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   Letter to friends and benefactors #17

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Monsignor Marcel Lefebvre, Founder and Superior General of the FSSPX
October 1979


Support of priests and faithful for Tradition growing rapidly. New seminary in the United States at Ridgefield, CT. New central headquarters for the SSPX to be organized soon.

Dear Friends and Benefactors,

am writing this seventeenth letter to you from Montalenghe, the new priory and retreat house in Northern Italy, twenty kilometers from Turin.


This is the first retreat given at this house and those participating are the new aspirants for the Seminary at Ecône, twenty-seven of the thirty who are beginning their studies at the seminary this year; and for the seventy who are entering our four major seminaries. Speaking of this, I want to add that we have acquired a major seminary in the United States at Ridgefield, Connecticut. The former seminary at Armada will become a priory to serve the Detroit area.

The support of priests and the faithful to tradition grows rapidly. The 50th Jubilee ceremony in Paris was visible testimony of this. I again wish to thank those who sent gifts and especially for their prayers and sacrifices which contributed to this Mass of the action of grace.

Because we are surrounded by the ruins caused by the corruption of minds and hearts, the evidence of the vitality of the Church of all time takes on a priceless value. We are permitted to hope that we can restore destroyed altars, that we can offer again the true Sacrifice of the Mass.

By contrast, when one lives with an ecumenical Eucharist, democratic and liberal, the auto-destruction continues, despite all the calls to order, the statements most worthy of respect and the most spectacular of ceremonies.

“Nisi Dominus aedificaverit domum in vanum laboraverunt qui aedificant eam – If the Lord does not construct the building, the builders work in vain.” Therefore, the altar of sacrifice of propitiation, the heritage of the new and eternal testament; the Body and Blood of Jesus are the foundation stone of the Church from whence gush the waters of eternal life.

Let us keep confidence in God, in Jesus and Mary, who will obtain that the authorities of the Church will restore the altars. While awaiting that day, let us pray and multiply the altars and the priests for the celebration of the Holy Mass where the Sacred Victim offers Himself, Ardent Furnace of Love, for the redemption of our sins.

This is the goal of the Priestly Fraternity of the Society of St. Pius X which already numbers 200 members.

You have already noted that the number of priories grows year by year. This is why it has appeared to me urgent to organize central headquarters for the Society by having a General House where the Secretary General and the General Bursar (Treasurer) will establish the headquarters and where all correspondence for the Superior General will be sent. This action will place us more in conformity with Canon Law, the districts being the foundation of future provinces.

You may also note that we have divided the United States into two districts, and that the house of Brussels is now open. This has been desirable for several years. The magazine Fideliter from the French District will give you more information about priories and schools, as other bulletins and publications have in the past.

Young aspirants to the priesthood, or to the religious life as brothers or auxiliaries of the priestly apostolate, should contact the priories where they can obtain all the useful information they need pertaining to their vocation, either in the Fraternity, or in the numerous active or contemplative religious houses which are united the same faith and the same hope.

We pray that Mary, the Mother of Jesus, whose feast of Divine Motherhood we celebrate today, become always more our Mother for our identification with Jesus, her Son.

We pray that St. Joseph, who will return your generosity a hundredfold, will help us for the development of our work which gives to the world the testimony it has so much need of today: that of saintly priests.

Affectionately united with in you in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary,

† Marcel Lefebvre
Feast of the Maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
11 October 1979

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