His Excellency Bishop Richard Williamson nearly always seems to me immensely readable, except when he is in the grip of some Conspiracy Theory which leads him on to blame some predictable groups.
One of his recent 'Eleison' blogposts attacked, yet again, those in the SSPX who hope for a rapport with the Vatican. He advances the theory that Rome might assign to the Society a couple of "relatively decent Newbishops" (his terminology) to provide it with the Sacraments of Holy Order and Confirmation, rather than letting it choose bishops from within the ranks of the Society.
What can he mean? What has he heard? Whom does he have in mind? I speculate ...
The retiring bishop of Chur is going to live in an SSPX school.
And there is the admirable Bishop Schneider, who once went on a semi-official mission to 'inspect' Econe, and liked what he saw.
It seems to me that, if Bishop Richard is right and I am right in my guess as to what he means, he is being less than fair to Bishop Athanasius. Bishop Athanasius has been a great deal more open and out-spoken than most in his attitude to the present disorders in the Church Militant. Leaders of the Ecclesia Dei communities have been cautious. And the universal Episcopate, successors of the Apostles, vicars of Christ ... plurima ne dicamus.
However, regretfully I would have to agree that the Society needs be be very wary of putting its neck into a curial noose, however silken. Above all, it needs to be very sure that it does not lose its potential ability, in a possible situation of great necessity, to consecrate more bishops sine Mandato Apostolico.
At the very least, the Society would need the assurance, already enjoyed by the Ordinariates, that its new bishops would be chosen by Rome from a terna submitted by the Society itself.
And some in Rome have sometimes shown a sinister interest in assets owned by orthodox groups.