More priests are leaving the Society of St. Pius X. In August 2009 Fr. Juan Carlos Ceriani did so. We did not translate his letter, because it is much longer than TIA’s normal postings. However, you may read its Spanish original here.
On April 5, 2010 it was Fr. Juan José Turco’s turn. He addressed a letter to Bishop Bernard Fellay, head of the SSPX, explaining why he could stay no longer in it. TIA was asked by readers to translate to English this document from its Spanish original. The title and subtitles are ours.
Letter to the Superior General of SSPX, Bishop Bernard Fellay
Fr. Juan José Turco
Bogotá, April 5, 2010.
Monday in the Octave of Easter
After informing you of what has happened with me on a personal level (with the correspondence that I sent you yesterday) and after having received your replies, I see no point to continue writing. In good conscience I cannot agree with what is being done by both Your Excellency and the other Fathers.
First and foremost, I refer to all the doctrinal flaws involved in the present talks with Rome.
In short, let me mention the following:
- The doctrinal flaw of accepting pre-conditions;
- Did you or did you not ask for the lifting of the excommunication?
- Why were things that Archbishop Lefebvre has said and done hidden or misrepresented?
- How it is possible to attribute to the Virgin Mary [the accomplishment of] pre-conditions involving modernist errors and falsehoods?
- How can we have continued on [with the talks] despite the fact that Rome has not converted?
- How can you present a false image of Benedict XVI as if he would be regularly favoring Tradition? How does he show this? Is it by his saying that the Traditional Mass is subordinate to the New Mass or by seeking to merge the two? Is it by his lifting of the excommunication as if it were valid? Is it by his saying that we are outside of the Church if we do not accept the Council? Is it by his using the image of the Curé of Ars to encourage "the active participation of the laity" or his embellishing of Modernism with "holiness" and "piety" in order to thus save the modernist liturgy?
I place these questions along with the other points presented in the letters I sent to you in October and November of last year (2009).
Smiles and concessions in the talks with Rome
In good conscience I cannot agree to these talks and their flaws:
Fellay: ‘An authentic renewal started…’
- Because we are forced to remain silent (the facts can prove it);
- Because I foresee that we will continue to make doctrinal concessions;
- Because, according to statements of the Society, I see that what is intended is not to convert Rome, but to reach a canonical solution regardless of whether we shred the doctrine and the liturgy in the process;
- Because I foresee that we will align ourselves with those [who accepted the conditions] of Ecclesia Dei;
- Because the way these talks are being conducted is a betrayal of Archbishop Lefebvre.
Second, in good conscience I cannot agree with many of your statements.
In addition to those I have mentioned on other occasions, I want to affirm here that it seems incredible to me that the Superior of the SSPX can make such error of judgment as to write to me: "If someone, as you claim, like Fr. Ceriani, that everyone [in the Vatican] is modernist, then think again. You are outside of the reality and the truth".
Or when you wrote: "A renewal of the Church has started. It is very difficult, but authentic."
Ideological persecution inside SSPX
Third, because of the doctrinal implications in the talks:
I cannot agree to the prohibitions which demanded that I remain silent about the Modernism of Benedict XVI. It is incredible that this has occurred in the Society of Saint Pius X.
Fourth, I cannot agree with – and once again I protest – the abuse of authority that has taken place:
No official criticism permitted of Benedict's visit to the Rome Synagogue In January 2010
It is absolutely incredible how deep you – and the other Superiors of the Society – have fallen to avoid any talk about the flaws in these discussions with Rome and to persecute those who dare to raise objections.
- The threat that I would have to leave the Society unless I remained silent about the Modernism of the Pope;
- The expulsion of Bucaramanga based on lies;
- The alleged canonical admonitions preparing for my expulsion;
- The prohibition to carry out any ministry and to hear confessions.
Bishop Fellay, it is your decision whether to continue with these talks. My conscience cannot agree either with the doctrinal flaws included in them or with the abuse of authority that has been made. In good conscience, I cannot officially concur with what the SSPX is doing at present, and, for that reason, I see myself forced to leave the Society.
Decision to leave
Therefore, be aware that for the reasons exposed above, today I leave the Society of Saint Pius X. Should the Society at any time cut off these talks that are destroying it and return to clearly denouncing the Modernism of the Pope and the official Church, I will request permission to enter the Society once again.
May God and the Virgin help us all.
Fr. Juan José Turco
This letter was posted on Radio Cristiandad under the headline
“Father Juan José Turco continues the good combat.”
It can be read in Spanish here.
Posted May 5, 2010
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Rumblings from the SSPX Pews
The SSPX Acceptance of Vatican II
Fellay to Guimarães: Your Critique Is a Delirium
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