“Meanwhile, I received this lovely note from a reader…”

We know that, in a few years, the inexorable force of demographics will massively reduce the numbers of people in the pews, people who even lightly suggest that they are Catholic, the number of priests, the properties the Church holds… everything.   I just saw a study that showed that something dire happened around 1965 which could be the cause of the plummet in numbers of seminarians… while on the other hand in dioceses and groups where tradition is strong, the numbers trend upward.   Coincidence?

A couple days ago here in Rome, I spoke with an American priest who said that in his major archdiocese, for the last couple of years about half of all the new priests can and do say the Traditional Latin Mass.

A friend of mine, years ago, claimed that the Novus Ordo would die out.   I didn’t accept his claim at the time.   I am beginning to wonder.   When I see TLM congregations, I see young families with lots of children.

Will they and the young TLM celebrating priests be the only one’s left in the hard times to come?   During what could be the Great Falling Away?

I have no answer to that.   The trends I see suggest something along those lines.

Meanwhile, the Enemy is active in Hell’s war on souls and the Enemy is sly.   Who knows what will hit us next.   Attacks will come from outside of the Church.  The worse attacks will be from within… as we are already seeing build in both kind and number.

Meanwhile, I received this lovely note from a reader…

I have the privilege to attend this morning the first TLM of a young priest. He is a diocesan priest and celebrated mass in a newly restored old country church on a road that just received a fresh coat of gravel. His homily mentioned keeping alive the traditions and ways of all times. The church was beautiful, the mass was edifying, and the only sound to be heard during the canon was from the farm down the road. Anyway, as this is the type of thing you tend to mention, I thought you might like hear about it.

Our Lord gave us a Church which, because it is His, is indefectible.  Indefectibility doesn’t mean that it will remain prominent and influential.   It only guarantees that it will remain until He returns in glory.

Because the Church is Christ’s Mystical Body, offered now for eternity to the Father by the High Priest at the heavenly altar, the Church will have to experience its Passion as well.   On the other side of that Passion is glory.

Before the Ascension, the Lord breathed on the Apostles and made them “witnesses” (martyres) to the Good News.  The Holy Spirit “breathed” down on the whole Church.  You, the confirmed, are “in-breathed” by the Holy Spirit also to be strong in living as “witnesses” in the Church’s commission.

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8 Responses to “Meanwhile, I received this lovely note from a reader…”

  1. OrdinaryCatholic says:

    I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t know where to turn anymore. We were given the N.O. in the sixties and probably 99.9% of parishes around the United States celebrate the N.O. Mass. Yet, on another level I keep hearing the hammering about how the TLM is the way to go and I do wish we had it here also in New Hampshire but it is extremely scarce. So where are we to turn? Where am I to go? I hate being told that the N.O. is a travesty when it is the only Mass available to me! I believe that the N.O. is a valid though not necessarily equal in reverence as the TLM. I’m sorry, but I’m not whining. I just feel that I and many others are being left out in the cold while others are warming themselves around the TLM.

    [A good reminder for many who are strongly enthusiastic about the TLM. Brick by brick. Let’s be prudent and fully aware of what many people have and what most do not yet have.]

  2. Lauren35 says:

    Have you checked out St. Stanislaus in Nashua yet? It is a very fine FSSP parish, providing all sacraments in the traditional rites. Awesome people, too, if I do say so myself. Many of us drive for an hour or two to get there and it is worth it!

  3. veritas vincit says:

    “I just saw a study that showed that something dire happened around 1965 which could be the cause of the plummet in numbers of seminarians…”

    Father Z, don’t leave us in suspense. What was it that happened in ’65? (I assume you don’t simply mean the conclusion of Vatican II ).

  4. Josephus Corvus says:

    @veritas vincit – They got rid of football. :-)

    You might want to read Fr. Z’s post that mentions the results of “something” happening in 1965.

    http://wdtprs.com/blog/2019/05/the-shortage-of-priests-didnt-just-happen-by-itself-it-was-engineered/

  5. Geoffrey says:

    As someone who likes the Ordinary Form celebrated properly (with reverence, Latin, chant, instituted ministers, etc.), I find this line of thinking distressing…

  6. monstrance says:

    The grateful reader attending the TLM in the country Church has found the Pearl of Great Price.
    For those of us who have to resort to the NO, we are grateful to even have a priest.
    But sometimes the banality of the NO becomes a form of penance.

  7. veritas vincit says:

    “I hate being told that the N.O. is a travesty when it is the only Mass available to me! I believe that the N.O. is a valid though not necessarily equal in reverence as the TLM. I’m sorry, but I’m not whining. I just feel that I and many others are being left out in the cold while others are warming themselves around the TLM.”

    @OrdinaryCatholic: I hear you. But I have a slightly different take. There are certainly many things that are a part of the NO Mass that should not have happened, from versus populum to removing altar rails to overuse of EMHCs to insipid music. And I have been to a few badly performed NO Masses. But I have also been to a few reverent NO Masses, with altar rails, communion on the tongue, ad orientem and even lots of Latin.

    From where this convert sits, it seems the problems of the NO is at least as much slipshod performance of the liturgy as the NO itself. I’ve never been to a TLM, and I certainly want to do so (it’s only in 1 or 2 parishes locally) but I have seen nothing like a compelling reason to choose the TLM over the NO. Just being able to receive the Body and Blood of Our Lord in the Mass, which was a great blessing not a part of my Protestant upbringing, is tremendous in itself.

    It’s clear Father Z and many of his readers, feel that the problems in the Church stem from the NO and the practices associated with it. But maybe the problems in the liturgy are a symptom, not a cause.

    The cause of “what happened around 1965,” might just have been that cultural train wreck called “The Sixties” that affected the US and much of the Western world — including the Church.

  8. mbarry says:

    Wonderful post, especially the link to the article about the priest shortage. Thank you!