Jason asked:

Can you receive communion at a Saint Pius the Tenth church?

Karl Keating replied:

"The SSPX is the Society of Saint Pius the tenth. This organization established by the late Marcel Lefebvre, the archbishop to celebrate exclusively what we now call the extraordinary form of the mass, that is the Tridentine Latin Mass. You may remember that in 1988 contrary to Vatican directives Lefebvre and another bishop ordained four men to be bishops for this order of SSPX.

By doing that, according to canon law, all six of these men were automatically excommunicated. Lefebvre and the other bishop died a few years later, but a few years ago the four men who were ordained as bishops had their excommunications lifted. So they're not excommunicated any longer. The members, the regular church going members of the SSPX never were themselves excommunicated. But the society has always been in irregular status because it's been in a kind of disobedience form the Church.

At the moment the SSPX is not considered to be in a regular situation with the Church. That means one ought not to attend it. The masses are valid. And if communion were received there it would be a valid communion. Certain of the other sacraments though those priests try to give such as matrimony and confession are not valid because those require jurisdiction given by the local ordinary, the local bishop. The priests of this Society of Saint Pius the tenth don't have that jurisdiction ... they're not given that by local bishops and they can't be given it by the four bishops of that society who themselves don't have any jurisdiction over a diocese ..."


Catholic Answers, "Open Forum" (San Diego: Catholic Answers, 2014)

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Show air date: July 1, 2014

Name of show: Open Forum

Guest comments by: Karl Keating

Question appeared in show: 47:05

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