Some (namely, the SSPX) say that Canon 844 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law is "a sacrilegious betrayal of the unity of the one, true Church, outside of which there is no salvation." Now, if you have been reading my blog, you should have gotten the idea that I am a follower of Father Feeney's theology, so when someone writes "outside (the Church) no salvation," I take notice. Does Canon 844 betray Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus? Here's the canon:
Can. 844 §1. Catholic ministers administer the sacraments licitly to Catholic members of the Christian faithful alone, who likewise receive them licitly from Catholic ministers alone, without prejudice to the prescripts of §§2, 3, and 4 of this canon, and can. 861, §2.
§2. Whenever necessity requires it or true spiritual advantage suggests it, and provided that danger of error or of indifferentism is avoided, the Christian faithful for whom it is physically or morally impossible to approach a Catholic minister are permitted to receive the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick from non-Catholic ministers in whose Churches these sacraments are valid.
§3. Catholic ministers administer the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick licitly to members of Eastern Churches which do not have full communion with the Catholic Church if they seek such on their own accord and are properly disposed. This is also valid for members of other Churches which in the judgment of the Apostolic See are in the same condition in regard to the sacraments as these Eastern Churches.
§4. If the danger of death is present or if, in the judgment of the diocesan bishop or conference of bishops, some other grave necessity urges it, Catholic ministers administer these same sacraments licitly also to other Christians not having full communion with the Catholic Church, who cannot approach a minister of their own community and who seek such on their own accord, provided that they manifest Catholic faith in respect to these sacraments and are properly disposed.
§5. For the cases mentioned in §§2, 3, and 4, the diocesan bishop or conference of bishops is not to issue general norms except after consultation at least with the local competent authority of the interested non-Catholic Church or community.
The SSPX, on their website, cite the 1917 Code of Canon Law:
1917 Code of Canon Law which governs the priests’ administration of sacraments to non-Catholics is canon 731 §2, which states:
It is forbidden to administer the sacraments of the Church to heretics or schismatics, even though they err in good faith and ask for them, unless they have first renounced their errors and been reconciled with the Church.
Of course, the 1983 Code, as with the 1917, also states:
Can. 751 Heresy is the obstinate denial or obstinate doubt after the reception of baptism of some truth which is to be believed by divine and Catholic faith; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.
But, it also states,
Can. 1364 §1. Without prejudice to the prescript of can. 194, §1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic, or a schismatic incurs a latae sententiae excommunication; in addition, a cleric can be punished with the penalties mentioned in can. 1336, §1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.
§2. If contumacy of long duration or the gravity of scandal demands it, other penalties can be added, including dismissal from the clerical state.
which results in,
Can. 1331 §1. An excommunicated person is forbidden:
1º to have any ministerial participation in celebrating the sacrifice of the Eucharist or any other ceremonies of worship whatsoever;
2º to celebrate the sacraments or sacramentals and to receive the sacraments;
3º to exercise any ecclesiastical offices, ministries, or functions whatsoever or to place acts of governance.
§2. If the excommunication has been imposed or declared, the offender:
1º who wishes to act against the prescript of §1, n. 1 must be prevented from doing so, or the liturgical action must be stopped unless a grave cause precludes this;
2º invalidly places acts of governance which are illicit according to the norm of §1, n. 3;
3º is forbidden to benefit from privileges previously granted;
4º cannot acquire validly a dignity, office, or other function in the Church;
5º does not appropriate the benefits of a dignity, office, any function, or pension, which the offender has in the Church.
Of course, if we are going to take the 1983 Code of Canon Law seriously, then we need to take all of it seriously. So, clearly, it would be an error, according to the 1983 Code, to give or receive the Sacraments to/from "non-Catholics" who "refuse submission to the Supreme Pontiff."
To establish that Canon 844 is wholly orthodox, we need only a single example of where it would apply. Let's say that you, as a faithful Catholic, were traveling in Russia, and your tour bus got into a terrible accident. Local bystanders see the accident, rush to the scene, and drag you out of the bus. You are mortally wounded. An Orthodox priest, who also witnessed the accident, rushes up to you and offers you the Last Sacraments of the Church. He asks if you are Orthodox, and you, of course, reply, "No, I am Roman Catholic." He says that he believes firmly and faithfully in all of the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church and also in Unam sanctam ecclesiam catholicam, that is, that the Pope, the Vicar of God and the Successor to Saint Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, is the Head of the universal Church. He says that while he does not have canonical standing within the Catholic Church (being Orthodox) and is, therefore, technically a "non-Catholic," he does have valid orders and is, therefore, willing to give you the Last Rites.
Should you accept his offer? According to the 1983 Code of Canon Law, this would surely be a licit circumstance to do so. Would it be licit according to the 1917 Code of Canon Law? I cannot say for sure, because I am not an expert in Latin, and the 1917 Code was promulgated entirely in Latin. No English translation of the Code exists anywhere online, but a book is available from Amazon. In my hypothetical example, however, since the Orthodox priest professes all of the Catholic Faith and accepts the Church's governance, but simply lacks canonical standing, it would, given the grave circumstances, be licit and valid to accept the final Sacraments from this priest.
So, is Canon 844 a "sacrilegious betrayal" of the One True Church? I do not believe so, if one reads the Canon literally. I do find it ironic that the SSPX, who attacks "Feeneyism" on a regular basis even to the point of denying "Feeneyites" the Sacraments of the Church, would still assert that a priest with valid orders who professes all that the Church professes and accepts Her governance could not, under extreme circumstances, administer a licit and valid Sacrament to the Catholic faithful.