Who was Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre?

FAQ #2

Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre was the founder of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX).

A brief history: 1905-1991

November 29, 1905
Birth of Marcel Lefebvre to Rene and Gabrielle Lefebvre.

September 21, 1929
Marcel Lefebvre is ordained a priest.

Having become a Holy Ghost Father, he becomes a missionary in Gabon, Africa.

September 18, 1947
He is consecrated a bishop and appointed Apostolic Vicar of Dakar, Senegal.

Bishop Lefebvre is Pope Pius XII’s Apostolic Delegate for 18 African countries.

September 14, 1955
He becomes the first Archbishop of Dakar.

Pope John XXIII appoints Archbishop Lefebvre to the Central Preparatory Commission for the Second Vatican Council; all of this commission's work though will be rejected by the liberals at the onset of the Council.

Lefebvre returns to France to be the Bishop of Tulle.

Archbishop Lefebvre is elected and acts as Superior General of the Holy Ghost Fathers. During the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), he helps to lead the resistance to the liberal hijacking of the council via the Coetus Internationalis Patrum, which consisted of nearly 200 bishops.

In the wake of Vatican II, liberals within the Holy Ghost Fathers attempt to force him to implement changes to the congregation. Knowing that this "updating" would destroy his missionary society, he decides to resign as superior general and go into “retirement.”

Approached by seminarians, parents, priests and bishops (and having received the encouraging sign that this was the will of God—the urging and permission of Bishop Francois Charriere), Archbishop Lefebvre founds the Priestly Society of St. Pius X.

The Society of St. Pius X having received its official approval on November 1, 1970 by the local bishop, Bishop Adam Nestor, and then by the Congregation of the Clergy of the Vatican, Archbishop Lefebvre acts as the priestly socieyt's first Superior General.

Until, in view of his imminent death, he consecrates successors, Archbishop Lefebvre does all he can to be faithful to the grace of his episcopacy, traveling the world to encourage Catholics to hold fast to the faith and traditions of their fathers, confirming their young and ordaining for them priests.

March 25, 1991
Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre passes before his Eternal Judge.

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