Catholic Family News
A Monthly Journal Preserving our Catholic Faith and Heritage

Bishop Tissier's Pentecost Sermon

Sermon given by His Lordship Bishop Bernard Tissier de Mallerais
at the Pontifical Mass during the Chartres to Paris Pilgrimage
on Whit Sunday – 19th May 2013

Dear pilgrims,

Although we are in the rain and we are cold, inside of us the charity of the Holy Ghost is
burning! Our thoughts are with St Joseph on the road to Egypt, who, having understood that
he was the adoptive and legal father of the Son of God, suddenly in the night had to leave
Bethlehem and go into exile.

Well, this is rather in the image of our own situation, my dear faithful. We are on the paths of
exile and that may be for a long time. We must take courage, with the Holy Ghost, imitating
the example and the vocation of St. Joseph. When the angel said to him in the night: “Joseph
take Mary and the Child and flee into Egypt!” immediately and without question, he went and
stayed there, in a foreign country where he did not even know the language, for one or two
until God called him back from Egypt. “I called my Son out of Egypt!”

(Looking at) our position in the Church, dear faithful, we resemble a little the Holy Family;
we are in exile and yet we are the Holy Family. You see, the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and
Joseph was the seedling-Church! The Church did not yet exist but here was the Church in
seed; firstly, there was Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the head of the Church, his Mystical
Body; then there was the first member of the Church, Mary, the Most Holy and Immaculate
Virgin, redeemed in advance through the blood of Jesus Christ; and there was Joseph,
cleansed of original sin, probably before his birth (we do not know exactly).

So, the Holy Family represented the Church. Well we, dear faithful, in Tradition, the Society
of St. Pius X and the friendly religious and priestly communities, we carry the Church in
Since the Church is officially occupied by the Modernists, we are sent into exile,
carrying the Church within us, and this may last for a few more years, until the Lord
sends his angel and tells us, “Now you can return to the land of Israel,” officially. But we are
still carrying within us the Church!

I remember that Archbishop Lefebvre explained very well to us that we had within us, in Tradition, the four notes of the Catholic Church, the four marks of the Church, showing that, despite our abnormal situation of exile, we remain at the heart of the Catholic Church! We have indeed kept the unity of the Church, the catholicity of the Church, One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic.

“Unity” because we have kept the faith! The unity of the Church is first of all in the Catholic faith, in that all Catholics profess the same faith! Well, we have the unity of the Church because we have the faith of all time, dear faithful, and there is no question of leaving it and compromising with the modernist heresy.

After “One”,
Holy! We have kept the holiness of the Church and of that you are the proof,
dear families where God chooses these beautiful religious and priestly vocations, lives
devoted to God which are a model for the whole Church! We have kept the note of the
holiness of the Church by the grace of God.

“One, Holy,”
Catholic! We also have the catholicity of the Church, for the Tradition we
represent has spread worldwide! Not only in France, not only in the United States,
represented here by its district superior, not only in Germany, represented by many pilgrims,
not only in these places ... but all over the world! You, dear pilgrims, you are the proof that
Tradition, so alive in us, is Catholic!

And finally we represent
Apostolicity of the Church! The Church is Apostolic, we are also
apostolic. That means we have the apostolic succession through our bishops. We, bishops of
the Society of Saint Pius X, have received the episcopate from the hands of Archbishop
Lefebvre in a legitimate way, even if it was abnormal. And therefore, as long as we remain in
the Church, we carry the Church in exile.

So, dear faithful, we may often ask what is our vocation? Could it not be to seek from Rome
those blessings which rightfully should be ours
to seek approval and recognition? Of
course, this is a question we could ask ourselves, but it is not the essential question!

The real question we must ask ourselves is: “How should we witness to the Catholic faith
today, in the present situation of the Church which is suffering a terrible crisis?” What
witness should we bear, today? And the answer is the testimony of all the witnesses of the
Faith and the Martyrs! All these saints of the Church, these confessors of the Faith, all the
martyrs of the Church are an example for us!

So here is the answer to that question, dear faithful! This is the best way to bear witness
before the whole Church: to be on a pinnacle and publicly condemned to exile. Well, this is
to our advantage because our testimony is all the more striking for being considered a
stumbling block by the Modernists – just as Our Lord was by Herod at the time. Is it not an
advantage for the Church to see where Tradition is?
This is the stumbling block for the
Modernists, for what is called the Conciliar Church, that is to say, the sect that occupies
the Catholic Church. This is an advantage for us, to be regarded as excluded and in exile,
dear faithful; to be looked upon as the “stone rejected by the builders” which will become,
and already is, the cornerstone, the stone that supports the building.

Is it not Tradition, the Catholic faith of all time that we represent?
So here's why we do not
weep if we do not receive from Rome that news which was perhaps expected… or
whatever. Let us remain quietly in exile as the good Lord wills. And let us bear this witness
to the Catholic faith that the martyrs have given.

I spoke this morning to the children about Saint Hermenegild. He was a young martyr,
seventeen years old, who lived in the sixth century. He was Catholic, but his father was a
heretic, an Arian. He was supposed to inherit the throne of Spain, but his father, furious that
his son was a Catholic, forbade him the throne and sentenced him to prison. Hermenegild –
whom we celebrate on April 13th (a month ago) was in prison for several months as Easter
approached. He wanted to receive Communion, Holy Communion for Easter. His father was
thinking the same thing and sent him a bishop carrying Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament! What
a joy for Hermenegild to be able to make his Easter communion! Except that when the bishop
entered the prison cell, he presented himself thus: “I am the Bishop of Huesca, I am an Arian
and I bring you Holy Communion!” “I am Arian,” that is to say “I am a heretic, I'm not

It was a bishop who was not Catholic, dear faithful, who brought Holy Communion to
Hermenegild. What did Hermenegild do? What would you have done in his place? Would
you still have accepted to receive Holy Communion? In order to receive Jesus in the
Eucharist, is it not worth making some compromises, receiving even from unworthy hands
the Lord Jesus? This bishop celebrated Mass validly though he did not believe that Jesus is
God, because that was the Arian religion. He did not even believe that Jesus was God! But
we do think he could validly celebrate Mass and he was bringing Jesus in the Eucharist!

Well, in the twinkling of an eye, inspired by one of the gifts of the Holy Ghost – whom we
are celebrating today
the gift of Counsel, he said: “No. I will not receive communion from
your sacrilegious hands! As for me, I am in chains but I am free to work my salvation. You,
my lord, are free but you are a slave of the devil because you have a false faith, you're not
Catholic! And I will not receive Holy Communion from sacrilegious hands!”

What an example for us, my dear faithful!
All the beautiful gifts coming from Rome, we
are not prepared to accept them without examination, without considering the
circumstances in which this gift would be made. We demand to be able to maintain our
public and entire profession of the Catholic Faith.
We cannot receive poisoned gifts that
would condemn us to compromise with Modernism. This is the example of Saint
Hermenegild, inspired by the Holy Ghost.

There is also the example of St. Joseph, who remained in that exile in which was found the
Church, the whole Church, until it was time to return to the Holy Land. “I called my son out
of Egypt.”

In the meantime, dear faithful, let us pray to the Blessed Virgin, the Spouse of the Holy Ghost
who was filled with the seven gifts of the Holy Ghost from the very first moment of her
Conception. She had the gift of Counsel when she received the message from the Archangel
Gabriel telling her that she was to become the Mother of God! She said “Yes, fiat!”
immediately! The gift of Counsel! And she had the gift of Fortitude at the foot of the Cross
when she remained for three hours standing before her Son, God made man, who was
agonizing on the Cross, before her eyes! She remained firm as the Mother of the High Priest,
the mother of the Victim, the divine victim for our sins. Well, let us ask the Blessed Virgin to
fill us with these seven gifts of the Holy Ghost through her intercession, especially the gift of
Counsel which will dictate our conduct, and the gift of divine Fortitude, so that we may know
when to say “No!” For fortitude consists more in resisting evil than in attacking the enemy.
Let us remain very firm, united in the Catholic faith, dear faithful, under the patronage of St.
Joseph to whom we shall renew in a moment the consecration of the Society of St. Pius X.

Taken from:
All emphasis contained in original.

Orginal French at:

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