54. Jahrgang Nr. 3 / März 2024
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Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Juni 2004
Eberhard Heller: Besuch aus Mexiko

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat April 2005
Nachruf auf P. Adler/Nachrichten

Ausgabe Nr. 9 Monat November 2004
Vier neue mexikanische Priester

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat April 2004

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat April 2003
Surrexit Christus, spes mea

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat April 2003
La silla apostólica ocupada

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat October 2003
L’Eglise Catholique-Romaine de la diaspora

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat October 2003
A propos de la situation actuelle de l’Eglise (fr.)

Ausgabe Nr. 11 Monat December 2003
The Apostolic See Occupied

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat März 2002
Christus ist auferstanden und dem Simon erschienen

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Mars 2002
Le Seigneur est ressuscité et il est apparu à Simon (fr/eng/spa)

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat September 2002
Der Apostolische Stuhl

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat November 2002
Offener Brief an H.H. Prof. Dr. August Groß und Abbé Seraphim

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat December 2002
Mèditation pour le temps de noël

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat December 2002
Le Siège apostolique < occupé >

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat December 2002
La consécration épiscopale du P. Guérard des Lauriers

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat December 2002
La sede apostolica

Ausgabe Nr. 7 Monat Diciembre 2001
Ha permitido Roma el viejo rito misal

Ausgabe Nr. 7 Monat Diciembre 2001
A la recherche de l'unité perdue

Ausgabe Nr. 7 Monat Diciembre 2001

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat April 2001
Christus erstand, Er, mein Hoffen

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Dezember 2001
Den Wiederaufbau im Visier

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat Januar 2002

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat April 2000
Über die Geheimnisse des Lebens Jesu Christi

Ausgabe Nr. 7 Monat März 2001
Hat Rom allen Priestern den erlaubt?

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 1999
Vom katholischen Priestertum heute

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Oktober 1999
Erscheint die Muttergottes wirklich in Marpingen?

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Februar 2000
In memoriam H.H. Pfr. i.R. Werner Graus

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 1998

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat August 1998
Nachtrag zum Briefwechsel mit Pfr. Paul Schoonbroodt

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Oktober 1998
Siebels Oratoriumswasser

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Dezember 1998
Er kam in sein Eigentum

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Februar 1998
Gott, von dem ich nicht einmal weiß, ob er überhaupt existiert

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Februar 1998
Anfrage an H.H. Abbé Paul Schoonbroodt

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat April 1993

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat Mai 1995

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Dezember 1994
In memoriam

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Dezember 1988

Ausgabe Nr. 8 Monat März 1989

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Oktober 2006
Zum Tode von Schw. Emilia Vaiciulis

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Februar 1984

Ausgabe Nr. 1 Monat Mai 1981

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat August 1981

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Oktober 1981

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat September 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Oktober 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Oktober 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Dezember 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Dezember 1980

Ausgabe Nr. 7 Monat April 1981

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juli 1977

Ausgabe Nr. 5 Monat Dezember 1976

Ausgabe Nr. 6 Monat Dezember 2007
Wo zwei oder drei in Meinem Namen versammelt sind

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 2008
Ich leide keinen Mangel

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat August 2008

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat April 2009
Die Holocaust-Latte liegt zu hoch!

Ausgabe Nr. 11 Monat Mai 2009
The Holocaust Bar is too High

Ausgabe Nr. 13 Monat Diciembre 2009

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Mai 2010

Ausgabe Nr. 13 Monat June 2011

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat Juni 2011
Mitteilungen der Redaktion - wichtige Hinweise

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat September 2012
In memoriam H.H. Pfr. Paul Schoonbroodt

Ausgabe Nr. 3 Monat September 2012
Mitteilungen der Redaktion, Hinweise

Ausgabe Nr. 4 Monat Dezember 2019
In memoriam Frau Irmgard Staude

Ausgabe Nr. 2 Monat April 2023
Clerici vagantes oder Priester der kath. Kirche – ein perpetum mobile ? der Fall Ramolla -

The Holocaust Bar is too High
The Holocaust Bar Is too High!
Econe’s docking manoeuvre has been halted for the long term

by Eberhard Heller
translated by Elisabeth Meurer

As if there had not been enough bad news being dished out daily to us by the press and media since the middle of last year—banks going bankrupt, a recession, economic slumps, and unemployment showing its effects even within families—since the end of January this year, we have been overrun by a new media campaign which almost threw the other horrible news into the background and which was to go on for weeks:

“Pope Rehabilitates Denier of Holocaust”.1)

These attacks found their temporary height reached in the sensitive territory of Church diplomacy, in the criticism of Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel towards Benedict XVI. 2)

What caused it all? On January 24, 2009, the Vatican published a decree signed on 21 January, 2009 by Card. Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for the Bishops. This decree lifted the excommunication of the four bishops of Econe, which had taken place in 1988, stating: “On the basis of the power expressly given to me by the Holy Father Benedict XVI, by this decree I abolish the punishment of excommunication latae sententiae for the bishops Bernard Fellay, Bernard Tissier de Mallerais, Richard Williamson and Alfonso de Gallareta, which had been declared by this congregation on 1 July 1988. I declare the decree then issued to be juridically ineffective from today’s date.”  In a letter to Cardinal Hoyos of  December 12, 2008, Bishop Fellay had asked for the lifting of the excommunication which had been imposed on the bishops because of the illicit consecration of bishops on the 30 June, 1988.

Only a few days before, on 21 January 2009, i. e., also the day on which the decree was signed, an interview was broadcast on the Swedish television which Bishop Williamson had given to the TV-reporter of Stockholm, Ali Fegan, on 01.11.2008 in Zaitzkofen/Lower Bavaria 3) , where he had stated among others the following about the Nazi crimes against the Jews: “I think for example that people (...) drawing conclusions against what is nowadays mostly believed about the ‘Holocaust’, the revisionists, as they are called, I think the most serious among them conclude that between 200,000 and 300,000 Jews had died in Nazi concentration camps, but not one through gasing in a gas chamber.” 4)

Just two days before, on 19.01.09, “Der Spiegel” had published parts of Williamson’s interview: “Williamson had travelled to Zaitzkofen; (...) there he wanted to ordain the Swedish convert Sten Sandmark a new ‘Pius’ deacon. As the conversion of the latter is thought of as a scandal far in the North, the TV-reporter from Stockholm, Ali Fegan, was also there. After the ordination, they sat together in front of the film camera for an interview. The conversation turned towards the crimes of the Nazis. In the film you see Williamson shortly stop speaking and then he says that he does not believe that six million Jews were gased in the gas chambers. To the surprised counter question: “So there were no gas chambers?” the bishop gives the answer: “I believe there were no gas chambers, yes.”

The timing was perfect: Five and three days, respectively, before the decree of removal of excommunication was published, Williamson’s remarks already appeared in the press and on TV. From the fact that the decree was signed at the same time as the publication of Williamson’s interview (21.01.09) one could construct a ‘post hoc’. Therefore it is insinuated that Ratzinger or his consultants at the Curia should have known what personal views Williamson had issued. Therefore: “Pope Rehabilitates Denier of Holocaust”, even if the Vatican emphasizes that Benedict XVI had not known anything about Williamson’s remarks. (This media campaign is said to have been set up and stage-managed by the French reporter Caroline Fourest, president of a community of homosexuals, and Fiammetta Venner, who both were said to have been very well informed about the upcoming rehabilitation). Therefore, the following is clear to the Vatican: Benedict XVI became a victim of a plot with the declared purpose of undermining his authority! And this has been a success! Since then, Benedict XVI has been openly criticized. He is not only showered with scoldings from the media, but bishops and theologians are joining the chorus of the ‘consternated’, the registry offices in Germany are speaking of more and more people leaving the Church. Ordering Williamson to withdraw was of no use either. He certainly apologized, but he did not execute the order himself. 5)

Shortly, the following can be reported about Williamson: He was relieved of his function as a director of the priests’ seminary in La Reja, Argentina, by the superiors of Econe. 6) Shortly after, he was expelled from Argentina, supposedly because of false statements which he is said to have made when entering the country in 2003 and which are said to be documented in his documents of residence in Argentina, as there is no law saying that denying the Holocaust is a crime (SZ of 21./22.02.09). He is currently staying in England, where Williamson’s remarks are not punishable either. This is why he does not have to face being handed over to Germany or France (Aachener Zeitung of 26.02.09).

To judge the importance of the reproach against Ratzinger of having favored Williamson, who is called a denier of the Holocaust, we have to clarify first what relevance Williamson’s remarks have, especially in a legal point of view and especially in Germany. On the other hand, one should realize with increasing astonishment how the denial of the Holocaust is not only almost made into a dogma but into the dogma per se which has received not only a canonical status from the modernists but has even been adopted by the Econists, as it seems. Compared to the denial of this new ‘dogma’, all other heretical and apostate remarks are reduced to marginal issues. It is a precedent which will stay relevant for the future – beyond present events – hyper-inflated by an hysterical rush and overreaction.

Finally let us also take a look at the dilemma which the relations between Rome and Econe and vice versa are in and will probably stay as well.

Denying the Holocaust is considered as incitement of the people in Germany and is punished (up to five years of prison, § 130 StGB). 7) By this legal fixation even on “playing down” – and by this can also be meant “lowering the amount of victims” (BGH 2. Strafsenat, Az 2 StR 365/04), not only the liberty of opinion could possibly be affected – as said the former minister of justice Leuthauser-Schnarrenberg – but a stop could also be put to any further historical research. Imagine that Lehmann’s idea of Luther being a teacher of the Church were to become law and the denial of which would be punishable with imprisonment. To my opinion, even the suspicion of your having a different opinion would force you to silence and restrain you in expressing the truth, rather than being grist to the mill stone.  For example, the former judge at the “Bundesverfassungsgericht”, Wolfgang Hoffmann-Riem, thinks the punishability of denying the Holocaust to be wrong. During an event at the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung, Hoffmann-Riem had stated: “If I were a legislator, I would not make the denial of the Holocaust punishable by law” (Tagesspiegel of 11.07.2008 under www.tagesspiegel.de/politik/Holocaust-Leugnung;art771,2569679). To clarify it: As a co-editor of the Reinhold correspondence, I had to research several times at the Geheimes Haus-, Hof- und Staatsarchiv of Vienna. I had access to all documents, even to unmasking ones about the Freemasons, except for the documents concerning the time from 1939 to 1945.

Besides, there are Jewish authors, who you per definitionem cannot accuse of anti-Semitism, but warn against the actions of Zionist associations (I call associations or institutions Zionist if they misuse the Jewish religion for political purposes) using the extermination of large amounts of Jews by the Nazis ideologized as a Holocaust. In his book „Die Holocaust-Industrie“ (The Holocaust Industry; Munich-Zurich, 2001), Norman G. Finkelstein 8) proves that the Jewish suffering is systematically exploited – morally and financially: “This book”, he writes in the introduction, “is an anatomy of the Holocaust industry and at the same time an accusation against it. On the following pages, I will explain that the HOLOCAUST is (...) a description of the extermination of large amounts of Jews by the Nazis characterized by ideology. (...) The HOLOCAUST is not an arbitrarily compiled construct but rather one that is logical in itself. Its central dogmas support important political class interests. Indeed, the HOLOCAUST has shown to be an indispensable ideological weapon.” (ibid., p. 9) “A conclusive though less flattering explanation says that before June 1967, the Jewish elites of America remembered the execution of large amounts of Jews by the Nazis only when it was politically useful. Israel, their new protector, had capitalized on the extermination of the Jews during the trial of Eichmann. In view of its being proved useful, the organized Jews of America made use of the extermination of large amounts of Jews by the Nazis after the war of June. Once ideologically transformed, THE HOLOCAUST (...) showed to be the perfect weapon for dismissing any criticism against Israel – in fact exactly in the way I will show by the following. However, what deserves being emphasized here is the fact that, for the Jewish elites of America, THE HOLOCAUST had the same function as it had for Israel: It was another inestimable chip in a game for power with high stakes. The expressed worry about the memory of the Holocaust was as feigned as the worry about Israel’s fate (ibid., p. 38).

“This reference to the Holocaust”, the renowned Israeli author Boas Evron notes, is actually “an official propagandistic indoctrination, incessantly creating catchwords as well as a wrong view of the world and in fact by no means aiming at understanding the past but at manipulating the present.” The Holocaust Boy itself is not useful to any special political program. Refusing Israel’s policy can be justified by it as well as supporting it. Distorted by an ideological way of looking at it, however, “the memory of the extermination by the Nazis”—Evron’s exact words—could be used as “a powerful tool in the hands of Israel’s leaders and the Jews in other countries”. The extermination of large amounts of Jews by the Nazis was changed into THE HOLOCAUST. Two central dogmas form the foundation of the construction of THE HOLOCAUST:

(1)    THE HOLOCAUST represents an absolutely singular event in history;
(2)    THE HOLOCAUST represents the summit of an irrational, eternal hatred of the non-Jews against the Jews.” (ibid., p. 49 f)

"There’s only a stonethrow between the claim that the Holocaust is singular and the claim that the Holocaust cannot be understood rationally. If there is no historical event comparable to the Holocaust, then it must be above history. As a result, it cannot be grasped by history. Indeed, THE HOLOCAUST is singular, because it is inexplicable, and it is inexplicable, because it is singular. Novick has called this mystification ‘the canonization of the Holocaust’, and Elie Wiesel is its most experienced advocate. As Novick rightly notes: For Wiesel, THE HOLOCAUST really is a religion of ‘mystery’. So Wiesel starts off, that THE HOLOCAUST ‘leads into darkness’, ‘refuses answers’, ‘lies outside if not beyond history’, ‘resists knowledge as well as description’, ‘cannot be explained or pictured’, that it ‘can never be captured or conveyed’, that it is ‘a destruction of history’ and marks a ‘change to a cosmic extent’. Only the surviving priest (i. e. only Wiesel) is able to guess its mystery. But still: As Wiesel admits, the mystery of THE HOLOCAUST ‘cannot be conveyed’; ‘we cannot even talk about it’. As a result, in his speeches for the standard royalty of 25,000 Dollars (plus sedan with chauffeur), Wiesel expresses that the ‘secret’ of Auschwitz is ‘truth in silence’. In this view, a rational understanding of THE HOLOCAUST amounts to denying it. For a rational approach denies the singularity and the mystery of THE HOLOCAUST. And whoever compares this HOLOCAUST to the sufferings of other people, for Wiesel commits ‘absolute betrayal of Jewish history’”. (ibid., p. 53 f.) 9)

In Germany, the cast of “political correctness” has adopted the ideologized term of HOLOCAUST coined by Jewish elites in America. It has a definite influence not only in politics but also on school education as well as in Church institutions. How much sensitivity there is on the part of Jewish organizations with regards to comparisons with Nazi crimes becomes not only evident in view of the Williamson affair, but also recently with regard to statement of Mixa, the “bishop” of Augsburg. In a speech given on Ash Wednesday in Dinkelsbühl, the latter had compared the murder of the Jews to the crime of abortion. “The Holocaust is a terrible crime”, Mixa said, but crimes against life are also committed today. Thus the number of the six million killed Jews has in the meantime been exceeded by the number of abortions.” (SZ of 28.02.09) Of course Mixa was promptly criticized by the allergized CSU Mayor, (whose remarks did not even describe exactly the facts). Why? because such a comparison is inconsistent with political correctness and all the repetitious defacto self-accusations. Even „Friar Barnabas“ alias Michael Lerchenberg, the preacher of repentance on the Nockerberg in Munich, in a previous interview to the SZ of 07./08.03.09 admitted to having erased the adjective „Jewish“ in a sentence in order not to „get approval from the wrong side”. 10)

Now insinuating that Ratzinger has sympathies to anti-semitic views is simply wrong, and each of those involved knows it. It only reminds me of the remarks he had made during a visit to the synagogue of Cologne on 19.08.2005: „By this visit, I would like to take up the event of 17 November 1980, when my dear predecessor, Pope John Paul II, met the Zentralrat der Juden in Deutschland (Central Council of Jews in Germany) and the conference of rabbines. At this occasion, too, I would like to assure that I intend to continue with all my strength the way of improving the relations and the friendship with the Jewish people, in which Pope John Paul II has made decisive steps. (...) This year as well – we have heard it – it is forty years that the Second Vatican Council promulgated the declaration Nostra Aetate and thus opened new prospects in the relations between Jews and Christians marked by dialogue and partnership. In its fourth chapter, this declaration recalls our common roots and the extremely rich spiritual heritage Jews and Christians share. The Jews as well as the Christians recognize Abraham as their father in faith (see Gal 3,7; Romans 4, 11 f.) and refer to the teachings of Moses and the prophets“. (http://www.papstbenediktxvi.ch/index.php?m=1&s=4)

However, the club of anti-semitism and the functionaries swinging it not only have instrumentalize the murder of the Jews, but they mock the victims in the most perfidious way all in the service of the Zionists. But if the German bishops draw this card, too, it only shows—along with their clerical hypocrisy—their strong resentment against Ratzinger and their desire to undermine his authority: I mention the rejection of his efforts to reinsert the Fraternity of Priests of St. Pius X and its followers into the “Church association” which is still recognized as the Catholic Church by that same Fraternity.

How could one otherwise explain that Williamson’s remarks concerning the Nazi crimes would get an importance of that kind in the view of theology, that Zollitsch, the president of the German Conference of Bishops, when opening it spring conference in Hamburg, can say: Unless Williamson withdraws the denial, then he should be excommunicated again? For Williamson does not generally deny the Nazi crimes, but relativates them – he was conscious that he could be prosecuted in Germany because of his remarks, i. e.: Here a remark concerning a historical event is equated to the denial of a dogma or the violation of the unity of the Church – a schism; the only occurrences for which ecclesiastical punishments are provided. One could dismiss his remarks as theological nonsense by which he only shows himself to be ignorant in this field. But, in fact, he [Zollitsch] gives a line of approach which is reinforced even more by Lehmann, his predecessor and trained dogmatist: “With people like Williamson, without real repentance, the excommunication should come into force again” (SZ of 28.02./01.03.09), a conception which has in the meantime been adopted in part by the Conference of Bishops, too. 11)

So, here it is not a matter of overrating a behaviour which can be stopped through authority and discipline, as being  harmful to the Church, but a matter of adapting an idea of the ‘Church’ which raises the Holocaust to a religion. Thorsten Hinz summarizes this semantic reversal in a most precise way: “The abandoned altars, Ernst Jünger writes, will be monopolized by demons. (...) The most powerful demon of the present is the secular religion where Auschwitz takes the place of God, marks a Messianic change of times and, as a ‘second Golgotha’, eclipses the first one, as historians and theologians, Jewish as well as Christian, openly declare. The Holocaust is set above the rules of science, stripped of its concreteness and context. By means of ceremonies, rituals, penal laws and sacral language it is lifted to the level of a mystery requiring the priest as a go-between. Behind all this is the most extensive and strongest political and ideological decisionism since the Russian October Revolution. The religion of the Holocaust sets itself in motion by far more cleverly than the Marxist-Leninist state church. Instead of confronting itself with the Christian religion, the latter is adapted and transformed. Daniel J. Goldhagen’s book “The Catholic Church and the Holocaust” which came out in 2002 is of no scientific value, but its political program stays intact. To expiate their guilt of the Holocaust, Goldhagen required from the Catholic Church: the dissolution of the Vatican, the revision of the Bible under the supervision of an oecumenical world assembly, the “democratization” of the Church, the dropping of the dogma of infallibility, pluralism of faith as well as memorials for Jewish victims of the Church, political support for Israel, a campaign against anti-Semitism among the faithful, which goes “in the centre of its mission”, etc. Thus the Catholic Church would be under the supremacy of a Holy Office of Holocaust and would become a subdivision of the secular religion – similar to the Protestant church which has degenerated into a mix of OXFAM-shop, Aktion Sühnezeichen and “Glockenläuten gegen Rechts” (bells against the right wing).“ (JUNGE FREIHEIT Verlag GmbH & Co., www.jungefreiheit.de 08/09, 13 February 2009). Although there is still some resistence to be found in the Vatican against this semantically developed changing of the Church’s function which cunningly juggles with distorted Christian values and terms, we find that the members of the so-called German Conference of Bishops have for a long time become the accomplices in fulfilling these demands of Goldhagen.

To characterize Ratzinger’s position concerning the unity of the Church and with it the ecumenical process, I will go back to what I said shortly after his election: “Ratzinger was and is integral in this process of the so-called ecumenism and is actively participating in carrying it out: as a theologian of the Council, as a professor, as a bishop of Munich, as a prefect of the Congregation of Faith ... and now as Benedict XVI who in this function call the ‘fundamental matter of ecumenism’ (speech given to the cardinals on 20 April, i. e. one day after his election!), one of his most important tasks. In contrast to many other ecumenists, however, Ratzinger wants these ecumenical efforts to take place as an approximative process in clear, controllable and controlled steps. As he emphasizes in interviews, he would like the unity he is striving for not to be reduced to the smallest common denominator, i. e. based on minimal unanimity in doctrine, but a community of (partial) churches. In this sense he is talking of “polyphony”. So Ratzinger will try to further develop the ecumenical movement as a process in the sense of the “polyphony” he is talking of, i. e., he will make efforts to strive for an ecclesiastical unity, where the so-called partial churches can maintain their autonomy with regards to their theological conceptions and independence in liturgical matters. In contrast to Küng who contests Ratzinger’s role as one of the decisive theologians of the Council and would like to attribute it to himself and who is pleased about the violation of Church dogmas as much as about broken porcelain, Ratzinger uses such breaks much more carefully and hides it in formulas expressing a “encompassing consensus”, the magic word which was used to interpret the “Common Declaration about the Doctrine of Justification” signed on 31 October 1999. They wanted to do away with old condemnations of doctrines which, in the sense of the polyphony, would only have been disturbing. (EINSICHT 35/4 of June 2005, p. 140 f.)

Ratzinger is and remains involved in the ecumenical break-up of the conciliar “church” in order to obtain the union in the polyphony he is aiming to accomplish. The Econists, who are already talked about as a “different church” belonging to the Middle Ages by many adherents of the Council, is certainly still considered by Ratzinger to be resistant Catholics tending to schism. But nevertheless they are Roman Catholics and whose integral membership to the conciliar “church” ruled by him he wants to regain. In this way we should also see the lifting of the excommunication of the Econe bishops, an unilateral act of grace so to speak, an “act of mercy”, hoping that Econe would understand this sign in the way he understands it. In his decree of abolition, Card. Re had expressed it this way: “This gift of peace, at the end of the celebrations of Christmas, also aims to be a sign for the promotion of unity in charity of the universal Church, and with this means, come to remove the scandal of division.  It is desired that this step be followed by the solicitous fulfillment of full communion with the Church of the Society of St. Pius X, thereby witnessing to authentic fidelity and a true recognition of the magisterium and the authority of the Pope, with the proof of visible unity.”

This lack of preconditions is confirmed by Fellay: “We have asked several times for the permission to celebrate the Old Mass and for the lifting of the excommunications. But what has happened now is not the fruit of negotiations or an agreement. This is a free and unilateral act, by which Rome shows us its benevolence.” (`Mitteilungsblatt´ of March 2009) It means also: Ratzinger had not clarified if his calculation would work out, if the Fraternity Priests of St. Pius X would recognize the decisions of the Second Vatican Council and in which way. Thus this withdrawal of the excommunication represents – for the true adherents of the Council – a pretty isolated action without clarification of the further consequences. In this decision, Ratzinger’s doubt about the continuation of the conciliar process played a role. This is what one of his former students, the theologian, philosopher and biologist Ulrich Lüke, assumes (see AACHENER ZEITUNG of 07.02.09). Ratzinger’s criticism of the new liturgy is well-known.

But such gestures of ‘good will’ are not accepted by the so-called German ‘bishops’ and their conference forum. By the decree of the Motu Proprio “Summorum Pontificum” issued in July 2007, which allows the Holy Mass to be said according to the form of 1962 (the so-called “Tridentine Mass”) as an extraordinary form of the Catholic rite of Mass on a broad basis, Benedict XVI had already complied very much with the issues of the Fraternity Priests of St. Pius X and the faithful united to them by his own initiative. When they were admitted again, Lehmann, at that time president of the conference, to my opinion was right when raising the very instructive and elucidating argument that the two forms of the Mass stand for two different churches, the pre-conciliar and the post-conciliar one. This argument of two churches was taken up by the new president Zollitsch when he appeared on TV with Mrs. Illner on 05.02.09 and applied it again to the positions of Rome and Econe. With regards to Ratzinger’s efforts of reunification with the Fraternity of St. Pius X, the obstacles the Econists still have to surmount to be united with Rome are thus listed by the modernist bishops and theologians. One even gets the impression that the Williamson case is presented to them at the right moment to be used as another opportunity of manifesting their criticism of Ratzinger’s efforts of reunification and to be used as another bar. For their criticism of Benedict XVI goes far beyond the present dispute. The declaration,  “Dominus Iesus” of 2000 by Ratzinger, where the `Catholic Church´ was to play a special role with regards to the Lutherian `churches´ again within the ecumenical movement, was already thought of as a disruptive factor in the ecumenical movement by the ecumenists like Kaspar.

Among the other stakes that they knocked in for the Pius Fraternity, which they regard as a group of religious „crustacea“, are:

-    the complete recognition of the decisions of Vatican II, which will no longer be discussed;
-    the change of their anti-Jewish (not: antisemitic!) attitude, although the Econists are always insinuated to have an anti-semitic one. Schmidberger with his wrong conception of today’s Jews being guilty of the death of Christ is also responsible for this insinuation. 12) This taking up of a pro-Jewish line would also mean giving up their own Christian identity in order to thus grant the Jews a parallel way to salvation of their own as the conciliarists do; 13)
-    giving up any priestly and episcopal activity of their own. For the suspension imposed by Paul VI in 1975 has nothing to do with the lifting of the excommunication. So the rehabilitated bishops now have to sibmit to the former.

Just this last point is called upon by many conciliar bishops. To prelate Camillo Perl’s opinion, the Econists “have even been degraded in a certain respect” by lifting the excommunication, “namely, to a status where they have no function as bishops any more.” (DIE WELT of 05.02.09) Card. Meisner clarifies that the Econists represent a schismatic group, as long as they reject the doctrinal statements of Vatican II. (DIE WELT of 04.02.09). Indeed, the ecclesiastic and legal situation between Econe and Rome is completely confused, none of the two parts follows a well thought-out concept.

Besides, at least in France, where it is said to have 100,000 adherents alone, the Fraternity of Priests is said to be partly in the tradition of the Action Française which was created after the Dreyfus affair around 1900 and followed up nationalist tendencies but was then forbidden by Pius X in 1914. Lehmann sees the Pius Fraternity “not above all as a theologically motivated movement.” (Gernot Facius in DIE WELT of 02.03.09) Thus Lehmann has an attitude which to a slightly different respect is also that of EINSICHT: Above all, Econe is caring about its own internal (ecclesiastic) policy, not about the benefit of the entire Church.

There is no doubt that Benedict‘s XVI loss of standing, which he has suffered by the Williamson case, will have an effect on the further negotiations with Econe – should there still be any. For in the meantime the German Conference of Bishops has already excluded, for its part, any discussion with the Pius Fraternity about the decisions of Vatican II.

There has been no change in our view of the position and action of Econe. The behavior of the Fraternity of Priests St. Pius X is still contradictory; that is why it bears the name of St. Pius X without good reason. For on the one hand it pretends to respect the authority of Benedict XVI and recognizes him as a Pope, but on the other hand the Fraternity goes on rejecting the Vatican II decisions that are also supported by him.

The Fraternity would lose its identity completely as well if it recognized Vatican II. It rejects the accepted authority even there – and this is remarked with good reason by the ‘bishop’ of Regensburg, Müller – where it permanently ignores the punishment of suspension which imposes passivity on it.14) Even if the Fraternity of Priests, together with their founder Mgr. Lefebvre, once held the opinion that the manoeuvre to hitch up to the apostasized Rome could succeed, to Rome—which in the meantime feels obliged to a kind of „Holocaust religion“ and which emphatically rejects the idea of leading the Jews to convert to Christianity and to be baptized as anti-semitic—the present superiors should see that they are no longer concurring – no one wants to do anything with them any more. It was of no use either that the superior, Fellay, made a pilgrimage to Rome on 16.01.09, “in order to hand over the spiritual bouquet with more than 1,700,000 rosaries” (Schmidberger in the “Mitteilungsblatt” of March 2009) – a disgusting racking up of religious performance with prayers. At the same time other faithful in Paris were also going to the barricades and reproaching Econe for betrayal. On 22.02.09, they handed out leaflets which read: “No incorporation – (...) stay faithful to the true faith“ [`Pfarrbrief´ (letter to the parishioners) no. 10 of 02.03.09 by Rev. Paul Schoonbroodt).

Now Benedict XVI wrote a “letter (...) to the bishops of the Catholic Church” on 10.03.09 in order to declare his position regarding his lifting the excommunication of the four Econe bishops: "Another mistake, which I deeply regret, is the fact that the extent and limits of the provision of 21 January 2009 were not clearly and adequately explained at the moment of its publication. The excommunication affects individuals, not institutions. An episcopal ordination lacking a pontifical mandate raises the danger of a schism, since it jeopardizes the unity of the College of Bishops with the Pope. Consequently the Church must react by employing her most severe punishment excommunication with the aim of calling those thus punished to repent and to return to unity. Twenty years after the ordinations, this goal has sadly not yet been attained. The remission of the excommunication has the same aim as that of the punishment: namely, to invite the four Bishops once more to return. This gesture was possible once the interested parties had expressed their recognition in principle of the Pope and his authority as Pastor, albeit with some reservations in the area of obedience to his doctrinal authority and to the authority of the Council. Here I return to the distinction between individuals and institutions. The remission of the excommunication was a measure taken in the field of ecclesiastical discipline: the individuals were freed from the burden of conscience constituted by the most serious of ecclesiastical penalties. This disciplinary level needs to be distinguished from the doctrinal level. The fact that the Society of Saint Pius X does not possess a canonical status in the Church is not, in the end, based on disciplinary but on doctrinal reasons. As long as the Society does not have a canonical status in the Church, its ministers do not exercise legitimate ministries in the Church. There needs to be a distinction, then, between the disciplinary level, which deals with individuals as such, and the doctrinal level, at which ministry and institution are involved (…) until the doctrinal questions are clarified, the Society has no canonical status in the Church, and its ministers even though they have been freed of the ecclesiastical penalty do not legitimately exercise any ministry in the Church. In light of this situation, it is my intention henceforth to join the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei' the body which has been competent since 1988 for those communities and persons who, coming from the Society of Saint Pius X or from similar groups, wish to return to full communion with the Pope to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. This will make it clear that the problems now to be addressed are essentially doctrinal in nature and concern primarily the acceptance of the Second Vatican Council and the post-conciliar magisterium of the Popes (…) The Church's teaching authority cannot be frozen in the year 1962 this must be quite clear to the Society. But some of those who put themselves forward as great defenders of the Council also need to be reminded that Vatican II embraces the entire doctrinal history of the Church. Anyone who wishes to be obedient to the Council has to accept the faith professed over the centuries, and cannot sever the roots from which the tree draws its life.

In the meantime, I am more and more suspecting Econe of only stage-managing these manoeuvres of hitching up in order to lead their clients to believe that they belong to the true Church, which has for a long time given up its existence ... and the superiors know this. Vatican II has basically become a fixed reality. Any other conceptions of Christian religion than those fed by it no longer exist. It is not an issue one could still discuss about in an aesthetic way like in a literary cabinet.

Benedict XVI’s “act of mercy“ has shattered; his “polyphony” was not increased by Econe’s “tune”. Econe’s hitching attempt remains unsuccessful because the Holocaust bar is by far too high.
1) “Süddeutsche Zeitung” of 23.01.09: “In spite of Jewish protest, Pope Benedict XVI has rehabilitated a former bishop who denies the Holocaust. As the Vatican informed on Saturday, the Pope with a decree lifted the excommunication of four Catholic bishops who had been consecrated without the acceptance of the Vatican, dating from the year 1988. Among them is also the Briton Richard Williamson who repeatedly denied the full extent of the genocide of the Jews during National Socialism. So he had recently said the following on the Swedish television on Wednesday: I believe there were no gas chambers. “Furthermore, he claimed that not six million Jews had been killed in the German concentration camps, but only up to 300,000.” – DIE WELT had the following headline in its issue of 29.01.09: “Benedict XVI approached opponent of Council and denier of Holocaust”, writing: “Does the lifting of the excommunication of four bishops of the traditionalist Fraternity   Priests of Pius X, among whom is also the denier of the Holocaust, Richard Williamson, really mean a `point of change in Church history´, as the Catholic professors of theology at the University of Tübingen think? Pope Benedict XVI has ‘disappointed the world’, so the summary of Hans Küng who had once taken the professor Ratzinger to Tübingen. And the bishop of Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Gebhard Fürst, thinks that foundations of faith are in danger.”
2) Chancellor criticizes Pope (...) In a sharp manner until now unprecedented, Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel criticized Pope Benedict XVI in the debate about the question how to deal with the Holocaust and required a clarification from the head of the Catholic Church. Merkel said in Berlin that the Pope had to declare “very clearly” that there must not be any denial of the Holocaust. At the same time, she appealed to the Pope to make inequivocably clear that “there should be positive dealings with the Jews altogether.” (SZ of 03.02.2009) It seems reasonable to assume that Merkel, who was at last also joined by Federal President Köhler, got onto the “train” from Israel which had steamed off with big threats against the Vatican: “Due to the rehabilitation of the bishop and denier of the Holocaust, Richard Williamson, Pope Benedict XVI is getting under more and more pressure. The Israeli Minister of Religious Matters, Jizchak Cohen, threatened to stop the diplomatic relationships between Israel and the Vatican. (SZ of 31.01.2009) Thorsten Hinz expresses it like this: „Federal Chancellor Merkel’s attack on the Pope shows that the German elites of function see themselves as mouthpieces and tools of Holocaust decisionism. They elevate themselves by leaving the German people the position of the incessantly morally guilty who cannot expect any salvation or forgiveness. However, by every act of penitence it is forced to make, it is pushed even deeper into feelings of guilt. These require new acts of penitence and thus start off a spiral of self-destruction. The only way out is hypocrisy. According to all experience, the majority are willing to it if they can satisfy their desires elsewhere in a mass-democratic way instead.“ (JUNGE FREIHEIT of 13 February 2009) So it was astonishing that Merkel was rather strictly brought back into line from within her own party because of her scolding the Pope: “You cannot treat the Pope like Günther Öttinger”, Willy Wimmer said. (Aachener Zeitung of 06.02.09)
3) Williamson had come to Zaitzkofen to ordain the former parish priest of the Lutheran state church, Sten Sandmark (60), a subdeacon. After his application to the `Catholic´ bishop of Stockholm for conversion and admission to the Catholic Church, which he thought to be still existing, had been rejected – he was told to stay formally Lutheran and become Catholic only in his heart, he had joined Econe in 2005 and had renounced the Lutheran faith there in July 2006. (see http://www.kreuz.net/article.3681.html of 11 August 2006, as well as http://www.priesterseminar-herz-jesu.de/html/aktuell/)
4) See the interview in the appendix: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10_H_Apgqdg)
5) See appendix
6)The General Superior Fellay as well as the District Superior Schmidberger formally dissociated themselves from Williamson’s remarks. In the „Mitteilungsblatt“ No. 362 of March 2009, Fellay writes on 27.01.09: „The mission of the Fraternity of Priests is the diffusion and re-establishment of the authentic Catholic doctrine as it is laid down in the dogmas. We are known, accepted and esteemed worldwide for doing so. To our great worry, we see how the transgression of this mission by our member does great harm to our religious mission. We apologize to the Holy Father and to all people of good will for the trouble this has caused. Here it must be clear that these remarks represent in no way the attitude of our community. Therefore I have forbidden to bishop Williamson any public statement on political or historical issues until further notice“. And the same day, Schmidberger adds: „As a District Superior of the Fraternity of Priests St. Pius X in Germany, I am, together with my fellow brothers, shattered by the remarks of bishop Williamson here in this country. The playing-down of the murder of the Jews and the atrocities the Nazi regime committed is inacceptable for us“.
7) Incitement of the people § 130 StGB: „Whoever approves, denies or plays down an act of the kind mentioned in § 6 section 1 Völkerstrafgesetzbuch committed under the power of National Socialism in a way which may disturb the public peace, publicly or in an assembly, will be imposed up to five years‘ imprisonment“. (Fischer: StGB, ed. 56, 2009) – „The fact of approval, denial or playing down of the genocide of the Jewish population under the power of National Socialism had been added to the regulation of § 130 StGB with the law of combating crime of 28 October 1994. By doing so, legislature wanted to contribute to the prevention of right-wing extremist propaganda. Owing to its dangerous effects on the political climate, the practical application of § 130 StGB was to be made easier and the generally preventing effect of the penal regulation of the incitement of the people was to be increased, namely, with regards to the defamation and discrimination of Jewish fellow citizens“. (quoted from the verdict of BGH1, criminal division, Az 1StR 502/99) – In the context of the reported total number of 6 million Jews murdered by the Nazi regime, the fact that the recent results of Fritjof Meyer concerning the vitctims of Auschwitz – who he estimated at 433,000 – diverging to the 1 million presumed until now – have not been taken into consideration in the usual reports. Meyer, chief editor of the SPIEGEL, had proved by new archive findings that the amount of victims of Auschwitz needed to be corrected and published his results in OST-EUROPA, the magazine of the Gesellschaft für Osteuropa No. 5 of May 2002. For this publication, legal proceedings were instituted against him by Mr. Günther Deckert and Mr. Horst Mahler (who have in the meantime been imprisoned for incitement of the people – together with the president of this association, prof. Rita Süssmuth, the manager Dr. Heike Dörrenbächer and the editor Dr. Manfred Sapper). The prosecuting attorney’s office of Stuttgart which has jurisdiction made the following decision on 28.05.03 (Az: 4 Js 75185/02): “There is no punishable conduct of the accused (...) In his essay, the accused rather defines his viewpoint clearly opposite to any effort whatsoever to deny the Holocaust and its terror (...) by expressly pointing out, at the end of his expositions, that the result of his research ‘does not relativate but verify the barbarity’.” (Bock, prosecuting attorney)
8) Finkelstein’s parents, Maryla Husyt and Zacharias Finkelstein originally came from Poland and were prosecuted and interned as Jews during the Third Reich. They survived the Warsaw Ghetto, the concentration camp of Majdanek (his mother) and the concentration camp of Auschwitz (his father) and emigrated to the USA after the Second World War.
9) The incomparability, even extra-historicality of the mass murder of the Jews does not arise from the event itself, but is above all the product of the exploiting industry which has developped afterwards. The industry of the Holocaust has always been bankrupt. We only have to say this openly. The time of getting it out of business is long overdue. The noblest gesture towards those who have been killed consists in maintaining their memory, learning from their suffering and finally letting them rest in peace“. (Finkelstein, ibid.; p. 153)
10) To plumb the political scale of the adaptation of this Holocaust ideology, one just needs to look at the helplessness of German policy which was unable to condemn the Israelis’ devastating bomb attacks during the recent war against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip as crimes.
11) So it says in a „word of Cardinal Lehmann concerning the lifting of the excommunication of the Pius Fraternity: (...) From the beginning, I have taken the Pope’s part. Before criticizing, you need to try to understand something. Given the short possibilities of making a statement before all on television, specially if a statement is furthermore used in a very abridged and only selective way, this is more difficult than most people think. But I keep to my criticism that there have indeed been incomprehensible goofs in internal and external communication of the Vatican. (...) Since at least 35 years I have known the development concerning the Fraternities of St. Pius and St. Peter. I have also had several discussions with the former and the present Pope before. (...) I appreciate very much that John Paul II as well as Benedict XVI tried everything to make people, who have difficulties with the Second Vatican Council as well as with the history of its development during the past 50 years, stay in the Church or to make it possible for them to return to it. The unity is a precious gift of the Church and a primary worry of the Pope and the bishops. However, one thing has to be clear: a full and clear yes to the entire Second Vatican Council (of course, criticism of single statements is possible). I am deeply convinced that in today’s Church, there is no space left for any anti-semitism or even a denial of the Holocaust, let alone for an office bearer“. („Pfarrbrief der kath. Pfarrgemeinden Groß- und Kleinzimmern“ of 04.03.09)
12) „The spearhead of Catholic traditionalists is not only pious, but it is also partly anti-semitic. This also causes the change by approach to be a problem for the German Conference of Bishops and at the same time for the German Pope himself who wants to start his first trip to Israel in May in order to make the reconciliation between Christians and Jews progress. The anti-semitism of leading Pius brothers was shown to the Pope’s representatives in Germany shortly before Christmas, when the District Superior Schmidberger sent a circular to all the 27 bishops where it says at one place: ‘Nowadays Jews ... are also guilty of deicide, unless they dissociate themselves from the guilt of their ancestors by confessing that Christ is God and by being baptized.’” (DER SPIEGEL no. 4/2009 of 19.01.2009, page 32, author: Peter Wensierski) Such phrases are rejected with justification because they are theologically false, since Ezechiel says: “Only he who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father and the father shall not bear the guilt of the son. The justice of the just come upon himself and the godlessness of the godless come upon him”. (Ez. 18, 20)
13) But if you granted the Jews a way to salvation of their own, equal to the way shown in the New Testament, this would mean ignoring Christ’s order to do missionary work and refraining from a conversion of the Jews. And not only that! The Son of God would have become a man in vain, His passion and resurrection would also have been in vain. A Church which implicitly supports this could also preach a conversion to Judaism and dismantle itself. The evangelist Matthew could have saved himself the trouble of explaining to the Jews that Christ is the Messiah predicted in the Old Testament.
14) As a bishop responsible for the diocese of Regensburg, where the Econe seminary of Zaitzkofen is situated, Müller has already forbidden the ordinations planned for June this year. He argues: If it matters to Econe to be reintegrated into the (conciliar) ‘church’, it should also accept the suspension of all its functions.
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