How to beat opponents of Summorum Pontificum on the basis of “stable group”

I found an interesting entry on a blog called Fish Eaters about how to establish what is called, but in my opinion, incorrectly a "stable group".  As you know, some people want to interpret Summorum Pontificum so narrowly as to destroy their rights to have the older form of Mass.   So, take a look at this:

Everybody,

I live in Butler County Pennsylvania where there
are 19 parishes and not a single TLM.  I’m sure many people on the list
deal with situations like this as well.  It is becoming obvious to me
that if I don’t pick the ball up and run with it, nobody is going to in
terms of building a group and petitioning a priest.

Some ideas I have had about going about this are:

1. Use a yahoogroup to build members in my geographic area (the only problem with this is that not everybody uses the Internet).

2.
Have a "business card" printed with information about Summorum
Pontificum and my contact information and put it on the windshields of
cars that are at every Mass of these 19 parishes.

3. Use the information in #2 and have a classified add in the local newspaper.

4. Same as #3 but use the local cable TV community station to advertise.

I
can’t be the only person trying to figure out how to build a so-called
"stable group" in a community.  We all need to become involved in doing
this in one capacity or another or Summorum Pontificum will become a
non-event. 

Anybody care to share ideas or experiences on finding people in any given community to call a "stable group"?

Thanks…

Doesn’t this give you ideas?

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37 Responses to How to beat opponents of Summorum Pontificum on the basis of “stable group”

  1. Peter John says:

    I actually live in another relatively rural county in Pennsylvania (Carbon).
    I rented out a P.O., got Google Gmail e-mail address (carboncountylatinmass)
    and ran an ad in the local paper on four consecutive Saturdays (highest
    circulation days). The ad was 3×4 with heavy bright red border and with large\
    red title text that said “Traditional Latin Mass?” followed by a short
    paragraph about the M.P. and referring to my P.O. Box and e-mail.
    So far I found eight adults who are interested. Our total interested is now
    22 adults with 16 children interested. These are the kind of things some of you
    might have to do if you want to bring the Extraordinary Form locally.

  2. David says:

    You can get free business cards at http://www.vistaprint.com, just pay for shipping and handling. However the free one’s have canned artwork. If you want personalized artwork, it will cast. I am not afflicated with that website. My wife got some for our homeschool.

  3. Francis Xavier Sheed says:

    Jimmy Akin published this link on his blog:

    http://www.lumengentleman.com/motucontacts.asp

    One can register and then check back to see who is in your area who wishes to have the TLM. So far, over 2000 folks have signed up. This website needs to be promoted so that more people know it exists.

    Frank

  4. Franklin Jennings says:

    I am blessed to have had an FSSP parish 30 minutes away as long as I have been a Catholic, but I wish to say a couple of things.

    1)VistaPrint is a very good company, service wise. I have gotten cards from them several times. Both the free ones and some personalized ones, which still are much less expensive than local card printing.

    2)These are all very good ideas. Which approach depends on locale, but still, very good.

    3)Be careful with Fisheaters. I have gotten a great deal of useful information from the site, even before it was Fisheaters, when it was hosted on http://www.kensmen.com/beingcatholic. However, as with all “trad” forums, there is a lot of schismatic, heretical and antisemitic stuff to wade through. (By antisemitic, I don’t mean “Pray for the conversion of Jews” which to any Catholic should be an act of love, but intentionally uncharitable misreadings of Talmudic sources, etc. Everything short of the blood libel itself. I eventually quit going around; sadly this is the same reason I don’t do coffee and doughnuts after Mass at my own parish. the folks who run the site do yeomans work, I am loathe to criticise them, but they tolerate that which should not be tolerated, IMHO.

  5. BK says:

    Comment by Franklin Jennings: “Be careful with Fisheaters…as with all “trad” forums, there is a lot of schismatic, heretical and antisemitic stuff to wade through…they tolerate that which should not be tolerated, IMHO.”

    Only too true, very prudent advice!!!

  6. maynardus says:

    “Peter John” has some good points. An identity and point of contact are essential in establishing credibility. I might suggest a low-cost “starter” website as well, but if you do this *get your own domain name* instead of a lengthy and generic-sounding URL like you get with most freebie sites.

    As far as putting material on windshields, be *very* careful about this. Pastors do not like the feeling that someone is trying to “poach” their parishioners and will react – and sometimes over-react – accordingly. There is theoretically nothing wrong with a card or flyer that is merely seeking those who wish to form a group but be careful how you word it.

    The yahoogroup or similar is a good idea. We have found over many years that a large portion of our people find us via the Internet. But as you mention not everyone has access.

    You may wish to consider a public meeting or info session. A local K of C hall ought to waive a rental fee if you have some local Catholic bona fides and many towns have free meeting rooms available for the asking at the library, town hall, senior center, etc. Of course it is much easier to qualify for them if you have an organization. Might I suggest polling your existing “coetus” about the idea of forming a chapter of Una Voce?

  7. Jim says:

    I live in a rural county and attend a rural parish with a “progressive” priest. I would give anything to attend a TLM, but I don’t want to drive three hours to the nearest one on Sunday, my only day off. Nevertheless, I am reluctant to hook up with like minded people via the internet. Certainly my diocese is not going out of its way to make the TLM available. The bishop is suggesting that nobody wants it, and all but one of his priests are not willing to celebrate it. I doubt it will be made available during my lifetime. I would welcome any suggestion (other than the internet) on how to build a TLM community in this area.

  8. Joe Washinski says:

    So the author of this piece lives in Butler County, Pennsylvania, which is just north of Pittsburgh. As most know, the Pittsburgh Latin Mass is one of the better known Latin Mass communities.

    The blurb from the Diocese of Pittsburgh a couple of months ago about the Latin Mass was discussed in detail here and elsewhere. Much of Southwestern Pennsylvania is very culturally Catholic, much more so than most regions of this population and larger, despite the demise of the steel industry and the outflow of people due to the loss of many corporate headquarters once located in Pittsburgh.

    The Pittsburgh Diocese is facing a shortage of priests. There are several parishes that share one pastor and the problem will get worse before it gets better. The average age of the priests is growing. It’s just my opinion, but many of the older priests – in their 60s and older – who have not celebrated the Latin Mass are not interested in celebrating it again IMHO. Our former pastor, who resigned and was reassigned due to health reasons, prefers the Mass of Pope Paul VI – he said as much to me.

    Our neighboring dioceses – Steubenville, Erie and Greensburg – have been openly hostile to the Latin Mass.

    What bodes well is Bishop Zubik permitted the FSSP to set up shop in the Green Bay diocese when he was the ordinary of Green Bay. He may do so here, but that will be his decision.

    In the meantime, the Butler County resident should “offer it up” and head to St. Boniface on the North Side. that’s as much of the Latin Mass as I expect from here for some time.

  9. Anonymous Seminarian says:

    Personally I have a very deep love for and attachment to the Extraordinary Form. The beauty of the Mass, even a simple Low Mass, is breath-taking and the meaning behind all the words and actions is amazing. As a diocesan seminarian, and (God-willing) future priest, nothing would make me happier than to see a greater overall appreciation for this Mass.

    It’s no secret to anyone that in most seminaries it’s taboo to speak openly about your attachment to the Extraordinary Form. Is it because the faculty members are a bunch of raging heretics who would love to snuff out every last bit of Catholicism present in a young seminarian’s heart? Absolutely not. Unfortunately, at least from my experience, the seminarians who speak openly about their love for the Traditional Latin Mass don’t stop there…it goes deeper. They put on a facade of sorts…they “play” the formation game but secretly distrust it. They avoid going to the community Mass and Divine Office whenever possible. They’re not interested in helping out at community events or fostering a house-hold sense of community period. Rather they are interested solely in developing their “underground traddy cliques” which usually consists of a bunch of guys who do nothing but complain about the terrible situation the Church is in. Is it any wonder to anyone then why talking about the Traditional Mass behind the walls of the seminary has become taboo? More often than not it’s accompanied by an agenda…a prideful agenda that is very contrary to the mind of the Church. As much as I personally absolutely love the Traditional Mass, I too would be concerned with seminarians who demonstrate such tendencies.

    In saying this, those of us who love the Traditional Latin Mass have to remember not to make it look as if we have some sort of agenda. Putting business cards on windshields is a.) distasteful, b.) rude, and c.) almost an act of desperation. Let the beauty of the Extraordinary Rite speak to people on its own…there is no need to force it down anyone’s throat. Sure, we can encourage people to attend and help in any way necessary, but we need to be very careful not to isolate ourselves from the rest of the Church. Our Catholic Church is a very big church with many different people in it…as hard as it may be to live with, not everyone moves to the beat of the same drum. Let’s be firm but gentle in defending our Faith, but when it comes to the Extraordinary vs. Ordinary Rite, let’s be even more gentle. Some people just are not there yet…and they may not be for a long time.

    If seminary formation has taught me anything thus far it’s this: we all, especially priests and seminarians, must think with the mind of the Church. We must breathe as She breathes and believe what She believes. To do this requires a tremendous amount of humility…something I think we all can stand a little more of.

  10. David says:

    I found Fisheaters to be much more open minded than Catholic Online. >;)

  11. David says:

    I think the best thing to do is to get involved in parish activities, and be out going. Talking with others is the best way to gauge interest and get things moving. Pass out businsess cards, don’t put them on windsheilds. Start an Una Voce chapter in your area, or start your own TLM community, maybe put out an add in the local paper for some advertising. However, I would stress that we all have to do something when get done praying. I see the need to be gentle, of course, but not so gentle that we don’t do anything. As St. Josemaria wrote, we should all do at least one worthwhile thing, and working to establish the TLM in our local communities is something very worthwhile.

  12. Monica says:

    I’m confused. I thought “stable” was referring to the emotional state of the people involved. If this is the case, would it apply to people who storm out of sacristies after telling others to shut-up?

  13. David says:

    “Stable” here does not apply to the emotional state of any given individual. If yelling things like “shut up” in the sacristy is emotionally unstable, I know a lot of emotionally unstable priests who celebrate the novus ordo.

  14. Folks: THINK THINK THINK.

    Some will challenge what it means to be a “group”. There might be ways to establish that you are a “group”.

  15. David says:

    How about a parish “study group”? The purpose could be to study the writings of Pope Benedict XVI. Start with Summorum Pontificum, the Spirit of the Liturgy then go on to writings the the Pope references in these books. You could study the 1962 Roman Missal of course. You could pray the Rosary for the full implementation of Summorum Pontificum in your diocese and parish and maybe pray the old Little Office of the BVM.

  16. Lurker #59 says:

    It might be helpful for each diocese to found a single umbrella group that would coordinate with groups at the parish level (or collections of parishes).

    This can keep everything unified and at the assistance of the bishop (or put pressure on the bishop) as ideally the umbrella group should be run out of the diocese’s cathedral.

    At a mid range level (several groups of parishes), you will have the “stable group” that seeks the Extraordinary Form. This will be the “local chapter” of the umbrella group and they will be coordinated by and get materials from the umbrella group. It is important that materials be shared and unified in a disseminated fashion as this lends an aura of authenticity. It is important to keep membership at the umbrella level. The key is to prove the commitment, numbers, and the encouragement at the Church of the bishop. If an Extraordinary Form can appear at the cathedral of the bishop everything falls into place for the local levels.

    At the local parish level (or groups of parishes) take David’s idea of small study groups that study the writings of PB16. This creates an presence that will draw people into the umbrella group by interesting them in the Extraordinary form of the Mass. It is important that this group not be all about the Extraordinary form for we want this group to also provide education and thus pressure on making the Ordinary Form what it is supposed to be like.

    Anyway in summary the key is getting an Extraordinary Form at the cathedral. After all we are not just looking for an Extraordinary Form for our own sake, we are rather looking for better Masses all around. Put the medicine in the heart and the rest of the body will receive it as well.

  17. moretben says:

    I did exactly this (minus the internet stuff which wasn’t around at the time) when the 1988 indult came out. I printed little registration cards with a bit of information on the back, and distributed them far and wide within the deanery. After we had received 50+ names, we applied to the bishop (a prominent liberal) who responded surprising favourably. We were allowed to establish ourselves within the deanery as “stable group” (this was 1990!) with office-holders, fund raising events for vestments, musicians etc, and permission to seek the services of priests from outside the diocese. The following few years were not without their ups and downs (the LMS were furious with us, for example – not that it was any of their business)but the enterprise was, on the whole, amazingly successful for that diocese, at that time. A lot of tact and diplomacy required – as well as brass neck!

  18. London Calling says:

    We had someone turn up at parish coffee this week to try to recruit people to sign a petition for a Mass in the extraordinary form. “And if [the parish priest] won’t do it,” she said, “we can write to Rome and he’ll be in big trouble.” Is that in the spirit of SP or Fr Z’s Rules of Engagement? I don’t think so.

    We don’t have an extraordinary form Mass but they are available, both during the week and on Sunday, at several nearby parishes.

  19. PNP, OP says:

    Here’s a potentially wonderful irony…

    After insisting on the use of the phrase “stable group,” the anti-M.P. bishops end up with several large, stable groups in their respective dicoeses…groups that might not have organized had they not insisted on using the mistranslation! Lovely that.

    Fr. Philip, OP

  20. Tim Ferguson says:

    As others have said, and as Fr. Z points out in his rules, its important to get involved in the life of the parish. Perhaps, if the parish has a foodshelf, get a “group” together to volunteer to staff the foodshelf one day of the week. Organize a “group” that visits the nursing homes in the parish; a “group” that raises money to pay for the monthly heating bills; a “group” that provides some tangible and physical service to the parish. A pastor will be less likely to dismiss a “group” that he sees providing a valuable service to the community.

    I know, I know, a prayer group interceding for the parish and the pastor provide invaluable service to the parish, but I think that the more tangible and physical the service that the “group” provides, the less likely the pastor is to alienate it. If the “St. Dunstan’s Guild” arranges a fundraising dinner that brings in $3,000 for the reroofing of St. Hermengild’s parish and talks to the pastor about making it an annual event, then approaches him and asks for an extraordinary form liturgy before its monthly meeting, Father might be motivated to seriously consider the request – much more motivated than if the “St. Jerome Society for Crabby Catholics” who gather each Sunday in the vestibule to complain about the music, the heat, the homily and Father’s combover haircut ask for the same.

  21. vox borealis says:

    Tim Ferguson,

    Excellent point. Even if your whole group is not active in the parish life, individual members should be–both for spiritual and strategic purposes. If you are a good citizen in your parish, there is the greater chance that you will have the ear of people who really count in effecting changes (ie, ‘liturgy committee’). At the very least you ‘prove’ that you are a ‘real’ member of the parish community, and not some interloper.

    Meanwhile, however, communication is the key to forming the group. Those who oppose S.P. have a wonderful strategy of their own to defeat it, whether they are employing it actively or by accident: divide and conquer. So long as no announcements are made at mass, nothing is posted in the bulletin, no pronouncement is made from the local bishop, the man or woman in the pew has no idea how much support there might be within his own parish, let alone within the diocese. Thus, he is discouraged from asking his priest, and if he does ask there is the chance the priest will deny his request on the grounds that there is no demand for the mass–and how could the poor layman possibly rebut such a claim.

    So yes, form the “group” first. And this will really require legwork and at least a little financial input. Put flyers in car windows during mass, first at your own parish and then in other parishes. Most will get thrown away, but I suspect interested parties will contact you. Put an ad in the local Catholic paper. Try leaving flyers and/or contacting your nearby Newman Center (if there is a school in teh vicinity)–Newman Centers can be sort of whacky, but they also abound with energetic students, some of whom ARE very devout and interested.

    Ultimately, patience also will be key. It may take months before you have enough traction to move forward.

  22. Jason W says:

    I think that this is wonderful in that it is taking something of such high potential negativity and transforming it into an instrument of grace. Certainly, we should write to the proper authorities regarding what are clearly abuses and misrepresentations of the Holy Father’s intentions by the Episcopate, but this being done we cannot just sit around and mope, or become like those seminarians AnonymousSeminarian has described. We must be joyful and diligent in doing God’s work.

    The good friar’s outlook is the best I have heard yet. Let’s seize this opportunity and watch the bishops’ plans to thwart this motu proprio blow up in their faces (heaping coals of Summorum Pontificum onto their heads, as it were).

    As for the practical issue of demonstrating that there exists a stable group, why not set up the small group you develop as a not-for-profit organization, registered with the state and federal governments. This requires a certain degree of stability, and what more proof could a bishop need?

  23. M.Z. Forrest says:

    I believe this is called irony. No offense, but get involved in your parish. Did y’all expect the pastor to find the group for you? Did you honestly think the SP meant that the pastor had to provide a mass for just you and your brother? I can’t believe all the whining and complaining I’m seeing before even the most rudimentary steps are taken. Why not contact the diocese’s offices? Why not try and find a retired priest who will say the TLM once a month for a private mass? I realize a lot of folks think they are owed this and owed that. If you continue to make the church the enemy, you won’t get what you want.

  24. David says:

    There is a New York based web service called Meet Up Inc. at http://www.meetup.com.

    Anyone for $12 per month can organize a “meet up” on any topic anywhere.

  25. Miguel says:

    “In saying this, those of us who love the Traditional Latin Mass have to remember not to make it look as if we have some sort of agenda. Putting business cards on windshields is a.) distasteful, b.) rude, and c.) almost an act of desperation. Let the beauty of the Extraordinary Rite speak to people on its own…there is no need to force it down anyone’s throat.”

    We do have an agenda – to be able to go to a TL MAss without having to drive 300 miles round trip to get to it, finally. Business cards on windshields is hardly distasteful or ramming things down people’s throats. The Latin Mass can’t speak for itself is it (a) doesn’t exist or (b) no one attends.

  26. THANK YOU FR. Z!

    I appreciate your having put my entry from Fisheaters on your blog! I have been following your blog for months and agree with your opinion about the terminology “stable group”. I used the incorrect term only because it the one most people relate to.

    I appreciate the comments of the blog readers thus far. People have made good points about becoming involved in the local parish. The difficulty, which I am working to overcome, is that I have spent the past 11+ years driving from Butler to either Pittsburgh (42 miles) or the FSSP parish in the Youngstown diocese (70 miles). If I have to attend Mass locally I have gone to the Divine Liturgy in the Byzantine rite. This means that other than a few occasions, I have not put foot into a local Roman Catholic parish in over a decade. I have also attended the SSPX locations. Yes, until Summorum Pontificum my relationship with the Church has been a bit cold. However, I am willing to not “make the Church the enemy” (as on commenter described it) if the local Church will not consider me, and others will traditional sensabilities, the enemy. I am reaching out to shake hands with the local Church but it remains to be seen what type of response I am going to get.

    My family retains membership in a local parish and I have already sent a letter to the pastor, who happens to be the Latin teacher at the local Catholic high school. I have just created a yahoogroup at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/butlerlatinmass/ where I will attempt to gather membership of local people into a group. I have also created a flyer which can be printed by anybody and it resides in the file sectionn of that group. I am a Benedictine Oblate and will be going to a local oblate meeting tonight where I will “work the crowd”.

    Some people who have commented are right. There is no sense waiting for this to fall out of the sky while setting on my duff whining about it. Since our new bishop, H.E. David Zubik, has been intalled I am going to move on this. I will start with the pastor and then continue to appeal it to higher authority ultimately with Ecclesia Dei in Rome as the motu proprio suggests, if it is necessary.

    One commenter suggested having people strategically placed in the various parishes and working from that perspective. I will lead this thing, but I am going to need the help of others who have had a bit more of a “normal” relationship with the local parish than I. I would truly love to have a normal local parish life, but until Summorum Pontificum this has been a problem. Thank God a new era is upon the Church!

    Thanks again to those who have contributed to my question. I am open to any other input anybody would care to share.

    Matt Callihan
    Butler, PA

  27. Matt Callihan says:

    THANK YOU FR. Z!

    I appreciate your having put my entry from Fisheaters on your blog! I have been following your blog for months and agree with your opinion about the terminology “stable group”. I used the incorrect term only because it the one most people relate to.

    I appreciate the comments of the blog readers thus far. People have made good points about becoming involved in the local parish. The difficulty, which I am working to overcome, is that I have spent the past 11+ years driving from Butler to either Pittsburgh (42 miles) or the FSSP parish in the Youngstown diocese (70 miles). If I have to attend Mass locally I have gone to the Divine Liturgy in the Byzantine rite. This means that other than a few occasions, I have not put foot into a local Roman Catholic parish in over a decade. I have also attended the SSPX locations. Yes, until Summorum Pontificum my relationship with the Church has been a bit cold. However, I am willing to not “make the Church the enemy” (as on commenter described it) if the local Church will not consider me, and others will traditional sensabilities, the enemy. I am reaching out to shake hands with the local Church but it remains to be seen what type of response I am going to get.

    My family retains membership in a local parish and I have already sent a letter to the pastor, who happens to be the Latin teacher at the local Catholic high school. I have just created a yahoogroup at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/butlerlatinmass/ where I will attempt to gather membership of local people into a group. I have also created a flyer which can be printed by anybody and it resides in the file sectionn of that group. I am a Benedictine Oblate and will be going to a local oblate meeting tonight where I will “work the crowd”.

    Some people who have commented are right. There is no sense waiting for this to fall out of the sky while setting on my duff whining about it. Since our new bishop, H.E. David Zubik, has been intalled I am going to move on this. I will start with the pastor and then continue to appeal it to higher authority ultimately with Ecclesia Dei in Rome as the motu proprio suggests, if it is necessary.

    One commenter suggested having people strategically placed in the various parishes and working from that perspective. I will lead this thing, but I am going to need the help of others who have had a bit more of a “normal” relationship with the local parish than I. I would truly love to have a normal local parish life, but until Summorum Pontificum this has been a problem. Thank God a new era is upon the Church!

    Thanks again to all who have contributed to my question. I am open to any other input anybody would care to share.

    Matt Callihan

    Butler, PA

  28. Brian2 says:

    London Calling: a great screen name. I assume you are referencing the Clash.

    As far as things on windows go, I would really really recommend that anyone thinking of doing that talk to the pastor first. At the very least, one doesn’t want to set a precedent: if it is OK for TLM people to put flyers on windows without asking, one might think it is OK for ‘voice of the failthful’ to do it as well. Lets not open that can of worms.

  29. Barb says:

    I agree about not putting things on windshields. It really upsets the pastors and sets a bad precedent. Founding an Una Voce chapter gives a group of people a flag to fly under. We took the approach of educating ourselves and organizing pilgrimages to nearby dioceses to the TLM at the beginning. We also started a children’s choir and taught them chant and traditional Catholic hymns. The members participated from the entire Springfield region. We also started publishing a newsletter explaining the sacred liturgy according to the 1962 books and meeting once a month to study the Mass. Since we were from different parishes (some of us are not welcome in any parish simply because we founded an Una Voce chapter and desire the Extraordinary form)in the area, we all had many contacts. The lumengentleman web site helped find a few more people. We also were teaching people to pray the Rosary in latin to get them familiar with pronouncing the words in anticipation of some day getting the Mass.

    Over the years, things began to fall apart because we had no priest in our diocese nearby to say the Mass and people became discouraged. Now with Summorum Pontificum, a document which should be studied hard, we have new life and have found priests who are going to learn to say the Mass for us.

    The private Mass approach is good. You can slowly invite others to attend – the Come and See approach. Take a booth at some show: a boat show, a family show, a home show – whatever. It won’t be cheap but you’ll meet a lot of people and be able to gather them to build a group, especially if you have good handouts (available from the Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei in Chicago).

    I have found that things are slow, but we can’t ignore the grace of God. So pray a lot of Rosaries and offer up all your pain and suffering for the restoration of the sacred liturgy and God will help. I have been amazed that the priests I have been friends with over the past 8 years have finally decided to learn the 1962 liturgy. After continued resistance, God is giving them the grace to step forward and do this. Deo Gratias!

  30. QuisUtDeus says:

    Fr. Z, as one of the co-owners of Fish Eaters (actually I do administrative stuff, VoxClamantis wrote all the webpages, etc., and is the one with the talent) and a fan of your blog I want to say I’m honored you have visited. :-)

    I think, unfortunately, “stable group” will vary from diocese to diocese. In some, ten people who say they’ll go to the Mass will be enough, but in others it may take more to convince the bishops. We should all remember we’re in this for the long haul, and it will take continued perseverence. In some places it may take years before a “stable group” is accepted. It’s taken almost 30 years to have a statement from the Holy Father that the TLM was never abrogated, so I expect it will take some time before we see a TLM in every diocese, Deo volente.

    So I think respectful persistence and perseverence are key no matter what methods are used to form a “stable group”. A few requests for the intercession of St. Monica who is a great example of persistence paid off wouldn’t hurt, either.

    I would like to make a brief comment on: “However, as with all ‘trad’ forums, there is a lot of schismatic, heretical and antisemitic stuff to wade through … they tolerate that which should not be tolerated.”

    The forums at Fish Eaters are meant for discussion among adults who can use reason and logic. We don’t run a “mommified” forum, and we’re not the CDF. People are expected to defend orthodox Catholic teaching when someone posts something questionable, and the forum members definitely do. They are some of the most knowledgable Catholics around.

    The biggest problem with “trads” in my mind is that some think everyone else is a heretic / schismatic / etc. in false shows of orthodoxy, piety, or because they suffer from subconscious Jansenism. It’s this kind of infighting that will work against us when trying to get a “stable group” more than anything.

    The goal is the TLM, the traditional Sacraments, good priests, and good Catholics. All Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam. Anything else is just noise.

    Kissing the hand, Fr. Z.

    -QuisUtDeus

  31. Henry Edwards says:

    Some of the obviously well-intentioned approaches suggested here seem (to me) uncertain of success. My reading of Summorum Pontificum is that our Holy Father expects the extraordinary liturgy to be parish-based worship like the ordinary liturgy. And that much of his desire to restore the extraordinary liturgy is at least as much for the benefit of overall parish worship and re-grounding of the ordinary liturgy as for committed TLM devotees.

    If so, it seems to me that if you haven’t been involved in parish life and worship all along — contributing “talent, time, or treasure” as you could — perhaps attending daily Mass and/or Eucharistic adoration and getting to know those fellow parish members who are seriously devoted to Holy Mass (as opposed to just vaguely to “the eucharist”); haven’t established relationships with local priests likely to sympathize with your liturgical leanings (in which case a Mass or two of theirs should be enough to make this pretty clear); have never expressed any interests other than the TLM at the parish or diocesan level; have never gotten to know your pastor nor complimented him on things he or the parish have done well. …. Well, in this event, might not the chances of success be better if you left the “stable grouping” to someone who has?

    Or does Summorum Pontificum somehow make it sensible to go to a parish pastor and say … Here’s our group. You may not have seen us around much before. But trust us, we’re stable, and we want you come up with a priest to say the TLM for us in your parish. What’s the percentage of that approach?

  32. Matt Callihan says:

    Henry Edwards wrote:

    “Or does Summorum Pontificum somehow make it sensible to go to a parish pastor and say … Here’s our group. You may not have seen us around much before. But trust us, we’re stable, and we want you come up with a priest to say the TLM for us in your parish. What’s the percentage of that approach?”

    You make good points, Henry. I have been waiting for somebody else to take the ball and run with it, but nobody seems to be doing that.

    Part of the thrust of Summorum Pontificum, as I understand it, has to do with welcoming people who have been alienated from the Church. From the perspective of the parish or diocese it doesn’t seem prudent to me for them to bite the hand that is reaching out to them. This will only further entrench and harden positions which is the exact opposite of what the Holy Father wants to accomplish.

    Time will only tell how this whole thing will play out.

  33. Scott, Carmel, Indiana says:

    My thoughts on your fine discussion!

    Challenges for Novus Ordo Parish Concerning TLM
    · Not enough priest manpower to accomplish existing jobs
    · Budgets already bulging at the seems
    · Existing plans and visions already in motion

    Challenges for the TLM in Most Existing Parishes
    · Most existing Priests don’t know or remember the TLM
    · The TLM needs sacred architecture, sacred music, sacred art, and building orientation which are an essential part of the TLM.
    · Adult and Child TLM Religious Education different than Novus Ordo

    Conclusion: It will be difficult for most parishes to have an authentic TLM.

    A Possible Solution: Form a TLM group in your own deanery.

    q Features
    · In the beginning, incorporate the TLM group for your own deanery or maybe several deaneries.
    v File for 501c3 status (not for profit corporation)
    v Elect Officers – President, VP, Secretary, Treasurer and others
    · Contact Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter and the Institute of Christ the King for their advice on the availability of a priest and their advice on developing plans for a new TLM parish.
    · Collect money for advertising and conferences
    · Persistently and consistently recruit others in your deanery that want a TLM parish.
    · Bring in national speakers on the TLM as a fund raiser.
    · Find a local priest celebrate the TLM.
    · Develop a business plan for a new TLM parish.
    · Finally after about 6 months approach your bishop with the business plan.
    · Once the bishop has approved the plans and the assigned priest arrives dissolve the corporation and pass the funds over to the new parish.

    q Benefits
    § You are providing a solution to your parish priest and bishop
    § Allows existing parishes to keep budgets, plans or visions intact.
    § Allows existing priest resources to remain status quo.

  34. joe says:

    Go to the closest church with a regularly scheduled Traditional Latin Mass. With the pastor’s permission, make it know to attendees who live in (or closer to) your church that you are starting a group to reinstate the Latin Mass. Some times this will save these people 10…20…50 miles – and let them once again worship in their neighborhood community.

  35. Charles says:

    When a group meets,

    1. begin with the rosary (in Latin), and
    2. follow with a short study session of the Baltimore Catechism.

    The rosary will be a spiritual safeguard, and will beg the graces of the Immaculate Heart, necessary for any restoration. The study of the catechism will keep orthodoxy fresh in everyone’s mind. This idea comes from Fr. John Perricone. It will also be very useful for new people, who may not have had much exposure to the mind of the Church, particularly in liberal dioceses. Keeping these two things short will not create a burden on busy people’s time, but will allow any endeavor to walk with Devotion in one hand and Truth in the other.

  36. Scott says:

    The challenge of finding like-minded people to form a “stable group” is that over the past 30 years people that have really wanted the TLM have already found it by attending Indult parishes or SSPX or Independent Chapels.

    Now with the Motu Proprio, there really aren’t many Novus Ordo parish members that are interested to petition for the return of the TLM. And it is on this evidence
    that many NO priests are claiming there is no real or substantial interest.

    The point is that those faithful that are interested in the TLM have already been marginalized and it will be hard to reacquaint NO attendees on the benefits of the TLM.

    But this is not to say one shouldn’t try, but just be prepared for blank stares and the endless runaround.

    Also, for those that criticize the Fisheaters Website, I recommend they visit
    the website for themselves. There are all kinds of Catholics there and the
    message boards have some of the most articulate and well-informed Catholic
    opinion available on the web.

  37. Cathy Dawson says:

    I’m in Fort Collins, CO and I’ve been working to find people in my area who are interested in the TLM. I haven’t been trying to form a “stable group.” In Fort Collins we have the situation that the FSSP priests in Littleton (about an hour’s drive away) have been working for awhile to start an apostolate here, since they have members there that make the drive every Sunday. I’ve simply been trying to find out how many people up here are interested in order to show the FSSP and the Archbishop that we have a significant number of people who want the TLM. I have found about 150 people – men, women, and children. I just thought I’d share with you what I’ve done to find people.

    First, I asked a few friends whom I knew might be interested in the TLM if I could take down their names as people interested in the TLM. Then, I contacted the pastor at the FSSP apostolate in Littleton and told him that I and these folks were hoping that there could be a TLM up here. To my delight, he had already been considering it. I began keeping people on my list up to date on the status of things. When it began to look like we would have the TLM soon, I volunteered to the pastor in Littleton to be a contact person for him to be able to disseminate information to people up here.

    How did I find people? I homeschool and most of the homeschoolers I know were interested. They knew a lot of other people who were interested. The priests in Littleton let me know who they knew of. My daughters have sung in the choir at our parish and knew people from there. I attend an Opus Dei circle occasionally and found some people there. One of the area parishes has a chant choir – they were all interested. I have also met people in funny ways. One man had a Latin Mass bumper sticker on his car and was at the pump next to me at the gas station. I said “Hey, do you go to the Latin Mass?” I met a lady at the grocery store because she was wearing a t-shirt that had an image of Our Lady. I said “Hey, I like your t-shirt.” These folks are on my list now. In a nut shell, I talked to people I know and I kept my eyes open for people I didn’t know. I have gotten to know people at my local parishes, not because I want to recruit them for the Latin Mass but because I think it’s good to know members of my Christian family and because I wanted to serve them and my parish. I especially make an effort to get to know orthodox Catholics because I think we need each other’s support. Even though I’m limited in time that I have for volunteering, I’ve found ways to be a part of the Catholic community here in Fort Collins.

    Most importantly, I pray to a large host of angels and saints to help us out. I offer my joys and sufferings for the success of our apostolate. I try to gain indulgences for the souls in Purgatory and ask any souls who have been helped by my prayers to help us. I’m working on my own personal holiness. Even though I have a long way to go in this regard, God still uses what little I give Him.

    I found out yesterday that we will begin having the TLM at Holy Family Church in Fort Collins on October 28 at 5pm. After that it will be every 1st Sunday there at 5pm. Deo gratias!