1988: Society of Saint Pius X leader Abp. Lefebvre signs, the following day he changes his mind when John Paul II and Card. Ratzinger are not clear on the matter of bishops.
2012: Just as SSPX Superior-general is called to Rome to what he thinks is the final signing, Ratzinger, now Benedict XVI, has one of the greatest about-faces of his Pontificate and, pressured by some Cardinals, asks for another doctrinal statement. The deal falls.
2017: All signs point to an imminent agreement between the ultra-liberal Pontiff from Argentina, Francis, and the ultra-conservative Traditionalist Society.
This Monday evening in Rome, religious correspondent Marco Tosatti (with Sandro Magister, the best reader of the current Pontificate) confirms that just one set of signatures separates the Society from full integration within the Church.
Not only that, he confirms news that Rorate had: Unlike the fake news spread out last month about the Church of Saint Mary on the Esquiline Hill (that belongs to the Vicariate of the City of Time and is not for sale), the building being negotiated for the Roman headquarters of the Society is this:
It’s the Church and former school and convent of the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception — a complex that includes the Church of Saint Mary Immaculate and Saint Benedict Joseph Labre, in the Tuscolano neighborhood of Rome (corner of Via Monza and Via Taranto), very near the Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem and near the Cathedral of Rome, St. John in the Lateran.
We know that because we have learned that the Sisters have already contacted the appropriate Roman Curia congregation and are waiting for authorization to continue negotiations.
Francis and the SSPX: It really is a matter more of when than of if.