Lefebvre schismatics could get similar status to Opus Dei
Reports indicate that the Vatican is preparing to welcome the excommunicated members of the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebre's Society of St Pius X back into the Church, with the status of a personal prelature.
Bishop Camil Perl, secretary of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei' confirmed to the Italian ANSA agency that talks are being held between the Vatican and the Lefebrites. The Holy Father has entrusted the Commission with the faciliation of the return to full communion with Rome of members of Lefebre's Society of St Pius X.
The rupture took place in 1988, when Lefebvre ordained four bishops without papal approval. The French archbishop had rejected the Vatican II's liturgical reform, and the legitimacy of interreligious dialogue. In 1986 he denounced John Paul's visit to Rome's synagogue as a scandal 'without measure or precedent'. Bishop Lefebvre died in 1991.
Bishop Perl said that Cardinal Castrillón, Prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy, "started a series of talks some time ago with Don Bernard Falley, who leads the international Society of St. Pius X".
Last Wednesday, the Spanish newspaper La Razón reported that "the Vatican is studying [the possibility] of giving the Lefebvrites a personal prelature". It said the followers of the excommunicated bishop "are prepared to return to the heart of the Catholic Church if they are allowed to celebrate Mass in Latin and the excommunications are lifted".
Currently, Opus Dei is the only organisation in the Church to hold the status of personal prelature.