I believe that we have to make some important distinctions here.
One must always be merciful. The clergy of the SSPX are in a canonical bind. We can’t sweep that under the rug by saying, “This will soon change.” That’s pure speculation. We know that they signed the Preamble. We don’t know if Cardinal Levada likes what he read. If he does not like it, he will not recommend it to the pope. It’s best to wait and call the situation what it is. They remain suspended. However, that does not mean that we must be unkind to them or not interested in their welfare anymore than we would be for anyone else who was in a pickle.
It is true that many Traditionalists, even here, went from justifying Archbishop Lefebvre’s actions to saying that they were not right, but they got us what we wanted, so we thank him for messing up. That kind of thinking is very weird. You should never get anything, because someone else messes up, even if what you get is a good thing.
As much as I like the Tridentine mass, I’m not grateful to Archbishop Lefebvre. The man messed up. If it was God’s will that we get it, God would have found a way without using sin. God does not advise sin to get his way and neither should we.
There are many people who mimic the rhetoric of some SSPX priests. That’s sad. Just today I read a post in another thread where someone warns me that when we the Traditionalists bishops take over they will clean house of the modernists and conciliarist bishops. This kind of rhetoric is defiant, arrogant, judgmental and divisive. I love heaven more than I love tradition. Spiteful rhetoric is not the way to get there. As I have said before, there is a difference between the Church Militant and the Church Belligerent.
At the end of the day, we must always be merciful to the sinner, charitable to the prodigal son and rejoice in his change of heart. The story of the prodigal son teaches us as much about the son who stayed home as it does about the one who left.
The SSPX is the son who left. We are the son who stayed home. Hopefully, our attitude is not that of the son who stayed home, but whined and complained because he was not being celebrated and his prodigal brother was. Instead of being like Joseph in the OT who welcomes his treacherous brothers when they arrived in Egypt, the prodigal son could not see past his self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is the first step toward the fall.
Br. JR, FFV