Old Mass/new Mass thoughts – part 7

Under another entry there has been some consideration of the age of Catholics who prefer the newer form of the Roman Rite, the Novus Ordo. 

Some suggest that people of a certain age may be more interested in the Novus Ordo, while younger people are more open also to the older form of Mass, the TLM.

So, would some of you younger folks take some time to write your thoughts about the new Mass/old Mass question?

I also invite seasoned Catholics to do the same.

Let’s see some responses…. posted in the combox.

FacebookEmailPinterestGoogle GmailShare/Bookmark

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Old Mass/new Mass thoughts – part 7

  1. Response:

    I am a 19 year old cradle Catholic who is discerning for the priesthood.For me, the question of liturgy brings up many different thoughts. I attend both forms of the Roman Rite, though I serve the Ordinary Form, because I can’t get to the EF as often as I would like.

    I have the luxury of attending two wonderful churches for the Ordinary Form. The first is my home parish.  At home, we are a more traditional Ordinary Form parish. We have an organist and choir, though the music is a little contemporary for my taste. We are blessed to have a large number of priests, and almost always have at least one come to help with Holy Communion.

    Church number two is where I attend university. We are blessed to have such a wonderful place right by my campus, and I am a regular server there.  This church is the most traditional place that I have ever been to other than an EF Mass. The music is amazing, and while there are EMoHC’s they are not regularly used due to the number of priests available. The servers here, who are mainly all men and either students or seminarians, wear cassocks and surplices.  If there are ever any female servers, they wear an alb.

    From my personal experience with both forms of the Mass, I see a place for both today and for years to come. Ideally, I would like to a greater use of Latin, and churches looking like churches, but I will take what I can get.

    I guess I really can’t say that I love one form of the Mass over the other. They are both the Mass, and I am very blessed to be able to attend Mass wherever I can. If I had to pick, I think that I would say the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. After attending my first Solemn High Mass back in September, I truly discovered that it was the closest thing to heaven.


     

  2. Response:

    I am 22 years old and a cradle Catholic. My home parish was and is a pretty standard Novus Ordo parish complete with felt banners, hordes of EMHCs, etc. I attended Catholic primary and high school. I was never taught about the extraordinary form in either, but learned some (classical not ecclesiastical) Latin in high school. I was not particularly serious about my faith until my freshman year of college at a very liberal state university. I attended the student parish at this university for two years and was largely disgruntled for a reason I couldn?t identify at the time, except to say that the music during Mass was of such poor quality that I actually longed to go back to my home parish and hear ?On Eagle?s Wings?. After coming to my senses, I started going to Mass at a different local parish which has a more traditionally celebrated Novus Ordo. Since then, I have been to several extremely well celebrated ad orientem Masses (Fr. 

    Longenecker?s parish) and really loved them. I have not yet attended an EF Mass but hope to sometime in the near future, armed with my father?s 1959 missal rescued from mildewed oblivion in our basement. I know of two friends from my high school class who would also like to attend the EF when this opportunity occurs.

     

  3. Response:

    I am 22 years old and a cradle Catholic. My home parish was and is a pretty standard Novus Ordo parish complete with felt banners, hordes of EMHCs, etc. I attended Catholic primary and high school. I was never taught about the extraordinary form in either, but learned some (classical not ecclesiastical) Latin in high school. I was not particularly serious about my faith until my freshman year of college at a very liberal state university. I attended the student parish at this university for two years and was laAge: 48

    Catholic religious status: Convert

    Did liturgy play a roll in my conversion: Yes. The liturgical practice of Catholics kneeling during Mass had the effect of when I became engaged to a Catholic that I wanted to convert.

    Note: Also as a convert I feel that the war between fans of the NOM and TLM is missing the point that for people outside of the communion who visit a Catholic Church is that they should see, hear, smell and understand the beauty of the Mass. I’ve been to TLM and NOM masses and if they weren’t in a Cathedral, I was usually more impressed by a Byzantine Rite Divine Worship service than either of them. If there is anything in a Mass that is noticeably inferior (music [instrumental or vocal], homily, cantoring)  to that of a protestant church it should be either shortened (in the case of bad weekend homilies) or omitted.

    fy at the time, except to say that the music during Mass was of such poor quality that I actually longed to go back to my home parish and hear ?On Eagle?s Wings?. After coming to my senses, I started going to Mass at a different local parish which has a more traditionally celebrated Novus Ordo. Since then, I have been to several extremely well celebrated ad orientem Masses (Fr. 

    Longenecker?s parish) and really loved them. I have not yet attended an EF Mass but hope to sometime in the near future, armed with my father?s 1959 missal rescued from mildewed oblivion in our basement. I know of two friends from my high school class who would also like to attend the EF when this opportunity occurs.

     

  4. Response:

    I am a 21 year old cradle Catholic who is currently a seminarian for a Diocese in the US. I absolutely love the EF but also understand the merits of the Novus Ordo. Instead of joining the Institute of Christ the King or the Fraternity, I decided to go the diocesan rout because of my passion for the proper use of the Novus Ordo. If done properly, the Novus Ordo can be a wonderfully reverent form of the mass and it is my goal to make it so, God willing.

  5. Response:

    I am a 17 year old cradle Catholic.  I like both forms PROVIDED that they are properly celebrated.  I’d prefer the EF if you have what you need to do it well (servers, choir, etc), but if you have to cut it to the bone (e.g. only 1 priest and server) then I would prefer an OF Mass that is celebrated by the book.  The Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, WI, is a good example of what I mean here: they have a very good OF – the only “downside” is that it is versus populum.  However, the rest is great.  Their EF Mass, on the other hand, doesn’t have much for “formal” support – roughly the same # of people there, but only one server, and not everyone knows what to do, no music – you get the idea.  I’d take OF over EF there.

    However, finding an OF Mass that is done that well is difficult, to say the least (St. Agnes is the only other church I’ve ever been to that gets an A+ in that area).  Most could do with fewer or no EMHC’s, more Latin in the prayers, more chants, priests following the rubrics, and, overall, better translation.  Ad orientem would also be a great help.  Not to mention getting rid of some of the cheesier Eucharistic Prayers.  Just use EP1, for crying out loud.  People don’t understand, then TEACH THEM!  We’re not stupid.  My 3 year old sister knows to genuflect in front of the Tabernacle, just from watching us do it.  No explanation necessary, until she’s old enough to ask why.  Then you explain.  People, especially kids, are smarter than we give them credit for.

    I have wondered if, with all the detriment done to the name of the “Novus Ordo”, if it will ever be able to gain the respect now afforded to the EF.  True, it is a more distilled (if that’s the right word) version of the Mass, but it can be done well, contrary to what most people have, sadly, seen.  Has it been “scandalized beyond repair”?

    Currently, I have a liking for the EF, even though I’ve only been to two.  I think that, done in “all its glory”, the EF is superior in most cases, particularly in a place where you may have a lot of diversity – with the OF, you have to have an English Mass, a Spanish Mass, a Vietnamese Mass, a German Mass, etc, etc.  With the EF, (Or Latin OF) you only have one, and the Mass becomes a source of unity rather than division. 

    There is one benefit that I’ve had from “sloppy Masses”: it’s part of what catapulted me deeper into studying my Faith – that, and (mainly) an apologetics discussion with an evangelical friend of mine.  And, speaking of that, parents and pastors: teach your kids!  They need to know what we believe, and that it is the True Faith.  Even if they can’t explain in perfect detail every part of the Faith, they should know it well enough to defend it (either knowing it, or knowing where to look).  And act how you believe…or you’ll believe how you act.

    Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi.

     

  6. Response:

    I am a 20-year-old cradle Catholic attending college in the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis.  This year, I’ve occasionally attended EF Masses at St. Agnes Parish in St. Paul, MN; I’ve come away from the experience grateful for the opportunity to experience beautiful, reverent liturgy.  At the same time, I genuinely love the OF Mass, which can and ought to be celebrated reverently.  I find a deep spiritual richness in the opportunity to pray the Mass along with the priest; I feel more united to the sacrifice occurring on the altar when I can hear and understand the prayers.  While I hope to learn more about the extraordinary form, my preference is for an OF Mass celebrated ad orientem and primarily in English chant with some Latin.  I’m glad that the EF Mass is available, and I will continue to occasionally assist at EF Masses.  Perhaps I will even learn to serve it someday.  However, I think the most important thing we as Catholics must ask of our priests is a deeply reverent celebration of the OF Mass which invites the faithful into a meaningful encounter with mystery.

  7. Response:

    I am a 30-year-old cradle Catholic.  Though educated at Catholic schools through high school and brought up with the sacraments, I never found Catholicism to be intellectually engaging.  I never left the faith but had a “half-hearted” practice for many years, preferring to read about and study the eastern religions (and surely spouted plenty of heresy along the way).  This trajectory changed when I began to read some of B16′s books upon being made pope, which opened many doors to me in terms of the richness and depth of our faith.  Before then, I truly had been taught a “watered-down” Catholicism.  

    A few years later, I read about Summorum Pontificum in the New York Times, but then was surprised when my pastor didn’t mention it during any of the following homilies.  I found the Extraordinary Form at another parish.  I did not like my first EF mass; I found the external differences to be overwhelming and discouraging.  A few months later I tried again and had a different reaction.  The “difficulty” of the EF led me to an increased spiritual intensity and a far greater level of active interior participation, as well as a stronger understanding of the faith.  Soon I attended the EF mass almost every Sunday and often daily, though I still attend both forms.  The discovery of the EF has also led me to new resources, from blogs like Father Z’s to numerous wonderful books.  The bottom line is that the events in the last few years following Summorum Pontificum have transformed me from a lukewarm, relatively uneducated Catholic to a person whose faith is now central to his life. 

     

  8. Response:

    Per your request, I prefer the EF mass.  I actually prefer the Priest’s who do the EF; better homilies, more reverent, etc  (FSSP, by the way).  Technically, if they did the OF, I’d prefer that as well, but we’ll never know, I guess.  However, my exposure to the EF mass did wonders to change me from a wishy-washy Catholic to a bona-fide “Catholic Nerd” who studies the faith all the time.

    I am a cradle Catholic, 42 yr old male.

     

  9. Response:

    I’m a 19 year old cradle Catholic who grew up in a fairlyconservative parish and went to Catholic schools K-12. 

    I love Mass in either form, but I prefer the EF Mass.  I prefer it for three main reasons.

    1: The EF is celebrated ad orientem.  I had never realized how jarring seeing thecelebrant’s face is until I assisted at an EF Mass.

    2: The EF is celebrated in Latin.

    3: The Last Gospel and all the other expanded prayers in theEF.  There are just so much richer andfuller than the OF prayers.


     

  10. Response:

    I’m 39. Catholic since Baptism, going to Mass pretty much every Sunday since then.

    I’ve been to EF Masses quite a few times now, mostly sung ones at CMAA. I don’t really see much difference between EF and OF there; they’re both a more splendid version of the way Masses were during my childhood in the Seventies, except for often being sung all in Latin and toward the east. And of course, if you’re busy singing and praying, you’re too busy to notice differences much. The biggest difference is the propers instead of the 4-hymn sandwich (which I find interesting) and the chanted readings (which I like). Oh, and kneeling to receive Communion, and having Communion rails. Those are different, although everybody still received on the tongue when I was a kid and so did I. It makes me a little nervous, mostly because of insufficient practice, but I don’t mind it. On the whole, I’m all for these kinds of Masses.

    I will say that I still don’t “get” Low Masses, but I’ve only been to them a few times and they don’t bother me, per se. If that was all there was, I might worry about it more; but then, I’m sure I’d get used to it quickly with constant exposure. But still, the whole keeping track of the priest’s back thing — very nervewracking. Like football. I just can’t keep all these intricacies in my mind, because my mind just doesn’t do stage blocking! Even with my mom’s old missal and a decentish knowledge of Latin, I can’t really “follow” the action; so I pretty much end up ignoring the altar and just doing what everybody else is doing while looking at the pretty walls or reading ahead in the Missal. Doesn’t bother me to admit that, either. That’s what I did most of the time as a kid at Mass, and for Low Mass purposes, I’m a kid. But it doesn’t really make me want to go to the local EF more than once or twice a year, either. Not good, not bad, just Mass.

    My feeling is that any Mass, in any Rite or Form or what have you, is sacred. Every Mass deserves to be celebrated with care by the priest and “assisted” with care by the people, because we ought to try to show our worship and love and appreciation for Christ coming to us. But frankly, I look forward to the day when everybody does it right, and I don’t have to worry about anything except my own attitude and soul.

     

  11. Response:

    I am a 55 year old Catholic and remember the TLM until my mid-teens.  Then the NO Mass became common and the difference has a profound effect on me.  In essence, the Mass lost its beauty and sacredness.  The hymns were replaced by heaven knows what, and there is a definite lack of sacredness / piety in the celebration of the NO Mass.  I have only seen once priest say the NO Mass with sacredness and I believe it comes from his reverence in regularly saying the  Mass in the Extraordinary Form.

     I am active in my present parish as a Lector and prepare 8th graders for the Sacrament of Confirmation.  My children are active in the parish as Altar Servers, my daughter sings in the choir (I would not let her serve if she wanted to),  and my wife teaches too.  I consider myself a Traditional Catholic.   

     In the early 90’s while visiting my mother on Staten Island, I found that the Latin Mass was said on a regular basis.  I was overcome to hear the Mass that I grew up with and love.  On Long Island, I cannot routinely travel 30 miles to attend a Low Mass on Sunday at 3 pm.  While my Diocese offers the Mass in the Extraordinary Form at three locations, locations and times are inconvenient.

    I pray for more locations to attend the Extraordinary Form and a return to a more reverent celebration of Mass in the NO form

     

  12. Response:

    I am a Catholic convert (from Eastern Orthodoxy), 37 years old, married with two children.  One thing I had expected upon entering the Catholic Church were Masses that were as reverent and solemn as the Divine Liturgies from Orthodoxy since they were grew from the same liturgical traditions.

    We initially converted to Catholicism at a Novus Ordo parish, those being the only kind in our area.  Having come from the very conservative liturgical practices of Orthodoxy (which I loved, by the way), I found the way the Novus Ordo was celebrated in this parish to be, well let’s put it this way:  if I didn’t know I was in a Catholic parish, I would have sworn I was in a mainline Protestant one.  There was a rock band, projector screens, and a ‘loose’ way of celebrating what I thought what should have been a very solemn occasion.  This is not a bash on the Novus Ordo per se, as I have since found other locations (but they were far away, such as our cathedral) that do celebrate the Mass in a reverent, solemn manner.  My family and I still converted to Catholicism, even though the Mass as it was celebrated at that parish was not something I was fully comfortable with.  Catholicism, the Church and its message, was still bigger than how the Mass was celebrated, at least at the time.  I just put up with it for a while.

    Then almost by accident I heard that some places still celebrated the older Tridentine Mass.  I went a few times, and immediately felt at home!  The liturgy was precisely the replacement that I had missed since leaving Orthodoxy, but it was fully Catholic!  It is at this Oratory where I now go as much as I can for Mass, despite it being 45 minutes away.

     

  13. Response:

    I am 43 years old.  I was born a Catholic, strayed from regular practice of the faith in my 20′s (without going to a Christian denomination or other religion), before returning to the regular practice of the faith in the Church in my mid-30s.

    Liturgy did not have anything to do with my straying or returning (I would chalk the “leaving” up to poor catechesis, and the “return” to inspiration by the Spirit and personal attempts at good, solid catechesis), although I have to admit, contemporary liturgical music choices often make me shake my head.

    Although I have experienced the TLM, and find it valuable, I still am satisfied with the Novus Ordo (although I’d prefer to see more Latin *prayer* (Agnus Dei, etc) included in the typical celebration of the Mass, and hear some plainchant incorporated into the rotation; also, I wouldn’t be opposed to ad orientem worship, since I like the idea of the priest celebrant praying with the people (“he turned his back to us” makes no sense to me, whatsoever)).

     

  14. Response:

    I am a 27-year-old male cradle Catholic who was raised in the Diocese of Belleville where the liturgy and catechesis growing up were both bad but never atrocious. My preferences for more traditional liturgy stem from my days of leading my high school youth choir, when I increasingly became aware that what we were doing made no sense if we really believed what we profess as Catholics. I didn’t have the opportunity to experience more solemn liturgy until I was a student at Notre Dame, where I encountered Latin in both the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms.

    I have since developed a preference for the use of Latin and chant in the Ordinary Form, though there are many reforms in the OF that I do find regrettable, and I occasionally attend the EF, especially since in most places I’ve lived it’s been easier to find an EF Mass than to find a reverent OF with good music. I should also note that I have a soft spot in my heart for the I am a 24 year old male and was baptized and confirmed at 10 years, my parents being lapsed Catholics. I study physics and astronomy. Although the Jesuit astronomers of the Vatican Observatory at the University of Arizona (UA) showed me how to live my Catholic faith as a scientist, the Extraordinary Form (EF) made real for me my Catholic faith and the existence of the supernatural order, contrary to modern science’s often positivistic tendencies. St. Albertus Magnus and St. Thomas Aquinas then profoundly influenced me, especially the assertion that theology is the supreme science: “Other sciences [e.g., the natural sciences] are called the handmaidens of this one [i.e., theology, sacred doctrine]: ‘Wisdom sent her maids to invite to the tower’ (Prov. 9:3).” (Summa Theologica I q. 1 a. 5 s. c.). Pro-science Popes Pius IX and St. Pius X also influenced me by condemning: Catholicism is compatible with modern civilization (Syllabus of Errors, 80.) and Catholicism is incompatible with true science (Lamentabili Sane, 65.); hence, modern civilization and true science are incompatible! Floating in a barrel on the sea of relativism, the EF has been my stable rock and shelter. Its order, synchrony, and precision,hence beauty; its “manliness,” fearlessness in proclaiming truth, and breathtaking realness; its realizing that external actions reflect internal dispositions and vice versa; its reverence, especially. All these make the EF a great force against satan and all his pomps.st of the Liturgy, often including glorious congregational singing. Among the several reasons for preferring a well-done OF Mass are that I find the chanting of the Roman Canon to be especially beautiful.

    As someone just coming out of graduate school in theology, I also find some of the attitudes common among traditional Mass goers to be almost as frustrating as those at a typical parish (e.g., wars over the dialogue Mass, rejection of “Vatican II theologians” such as de Lubac, Balthasar, and by extension JPII and Benedict, as just as heretical as those who are defiant of Church teachings, and using terminology such as “Novus Ordo” and “Usus Antiquior” in a way that implies a fracture in tradition instead of Pope Benedict’s “hermeneutic of continuity”). That may seem a minor point, but it’s not when you work for the Church and have to defend associating with “the conservative parish,” where parishioners will be quite open with their views of certain priests, bishops, and religious orders, to people you work with who are not as educated in these issues.

     

  15. Response:

     I am a 23 year old (cradle Catholic) law student in Texas, and I first discovered the EF in the spring of 2005.  In the large Texas city I lived in, the only EF in canonically good standing with the Church was offered in a nursing home chapel by several priests.  I recall learning of the EF through some conversations with one of my teachers in high school (a priest who belonged to a religious order who offered the EF.)  At the first Mass I attended (EF) I could not bring myself to look at my Missal to see what the words meant as I was overcome by the beauty of what was going one at the altar!  Never before had the sacrificial nature of the Mass been more evident.  The orientation of the Priest, the genuflections, the silence, and the sacred space were (and are) beyond words.  I remember walking away with tears in my eyes contemplating how that which I had just seen had been experience, prayer and loved by countless Western saints.

  16. Response:

    Fr. Z, I am 23 years old and a cradle Catholic. I prefer the Tradional Mass to the Novus Ordo, however I can only attend the new Mass as there is no Traditional Mass anywhere in this part of Canada. I initially was quite hostile toward those who wanted the older Mass, thinking that they were rejecting Vatican II. Now, having compared the two Missals with each other, and having attended both forms of Mass, I have come to believe that the 1962 Missal is more conducive to creating a sense of mystery in those who pray it. The overall sense one gets from the old Missal is one of awe and reverence, and the new Mass in my opinion is lacking in these areas. Beyond this, when I began to read about how the new Mass came to be, asked for by the Council itself but actually formulated by a small group of theologians and then imposed upon the faithful, I was more solidified in my position. 

  17. Response:

    I am a 38 year old cradle Catholic who reverted back to the faith six years ago. The Catholic grade school and high school I attended during the 1980’s did not provide me (or my fellow classmates) with a foundation upon which I could firmly state what the Catholic Church stood for and taught; as a result after high school I left the Church.

    After a profound religious experience 6 years ago I returned to the Church full force with the yearning to discover what I should have been taught. With my reversion I had to re-Catechize myself with the hope to be able to articulate and defend the Churches doctrine and dogma; as well as to raise my children in the Faith.

    This rediscovery of my faith lead me to seek the EF of the Mass. Although I believe the EF is far, far superior to the OF, I still attend almost exclusively OF Masses because it is easier for my wife and seven children to follow the Mass in English. I think that the OF is perfect for young children because of its simplicity, whereas I prefer the EF because of its rich complexity and depth of history.

     

  18. Response:

    I am twenty-eight years old and a cradle Catholic.  Thanks to home-school catechesis I understood at a young age that if the Eucharist and the powers of the priest really were what the Church claimed them to be, it didn’t matter who was prancing or preaching.  However, even in an abuse-free Mass, many things failed to comport with the cosmic truth that was taking place on the altar — the ridiculously clamorous “Christ has died” following the supreme mystery of consecration, the long distraction of the sign of peace just before communicating both come to mind as examples.  I understood the substance of what was going on at Mass better than most kids my age, but the form was puzzlingly warped, as if one were taught English for the purpose of speaking Pig Latin.  Around 2003 I sang for a college glee club and encountered polyphony, then sang for a parish in London which used the Gregorian chant.  I was hardly entranced by the chant at the time, but I distinctly remember singing de Victoria’s setting for O Sacrum Convivium at a Novus Ordo Mass and being moved to tears — finally, it seemed, here was music and text that fit the idea of what the Mass really is.  At that point I knew something was up, and slowly started to discover words and things such as Graduale Romanum, ad orientem, Tridentine, maniples, et al.  I proposed to a girl on Christmas Eve of 2007, but the real story was calling my folks and telling them about the EF Midnight Mass I had attended shortly thereafter – it felt like Eliot’s “arriving where we started and knowing the place for the first time.”  Currently I have been able to attend an EF Mass for the past 6 months, and my senses were shocked when I attended a Novus Ordo Mass a few weeks ago.  I pray for the peaceful coexistence of the two forms, but have questions as to whether the form of the Novus Ordo will ever be uniformly implemented, and, even if it were, whether this form would hold and teach appropriate attitudes towards the Divine Actions at the altar.

  19. Response:

    I’m a 39 year old wife/mother of 4, cradle Catholic.  I was raised primarily in the NO form.  Our parents took care to nurture our Faith, and were very careful to take us kids only to solid NO Masses/parishes…  They occasionally took us to private EF Masses in the ’80s, and I was sent to an “independent” boarding school, with daily Mass and all Sacraments in the EF, at age 13/14.  This exposure was likely a factor in my great love for the EF.  I love the prayers, and the calm, which help lead me into meditation of the great Sacrifice.  My siblings do also prefer the EF, but are not able to attend where they each live.

    Three years ago almost to the day, our children were first exposed to the EF at the ages 10/11/12/13–up to then having only attended the NO–again of the more conservative type.  They prefer the EF.  They say b/c it’s more reverent, and my daughter says because it seems that Adoration of God is the primary consideration in the EF, rather than the people around you.  The boys find serving more of a challenge, which keeps them interested, as opposed serving in the NO, when they complained weekly about having to do it.  

    My husband, a convert of 6 years this Easter, prefers the EF.  He doesn’t follow along in the missal, preferring instead to listen and pray.  He likes the calmness and peacefulness, which makes praying easier for him.

    If we had our druthers, we would exclusively attend the EF and have a parish dedicated solely to it, but at the moment, we are content with having Sunday Masses and some Holy Days, as our good parish priest is able to offer, having the larger percentage of his parishioners attending the NO form.  Our diocese does not have any fulltime EF parishes…yet!

    Praise God (and thank you, Papa Benedict!) for the MP!!!

     

  20. Response:

    I’m a twenty-year-old convert to Catholicism from the Baptist church, and I was received into the Church a little more than two years ago (as a result, Summorum Pontificum has been in force longer than I’ve been a Catholic). Soon after the Motu Proprio was promulgated my parish, Queen of Peace Church in Ocala, FL, began offering the ancient Mass two Sundays per month, and I became a faithful attendee of those Masses. At first I was very put off by the ancient Mass, and considered myself to be a firm “Reform of the Reform”-style Catholic. However, as I continued to assist at the ancient Mass, and began to understand by study and prayer what the older liturgy was, the powerful sign of the holiness and majesty of God it imbibes, and the awe and trembling it inspires in the hearts of those who love it, I became a very strong defender, promoter, and devotee of the ancient Roman Liturgy. Now I’m a 3rd year college student in Tallahassee, FL, and I’m actively working with a few others to have weekly celebrations of the ancient Mass here in Tallahassee. My home parish in Ocala now has Traditional Masses every Sunday, and we are served most graciously by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. The ancient liturgy has permitted me to experience the beauty and the awesome power of the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in ways I can’t even describe, and I’m so thankful to Our Holy Father the Sovereign Pontiff for liberalizing access to the older Missal. Long live Pope Benedict, and long live the Traditional Mass!