Good news from St. Louis

I received this nice note by e-mail from Fr. Gregory Lockwood (edited):

Greetings from the Archdiocese of Saint Louis; [THERE WERE PHOTOS… but embedded in the e-mail and too time consuming for me to edit and then upload to my own server]

Assumption is a ‘70’s church, so we had to make some accomodation to the architecture-not enough steps, so we used the first pew as the communion rail; my pastor got the altar moved back two feet in December

So we could get in front of it (note the beautiful new granite floor-it was ugly wine-colored carpet before). The attendance for this particular mass was on par with our other holy day novus ordo (English) masses-

We had close to three-hundred people in attendance. We begin weekly sung masses January 13th, on Sunday afternoon (so as not to interfere with the regular Sunday schedule), as well as holy days.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. John F. says:

    I am from St. Louis and would like to know if this is Assumption in Mattese

  2. Brendan says:

    John, it appears to be Assumption in STL proper:

  3. Hugh Berengar says:

    Fr. Lockwood should be commended for his excellent service to Christ.

  4. Marilyn says:

    I am also from St. Louis, and this is Assumption in Mattese (on Mattis Road). I had heard this was coming, but I wasn’t sure whether to believe it or not. Does anyone know how this came to be? Did people in the parish request it, or was it the pastor or one of the priests who decided to institute it? In any case, this is great news.

  5. Timothy James says:

    Ah, the effects of having a good Bishop…

  6. AlephGamma says:

    The parish is not in STL city limits itself but close to what appears to be Arnold, Missouri – but STL is close enough for some folks. There used to be a Latin service near the AB brewery near downtown Soulard – Saint Agnes I think – but some local inner city politics was fomenting some dissent that had some pastors shuffled about.

  7. Tom says:

    Everything sounded good…the exception: “We begin weekly sung masses January 13th, on Sunday afternoon (so as not to interfere with the regular Sunday schedule), as well as holy days.”

    It is unfortunate that despite having been “liberated” from Indult status, the Traditional Latin Mass remains an intruder of sorts.

    Perhaps the second-class, “excuse me, may we offer the TLM…we will try not to interfere with the ‘regular’ schedule” status to which the TLM was subjected for decades will one day disappear.

    For now, Catholics attached to the TLM are like just-liberated slaves…they still walk with their heads bowed.

  8. Andy says:


    Exactly. We are having the same issue in my parish. They give us the
    Mass, but it is at a terrible time for everyone. Our attendance, while still high, suffers as a result. We are still pushing to get
    Mass during the week, at a time that people can actually go to it.

  9. Tom: Patience is needed. It takes no time at all to tear down a building, but a long time to build one well. These small gains are important.

  10. Tom says:

    “Patience is needed. It takes no time at all to tear down a building, but a long time to build one well. These small gains are important.”

    Father, I appreciate your point. I thank God for you. I realize that on your great blog, I’m considered by many as impatient and even shrill. But Father, I wonder at times whether I am too patient. Perhaps I am not sufficiently shrill.

    Example: Last month at my parish, a Catholic group was permitted to place a table in the narthex of our church. The table held Christmas decorations and assorted figurines. The group was permitted to sell their goods.

    A row of glass (and glass doors) separates the narthex from the main church…and as several people usually assist at Mass from the narthex, a loudspeaker carries the audio from the Mass.

    I stood in the narthex and even as Mass unfolded, one person after another would enter from the parking lot, stop at the table and literally shopped for decorations and figurines.

    The ushers watched that sorry spectacle…I and about 20 people in the narthex couldn’t help but see and hear the “shoppers.”

    After a few minutes at the table, “shoppers” would then carry their plastic bags into the church to assist at the Mass they had ignored.

    Father, I remain disgusted at myself for not having mustered the guts to have stood up for the Father, Son and Holy Ghost that day.

    The scene of Jesus and the moneychangers in the Temple had unfolded before me.

    But I (and everybody else in the narthex…and the ushers) failed to ask the people at the table to cease business activities during Mass.

    I wish that I had been “shrill” and impatient that day. I should have been impatient. I was not impatient.

    I could give any number of examples that point to the collapse of the Western Church that I have witnessed during the post-Vatican II Era.

    Father, if I am impatient and even shrill, then I believe that I have every reason to be impatient and shrill.

    I am not John The Baptist. I am not a great man. I am a lowly nobody.

    But somebody…somebody…has to speak up forcefully in regard to the horrific collapse of the Western Church that our Churchmen…yes, our Churchmen…have created.

    I didn’t create the “two forms” of the Roman Mass. I didn’t create “Novus Ordo” Catholics and “Traditional” Catholics.

    Father, I realize that the process of liturgical restoration will take considerable time and effort to achieve.

    I thank God for you and your great and important blog.

    I do not mean to be shrill and impatient just to be nasty or disagreeable. I believe that a place for me and my ilk exists within the Church.

    Although my approach may be unpopular, I think we need to ask certain questions and advance certain opinions.

    Finally…Father (or anybody), if you have read to this point, then thank you for your patience. I’m so impatient that I doubt that I will read my own post. :-)

  11. Fr. Gregory J. Lockwood says:

    Tom, let me add to what Fr. Z has already said. Our mass time is not the best, initially, but who knows what will happen if we are faithful? A weekday mass, though able to be done, doesn’t satisfy the weekly mass obligation for the traditional Catholic; we are trying to serve, initially, those people. The next step is to see if the mass can be, eventually, moved into the morning mass schedule. I can foresee a time when, perhaps, one of our two daily masses is in the extraordinary form also; I see weddings, baptisms (I already give penitents a choice of Latin or English absolution), funerals, all done according to the historic forms, in the future. Has the wait been hard to bear? Certainly. Is there a sense of exclusion? Sure. However, I can say this with some confidence: Summorum Pontificum is a watershed in our history that places us squarely back in the historical tradition of our faith; it repairs, to a great extent, the perceived rupture with our liturgical past, and from now on, all good things are possible for those who have patience and trust. Please pray for us, here at Assumption, Mattese, as we take but the first step in providing to our catholic faithful what is theirs by right: a well-celebrated liturgy in line with our faith and tradition.

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