog and search. He directly addresses your original question with documents. (Fr Z is a traditional priest in communion with Rome and is not sspx)

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