The SSPX's German District
held an interview with Fr. Matthias Gaudron, a priest of the Society
of St. Pius X who teaches dogmatic theology.
thanks RORATE CAELI for translating the original German interview into
English, which we reproduce here.
The discussion about the controversial statements of Bishop [now
Archbishop as of this date - Ed.] Gerhard Ludwig Mueller
concerning the Virginity (of Our Lady) is increasingly attracting
attention. A multitude of internet portals host contributions that are
either in favor or against these statements.
exchange was started by the
press release of the SSPX at the news agency DAPD concerning the nomination of Bishop Mueller.
has checked with dogmatic theologian Fr. Gaudron if he still upholds
his critique on the statements of Bishop Mueller.
Fr. Gaudron, several reactions to your comments defend Bishop Mueller
by stating that the criticized statements (of Bishop Mueller) were
taken out of context. This is, for example, the opinion of Msgr. Bux,
who is a member of the CDF. What do you have to say about this?
We are dealing here with a simple pretext, as anyone can prove who
reads the statements in their context. I have quoted all the
statements so that they can be verified easily. The defenders of
Bishop Mueller are apparently unable to quote him outlining the issues
Some have also answered you that the Dogmatiks
[in English, Fundamentals
of Catholic Dogma – Ed.]
of Ludwig Ott, who is not considered a Modernist, describe that the
particularities concerning the physiological aspect of the Virginity
are not part of the faith of the church.
The Dogmatiks of Ott does
explain, though, that Mary has given birth to Jesus without any
corporal suffering, preserving her virginal integrity. It also
presents the analogies of the Church fathers like the emergence of
Christ from the sealed grave and the passing of light through glass.
only correct thing is that the Church has not stipulated the exact
particularities of what was different between the birth of Christ and
the birth of other human beings, like, for example, whether the birth
canal was widened or not, etc. Such indiscrete penetration of the
mystery is not what the church wants to do. However, the painlessness
of the birth, as well as the intactness of the hymen have always been
Mitterer seems to have been one of the first to want to deny the
physiological particularities in his 1952 book Dogma und Biologie
der heilgen Familie [Dogma
and biology of the Holy Family]. Ott at first referred to this
book [in his above-mentioned Dogmatiks], but in later editions the reference had disappeared. One
could suggest that this is related to a Monitum of the Holy
Office (of 1960) that, alas, was never published but only sent to a
number of Bishops and religious superiors. This Monitum
deplores the apparition of several works in recent times concerning
the virginity during the birth that are in clear contradiction to the
Catholic teaching, and it prohibits the future publication of such
But isn't the virginity before birth, [by which is] meant the
conception of Christ by the Holy Ghost, much more important? This,
Bishop Mueller doesn't deny.
Without a doubt. But, firstly, it is Bishop Mueller himself who has
recently said that whoever wants to be Catholic, must accept the
entire doctrine of the Church and should not choose [whatever he
likes]. Secondly, those that deny the virginal conception often argue
just like [Bishop] Mueller: the virginity does not concern biological
facts, but that Mary had given herself completely to God. For example,
a university lecturer once said to me that of course Mary was a
virgin; but one had to wonder what this virginity in fact means! These
people manage to state that Mary was a virgin, while maintaining at
the same time that she received Jesus from Joseph. The denial of the
virginity in the birth seems to me to be a first exercise of
relaxation of the dogma that only prepares much more severe ones.
What do you have to say about Msgr. Bux's declaration that the
explanation of Bishop Mueller concerning the Eucharist was only to
avoid a certain Capharnaism?
Also in this reaction I can only see a pretext. Bishop Mueller does,
in fact, talk about transubstantiation, but his explanations stay
within the theories of transfinalization and transsignification,
theories that Pope Paul VI. had rejected for being insufficient in his
encyclical Mysterium fidei, mentioned by Msgr. Bux, of
September 3, 1965.
same can be said about the relationship of the Protestants with the
church. No one denies that a valid baptism creates a certain
orientation towards the church and that one should also be friendly to
Christians that are separated from the church; however, that these
would be fully integrated in the church is not even something that the
new Codex [of Canon Law]
You do not, then, see your assessment refuted?
The whole process appears to me to be symptomatic of our relationship
to the Vatican. We submit a problem and one answers us with pretexts
or with appeals to obedience.
Society [of St. Pius X] says that there is a problem if the Prefect of
the CDF advocates theses that contradict the doctrines of the church.
We have brought forth this in a factual manner and we haven't talked
about "heretic" or "heresy", like some media
present it. As a reaction we get that we should have faith in the
Pope, because a Bishop that is nominated by the pope could never have
taught anything wrong.
is the same with the Council. We say that there are some problems with
it, because some passages of the Council clearly contradict the prior
Magisterium of the church. Here, too, we always get the reply that
there can be no contradiction, so there is none. To some extend this
really goes against all logic.