Bishop Fellay: A troubling interview
Wow. Count me as stunned. If it is not an outright heresy to say that Christ uses the Protestant sects as “means of salvation” (Unitatis Redintegration – 3) then nothing is.
Even so, the more troubling aspect of Bishop Fellay’s response concerns the suggestion that the Council simply “removed barriers against error;” as opposed to positively proposing error.
In fact, the Decree on Ecumenism and the preposterous idea that the Protestant sects are “means of salvation” is one of the specific examples he cited in so accusing the Council. -Louie Verrecchio 1
Lionel: For me UR 3 does not refer to known people in the Protestant sects who are saved by their religions or who are saved at all.This is obvious at the practical level.We cannot know of any non Catholic saved outside the Catholic Church.Only God can see and know who is saved.So if there was an exception it would only be known to God.Only God can see or know of someone saved outside the Church and was exception to the ordinary means of salvation, which is faith and baptism in the Catholic Church.We cannot say that a particular Protestant today, outside the Church, will be saved. This is something only God can know.
So UR 3 is referring to something hoped for with good will, the salvation of other Christians. It is also a reference to a hypothetical person. This is important to note. Since a hypothetical case is not an explicit example, in the present times, of salvation outside the Church. There are no exceptions to the dogma EENS mentioned in UR 3 for me.
For me hypothetical cases are just hypothetical and I call this interpretation Feeneyism.
When hypothetical cases are assumed to be non hypothetical and real exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus(EENS) I call it Cushingism.
Louie Verrecchio chooses to interpret this passage with Cushingism. So there is a rupture with the traditional teaching on salvation. For him UR 3 is an example of known salvation outside the Church.So the dogma outside the Church there is no salvation is made obsolete for him.This is heresy. He is correct.
This is the way the liberals interpret Vatican Council II today and accept the conclusion which is a rupture with Tradition. They use Cushingism to reach this end.
The traditionalists including Bishop Bernard Fellay also interpret Vatican Council II with Cushingism and then they blame the Council.
It is true that the reasoning of the Council Fathers at Vatican Council II was Cushingite, just as the Letter of the Holy Office 1949 was also Cushingite.This accounts for the original error in Vatican Council II.
With Cushingism the Council would be violating the Principle of Non Contradiction by suggesting that we can know of people saved outside the Church, who are in Heaven and would also be visible on earth.They would also have to be on earth or be seen on earth for them to be exceptions to EENS.
But this same text in the Council can also be interpreted with Feeneyism and the dogma EENS would not be contradicted.
So we cannot place the fault simply on Vatican Council II when the Council is being interpreted only with Cushingism.
We have to note that the Cushingite passages in Vatican Council II (UR 3 etc), in themselves, are not objective exceptions to the orthodox, Feeneyite passages. Since they are references to people unknown to us, hypothetical and theoretical cases.
Neither are they objective exceptions to the dogma EENS, defined by three Church Councils.
So in spite of the mistake made in Vatican Council II, a philosophical and theological mistake, we can interpret the Cushingite passages as referring to only hypothetical cases, and they are as such, they cannot be anything else.So they are not exceptions to the past exclusivist ecclesiology of the Church or the Syllabus of Errors ( ecumenism of return etc).There is no heresy here.