SSPX in schism? Can we attend their Masses?

The blog posting below seems to suggest that:

  1. The SSPX are not in schism
  2. We CAN attend their Masses given the fact that we cannot attend a Tridentine Mass by FSSP or some other Vatican-sanctioned group.

I believe I agree with this blog. Now, before you start arguing with me. Take a look at the blog posting please. It contains quotes from the Vatican to back up its position.

Can. 844 §2 Whenever necessity requires or a genuine spiritual advantage commends it, and provided the danger of error or indifferentism is avoided, Christ?s faithful for whom it is physically or morally impossible to approach a catholic minister, may lawfully receive the sacraments of penance, the Eucharist and anointing of the sick from non-catholic ministers in whose Churches these sacraments are valid.

This was originally intended for those who wished to attend an Orthodox liturgy but it should work for SSPX, since their Masses are definitely valid.

It also works for all independent chapels celebrating the TLM.


No, it is not permitted for Catholics to attend SSPX Masses at all! In his apostolic letter, “Ecclesia Dei” Pope John Pall II wrote that Catholics should CEASE THEIR SUPPORT IN ANY WAY for the SSPX movement:

“ c.) In the present circumstances I wish especially to make an appeal both solemn and heartfelt, paternal and fraternal, to all those who until now have been linked in various ways to the movement of Archbishop Lefebvre, that they may fulfill the grave duty of remaining united to the Vicar of Christ in the unity of the Catholic Church, and of ceasing their support in any way for that movement. Everyone should be aware that formal adherence to the schism is a grave offence against God and carries the penalty of excommunication decreed by the Church’s law.(8)…ia-dei_en.html


Catholics are allowed to attend SSPX Masses out of devotion for the Old Rite. They are not allowed to adhere to the schismatic mentality of the SSPX, and it is advised that one refrains from recieving Holy Communion there - as it implies one supports the Society’s questionable canonical status.

The SSPX are not in schism. Read the latest pronouncements from ‘Ecclesia Dei’ about this issue, and about attending SSPX Masses.


(P.S… before anyone even thinks of accusing me, I am NOT SSPX…)

I think you should brush up on these:

From Father Serpa:
%between%** May a Catholic attend a SSPX Mass regularly?**

Am I sinning by attending an SSPX chapel?

Read the latest pronouncements from ‘Ecclesia Dei’ about this issue, and about attending SSPX Masses.

You should read my post again, this quote IS from Ecclesia Dei!

…ceasing their support in any way for that movement

a) Id rather get my information from Ecclesia Dei, and the Cardinal in charge of it, than from apologists on CAF - who surprisingly, are not the sole Authority of Catholicism.


Read the latest pronouncements from ‘Ecclesia Dei’ about this issue, and about attending SSPX Masses.

Latest being the operative word.

You should read the dates. This response from Ecclesia Dei is dated 2003. The one you referred to is dated 1998.

Father Serpa is not on part of the commission. He’s priest at Catholic Answers. He is wrong. What Ecclesia Dei says what we should listen to.

Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos is Rome’s OFFICIAL spokesman for traditionalist affairs.

In a highly significant statement, he clarified this week that the SSPX are NOT in schism. It’s a watershed moment for traditionalists.

  1. Yes, they are in schism.

  2. Yes, if you can worship at an Eastern “Orthodox” or Protestant church then in my book you can attend a SSPX Mass. SSPXers are not the demons they are made out to be and most of their homilies are good. The exceptions are when they attack the the Church are the Pope. So its the same as attending a Protestant serivce long as your faith is strong enough not to be fooled by their anti-Church rants (which are in themselves uncommon) then you may go.

CatholicNick and Alex V,

You guys are right (at least in my humble opinion).

I’ll never buy into the 1000’s of would-be apologists and NO Catholic priests. They all have an agenda. (as do we all, only mine is Traditionalism).

Ever notice that the squealers and howlers are generally always Novus Ordo advocates?

Keep working and praying!

I couldn’t find a link for this, do you have one?

And do you think the derogatory remarks about people help the argument? I am just trying to learn, calling people squealers and howlers, remarks about priests, etc. certainly isn’t very Christian. I am just posting what I thought, if something new is out great - name calling doesn’t help.

Did I make a “derogatory” remark? Nope. Don’t start fires.

You didn’t, they are on this thread. I am sure you read the thread and saw the remarks.

I asked you if you had a link to back up your statement that a significant statrement was made this week. I couldn’t find it.

I mean 1988.

Thought you did :slight_smile:

Didnt want to correct you for fear of sounding too ‘cocky’, as it were.

Yeah I read Domus Dei a few hours ago, and putting the information together it really does appear that we may in good faith attend the SSPX if the FSSP or Indult is not around.

I believe these statements to be the first step in full reconciliation. I for one, have an indult that I attend. However for others who do not it may be a more joyous moment.

I would still caution to be wary of individual priests in the SSPX, but as a whole it is excellent news.

Trident59. I believe the derogatory remarks awalt is referring to is the “howlers” and “squealers” comment above. I would tend to agree with him that this should be avoided for the sake of sticking to the debate in charity.

However, I do agree with your side of the debate Trident59.

I agree. The article does make alot of sense and I believe the Holy See’s current position is a result of wanting to move towards reconciliation. Their current position certaintly isn’t the same as it was almost 20 years ago.

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