SSPXWhen Nazi war criminal Erich Priebke died in Rome in October 2013 his funeral caused a riot.The former SS captain had been extradited from Germany, convicted and jailed for the massacre of hundreds of Italian civilians in 1944.Shortly before his own death, aged 100, Priebke affirmed his belief that the Holocaust — the Nazis’ extermination of six million Jews — was a hoax.Priebke was a monster. But he was also a baptised Roman Catholic and his family wanted a burial service in a church. The Vatican refused: holy premises were to be off-limits for a ‘manifest sinner’. Then, to widespread outrage that led to that riot, an already controversial breakaway Roman Catholic sect stepped in to give this unrepentant Nazi his dying wish.The Society of St Pius X (SSPX) is no stranger to accusations of anti-Semitism.
Its current leader, a Swiss bishop named Bernard Fellay, has recently described Jews as ‘the enemies of the Church’; one of its former bishops was, like Priebke, a Holocaust-denier.Another war criminal who was wanted for murdering Jews was eventually tracked down decades afterwards — to his refuge in a Society of St Pius X monastery [French Nazi collaborator and war criminal Paul Touvier]. [...]To many — such as the Anti-Defamation League, which fights prejudice against Jews — the SSPX is an exemplar of modern-day anti-Semitism.Yet the organisation is also a UK-registered charity.