Taking of the Cassock at the Seminary in Flavigny, February 2, 2019

Source: FSSPX News

On the feast of the Presentation of the Child Jesus in the Temple, Bishop Bernard Tissier de Mallerais gave the cassock to 16 young men at the Saint-Curé d’Ars Seminary in Flavigny.

Most of the new Levites are French but two of them are English, one is Portuguese, and one is Swiss. About 30 Society priests came from all over France to attend the ceremony, including Fr. Benoît de Jorna, the District Superior. Fr. Robert Brucciani, District Superior of England who assisted the bishop as deacon, and Fr. Samuel Bon, who is in charge of the SSPX apostolate in Lisbon, Porto and Fatima, came with a group of faithful from Portugal.

The priests from Mérigny, the Capuchins, the Sisters and Oblates of the Society, and the Dominican Sisters of Saint-Pré and Fanjeaux all sent members of their communities.

In his sermon, the celebrant made a parallel between the Levites in the sanctuary and Jesus’ entry into the Temple on the day of His Presentation: the cassock is a sign of contradiction. He quoted one of Archbishop Lefebvre’s letters to his fellow priests written when he was Superior General of the Holy Ghost Fathers:

‘You are not of the world’ (Jn. 15:19) (…); ‘you will be my witnesses’ (Acts 1:8)! The cassock procures precisely these two ends, marking the separation from the world and the testimony to Our Lord. (…) Lay clothes, the disappearance of any testimony from our habit clearly shows a lack of faith in the priesthood, an underestimation of others’ religious sense and a form of cowardice, a lack of courage in one’s convictions. (February 11, 1963)

The History of the Seminary of Flavigny

The Seminary of Flavigny is situated in the Maison Lacordaire that just celebrated the 200th anniversary of its religious life. On November 4, 1818, the property that had been the residence of the royal bailiff in the 18th century became the minor seminary of the diocese of Dijon. From 1824 to 1846, it was the Mother House of the Sisters of Providence of Vitteaux.

In 1848, Pierre Grognot, the pastor of Flavigny, offered the property to Reverend Fr. Lacordaire. The famous preacher and restorer of the Dominican Order in France turned it into the Dominican novitiate for the province of France. It was during this period that the church was built.

After the Dominicans were expelled in 1880 then 1903, other communities took their place: the Ursulines then the Dominican Sisters. The convent of St. Dominic came to be known as the Maison Lacordaire around this time. In 1939, the Missionary Dominican Sisters made it their Mother House. They remained until 1971, caring for the sick and for the youth groups; their presence has remained engraved in the memory of the town’s inhabitants. Their foundress is buried in the property’s cemetery.

In 1971, the Little Sisters of St. Francis purchased the property in order to found a Traditional branch with the help of Fr. Louis Coache. They devote themselves to caring for the elderly and are currently located in Brittany, in Trévoux.

In 1986, the Priestly Society of Saint Pius X took over the house to form seminarians and brothers in the traditional spirit of the Church. Over 680 candidates of 38 different nationalities have gone through this seminary in the past 30 years.

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