Update: Please, keep in mind that these statistics where never intended to be published. In fact, the entire visitation and the resulting decree regarding the appointment of the commissioner and the restriction of the Extraordinary Form for the FI were never intended to be published. Part of the shock of the news of the decree was that all the friars involved had done such a good job at not talking about it as per the request of the Vatican. Few outside the order knew we had any problem at all, even though the visitation had been taking place for about a year. Right at the time when we had the highest hope (when the news of the decree was privately announced to the friars) of resolving our difficulties quietly behind closed doors, fully respecting everyone’s good reputation, not only was the decree leaked to the blogs that are sympathetic to traditionalism but, as outlined below, they broke the story in a way that made the Pope and the Vatican look bad with the resulting negative firestorm. What a mess! To help remedy this the Vatican has decided to publish the results of the questionnaire that provide good solid numbers to give everyone an idea of why they had to act. Some have taken offense that we are airing problems in our order, showing our dirty laundry. This is, indeed, unfortunate, but it is the only recourse now that our internal conflict has been made public and aggressively used by some outside the order to promote an agenda against the Vatican and our dear Holy Father, Pope Francis.
– Fra Roderic, Web Master
Sept 24, 2013
Publication of data from an internal questionnaire: Regarding the old Mass, 64% of the friars stated that there are problems, and as many as 77% of these said that they could only be resolved with an extraordinary General Chapter or by the appointment of a Commissioner over the Institute.
There is significant data blatantly contradicting many articles and bitter comments that have appeared over the last two months on blogs close to the traditionalist world, sites and blogs that attempt to reduce the internal affairs of the Franciscans of the Immaculate to the “traitorous” initiative of handful of friars allergic to the old Mass.
On 19 September, during the course of an audience of the Secretary of the Congregation for Religious with the Commissioner of the Franciscans of the Immaculate, Vatican officials authorized the publication of the statistical data emerging from the questionnaire that the Apostolic Visitator submitted to all the members of the Institute in perpetual vows. The questionnaire focused on four multiple-choice questions, suggested by the then Procurator General of the Franciscans of the Immaculate. The results speak for themselves, and demonstrate why the Holy See decided to intervene by appointing a Commissioner to the Institute.
The first point concerned the “style of government of the Superior General,” the founder of the Institute, Father Stefano Manelli. 39% of the friars responded that (more…)