My Brothers in Christ and My Friends,
With great sorrow I read today that you are now "considered
perfectly inserted in the Holy Roman Catholic Apostolic Church."
I never knew you left. During those memorable days when I visited
you in 1991 while doing research for my book on your great and honored
Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer, I had the privilege of witnessing
the Catholic life of your diocese, the most perfect embodiment of
the Catholic life in a contemporary setting which I have ever witnessed
and so much more than I could ever imagine. What a blessing you
have been granted! What extraordinary graces you have received,
undoubtedly through the prayers and sacrifices and work of the unique
Bishop who tended the flock of Campos as shepherd for so many decades.
In what way were you not then Catholic? In what way were you separated
from the Church?
Your announcement that the Holy Father has signed a "letter
of entrance," welcoming you "in full ecclesial communion"
along with "the Catholic faithful (you) assist" suggests
that there had been some separation with Rome, that you were in
fact in some sort of schism. Had not the Catholic Faith been handed
down intact and in perfect fullness from Our Lord Jesus Christ through
His Apostles and through the Bishops of His Church until it came
to be passed throughout the Diocese of Campos in our time by the
fully Catholic Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer? What did he teach
you which was not Catholic? Where did he lead you that left you
separated from Rome and thus needing to "return"?
The sad fact is clear, even though the details are not yet fully
revealed. You have signed an agreement with Modernist Rome and thereby
turned your back on the great legacy of your great and beloved Bishop
who left you in April of 1991, left you because God called him home,
left you secure and Catholic and well provided for. His legacy has
now been compromised through the compromise which must have been
made with the current power players in Modernist and Progressive
Rome, distinct and separate itself from Eternal Rome. To affect
a compromise, one must assume leaving ones position and moving
toward a middle ground. The position you must leave is the fullness
of the Tradition of the Catholic Faith; the new position you must
reach is closer to the outskirts of the New Rome, the Rome of bureaucrats
and ambiguous talk and ecumenism and collegiality and religious
liberty, all the temptations and errors against which your good
pastor so courageously and so comprehensively warned and instructed
Alexander Solzhenitsyn in his memorable and insightful address
at the Harvard commencement ceremonies in 1978 stated that "a
decline in courage may be the most striking feature which an outsider
observer notices in the West in our days." For many years the
name of the Diocese of Campos has brought to Catholic souls battling
error and decay in their own parishes, the clear and resounding
call to Catholic courage. In our apostate times, perseverance becomes
an act of courage. The colossal moral and spiritual stature of the
small human man who was your Bishop stood as a model for Catholic
courage. Do you now cut his memory and legacy down to merely human
size? Will the name of Campos no longer loudly ring with courage
but echo distantly with compromise?
Who can doubt your discomfort or not sympathize with the loneliness
you must have felt over the years? A small group of priests, organized
together as the Priestly Society of Saint Jean Marie Vianney, carrying
on the work of Mother Church in isolation, unnoticed, ignored, except
when vilified by the voices of those who long ago made their compromises.
But what could be more indicative of your true role as alter Christi
if not your work in loneliness and sorrow, with those mocking and
derisive voices assailing you? To imagine yourselves now "inserted
in the Holy Roman Catholic Apostolic Church" is no solution.
You may have a few moments in bonhomie with red and scarlet and
purple in the cool marble palaces of the Eternal City, but will
Tradition continue in the Diocese of Campos after the compromising
and celebrating? How have all other traditional groups fared once
they have put themselves under the sway of Modernist Rome? I will
not give you the litany of loss and change for you are already aware
of it; I will just ask you where is the Traditional Bishop promised
to the Fraternity of Saint Peter fourteen years ago? Are the prelates
in Modernist Rome to be trusted? Will they deliver to you on the
promises they have made? I quote the wise Solzhenitsyn again, "Should
one point out that from ancient times decline in courage has been
considered the beginning of the end?"
You have announced that in a solemn ceremony to be held in the
Cathedral of the Most Holy Savior by His Eminence, Cardinal Msgr.
Dario Castrillon, Prefect of the Holy Congregation for the Clergy,
in the name of the Holy Father, the Pope, on the 18th January, there
will be a reading of documents and the singing of the "Te Deum."
The 18th of January also begins the "Week of Prayer for Christian
Unity" decreed by Rome which will culminate in the Day of Prayer
for Peace in Assisi on January 24th, the second such ecumenical
outrage in recent years, a kind of gathering condemned, as you well
know, by earlier popes. Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer in a joint
statement with Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre spoke with the voice of
Roman Catholic Tradition in condemning the gathering of religions
at Assisi in October of 1987 [sic; the event actually occurred in
1986; wb's], the first such outrageous ecumenical prayer venture.
Have you forgotten his wise and proscriptive words? Will you now
join your hands in prayer with Modernist Rome as it openly violates
the First Commandment of God and prays with Lutherans and Anglicans
and Muslims and Deists and animists in defiance of Catholic Tradition
and then will you pretend still to be Traditionalists? Have you
forgotten your own words when in your public Profession of Faith
in 1982 you rejected "the ecumenism that makes the Faith grow
cold and makes us forget our Catholic identity, seeking to negate
the antagonism between light and darkness, between Christ and Belial..."
You may protest that you will maintain Traditionalism in your
diocese, that you will still celebrate the Mass of All Time and
teach the old catechisms and carry on in the Traditional ways. But
do you not understand that in compromising you accept an absurd
contradiction, an illogical proposition that any sane mind must
condemn that Mother Church in Her Divine Authority can teach
contradictory ideas at different times and pretend they are both
true. How can your Traditionalism co-exist with Modernism? How can
the Mass of All Time be equivalent with the newfangled human contrivance?
How can Catholics be forbidden from ecumenical prayer at one time
and then encouraged in such actions at a later time? As Hamlet says,
when staring at the skull of Yorick, the "gorge rises at it."
Such a stark and deadly affront to reason is horrifying. Are you
now willing to play this absurd Modernist game with Modernist Rome?
Many weary and troubled Catholics will feel the weight of your decision.
Already the remarks are circulating that you have "sold out"
and "caved in" and "given up". The truth is
you have abandoned reason. May I remind you of the words of a prayer
you have often prayed? "...Sicut erat in principio et nunc
et semper et in saecula saeculorum..." As it was in the beginning
is now and ever shall be, world without end.
In his courageous statement of June 30, 1988, in Econe, on the
occasion of the consecration of Traditional Bishops by Archbishop
Marcel Lefebvre, your courageous Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer
in his message of support and unity spoke the following words: "It
is sorrowful to see the lamentable blindness of so many confreres
in the Episcopacy and the priesthood, who do not see, or who do
not wish to see, the present crisis in order to be faithful to the
mission which God has confided to us, to resist the modernism at
You no longer "wish to see the present crisis"; you
no longer wish "to resist the modernism at present ruling."
By your action of compromise with the "modernism at present
ruling," you have increased the sorrow of your great Bishop;
you have increased the sorrow of your devoted friends. Our Lord
in His agony in the garden certainly suffered from the hatred of
His enemies, but such suffering was nothing compared to the certain
knowledge that He would be betrayed and denied by His friends and
Be assured of my prayers.
David Allen White