Côme de Prévigny, "One Year Later," via "Setting things straight about the SSPX-Vatican talks: What exactly happened in April-June 2012? A guest article by Côme de Prévigny" (Rorate Caeli, July 7, 2013), with this introduction:
A narrative has dominated the news on the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) in the past year: those difficult priests did not accept the extended hand of Pope Benedict XVI; hard-hearted people with stubborn demands, they missed the chance of a lifetime. As in the narrative created by news-creators such as John Allen Jr:Short of standing outside their headquarters in Econe, Switzerland, in the snow and begging forgiveness like Henry IV at Canossa, Benedict XVI did everything possible to heal the split, and yet the society balked. In an Easter letter to friends and benefactors, Bishop Bernard Fellay asserted that Rome has imposed acceptance of the Second Vatican Council as a sine qua non -- a prerequisite, Fellay wrote, "to which we could not and still cannot subscribe."... Our readers know we have covered more extensively this matter than practically any other online source - even moments ago, on a matter reported on Sunday by the German press.
Many observers believe it's now "game over," at least for the foreseeable future and barring some surprising concession on the Lefebvrist side.
In April 2012, a probable regularization certainly seemed to be the case, and who can forget the (leaked) letter of SSPX Superior-General Bp. Bernard Fellay to his fellow bishops? On June 13, 2012, what seemed to be a meeting that would set the path for such reconciliation, following the acceptance by the Vatican of the negotiated Doctrinal Preamble, ended in flames as Bp. Fellay and his assistant met a Vatican side that suddenly came up with new demands - more stringent even than those contained in the May 5, 1988 Protocol. Why would the side that always has the upper hand in any Catholic discussion - that is, Rome - do this, that is, raise new stakes near the end if not from an interest to derail any agreement? Who in the Vatican forced the Supreme Authority's hand at the eleventh hour? Why?
We now know that, in the middle of Vatileaks (which were also made public at around the same time), the Pope's position gradually became untenable. We know that because of what would happen on February 11, 2013. We know now that his isolation, always present throughout the Pontificate, had become critical since the explosion of Vatileaks in the heart of the Pontifical Apartments - that Francis (rightly, it seems, considering what happened with his predecessor) has refused as his living quarters. And we can presume that the pressures on the Pope reached unbearable levels. Truly unbearable.
We asked our friend Côme de Prévigny to present a brief history of those decisive months: something happened in the Vatican between April and June 2012 that created the need for unprecedented demands, more stringent even than the contents of the 1988 Protocol; the "stubborn SSPX" narrative, regarding what took place in June 2012, is simply unsustainable.
Côme de Prévigny, "One Year Later" (scroll down at linked site)