Bishop Bernard Fellay on the
Rosary Crusade and Doctrinal Talks
20,000,000 Rosaries offered to Holy Father
By Brian Mershon
REMNANT COLUMNIST, South
Bishop Bernard Fellay,
SSPX, greets the Holy Father
Houston, Texas—Superior General
Bishop Bernard Fellay of the Society of St. Pius X recently
spoke to The Remnant in an exclusive interview
following the completion of their
third Rosary crusade for the Holy Father on March 25,
2010. Despite Cardinal Kasper’s most recent obvious attempt
“poison the well” and upend the ongoing discussions with
the Society’s theologians and representatives of the Holy
See (talks in which, it should be noted, he has no role
whatsoever), the Holy Father will visit Fatima this week and
Our Blessed Mother cannot be circumvented
when it comes to answering prayers as she so wills as the
mediatrix of all graces. Let us pray, then, that the Holy
Father’s message at Fatima this week will be an answer to
the most recent rosary crusade for the intention of the
consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Hear of Mary and
for the Triumph of her Immaculate Heart. Five and half
million rosaries from the U.S. and a total of 19,142,065
rosaries by Traditionalist Catholics worldwide have been
offered for this intention. We thank His Excellency most
sincerely for taking time away from his busy schedule to
answer a few questions.
Your Excellency, what is your
reaction to the Society’s request for 12 million rosaries
with a result of more than 19 million actually being
First of all, I am very, very happy to see such enthusiasm
and such an answer to our call. I’m certain that this number
isn’t only from the Society’s faithful; I’m sure that many
many others have joined for whom we don’t have the total
figures. That’s the first thing.
Secondly, I’m pleased with the enthusiasm for
understanding the importance of this matter. This subject
matter is very, very important.
The two other rosary crusades
resulted in rather quick and historic responses—the freeing
of the Traditional Latin Mass to all priests everywhere in
the world, and the dissolving of the excommunications of the
Society bishops, which in turn led to the commencement of
doctrinal talks with the Holy See. Do you anticipate a
similarly dramatic response to this third rosary crusade?
Bishop Fellay: I
leave it to be totally in the hands of God and the Blessed
Virgin Mary. But, probably not. One never knows, but I would
be very surprised if the Pope consecrated Russia. It would
be a great, great surprise. But, on the other hand, we have
already been surprised before, so I would not be amazed if
it were to happen so quickly. This time what we’re asking
for is so important and so big and it is so directly
involved in all the events of the history of our times.
Ever since Pope Benedict was
elected and the new Russian Orthodox Patriarch was chosen,
there has been an obvious thaw in relations, and for the
better, I believe. The Russian Orthodox Patriarch even
published a book of the Pope’s writings to be disseminated
to his lay faithful! How do you read this? Is this related
to the Third Secret of Fatima as well?
Bishop Fellay: I personally believe there is
something on the move in Russia. There definitely does seem
to be something moving in Russia. There is something in the
air. How far and how deep? I do not know. But, there are
many things that show there is a revival of religion in
Has the Society already sent the
bouquet of rosaries?
Bishop Fellay: It
is going to happen [soon].
What is the Society’s attitude on
the worldwide media attacks on the Holy Father and the
Bishop Fellay: I
think we have there a good demonstration that the Church
really does still have enemies. And these enemies have real
names. You can see that through this ongoing campaign. It is
very revealing. On the one hand, we have the old-guard U.S.
enemies and, on the other hand, we have the leftists from
Europe both working together.
Do you think these attacks are related to the chastisements
foretold by Sister Lucia in the Third Secret?
Bishop Fellay: It’s
too difficult to say. But if there is one quote from Fatima
that I would quote that applies—it is this: “The Pope will
suffer a lot. The Pope will suffer a lot.” And you have it
The ongoing doctrinal talks with
the Holy See are occurring outside the media spotlight for
obvious reasons. What do you expect to happen as a result of
these? What has to happen in the doctrinal talks for the
Society to agree to a canonical structure? Are the talks
even related to a possible canonical solution?
Bishop Fellay: It’s
impossible to say. Absolutely impossible. It depends upon
too many factors right now. I don’t have the answer.
Some critics say that the
Society’s rejection of a canonical or practical solution is
a sign of obstinacy or ill will. How do you answer that?
Bishop Fellay: It
is very simple. The Holy See has agreed that the doctrinal
talks should happen, so that should answer the questions
without putting the burden on me. Besides that, it is very
clear that whatever practical solution that would happen
without a sound doctrinal foundation would lead directly to
disaster. We don’t want that. We want and need the security
of a sound solution on the level of doctrine to go ahead. So
to pretend there is something definitive prior to engaging
in the doctrinal talks…
We have all these previous examples in front
of us—the Fraternity of St. Peter, the Institute of Christ
the King and all of the others are totally blocked on the
level of doctrine because they first accepted the practical
Do you believe the Pope personally
sincerely desires a canonical solution with the Society of
St. Pius X?
Bishop Fellay: Yes,
I think so. Yes, I do. I think the Pope desires this. He
wants the Church to be better and he wants to complete the
quest of the consecration of bishops with the Society.
You have mentioned in previous
interviews that the Society has positive acquaintances or
even friends as bishops, cardinals—and even in the Roman
curia. What advice do they give you as these doctrinal talks
Nothing at all. They are very discreet right now. I think
the discussions we’re having are very good and are happening
at a very discreet level. The next talks are taking place in
Are you aware of any group of
priests, lay faithful or dioceses in the recent history of
the Church who have offered such large bouquets of rosaries
to the Holy Father as the Society has now done thrice?
Bishop Fellay: Not
to my knowledge. It might have happened, but I don’t have
any reference. But it is obvious that such a crusade is
something unique. I believe that Fr. Gruner is now going to
do the same thing.
What is your advice to Catholics
who desire to open a chapel in their area? Is the Society
putting on the breaks where expanding chapel locations is
concerned, due to the doctrinal talks?
First, the lay faithful should contact us and then we try to
do something for them. Right now, we have so many requests
that we can hardly fulfill them. This year, we have a good
year for ordinations, but even so we are too short of
priests [to fulfill all the requests]. We can hardly answer
all the requests. But we continue our normal life as
before. It would be totally counterproductive to think we
would have to stop any increase in our life because of talks
with Rome. It should be quite the contrary.
Your Excellency, Do you have any
Prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary have to continue. Some
might think that since we achieved our rosary crusade, now
everything is fine. No. No. No. It is now very clear that
we are engaged in a battle with the real enemies of the
Church. So Catholics, be ready! Gain the victory with the
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Praise God, and let's all pray even more rosaries that something really dramatic
does happen in Portugal this week. J. Grant, Denver
Great interview! Such a positive happening. I only wish His
Excellency would explain what he means by the Fraternity of St. Peter and the
Institute of Christ the King being blocked when it comes to doctrine. Down here
in the Bible belt the Fraternity is setting up oases of doctrinal and liturgical
sanity that are Catholic lifelines for us. Perhaps Mr. Mershon could ask about
this in a future interview. God bless all the true priests and God bless Bishop
Fellay. Mark Schmidt, Atlanta
Holy Father is offering a Mass in Lisbon at this very moment that is so
beautiful I can't help but feel this Rosary Crusade is already moving his heart.
Theresa Morris, St. Paul
Dear Editor: The
interview you have published is a wonderful encouragement for long-suffering
Traditional Catholics scattered throughout the World. The SSPX has done a
Mighty Job to galvanise the Remnant of the Church into a United action which
will surely bring positive results. By any measure 19.1 million Rosaries is
an Extraordinary result. The Blessed Virgin Mary should be extremely
pleased with the efforts of the SSPX and their Traditional Catholic
Let us pray even more fervently that the Pope will respond to
the Grace that we expect he will soon receive and thereby have the Courage
to accomplish the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in
Union with the Catholic Bishops of the World. Thank you Editor for
publishing this very welcome interview.
Laurie Myers, Sydney, Australia
I pray every day Rosaries and other prayers
that Pope Benedict and all the bishops of the world will FINALLY do
the right thing and consecrate Russia to the
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Our Mother and Queen. I don’t understand
how man can disobey Almighty God’s request (command) for so long. I
urge all Catholics and Christians to pray the Rosary always for this
intention and for the Vatican to finally reveal the entire and true
third secret of Fatima. The Triumph of Mary’s Immaculate Heart will
come but let us continue to fight against the enemies of the church
so that Almighty God will answer our prayers and bring this triumph
about sooner. I pray it will be done when His Holiness Pope Benedict
visits Fatima on May 13. Can you just imagine the glory this
magnificent act of obedience to Almighty God would bring. Let us
never cease praying and offering our Rosaries for this intention.
Joe R, Toronto, ON
Dear Editor, While not
affiliated with the SSPX, I chose to join their Rosary crusade, but
have no idea how to pass on to them my tally.
I am also ignorant on how to count the Rosaries. I believe the
tally is counting 5-decade rosaries, such that a full 15 decades
would amount to 3 Rosaries.
I have offered 2,190 5-decade Rosaries to this most important of
all causes from May 1, 2009 to today May 13 2010. They were probably
not terribly effective given my terribly sinful nature but I
certainly hope that Our Lady counts them for something. I would
appreciate if you could pass my tally to the SSPX or Fr Gruner, the
latter having been a true inspiration in cultivating my devotion to
Our Lady of Fatima over the past decade. I just don't know how to
get this number into their tally and if they will be presenting a
bouquet to Pope Benedict XVI I would very much like for this to be
included in that bouquet for the Holy Father.
I cannot fathom anything more important for the Pope, the Church,
the World and individual families and souls than this Consecration.
May God be pleased to move the Holy Father to command nothing short
of the collegial consecration of Russia to Our Lady's Immaculate
Heart in 2010! Joseph DB, Toronto, Canada
converted from a feminist lifestyle and saved from hell by Our Lady
of the Rosary of Fatima beginning in Sept. '95. Step by step, Our
Lady has shown me about the true faith and all is the old ways,
the traditional church. I have been praying for the proper
consecration for years now. In 2005 I grew weary, just worn-out, of
praying for the Pope and Bishops and one night I said what's the
use, etc. (as well as a few other unprintable things). But She very
sweetly & patiently showed me I must keep praying the Rosary for the
Fatima Intentions & never never compromise with the devil and his
people & HOW SHE HAS BEEN ABANDONED BY SO MANY CATHOLICS &
RELIGIOUS AND WE ALL MUST PRAY VERY MUCH FOR THE HOLY FATHER. HE
NEEDS OUR HELP. Since I learned about SSPX, I'm uniting my Rosaries
with yours. I love beautiful Mary, our Mother so much; She is the
true liberator of women. God bless you all.
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