In another entry, there is a comment from frequent participant Jon which deserves to be showcased (my emphases):
I had a pleasant surprise yesterday. Bishop Kevin Rhoades, our bishop in Harrisburg, was on hand for a High Mass celebrated in his honor for the 2nd anniversary of our weekly indult. It was a surprise because, well, he surprised us by showing up. He’d had another event planned, but cancelled it at the last minute to be with us. Even the celebrant (Father James Fryar, FSSP), didn’t know His Excellency was going to be there until yesterday morning.
Anyway, Mass was celebrated in the bishop’s presence. He’d obviously been studying his role, as the few rubrics he needed to follow were preformed flawlessly with no assistance from his MC, who remained in my pew.
Although he didn’t give the homily, the bishop said a few words from the pulpit between the Last Gospel and the recessional. He spoke for a full ten minutes extolling the beauty of the Traditional Mass. Although he praised JPII for granting the ’88 indult, he didn’t quote him. Instead, he quoted only Pope Benedict, from both The Spirit of the Liturgy, and Sacramentum Caritatis. He then gave us his Apostolic Blessing, chanting back and forth in Latin. It was like Wednesday with the pope. Absolutely fantastic.
At the end of Mass, in the receiving line, I said to H.E. after thanking him for coming, "Having you here is almost a consolation for not getting the Motu proprio yesterday!" He laughed, and said, "No word yet, but it should be soon!"
A good man, and I’m grateful to God he’s my Ordinary. Things are looking up.
This is uplifting.
A couple things:
First, the Mass was being celebrated in the bishop’s honor. When you receive something to your benefit, rather than focus sourly on your "right" to have it, why not take the high road and thank the bishop?* As a matter of fact, on a couple occasions I have suggested to priests with traditional Mass communities a couple times a year to send a letter of thanks to the bishop expressing gratitude, unity of prayer, and even a spiritual bouquet from the children.
Second, bishops and priests who are otherwise well-disposed to the requests of people who desire older forms of the sacraments little by little close their doors and windows under the hail of snooty and downright nasty letters they receive. Sadly, the whole traditional "thing" tends to attract people who are happy only when they are unhappy. They write to bishops or say to them in person things which work to their disadvantage. It gets to a point where bishops or priests don’t even want to hear about traditional things.
Why not create a positive rapport? Why not expend some effort to help the bishop or priest smile when he sees a letter from "traditionalists", rather than groan and reach for the asprin?
As the Doctor of the Church St. Francis de Sales (+1622) told his friend Jean Pierre Camus (+1652) Bishop of Belley:
“Soyez toujours le plus doux que vous pourrez, et souvenez-vous que l’on prends plus de mouches avec une cuillerÃ©e de miel qu’avec cent barils de vinaigre… Always be as gentle as you can and remember that one catches more flies with a spoonful of honey than with a hundred barrels of vinegar."
*After confession do you take a moment to tell the priest "thank you"? It makes a difference to him!