On the Invalidity of the New Rite of Episcopal Consecration


If a “priest” is “ordained” by a “bishop” “consecrated” in the 1968 Rite of Episcopal Consecration of Paul VI, then it will be pointless for the SSPX, in its investigative process of considering the validity/invalidity of the ordinations of “priests” desiring to join its congregation, to focus that investigation on an evaluation and analysis of the “consecrating” “bishop’s” sacramental intention:

If it were determined that the presumptive “bishop” possessed the requisite sacramental intention to consecrate a priest (and barring any manifestation of a contrary intention in the external forum, such intent must almost always be presumed to exist, according to the maxim “a negative doubt is to be despised,” whereby only positive and probable doubt would suffice to call into question said intention, such as would be the case if the “bishop” contrived a new sacramental form, etc.), then the “priestly ordination” is presumed in the SSPX to be valid.

But what if that “bishop” were no bishop at all, and consequently, the evaluation and investigation centering on his intention were irrelevant?

That is to say, what if the sacramental form of the 1968 Rite of Episcopal Consecration, which the SSPX today taked for granted, were itself invalid?

The following articles by Fr. Anthony Cekada (which should be read in the order in which they are presented) are excellent critiques regarding the sacramental form of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration, and conclude in its invalidity:

They can all be found on this website toward the bottom of the page: http://www.fathercekada.com/2013/11/06/1968-rite-of-episcopal-consecration-valid-or-no/

  1. Absolutely Null and Utterly Void (Original Study - 2006): http://www.traditionalmass.org/images/articles/NewEpConsArtPDF2.pdf

  2. Why the New Bishops are not True Bishops (Condensed Version - 2006): http://www.traditionalmass.org/images/articles/NotTruBps1.pdf

  3. Still Null and Void (Reply to Fr. Santogrossi, OSB, Fr. Kergorlay, OP, and Fr. Calderon, SSPX - 2007): http://www.traditionalmass.org/images/articles/NuEpConObjex.pdf

  4. New Bishops, Empty Tabernacle (A reply to Fr. Celier - 2007): http://www.traditionalmass.org/images/articles/NewEpCelierWeb.pdf

  5. Saved by Context? (Reply to an Objection - 2012): http://www.fathercekada.com/2012/06/21/saved-by-context-the-68-rite-of-episcopal-consecration-2/

Here is an excerpt from the first article which sets the debate within its historical context, and brings us to the heart of the debate:

“In the summer of 2005, a French traditionalist publisher, Editions Saint-Remi, published the first volume of Rore Sanctifica, a book-length dossier of documentation and commentary on the Paul VI Rite of Episcopal Consecration. The study, featuring on its cover side-by-side photos of Ratzinger and SSPX Superior General Mgr. Bernard Fellay, concluded that the new rite was invalid. This naturally caught the attention of higher-ups in the SSPX in Europe, who were by then negotiating with Benedict XVI to obtain special status in the Vatican II church. How could SSPX’s superiors rally traditionalists to a pope who may not even be a bishop? The Dominicans in Avrillé, France, a traditionalist religious order in the SSPX orbit, immediately took up the task of trying to make a convincing case for the validity of the new rite. One of them, Fr. Pierre-Marie OP, produced a lengthy article in favor of it that the Dominicans published in their quarterly, Sel de la Terre. Thilo Stopka, a former SSPX seminarian in Europe, challenged Fr. Pierre-Marie’s conclusions, and in turn published a great deal of valuable research on the Internet to refute them. Meanwhile, the SSPX’s official U.S. publication, The Angelus, promptly translated Fr. Pierre-Marie’s article into English, publishing it in two successive issues (December 2005, January 2006) under the title “Why the New Rite of Episcopal Consecration is Valid.” I find it ironic and particularly sad that such an article appeared in The Angelus. In August 1977 I visited an old-line traditionalist in Upper Michigan, Bill Hanna. He passed along a favorite quote from Fr. Carl Pulvermacher, a Capuchin who worked with SSPX and would later edit The Angelus: “Once there are no more valid priests, they’ll permit the Latin Mass.” Father Carl, it seems, had a bit of the prophet in him. In his Angelus article, Fr. Pierre-Marie argued that the Paul VI Rite of Episcopal Consecration is valid because it uses prayers to consecrate bishops that are virtually the same as those (a) used in the Catholic Church’s eastern rites, or (b) once used in the ancient Church.”

Is it true?

Fr. Cekada makes a persuasive argument against the validity of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration, rebutting the likes of Fr. Celier (a key SSPX figure who pops up wherever the ralliement is threatened: Former GREC participant, publisher of the book "Benedict XVI and the Traditionalists, which did so much damage to the SSPX in selling the ralliement, and whose Foreword was written by a blaspheming Freemason who has written publicly about his contempt for Archbishop Lefebvre!); and now here defending the validity of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration once again to sell the ralliement), Fr. Calderon, Fr. Pierre-Marie, and others.

These articles disputing the validity of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration seem to me to make the matter of its validity at least questionable (and on that basis, supply the positive and probable doubt regarding defect of form, to shun any and all “priests” and “bishops” stemming from said Rite.

I do not conclude definitively in the invalidity of the new Rite, but believe the matter certainly capable of doubt, and consequently, since it is not permitted to receive doubtful sacraments, keep my distance from all such persons.

Your own conclusions and position may differ.


Given that…


…does that mean that you consider the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration positively doubtful? Can you please explain/summarise your reasoning.


Correct: As I am not able to defeat Fr. Cekada’s arguments, but at the same time realize the matter is over my head, I stop short of believing the new Rite invalid, but think the reasons adduced in favor of that conclusion suffice to inject positive doubt into the matter.


It is such an intriguing question which can spark our conscience into a seemingly never-ending pit of theological uncertainty. The truth though is that unless the Church can make a definitive statement on this matter then Fr. Cekada’s reasoning and even the Dominicans of Avrille’s and others (on the pro-validity side) are merely theological opinions which have no moral weight on the Catholic. What do I mean by that? I don’t mean a sort of indifferent attitude towards this question but simply and objectively speaking it can never bind a Catholic.

To be honest, I tend to ask, on a common sense basis, how the Church could so manifestly get such a question of validity so wrong and that if such is the case then the ramifications on the nature of the Church as an institution founded by Christ are severe and utterly irreversible outside of a miracle which with God is of course possible.

I found another short article while not scholarly per se at least gives another perspective. I will post it shortly.

Alas I think one would very well argue that such rites do not come from the Church as Church but from something else entirely. However, it still leaves one with a thousand unanswered questions and theological quandries which are perplexing with the average Catholic. I will always reiterate but the Church would need to definitively make a statement on this matter. Fr. Cekada’s arguments (his intelligence aside) simply do not hold any weight theologically.


Are they really bishops? (1)

From time to time I get enquiries (or, worse, rude letters claiming to be from individuals with impressive names like Catholic Mission or Catholic State) about the validity of the Orders of the post-Conciliar Church. I’ve tended to ignore such questions, because “the post-Vatican II Church” is the One, Holy Catholic Apostolic Church of God, just as much as “the Post-Tridentine Church” was, in full continuity with the Church of all ages. I have no intention of even seeming to accept the possibility of a ‘sedevacantist’ analysis being worth taking seriously. All such arguments are pure 25-carat nonsense. But, well, if there are real people who are worried by this question and who really want help … rather than merely to spout some angry certainties which somebody has bamboozled them into believing … you did ask …

The preliminary logical question to be put to those who find themselves tempted by Sedevacantism is: "You claim to hold the basic Catholic dogmas that the Church is indefectible; and that the Bishop of Rome holds a unique and God-given place within the life of that Church. How many more decades does the Roman See have to be vacant before these combined doctrines become impossible for sedevacantists to hold?"

And if the post-Vatican II Church is the Catholic Church, and is indefectible, you can’t argue that the overwhelming majority of its bishops and priests are not bishops and priests in the sight of God. Or, if you can argue it, you’ll have to write a very long and very very clever book to do so.

However, prescinding from those rather obvious … and, indeed, totally conclusive … points … I come now to the substance of the arguments that Ordinations according to the post-Conciliar Pontifical are not valid.

It is suggested that the ‘form’ used in the post-Vatican II rites for the consecration of a Bishop (which is what I am going to concentrate upon) is insufficiently precise. But any language, and any specialised subform of any language, has its own internal logic. If the Church, in the new rites, in effect says "We decree that the words spiritus principalis or pneuma hegemonikon hereafter and herein are to have the meaning of episkope ", then that is the meaning those words do have, even if they didn’t have it beforehand. Just as legislatures enacting legislation, or solicitors composing legal agreements, commonly begin by defining terms (“within this Act/Agreement, the term The Society shall be deemed to mean the United Society of Water Diviners and Weak Beer Drinkers of the Parish of Little Snottingham in the Parliamentary Constituency of West Barsetshire”).

Such assignment of precision to a potentially vague term is effective for the described purpose.

To be continued for two more sections. I sha’n’t enable comments till I’ve finished.

Are they really bishops? (2)

Continues …
It is argued that the words in the post-Conciliar Pontifical for Consecrating a Bishop are insufficiently precise.

But that prayer was used for centuries by Oriental communities in communion with Rome, and dissident communities whose orders the settled praxis of the Holy See for centuries was to accept. It was on this ground that Archbishop Lefebvre himself, upon receiving fuller information, changed his mind and accepted that this prayer was adequate to confer the episcopate.

It is argued that the phrase spiritus principalis is insufficiently precise because it is used in some dissident communities in the prayer which is said over a man who is already a bishop but is now being constituted a Patriarch. So … are you, O ye sedevacantists, saying: " Originally this prayer, used for centuries to consecrate bishops, was adequate; but now, since some dissident communities began to use it for a different purpose , it has become insufficient, even in those communities where it is not used for blessing Patriarchs?" If so, I would regard this argument as absurdly and unconvincingly rococo.

Before going on to my next section, I think I had better point out out that it is very easy indeed to construct immensely attractive arguments for dismissing the Orders of people one doesn’t like; the grief comes when the question is asked: “You deployed that argument to prove that X’s Orders are invalid; but the same argument proves also the invalidity of the Orders of Y and of Z and, indeed, of you yourself and the clergy whose ministrations you depend upon .” If you want to shoot off such arguments, my advice is: go to the middle of a large empty field with good lines of vision; discharge your arguments; then keep your eyes and ears wide open for the sound and sight of the returning boomerang. It has sharp edges.

Pius XII (1947) laid down that the Form in the (then) Roman Pontifical for consecrating a Bishop was Comple in sacerdote tuo ministerii tui summam etc…

(1) Are you quite sure, O thou sedevacantist, that this is explicit enough? If I have up my sleeve (I’m not saying I do) an example of a medieval pope who, already being a bishop, had this read over him when he was promoted to the See of Peter, would you conclude that it automatically became too vague to signify the Episcopate? If not, why not?

(2) And if I have up my sleeve early manuscripts of this prayer (I’m not saying I do) which read mysterii rather than ministerii, will this variant still be explicit enough for you? If not , will you admit that very many medieval bishops, consecrated with the use of this form, were not validly consecrated, including almost certainly many popes? If not, why not?

(3) And if I have up my sleeve (I’m not saying I do) a medieval rite of presbyteral ordination in which that same formula was used to ordain a mere priest, would you still be consistent enough to advance the argument that the words, since they were used in a context other than episcopal consecration, manifestly do not univocally signify the episcopate? And that therefore most, if not all, medieval and later Western bishops were not validly ordained? If not, why not?

Be careful how you answer those questions: I have capacious sleeves.

To be concluded. I will not enable comments until after the next and final installment.

Are they really bishops? (3)

Sedevacantists have argued that the words in the post-Conciliar Form for consecrating Bishops, spiritus principalis , are insufficiently univocal (unambiguous) to denote the ordo episcopalis . I have pointed out that the same problem could be urged against the corresponding words which Pius XII declared to be the Form : ministerii tui summam . This phrase could perfectly well have applied to the Ministry of the Roman Pontiff himself; and, since the Rite we are speaking of was Roman, quite possibly this is what it originally did mean. And there is a manuscript variant mysterii tui summam … what exactly would that ‘unambiguously’ refer to? Did your sedevacantist indoctrinators tell you how to explain that away?

In any case, before 1947, the communis sententia among approved manualists (this is summed up by Cardinal Gasparri, 1852-1934, Secretary of State under Benedict XV and Pius XI) saw the Form for episcopal Consecration as being three quite different words: Accipe Spiritum Sanctum . Bishops, when consecrating a new bishop before 1947, intended to consecrate him when they opened their mouths and said these words, not when they uttered the words which Pius XII subsequently selected and declared to be the Form.

Are those three words sufficiently precise to indicate, univocally , the Episcopate? By your standards, O thou sedevacantist, surely not; they actually appeared also in presbyteral ordinations according to the pre-Conciliar rites (they were said over me in 1968) and they are found in the Tridentine rite of ordination to the Diaconate, and might even without inappropriateness be used in Confirmation. If (like popes, bishops and theologians for hundreds of years) you are happy with these vague words Accipe Spiritum Sanctum as the Form for episcopal consecration, why do you have such a problem with the rather more explicit, distinctly less vague, words calling for the granting of the Spiritus principalis ?

Cardinal Gasparri ( this is a most compelling point ) also raised the hypothetical question of whether a consecrand would be validly consecrated if the whole of the ancient consecratory prayer were omitted and so all the candidate had said over him were the three words Accipe Spiritum Sanctum . He concluded ("admittimus cum communi sententia") that this would be valid: "quia licet illa sola verba in se inspecta sint indeterminata, et non satis exprimant collationem ordinis episcopalis, tamen satis determinantur … ipsamet caeremonia sine praefatione ".

Is your competence in these matters, O sedevacantist, really so much greater than that of the towering scholarly figure who masterminded the production of the 1917 Code of Canon Law, Gasparri the Great? Are you so much more soaked in the writings of the Fathers, the Scholastics, the Manualists, than he was? Perhaps you write him off, together with the popes he served, Benedict XV and Pius XI, as proto-post-conciliarists? As Crypto-Modernists?

Dear me, you really do live in a narrow little world of your own. No wonder you never sound happy.

The sedevacantist arguments so glibly urged against the validity of Consecrations performed with the post-Conciliar Pontifical do not hold a drop of water in them … not a millionth of a molecule. These arguments are shown to be baseless, not by deploying what some might dismiss as modernist, specious, flabby post-Conciliar arguments, but by considering the standard texts and praxis of the pre -Conciliar Church, its popes, and its great teachers. The Magisterium of nearly two millennia.

I would have some sympathy with you, O sedevacantist, if the only argument you desired to press went something like this:

"It was in the highest degree deplorable for the 1960s revisers, without any Conciliar mandate , to eliminate the ancient Roman Prayer for making a bishop (the theology of which can be traced back to the Letter to Corinth of Pope S Clement I in the 90s of the first Christian century) and to replace it by a distinctly unfortunate Oriental prayer of unknown origin, which happened to be fashionable in the 1960s because of a now-exploded theory about its authorship and origins. Its adoption was proposed and carried by the chairman of the coetus concerned with the Pontifical, Dom Bernard Botte, who had himself produced an edition of it and thus may be thought to have had a vested interest. What a totally improper and irresponsible way to carry on in such an important matter!!!"

A Catholic is not forbidden to entertain such a highly critical view of what was done in the 1960s. In fact, I confess that I hold it myself. And I hold it strongly.

But that action, however deplorable, did not come within a million, million miles of rendering the Orders of the Catholic Church invalid. The Gates of Hell have not prevailed.



All italics etc…are not mine but the author’s.

A point I want to make is that I cannot logically see that a belief in the Crisis caused by Vatican 2 necessarily entails a rejection of the validity of the new rites of episcopal consecration and priestly ordination. It almost seems that - prima facie - sedevacantists want to argue the invalidity because it would then bolster their arguments in a vacant see but must that be so necessarily?

Also, I am not sure if Archbishop Lefebvre ever maintained conclusively that the new rites of consecration/ordination were valid so perhaps Fr. Hunwicke received incorrect information.


I agree with that. Based on my exposure to sedevacantists, I believe that many, if not all of them first emotionally embrace sedevacantism, whether they realise it or not, and only afterwards try to prove their emotional conclusion with all kinds of technical and elaborate arguments. In other words, to “prove” their emotional conclusion is their only way of coping with the reality of the crisis in the Church.


In EC #449, Bishop Williamson announced the planned episcopal consecration of Fr. Thomas Aquinas.

In the two EC’s that followed, Bishop WIlliamson took up the matter of the questionable validity of new rite of episcopal consecration (which were actually parts 2 & 3; part 1 going all the way back to EC #121 in 2009).

Obviously, validity was on his mind.

He references a study by Fr. Calderon (SSPX) which concludes:

On the other hand in the context of the Newrite and its institution, the Newmatter, Newform and Newintention are very probably valid, because they signify what needs to be signified and most of their elements come from Rites accepted by the Church. But the validity is not certain because the break with Tradition is not legitimate, and because the Newrite is only similar to Rites approved by the Church, and all the changes go in a modernist direction. Therefore the absolute need for certain validity in sacramental Rites applies: until the restored Magisterium of the Church pronounces that the Newrite of Consecration is valid, then to be safe, Newbishops should be reconsecrated conditionally, and Newpriests ordained only by Newbishops should be re-ordained conditionally.

The following week in EC #450, Bishop Williamson writes:

As for the NEC’s new Form, it was established by the highest Church authority, Pope Paul VI, but not with his Extraordinary infallibility, nor with the Church’s Ordinary infallibility (which never breaks with Tradition), so that a final Church judgment upon its validity must wait for the restoration of the Church’s sane Magisterium, presently eclipsed. Meanwhile as a sacramental Form it does seem valid, because “Accept the Principal Spirit” is a Form similar to other Forms approved by the Church, and any intrinsic ambiguity as to the order of bishops is wholly clarified by the immediately surrounding extrinsic Rite.

However, since Paul VI established this Newform both meaning and not meaning to break with the Traditional concept of a Catholic bishop, then in accordance with the doctrine of Leo XIII’s “Apostolicae Curae,” had his dissolving of episcopal authority been clear and explicit, his NEC consecrations would certainly be as invalid as Anglican Orders. As it is, the modernist errors are only implicit in the context of the NEC’s institution. But it is a dark shadow overhanging the validity of the NEC.

The point being, I should be very surprised to hear that the mere consideration of the issue, or the expression of any doubt in the matter, relegated me (or Bishop Williamson, or Fr. Calderon) to the domain of the emotional.

That even the defenders of the validity of new Rite admit its validity is capable of question implies to me a to-level caution:

  1. Do not form a solid conclusion one way or the other on the matter;

  2. Stay away from those consecrated in this Rite until such time as a reliable magisterium can rule on the matter.


Bishop Tissier de Mallerais has also expressed doubt about the validity of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration, and not for emotionalistic reasons (nor need he have been suspected of sedevacantism for expressing his positive and probable doubts):

" Thank you for sending me a copy of Dr. Rama Coomarawamy’s pamphlet “ Le Drame Anglican .”

After reading it quickly, I concluded there was a doubt about the validity of episcopal consecration conferred according to the rite of Paul VI.

The [phrase] “ spiritum principalem ” in the form introduced by Paul VI is not sufficiently clear in itself and the accessory rites do not specify its meaning in a Catholic sense.

As regards Mgr Lazo, it would be difficult for us to explain these things to him; the only solution is not to ask him to confirm or ordain.

Yours very truly in Our Lord Jesus Christ,

+Bernard Tissier de Mallerais

PS: Another thought: Mgr Lazo has already confirmed “quite a few” [people] with us. Obviously, this is valid because “the Church supplies” (canon 209), because a simple priest can confirm with jurisdiction. And it is difficult to see how to make our doubt known to Mgr Lazo. So silence and discretion about this, please!



Archbishop Lefebvre doubting not just the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration, but all the conciliar sacraments in October-1988:

Ecône, 28 oct. 1988

Very dear Mr. Wilson,

thank you very much for your kind letter. I agree with your desire to reordain conditionnaly these priests, and I have done this reordination many times.

All sacraments from the modernists bishops or priests are doubtfull now. The changes are increasing and their intentions are no more catholics.

We are in the time of great apostasy.

We need more and more bishops and priests very catholics. It is necessary everywhere in the world.

Thank you for the newspaper article from the Father Alvaro Antonio Perez Jesuit!

We must pray and work hardly to extend the kingdom of Jesus-Christ.

I pray for you and your lovely family.

Devoutly in Jesus and Mary.

Marcel Lefebvre


Information regarding the Avrille Dominican’s affirmative study on the validity of the new Rite of Episcopal Consecration, which claims their study is based on falsified texts (deliberately or indeliberately?):


Ps: As the author’s native language is not English, I would retain a little doubt as to whether his accusation and use of the word “falsification” was his intended meaning. That’s a pretty strong accusation, instead of saying the Dominicans simply made a mistake and posted erroneous information, but who knows?


Thank you for these posts. It still does not nor ever will settle the issue until as you mentioned the Magisterium speaks on this specific issue. Is there real evidence that the new rites ARE sufficient to ensure validity of the episcopacy and the priesthood? If not, are we a priori not ready to accept them because we think that it would unravel our position regarding the Crisis? Sorry I am repeating myself but I see the issues as two separate issues. Even if the new rites are valid the issue is not so much validity but the type of theology that accompanies the training of bishops and priests and their own theological outlook.

I hope the theologians will be able to hash this out one day.


Also in my admittedly uninformed mind, how do we have a mass phenomenon where most of the priests and bishops ordained after 68 are invalid (excepting the Eastern rites)? We would then have those who have jurisdiction but because they do not have valid orders do not have any means of exercising their priestly duties sacramentally. It is a very odd position. Do we err on the side of validity or invalidity? What makes more sense.

(I have edited the second sentence as it doesn’t make sense as it stood originally)


Yes, what a mess. Assuming Pope Francis is the Pope, does he have any power to consecrate and ordain? If not, would he be Pope without that power, if so, then is the new rites valid? And around it goes!!!


Well if one is to argue that the post-conciliar sacrament of Holy Orders is intrinsically invalid then Pope Francis is not a priest nor a bishop because he was ordained a priest in 1970 and a bishop later.


…and if the new episcopal rite of consecration is invalid, then BXVI is not a bishop (hence the reason the GREC-negotiating SSPX defended it/him).


I did not say that those all who doubt the validity of the New Rite of Episcopal Consecration do so based on emotions.

While some people are learned enough to prudently conclude the new Rite is doubtful, most of us are not learned enough to come to this conclusion by ourselves and accept the conclusion on the authority of others whose opinion we consider trustworthy.

So who do we consider trustworthy?

I myself consider the Archbishop the most trustworthy of all. The more I read his writings, the more I see a man who was prudent, charitable, wise, patient, balanced, moderate, experienced, etc… in short, a shepherd whose voice I recognise.

And the more I read from or about sedevacantists, the more I see bitter attitudes and fruits. Look for example at the infamous nine, who lied to the Archbishop right up to the day after they were consecrated, and then left him. What a dirty rotten thing to do! Those people are not trustworthy, and their opinion counts for nothing as far as I am concerned. As the Archbishop said about them, God cannot be with people who do such things.

So, from my experience, and as I mentioned before, many people cannot cope with the idea of a bad pope, and either they say “the pope cannot be bad, therefore whatever he says is good” and they become liberals, or they say “the pope cannot be bad, therefore he’s not the pope” and they become sedes. And this last group then usually proceed to “prove” their thesis by all means, choosing for themselves the untrustworthy teachers I mentioned before, simply because these untrustworthy teachers are able to “prove” their own opinions. They then become arm chair theologians themselves, they parrot their untrustworthy teachers and will delve into each and every argument to prove the conclusion they have already made their own based on anything but objective arguments. These people lack prudence, and more often than not I consider them to be proud, argumentative, uncharitable and emotional.

And the validity of the Rite of Episcopal Consecrations is just one example of this endless arguing by untrustworthy teachers and armchair theologians. As Obscurus said, the Church will one day decide, until then, we need the prudence to avoid anything Novus Ordo and the humility to accept that we don’t have all the answers.


Same issue as I mentioned in my previous post, except that in this case we’re not dealing with a sede who wants to “prove” his extreme right position at all costs, but with a liberal who wants to “prove” his extreme left position at all costs.


What a dirty rotten thing to do! Those people are not trustworthy” Also, Fr. Ceckada, sued the Archbishop, and summoned the Archbishop to the secular courts, which was an excommunicable offence in the 1917 code of canon law, which is the code Fr Ceckada binds himself.


If there has been anyone more publicly hostile to sedevacantism than myself, I don’t know who it would be.

I was hoping the conversation could be about the sacramental theology, or why Archbishop Lefebvre and the SSPX bishops used to entertain positive doubt about the sacramental form of the new rite of episcopal consecration (at least with respect to +de Mallerais and +Williamson), rather than discussing the moral character of the sedes.