Interview with Bishop Guérard des Lauriers o.p. on the Thesis of Cassiciacum

An Extract from Sodalitium No. 13

Curriculum Vitae

Born in 1898 near Paris, Michel Guérard des Lauriers attended lay teaching schools. He entered the École normale supérieure (founded at the same time as the one in Pisa) in 1921, and passed the competitive math examinations in 1924.

He studied for two years in Rome with Professor T. Levi-Civita, and prepared his thesis which he would defend at the Sorbonne under the presidency of Professor Elie Cartan.

In 1925, he entered the Order of Preachers, made his profession in 1930, and was ordained to the priesthood in 1931. A Professor at the Dominican University of Le Saulchoir from 1933, he also taught at the Pontifical Lateran University from 1961. This Roman stay was the occasion for Father Guérard des Lauriers to elaborate the doctrinal part and collaborate on the original publication (due to Cristina Guerrini) of the letter entitled: “Brief Critical Examination of the Novus ‘ordo missae’ ”, a letter addressed to Paul VI on July 5, 1969 (the feast of Corpus Christi), by Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci. This step earned Father Guérard des Laurier a discharge from the Lateran in June 1970, along with the rector, Monsignor Piolanti, and fifteen other professors all judged undesirable. From that time on, Father Guérard des Laurier lived “extra conventum, cum permissu superiorum” (outside of the monastery with the permission of the superiors).

Father Guérard des Lauriers is the author of many theology works, as well as numerous articles about philosophy of science, critique of knowledge, spiritual theology. He is a member of the Pontifical Academy of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

In 1978, (and again in the magazine “Cahiers de Cassiciacum” the following year), he published a thesis which has not been refuted to this day, a thesis consisting of the FORMAL vacancy of the Aspostolic See, certainly from December 7, 1965.

Father Guérard des Lauriers received Episcopal consecration on May 7, 1981 by Bishop Martin Ngo-dinh-Thuc, former Archbishop of Hué: a valid consecration according to the wholly observed traditional rite; a licit and legal consecration according to the power of Legate conferred by Pope Pius XI to Archbishop Ngo-dinh-Thuc on March 13, 1938 (1). Father Guérard died February 27, 1988 and is buried in the cemetery at Raveau.


Excellency, this interview cannot possibly answer all the questions that we would like to ask you. Allow us to concentrate, in a few lines, on the most essential and pressing issues that concern us. This so the Italian faithful can understand who you are, what your ideas are regarding the crisis in the Church, and how you have chosen to act, so as to not abandon the way of the Truth and remain incessantly faithful to the Church which has been placed violently in a state of privation. Here are our questions:


1. Sodalitium: You collaborated for a long time with the Society of Saint Pius X and you were a professor at Écône until 1977. Why did you end your collaboration with Archbishop Lefebvre?

Bishop des Lauriers: I collaborated with Archbishop Lefebvre from the beginning of his work: both at Freiburg and Écône from 1970. On the 25th of December 1970, Archbishop Lefebvre celebrated midnight mass and gave the homily; he returned then, to the joy of everyone, to the INTEGRITY of the traditional rite. I celebrated the Mass of the day, pronounced the sermon of which I still have the outline, warmly thanking Archbishop Lefebvre.

I remained Professor at Écône until September 1977: the date in which I preached the spiritual retreat for the return to the Seminary, after which, a short time later,  I was dismissed. I was not permitted to visit with the Dominican brothers that Archbishop Lefebvre had accepted at Écône as students. The reason for this exclusion: I expressed many times in “private circles” (intra muros), and had given during a public lecture, a perfectly clear allusion to the “Thesis” [2a].


2. Sodalitium: At that time you elaborated your theological Thesis on its fundamental points: the Council, the Magisterium, the Papacy. Can you summarize these for us briefly:

    • Can you describe your theological Thesis?
    • What, especially, is lacking in the doctrinal position of Archbishop Lefebvre?

Bishop des Lauriers:

[2a] The “Thesis” “of Cassiciacum” (exhibited in the “Cahiers de Cassiciacum” (2).

[I.] The formulation of the Thesis of Cassiciacum (herein designated at “C-Thesis”).

α This thesis requires a metaphysical presupposition which is essential in order to make it explicit.

Every created being is composed. If this being is material (and not a pure spirit), this composition is that of matter and form. The form is defined as “quo aliquid habet esse”, “that according to which this entity has being”; so the soul is the form of the human composite. Matter, considered as a whole, is in the entity that which is distinct from the form having its being through the form: the subject matter is defined as “quod habet esse” “that which, in the concrete entity, has the the being”; thus the body united with the soul, in the human composite.

From this it follows that, from a Metaphysical point of view [that of being], matter is determined by form: there is, from matter to form, an ontological relationship [on, ontos: entity], that of determined to determinant.

In this way, if in the same concrete entity there are two “parts”, A and B, such that A is, from the ontological point of view, determined by B; and if you want to characterize this relationship WHICH IS IN THE ENTITY between A and B, placing ourselves from the point of view of the entity, the following must be said. To consider this entity MATERIALITER, is to consider “part” A in this entity. To consider this same entity FORMALITER, is to consider “part” B in it. To consider a  human being MATERIALITER is to consider in him the body, and all that which is in relationship with the body. To consider this same human being FORMALITER, is to consider in him the soul, and all that which is in relationship with the soul.

Why introduce this MATERIALITER-FORMALITER distinction? which seems an abstraction and complication? If it is done, it is done out of a concern for REALISM, so that the discourse is more in conformity with reality. In fact, what exists is the WHOLE, the composite, the man, who is body and soul together. The body without the soul is not even a human body; the separated human soul is not a person. If you want to understand the body and soul as they ARE IN THE REALITY, you have to consider them as a whole: you must consider: THIS human being according to his body, which is to consider him MATERIALITER (from the point of view of “matter”); and you must consider THIS human being according to his soul, which is to consider him FORMALITER (from the point of view of “form”).  The distinction: MATERIALITER-FORMALITER, which is, therefore, a question of “points of view”, seems to be more abstract than the MATTER-FORM distinction, which is a distinction of “things”. However, in reality, the distinction MATERIALITER-FORMALITER better respects the concreteness of the entity, and the true nature of the “parts” as they really are IN THE ENTITY and ONLY IN THE ENTITY.

From this MAXIMAL conformity to REALITY, it necessarily follows that the MATERIALITER-FORMALITER distinction has, ex se, an analogical scope that the MATTER-FORM distinction cannot have: the latter not concerning being as such, but only a particular category of created entities.

β The relationship that exists between the physical person of the Pope and the papal charism, is distinctly pointed out through the MATERIALITER-FORMALITER distinction.

Let’s explain it using a “concrete case”.

The cover of Sodalitium No. 13

Cardinal E. Pacelli is the elect of a valid Conclave, yet he is still not the Pope.  However, different from all the other Cardinals, Cardinal Pacelli, and he alone, is in the final disposition to become the Pope: exactly as, in the course of a generation, the matter that is to become that of the generated is in the final disposition to receive the form of the generated. It can therefore be said, by analogy, that the physical person elected by a supposedly valid Conclave is MATERIALITER constituted Pope; and this is IPSO FACTO; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that the said physical person is not mortgaged by a hidden obex (obstacle), suspending in him the normal effect of the election.

Cardinal E. Pacelli accepts the election. He receives, in the same act of his acceptance, the Communication exercised by Christ in favor of Peter and his successors [John XXI, 15-17]. Cardinal E. Pacelli is therefore constituted Vicar of Jesus Christ. And because the fact of being the Pope consists very precisely in being the Vicar of Jesus Christ, one can say that that same physical person, Cardinal E. Pacelli, who by virtue of the election had been Pope only MATERIALITER, became FORMALITER Pope through that same act in which he accepted the election. In this second stage [FORMALITER], there is, however, a sine qua non condition; and this, exactly as in the first stage [MATERIALITER]. This condition is evident, and is as follows: It is necessary that, in the same moment in which Cardinal E. Pacelli affirms exteriorly the acceptance of the election, HE DOES NOT POSIT interiorly, in a secret way, an obex which would impede him from RECEIVING the Communication promised and exercised by Christ. If it were to be further ascertained that such an obstacle had existed in the act of his acceptance, Cardinal E. Pacelli would not have been FORMALITER Pope at any time.

The FORMALITER-MATERIALITER distinction, understood as it now has been explained, has been employed by Saint Robert Bellarmine. This distinction and the two conditions sine qua non which have been specified, on the other hand, impose themselves in the metaphysics of “common sense”, and in virtue of the NATURAL LAW founded by this metaphysics, demanded by it; and consequently, is also underlying to Divine Law, a fortiori to Canon Law and strictly Ecclesiastical Law.

γ The formulation of the “C-Thesis”, in conformity with the FORMALITER-MATERIALITER distinction.

The “C-Thesis” concerns the relationship referred to in the previous paragraph [β]: relationship between the physical person who at least apparently “occupies” the Episcopal See of Rome, and the charism that belongs to the Pope.

It comprises two parts, in conformity with the two members of the key distinction [FORMALITER-MATERIALITER].

A] The “occupier” of the Apostolic See [Cardinal Montini, at least from December 7, 1965; Bishop Luciani, Bishop Wojtyla] is not POPE FORMALITER.  One must not designate him with the name Pope.

That is to say, the “occupier” IS NOT, in any of his acts, the Vicar of Christ.  These acts, precisely insofar as they claim to be the acts of the Pope as Pope, ARE NULL. It is not a matter of disobedience concerning the “ordinances” claimed to be carried out by Bishop Wojtyla as if he were Pope; since he is not, in act, the Vicar of Jesus Christ; all the ordinances carried out under this pseudo-title are VAIN, NULL, without bearing on reality. One MUST not disobey, but IGNORE.

B] The “occupant” of the Apostolic See IS, HOWEVER, THE “POPE” MATERIALITER. One may conveniently designate him with the name “pope”; the quotation marks co-signifying that he is not Pope.

That is to say that he is the “occupier” of the See, in an illegitimate and sacrilegious way [since he is not the Pope and makes himself appear as such]; but he occupies it. Designating an authentic Pope canonically requires having previously ascertained and declared the real vacancy of the materially occupied See.

C] In summary, it can be said: since December 7, 1965 at the latest, there is  FORMAL VACANCY of the Apostolic See, although this See has been and is materially “occupied” by three persons, all in a state of Capital Schism.

[II.] Proof of the “C-Thesis”, in each of its two parts.

α. The proof of part [A], that is: the “occupant” of the Apostolic See IS NOT Pope FORMALITER. Since, as was explained previously [I β], the elect of a supposedly valid Conclave is constituted Pope FORMALITER in the very act of his acceptance, ONLY IF, at the very instant in which he publicly puts forward this act, he does not interiorly pose another act, and is not interiorly in a hidden state, which would impede the RECEIVING of the Communication promised and exercised by Christ.

Since in fact it is in RECEIVING this Communication that one is actually the Vicar of Christ, that is, Pope FORMALITER, opposing oneself voluntarily to this RECEPTION, is to voluntarily make it impossible to be Pope FORMALITER.

Obviously, the fealty of the person who agrees to be the elect of a valid Conclave must be presumed a priori. However, Leo XIII expressly declared (“Apostolicae Curae”, September 13, 1896; D.S. 3318): “The Church must judge intention in the way it is exteriorly manifested”. Did the “occupant” (of the Apostolic See), accepting the election of the Conclave, really have the intention to receive the Communication exercised by Christ? To answer this question we must, according to Leo XIII, consider the FACTS. If the “occupant” had, in reality, the intention to receive the above-mentioned Communication, then he should have AFTERWARDS, and HABITUALLY con-formed himself to all the exigencies of said Communication. If, on the contrary, it is ascertained that the “occupant” CONTINUOUSLY AND SYSTEMATICALLY acts against the most fundamental exigencies that are inherent to the Communication exercised by Christ, WE MUST CONCLUDE, (according to Leo XIII) that the “occupant” did not have, in reality, the intention to receive it, and that, in consequence, he never was [or he ceased to be] the Pope FORMALITER.

Now, in the present case, the requirements for the Communication exercised by Christ in favor of Peter and his successors are of two types. The former are, in fact, presupposed to the Communication, but are from the field of ontology, so that, although pertaining to the natural order, they are imperatively compelling for the Communication, because they are immanent to it. The other requirements are consequent to the Communication, and are of the supernatural order “quoad substantiam”. Let us then examine these two types of exigencies, observing how the  “occupant” of the Apostolic See behaves toward each one respectively.

Jesus Christ, instituting His Church as a visible, human society has, ipso facto, decreed for this Church, which is His, the norms that are immanent by nature, and therefore necessary, to every Society of this type. Now, we limit ourselves here to remembering that, in every Society, the very existence of authority requires that it be founded for the purpose of realizing the common good which is the end of that Society. A physical or moral “person” who, in the midst of a Society, would pursue, habitually and in many ways, the annihilation of this Society’s peculiar common good, such a “person” therefore cannot be the authority of the said Society. The Church, being born according to this law, “eam non minuit, sed sacravit: did not diminish it, but  consecrated it” [just as “JESUS, being born of MARY, consecrated Virginity in HER, and did not diminish it”]. Now we observe that for 25 years, with indirect but very effective and convergent procedures, the “occupier” of the Apostolic See pursues the degradation of what he should, instead, promote, that is, the “Good” peculiarly entrusted to the Church by Her divine Founder, especially the PURE OBLATION and the revealed Deposit. It follows that the  “occupier” of the Apostolic See cannot be, in the Church, the “Authority”. He is not Pope FORMALITER.

The Communication exercised by Christ in favor of His authentic Vicar also presents some “prerogatives” [and, these seen from the outside, some requirements] that are consequent to it. The main one is Infallibility. It is revealed that Infallibility involves two forms: the solemn extraordinary Magisterium [the Pope declares “ex cathedra” (such as the Immaculate Conception by Pope Pius IX and the Assumption by Pope Pius XII)]; and the universal ordinary Magisterium [the totality of Bishops, dispersed or reunited, in communion with the Pope (such as the Assumption, before it had been defined by Pope Pius XII)]. It is therefore impossible that the authentic Vicar of Jesus Christ, when pronouncing according to one or the other of these two forms, affirms something that carries opposition by contradiction with an already revealed doctrine. Now on December 7, 1965, Cardinal Montini promulgated, committing at least [see 3] the universal ordinary Magisterium, a proposition concerning “religious freedom” which bears opposition by contradiction with doctrine infallibly defined by Pius IX in the encyclical “Quanta cura” linked to the “Syllabus” [December 8, 1864].

It is therefore necessary to conclude, in conformity with Leo XIII, that issuing this act, Cardinal Montini didn’t have the intention to receive the Communication exercised by Jesus Christ, and was no longer Pope FORMALITER.

To summarize [α]. The Vicar of Jesus Christ can only act, AS SUCH, IN ACCORDANCE WITH the charism that he obtains from the Communication exercised in his favor by Jesus Christ. He can, therefore, only act in accordance with the fundamental natural norms sanctioned and assumed by Jesus Christ, and in accordance with the TRUTH already manifested by Jesus Christ. Any contradiction, observable and observed on one of these two points, proves a posteriori, necessarily, that the perpetrator of such a crime cannot be the Vicar of Christ.

β. The proof of part [B], which is that the “occupant” of the Apostolic See is “pope” MATERIALITER.

We have previously explained [I β] in what sense it is appropriate to say that the elect of a supposed valid Conclave is, even before his acceptance, Pope MATERIALITER, ON THE CONDITION, HOWEVER: that, first of all, the Conclave is valid [how many “rumors” have circulated, plausible if not well founded, concerning the last three Conclaves…Tisserand, Siri…]; and that in the second place, the apparent elect is not mortgaged by an obex which has remained hidden and which suspends the normal effect of the election [If, for example, it were to be proved with certainty that Bishop Wojtyla belonged to an anti-Christian occult society before his election].

Now, the existence of a possible obex, discovered a posteriori, both in the “Conclave” that elects, and in the person thus chosen, is not sufficient to invalidate the fact that he is, at least temporarily, “pope” MATERIALITER. Because a certain fact WHICH IS NOT OF THE ONTOLOGICAL ORDER, cannot be immanent to the divine Norms themselves. Such a fact can, therefore, have value and FORCE in the Church only by virtue of an order and a promulgation made by the authentic Authority of the Church. And, since such Authority is currently lacking, no one is currently qualified in the Church [we mean: the true Church; not as such the Church over which Bishop Wojtyla presides] to declare that after December 7, 1965, Cardinal Montini ceased to be “pope” MATERIALITER.

The same observation applies to the “occupants” of the Apostolic See who succeeded Cardinal Montini; this only TO THE EXTENT THAT a “hierarchy” which is so only MATERIALITER can perpetuate itself. Such a perpetuation is not, ex se, impossible. However, it expressly requires Episcopal Consecrations which are certainly valid. And, since the new rite is doubtful, the “occupants” [of the Apostolic See] will soon be no more than “background actors”! Bishop Wojtyla is, in this regard at least, an eminent precursor.

How will the Apostolicity of the Church be saved in these conditions? Whatever happens of this Mystery, which currently obscures the “mystery of iniquity”, it must clearly be maintained that the apostolic succession will be safeguarded, uninterrupted “until the end of time” [Matthew XXVIII, 20]. “Visibility” is not a mark of the Church; it has undergone eclipses, since it is only DE JURE POSSIBILITY, not always realized IN FACT [see the Great Schism], to observe Apostolicity. While Apostolicity is a mark, permanent like the Church itself. It is therefore absolutely necessary to maintain the mark, without which apostolic succession would OBJECTIVELY be interrupted.

This rule, imperative and evident, is as follows. The physical or moral person who has, in the Church, the quality to declare the TOTAL vacancy of the Apostolic See, is IDENTICAL to the one who, in the Church, has the capacity to provide for Apostolic See itself.

Whosoever currently declares: “Bishop Wojtyla is not pope at all [not even MATERIALITER]”, must: either convene the Conclave [!], or show the credentials that directly and immediately constitute him as Legate of Our Lord Jesus Christ [!!].

These last observations sufficiently show that the objective weight of the question: “Is the occupant of the Apostolic See, yes or no, ‘pope’ MATERIALITER?”, is so beyond our reach, that concretely and in reality, the answer to this question has almost no impact on the behavior effectively possible for the faithful attached to Tradition.

[2b] What, most of all, is lacking in the doctrinal attitude of Archbishop Lefebvre?

The main vice of “Lefebvrism” consists in a radical duplicity, which inoculates heresy.

From the left: dom Gerard Calvet o.s.b., Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, and father Guérard des Lauriers o.p., in 1970

[I.] “In verbis”. Duplicity. Regarding every event, there are always two statements, contrary to each other, concerning relations with “Rome”: one for the inner circles [There is nothing to expect from Rome. Archbishop Lefebvre is about to consecrate Bishops]; the other for large audiences (Confirmations, Ordinations) [“Everything is about to fall into place. Don’t compromise everything. No Episcopal Consecrations”]. The last “episode” of this pantomime, that lasted for ten years, took place on December, 8, 1986. In an open letter to John Paul II, which had been kept secret until December, 8, and subsequently kept in silence, Archbishop Lefebvre believed “that all the conciliar reforms and all the acts of Rome that are carried out in this impiety must be considered as null and void”. This declaration, read on the morning of December 8th in the Priories, kept back some Seminarians who were determined NOT to renew their vows and, therefore, were about to leave the Society. However, having given the Écônians the instruction not to speak about this letter, Archbishop Lefebvre continues to affirm that John Paul II is truly Pope. Thus, according to Archbishop Lefebvre, a person is the Authority, and yet all the acts that this person poses as Authority, can be NULL, “they must be considered as null”. Archbishop Lefebvre has such an extraordinary habit of duplicity that cynically pushes him to the point of affirming contradiction.

[II.] “In factis”. Deception and blasphemy. The practice of the Priories teaches in fact, in praxis, although without saying it, that, from an authentic “Authority” [that is, Bishop Wojtyla is truly “pope”, and he is the acting Vicar of Christ], comes a “missio” so flawed [the so-called new mass, ecumenism…Assisi, and the rest…] that Archbishop Lefebvre refuses to conform to it.

This is equivalent, in act, to a blasphemy against the holiness of the Church. The MISSIO that truly proceeds from the Church can only be holy.

[III.] “In verbis et factis”. Deception, and the spread of heresy. For at least ten years, it has been taught in Écône, repeated and imposed on the faithful of the Priories, and on the [innocent and defenseless!] children who attended the schools run by the Society of Saint Pius X, that the Magisterium is infallible ONLY if the Pope speaks “ex cathedra”. This is equivalent to denying the infallibility of the universal ordinary Magisterium, which, however, is affirmed by all of Tradition, particularly by Vatican I. “Lefebvrism” thus spreads HERESY, in order to be able to proclaim that Bishop Wojtyla is truly Pope, and thus be able to preserve the support of the generous faithful, who are set on the path to Hell instead of declaring the Truth to them.


3. Sodalitium: It is said that, given that Vatican II did not define dogmas, the indisputable and recognized presence of errors against the Faith in the conciliar texts does not pose any problem regarding the infallibility of the Church. Is all this true? And if it is not, how to judge such an assertion?

Bishop des Lauriers: The characterization of Vatican II [see Cahiers de Cassiciacum, No. 1 pp. 14-15; No. 6 pp. 13-81].

It was legitimate for Vatican II not to define dogmas. But it is an error or a falsehood to state counter-truths about the nature of Vatican II. An Ecumenical Council convoked and approved by the Pope belongs at the very least and by definition to the ordinary universal Magisterium of the Church. Per se, that is, if things are to conform to what their nature requires, the documents that emanate from an assembly of this kind and which formally reveal the light of the Faith [and this is the case of the definition of “religious freedom”] and which deals with a doctrine already infallibly promulgated, are ipso facto promulgated with the mark of infallibility. Vatican II could, strictly speaking, claim itself as “ordinary”: but what it did not, and could not do, was make a promulgation whose clauses canonically imply infallibility, not to be infallible.


4. Sodalitium: What to think, then, of Paul VI and John Paul II?

Bishop des Lauriers: God has judged. God will judge. As for us, we do not judge…at least not intentions. These “popes” profess heresy and are at the very least affected by “Capital Schism” [see Cahiers de Cassiciacum Nn. 3-4]. The best that we can do, it seems to me, is not to consider them. “Nec nominetur in vobis” [Let it not so much as be named among you] (Ephesians V, 3). Sed tamen oremus pro eis. [But nevertheless, pray for them];  Miserere, de Profundis.


5. Sodalitium: What are your thoughts on the Traditional Mass celebrated by priests who, while being critical of Rome, still support that John Paul II is truly Pope and name him in the Te igitur, during the Canon in the Mass?

Bishop des Lauriers:  Traditional Masses, celebrated with the mention of John Paul II during the Te igitur.

The priests that celebrate such a Mass pronounce the following words: “In primis quae Tibi offerimus pro Ecclesia Tua sancta catholica…: una cum famulo tuo Papa nostro Johanne Paulo…”. These Masses are commonly designated with the name “UNA CUM MASSES”.

It is necessary, in this proclamation, to consider two things: on the one hand that which is directly meant; on the other, that which is indirectly co-expressed, due to its context.

[I.] That which is directly meant by the formula: “una cum”. The crime of sacrilege.

The general meaning of the supplication is determined by the words: “quae tibi offerimus pro…”. However, independently from this general sense, the phrase UNA CUM affirms that the Church [of Christ and of God: “your”], holy and Catholic, is “una cum” [one with] the servant of God who is our Pope John Paul II. The phrase UNA CUM affirms, therefore, that, reciprocally, Bishop Wojtyla is “ONE, [together], WITH” [is the same thing with] the Church of Jesus Christ, holy and Catholic. Now, we have demonstrated it [2a γ], this affirmation is an error. Because, given that W. persists in professing and promulgating heresy, he cannot be the Vicar of Jesus Christ; he cannot, as proper “pope” [famulo Tuo papa nostro], be “one same thing with” the Church of Jesus Christ. The ‘una cum’ affirms and proclaims, therefore, an error that CONCRETELY concerns the Faith.

This being so, we must conclude that the “una cum” Mass is, “ex se”, objectively stained with sacrilege. The MASS, in fact, is the sacred action par excellence, since the Priest acts “in Persona Christi”. And if this instrumental role eminently concerns the consecratory act, it is equally realized, by derivation, in what precedes and prepares this act, or what immediately follows it. Now, everything that a sacred action includes must be pure, that is, in conformity with that which nature requires. A proclamation that immediately specifies the concrete exercise of the Faith must always be TRUE, taking into account Faith itself. It must be so, in a second sense, if it is done during a sacred action. Therefore, if a proclamation that immediately specifies the concrete exercise of the Faith is made during a sacred action, and if it is erroneous, it constitutes IPSO FACTO AND OBJECTIVELY A SIN, not only against the Faith but also against the sacred action. Such a proclamation is therefore tainted [weighed on] by a crime of the kind: “Sacrilege”: and this is so OBJECTIVELY AND INESCAPABLY, regardless of the sin committed by the participants [see 6].

[II.] That which is indirectly co-expressed by the formula “una cum”. The crime of Capital Schism.

“Quae tibi offerimus pro…”. This is an offer that is made IN FAVOR OF. Here we have what is directly meant. For this reason, some [especially Dom Gerard Calvet, o.s.b.] have asserted that at the Te igitur we pray for the Pope and absolutely not WITH the Pope. This is a superficial view. In fact, one must observe that in this first part of the Te igitur, the Pope is considered AS POPE, since, precisely, he is mentioned as “una cum Ecclesia”, “one with the Church” (2).

Furthermore, the application of the fruit of the Mass [“pro”] requested as aleatory in favor of private persons in the two Mementos, is requested in the Te igitur: IN AN EQUAL WAY, jointly [una cum] in favor of the Church and the Pope, of course as FREE “ex parte Dei” (on the part of God), but as NECESSARY since CERTAIN “ex parte nostri” (on our part).

From this last observation, the following consequence emerges.

Let us remember that the “application” of merit is only necessary [or: “de condigno”] in two cases, namely: 1) This “application” is made by Christ Himself: He, and He alone, merits, BY RIGHT, in favor of others; 2) This “application” is made to the person who acquires the merit: each person merits “de condigno” for himself. Therefore, since the application of the fruit of the Mass is made BY RIGHT to a moral person which is JOINTLY and in an equal way [una cum] constituted by the Church and the Pope, IT IS NECESSARY that this SAME moral person is at the beginning of the Sacrifice of which it has the RIGHT to receive the fruit. After all, it is commonly stated that, if the Mass is primordially the Sacrifice of Christ, it is equally and jointly the Sacrifice of the Church [That is why, although the Priest who offers the Sacrifice operates in Persona Christi WITH REGARD TO THE EXERCISE OF THE ACT, without the mediation of the Church, however, AS REGARDS THE SPECIFICATION OF THE ACT, the Priest can only operate IN THE MEDIATION OF THE CHURCH. Since only the Church has the divine capacity to guarantee with certainty: conformity to the Truth for the article that She promulgates in the Name of Christ; conformity to Reality for the rite that She prescribes in the Name of Christ. (The Priest that makes use of a rite, ipso facto adopts the intention of the authority who is responsible for this rite… and all the consequences of it can be glimpsed!)].

Moreover, in the orderly Church, through the mediation exercised by the Hierarchy, it is the Pope who ultimately confers the “mission” of celebrating any Mass. The Pope is, in the Church, the “Supreme Pontiff”. And it is because the Church and the Pope jointly [una cum] command in the Church militant the offering of the Sacrifice peculiar to this Church, they have the RIGHT “in primis” to the fruit of this Sacrifice: in the CREATED ORDER, they are “in primis” regarding the END [that is the application of the fruit], BECAUSE THEY ARE “in primis” with regard to the ORIGIN [that is, the intimation of the celebration].

Thus one sees the true scope of the expression: “una cum”. It does not only mean that, in celebrating the sacrifice of the Mass, one prays for the Church and for the Pope, as for [pro] this private person or such particular intention. “Una cum” co-means, implicitly but NECESSARILY, that in celebrating the Mass, one celebrates IN UNION WITH and UNDER THE DEPENDENCE OF this moral person that the Church and the Pope jointly are; since this moral person has in primis the RIGHT to the fruit of the sacrifice; a RIGHT in primis that alone can metaphysically found the fact of participating BY RIGHT in primis to the act of Christ-Priest who offers this same Sacrifice.

From all this is derived the qualification that must be attributed to the “una cum” Traditional Mass.

Such a Mass is valid [assuming the priest has been validly ordained!], due to the rite which, like the Deposit, remains divinely guaranteed by the Magisterium of the Church. However, whatever desire the celebrant may SUBJECTIVELY have, the act he carries out OBJECTIVELY and INELUCTABLY implies the affirmation of being in communion with [una cum], and even under the DEPENDENCE of [papa nostro] a person in a state of capital schism. The act of such a celebration is therefore tainted with a crime of the kind: “schism”; and this, OBJECTIVELY AND INELUCTABLY, regardless of the sin committed by the participants: the celebrating priest, or the attending faithful [see 6].


6. Sodalitium: Can you clarify, please, the problems raised by attending  “una cum” Traditional Masses?

Bishop des Lauriers: Problems raised by attending “una cum” Traditional Masses.

These difficulties result from what we have exposed.

It is clearly necessary to set aside the cases in which attendance at such a Mass is necessary for an extrinsic reason [family reason, for example], it being understood that the person who attends such a Mass will definitely and ostensibly demonstrate that he is attending WITHOUT PARTICIPATING.

If this last clause [MANIFESTING THAT YOU ARE NOT PARTICIPATING] is not fulfilled, then, ex se, the mere fact of attending constitutes participation, a guarantee given to the celebration. And since it is OBJECTIVELY AND INELUCTABLY tainted with the crime of sacrilege and of schism, does it not follow that by participating in this celebration one incurs the guilt of these sins?

Bishop Guérard des Lauriers during his visit to the IMBC’s chapel in Turin, on June 14, 1987

The answer is, DE JURE, affirmative. It follows that, DE JURE, the faithful attached to Tradition must not attend the “una cum” Traditional Mass. And this, taking into account: firstly themselves, and secondly the Testimony they must bear to others.

This answer, DE JURE affirmative, can be practically held in suspense by two considerations. The first is of a general nature, taking account of the rules of morality. A crime is only a sin if it is known to be such. Ignorance excuses guilt if it is candid; it increases guilt if it is calculated, etc… A good number of fait

hful attached to Tradition do not understand either the scope, or consequently, the gravity of “una cum”. THEY MUST BE INSTRUCTED [see 10]. But, until they understand, they cannot be blamed for attending the “una cum” Traditional Mass… ONLY GOD scrutinizes men’s innermost thoughts…

The second consideration that can keep the de jure norms in abeyance [that is: not attending the “una cum Mass”] depends on the current situation. It may happen that the faithful have practically no other means of communicating than by attending a una cum Mass. Now, while it is possible to live and progress in the state of grace without communicating, this deprivation is not without difficulties and sometimes dangers. And as the Church has always admitted that in danger of death one can resort even to an excommunicated confessor, is it not perhaps appropriate to resort to a una cum Mass to participate in the Sacrifice and communicate? Pius XII recalled it with authority: in the militant Church, it is the salvation of souls that constitutes the finality of finalities. Assistance at the “una cum Mass” can therefore be the subject of a “case of conscience”. Every case is a case: and must ultimately be resolved by the conscience of the interested person, but not without the advice and directives given by a “non una cum” priest. Neither univocal rigorism, which does not take conscience into account; nor sentimental laxity: for example, a person who can communicate once every two weeks at a “non una cum” Mass, has no reason and MUST NOT THEREFORE, in the interval, attend a “una cum Mass”, much less communicate there (3).


7. Sodalitium: Excellency, in 1981 you were consecrated by Bishop Thuc. This Bishop was not always clear in his acts. Following this Consecration you were “excommunicated” by Cardinal Ratzinger. What are your thoughts on all this?

Bishop des Lauriers:  I received Episcopal Consecration on May 7, 1981 from Archbishop Martin NGO DINH THUC.

I affirm that this Consecration is valid, legal as much as it could be, perfectly licit.

We call “legal” that which conforms to the letter of the law. We call “licit” what conforms to the final ends desired by the law. The virtue of epikeia consists in neglecting the “letter”, if it proves contrary to the “ends”.

[I.] The Consecration is valid.

Given that: 1) the traditional rite has been fully observed [with the exception of the reading of the “Roman mandate”!]; 2) Archbishop Thuc and I had the intention of doing that which the Church does.

[II.] The Consecration is legal, as far as possible.

In fact, it should be known, that with a Brief dated March 5, 1938, Pius XI instituted Bishop Thuc as his Legate [“deputamus in Nostrum Legatum Petrum Martinum Ngó-Dhin-Thuc Episcopum titularem Saesinensem ad fines nobis notos, cum omnibus necessariis facultatibus”].

Archbishop Thuc had therefore the power to consecrate Bishops WITHOUT PREVIOUSLY submitting the case to the Holy See, and therefore without the “Roman mandate”. Archbishop Thuc retained this SAME power when he was established as Archbishop of Huè by Pius XII. This is proved by the fact that it was Archbishop Thuc, and not the Apostolic Administrator, who selected and consecrated all the Bishops of Vietnam between 1940 and 1950 [Archbishop Thuc himself explained to me, and not without an insistent malice, the reason (hidden and true!). In this way the pensions and expenses of all these same Bishops in the event of retirement or illness become the burden incumbent to the faithful of Vietnam; while if these same Bishops had been consecrated by the Apostolic Administrator, they would have been the burden of “Rome”]. Whatever is made of this “amusing” [!] “end”, it remains that from the strict point of view of the formal cause, “Rome”, DE FACTO, under Pius XII, had confirmed Archbishop Thuc in all his powers and prerogatives of Legate. Archbishop Thuc was aware of having conserved them, and he revealed this orally to several people : “when they will find these documents after my death…….!” . But these Documents were not brought to light, and in an “updated” version, until very late [they went through multiple and dangerous vicissitudes], so it was not possible to make use of them, as would have been appropriate. It is therefore with the greatest good faith and even in all candor, that Archbishop Thuc proceeded to carry out: Consecrations and Ordinations. He rightly thought he had the canonical right to do so: as this right had not been taken away from him.

Are the aforementioned Consecrations and Ordinations, made by Archbishop Thuc, “legal”: that is, do they comply with the “letter” of the law? For them to be perfectly so, it would have been necessary that AFTER having effecting the act [not “before”, because Archbishop Thuc legally had the power], Archbishop Thuc submitted the case to the Authority. But Archbishop Thuc believed, like myself, that there is no longer any Authority: though, paradoxically and unfortunately, he was keen to nonetheless remain in good relations with the “authority”. (4) [Read: Authority = the true Authority, of which there is currently a “formal vacancy”; while “authority” (in quotes) = PSEUDO-Authority that has been raging since December 7, 1965]. From all this, two consequences:

From an OBJECTIVE point of view, i.e. considering in themselves the Consecrations and Ordinations carried out by Archbishop Thuc, they were as very “legal” as could have been [and can be!].  Since, on the one hand, Archbishop Thuc had the juridical power to carry them out without the “Roman mandate”; and, on the other hand, it was and remains impossible to “report” these Consecrations and Ordinations to an Authority which, in practice and as such, does not exist. The “legality” of the aforementioned Consecrations and Ordinations is, like EVERYTHING currently in the militant Church, IN A STATE OF PRIVATION, due to the “formal vacancy” of the Apostolic See.

From a SUBJECTIVE point of view, i.e. considering the aforementioned Consecrations and Ordinations as one of the behaviors of Archbishop Thuc, one is obliged to observe that they were for him the “sword of pain” and the stone of scandal. These acts demanded that he break with “Rome”, and he did so in words: but he desired, for the “reasons of the heart”, to have some respect for “Rome”, and was caught in the trap where he met his death.

“Noli judicare si non vis errare”. Regardless of this intimate agony and the Judgment of God, the fact remains that the Consecrations and Ordinations carried out by Archbishop Thuc were as legal as can be, participating, according to their nature, in the state of deprivation that currently affects the entire Church militant, and,  distinctly, each of its components… The Church, Mystical Body, Bride of Christ, remaining virgin, even on earth, of any privation.

[III.] The Consecration is licit.

To better understand this we must remember that, in the militant Church considered as a human collective, EVERY PURELY ECCLESIASTICAL LAW [the vacancy of and the providing for the Apostolic See are part of this type of law], EVEN THOSE WHICH CARRY A LATAE SENTENTIAE SENTENCE, has executive force only by virtue of the Authority currently exercised. If it were otherwise, if purely ecclesiastical laws with executive force independently of the Authority could exist in the Church militant, it would be necessary that, at least for these laws, the Authority received its own mandate from the Church militant inasmuch the latter is a human collective. But this doctrine is explicitly condemned by Vatican I as erroneous [D.S. 3045]. Every purely ecclesiastical law is therefore, radically, a law of the Authority: which, by its essence, is monarchic [monós archè].

Bishop Guérard des Lauriers with Bishop Thuc, the day of his episcopal consecration

It follows that every purely ecclesiastical law can be subjected, and IS CURRENTLY SUBJECTED, to the same vicissitudes of human laws. On the one hand, the Authority that gives force to the law can fail: and this is what happens, due to the formal vacancy of the Apostolic See. On the other hand, it may happen, per accidens, that applying the letter of the law would harm, rather than achieve, the aim desired by the law. This is exactly what is happening currently. The need for the “Roman mandate”, a need strengthened by Pius XII, as a condition of every episcopal consecration, is aimed at better safeguarding and affirming the monarchical character of the Authority, which is exercised over each Bishop, and over all the Bishops of the catholicity. Now, under Karol Wojtyla, a “consecration” made with the “Roman mandate” entails: that, first of all, the “consecrated” person [assuming he is!] is ipso facto in a state of capital Schism, as is W. himself: secondly, that the “consecration” made according to the new rite, which is doubtful, is itself doubtful, and must therefore be considered practically as invalid. Fidelity to the “Roman mandate” therefore has the consequence, in the short term, that Wojtyla will be the absolute monarch of a world assembly whose members will take on the episcopal insignia for the occasion, although they are not Bishops at all, nor consequently successors of the Apostles.

“The letter kills, the Spirit gives life” [2 Cor III, 6; see Romans II, 27-29].

When the letter of the law [the prescription of the “Roman mandate”] has the effect of DESTROYING the end desired by the law [the unity, and therefore the very reality of the militant Church] then it becomes virtuous, the virtue of EPIKEIA, to take no account of the letter of the law, to the strict and only extent necessary to continue to ensure the end desired by the law. Acts that are placed, by necessity, against the letter of the law, with a view to ensuring the purpose desired by the law, such acts are called “licit”, although they are illegal. This doctrine has always been admitted by the Church.

We therefore affirm that the Consecrations conferred by Archbishop Thuc, as legal as they could be [II] since Archbishop Thuc was exempted from the “Roman mandate”, were and remain PERFECTLY LICIT; although, as we have explained [II], their “legality” remains mortgaged by the deprivation that currently affects the militant Church.

[IV.] “Cardinal” Ratzinger notified me [through the Parisian nuncio, and not the General of the Dominicans] that I had incurred “latae sententiae” excommunication. He encouraged me to “return”, assuring me of a warm welcome!

– I did not respond to this message, for the following reasons:

“Ex parte objecti”. The sentence is, in itself, deprived of any foundation: as we have previously exposed [II, III].

“Ex parte subjecti”: id est: Josephi Ratzinger, et “auctoritatis”. The only acts of “authority” that may not be LACKING FOUNDATION are exclusively those ordered to the materialiter persistence of the hierarchy in the Church: only MATERIALITER, since [see 2a], the “authority” has no power in the Church other than “materialiter” and not “formaliter”. Thus, for example, the act with which the “authority” would recognize the value and ecclesial scope of the Consecrations conferred by Archbishop Thuc: this act would be valid. While every act that is not expressly ordered to the permanence of the hierarchy [at least “materialiter”] is GROUNDLESS.

We must take no account of something lacking foundation, which is in vain: this is the counsel of Saint John (II John, 10-11).

– The message from “Cardinal” Ratzinger amused me and also cheered me up.  Of all the Bishops who fully profess the Catholic Faith, I am the only one who is “excommunicated” by W.’s “Rome”. As I am in no way in communion with that “Rome”, I give thanks that it has, at least on one point, declared what the Truth is.


8. Sodalitium: In 1984 and in 1986 you consecrated two Bishops, without Rome’s approval. Why did you do this? Do you think you should still consecrate Bishops and ordain priests?

Bishop des Lauriers: I consecrated two Bishops without “Roman mandate”, Bishop STORCK [April 30, 1984]; and Bishop MCKENNA [August 22, 1986].

[I.] It is necessary that the PURE OBLATION, the OBLATIO MUNDA [Mal. I, 11] persists on earth.

Some attribute to me the intention of wanting to “save the Church”. On the contrary, I “in directo” refuse to associate with those who profess this purpose. Since GOD ALONE, JESUS ALONE (see 11) will save his Church in the Triumph of his Mother. I am certain of this fact, it is not up to me to know the “how”.

However, I believe I must sacrifice everything, do everything in my power, so that the OBLATIO MUNDA may persist on earth. The Traditional Mass as celebrated by Archbishop Lefebvre and the priests ordained by him, this Mass celebrated una cum W. is, WHATEVER the DESIRE of the celebrant, OBJECTIVELY stained with a double impurity which belong to sacrilege and capital schism [see 5]. The Mass perpetuated by the “Society of Saint Pius X” is not, CANNOT BE, THE OBLATIO MUNDA. This DE JURE circumstance is even further reinforced by the very aggravating circumstance that follows: in order to [seem to] justify their celebration una cum W., the Écônians do not hesitate to affirm and spread the error, that is to say that they corrupt the Faith of the faithful inoculating them with heresy. (5)

If Archbishop Lefebvre had not profaned the Traditional Mass, demanding it to be celebrated una cum W., I would not even have thought of receiving, much less conferring, the Episcopate.

MISEREOR SUPER SACRIFICIUM! This is the primordial reason, compelling in itself for those who perceive it, for which I have agreed to receive and for which I propose to confer the Episcopate.

[II.] It is eminently fitting that the MISSIO instituted by Christ on earth endures (Matthew XXVIII, 18-20).

Bishop Guérard des Lauriers o.p. with newly consecrated Bishop Robert McKenna o.p.

The MISSIO certainly includes the offering of the OBLATIO MUNDA, and this, first and foremost. But it is broader: “Go, teach, baptize, educate”. It is entrusted to all the Apostles together, and to each one respectively. It is therefore really distinct from the SESSIO, that is to say the jurisdiction promised [Matthew XVI, 18-19] and then plenarily conferred to Peter alone [John XXII, 15-17]; communicated to others through participation in Peter and therefore only in the mediation of Peter. To the “faithful” priests who dispute the real distinction between MISSIO and SESSIO as if it were a “suspicious novelty”, I limit myself to ask a question. “You confess the faithful. You received this power at the moment of your priestly ordination. But this is, very precisely, the MISSIO, in the second of its functions [“baptize”, administer all the sacraments].

But, from whom, from which physical or moral person, do you hold the powers which, according to the Council of Trent, are required so that you can validly use the Power received at the moment of your ordination? No, you do not have ‘these powers’, much less, if possible, if you are from Écône, because then you officially recognize that you are ‘suspended a divinis’”. You reply: “the Church supplies”. But this “suppliance” is guaranteed only in the Church in order, by a purely ecclesiastical law: which, like all laws of this kind, is currently devoid of executive force. Therefore, there is no “suppliance”.

The Truth is that you can make use of Power, without having “powers”, because currently the Decree of Trent has no executive force. The Truth is, consequently, that you exercise the MISSIO, although you are deprived of the normally required participation in the SESSIO… for the reason that the entire Church militant is itself in this SAME state of deprivation (regarding the SESSIO) by which you find yourself affected. The MISSIO and the SESSIO are therefore, within the militant Church, two truly distinct co-essential parts, in law inseparable, in fact currently dissociated: the SESSIO is kept in abeyance by the formal vacancy of the Apostolic See [see 1]; the MISSIO persists, to the extent possible, in the priests and faithful who profess to be attached to Tradition: a MISSIO in a state of privation, we repeat.

In these conditions, here is the alternative that the faithful attached to Tradition must decide:

A) Either not to continue the MISSIO. Since, having been deserted by SESSIO, it finds itself in a state of deprivation, ipso facto abnormal, doomed to multiple dangers, starting with heresy and schism. The only possible, and certainly valid, sacrament would be Baptism. It is enough for God to give Faith and sanctifying grace.

This thinking is therefore, DE JURE, not impossible. This is what THE RAREST OF FAITHFUL get.

B) or continue the MISSIO. Because it is estimated that it is DE FACTO impossible to preserve sanctifying grace, and even Faith alone, without the sacraments.

In dubiis Libertas! You can choose: both A and B.  However: 1) that everyone respects the choice of others; 2) that each person rigorously conforms to the internal, ontological need of his or her own choice.

I chose B. I deeply respect the people who chose A:  God help them. But I protest that some of these people criticize, and judge with an “obsession” as if they were the Authority, the choice B which they are free not to make…even acting as if DE FACTO they had chosen B.

If you choose to continue the MISSIO, so that Faith and LIFE are preserved for the greatest number possible, it is evidently necessary for there to be Bishops. No Sacraments without Priesthood, nor Priesthood without Bishops (6).

MISEREOR SUPER TURBAM! This is the second reason why I agreed to receive, and why I propose to confer, the Episcopate.

[III.] The norms that govern these Episcopal Consecrations lacking the “Roman mandate”.

a. The norms which derive from Canon Law, as having force in the “Church in order”.

Laws, even purely ecclesiastical, are the expression of Wisdom. They always retain directive value even if, per accidens, they alienate their executorial force. It is therefore necessary to ensure that no action is taken that would contravene the inspiring Wisdom of these laws. In this regard, the following should be made clear:

1) The consecrations conferred by Archbishop Thuc are licit, and as legal as they could be.

The consecrations conferred by those Bishops consecrated by Archbishop Thuc are licit, although illegal.

2) None of these consecrations, all of them licit, conferred jurisdiction on the Bishops so consecrated. No Bishop can have jurisdiction if not under the influence of an authentic Vicar of Christ. It is that which Pius XII wanted to rigorously reaffirm, reinforcing the censure placed against consecrations without the Roman mandate. It is an additional reason to maintain the jurisdiction’s relative character that is inherent in the Episcopate.

3) Relations between the Bishops consecrated by Archbishop Thuc are good in themselves. But it must, it must be clearly declared that an eventual assembly of these Bishops does not enjoy, as such, in the Church, any jurisdiction. It could play the role of a ferment. It would not be able to restore Hierarchy.

b. The rules dictated by Epikeia: which establishes the fact that the said consecrations are licit.

Consecrations without a Roman mandate are currently and provisionally licit in view of the salus animarum; which is, according to Pius XII, the lex suprema of the Church militant. Two consequences follow:

The “positive” consequence. It is necessary to multiply these Consecrations, so that the OBLATIO MUNDA and the MISSIO exist throughout the earth. The main condition is that priests are capable and agree to assume this responsibility.

The “negative” consequence. The absence of reference to Authority [currently non-existent] must not lead to an anarchy which would be in contradiction with the very nature of the militant Church. Therefore all Bishops, consecrated without “Roman mandate”, proceeding from Monsignor Thuc must make the solemn and public commitment to submit unconditionally to the Pope if, during their lifetime, Jesus was to give one to His Church. I add that currently, now and whatever happens by divine solution [see 11], the unity between said Bishops cannot rest on a pseudo-hierarchy artificially forged between them. Unity can only rest on FAITH: specifying it, as regards the actual and concrete application, in accordance with the methods that have now been exposed… or those that a discussion based on all the OBJECTIVE data that the current situation entails would impose.


9. Sodalitium: What are your thoughts on the eventual consecration of Bishops on the part of Archbishop Lefebvre, who recognizes John Paul II as Pope, but regularly disobeys him?

Bishop des Lauriers: The eventual consecrations of Bishops on the part of Archbishop Lefebvre.

[I.] What is of primary concern in this event [that is, with regard to the state of the Church] is evidently the person of the “Consecrated”. Therefore, to specify [or examine] the conditions concerning the person of the Consecrator, it is necessary to start from those concerning the person of the “Consecrated”.

[II.] Now, the Bishop capable of perpetuating the MISSIO in the Church militant must satisfy the following conditions:

A Be validly consecrated, licitly, legally as much as is possible [see 7]. CERTAINLY, to be part of the Church. Now, in order that it could be affirmed with [moral] certainty that a faithful integrally professes the whole of the MISSIO, that this faithful has effectively the Faith and that is part of the Church militant, it is necessary, as we have demonstrated (7):

B that this faithful sets as a principle that every member of the Church militant must carefully examine the question of the Pope until he has resolved it categorically;

C that this faithful affirms the vacancy at least “formaliter” of the Apostolic See;

D that this faithful professes of having to submit himself to the Pope when Christ will give one to the Church.

[III.] Could a Bishop consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre satisfy these conditions?

An affirmative response would not present a difficulty except for conditions B and C.  Archbishop Lefebvre, affirming that Bishop Wojtyla is Pope and commanding his faithful not to examine the question, renders it IMPOSSIBLE to be able to affirm with CERTAINTY that he himself is part of the Church founded by Jesus Christ. One must certainly desire it, and one can suppose it; but it is impossible to be sure. As long as Archbishop Lefebvre continues to recognize and demands to recognize that W. is invested with supreme Authority, that same uncertainty would evidently weigh on a Bishop consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre.

[IV.] The answer to question [9] is subject to the declaration that Archbishop Lefebvre will make [?] in the act of a possible consecration.

IF, on the occasion of a possible Consecration, Archbishop Lefebvre disavows his current position and affirms the vacancy (at least the formal one) of the Apostolic See, all conditions [II] will be fulfilled. We will then only have to rejoice. The MISSIO would be ensured by the work of Écône which would finally blossom, LOYALLY, into reality.

After all, it is precisely Archbishop Lefebvre, former Archbishop of Dakar and Tulle, who is in charge of completing this work; since Archbishop NGO DINH THUC died on December 13, 1984, and, at least as far as action is concerned, Archbishop de Castro Mayer only follows Archbishop Lefebvre. As for me, IF Archbishop Lefebvre FINALLY professes the sound doctrine that ALONE can justify his action, I want nothing more than to remain in the solitude from which I have not emerged except for the OBLATIO MUNDA.

IF, on the occasion of a possible Consecration, Archbishop Lefebvre DOES NOT EXPRESSLY AND PUBLICLY DECLARE the disavowal of his current position, even if outwardly he does not reaffirm that he recognizes W. as acting Vicar of Jesus Christ: then the duplicity (8) which Archbishop Lefebvre systematically implements DEMANDS fear for the worst of compromises. Such “Consecrations” would be ordered, satanically and masterfully, to better ensure the “ralliement” (adhesion) (9) of the “Traditional” phalanx to the official church.


10. Sodalitium: What are your thoughts on the “testimony of faith” necessarily required today both on the part of priests and the faithful?

Bishop des Lauriers: Testimony of Faith, necessarily required, on the part of priests and the faithful.

Always travelling, with his suitcase in hand, for the zeal for souls. The photo is from 1972

[I.] The duty of giving testimony. “Fideles Christi fidem aperte confiteri tenentur quoties eorum silentium, tergiversatio aut ratio agendi secumferret implicitam fidei negationem, contemptum religionis, iniuriam Dei vel scandalum proximi” [Canon 1325, § 1] [“Christ’s faithful are held to openly profess faith every time their silence, hesitation or behaviour would entail an implicit negation of faith, contempt for religion, affront to God, or scandal”].

This Canon merely spells out the severe warning by Jesus himself: “Indeed, if anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory and [in that] of the Father and His holy Angels” [Luke IX, 26]: “Whoever denies me before men, I will deny before my Father who is in Heaven” [Matthew X, 33]. To profess is inherent to the life of the Faith. It is a divine norm. Canon law specifies that silence, which is the fact of not testifying, can constitute a denial of the Faith.

That there is on earth a man who is the Vicar of Christ, to whom every faithful of Jesus Christ must be subjected, is a truth of Faith. Knowing WHO this man is, immediately conditions the exercise of Faith, and consequently constitutes a position before which EVERY believer is required to take a stand. It is a Divine law.

That there is, within the Church militant, a universal ordinary Magisterium that is INFALLIBLE, is a truth of Faith. Every faithful must profess it, and MUST DENOUNCE the error of those who deny it. It is a Divine law.

[II.] The exercise of Testifying.

There is a Testimony of Faith, through works, both through the work of life and through words, which must be permanent; this is the substance without which the most particular forms of this same Testimony are very likely to be in vain. “Let men see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven” [Matthew V, 16]. The current situation, however, requires insisting on the particular duty to testify defined in [I].

Regarding this, two things need to be clarified: they concern everyone, primarily priests, but also EVERY faithful.

First of all, the act of testifying must be carried out according to the measure that Wisdom and prudence dictate. Denouncing heresy, denouncing the “facilism” that leads to it, is NECESSARY to safeguard Life: but this denunciation, which is negative, by its nature does not give Life. It is therefore not appropriate for this indispensable task to become the main, nor the only object of Sunday catecheses [or homilies], or of the conversations exchanged among the faithful attached to Tradition. “Charitas non gaudet super iniquitate, congaudet autem Veritati” [I Cor. XIII, 6].  The announcement and distribution of the revealed Truth support, and they alone fruitfully, the rigorous duty of “Witnessing”. “Intus reformari”: here is the renunciation which is costly, and which gives range to the criticism of others.

Secondarily, and as a counterpart, we must not exempt ourselves from the rigorous duty to testify: “Fideles … aperte confiteri tenentur”. As I explained [I] it is a Divine law: which has value and scope EX SE, and not only on the part of the current Authority of the Church. It is therefore a crime, and in itself an extremely serious sin, that the priests of Écône commit, inciting the faithful not to consider the question of the Pope [although it immediately affects the Faith], subsequently affixing the same faithful in their fatal blindness through the hateful teaching of a heresy. Archbishop Lefebvre, and the Écônians, to justify their behavior, attach the fallacious pretext: “Do not disturb the faithful”. Certainly this is convenient as regards the way to proceed step by step with respect; but to refuse by a [false] principle to shed Light: it is the sin against the Holy Ghost, a sin that cannot be forgiven [Matthew XXII, 31]. After all, Jesus never set out “not to disturb”. He, “the Truth” [John XIV, 6], wanted FIRST OF ALL to “bear witness to the truth” [John XVIII, 37]. He “shouted out” the Truth [John VII, 37], “without showing favoritism” [Mark XII, 14]; as Saint Peter himself [Acts X, 34] and Saint Paul [Romans II, 11] did. It follows, ineluctably, that Jesus, [in the name of Truth] “came to separate, [to make] man have as enemies those of his own house” [Matthew X, 35-36]. Jesus, far from aiming to “not disturb” the “novice” disciples whose motivation would be impure, rebukes this impurity [John VI, 26]; and even invites the Twelve to abandon him [John VI, 67]. Saint Peter replies: “Lord, and to whom shall we go? You alone have words of eternal Life” [John VI, 68]. Saint Peter thus spontaneously proves that Jesus founded his Church: on the Truth. It is they who are founders of sects who, to recruit followers, systematically use the slogan: “do not disturb”. Do not disturb either false tranquility or the play of passions. Then you [Satan through you] will have millions and millions of partisans. All this is a grave sin against the Testimony of the Most Holy Faith.


11. Sodalitium: How can we envisage the further unfolding of this appalling crisis?

Bishop des Lauriers: What is the further development, solution…of the “crisis”: that is, of the formal vacancy of the Apostolic See?

The phrase “crisis of the Church” is commonly referred to as the state of deprivation in which the militant Church finds itself [that is, the Mystical Body of Christ subsisting on earth, which is not the “official Church” as such]. This state of deprivation has a “per accidens” cause, through removal of its proper cause. This “per accidens” cause is the formal vacancy of the Apostolic See, at least from December 7, 1965.

How does this vacancy end? The normal, canonical process is well known. What remains of Authority in the militant Church, if the Pope falls into heresy or schism, is the moral person [designated below with M] who constitutes the hierarchical group of residential Bishops who [therefore!] integrally profess the Catholic Faith. This moral person M must address an injunction to the “pope” [ex-Pope] and must convene the Conclave; this ensures, AT LEAST POTENTIALLY, the Apostolic Succession, considering it from the FORMALITER point of view. [This is what happens when the Pope dies: in particular when the Conclave, duly convened, must be postponed for extrinsic causes]. If the “pope” persists in his error, he is ipso facto outside the Church, and he is no longer pope in any sense, not even materialiter. If the “pope” abjures his error, it is up to the Conclave to “decide” the alternative: either this repentant “pope” returns formaliter Pope; or, in accordance with the bull of Paul IV, this “pope” has alienated in himself, due to heresy, the ability to become Pope formaliter which had been given him, BEFORE THE CHURCH, by the fact of being regularly elected by a valid Conclave. The Church never judges the Pope. But it is up to the Church [Conclave convened by M] to decide whether, YES or NO, there exists in the repentant “pope” a “canonical revival” of the ecclesial aptitude to be Pope. Thus the Church judges in the “pope” only that which, in the latter, formally belongs to the Church.

This canonical process evidently can take place ONLY IF the moral person M is a reality. Now, currently, the only Bishops of whom we are sure they are part of the Church militant [Mystical Body of Christ, subsisting on earth] are those who “proceed” from Archbishop Ngo Dinh Thuc [see 9 II]: in fact, these are unanimous (10) [unlike Archbishop Lefebvre and Bishop de Castro Mayer] in affirming the at least formal vacancy of the Apostolic See. However, my personal opinion is: that, first of all, the whole of the “Thuc-Bishops” cannot be hierarchised either in law or in fact [!]; that, secondarily, this totality, expressly ordered to the MISSIO, and extraneous to the SESSIO, is metaphysically and juridically UNABLE to constitute the moral person M. I have designated the contrary opinion and tendency, which I absolutely reject, under the name of conclavism.

In the absence of M, there is no “canonical” solution! Jesus alone will put the Church back in ORDER, in and with the Triumph of His Mother. It will then be clear to everyone that salvation will have come from Above.


12. Sodalitium: What do you think of the group of Italian priests and seminarians who formed the “Istituto Mater Boni Consilii”?

Bishop des Lauriers: Istituto Mater Boni Consilii.

I am happy to express my supernatural wishes and my fervent sympathy to this Institute and its members. I can only approve the purpose of the Institute, given that it involves spreading among the faithful what I precisely believe to be the truth, the essential parts of which have been recalled above.

July 16, 1987: Bishop Guérard des Lauriers in Orio (near Turin), the first location of IMBC’s «Saint Peter Martyr» seminary, with the priests and seminarians

Most of all, I appreciate, and I thank God for the fact that the Priests of the Institute have the loyalty and courage to explain the truth to EVERYONE, without preference. “The poor are evangelized” [Matthew XI, 5]. This is the final sign that Jesus himself gives to John, whose disciples ask Jesus: “Are you the one who comes or must we wait for another” [Matthew XI, 2]. The crucial sign that the Institute comes from Jesus is that it respects the humble. “To be obsequious”, “to not to disturb them”, basically amounts to despising them as if I alone were sufficiently penetrating to understand every thing and strong enough to carry it: it is equivalent to caring about their suffrage in itself, rather than about their salvation through the truth [“Veritas liberavit vos” (John, VIII, 32), Veritas! non mendacium!] – Some profess “in principle” the truth concerning the situation of the Church. But they try to hide this “profession of Faith”: and they ostensibly separate themselves from those who clearly proclaim it… “in season, out of season” [II Timothy IV, 2]. The “Mater Boni Consilii” Institute was conceived and born in the Charity of Truth. Dominus incipit. Ipse perficiat.



1) The photocopy of this document has been reproduced in the “Sous la Banniere” magazine, No. 9, January-February 1987; p. 10 (by the: Editions Sainte Jeanne d’Arc).

2) In this regard, it is advisable to respond to an objection attached by Archbishop Lefebvre and those who follow him. They claim that: “to refuse to mention W. at the Te igitur” is, they say, “to refuse to pray for the Pope”. Not at all. On the contrary, it is EMINENTLY convenient to pray for W. as a private person, to pray for him AND FOR HIS CONVERSION, in the Memento of the living. However it is obviously impossible to pray for a person INASMUCH HE WOULD ASSUME the function of being the Vicar of Jesus Christ, while this person performs acts which ABSOLUTELY suspend the exercise of this function.

3) Bishop des Lauriers maintains that, in this matter, he is only expressing his opinion, and admits the right of the other opinion, according to which it is unlawful even for pastoral reasons (the desire for the Sacraments) to attend and communicate at an “una cum” Mass.

4) Archbishop Thuc thus had: pensions and gifts to use for the succor of Vietnamese refugees. Ref. my article on BOC (abbreviation for the “Bulletin de l’Occident Chretien”) No. 103 – (B.P. 112.92313 Sevres-Cedex).

5) This heresy, widespread in all the chapels and schools run by “Ecône”, is the following: “The universal ordinary Magisterium of the Church is NOT infallible”. Now, the Truth, held by Tradition and confirmed by Vatican I, is that the UNIVERSAL ORDINARY MAGISTERIUM IS INFALLIBLE. See M.-L. Guérard des Lauriers, “De Vatican II à Wojtyla” in “Sous la Bannière”, supplement to No. 8 [Saint Jeanne d’Arc Editions. les Guillots: 18260 Villegenon].

6) I examined this question in the article “Consecrate Bishops?” [Sous la Bannière. Supplement to No. 3. January-February 1986].

7) “L’Eglise militant au temps de Mgr Wojtyla” (BOC No. 101, June 1985, pp. 12-24, in particular pp 18-19).

8) The last episode [to date!] of this satanic duplicity is the “hit of December 8, 1986”. Read in its entirety intra muros, in the Priories where it was necessary to convince hesitant Seminarians [and those resolved to leave Ecône] to renew their promises on December 8th, the “Declaration” of Archbishop Lefebvre [and de Castro Mayer] WAS NOT READ PUBLICLY in its entirety, at least in certain Priories. St. Nicholas Priory in particular: the main part, which disavows Vatican II and W. had been omitted. Thus the “hard” seminarians remained; and the faithful continued to be deceived.

9) And this even Archbishop Lefebvre persists not to see it – I explained it in the article cited in Footnote 6.

10) Some of them are still shy, and even reticent, when it comes to PUBLICLY proclaim what they now say [FINALLY!] privately.

Bishop Guérard des Lauriers’ episcopal coat