As you may be aware, some time ago the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings posted on their diocesan website a document about the implementation of Pope Benedict XVI’s provisions in Summorum Pontificum that left some people shocked. That document, over the signature of the diocese’s ordinary Bishop Michael Warfel seemed to ignored nearly completely the existence of Summorum Pontificum and the Instruction from the PCED Universae Ecclesiae, even through Universae Ecclesiae was attached to the document. I wrote about that HERE.
For the sake of completeness and fairness, we find now that the document on the diocesan website has been emended. You can see HERE that it is reduced to the PCED Instruction Universae Ecclesiae, which is itself clear and useful.
At the time I became aware of the previous document, I opined that someone close to the bishop, perhaps someone in the liturgy office, wrote that previous document and got the bishop to issue it. His Excellency was ill-served in the person who wrote it. I also said that there probably won’t be any huge fallout from this. Neither should we want any.
I think this is a chapter that is closed.
At the same time, I want to remind the readers here of the outstanding witness Bp. Warfel has given in other spheres of the Church’s life.
When Notre Dame University committed its shameful act to honor the aggressively pro-abortion President Obama with an honorary Law degree, Bp. Warfel issued a sharp statement. Read that HERE. Bp. Warfel also “asked a local support group for homosexuals to move its meetings out of a local parish hall to avoid confusion over the Catholic Church’s teaching on homosexuality.” Read that HERE.
Those things don’t sound like the acts of a man who would cast aside the law of the Church and the wishes of the Roman Pontiff. Not at all.
Do keep Bp. Warfel in your prayers. Being a bishop today is a very heavy burden. Those who are courageous and faithful are bound to be attacked and undermined even by those close to them.