Lifting the Excommunications of the Lefebvrite Bishops

Monday, February 2, 2009

PHILADELPHIA (January 30, 2009) – Saint Joseph’s University’s Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations will host a briefing and panel discussion on Pope Benedict XVI’s recent decision to lift the excommunications of four bishops ordained by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, founder of the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX). The panel will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 3 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. in room 264 of Barbelin Hall.

SSPX is an organization that rejects the Second Vatican Council’s ecumenical and interreligious outreach. The bishops were excommunicated because their 1988 ordinations violated a papal prohibition. Richard Williamson, one of the four bishops, publicly denied in a recent interview that nearly six million Jews died in gas chambers as a result of the Holocaust.

The panelists include Rev. Msgr. Michael J. Carroll, director of the Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, Archdiocese of Philadelphia; Philip A. Cunningham Ph.D., director of the Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations; and Rabbi Alan Iser, executive committee, Philadelphia Board of Rabbis; adjunct instructor, Saint Joseph’s University and Villanova University.

For more information about the event, contact Cunningham at 610-660-1863 or, or access the IJCR website.

Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Associate Director of University Communications, 610-660-3240,

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