(Rome) The conduct of Rome with traditional communities is completely varied. A significant aspect of this whether one is under an Order or the Institute. What difference does it matter whether it's an Old Ritual community of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei established in 1988, or religious congregation, depends on a comparison of the visitations of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate Conception and the Fraternity of St. Peter. In the North American District of the Fraternity of St. Peter, a proper Apostolic Visitation will be held. The routine operation has been arranged by the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, to which the Society belongs. As Rorate Caeli reported, a three-member visitor delegation was appointed. The main visitor is Bishop Vitus Huonder of Chur, co-visitators are Abbot Hervé Courau from the Benedictine Abbey of Notre-Dame de Triors in France and the Bishop Emeritus Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln in the United States.
Huonder Bishop, Bishop Bruskewitz and Abbot Courau as Visitors
Both Bishop Huonder and Bishop Bruskewitz are closely linked to the FSSP. They have already presided over ordinations of the Society more than once and have celebrated in the old rite. Bishop Huonder established the first traditional parish in the German-speaking world the and appointed a Society of St. Peter priest as the pastor. In the diocese of Lincoln, the Society erected their seminary in 1994 during the episcopate of Bishop Bruskewitz (1992-2012) in North America. Abott Courau heads a traditional Benedictine abbey in France. Notre-Dame de Triors is a subsidiary foundation Fontgombault. Abbot Courau visited the Cistercian Abbey of Heiligenkreuz near Vienna in the Autumn of 2013, where he celebrated in the traditional rite with the monks of the monastery who served at the altar.
In the case of the Fraternity of St. Peter it is an ordinary visitation. When the Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception extraordinary visitation was arranged in 2012 by the Congregation of Religious, is where the differences in treatment begin. The Fraternity of St. Peter is under the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei for Orders and Communities of the Old Rite. The appointed visitators are connected to the traditional rite. The starting point of the visit is supported by brotherly love and basically benevolent, as expected by the canon law.
Hostile Attitude of the Congregation of Religious Against Franciscans of the Immaculate
The situation was quite different with the Franciscans of the Immaculate. They are under the Congregation for Religious because they were established in 1990 as new rite Order. Following a gradual development under Pope Benedict XVI they had returned to the Immemorial Rite. The Congregation of Religious appointed a Visitor with Monsignor Vito Angelo Todisco who was openly hostile to the Order. He himself had briefly belonged to the Order at a young age, but had left and since repeatedly remarked disparagingly upon the Franciscan community of Father Stefano Maria Manelli. The basic intention of the Congregation of Religious was obviously directed from a bias in the very beginning against the Order. They culminated after July 2013, since with the abdication of Benedict XVI, the biggest obstacle had been removed to a radical intervention and the provisional administration of the Order. The Apostolic Commissioner, the Capuchin Fidenzio Volpi has since been working systematically towards the eradication of the traditional charism of the Order, to beat it back into a new ritual Order and thus to be "normalized".
The Franciscans of the Immaculate sought contact with the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, but they were not under it. The request, in the fall of last year, the request to establish a new old ritual Order under the supervision of Ecclesia Dei after the establishment of the provisional administration and the banning of the old rite was not previously considered by the Congregation of Religious. The open revelation of these brothers was followed instead by the Commissar making more purges.
"Keep all institutes and communities of Ecclesia Dei in your prayers" this call ends Rorate Caeli the report on the appointment of the Visitors of the Fraternity of St. Peter.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Picture: Rorate Caeli
Picture: Rorate Caeli