Tribus Circiter is an encyclical of Pope Pius X on the Mariavites or mystic priests, a pseudo-monastic Polish society. It was given at Rome, at St. Peter's, the fifth day of April, 1906, in the third year of his Pontificate. The Mariavites later formed their own community, calling themselves the Mariavite Church.

Some priests, especially among the junior clergy in Polish dioceses, had founded, without permission from their lawful Superiors, a kind of pseudo-monastic society, known as the Mariavites or Mystic Priests. They became dependent on a certain woman, whom they proclaimed to be most holy, endowed with heavenly gifts, divinely enlightened, and many other things [1]

Relying on an alleged mandate from God, they attacked all priests and bishops who ventured to express any doubt about the sanctity and divine election of the woman, or showed any hostility to the society of the Mariavites. Two Polish priests, representing the Mariavites, Romanus Prochniewsky and Jan Kowalski, came to Rome asking for recognition, that Feliksa Kozłowska alias Maria Francesca has been made most holy by God, that she is the mother of mercy for all men called and elected to salvation by God in these days; and that all Mariavite priests are commanded by God to promote throughout the world devotion to the Most Holy Sacrament and to the Blessed Virgin Mary of Perpetual Succor, free from all restriction of ecclesiastical or human law or custom, and from all ecclesiastical and human power whatsoever..." [2]

Pope Pius X believed that these priests were blinded by ignorance and delusion. While they threw themselves at the Papal feet and expressed their firm resolution to carry out the wishes of the Holy Father. But back in Poland, they reject any obedience to the Holy See and their bishops.[3] Kowalski persists in his foolish talk and incitements to rebellion against legitimate pastors and in brazen violation of episcopal commands. [4] Therefore, should they, continue to reject the exhortations of their Polish superiors, they are to be severely dealt with." [5] The Holy Father, as a pledge of heavenly favors and in evidence of His paternal good will, bestows the Apostolic Benediction on the Polish bishops and on all the clergy and people entrusted to their care and vigilance.


  • Acta Sanctae Sedis Official documents of the Pontificate of Pope Pius X, Vatican City, encyclical Tribus Circiter 1906 39


  1. Tribus Circiter 2
  2. Tribus Circiter 5
  3. Tribus Circiter 9
  4. Tribus Circiter 10
  5. Tribus Circiter 12
la:Tribus circiter

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