It was on November 1, 1970 that Bishop François Charrière, bishop of Geneva, Lausanne and Freiburg, canonically approved the work of priestly formation that Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre had requested.
In answer to the hopes of vocations disoriented by the post-conciliar upheaval, Archbishop Lefebvre (1905-1991) thus restored the Catholic priesthood and saved the Traditional Mass.
“I think this date of November 1, 1970 is a capital event in our history,” he would later say. “It is the official birth certificate of the Society: on this day, the Church gave birth to it. The Society is a work of the Church. I for one would have hated to found anything without the approval of a bishops. It had to be of the Church.”