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SSPX - Seven Steps to Fix the Church

Another John C. Pontrello tongue-in-cheek satire wtitten on August 11, 2016.


Many traditional Catholics reject the idea that the Soceity of Saint Pius X or SSPX could be a controlled (false) opposition. Included among these Catholics are even some notorious names from the Sedevacantist crowd. While I could write an article outlining the ways this organization fits the bill, my intention here is not to try to convince anyone of that position, but only to lay out a plan of action that if executed, might even convince me that I've been wrong about the SSPX all along.

My approach is simple: if the SSPX is for real, let it prove itself. After four decades of rosary crusades, contradictions, doublespeak, hypocrisy, and sucking up to the modernists in Rome, it's time for the SSPX bishops to exercise the authority that is supposed to come with the office and impose their wills on the men whom they believe have been destroying their Church for the past fifty years. At this late stage of the game, anything less is unacceptable. I also think it's time for SSPX defenders and sympathizers to start holding their leaders accountable. Whether one loves or hates the Society, no one can deny that it has failed to fix the Church over its 40+-year history.

On a personal note, I don’t have a stake in the outcome of the ongoing soap opera between the SSPX and modernist Rome. Readers of my book will understand why that is. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for thousands of traditional Catholics who remain stuck in contradictory positions. That's why I believe a serious attempt to fix the Church is long overdue and I can think of no better organization to handle the task than the Society. After all, the SSPX does consider itself as the guardian of the "true" Catholic faith. Because actions speak louder than words, I wrote these seven steps in a results-oriented frame of mind. My conviction is that if the SSPX really intended to fix the Church, it could probably do it in just seven steps and in one year or less. Here’s how…


The very first step for the SSPX is to make bishops. Let the SSPX become a consecration factory and pump out as many new miters as possible. In a year’s time there should be one hundred new SSPX bishops governing territories around the world. Invite the press to every single consecration.

Rationale: Modernist Rome made a mistake by officially recognizing the validity of the SSPX bishops and carrying on negotiations with them. Make them pay for their mistake. There is power in numbers. To this point, Rome has been able to handle three or four SSPX bishops easily but the game will change when they are confronted with one hundred united traditional bishops at once.

What’s required? Very little. This step requires just two bishops to consecrate a new bishop in a single ceremony.


The SSPX should call a council and create a tribunal for the sole purpose of issuing warnings, suspensions, depositions, and excommunications to the modernist heretics one by one beginning with the pope. Invite a small selection of modernist bishops to the synod just to make it seem fair. Not a lot of time should be wasted here since the modernists are well aware of their contradictions and heresies, so this step is just a formality. Again, make sure these actions get as much media attention as possible.

Rationale: The SSPX / Recognize & Resist (R & R) side of traditionalism insists this step must be done and they relentlessly rebuke their traditionalist rivals (the Sedevacantists) for skipping it. In fact, the R &R traditionalists have been waiting for the modernist bishops to depose themselves for more than four decades. Get real, the modernists are not about to depose themselves and yet somebody has to do it. Remember, this is a results-oriented plan.

What’s required? Not as much as one might think. The SSPX bishops really don’t have to go much further than the pope and a few prominent members of his cabinet before moving on to step three.


Purchase, build, or rent a cathedral somewhere in or near the city of Rome and announce intentions to elect a Roman bishop unless modernist Rome acknowledges the authority of the synod from Step 2. Modernist Rome will not comply but by this point, they will be feeling some heat. Be prepared to move on to Step 4 quickly.

Rationale: A Catholic Roman see is imperative.

What’s required? At this point, just a building, and thanks to Vatican II the chances are pretty good they can find an unused one in Rome. If not, tell the modernist Ecumenists that a mosque or synagogue is needed and watch how fast they donate a building.


Let the schism begin. Hold a conclave and elect the “real” bishop of Rome. Announce to the diocese of Rome and all dioceses around the world that the “real” Holy See is up and running and invite the faithful everywhere to transfer their memberships.

Rationale: The bishop of Rome unifies the Church’s faith and communion and serves as its visible foundation. And while it is true that this new Roman bishop will be universally regarded as an antipope, at least in the beginning, so what? It will be difficult to prove he is an antipope without first proving that valid bishops do not have authority to call a council and elect a Catholic to the chair of Peter. Good luck to anyone who tries. Once again, the SSPX should make the modernists pay for acknowledging the validity of the SSPX bishops by forcing them to deal with a rival bishop of Rome and a major schism. Contrary to what many SSPXers think, a major schism could fix their dilemma.

What’s required? Courage, one hundred plane fare tickets to the conclave, lots of coffee & donuts, and fifty adult magazines (jk).


Celebrate the new Holy See with a well-publicized canonization ceremony for Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.

Rationale: the faithful will rally behind Saint Marcel.

What’s required? Just a couple of miracles. If the Vatican can manufacture them and get away with it, so can the SSPX.


Expand the new SSPX Catholic Church throughout the world with the intention of establishing a noticeable presence wherever a modernist structure exists (think Wendy’s vs McDonald’s). Recruit, proselytize, promote, and mass-produce a wide array of educational materials and make sure the campaign incites fear and hysteria. Most importantly, play the "persecution" and "remnant Church" cards and ensure that numerous channels for donations and revenues are available.

Rationale: The SSPX must grow and this can't happen unless the masses are educated and instructed on the issues.

What’s required? A lot, but nothing a pope and an army of bishops, priests, nuns, and inspired faithful cannot accomplish. Look at what Father Nicholas Gruner and Fred Dimond have been able to accomplish with agressive marketing.


Never again acknowledge the “other” Roman Church as legitimate. No more “negotiations” or “talks” with the modernist heretics and never refer to themselves as the SSPX again. Essentially, the SSPX will become the “real” Roman Catholic Church.

Rationale: If the SSPX doesn’t believe in itself neither will anybody else.

What’s required? Patience and discipline.


At least two scenarios could result from carrying out these steps. First, modernist Rome could cave under pressure and comply with the SSPX's demands. In that case, tradition would be restored and the SSPX's contradictory problems would be over. The second scenario is that modernist Rome could persist in heresy and cause the formation of two Roman Churches. In that scenario, the Church would again be restored to tradition- for those who choose it. Only then, SSPX Catholics could practice the traditional faith without hypocrisy and contradictions as they must today under the SSPX's idiotic "recognize and resist" policy. Therefore, the SSPX should be content to let the people decide which of the two organizations represents the real Roman Catholic Church and live peacefully with the results. If you think about it, the only organization that really stands to lose anything is modernist Rome.

Some may wonder why the Sedevacantist bishops could not carry out these same steps. There are at least two major obstacles to that scenario. First, modernist Rome has never acknowledged the validity of the Sedevacantist bishops and second, the Sedevacantist bishops do not acknowledge the validity of modernist Rome. Yet, these steps presuppose that the modernist hierarchy in Rome is legitimate in the first place. But even if Rome and the Sedevacantist bishops did recognize each other, the Sedevacantists still lack the unity, temperament, and organizational structure to pull something of this magnitude off. In all probability, the Sedevacantists could not get through step one without bickering over who should be the pope in step four and the whole plan would fall apart.

As for the SSPX, could it really do these seven steps? I think so. Is this far-fetched? Only for today’s Catholics. Catholics of a prior age would have stormed the Vatican, murdered the heretics, and received a feast day. What’s more, they probably would have done it within 40 days, not 40 years. But would the SSPX enact a plan such as this? If not, why not?

John C. Pontrello

John C. Pontrello is a former Sedevacantist activist and seminarian in a traditional Catholic religious community. Prior to his association with traditional Catholicism, he managed an investment planning practice for many years. He currently resides in Western New York. His book entitled "The Sedevacantist Delusion: Why Vatican II's Clash with Sedevacantism Supports Eastern Orthodoxy" can be purchased through Amazon.com and is highly recommended.

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