Diocese of Covington at 401 E. 20th Street, Covington, KY 41014-1485 US - HomeWelcome to The Diocese of Covington
To the Faithful of the Diocese of Covington:
There has been established within the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Covington, specifically in Walton, Kentucky, a church whose name is Our Lady of the Assumption Church. This entity is a chapel of the Society of St. Pius X. The church and the society that sponsors it have created much confusion and misunderstanding in the Diocese of Covington. I have personally been asked many questions about both. It is therefore necessary and it falls upon me to clarify the situation for the Faithful of the Diocese of Covington so as to avoid further confusion.
The Society of St. Pius X was formed after the Second Vatican Council by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre. On 30 June 1988 he proceeded to consecrate bishops for the Society of St. Pius X against the direction and without the mandate of His Holiness Blessed Pope John Paul II. Archbishop Lefebvre and the four men consecrated bishops for the Society of St. Pius X were excommunicated. Our Emeritus Holy Father Benedict XVI lifted that excommunication during his pontificate. When he did so, he stated: “Doctrinal questions obviously remain and until they are clarified the Society has no canonical status in the Church and its ministers cannot legitimately exercise any ministry.” Concretely, this means the priests of the Society of St. Pius X are suspended (cf. Code of Canon Law, canon 265). Please note, the Sacraments of Penance (Confession) and Matrimony, administered by priests of the Society of St. Pius X, are invalid (cf. Code of Canon Law, canon 966 and canons 1108 and 1109). Unfortunately, some believed and some were led to believe that when the excommunication of the four bishops of the Society of St. Pius X was lifted, the Society of St. Pius X was reconciled to the Roman Catholic Church. This is not – nor has ever been – the case.
It is morally illicit (unlawful) for the Faithful to participate in Masses of the Society of St. Pius X unless they are legitimately impeded from participating in a Mass celebrated by a Catholic priest in good standing in the Church (cf. Code of Canon Law, canon 844.2). The fact of not being able to assist at the celebration of the “Tridentine” Mass is not considered a sufficient motive for attending Masses offered by priests of the Society of St. Pius X. Participation in such Masses and in the administration of the sacraments at the chapels of the Society of St. Pius X can, over a period of time, lead to a schismatic habit of thought and heart as one slowly imbibes a mentality which separates itself from the Magisterium of the Holy Roman Catholic Church. For those faithful who desire the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass according to the Extraordinary Form (“Tridentine” Mass) they will find such valid and lawful Masses celebrated at All Saints Church in Walton, KY, every Sunday at 9:15 a.m. and every First Saturday at 9:15 a.m. Masses according to the Extraordinary Form are also celebrated daily at St. Bernard Church in Dayton, KY at 6:30 a.m. and on Sundays at 8:00 a.m.
The doctrinal questions that remain unresolved between the Roman Catholic Church and the Society of St. Pius X are not insignificant. A special Pontifical Commission, Ecclesia Dei, under the auspices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, continues to work toward needed resolution. Until that is achieved, the lack of full communion of the Society of St. Pius X with the Roman Catholic Church and our Holy Father the Pope continues to wound the unity with which our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ endowed His mystical body, the Church. Therefore, let us all pray for the Church that her unity may be healed for the glory of God and the salvation of souls.
Given at the Chancery of the Diocese of Covington on this the 23 Day of May in the Year of Our Lord 2013.
Most Reverend Roger J. Foys, D.D.
Bishop of Covington
• Our Lady of the Assumption Church in Walton, KY is a member of the Society of St. Pius X.
• The Society of St. Pius X is not in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church.
• Masses celebrated by priests of the Society of St. Pius X are illicit (unlawful).
• The Sacraments of Penance (Confession) and Matrimony celebrated by priests of the Society of St. Pius X (and Our Lady of the Assumption Church in Walton, KY) are not valid.
• Participation in the activities of the Society of St. Pius X, most especially sacramental, can lead to a schismatic habit of thought and heart and thus must be avoided.
• Masses according the Extraordinary Form (“Tridentine” Rite) are celebrated licitly and lawfully at All Saints Church in Walton on Sundays at 9:15 a.m. and on First Saturdays at 9:15 a.m. and at St. Bernard Church in Dayton, KY on weekdays at 6:30 a.m. and on Sundays at 8:00 a.m.
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'To Serve, Not Be Served'
Bishop William A. Hughes, who as the Diocese of Covington’s eighth Bishop led the “People of God” from 1979-1995, died Feb. 7 at Carmel Manor in Ft. Thomas. The Bishop Emeritus of the diocese was 91 years old. Bishop Hughes resided at Carmel Manor in Ft. Thomas since 2004. His ...
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