A pastor on Tridentine Mass “not a situation I want to repeat”

I was alerted by a thoughtful reader to an entry on the blog of the Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church, the first Anglican Use parish in the USA established on August 15, 1983. I have always been interested in the folks of the Anglican Use. The late pastor of my home parish in St. Paul (MN), Msgr. Richard Schuler, was the one who accompanied the first Anglican priests on their visit to Rome to see Card. Seper many years ago. But I digress.
The parish priest speaks of his experience of having the "Tridentine Use" in his "Anglican Use" parish at the request of their bishop. His experience echoes what I have seen in various places, though not all, where the older form of Mass is celebrated in the context of a parish that also has the newer form.

Here is the edited entry. My emphases.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t a happy experience for us. We made every effort to incorporate this into our Mass schedule so it would be seen as an integral part of the parish, but those who had requested the rite wished for it to be very much separate. While we provided bulletins for the Mass, including parish announcements, the Tridentine “organizers” made it a point to throw ours away and provide their own. There were attempts to engage other celebrants for the Mass without even mentioning it to me as the pastor of the parish. There were complaints to me if I used any Sacred Hosts from the tabernacle, and people would refuse Holy Communion if I did, because the Hosts “might be from the English Mass.” In following the rubrics of the Mass, I would receive complaints from some because “that’s not the way I remember it being done.” All I could do was assure them that the rubrics were being followed to the letter. The result was that fewer of those who had requested it continued to attend, and the congregation became more and more comprised of those who didn’t necessarily have an attachment to the tradition Latin Mass, but attended because the time happened to be convenient for them.

I know these things aren’t the fault of the 1962 Missal. The problems arose because of people’s attitudes and expectations. However, it’s not a situation I want to repeat unless I am told I must – but in saying that, be assured I would be immediately obedient if the archbishop told me that he wished for the motu proprio to be implemented here.

I hope our experience might be cautionary for those parishes which will be implementing the provisions of the motu proprio. There will be a temptation for some people to erect an “us and them” attitude. There may be creeping sense of exclusivity (“We attend the real Mass.”). There may be the danger that some will see their life in the parish as consisting only of taking part in the traditional Latin Mass with little or no need to be integrated into the totality of the parish.

On the other hand, perhaps our experience was unique and no other parishes will have these difficulties. Our Holy Father has granted this out of his pastoral love for the Church. We need to work and pray that it will produce the intended good fruits.

Nearly all these points are things I have experienced. I have heard people bleat about not having to be exposed to Hosts consecrated at any Mass other than a "Tridentine". I have heard people actually ask if the priest wore a biretta when blessing Holy Water. I have been hectored by people who knew very little about things, because I didn’t do something the way their priest did it when they were growing up. The list could be lengthened. However, there are some places I will not go back to. This was the experience of this good priest at Our Lady of the Atonement.

Let us take careful note of how the people at that parish separated themselves from the life of the parish. This is terribly damaging. Remember Rule #4:

4) Be engaged in the whole life of your parishes, especially in works of mercy organized by the same. If you want the whole Church to benefit from the use of the older liturgy, then you who are shaped by the older form of Mass should be of benefit to the whole Church in concrete terms.

Take this all to heart, you who are determined to have the "Tridentine Use" at your parish. Take this to heart or you will hurt a lot of people, including yourselves.

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84 Responses to A pastor on Tridentine Mass “not a situation I want to repeat”

  1. Jon says:

    Father,

    For a comedic distraction on another front, get a load of this: http://www.eriercd.org/

  2. Prof. Basto says:

    Padre,

    I agree completely. Furthermore, refusing hosts from the “Vernacular Mass” is absurd. We must all recognize that the other rites, including properly celebrated Pauline Masses, result in the confection of the Sacrament.

    ***

    Btw the regrettable liberal Rocco Palmo, of Whispers in the Loggia, seems to have violated the Holy See Press Office embargo. He published two paragraphs of the MP. What a shame.

  3. Bruno Maria says:

    Fortunately I belong to a Parish that has “old” and “new” and things seem to flow smoothly. It seems to me, though, that bad choices have put the Church in this competitive liturgical state. First, if the directives found in Sacrosanctum Concilium were carried out properly, there wouldn’t be “a banal, on the spot product” to cause many of us longing for the old rite; and I dare say, there might not be any separatist groups either. Second, even with the Paul VI missal (a.k.a. John Paul II missal) being implemented, if the Pius V missal (a.k.a. John XXIII missal) were not virtually suppressed because of it, the liturgical battlefied would be relatively quiet. Third, if the bishops had followed the advice of Pope John Paul II and his Indult by applying the old rite more generously… well, you get the picture.

    In many cases it is the independents and sedevacantists that have planted the seed that the Novus Ordo Consecration is invalid, thus, there are these unfortunate situations that Fr. Z has shared with us here.

  4. James says:

    How ironic this happened at an Anglican Use parish. IMO, the Anglican Use is as fine as a mass in the vernacular gets. The Tridentine cultists at that parish should have been moved to a more typical American “Novus Ordo” parish as penance and to learn about the virtue of charity. Sometimes I prefer to attend the Anglican Use parish in my area over the indult parish so that I am spared the carping about Cardinal O’Malley and the “Conciliar Church” and the “liberal” Pope Benedict at the after-mass coffee. There is so little joy in being part of an ever-grumbling “remnant.”

  5. Prof B. If he has credentials, he ought to be reported to the Holy See Press Office for violating the embargo. If he does not have credentials, perhaps he obtained a copy … in some other way. If he only has the little piece of text, he should keep it to himself. Anyway you look at this it is shameful.

  6. James says:

    What else can be expected from a kid just out of adolescence?

  7. finegan says:

    “Sometimes I prefer to attend the Anglican Use parish in my area over the indult parish so that I am spared the carping about Cardinal O’Malley and the “Conciliar Church” and the “liberal” Pope Benedict at the after-mass coffee.”

    Perhaps you should stop attending the after-mass coffee!

  8. Paul, South midlands UK says:

    One reason I am so keen to see the MP is that the Rite of Bl John XXIII is for ALL catholics who want it and should become as integral a part of parish life as Benediction and Blessed Sacrament processions. While we must thank and pray for those who have fought for this, it is now time to bring the rite into the mainstream and disassociate it from far right eccentrics some of whom appear to be in a state of personal schism.

  9. Cerimoniere says:

    I doubt he’s stupid enough to violate the embargo directly. More likely, he’s profiting from someone else’s violation of the pontifical secret, but as Father says, he is surely participating in the guilt of doing so himself. I suppose this probably means that the bishops have now received their advance copies…

  10. Pater OSB says:

    Dear Fr. Z.,
    The NLM has posted Whispers’ paragraphs – perhaps you could persuade them not to be sucked into someone else’s disobedience?
    Pax

  11. Paul, South midlands UK says:

    From online translating what he’s printed the text he quotes seems to consist of the preamble and dosent as far as I can see reveal anything noteworthy.

    He makes a couple of claims about the three year review and the implementation date but as far as I can see neither are backed up by any quoted text of the MP.

    From the tone of his blog I get the feeling that tablet readers won’t like it much.

  12. Dan O says:

    Pater OSB

    Nevermind the NLM, it is posted here at wdtprs.com under another entry.

  13. Jeff Miller says:

    That fits in with two rules that Fr. Philip N. Powell, OP added to your list.

    6) Do not expect that every priest in the Church is ready, willing, and able to celebrate the TLM. Most of us have had no training in the mechanics of the TLM. No training in the theology of the TLM. No training in the spirituality of the TLM. In fact, most of us know pretty much nothing about the TLM. We will need time. AND, quite frankly, we will need $$$ to get trained, so if you want the TLM celebrated, get ready to help finance the summer’s worth of work it will take to get us post-VC2 priests up to snuff.

    7) Do not assume that b/c a priest says no to celebrating the TLM that he is a heretic or that he is opposed to the TLM or that he is simply holding out on you. I’ve already heard folks gearing up to use the M.P. as a “test” of orthodoxy or loyalty, e.g. “We’ll see if Fr. X will celebrate the TLM like the pope says to.” This sentiment is exactly what the “spirit of Vatican Two” liturgical professionals are predicting, by the way.

    http://hancaquam.blogspot.com/2007/06/fr-z-and-fr-philip-on-rules-of.html

  14. Kris says:

    I think such examples only point to the now unbridled permitted interference by the laity – no matter which end of the spectrum you may like to find yourself. We now have decades where pastors have accepted the latest imagined “improvement” in the new liturgy by committees, sister administrators, choirs, etc. Somehow that hasn’t at least outwardly seemed to have been so annoying to them all these years. Now, another group of personally “empowered” laity want to do the same from the other side. Pastors have got to start taking charge, show some educated leadership, the heck with hurt “feelings” if they tell people to butt out! And people better learn some respect for Church teachings themselves or join another church more to their liking and manipulations.

  15. Vincentius says:

    I’ve been a parishioner in a mixed rite parish for 10 yrs. although there are a few hard liners,(none to the extreme described above) they are in the small minority. There is actually a fair amount of mixing of the parish groups often w/ cross attendance of rites and almost all the sodalities are comprised of people who attend different rites. Ironically ,almost all parents have requested old rite baptisms ( we have a beautiful narthex and domed baptistry that fit the old rite well) and we have a group of recent African immigrants who now prefer the old rite for their funerals.( so much for non-Europeans being averse to Latin) We had 14 converts this yr and our pastor used the several step old rite of initiation ( replete w/ rites of exorcism. )though they were baptized and confirmed in a new rite vigil. I think this cross influence is what the Holy father is hoping for ( and he and we pray for)and I think when you’re in mainstream parishes, there’ll only be a few extreme ideologs on each end of the spectrum

  16. Romulus says:

    Fortunately I belong to a Parish that has “old” and “new” and things seem to flow smoothly.

    Bruno Maria: It’s the same at our parish. There the situation is an unusually happy one: the church itself is old (by American standards) and historic. It enjoys loyal and important support from the laity, and has done so for many years even though it’s a downtown parish with not many Catholics dwelling within its geographical boundaries. The parish has never stopped offering at least one Latin Mass weekly: after the Council, the 9.30 Sunday Mass was the Novus Ordo in Latin, which continued till the indult became available in the 80s. Call it a hermeneutic of continuity if you like; it has never been an Odd Couple matter of sulking beyond-trad malcontents under the same roof as AmChurch self-worshippers. Worshipping there my entire adult life, I sometimes forget how hard it can be elsewhere.

    I agree with the calls to honor the embargo of the MP until its appointed hour. NLM should back away from Rocco’s bad example.

  17. Kris: unbridled permitted interference by the laity … latest imagined “improvement” in the new liturgy by committees, sister administrators, choirs, etc. .. another group of personally “empowered” laity want to do the same from the other side. Pastors have got to start taking charge,

    You raised here an excellent point. You can go into the ditch on either side of the road, left or right. Either way you are in the ditch. Time and again, laypeople on the right will do exactly what they claim to dislike about people on the left. They just do it in the other ditch.

  18. Prof. Basto says:

    Cerimoniere,

    While I completely agree that it is shameful to violate the press embargo, there is a thecnicality here. You mention “pontifical secret”. There is a difference between “pontifical secret” and “Bulletin of the Holy See Press Office embargo”.

    The prelates who went to the meeting in the Vatican about the MP received its text under “pontifical secret”; they are bound to it either by specific oath or by a command of secrecy from superior authority. The principle of ecclesiastical obedience is involved. Violation of that secret, formerly known as “secret of the Holy Office”, is a canonical crime, and in that it is comparable to violation of the Conclave’s vow of secrecy, in that it requires a just canonical penalty (formerly latae sententiae excommunication).

    Violation of the Bulletin of Holy See Press Office under embargo, on the other hand, is not a canonical crime. The Bulletin under embargo involves an agreement between the accredited person and the Holy See Press Office, whereby the HSPO provides the media professional (journalists, TV stations, agencies, newspapers) with certain texts in advance (drafts of speeches, homilies, texts), so that news professionals can prepare their reports, posts, comments, etc in advance, with the understanding that the text will not be released, and that the accredited person will not make use of the advance information received, until the period of embargo ends and the text is made public.

    Several days after the prelates who came to Rome received the text of the MP under pontifical secret, it must have also been released under embargo to media professionals, as the publication date approached (major documents are usually released three days in advance to the media professionals with embargo credentials).

    Thus, while Rocco Palmo can have received his copy from a prelate who went to Rome to attend past week’s meeting and there received the text under pontifical secret, it is more likely that he received the text from someone in the press who violated the rules of embargo. It is not a canonical crime as a violation of the pontifical secret would be, but it is still shameful.

  19. RBrown says:

    If I might paraphrase Maritain’s insight: Those of the Left don’t think that substance exists. Those of the Right don’t think that accidents exist.

  20. greg says:

    The pastor of Our Lady of Atonement said,

    “I hope our experience might be cautionary for those parishes which will be implementing the provisions of the motu proprio. There will be a temptation for some people to erect an “us and them” attitude. There may be creeping sense of exclusivity (“We attend the real Mass.”). There may be the danger that some will see their life in the parish as consisting only of taking part in the traditional Latin Mass with little or no need to be integrated into the totality of the parish.”

    This notion of “us and them” cuts both ways. Don’t be surprised if some N.O. devotees disparage the TLM folks as “those people” (a term that’s used a lot on the blogs) and “schismatics.” Everyone seems to be expecting the TLM crowd to act like clods; perhaps there’ll be enough of uncharitable behavior to go around.

  21. Brian says:

    “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the Motu scoop of the century, and lose his own soul?”

  22. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    Excellent issue to raise, Father Z., about the Anglican Use parish in San Antonio (which I have had the pleasure of visiting, as also the parish in Arlington, outside Fort Worth).

    The pastor at Our Lady of the Atonement raises an excellent issue, and one deserving of serious reflection by many Catholics of a more “traditional” bent.

  23. RBrown says:

    I hope our experience might be cautionary for those parishes which will be implementing the provisions of the motu proprio. There will be a temptation for some people to erect an “us and them” attitude.

    Actually, the “us and them attitude” began some years ago under Paul VI, whose papacy marginalized anyone wanting Latin liturgy, much less mass according to the 1962 Missal.

  24. ThomasMore1535 says:

    I’m so glad this has been brought up. It is exactly this kind of crap (my apologies for being vulger, but there’s no other way to put it) that has given the Old Rite a bad name for so long. I am, quite frankly, disgusted by the attempts of those who claim to love Christ so much set up an “us vs. them” mentality.

    Personally, I think that the parish of St. John Cantius in Chicago is the best example of integrating the two rites. On Sunday, they first have a Novus Ordo Latin Mass ad orientem, followed by a Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form. This is the goal we should be attempting to reach.

    If refusing to receive communion in hosts consecrated at a Novous Ordo Mass isn’t being hyppocrital and Pharisical (sp?), I don’t know what is.

  25. Animadversor says:

    What else can be expected from a kid just out of adolescence?

    James, it is not surprising that that such “kids” behave so, but the first step towards seeing better behavior is to expect more from them.

  26. Alex says:

    I personally find it understandable that Roman Catholics from the USA would distrust an Anglican Use indult for a liturgy according to the Cranmerian rite with some minor alterations and the “for all men” included into the sacramental form.

    The tone of the reaction of this Anglican Use priest and the generalizing of “the Tridentine people” is totally inappropriate, so I have to disagree with you Father Z.

    This is not about complaining about silly comments of nostalgic laymen wanting an Irish-style 1900 Low Mass without Holy Communion for the lay faithful, but very much about criticizing “the Tridentine people” at a moment they are medially vulnerable.

    And while we should engage in works of corporal and spiritual mercy in our parishes, and very much keep in social contact, there is often a moral obligation to shun certain liturgical actions.

    Again, I do understand Irish or Italian Roman Catholics in the USA are critical and quite harsh towards the adapted Cranmer rite (Anglican Use) with the N.O.M. words of institution inserted.

    We should show pastoral concern towards simplistic or ignorant or exaggeratedly critical people and not like this formerly Anglican preacher and present Anglican Use Catholic priest, spread generalisations in a vital time in the media.

  27. I agree with this post, 100%. My diocese has a parish that celebrates the 1962 rite daily. On Sundays they have three Masses: the 1962 rite, the Pauline rite in Latin, and the Pauline rite in English. I have attended the Latin Pauline Mass four times. The liturgy was beautiful and the people were decidedly unfriendly.

    The Sign of Peace is part of the Pauline rite. The rubrics are quite clear:

    Deinde, pro opportunitate, diaconus, vel sacerdos, subiungit:
    Offerte vobis pacem.
    Et omnes, iuxta locorum consuetudines, pacem, communionem et caritatem sibi invicem significant.

    In other words, the celebrant has the option of omitting it, but if the celebrant does choose to say “Offerte vobis pacem”, the people do not have the option to ignore this Latin imperative.

    Yet two of the four times I attended, no one around me was willing to offer me peace. The other two times, only one was. And several of the folks wouldn’t even LOOK at me, when I looked at them and smiled.

    I understand that spending 15 minutes on the pax and giving high-fives to everyone in the church is an abuse. As Fr. Z said, this is falling into the ditch on the left-side of the road. But it would be great if the folks rememembered what they look like to outsiders. Women in veils, white couples with six children (all of the girls with hair down to their waists), people wearing ties on a Sunday morning…. to an American Catholic under 40, this yells out “These people are different than you!”, and to one over 40, this yells out “These people are stuck in the past!” In other words, visitors are going to be uneasy entering this church. Is the Christian response to avoid eye contact with visitors and act unfriendly? I thought that Luther was the one who dropped the Epistle of James from the Bible — not us!

    In my personal opinion, for the MP to truly have a powerful affect on our church today, it will be necessary for the 1962 rite to become sufficiently well attended that this insular “we don’t like liberals or women without veils” crowd becomes DILUTED by the influx of newcomers.

    Or maybe we’ll just have to have two different kinds of indult parishes: the ones that celebrate the 1962 missal for Catholics who thank God for ALL the liturgies of the church, and the ones that specifically print in their bulletins “We celebrate the 1962 Mass, but we only want parishioners who were traditional before traditional was cool.”

    Sorry if I sound rude, but I honestly believe that the greatest two dangers that the traditional Mass will face in the next few years are (1) efforts to sabotage it by dissident liturgists and (2) the attitude of certain traditionalist subcultures, which appear [on the exterior] to demonstrate a severe lack of hospitality, or worse. I’m not saying # 2 is worse than # 1, but I think folks on this blog are already very well aware of the dangers of # 1.

    [As a side nitpick, however, shouldn’t it be “Offerte vobis invicem pacem”? “Offerte vobis pacem” looks like “Offer peace to yourselves.” Maybe the folks in the church were classical Latinists and the reason they didn’t offer peace was that they were following the letter of the request, and each was inwardly offering peace to himself.]

  28. The snippet has been removed from NLM.

  29. I plan on integrating the TLM into the parish’s liturgical life and if I get some malcontents on the right they can just leave.I will not even listen to their gripes (especially since I will be taking advantage of some of the provisions allowed by EcclesiaDei Commission) because I will not allow their their weird rantings to ruin it for most of the people who have been denied it for 40 years. By the way I saw on the web a question asking why there had NOT been an embargo on the MP as there was on the Letter to the Chinese.

  30. BobP says:

    Wasn’t one of the post-Vatican II desires that
    Hosts used for communion should be consecrated
    at that particular Mass? Maybe it’s not a matter
    of what’s valid or not but why aren’t enough
    Hosts consecrated at the TLM? Or the NOM for
    that matter? Why ask for more trouble when we
    already have enough?

  31. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    While I welcome the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, I still wait for the publication…promised in 1971…of the last volume of the Liturgia Horarum. I fear I may never see that day.

  32. BobP: They are not trying to uphold the ideal that Host for Communion be consecrated at the Mass wherein they are distributed. They doubt that the consecration in the Novus Ordo Mass in English was valid.

  33. greg says:

    “In other words, the celebrant has the option of omitting it, but if the celebrant does choose to say “Offerte vobis pacem”, the people do not have the option to ignore this Latin imperative.”

    Are saying that it is “imperative” (i.e. mandatory) that the Faithful assisting at a Pauline (i.e., Novus Ordo) Mass exchange the Sign of Peace? If so, that’s the first I’ve of heard of it. Does that mean it’s a sin not to do so? Does that mean there should be enforcement of some kind (you WILL shake hands!)? What if I have a bad head cold and don’t want to pass on my germs to others?

  34. Dr. F: I still wait for the publication…promised in 1971…of the last volume of the Liturgia Horarum.

    All four volumes are available for many years now.

  35. FOLKS: Let’s not go down rabbit holes here.

  36. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    No, Father, I meant the “fifth” volume, mentioned in Notitiae numerous times, which exists in proof form, some of whose contents were published by Notitiae in 1996 (Holy Week sections)…the volume with the full 2-yr. cycle for Scripture readings and the second cycle of patristic readings, psalm prayers, etc.

  37. Alex, I am sorry to hear that you “find it understandable that Roman Catholics from the USA would distrust an Anglican Use indult for a liturgy according to the Cranmerian rite with some minor alterations and the “for all men” included into the sacramental form.”

    At the time of our conversions, we simply asked if it would be possible for “certain elements” of our liturgical heritage to be brought with us (especially since many of our prayers are rather elegant translations of ancient Latin prayers). A complete liturgical use was what was granted — far more than was expected. Because it was the Holy Father who offered it, we were delighted to receive it as our own.

    I hope those who distrust us will reconsider. On August 15th it will be the 24th anniversary of my ordination to the Sacred Priesthood. I have loved every minute of my nearly quarter of a century of Catholic priesthood, and hope I have not given occasion for harsh judgement or distrust from my fellow Catholics. In fact, our parish’s willingness to include a Mass using the 1962 Missal was our honest attempt to express a fraternal love to fellow Catholics, brothers and sisters in the same household of faith.

  38. Fr. Phillips: Ad multos annos! God love you and your flock and may He bless you abundantly. You have given up a lot to be in unity with Peter. May he reward you a hundred fold, as I am sure He already has. We gain more when losing much for God’s will. I see you all as helping enormously in the long battle for liturgical excellence. This is one reason why you were not all so welcomed by some in some places.

    Keep up the good work!

  39. Ryan says:

    Ok, let’s not all go totally berserker on Rocco Palmo just yet. I’ve been in public relations for years, and embargoing documents and press releases is hardly a matter of natural law. The treatment of press matters is not exactly written on our hearts by the Holy Spirit.

    Yes, his leaks show bad taste, and possibly a betrayal of a confidence although we don’t know that for sure. But I can assure you, such things are hardly reserved for the young, despite what the doddering oldies might tell themselves about the good ol’ days.

    Nevertheless, one who violates an embargo takes the risk of not being included on sensitive matters the next time around. That’s a risk an embargo violator takes, and he knows it. That’s the natural consequence. All this wailing and gnashing of teeth over leaking a document that everyone is already talking about anyway seems a wee bit like an over reaction, and it is really only great press for the Motu Proprio anyway.

  40. BobP says:

    The Vatican itself has been trying to overturn
    the “for all” form of Consecration for how long
    now. Certainly that can only add doubt to its
    validity, of which many books have been written
    about as well. If the Pope wants to change all the
    vernaculars to “for many” there has to be a
    good reason for it, more than just an exercise
    of conformity. I don’t think this is a sede or
    a Novus Ordo validity issue necessarily. It may
    be one of moral certitude, though. Even in the
    most Protestant of Bibles, Christ doesn’t say
    “for you and for all.”
    of moral certitude.

  41. David Nelson says:

    I would agree completely with these comments, but the conflict is very understandable. It is upsetting to watch communion in the hand using only one hand, the offering of peace in which people wander from pew to pew, the sport shorts and t-shirts, etc. There are, unfortunately two radically different sets of expectations and if they are to be combined in one parish, it is problematic. I would hope that the return of the old rite will also bring along with it a return to a decorum in Church that has been lacking.

  42. James says:

    Fr. Christopher,

    Some of us love the Anglican Use. I am blessed to live near one such congregation near Boston. They are a true asset to the Church, and the glorious liturgy is a true model for the reform of the modern Roman rite. I pray that there may be many more Anglican Use congregations.

  43. James says:

    Fr. Christopher,

    Some of us love the Anglican Use. I am blessed to live near one such congregation near Boston. They are a true asset to the Church, and the glorious liturgy is a true model for the reform of the modern Roman rite. I pray that there may be many more Anglican Use congregations.

  44. swmichigancatholic says:

    Lawrence, David, et al

    Catholics are going to have to get over reading politics into everything. Someone above said it started in the reign of PPVI and they’re right. It’s a bad habit and a trust problem. But it doesn’t have to be perpetuated.

    People can wear good clothes to mass if they want to, even ties. And little girls sometimes have long hair, even groups of little girls. It’s okay for them to have long hair. Veils are pretty and very Catholic too, even when only a few ladies wear them. I might get one myself; they’re pretty and they‘re modest. Only a few ladies will have sandals on too, or orange blouses or whatever. Jeans are fine too as long as netherparts are covered up. I would say if St. Peter’s allows them, we probably ought to, as well.

    When people don’t smile maybe they’re thinking of something else or they don’t see you. Not everyone likes to shake hands. If they don’t touch you, maybe they have a cold sore, carpal tunnel or feel tired. It’s possible. If people want to shake hands til their fingers fall off, you don’t have to accept but you don’t have to be mean either. They shouldn’t expect you to keep going if you don’t want to. (I hope they don’t treat people at the office that way. I’ll bet they don’t.) Priests should feel free to leave the handshaking out sometimes without listening to the handshake people complain. The documents allow it. Or they could leave it in.

    Some people kneel. Some people can’t. Some people don’t.

    So what if some people like Dorothy Day and some like Padre Pio? As long as we all assent to Catholic doctrine and the pope’s teaching, what difference does it make? (And yes, those that are outside catholic doctrine & the pope’s teaching ON BOTH SIDES are having bigger problems. We all know that. It’s definitional of being Catholic. Admit it & chalk that kind of bad behavior up for what it is. The world is full of bad behavior. It shouldn‘t be a shock, nor should it be something to emulate. But you know this.)

    Liturgists, music ministers and so on may expect you to behave in a certain way. If they’re not nuts you probably should, but if they ask you to do something loony, ugly, irreligious, trendy or stupid, you shouldn’t. You probably know the difference.

    We are not automatons. When people don’t agree 100% on superficial things it’s not going to kill us. It doesn’t take one thing away, not one thing. Let’s cut each other some slack, get out of polarized lockstep, and try to get along ON BOTH SIDES. It would certainly help.

    In addition, some of us are going to go to the Mass of 1962 more often; some of us to the Mass of 1969. Some of us will go to both and shouldn’t have to hear about it all the time from aggravated partisans.

    Probably it’s more important to keep track of my own foibles than everybody else’s anyway. I can do something about mine, and if I miss heaven it will be my own sins that did it, not somebody else’s.

  45. Fr Martin Fox says:

    Oh, and doesn’t refusing the Holy Eucharist because you don’t believe it IS the Holy Eucharist — when, indeed, it IS…isn’t that awfully disrespectful of the Holy Eucharist, to say the least?

    Any group such as this that did that in my parishes would be finding another site instantly.

  46. techno_aesthete says:

    Dear Fr. Philips,

    May I offer a contrary experience? The lack of charity that you speak of cuts both ways. I am part of a somewhat conservative, mainstream parish in th USA. We have had permission from the local ordinary for a Sunday and Holy Day TLM for a little over five years. Several months after the TLM had begun to be offered, the traditional Mass attendees wanted to thank the established parishioners for adding us to their parish. We ran the idea of an All Saints’ Day party by the pastor and he said he would ask the parish council. He reported back to us that they said they had never had an All Saints’ Day party and it was OK with them. Well, All Saints’ Day came and it turned out that the established parishioners had organized their own party at the same time! Not only did the pastor not attend our party, but he stopped by to say that the other party needed more chairs and took a few chairs with him back to the other party. That really hurt, but we turned the other cheek.

    Some of the established parishioners attempted to get rid of the TLM by contacting the auxiliary bishop/chancery officials and telling them that we were having unapproved Masses and “interfering in other parish activities” (?). When the dust settled, the appropriate documentation was provided showing that we indeed had permission for a TLM on Holy Days of Obligation. The bulletin coordinator did not include our Mass in the regular schedule or our events in the bulletin announcements for a long time. It was as if we didn’t really exist. One time when an event was included with contact information, the phone number was inaccurate. The bulletin coordinator was contacted with the correct phone number and when the next week’s bulletin was published, the inaccurate number was still in print. The first time could have been an honest mistake, but the second?

    Many of those who regularly attend the TLM have registered in the parish and some have belonged to the parish for most of their lives. Some of them have been told directly that they do not belong to the parish. It appears that some see the parish as a social club and not as a Catholic church. I could continue, but I’m sure you get the picture. Having said all of that, the situation is beginning to improve, and we shall persevere.

    In conclusion, everyone needs to be more charitable.

  47. swmichigancatholic says:

    It is Father, unless you’ve seen someone massively botch the consecration intentionally, like I have once. It’s very rare and not what the poster above was speaking of.

    Sign unseen, the presumption is always one of validity, because the Church wishes us to have the Eucharist and a priest is presumed to have faculties. I would walk into your church and receive the Eucharist any day without question. I travel a lot and indeed, I never hesitate.

  48. Brian says:

    Comment by Fr Martin Fox “I realize the Vatican may not work the same way, but I wouldn’t be shocked if they did. It’s a legit tool in public relations, and I would be very happy to discover the Holy See had some savvy pr types…wouldn’t you?”

    Does anybody think the Holy Father asked Rocco to leak this document for him ahead of July 7th?

    Let’s have a show of hands.

    Anyone?

    OK, IF the Holy Father did not desire Rocco to leak this for him prior to July 7, who here thinks it was leaked by someone who had the best interests of the Holy Father, and the successful implementation of the Motu Proprio, at heart?

    Anyone?

  49. With all the delay in issuing the MP-“subito”(last December),”imminent”(January),”in a few days(April)”in May”(May)-and the announcemnet “at Pentecost” of the Letter to the Chinese that was released a week ago,-not to mention the announced and then delayed Exhortation,I doubt the Vatican Press office has savvy let alone competent types.Granted the only real blunder they officially made was announcing the Pentecost datebut I think they are in the same league as the Italian mail.

  50. swmichigancatholic says:

    Oh, Fr. Mcafee, that’s low.

  51. M. Dean says:

    At this time of great rejoicing, can we not pray and act for true reconciliation, knowing that charity overcomes all bad feeling, and mostly in the one who is acting on charity? As we go forward, let us go forward with hope and not fear. Thank you, Most Holy Trinity and the Theotokos, for the coming burst of conversions and growth in personal holiness that will result from the attendance at the Tridentine Mass. Let us all pray in thanksgiving, which overcomes all fears.

  52. techno_aesthete:

    What a sad experience.

    I hope now that the motu proprio is a reality, there will be an increased tolerance for the true and legitimate diversity as it is found in the many Rites of the Church.

  53. Mike says:

    Alex,

    I understand you being upset by these generalisations. But context makes a big difference. If this was printed in NCR or America, it could be seen as a transparent attempt to attack traditionalists. Eg “even this conservative priest thinks they’re all nutbags!”

    But we’re in a forum where nearly all people have some “traditionalist” sympathies, where the MP and the Tridentine Mass are welcomed. With that in mind, I think it’s far more appropriate to consider the kinds of abberations that we are more likely be tempted towards, than those which tempt other people. Indeed, “pastoral concern” demands it. Like it or not, there really are enough people in Tridentine Mass congregations who take these attitudes, and if we are to make any kind of an impression on the Church with this MP, those attitudes will hinder us. Fr Z is therefore right to show this kind of leadership – and it is the right time for it.

    We’re all well aware of the many liturgical abuses going around, and dwelling on them here would not be nearly as edifying.
    Perhaps it would be if we were writing in NCR or America. But that won’t be happening soon.

  54. Jacob says:

    I need Press Office credentials. Father, could you help me apply? ;)

  55. boniface says:

    I know I am having a meeting with my priest tomorrow about preparing for the transition (I am the DRE). I will keep you posted on how it goes.

  56. Joshua says:

    In the weekly Mass here where we have the 1962 Mass (or Dominican) we had the opposite problem. The Archdiocese had required the parish to hold the Mass and the pastor opposes. They had a pastor for a short while that was friendly (for instance he helped us fix the organ and supported us doing higher liturgies and not just low Masses). He also let us get involved with selecting the priests who say it (none of the priests there want to or can, and the ones they had been getting were doing it begrudgingly and were messing up the rubrics in a rather flagrant manner).

    More to the point, he made an effort to integrate us in the parish (for instance having a barbecue postponed until after our Mass so we could attend, rather than during when it would actually disrupt our Mass). My impression was that most of the congregants were well disposed, though I know we have had some sour grapes (for a while we did some chant during low Mass because the priests weren’t ready for high Masses but we could do the chants and several people complained saying that it was a “grave violation”). We even had complainers about bell ringing.

    The new pastor is explicitly hostile. Doesn’t help

  57. Rose says:

    I think it is time to apply the principles in the Letter to the Chinses Catholics to th
    to the state of liturgical relations among the faithful in America. Time to heal the division
    the divisions and move forward. Truth and reconciliation.

  58. Shawn Tribe says:

    Re: The appearance of the two paragraphs of Summorum Pontifcum on the NLM. I was away for most of the afternoon and part of the evening. One of my co-bloggers was, understandly, excited about the MP and probably didn’t realize the embargo that was asked by the Holy See to allow the document to spread as it wished before public release.

    As soon as I saw it there, I removed it as the NLM would never intentionally disrespect any matter that the Holy See explicitly wanted quiet about.

    I hope that explains to folks the series of factors by which that rather innocently occurred.

    Shawn Tribe
    “Editor” of The New Liturgical Movement

  59. Serafino says:

    The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass according to the Anglican usage at Our Lady of Atonement is glorious! That anyone would usurp the authority of the Pastor and attempt to procure the services of another priest for the Tridentine Mass is beyond belief.

    I am willing to bet, that the real reason for seeking another priest for the TLM has more to do with the fact that the Pastor is married. Of course, as we all know, even IF you are validly ordained transubstantiation will never “work” unless you a celibate!

    Some of these off the wall traditionalists are really Protestants who like Latin and incense. They really need to take a course in basic sacramental theology.

    So sad, that the Most Holy Eucharist which is meant to unite us, has divided us. The Evil One must be having a field day.

  60. swmichigancatholic says:

    The evil one has been having a field day all over the place for 40+ years, Serafino. All this division and craziness has probably had him shaking with glee the whole time.

  61. Paul says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me at all if Fr. Z too has a copy of the Motu Proprio and is putting the finishing touches on his usual incisive analysis and commentary of the document while respecting the embargo. (Not to mention comparing his English translation of the Latin MP with the Vatican translation.) I mean we haven’t had a Podcazt for what, a week and a half now? I’m into the reruns of the reruns. He’s up to something, I’m sure of it.

    (Written with tongue firmly in cheek. Fortunately I don’t type with my tongue.)

  62. Paul: I’m into the reruns of the reruns.

    LOL!! That is a sad life you have.

  63. John says:

    I remember this debate over 15 years ago now where people wouldn’t go to communion at an Indult if Fr. went to the Tabernacle for the other chalice. It always struck me as odd that if a priest didn’t want to consecrate the hosts validly it would be much easier to do so at a Tridentine Mass where he doesn’t really need to say the words of consecration out loud. Really he could just sing Kumbaya for a minute and then elevate the host. Who would really know the difference?

  64. RBrown says:

    The Vatican itself has been trying to overturn
    the “for all” form of Consecration for how long
    now. Certainly that can only add doubt to its
    validity, of which many books have been written
    about as well.
    Comment by BobP

    Although I am in favor of the pro multis, the use of for all has nothing to do with validity.

    To those who think it does affect validity, I once again refer them to Maritain’s nice summary: “Those on the Right think there is no such thing as accidents.”

  65. Shawn: You are a man of parts.

  66. B Knotts says:

    Undoubtedly, these sorts of problem will occur. It will, of course, fall on priests to explain, and explain, and explain why these attitudes are contrary to what ought to be the proper attitude.

    Patience will be an important virtue for priests and laity alike.

    Also, expectations should be realistic. It is unlikely that every parish, or even most parishes, will offer the TLM. We should be thankful that it will be at least more available than under the current arrangement. And, priests should keep in mind that there are people who feel that they have been wronged these many years, and will need some extra help regaining their ability to trust.

    Please pray at this time for the Holy Father, our bishops, and our priests, and for charity from both “sides” of the liturgical situation.

  67. Boniface says:

    Yes, the situation described by the ‘Anglican Use’ priest is appalling. I have only come across similar sentiments once, though from a rather immature altar boy, probably influenced by parents or friends. Such views are really unacceptable, but, mercifully rare. They should be borne in mind but not generalised too much. You have a great, and informative website Father. Thank you for your rememberance in prayer today (Friday). Pray for my vocation and those of fellow religious and aspirants to the priesthood and religious life. Many thanks. Oremus pro invicem !

  68. There were complaints to me if I used any Sacred Hosts from the tabernacle, and people would refuse Holy Communion if I did, because the Hosts “might be from the English Mass.

    This is what happened to the Indult Community at St. Robert Bellarmine’s in Miami and it was the reason I quit going there. It caused a split in the community and a good priest suffered.

  69. Bailey Walker says:

    Father Z: I suspect that Dr. Lee Fratantuono is referring the the “Optional Lectionary” referenced in No. 161 of the General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours. I, for one, would welcome such a volume. However, a more faithful and pleasing English translation of the Liturgia Horarum (especially the hymns!) would also be a very excellent thing. Oremus pro invicem!

  70. “How ironic this happened at an Anglican Use parish. IMO, the Anglican Use is as fine as a mass in the vernacular gets. The Tridentine cultists at that parish should have been moved to a more typical American “Novus Ordo” parish as penance and to learn about the virtue of charity. Sometimes I prefer to attend the Anglican Use parish in my area over the indult parish so that I am spared the carping about Cardinal O’Malley and the “Conciliar Church” and the “liberal” Pope Benedict at the after-mass coffee. There is so little joy in being part of an ever-grumbling “remnant.””

    God save us from joyless Christians!

    As a tradition-minded individual, I have tended to swing in tradition-minded circles over the years. I have met some of the most gracious, cultured and interesting individuals and families.

    I have also met people who are three marshmallow shapes shy of a full box of Lucky Charms.

    The Church is God’s hospital. People come in with all sorts of wounds, some of them self-inflicted. I sincerely hope that other tradition-minded individuals take to heart Father Z’s rules and not replicate the experience at Our Lady of Atonement.

    I often wonder if some of the spirit of “rubrical correctness” is not the inheritance of an exaggerated (and perhaps overlegislated) Tridentine Catholicism, far removed even from the authentic, reforming ethos of the council fathers of Trent. Someone should undertake a study of this marvellously successful reform council and its liturgy to demonstrate Vatican II’s continuity with this stream of renewal, at least in intent and on paper.

    I have always felt that an authentic renewing Tridentine traditionalism would embrace the best in Catholic Social Teaching (ala Leo XIII) and Catholic Action (focused especially on the works of mercy and the integral role of the family) combined with a passionate love for the Jesus Christ and the traditional worship of the Church. (Again, the Salesians and Don Bosco and his “reason, religion and kindness” representing something of an ideal model, IMHO.) Essentially, replace any remnants of cultic sanctimony with authentic sanctity. To me, this would make it an unstoppable force for good in the Church and society.

    Pax Romana,

    Gordo the Byzantine

  71. Paul, South midlands UK says:

    I note that “Whispers in the Loggia” is making more claims about the MP as well as what seems to me cheap remarks about the embargo. I further note that said Blog dosen’t seem to allow comments on his posts. How very Liberal.

  72. RBrown says:

    Some of us love the Anglican Use. I am blessed to live near one such congregation near Boston. They are a true asset to the Church, and the glorious liturgy is a true model for the reform of the modern Roman rite. I pray that there may be many more Anglican Use congregations.
    Comment by James

    No doubt it’s better than the liturgical gruel (using sugar in place of salt) commonly served at most parishes.

    On the other hand, if it ain’t Latin, then it ain’t no model.

  73. Scott says:

    “…the congregation became more and more comprised of those who didn’t necessarily have an attachment to the tradition Latin Mass, but attended because the time happened to be convenient for them.”

    I don’t think this is a bad thing at all! Isn’t this the point of the MP, at least in small part: to make it more “mainstream” and expose everyday Catholics to the beauty of the classic liturgy?

  74. Scott: The whole thing is unfortunate because of the division caused.

  75. Scott says:

    Hello Father, just trying to squeeze some positive news out of that otherwise unfortunate situation. :) God bless.

  76. Tony says:

    Well that was fun. I missed the “spam word” and this software erased my entire comment.

  77. “Well that was fun. I missed the “spam word” and this software erased my entire comment.”

    Tony,

    Been there, sorry to say. I’ve learned to copy and paste my content to my clipboard before I submit.

    God bless,

    Gordo

  78. Alex says:

    I decidedly disagree with people pointing to the Anglican Use as a model for the Roman Rite. Even smaller innovations of Thomas Cranmer were motivated by his Zwinglian and anti-Roman theology. There are many problems which even survived into the Anglican Use.

    While I do agree the decorum, intention and external splendour of the US Anglican Use parishes of the Catholic Church is great, there are many problems with the “beautiful Elizabethan” texts. And not merely for the Irish nationalist jansenists….. (Jansenists wanted the vernacular to be implemented and the liturgy to be simplified already in the 18th century, e.g. in the Dutch Republic.)

    But that is not the subject. I guess some of the Indult people depicted as horrific by the report above, were just asking themselves whether priests giving Holy Communion into the hand in the modern manner (not of the ancient Church at all, in which a throne was made and no finger touching was allowed ever), and doing some other things, had the Catholic faith in the sacraments.

    There is an erroneous notion living among simplistic lay “traditionalists” that the minister’s Faith is somehow directly connected to the minister’s intention.

  79. James R. A. Brown says:

    Someone wants the hymns for the breviary updated? What? You are tired of not being able to locate the melody in your Adoremus hymnal, or having to sing the same… hymn… every… day… at daytime prayer all Easter long? Come now, surely you must never tire of singing “This day God gives me, strength of high heaven…” Okay, sacrasm done. I actually love the Liturgy of the Hours, especially the psalms. The ICEL prayers are frustrating, but they make up much less of the LoH than the Mass, so it isn’t quite as annoying.

    Does anyone know why there are poems in the back of the breviary?

  80. Alex says:

    A local Missionary of Africa over here was provided with the traditional 1958 edition of the Breviarium Romanum by me and got finally a tranquility and peace over his daily priestly prayer. He returned to the Roman Rite Mass of his ordination (1954) also quite recently. Deo gratias.

    No need for updating outside of authentic updating. Even the controversial archbishop Lefebvre did many updates and wore quite modern chasubles before being disappointed and enraged by the post-conciliar practical revolutions. In Ecône until 1974 the 1965 Interim Missal was used, including the celebrant at the sedilla and the Liturgy of the Word (Mass of Catechumens) celebrated in the vernacular wholly, except for the proprium and ordinarium.

  81. swmichigancatholic says:

    Some of that, Alex, has been caused by having to endure liturgical abuses. It’s difficult to get past the experience of liturgical or theological abuse perpetrated by a priest who clearly “wants you to know” in a sarcastic or flamboyant fashion that he thinks religion is bunk. The recipient starts to wonder if the priest is acting with the intention of the church at all.

    It’s a wound that needs healing. It’s not something that you should re-injure the person over.

    [Now don’t jump all over me! I go to a novus ordo parish, ok? But I’ve experienced this. It’s not an easy thing to get over.]

  82. Wessex says:

    If Fr Macafee is attempting to expel traditionalists from his parish, let them organise an independent intitiative under his nose and reduce his token TLM to zero.

  83. Ole Doc Farmer says:

    How could anyone possibly think that Fr. McAfee would do such a thing? Fr. McAfee is saying that he is going to establish the TLM at his parish. Period.