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Sign petition to support Franciscans of the Immaculate December 11, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Latin Mass, Liturgy, Papa, persecution, scandals, self-serving, the return.

The highly respected Italian Catholic historian Dr. Roberto de Mattei has started a petition seeking to remove Fr. Fidenzio Volpi, OFM Cap, from his leadership of the “shattered” Franciscans of the Immaculate.  Recent revelations have indicated that Fr. Volpi is acting from a personal animus against the traditional practice of the Faith and especially the TLM, as well as taking very harsh, even unjust and autocratic steps against this poor, suffering order.

I stand back in shocked amazement at the long list of actions taken in this coup against what was a vibrant, growing, traditional order.  The message has been sent – NO orders outside the Ecclesia Dei groups will be permitted to embrace Tradition, and they sure as heck won’t be allowed to question the sainted council.

Some text from the petition, which I have already signed (thanks to Tancred for the text and translation):

We demand the resignation of Father Fidenzio Volpi from his job as political Commissioner of the Franciscans of the Immaculate. In the short period of just five months, Father Volpi has shattered the Order,  resulting in internal chaos and suffering,  externally causing scandal among the faithful, criticism in the media, and discomfort and astonishment in the ecclesiastical world. It does not matter to know whether Father Volpi is the author or only the executor of the destruction plan. One thing is certain though, if the plan is not stopped, the consequences will be devastating, and to prevent the calamity yet added to new disaster, Father Volpi must be dismissed.
According to the decree of last 11 July,  the Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculate was placed under provisional administration, and Father Volpi began with the help of a small band of subcommisars, among them Father Alfonso Bruno and Prof. Mario Castellano, to lay with his ax to the Order. He forbade the celebration of the Holy Mass and the Divine Office in the manner provided in the Motu proprio for the Extraordinary Form, he dismissed the whole Order leadership, starting with Father Stefano Maria Manelli, who since then is under house arrest, without then having been given to him the reasons why he dissmissed one by one the most loyal collaborators of Father Manelli and sent them every which way, personalities of intellectual and moral greatness, he transferred their duties to dissident brothers who lack  preparation and experience, he threattened and punished the brothers, who petitioned  to the Holy See and refused to withdraw them; and finally he closed the Order’s own seminary on 8 December 2013, during the Solemnity of the Order,  and suspended all priests and deaconal ordinations;  he imposed an interdict against all publications of religious publishing house Editrice Casa Mariana and forbade their distribution in  the Order churches and chapels supervised by the order; he expanded his personal war to the SFO [Tertiaries] and the laity, who are connected to the Order, by forbidding all the activities of MIM (Mission Immaculate Mediatrix) and TOFI (Third Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception); he threatened the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception, who adhere to the traditional Rite, to also have them put under provisional administration and withdrew the two female religious branches, the missionary branch of the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception and the contemplative branch of the Poor Clares of the Immaculate Conception from the spiritual care of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate Conception, and now finally, he has demanded of all Franciscans of the Immaculate a “Modernist Oath” to the Novus Ordo Missae and the Second Vatican Council…….
———–End Quote———–
WOW!  Without doubt, much of this repression and reprogramming has to do with the FFIs publishing books taking a critical look at Vatican II.
I’m starting to find the summer of 2012 rather a curious time, seeing as that is when the original complaint was lodged by the dissidents (we are told), and also when the chief public face of the dissidents shifted his location to Europe. I wonder if someone tipped them off that a papal resignation was coming.
You might consider signing the petition, even though it is in Italian. I had no problem figuring it out, it just asks for first name, last name, and then e-mail.
Even if you don’t sign the petition, pray for the FFIs!  They are really, really suffering right now!  And pray that the Franciscan Sisters stay independent!


1. TG - December 11, 2013

I signed the petition. It said thank you so I guess it went thru.

2. Rebecca Joan - December 11, 2013

I signed it. Thanks.

3. Lynne - December 11, 2013

Yup, I signed it too…

4. shari - December 12, 2013

Signed –

5. PJ - December 12, 2013

Signed it already, but thumbs up for getting the word out!!

6. Branch - December 12, 2013

I’ve read elsewhere that the reason for the actions taken against them is that some within the group tried to impose the TLM and to do away with the NO completely. Is that true? If so, I could understand the actions taken.

tantamergo - December 12, 2013

What happened is pretty clear. In their public ritual – that is, daily Masses open to the public, etc., the FFIs were going to remain bi-ritual. But the desire of the overwhelming majority of members was for the order to adopt strictly the traditional Liturgy for their private Office.

This is perfectly permissible under Summorum Pontificum. The founder and former Superior, Fr. Stefano Manelli, worked closely with Pope Benedict XVI to convert the FFIs from a regular, Novus Ordo type community to one that was focused primarily on the traditional Liturgy. Pope Benedict was supportive of this.

I kind of left a dangling clue in the post. Fr. Angelo Geiger has been, without question, the public face of the dissidents. He was not onboard with the changes. His idea of a “traditional” community is one that maybe offers the TLM 2 or 3 times a year. He went to Europe right around the time the original complaint was filed with Pope Benedict. This was in summer 2012. Nothing happened under Benedict, of course, but that, I think, was important cover for what the dissidents hoped would happen, which was that there would be a new pope soon and he would take a very different view of things. Within a few months of taking office, Pope Francis acted decisively, in a manner we have not seen since the late 60s/early 70s, against the FFIs.

The degree of changes being foisted on the FFIs is incredible. A “modernist” oath? Formal signed statements swearing fealty to Vatican II! And almost the total abrogation of the private practice of the traditional liturgy. This is truly disturbing.

A message, a very clear one, is being sent. No religious order not explicitly part of the indult/Ecclesia Dei groups will be allowed to transition to the traditional Liturgy. The growth of interest in the Traditional Liturgy is to be fought and contained. And more than anything, criticism, even mild, faithful criticism of Vatican II will not be tolerated. Engaging in such is a quick way to get your order sacked, its leadership removed by main force, and hundreds or thousands of spiritual lives thrown into utter turmoil.

This is an incredible story. There have been great attempts to keep it quiet. Were it not for a handful of Italian faithful attached to the FFIs, we would not know what was going on.

For an American audience, the appointment of Fr. Volpi as Apostolic Overseer is akin to putting Joan Chittister in charge of Mother Angelica’s nuns.

Think about that.

Branch - December 12, 2013

Thank you.

The point you make about it being permissible under Summorum Pontificum is the one I saw disputed.

7. Magdalen - December 12, 2013

I agree that it is like putting Chittister over Mother Angelica’s nuns. There has been talk for a couple of years against ‘rad-trads’ and that meant the founders. The seminary was closed on Dec. 8th because the young vocations wanted to live the charism of the founders. What we do not know is if all this is from the commissioner primarily–a Capuchin known not to always even wear a habit and was heard to criticize the penitential practices of the Order–or from higher up in the Curia to destroy the faithful Order. However, renegade and dissenting ‘religious’ are given free reign. The persecution, as Our Lord promised, comes to the most faithful.

tantamergo - December 12, 2013

Good comment. More in just a moment.

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