kasper

Cardinal Walter Kasper on April 12, 2005/Max Rossi

Vatican talks with a controversial splinter group have been difficult and the ultra-traditionalist Catholics will have to make concessions if an accord is to be reached, a senior Vatican cardinal has said.

The Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX), whose four bishops were readmitted to the Church last year after a ban of 21 years, cannot conduct the doctrinal discussions on their terms, but only on those of the Vatican, Cardinal Walter Kasper told a news conference during a visit to Paris.

“Dialogue with them is not easy,” said Kasper, who heads the Vatican department for relations with other Christian churches and with Jews. “The main problem with them is not the Mass in Latin, but the concept of tradition. Do we want a living tradition or a petrified one?”

“I’m for a dialogue, but on our conditions, not on the traditionalists’ conditions,” he added. The SSPX had to accept the Council reforms, the “sine qua non” of any accord.

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