FSSP may get a glorious church in Rome for a “personal parish”

The great church of Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini has over the main altar one of the truly great paintings in Rome: Most Holy Trinity by Guido Reni.

The church is a treasure with a rich history.  This is where St. Philip Neri, co-patron of Rome with St. Peter, had his confraternity to care for pilgrims to the holy City.

I celebrated my third Mass there and helped with other solemn liturgies in years past.

And, friends, you should see the sacristy and the vestments.  Unbelievable.

Now I learn that the FSSP may be given this church as a personal parish for those who desire the older use of the Roman Rite! 

I just got off the phone with Fr. Kramer, the priest who is in charge of the FSSP mission in Rome.  He is hopeful and asks for your prayers that everything be done according to God’s will.  [BTW… to the right is a photo of your’s truly as celebrant at little San Gregorio for the 8 December Solemn Mass and Fr. Kramer is the subdeacon.]

With Summorum Pontificum in effect, and having seen tha the FSSP has made a real go fo things in Rome even in tough conditions, Card. Ruini is seeing the whole situation favorably.  The Diocese of Rome will be taking action.

The FSSP guys might inevitably have to share a some space with the Communità di Sant’Egidio, (I am conjuring imagees of Felix and Oscar as I write).   But since the Communità doesn’t use the church for very much, that shouldn’t be a problem.

The guys from the super-tiny S. Gregorio ai Muratori, where the FSSP is now in Rome, will be at Ss. Trinità (or Tirnità in Roman dialect) for Christmas Eve.  It should be wonderful to see a glorious Solemn Mass at the altar with that painting. 

The church will need some cleaning and fixing, but it is a glorious space, a classic Roman church.

Yes… it’s a lot bigger.



About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Dave says:

    Thank you father. What a beautiful painting. I just saved it as the wallpaper for my computer

  2. techno_aesthete says:

    Wonderful news! The next time I am in Rome, I will make a point of going to Mass there. Thank you, Holy Father!

  3. Maria says:

    W O W.

    I’m guessing it’s a little bigger than the last one they had too?

  4. danphunter1 says:

    Awesome news!
    FSSP, if you are listening, please come to Hillsbourough, North Carolina and set up a personal parish where so many desperately need it.
    We have already found the church building, an unused 150 year old Anglican chapel, now we just need the priests. Bishop Burbidge would love to have you.
    Deo Gratias.

  5. Syriacus says:

    Rorate meanwhile removed the article about that… Mmmh…

  6. Syriacus says:

    Rorate just put on line the following :

    ” Tuesday, December 18, 2007
    Just a note
    The news item posted here yesterday is true.
    We will repost it in the future.

    posted by New Catholic at 4:39 PM ”


  7. Before the FSSP got this church, the Neo-Catechumenal Way was running it.
    I cna’t help but wonder if their removal also means something…. if it is
    also meant as a message about what the pope thinks of THEIR liturgy.

  8. OGLS says:


    Please feel free to contact Very Rev. Fr. George Gabet, FSSP (District Superior of the Fraternity in North America) at:

    Griffin Road, PO Box 196
    Elmhurst, PA 18416

    The Fraternity comes into dioceses at the invitation of bishops.

  9. Suzanne says:

    Hooray!!! This church should be MUCH easier to find than the previous (dark, dank Italian wardrobe) chapel given the FSSP! Viva il Papa!

  10. danphunter1 says:

    Thank you so much for the information.
    I am contacting Father Gabet as soon as I finish writing this.
    God bless you and yours and Happy Advent.

  11. Joe says:

    Anyone know the addresses of this Church and St Gregory dei Muratori. I shall be in Rome after Christmas (staying not far from San Pietro) and would like to pay a visit to them.

  12. Matt Q says:

    What a wonderful Christmas present for the FSSP and the Italian Faithful. Yes, thank the Lord and the Holy Father for such a gift.

    Dan Phunter wrote:

    “The Fraternity comes into dioceses at the invitation of bishops.”

    So true and so very telling why the FSSP has no presence here in Los Angeles. :(

  13. Syriacus says:

    Oh, I would like to hear Card. Kasper saying clearly and loudly : “The Bishop of Rome invited the Fraternity of Saint Peter to his Diocese, and gave them the Trinità dei Pellegrini as a personal parish for those who desire the older use of the Roman Rite!”

  14. Henry Edwards says:

    Interesting sentence italicized (by me) in the following FSSP announcement:

    Personal Parish for the Extraordinary Form to be established in Rome: the traditional Mass apostolate in Rome under Fr Joseph Kramer is to be elevated into a personal parish, with Fr Kramer as its first parish priest. The apostolate will move early in 2008 into a larger Church, which will be given for the exclusive use of the new Parish: the Church of Trinita dei Pellegrini. We are told that the Holy Father wishes this model to be “an exemplar for the whole Church”. We thank God for this development, rejoice in the Holy Father’s leadership, and congratulate Fr Kramer and his community.

  15. adamsaj says:

    very nice. does anyone know if ICRSS has a presence in Rome?

  16. Matthew Mattingly says:

    One poster mentioned that the Church used to be run by the Neocatechumenical Way. Personally, I don’t understand why the Pope doesn’t just outright supress that group, and while He’s at it, the Foccolare movement as well. Neither are really Catholic. The Neocateumenical Way liturgies have been critiqued negatively at the Vatican, and by the Pope. I have heard their “Masses” called either bizarre, weird, or outright heretical. If they were removed from this Church, then good riddance.
    I have one question though. Although it’s wonderful that the FSSP now has this magnificent Church which is much bigger than their old one, does it mean they now have to give up the old Church, or that they can keep it and now have 2 Churches under their care in Rome? I hope it’s the second.

  17. Gaudeamus!

    Yes, the Institute has the 10 Sunday Mass at the Chiesa del Gesu e Maria, near the end of the Via del Corso.

  18. RichR says:

    Fr. Z.,

    This is a whole area of tradition that we Americans have no concept of: architectural tradition. You celebrated Mass at the very altar that St. Phillip Neri celebrated the same Mass (ie, the same words, the same ritual actions, etc….), and in doing this, you step into the same liturgical universe as he did all those years ago.

    Since America is so young, we have NO concept of tradition. Here in Aggieland, “tradition” is anything done over 3 years in a row. It cheapens the average American’s value of “tradition”.

    Man, I bet that was so cool to offer that Mass.

  19. Maria says:

    Joe, send me an email at mariasacristana at gmail dot com and I will forward you directions to San Gregorio.

  20. Lisa says:

    Joe, what a coincidence, my husband, daughter and I will be in Rome after Christmas, staying not far from San Pietro. Maybe we will see you at San Gregorio.

  21. John Polhamus says:

    Guido Reni is also the painter of the most famous image of St. Philip Neri, which just goes to confirm the association with this wonderful saint, a man who dealt creatively with reform in his time (the spiritual exercizes of the Oratory, a musical sidelight of which eventually played a large part in giving rise to the Oratorio), while remaing utterly orthodox regarding the liturgy. Many would probably be surprised to think of Philip as a reformer, but his was a reform movement which nevertheless manifested orthodox results. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Holy Father was considering this in moving the FSSP to this church in particular. Perhaps there are a few Oratories that might take note of this connection! This is truly blessed news.

  22. Sid Cundiff says:

    Two pieces of glorious news, for those of us who love Rome, and those of us who love North Carolina.

    When will the move take place in Rome (date)?

  23. Brian Murphy says:

    So is Fr. Kramer a FSSP priest. It says that it will under the pastoral care of the FSSP, yet it does not say anywhere FSSP behind Fr. Kramer’s name so I was just wondering if he is FSSP and if not how would it work that a non-FSSP priest is a priest of a FSSP run parish?

    Dan Hunter,

    I will pray that your Bishop does invite the FSSP into your Diocese. My parish is a FSSP parish, and I have been nothing but blessed by the graciousness and holiness of the FSSP priests I have had the privilege of meeting.

    There are so many reasons to be hopeful!

  24. RichR says:

    Antoher thought:

    With beautiful architecture like this, wouldn’t a guitar/banjo/drumset/maraca/synthesizer/ukelele folk Mass seem awfully out of place? Sure it would, because the banality of the music would be so obvious in comparison to the majesty of the building and artwork. My hope is that the frequent use of the EF will not just cause a bleeding over into the worship style of the OF, but will start to affect the way we build and remodel our sanctuaries.

    For so long, Catholics have been embarrassed in front of their Protestant brethren because of the decorated sanctuaries in Catholic Churches. Protestant Calvinism tends to look unfavorably on any use of matter in worship because all creation is “totally depraved.” It’s unfortunate that we Americans are letting this mentality affect our ideas of what proper worship space should look like.

  25. Matthew Mattingly says:

    “For so long, Catholics have been embarrassed in front of their Protestant brethren because of the decorated sanctuaries in Catholic Churches

    I copied/pasted this quote from Rich R.
    I for one, was and have never been emmbarassed in front of Protestants regarding the decoration in the Catholic Church.
    In fact, I have stood up for our Church, even at work. I have the misfortune to work at a place which is mostly 100% Protestant and Evangelical/Pentecostalist. It’s not a religious enterprise or company, just that an awful lot of these people tend to proclaim their religious affiliation blatently and at times mouth off rudely about other Churches, especially Catholic. I never would be embarassed to stand up to these ignorant people. And I would hardly consider these people as our brothers/sisters in the religious sense. As human beings before God, of course. But religiously….no way!

  26. Le Renard says:

    Thank-you, Fr. Z, for such beautiful pictures of such beautiful churches!

    Compare those with the monstrosity in Los Angeles courtesy of Archbishop Baloney.

  27. Le Renard says:

    “For so long, Catholics have been embarrassed in front of their Protestant brethren because of the decorated sanctuaries in Catholic Churches”

    What are you talking about?!

    Don’t you know that there have been Protestants who have been converted because of such????

    I am talking about those Protestants who had visited Rome and came out Catholic because of the beauty of such places as the Sistine Chapel!

  28. Le Renard
    I suspect RichR is talking about those warehouse/convention hall monstrosities that pass for parish churches in most places in the United States, reaching their apex in that Taj Mahoney travesty, which passes for a Cathedral in Los Angeles.
    When built many of these places did not even have a crucifix at the altar. Most relegate the most holy object in the church, the tabernacle containing the Real Presence of our Lord, to a closet somewhere.

  29. Malta says:

    FSSP would not exist but for SSPX, since FSSP was a shoot from SSPX which wanted regularity with Rome. Summorum Pontificum, likewise, would not exist absent SSPX, since SSPX saved the traditional liturgy from near obliteration. So, we are seeing good things from the work of SSPX. I sure hope they themselves are regularized soon. That would be a blessing for the whole Church.

  30. Jordan Potter says:

    Malta said: FSSP would not exist but for SSPX, since FSSP was a shoot from SSPX which wanted regularity with Rome.

    But the SSPX would not exist but for Vatican II’s documents Sacrosanctum Consilium, Dignitatis Humanae, Gaudium et Spes, Nostra Aetate, etc. So if we are to credit the SSPX for the creation of the FSSP, then we must credit Vatican II and Annibale Bugnini for the creation of the SSPX.

    Summorum Pontificum, likewise, would not exist absent SSPX, since SSPX saved the traditional liturgy from near obliteration.

    But if it weren’t for Bugnini’s Consilium and the Novus Ordo, there would not be a traditional liturgy threatened with obliteration, so we must credit Bugnini for the existence of the SSPX and for Summorum Pontificum.

    So, we are seeing good things from the work of SSPX.

    Oh absolutely, the same kinds of good things that Annibale Bugnini’s work gave us!

  31. Different says:


    Make no mistake, all of the good that the SSPX has helped in – the preservation of the TLM, etc. – have been in spite of their schismatic acts of disobedience, not because of it.

  32. Malta says:

    Jordan wrote “But if it weren’t for Bugnini’s Consilium and the Novus Ordo, there would not be a traditional liturgy threatened with obliteration, so we must credit Bugnini for the existence of the SSPX and for Summorum Pontificum.”

    You have mastered the high art of sophistry.

    In the same vein, you could say, “If it weren’t for the Arians, there would be no St. Athanasius, so the Arians did a very good thing for the church, even though they were schismatic and within the Church at the very same time.”

    Jordan, give me something better than cute nonsense.

  33. Malta says:


    we can quibble about some of the strange comments from Bishop Williamson of late, but let\’s look directs at the act of Archbishop Lefebvere in consecrating four Biships (valid consecrations, by the way.) Let\’s look at the milieu of 1988. Here is a picture from 1984 of a mass with John Paul II:


    Now, in Lefebvre\’s mind, he had no choice but to consecrate those four Bishops given the times he was living in. Certainly things have gotten better since then, but that photo represents the extreme the Church was in at that time, and Lefebvre would have nothing to do with it, authority or not, just as St. Athanasius would have nothing to due with the heresy in his time, and was EXCOMMUNICATED FOUR TIMES because of it. Read your history, man, you might learn something there! We are living in a crisis of unprecedented proportions! I wouldn\’t be surprised if Lefebvre becomes a saint someday. BTW: have you ever read about how fast the cause of sainthood for Paul VI was tabled, want to know why? Again, read your history….

  34. mwa says:

    This church is at the Piazza of the same name right near the Ponte Sisto, not far from the Campo de’ Fiori; San Gregorio dei Muratori is on Via Leccosa, a little north of Piazza Navona–check their website at http://www.fssp-roma.org/en/maps.htm

  35. danphunter1 says:

    Jordan Potter,
    There would be no need to have to fight, tooth and nail, to get the immemorial Tridentine Mass back in our churches if the fabrication of Archbishop Bugnini: the Novus Ordo, and certain documents of the Second Vatican Council never came into existence in the first place.
    We would still have our priests offering the Tridentine Mass in all Catholic churches, and there would be no need for irregular society’s or document after document attempting to repair all the damage that has been done in the last forty years, just to go forward from where the Church left off in 1962.
    Happy Advent.

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