I have written a few times (since the election of Francis – for example HERE) that it is time to push forward in the implementation of Summorum Pontificum. People who have been wringing their hands or resting on the laurels or sitting on their hands waiting for someone else to do something for them have to get to work. Use the provisions and work the system and supply the elbow grease and the money and the time.
For example, a very small group of men got the now daily TLM going at Holy Innocents in Manhattan! It has greatly helped that parish and provided spiritual well-being for many. It’ll will continue if people want it to. They have to use well and protect what they have been given on a silver platter pounded out by the work of a few.
In the pages of the recent number of The Remnant I read of another instance, which if memory serves I posted about here at one time… I think.
Do you know what happened in the Diocese of Charlotte, North Carolina?
In the past, the former bishop had been petitioned many times, “to no avail”. More recently, a group of people, about 50 families, approached their parish priest (Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann’s) asking for the older form of Mass. The number of people then grew.
At first, Fr. Reid and Bp. Jugis said no. There was a reasonable practical problem: priest shortage and too many Masses. Fr. Reid was already stretched too thin.
At the urging of the priest and bishop, the group wrote to the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei“.
The VP of the PCED, Archbp. DiNoia, wrote back asking Bp. Jugis to provide for the desires of the people. [THIS IS THE TURNING POINT.]
So, the over-worked Fr. Reid – friendly to the project – then had a firmer basis to change the parish schedule. As everyone knows, Mass schedules are among the most volatile issues in a parish. Even though some resisted, Father was able to say “Roma locuta est!”. He changed the Spanish Mass to a TLM (!!!) and encouraged everyone to come all the same, that there would be booklets and aids provided, etc.
Hmmm… instead of keeping two groups in a parish divided, they are now worshiping together! Hmmmm….
If only the Church had some … I dunno… common language we could all participate in equally. If only there were some… whaddya call it… rite? … some rite which was so consistent that it never favored …. PFFFT! What am I thinking?
Anyway, it seems that Mass attendance is up for that TLM at St. Ann’s.
Also, the coetus fidelium who wanted the older Mass raised funds for sets of Roman vestments for the priest, deacon, subdeacon, for Solemn Masses.
The people persevered. They wrote the PCED. The PCED responded. At that point it was possible to move forward more boldly and do something as dramatic as replace a Mass in highly favored Voz del Pueblo with one that includes everyone.
There is another dimension of the story which I found amusing, given the strange comments Pope Francis might have made the other day about a spiritual bouquet that had been given to him, about how the people actually counted the Rosaries offered.
I read in The Remnant that the lay group, while using the formal recourse to the PCED also gathered a spiritual bouquet of 4700 Rosaries for their pastor and the bishop! And, “following the news of a positive result of their petition from the PCED, the lay faithful provided 12,000 Rosaries in thanksgiving….”
When I’m Pope, I’ll happily accept all the spiritual bouquets I can get! And I’ll like that people counted the prayers, too. I promise.
Use the provisions of Summorum Pontificum! Use the tools of prayer and good will!
I have often suggested to groups that they offer spiritual bouquets to their bishops, especially the bishops who seem the most unfriendly to their causes. Who doesn’t like spiritual bouquets?
Get a group of people together and make formal petitions. Be willing to be cordial in your dealings with the priest and bishop. Get it done, keep pushing forward, and don’t whine about it.
As I wrote before, Pope Benedict gave you over the course of his 8 years, a beautiful new bicycle! He gave you a direction, he gave you encouragement, he promised you a snow cone, and gave you a running push. Now, take off the training wheels and RIDE THE DAMN BIKE!
Now is the time to push forward.