Notes from man after his first TLM

I found interesting this post, by a fellow named Christopher Humphries.

My emphases and comments.

Got a Hand Missal (1962) & My First TLM (FSSP)

Submitted by Christopher on Monday, 13 October 2008

Got a Hand Missal (1962) & My First TLM (FSSP)

Disclaimer: these are my personal opinions and I am only sharing experiences. It is relative to my growth in faith and personal experience. I have no desire to tell another person the right and wrong methods of obedient Catholic practice. This is what works/fails for me growing closer to God and Our Lady of Grace.

The Hand Missal

As I spoke of before, I wanted a hand missal (1962) for the Traditional Latin Mass. The missal doesn’t change, so it’s nice that all you need is one missal. So, I ordered one from Amazon (Angelus Press edition).

I was planning on going to a TLM this past weekend and so I needed a missal to follow along. It came in on Friday, so had it in time to get familiar with it. Now that I have my missal, I’m ready for the Mass!

The TLM ran by FSSP

Arriving into the parish, I realized that I wasn’t dressed properly enough. I was in jeans, yet had fancy shoes and a nice button-up dress shirt. Everyone else was wearing suits and most men had ties on. They all had dress pants on[This isn't something to worry about.  Adjustments can be made along the line.]

All the women had veils over their heads, which to my surprise was quite beautiful. One women I saw in the sunlight, as she was walking back from receiving the Eucharist, looked like Mary surrounded in light. It was quite amazing. I believe that that is what the image of women is to be like, at least in our hearts. So, that part was interesting. [And no surprise either!]

The choir was just amazing; they sounded like angels. While I didn’t understand what they were singing, the intent and beauty was communicated. [That's it!] That was one of my favorite parts and the choir even has a CD!

One interesting and a touch uncanny tidbit, not the liturgy or Mass itself, was that Father Orlowski, FSSP, was the Mass celebrant. This name may not ring any bells with anyone and he is a good priest, yet probably not famous as far as priests go. He is important in my faith and vocation experiences. The reason is that we spoke on a plane from Scranton, PA to Detroit airport. The hour long conversation meant a great deal to me and helped to get the priesthood vocation wheels turning.

I found out later that he was stationed at another parish in another state, and he just happened to be in town this past Sunday and celebrated the high Mass.

His topics on grace, computers (he used to be a programmer also), history, priesthood vocation, and sacraments were very interesting to me. Yet, it wasn’t until over time that I remember them and meditate on them in prayer. The discussion with this humble priest, of great love and passion for God and Our Lady, was a very special experience for me. I was very grateful for this time. God does work in mysterious ways, the Holy Spirit is amazing.

Thank you, Father Orlowski.

My Impression Of The Mass

While I did have my missal, I still didn’t know what was going on. This was to be expected, as noted by Father Z. I was excited, yet didn’t know what to expect or do. I felt nervous as I genuflected before entering pew, as I didn’t know if I was supposed to or not! If unsure, genuflect to the Lord, right?

Well, the priest and all the altar boys entered. There were about eight boys and teenagers. I wasn’t expecting that, as that just doesn’t exist in the Novus Ordo Masses I’ve been to. So was a ‘hrm interesting’ moment. Father then blessed everyone with holy water from the aspergilum and everyone genuflected as the holy water came their direction (seemed like a genuflecting wave as he started up one side and came down the other [stopping to pray halfway through], was amazing).

The entire Mass seemed to all have direct focus on the altar and priest. Everything was very reverent. There wasn’t much in the way of distractions. The wasn’t anything uncomfortable. There seemed to be much more focus on prayer during the Mass also, which I appreciated.

Something which I think got lost in communication with the Novus Ordo Masses I’ve been to. Maybe I needed a better missal?

This is text from the Angelus Press hand missal, in the Ordinary of the Mass part, II-A, 13. The Offertory Verse (page 859), that is written in the side notes, which I found very awesome:

This moment brings us back to our true place before God and purifies us. It prepares us to enter into God and share in His divine activities. The Offertory opens the door to the secrets of God and to union with Him.

As this bread on the paten and this wine in the chalice are in a state of expectancy of becoming Christ’s Body and Blood, so we present ourselves to God in voluntary expectancy of a change to be made in us–an expectancy of divinization.

In the Offertory, Christ unites our desires and prayers to His own offering of Himself to the Father. As our intentions are joined to the Passion of Christ, the yassume the value of the Passion in the eyes of God.

In the Agony in the Garden, Christ performed His offertory, giving Himself in advance to all the sufferings of Calvary. This is the spirit we should take from the Mass; an entire acceptance in advance of what God’s grace will ask of us.

The Offertory reminds us that the law of salvation is generosity without discussion.

A parallel contrast look on the Mass from the TLM perspective will help any future Mass I go to.

Everyone finished the song after priest and altar boys left. Everyone stayed on their knees in prayer and all focus to the altar till the priest removed the Mass chalice, paten and other items. That is something I’ve never seen at Mass before. [Excellent!] I felt at home there.

All focus is on Christ, from start to end. It is quite amazing. In a sense, the orders of the Mass didn’t matter. The missal was enough to know what was going on. I was too busy focusing on the Mass to worry about too much of the details, there is plenty of time to explore that later.

After Mass

After Mass had ended and people started to exit the church, I stopped one person and asked if it was normal for the priest to come to the front of the church and speak with the people, as in all the other Masses I’ve been to. The gentleman that I spoke with happened to know Father and his son was an altar boy. So, he took me to the back where I got to see Father again, face to face.

We spoke for a bit and caught up briefly. He then introduced me to the other priest of the parish, whose name escapes me now. Then we went downstairs into where they have tables set up, with a kitchen and coffee/donuts. Apparently, everyone gets together and eats a meal together after Mass. This was truly amazing to me! There is a real sense of community[Of course!]

Everyone was very friendly and welcoming. I couldn’t stay for a meal, and Father even offered to buy for me (to which I could never accept, I help pay for priests not the other way around). I look forward to meeting everyone.

After Thoughts

I’ll definitely be going back to this parish for Mass whenever possible. While I do not have a car, I’ll gladly pay the price for cab fare ($20 round trip). I feel this is where I belong. Maybe I can speak to someone eventually that happens to live near me that I could get a ride from? [Indeed!]

Another thing I need to do is purchase nicer clothes. I need to get some nice dress pants and dress shirts (and a tie or two).

I was curious of the FSSP seminaries, so I researched it a bit from their site and found they have two: one in the US and one in Germany (I used to live in Germany and relearning German wouldn’t be that difficult). While I am still not accepted into the Church yet, I am discerning the priesthood and was curious what FSSP seminary was like and requirements for acceptance, etc.

Interesting, no?

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37 Responses to Notes from man after his first TLM

  1. Jordanes says:

    Everyone stayed on their knees in prayer and all focus to the altar till the priest removed the Mass chalice, paten and other items.

    Interesting. We do that at our parish’s vernacular Novus Ordo, except the chalice and paten, etc. are removed after Communion is finished and before the Mass ends. Everyone stays kneeling in silent prayer until the priest and/or deacon finish their reverent gathering up of the sacred utensils for carrying back to the sacristy. Nobody sits until Father, or even Father and the deacons, sit. But I know that our parish’s custom is hardly universal. I don’t know why we started doing that a few years ago. Nobody told us to. I guess it just seemed like the right thing to do to wait attentively on our knees for the priest and deacons to finish their service at the altar before we would sit down in the pews.

    More recently the practice was begun, at our pastor’s direction I believe, that after Communion all the liturgical ministers in the sanctuary (priests, deacons, altar boys and/or female altar boys) would pause and face the tabernacle for the reposition of the reserved sacrament after Communion, and then all genuflect as the tabernacle doors are closed. Even the Unnecessary Ministers of Holy Communion (and I do mean “unnecessary” — we’re a large parish, but not THAT large) stand together outside the sanctuary and genuflect or bow at the reposition before returning to their pews.

  2. Eric says:

    Wow, this guy got off easy. At our TLM parish we hog tie any visitors and throw them in the BBQ out back after mass, jeans and all. I thought all traditional parishes did that!

  3. Fr. Dan says:

    I know what church that he was in I have been there a few times my self!

  4. Culpable Apathy says:

    I have been going to TLM for 30 years. I used to “get” it, but for the past few years I have noticed that I have a clear dislike for the Offertory and just didn’t understand it. Why offer bread and wine to God BEFORE it is Christ? before He is Sacramentally present? It didn’t make sense, so I didn’t bother. Gradually that attitude spread to other parts of the Mass, and now when I go to Mass most of the time I feel completely disconnected from almost the whole Mass and have no desire to be there.

    What strikes me about Christopher is that it just took him ONE reading of the explanation of the Offertory and ONE Mass for him to really “get it” and love it like I used to! Reading his reaction and explanation of the Offertory has hit home to me – how much I have lost and how far I have slipped!

    If a first-timer can understand so much from just ONE Mass, and cared enough to actually study his missal and the accompanying explanations, how culpable am I for my ignorance of the Mass?! I never put any effort into understanding the Mass when I started to lose my understanding of it. I even have the same missal as Christopher, but I never even noticed there are explanations of Mass in it!

    I should have read and studied the Mass and my Faith when I first had doubts/questions about it. I remember what it was like to love the Mass, to have no higher joy than to receive the Sacraments, and to have a salutary fear of mortal sin. I have lost all that, and it was purely through laziness that I let it all slip away. I am not practicing my Faith anymore… I just gradually became apathetic.

    One day I hope I’ll come back and love the Mass and practice my Faith, as I miss being close to God and remember what it was like to have real happiness and love in my heart. But it just seems more unrealistic every day that I’ll come back. The path back looks impossible, and so how can a person with such a weak and lazy will as mine have the strength to walk that path?

    This note is for any other long-time TLM goers who may sometimes start to feel “bored” with it all: Please, if you ever feel yourself losing interest in the Mass, please understand how serious it is that you get help right away. Read, study, ask. Don’t follow my path and do nothing. You must try to rekindle your understanding and love for the Mass and the Faith before apathy sets in!

    Please pray for me.

  5. Jeannie says:

    Dear Culpable,

    Stop thinking about the difficulty of the path and focus on the first step. Go to confession and stay for mass. God is calling you back to the sacraments!

    Pax et bonum.

  6. George says:

    No. This is not interesting at all. I am grateful for anyone who discerns a vocation to the priesthood, but I’d encourage the (young) man to get in touch with his local ordinary and take a look at (inter-)diocesan seminaries before resorting to the FSSP.

  7. Sammy says:

    Yawn @ George.

    Dear Christopher Humphries, I will be happy to assist you financially should you enter an FSSP seminary. Let Fr. Z know and perhaps he will post on it with details. You have experienced the Mass of conversions, true conversions of kings and nations. You will never be satisfied with the banal again. There is a reason why Latin Mass seminaries are always full and the Novus Ordo has to have trolls do their recruiting.

    Dear Culpable, Jeannie gives good advice. The devil is happy that you are not at the Holy Mass availing yourself of the power of the Sacraments. You gave some darn good advise yourself. I’m sure many who read it will be helped. I myself will be saving your comments for future use.

  8. Sammy says:

    And I promise prayers for you at every Holy Mass until your return. This Sunday, I offer my Holy Communion for you. And George.

  9. Phil (NL) says:

    What strikes me from this story is that what stands out for this writer are things that are, strictly speaking, not unique to a TLM (mantilas are a possible exception, though that again is not a property of Mass but of the congregation, a change that if I’m not mistaken occured pretty much simultaneously, but not because of the missal change).

    My aim with this post is not to detract from the TLM at all, but to analyse some issues one sees in practice. Let’s check the boxes:

    - dress’code’. Is this specific to the TLM? no. While it depends on local custom, one can find NO parishes which give a pretty similar picture, perhaps save the veils.

    - choir, latin chant: still the norm in the NO as well.

    - 8 servers. Been a while, but I remember a NO mass in an Italian village where they had 8 and sent some more away because they were late (at least, looked very much like that was the reason)

    - reverence, focus on prayer, lack of distraction. I daresay the mass of my own parish scores highly on this too – and it’s NO.

    - community activity afterwards. Same as above. (quite honestly, not really my cup-of-tea, but that’s me)

    Now what’s probably on the tip of quite a few tongues here is the objection “yes, but it is a whole lot more likely to find this at a TLM offering parish! You’re very lucky if you have a decent NO parish” – which I won’t dispute for a second. However, I do think stories like these show there is ample room for improvement of / recapturing the proper spirit of the Mass in it’s NO form. It sounds like a proper, decent NO could have had a very similar effect on this writer. In fact, the reason why I find this story interesting is how easy it is – as all of the factors mentioned can be sorted by a priest and the congregation, even if the local bishop would be frustrating TLMs, even if the priest wouldn’t feel up to it, or the parishioners wouldn’t be comfortable with it – yet, as such steps would make a later transition easier, if desired.

    Again, don’t get me wrong: I wholeheartedly hope everyone can attend the form they prefer. But for the moment there are a lot more NOs out there than TLMs, and if a bit of cross-fertilization (and yes, more TLMs would almost certainly help to achieve that as well) would happen, a whole lot could be won in the NO parishes too.

  10. Daily Conversion says:

    Reverence and proper dress does not a proper holy mass make. The novus ordo has far too much vocal and physical people participation which is a terrible distraction. No one can enter deeply into the mystery of the greatest miracle on earth when they are constantly being expected to leave their thoughts of the Almighty to verbalize parts of the mass, sing, hold hands listen to public announcements before, during and after? Most novus ordo masses have so much conversation, piano tuning and people running all over the holy Altar that even a rosary is near impossible. How can one properly prepare for the great mystery of Christ present on the Altar?

    Entering into that mystery comes naturally with the Tridentine Mass because of the silence, not just reverence. That is why people experience time suspended. You become completely lost in the mass because you are free to empty yourself completely, your soul can speak to it’s Creator.

    The Tridentine is the mass of true conversions. How many people I have met that though they were married to devout Catholics and raised their children Catholic, it was only after experiencing the mass of Catholics since the apostles, that they ever thought of converting. When I’d ask what took them so long, they ALL had the same lament that the novus ordo was so humdrum and protestant-like that they thought “This is it? Why bother? I’m already here”.

    There is no comparison. None.

  11. Bob says:

    There is a website dedicated totally to the FSSP’s North American seminary – http://www.fsspolgs.org – which the person might find useful.

  12. kat says:

    Phil- I completely disagree that the piety and respect you seem to think is the norm at a NO Mass is typical.
    I have been to NO Masses in VA, NC, ME, and Italy and have found that even the best of the lot were lacking a great deal in these aspects. The dress code seems to be shorts/jeans and flip flops, I am usually the only woman wearing a hat, folks don’t genuflect to the Tabernacle and turn their back on Our Lord to chat with their neighbor before Mass, the clamor after Mass is deafening. The servers are usually 1-2 girls and more emphasis is placed on the “passing of the Peace” than the Consecration.
    My little children understand how much more God is shown love and respect in the standard TLM than in a typical NO, “When is Mass going to start Mommy?” (spoken by an 8 year old right before the Offertory at one parish we attended)

  13. Phil (NL) says:

    Kat,

    I very well know it isn’t typical. Far, far from it. That’s not my point, if you read carefully.
    My points are 1. that it can be done, and should be typical, and 2. that if it would be done, it would have tremendous positive effects.

    There reaction of some seems to be ‘who cares, just attend a TLM’ – which is fine, but ignores the fact that the majority of Catholics don’t and, for a multitude of reasons, won’t. In the near future and probably beyond.
    I express the hope that for those people, and for the sake of the Church and indeed our Lord truely present himself, a more proper NO Mass can be offered. This story shows how terribly easy it would be to improve in a NO. Of course there will remain differences, perhaps fundamental ones. But giving up on the NO is not the answer either – it is a form of the Mass, for better or worse – and I’d say it is our duty to learn how to improve it. The TLM is a good teacher in this.
    Besides all other functions this article can have (and Fr. Z. probably had those more on his mind when he posted it), this is also a message you can derive from it – and IMO, a valuable one.

  14. Richard says:

    “The novus ordo has far too much vocal and physical people participation which is a terrible distraction. No one can enter deeply into the mystery of the greatest miracle on earth when they are constantly being expected to leave their thoughts of the Almighty to verbalize parts of the mass, sing, hold hands listen to public announcements before, during and after?”

    Perhaps you’ve never been to an Eastern Rite mass?

    OK – that wasn’t entirely fair. But I think we take for granted the normativity of silence in the Gregorian (UA) Rite. It’s part of the rite. But it is not universal among the ancient rites. In the Divine Liturgy there is a heavy emphasis on dialogue responses – all chanted, of course.

    But that’s the East, and the West has taken a different trajectory. Part of the problem with the reformers was that they liked what they saw in the Eastern usage and simply assumed it could be easily imported into the Roman rite. While this might be possible in theory, the result in the N.O. is generally something much more artificial and banal than either the Gregorian Rite or the Divine Liturgy – neither fish nor fowl.

    As for the larger debate, in my experience such reverence and attire can be found in N.O. masses, but it is highly unusual – perhaps at most a handful (at most) of such parishes in a typical diocese. There needs to be a conscious effort, seemingly, by the community to achieve it. But it can be done.

  15. Steve K. says:

    I was wondering where Father Orlowski was this weekend, now I know. Father Orlowski is assistant pastor at my parish, St. Benedict’s in Chesapeake, VA. He’s great – he sings the mass very well and always delivers excellent homilies. He’s a very thoughtful and well-educated man. He gave a very good homily on the rosary and Lepanto on the Feast of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary.

    He’s new here – both he and the pastor, Father Neil Nichols came to us from Scranton a few months ago. We are lucky to have them both, though we lost two great priests when Father Kevin Willis and Father Dan Geddes moved on/ was transferred.

  16. Tara says:

    >Everyone stayed on their knees in prayer and all focus to the altar till the priest removed the Mass chalice, paten and other items.

    I cannot imagine this happening in my church, not least because the complete refurbishment in 2006 replaced the traditional pews with seating, no kneelers. Our priests informed us that kneeling is for private prayer and in the church we pray together, standing.

  17. Jim says:

    Good letter. This is what I remember about the pre-Vatican II mass of my youth, except for the meal afterwards. The focus throughout was on silence and prayer. The inaudible canon actually emphasized what was happening on the altar. There was no chatting in church before or after mass; that was saved for outdoors. Many stayed on their knees after mass.

    I have found the same spirit of reverence in my Eastern Catholic parish. The focus is entirely on the liturgy; chit-chattting does not happen in church. Actually I have never seen as much congregational participation as in the Byzantine divine liturgy. It is different from the TLM, yes, but the focus on the Lord is the same. The priest faces east when celebrating the Liturgy. The people sing the entire Liturgy, from beginning to end, except for the parts sung by the priest. And, in the orthodox tradition, there is always a potluck meal after the Divine Liturgy. Nobody starts eating until the Kontakion has been sung and the priest has sung the blessing.

    Both the eastern and western liturgies are very ancient and emphasize a connection with the Church of the Apostles. Hopefully this sense of reverence and focus on the Lord will continue to grow in the west as a result of Pope Benedict’s liturgical reforms. That is my prayer.

  18. Jordanes says:

    Daily Conversion said: The Tridentine is the mass of true conversions.

    So is the Pauline. One can only note that since 1970 far more Protestants have converted through the reformed Missal than have through the Tridentine — which only makes statistical sense. But apparently you think most or all of those are false conversions.

    How many people I have met that though they were married to devout Catholics and raised their children Catholic, it was only after experiencing the mass of Catholics since the apostles

    The Tridentine Mass is not the Mass of Catholics since the Apostles, since the Apostles never celebrated Mass in Latin, nor did the Roman Rite reach its definitive or fixed form until the reign of Pope Gregory the Great or shortly before that. One can easily establish the superiority of the pre-Vatican II Mass over the reformed Miss without a-historical claims that the Tridentine is the Mass of Catholics since the Apostles, thus ignoring the various changes in liturgical custom over the centuries and slighting the Eastern Rites which are just as old as the Gregorian Rite.

    that they ever thought of converting. When I’d ask what took them so long, they ALL had the same lament that the novus ordo was so humdrum and protestant-like that they thought “This is it? Why bother? I’m already here”.

    The way the reformed Mass is usually celebrated, yeah, it is a mediocre and Protestant-like thing, and probably has proved as much an obstacle as a help to conversion. But it’s outrageous to claim that the Tridentine Mass is the Mass of true conversions, as if the reformed Mass of the Roman Rite is not.

  19. therecusant says:

    Chris…

    I love the FSSP. I send in my modest quarterly donations to both FSSP and their boarding school for high school boys in Pennsylvania. I am blessed to have my kids attend a school where they attend the NO Mass one day a week and the Extraordinary Form prayed by a FSSP priest the other four days. He is fantastic. I write all this to illustrate how supportive I am of FSSP.

    However, I do think you should look at the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius in Chicago. To my knowledge, they are the only order whose charism is the celebration of both the OF and EF. Since the OF isn’t going anywhere, I personally believe priests who pray both forms of the Mass, as they were each intended, are best situated to advance the Reform of the Reform.

    Just my two cents.

  20. I appreciate all the words of support!

    While I didn’t mean to cause any sort of Pauline vs TLM situation, it is interesting to hear people’s stories also. I believe this is a key part to our faith: sharing.

    I’ve also noted this similar about of reverence in some LifeTeen adoration events in St. Louis, very powerful spiritual times. Bishop Burke was a supporter of the programs. I’m not sure of the TLM situation in St. Louis at this time, yet will be there again at the end of this month for a few days (will be at St. Cletus parish for Mass).

    I’ll be sure to check out the resources noted here (currently at work).

    Thanks Fr. Z also! Through your blog, I’ve received such kind words and thoughts. I am truly grateful. I’ll be praying for all of you, God bless!

  21. Matt says:

    I appreciate the compliment to our choir! :-)

  22. Irish says:

    Everyone, together now, for this young man:

    Lord, send us priests.
    Lord, send us holy priests.
    Lord, send us many holy priests and religious vocations.

  23. megotoaz@gmail.com says:

    I have to ask about the “genuflecting during the Aspérges” bit. I thought the only time you genuflect at the passing of the celebrant during the Aspérges is if the celebrant is a bishop. In SSPX chapels I’ve never seen the genuflection bit; in FSSP chapels I see it all the time. I always presumed this was because FSSP congregations are primarily made up of refugees from the novus ordo who don’t know you’re not supposed to genuflect for a priest in the old ruberics, but it’s not something that bothers me.

    Father Z: I am hoping you might be able to shed more light on this esoteric bit of rubrical trivia. Thanks in advance!

  24. Michael J says:

    Jordanes,
    Come on now. Between 1970 and 2007, the Tridentine Mass was essentially forbidden, so your statement that “One can only note that since 1970 far more Protestants have converted through the reformed Missal than have through the Tridentine—which only makes statistical sense” is really meaningless. Of course it makes statistical sense but is in no way indicitave of which form of the Mass is a superior instrument of conversion

  25. megotoaz@gmail.com says:

    Come on now. Between 1970 and 2007, the Tridentine Mass was essentially forbidden, so your statement that “One can only note that since 1970 far more Protestants have converted through the reformed Missal than have through the Tridentine—which only makes statistical sense” is really meaningless. Of course it makes statistical sense but is in no way indicitave of which form of the Mass is a superior instrument of conversion

    Or stated another way: post hoc, ergo propter hoc. In a properly officiated debate, Jordanes’ premise would have been dismissed as invalid by logical fallacy.

  26. Maureen says:

    Jordanes’ point is that whatever Mass God sends us is the Mass of converts. Surely you would not claim that the Maronite Mass is not the Mass of converts, and that Jesus loves them less and is with them less?

    For people who allegedly believe in the Real Presence in every crumb and drop of the Eucharist, you certainly sound unbelieving of His Real Presence _at_ the Eucharist.

    “I love the Tridentine Mass because it is holy and beautiful” would seem to be more than sufficient, without all this “the Tridentine Mass is the Mass of this and that and the other” rhetoric. Especially since the Mass of the ages would seem to be the Chaldean one, if you go by age alone. :)

  27. Michael J says:

    Maureen wrote: Surely you would not claim that the Maronite Mass is not the Mass of converts, and that Jesus loves them less and is with them less?

    Of course not, and my name’s not Shirley.

    All kidding aside, this is how it went:

    Daily Conversion said “The Tridentine is the mass of true conversions” with the strong implication that the Novus Ordo is inferior as a vehicle for converts.

    Jordanes denied this implication by citing the fact that more converts have come to the Church since 1970 through the Novus Ordo than through the Tridentine rite.

    I pointed out the logical fallacy of Jordane’s argument.

    How you get from that to the accusation that I somehow deny His Real Presense is beyond me.

    If you must know, I do believe that the Tridentine rite is superior by any objective or subjective measure to the Novus Ordo rite. This does not mean that I believe that the Novus Ordo is “bad” or somehow invalid. It is, in my opinion, simply not as good as the Tridentine

  28. Jordanes says:

    Michael J said: Come on now. Between 1970 and 2007, the Tridentine Mass was essentially forbidden, so your statement that “One can only note that since 1970 far more Protestants have converted through the reformed Missal than have through the Tridentine—which only makes statistical sense” is really meaningless.

    No, it’s not meaningless. If there have been a large number of true conversions through the reformed Missal — far more than through the pre-Vatican II Mass, since practically there was no other Mass — then it undeniable that it is a Mass of true conversions, just as the Tridentine is a Mass of true conversions.

    Of course it makes statistical sense but is in no way indicative of which form of the Mass is a superior instrument of conversion.

    I never said it was, and your comment about the Tridentine Mass being essentially forbidden is really just a rephrasing and elaboration of what I had already said about it only making statistical sense that more converts have been made since 1970 through the ordinary use of the Roman Rite than through the extraordinary use.

    I am not interested in the futile dispute about which form of the Roman Rite is better at making converts from Protestantism. I merely object to any claim or implication that “Novus Ordo” conversions are somehow not true conversions. That’s rubbish.

    Megotoaz said: Or stated another way: post hoc, ergo propter hoc. In a properly officiated debate, Jordanes’ premise would have been dismissed as invalid by logical fallacy.

    You’ve misunderstood what I said, which is understandable since I don’t think I made my point all that clearly. It’s not a logical fallacy to mention the main reason why there have been so many Protestant conversions through the reformed Missal. These conversion have got nothing to do with whether or not it is better, but mostly it’s because it was and even now usually is the only game in town.

  29. Jordanes says:

    Michael J said: If you must know, I do believe that the Tridentine rite is superior by any objective or subjective measure to the Novus Ordo rite.

    I pretty much agree — but without knowing a lot more I just couldn’t tell which rite of Mass is better at making Protestant converts.

  30. dcs says:

    megatoaz: The congregation doesn’t have rubrics, only customs, so kneeling or genuflecting at the Asperges is not against the rubrics.

  31. Christa says:

    Well, I can tell you that my husband wouldn’t have converted unless he had been able to understand the mass in English. Now that he is a Catholic, he might be more receptive to the Latin Mass.

    I think there is room for both masses. I would like to see the Novus Ordo more sacred than some I have seen.

  32. Kathleen says:

    Dear Culpable: Jeannie is right: come back, and stay. Don’t be concerned about
    boredom or distractions or doubts. Don’t worry if you don’t “feel” happiness.
    Our faith is not a matter of emotion or intellectual depth. What matters is
    that it is true.

  33. Tristan says:

    Christa, maybe that is because he converted without a “conversion”. Most spouses convert for convenience or after being prodded, unless a true conversion was had. Had he had a genuine converson, you would not have made such a statement. He would have been too enraptured at the presence of the holy Sacrifice before him, which is so unavoidable in the Latin. He would be too busy walking on air. He wouldn’t even know you were next to him in the pew. He wouldn’t even be able to converse until long after the Mass had ended. That is the way it is with every single soul who enters completely into the Mass versus trying to perform one.

    Lots of converts in the forced-upon us Novus Ordo. Why not? It was run like a Protestant recruiting office. They had to I guess. Many horrified Catholics fled. That too is fact, albeit a tragic fact. Only the Tridentine has inspired conversions and has 2000 years of saints who had conversions to prove it. The Novus Ordo does not and never will because it can not inspire. Another fact shown by it’s own sad history with more fleeing than entering.

    There may be room for both but there was never a need. I grow weary of the attempted defense of the banal and inferior. And equally weary of those who think the only difference between the two is the language. Sheesh! Learn the Mass! Then you can pray the Mass! And you won’t feel you need an instruction sheet in twelve languages.

  34. Jordanes says:

    There you go, Christa: your husband’s conversion was not genuine. Just ask someone who doesn’t know the slightest thing about about your husband’s conversion.

    He would have been too enraptured at the presence of the holy Sacrifice before him, which is so unavoidable in the Latin. He would be too busy walking on air. He wouldn’t even know you were next to him in the pew. He wouldn’t even be able to converse until long after the Mass had ended. That is the way it is with every single soul who enters completely into the Mass versus trying to perform one.

    Sounds exactly like me at the “Novus Ordo” Easter Vigil when I was received into the Church, and at quite a lot of other “Novus Ordo” Masses. But of course the “Novus Ordo” does not and never will and cannot inspire conversions, so I guess I didn’t have a genuine conversion either.

  35. Lucia says:

    Jordanes–

    I feel the same about some of the Novus Ordo liturgies such as the Easter Vigil, All Saints, and Holy Thursday. Pentecost, too, actually. But the Easter Vigil in particular is the single most inspiring Mass I have ever been to.

    Actually, the most inspiring Mass I have ever been to was a Dominican ordination, and the second most was my Confirmation night. But whatever. Our point is, Novus Ordo Masses are just as sacred and just as inspiring as Latin Masses can be.

    No Catholic would argue that, really. Both are Masses. That is pretty much all the sanctity you need!

    be fearless & be God’s. verso l’alto!
    Lucia

  36. gerard basil stripling says:

    My parents raised me to be a true and honorable Catholic. I went to the Seminary when I was 14 and learned even more Theology and teachings of the church. Although I did not continue on into the priesthood, I still feel that it is important for me to live my life to serve others. I believe that when I come across someone in need it is my duty to help ease there pain or give them hope or comfort. I have had recent discussions with my parents that have been life long democrat supporters. After asking them why would they support a party that constantly votes and leans toward pro choice their response floored me. They vote democratic because they feel the party helps poor people. I mentioned to them that life starts at conception and shouldn’t they place more weight on a life than an economic issue. They had no answer for me. Please talk to your congregations to place life and God before all. This is what I teach my kids.

  37. kat says:

    “But giving up on the NO is not the answer either – it is a form of the Mass, for better or worse – and I’d say it is our duty to learn how to improve it.” Phil

    Phil,
    I never said I have given up on the NO, in fact we must attend one every Sunday in summer (and likely for the rest of our lives after retirement) up in Maine as the closest TLM is 3 hours away. But the most reverent, most liturgically correct NO Mass within an hour’s drive is still lacking much in comparison to even the low TLM. I can’t change how the priest says Mass, the attire and deportment of the other parishoners, the music chosen (even if certain songs were recently forbidden, they still play them). People much more holy than I have been trying to gently push for years and have gotten nowhere. It is similar to folks in the ’60s and ’70s who saw the destructive path the Catholic schools were going and fought and fought. They got nowhere and now are the biggest advocates of homeschooling.

    I can insist that when we attend the NO our family genuflect during the Creed at the Incarnation, that our family kneel during the Our Father and pray during the passing of the Peace, that we pray the litany of the Saints after Communion and block out any distractions. A friend sees her family attending the NO as a missionary, helping to display the proper perspective to others, but as a weak soul I need the TLM for my own spiritual strength. There is just so much I gain from the TLM: the beauty and majesty of God, the solid teaching from the priest, the quiet to listen to God and ask him for assistance, the availability of Confession when I stumble, the focus to be on Christ.

    I see this young man’s appreciation of his first experience at the TLM as an opening of his heart and mind to God in a beautiful way. Perhaps he has a vocation and if so then we should pray that his heart be truly focused on service to Christ.

    as an aside, we came to know and love the TLM at St. Benedict’s in VA and am so grateful to Father Willis and Father Geddes for their kindness and the love they exhibit every day for Our Lord and his flock. May God help the new priests there continue to bring souls closer and closer to Christ.