SSPX Resistance

I’ve sometimes wondered what the SSPX will do when the bishops die… unless they (illicitly) consecrate more Bishops, the society itself will eventually die, no?
I just learned today that the Resistance splinter group, under Bishop Williamson, has indeed consecrated three more bishops. This didn’t seem to make a splash at all despite being HUGE (and an incredible act of open defiance and hubris). Did this result in the excommunication +Benedict lifted being reimposed on Bishop Williamson? Does this mean the Resistance will continue into future generations while the mainstream SSPX will not? Just curious.

Can’t answer your question as I don’t really know what the Resistance is but as an Eastern Catholic I find this whole SSPX business to be frankly ridiculous.

Seriously? I as an Easterner don’t have a Pope anymore just because something in the Latin Rite got changed? How precious.


As a Western Catholic, I find it ridiculous too. If the point was to restore the Latin Mass and some of the traditional practices again, we now have FSSP and ICKSP and Pope Benedict’s “Summorum Pontificorum”, so no more need for SSPX.

They are annoying and sullying the reputation of St. Pius X with their antics.


I honestly don’t think that the TLM was really the point, as evidenced by the continuing issue. There are much deeper issues.

@twf - As to what happens to the SSPX - is there really that much left to it? I just assume the remaining parishioners will drift into the FSSP as the clerics retire.

On Bishop Williamson, I don’t think that his excommunication was ever lifted. He was expelled from the SSPX for some of his… let’s call them controversial views and statements (to avoid lighting another firestorm). As a result, I thought he was not included in the lifting of the excommunications with the others.

One can only hope.

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No, I specifically remember that his excommunication was lifted, because it was a big scandal in the papers when he started spouting Holocaust denial rubbish AFTER the Pope Emeritus lifted the excommunications. The Resistance was formed at some point after that whole episode.

So, my question remains…was he and the bishops he consecrated excommunicated? What is the SSPX response to these additional “Resistance” bishops floating around?

Hmm. I remember it was at about the same time. I guess I got the order backwards. I think that means he is re-excommunicated, because illicit ordination of a bishop is one of those automatic deals, as I recall.

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I would think that “the same thing as last time” would be the starting point for such discussion or speculation . . .


Bishop Williamson’s original excommunication, as mentioned, was lifted along with those of the other bishops. However, Williamson again incurred a latae setentiae excommunication in March of 2015 when he consecrated another bishop without a papal mandate, so even if he did recently ordain more, he was already excommunicated.


While it would be great if the SSPX were to merge with one of those societies, or better yet, return to full canonical standing, I believe that your doubt about their current state of existence is a little off. Attendance at their chapels is by all accounts growing substantially, and they recently had to build a new seminary in Virginia. Even if they are not fully recognized in the near future, they’re not going away anytime soon.


But unless they take the path of the Resistance and consecrate new bishops, they will die… not as a matter of choice… nature will take its course. They have three choices: fully reconcile with Rome, go into full schism, or die.

I have heard for a decade or more that they are growing, etc, etc. But that never seems to come to pass. Maybe they are growing in ways that I don’t see - its not like I go out looking for them. As to being “fully recognized,” my opinion is that ship has sailed. Both Benedict and Francis have basically said that they all is forgiven if they only just admit that the Pope is valid and so is Vatican II. They have refused, so I don’t see what comes next. If they refuse to admit the validity of the Pope and an Ecumenical Council, I do not see how they can be fully regularized.

So do I


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The SSPX prays for Pope Francis and the local bishop at every Mass, plus they pray for the Pope at Benediction, Rosary etc.

Re VII: The SSPX has always insisted on a doctrinal agreement before regularization.

Any good lawyer will tell you that before you sign an agreement, both sides must agree on the definition of the terms used in the agreement.

Example: Tradition. The Vatican and the SSPX talk about Tradition but have two divergent understandings of Tradition. PJPII & BXVI often talked about the living Tradition of the Church. The SSPX says that Tradition is one of the two sources of the Deposit of the Faith, consisting in the teaching of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, the 20 Ecumenical Councils prior to VII, the perennial Magisterium etc.

So how can a doctrinal agreement be reached if both sides can’t agree on the definition of Tradition let alone other terms?

It is impossible for the Church to have been wrong for 1,961 years and then all of a sudden ‘get it right’ at VII.

The fundamental question is how VII is in continuity with all the councils from Jerusalem to Vatican I. The documents of VII have to be read in the light of the councils before it. That’s what BXVI was trying to do but didn’t finish it.


I know that at one parish I once visited, I learned in the homily that the Resurrection was “not so much historical reality as eternal mystery.”

When you hear outright heresy like that from a parish in full communion with Rome, it’s no wonder the SSPX has adherents.


As a daggum Anglican I find it ridiculous.

It’s asinine.


They don’t necessarily need to consecrate new bishops. Bishops who are already consecrated may chose to join them. I’m not sure if this has ever happened though. There are however priests who switched to the SSPX at some point during their careers.

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In other words, the SSPX claim the right to contradict an Ecumenical Council and condition their full participation in the Church on the Church giving them veto authority over Church teaching. Yes, I understand that is their position. I find it sad that they view participation in the Church as akin to negotiating a business deal. This is why, sadly, I don’t see full reconciliation happening.


The SSPX prays for the Pope to convert to the SSPX’s beliefs (what they call “Tradition,” which really isn’t). They don’t pray for the Pope like the rest of the Catholic Church does.

Vatican II didn’t change any teaching. It expanded and interpreted. The SSPX, however, teaches that VII changed teachings. The SSPX are in error about this… the Catholic Church is not.

I know these things because I grew up in the anti-Vatican II movement and the SSPX. I left in my mid-thirties. I also have a brother in the SSPX seminary, studying to be one of their priests, and I have a sister in an SSPX- supported convent. My parents and half of my family of origin and my extended family are still members of SSPX congregations. The things I say are true about the SSPX are true.


Williamson’s excommunication was lifted in 2009 but reinstated because of his antisemitic words on more than one occasion in Germany. I think that was in 2011.

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