Two days ago our friends at Rorate Cæli posted a translation of an I-Media article about the Pope and the SSPX. In the article it is reported that the CDF has handed the SSPX dossier over to the Pope for him to make a "decision" in regards to the SSPX.
There is a lot of speculation regarding this move. Many are surmising that Pope Benedict will make the decision to either make room in the Church for the SSPX or definitively close the door on them. The latter seems to be the conclusion to which many traditionalists have come. On the surface there seems to be good reason.
The SSPX only recently refused to agree with the contents of a secret doctrinal "preamble" to a larger document intended to canonically regularize the Society. The fact that the CDF hasn't re-engaged the discussion in light of this refusal seems to indicate that Cardinal Levada and company are at the end of their process, and that end of a process comes with a negative conclusion.
However, the Pope is not bound to the decisions, attitudes or theological positions of those who make up the CDF. If the report is true, what has been placed in front of the Pope are two positions: the position of the CDF and the position of the SSPX. The Pope will decide several things: 1. are the two positions reconcilable? If so, then this is positive for the regularization of the Society; 2. If not, can the two positions co-exist within the Church? If so, then once again this is positive for the regularization of the Society, as this Pope seems to be inclined toward a "big tent mentality". Only if the Pope concludes that the two positions are irreconcilable and that they cannot co-exist within the Church, then will the Pope decide against regularization. Thus, all things considered, this situation seems to indicate a more favorable disposition toward regularization than a negative one.
At any rate, how fitting that this news should come out at the beginning of Lent. May this remind us to pray fervently for the full and complete restoration of the Traditional Latin Mass, traditional Catholicism, and the Church Militant throughout this year's lenten season.