The only condition I see as potentially problematic for them is #3:
3. A commitment to avoid the pretense of a Magisterium superior to the Holy Father and to not put forward the Fraternity [SSPX] in opposition to the Church.
I think the Vatican made these conditions ambiguous to help an agreement take place. But the SSPX hates ambiguity and will want to define things. If so why not define the statement in your response and then agree to it. Put the ball in Rome's court.
I don't see any problem with that. The fact that the SSPX feels it has a free rein and keeps establishing church communities wherever they please, which in essence they are acting like they were the Pope. If that isn't a semblance of a superior Magisterium or running a parallel Church, I don't know what is.
In response to this I would start by stating we accept the authentic magisterium of the Pope in all things that accord with Tradition. Since the Pope thinks everything he is saying is in accord with Tradition it shouldn't be a problem.
That is exactly what I have been saying all along in these threads. We keep harping about the ills and wrongs wrought by the Pope, as if these would affect the indefectibility and infallability of the Church. Whatever the Pope does he is answerable to God and will be judged accordingly. and it would be a harsh judgment. The problem we all have, without exception, is that we have appointed ourselves judges of the Pope. The pope is guaranteed infallability only in matters of faith and morals when speaking from the Chair
. We keep forgetting that. By our actions, thoughts and criticisms, we are already judged. Keep that in mind, especially all of you who snicker and drool with cynicism every time this Pope does this or that.
The point is, the SSPX can agree to these things in principle and wiggle around with their understanding.
Rome is not looking to mess over the SSPX here. I think Benedict wants them IN, and wants the bare minimum from them.
I think the SSPX risks slowly fading into irrelevancy if they don't take the offer and then work as a force for change in the Church. The Pope wants Trad allies in the Church.
This is a huge crossroads in Church history. I pray it turns out for the best!
We're in complete agreement, Stevus. It is PRIDE that keeps the SSPX from accepting what is offered and proffered. We will not serve! That ancient declarative statement keeps coming back as echoes even in our age. Pride was and will always be the downfall of whoever possesses it.
We only ask the SSPX to put aside what they believe makes them the superior Catholic, accept the invitation, come into the den of lions, tame them, and then work with other traditional Catholics (and forget you are the
only Catholic), put aside differences, stop criticizing those who are not with you in spirit, and work for the restoration and the salvation of souls. God expects that from you -- especially YOU (the four bishops).
If not, the schism is a done deal.