SSPX denies validity and licitness of NO?


Conversing with a pro-SSPX apologist, I was basically told that the Novus Ordo mass is not only illicit but also invalid as a mass. Which implies that it is basically sinful to attend.

The arguments include that the Second Vatican Council had some heretical statements (To which they say the entire council is akin to personal opinions basically), the promulgation of the NO was not done in the proper way, and that it violates the previous papal declaration that the form of Mass was not to be changed.

Is there any truth to what they say? (I had the reaction to be skeptical of those claims and understand it’s best to avoid SSPX, however this is an ongoing conversation we are having that I placed on hold)

If not, how would one go about responding to these claims?


Well, you can research sources like Ewtn, Catholic Answers, etc, for specific details to those questions, but I suspect he has a answer for them.

You have to, gently, push him to defend the current authority of SSPX. They have no Pope, no bishop ordinary, not even one pastor. They are not in communion with any of those, either.

He might say they know they are right because they read tradition, but Catholicism is not based on sola traditio. Have him read documents from St Pius X, especially Catholic Action. How important did HE regard the living - current - magisterium?

The SSPX Resistance is one of many groups that has broken off, claiming to be the “true” SSPX. By what authority can sspx dispute them?


What? Yes they do. They acknowledge Pope Francis as the supreme Pontiff of the Church. They’re not sedevacantist. Groups like the SSPV and MCRI are sedevacantist and actually believe the SSPX is, of all things, modernist! What do you mean they have no bishops or pastors? Their Holy Orders are valid. Illicit, sure, but they are actual priests and bishops that dispense valid (though depending on the sacrament, illicit) sacraments.


They acknowledge Pope Francis is the Pipe, as many Protestants do, but are not under his teaching authority.

They have bishops, but no bishop ordinary, no diocese of their own, and not under the authority of any diocese.

They have no parishes. They have chapels, not the same thing. They do not have, do not claim to have, pastors. They have no ordinary who could appoint one, and no lay members to join one. Their priests and bishops are strictly sacramental ministers. The current head is a priest, not a bishop. He has no laity in relationship to him as Shepherd.


I don’t understand what you mean by that. Their acknowledgment of Pope Francis is not like that of the Protestants. They acknowledge that he has the charism of infallibility, for one.

Canonically speaking, no. But that is quite different than saying they have no bishops. They can however ask permission from the diocese to conduct licit marriages. This was granted to them by Pope Francis. The sacrament of confession is also licit.

There are no lay members of the SSPX to begin with. It’s a priestly fraternity, not a religious order.

So? So is the head of the FSSP. So is the head of the Dominicans.


Who said they have no bishops? One can argue over which bishops count as part of SSPX at present - Some may claim they were wrongly expelled - but yes they have valid bishops. But the bishops are not in relationship to laity, unlike St Pius X view.


I may have misread you on that, and I apologize for it.


True. They do have a defacto laity. But read St. Pius X writings on the Church - how parish, diocese, relate to laity and Church Universal.

Did he think it prudent for laity to be attached to some entity with no pastor or Ordinary?


The SSPX would probably retort that he wouldn’t think it prudent to lead them into optional heresy.


The problem is who decides the true SSPX interpretation, or even who currently “belongs”? Some argue Bishop Williamson is still True sspx, along with others in the Resistance. They all claim to be true followers of the Archbishop.


Oh boy…
As far as I remember they have a pope, Francis.
And they have three bishops.
And they have hundreds of priests.

And it seems you know nothing, Jon Snow.


Pretty much like any order religious congregation.


They have bishops and priests. They do not have, do not claim to have, any bishop ordinary or pastors. They do not have , do not claim to have , any parishes or dioceses. This is a problem when they have de facto laity. You have to read St Pius X and other popes to see why parishes and dioceses are important…

Laity served by Dominicans for instance, all belong to a parish, all are under a bishop ordinary, as are the clergy.


And if you read St. Pius X and other popes maybe you’ll stop to bash the SSPX.
Who knows?


First of all, these claims about the Novus Ordo and the SSPX are not true.
If you truly want to respond these claims, read their website and watch their videos on youtube, you’ll find some of the answers you seek there.
Maybe he/she is a member of the so called “resistance”.

Why it’s best to avoid the SSPX?


I say this repeatedly, though it makes little difference. They have the same pope we do.


If you want to believe that the Catholic Mass is invalid, then you must believe that Catholic ordinations are invalid also. Confirmations, absolutions, annointings, also. Don’t kid yourself that they don’t believe that. That is where schism leads.


Ok, would you agree they have no bishop ordinary, and no pastors?

Regards the Pope, are any of their priests and bishops assigned to a position by the Pope? Is the Pope able to remove any from their current position?

There are various other offshoots from the Church, mostly on the Left, who may have at least some valid priests and bishops. I’m thinking of American Catholic Church, and others. They support things like gay marriage, sometimes abortion. They also refer to Our Pope Francis. Do you think They really have a Pope, too?

It does no good to say they don’t count, they’re heretics, they say they are faithful


As far as I know the SSPX Eucharist sacrament is not licit. So how can I with a good concience partake in this sacrament at one of their chapels?


Ecumenical Councils are under the direction of the Holy Spirit. They don’t teach heresy.

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