Great news from Raleigh, NC: Epiphany – Solemn Mass coram pontifice

I get some very good new via e-mail about what is happening in the Diocese of Raleigh about Summorum Pontificum and the use of the older form of Mass.  You will remember that Bishop Burbidge is really stepping up to the plate in implementing the Holy Father’s provisions.

Here is a piece from the diocesan website

The Forma extraordinaria of the Mass will be celebrated at Sacred Heart Cathedral on the Solemnity of the Epiphany, Sunday, January 6, at 4:30 PM. Father Paul Parkerson, pastor of Sacred Heart in Dunn, will be the celebrant for this Mass in the presence of the Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge. Beginning with this Mass, the Forma extraordinaria will be celebrated at the Cathedral on the first Sunday of every month at 4:30 PM.

At present, three other churches in the Diocese of Raleigh have scheduled regular celebrations of the Forma extraordinaria:

    * Saint Therese Church in Wrightsville Beach is celebrating the Forma extraordinaria on the last Sunday of each month at 3:30 PM.
    * Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Rocky Mount is celebrating the Forma extraordinaria on the second Sunday of each month at 4:00 PM.
    * The Mass at Sacred Heart Church in Dunn, which had been celebrated each week at 4:00 p.m., is now celebrated at 12:00 p.m.

In his letter announcing the implementation of the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum on September 7, 2007, Bishop Burbidge said it was his intention “to make the Forma extraordinaria more available to the faithful.” He noted resources would be made available “to those priests who are able and choose to study how to properly celebrate the Forma extraordinaria of the Mass so that he and the people of God will be best served.”

Liturgical formation for priests interested in celebrating the Forma extraordinaria continues with a workshop scheduled January 8-10 at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Newton Grove. Fourteen priests are expected to attend.

As priests receive the necessary formation to celebrate the Mass, it will be made available at more parishes in the Diocese, where possible.

This is exceptionally good news.  We applaud Bp. Burbidge for his good work.

On that note: I received this notice from Raleigh via e-mail:

[N]ext week – on Tuesday, Jan 8 – Thurs. Jan. 10, there will be a training seminar for several priests of the diocese (at least – but more like 10-12) in how to offer the TLM. We have asked Fr. Robert Ferguson, FSSP, to teach the "workshop".

Also, check this site for some photos.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Good for Bishop Burbidge and his diocese.

    Hopefully, in training more priests for the TLM they will be able to have at least weekly Masses rather than once a month as it appears to be at 3 out of the 4 locations. It’s very important for the faithful to feel they have a home.

  2. danphunter1 says:

    God bless His Excellency Bishop Burbidge for his holy obedience to the Supreme Pontiff.
    I have given His Excellency an altar missal 1962 and we hope and pray that Bishop Burbidge will offer the Tridentine Mass from the Cathedral someday soon.
    Please pray for His Excellency and please keep in your prayers the intentions of the bishop and Father Parkerson as well as a well sung and holy choir for the Feast of the Epiphany.
    If able please come this Sunday to the Cathedral for the Solemn High Mass at 4:30.
    God bless the Diocese of Raleigh and Ecce Sacerdos Magnus!

  3. Anon from Raleigh says:


    In those pictures of the Bishop at Immaculate Conception Church, he is actually saying a Novus Ordo. But he is saying it ad orientem, which is awesome.

  4. Jeremy says:

    Praised be Jesus Christ!
    Thank you, Holy Father!
    Thank you, Bishop Burbidge!
    Thank you, Fathers Parkerson, Meares and Ferguson! (The latter is a priest of the Fraternity)
    This afternoon’s extraordinary form of the Mass at the smallest cathedral in the continental United States was, well, EXTRAORDINARY!!!
    There were ten priests (including the bishop), around eight seminarians and standing room ONLY. (This week, an additional 15 diocesan priests from the Raleigh Diocese will attend a training session for the extraordinary form) The bishop’s MC, who is in formation for the permanent diaconate, was one of the altar servers.
    Bishop Burbidge delivered a splendid homily citing the Holy Father’s sermon for the Feast of the Epiphany.
    The choir was angelic.
    Don’t forget next Sunday’s extraordinary form of the Mass in the Diocese of Charlotte. A High Mass is being planned for SUN 13 January, 3:30 p.m. at Our Lady of Grace church in Greensboro [Father Ferguson], Propers for Holy Family. It is possible that Bishop Jugis will be in choir.

  5. Aelric says:

    This was my first traditional rite or extraordinary form mass (in person) since, well, probably a very young child. It was very moving. Bishop Burbidge is a blessing for this diocese and I hope and pray that his efforts to expand the EF take root and grow.

    There were some opportunities missed in my view:

    1. The rector of the cathedral, in his remarks prior to mass, twice made the ubiquitous confusion between “Latin” and the Form or rite of Mass (as though Latin Mass = Extraordinary Form). This seems inexcusable from someone in such a position.

    2. Yes, the bishop made reference to the Holy Father (no doubt) being pleased by the dioceses’ efforts to implement Summorum Pontificum. True enough. But I believe an opportunity was missed by failing to say that God would be pleased by right worship according to the norms of Holy Church. In other words, instead of making it seem that implementing SP was based on “making the Holy Father happy” the bishop might have emphasized the fact that we were here recovering a sense of authentic Catholic worship (fitting homage to God) and continuity with the historical worship of the Church that has, to a large extent, been lost. And that, by this recovery, sanctification and salvation of souls is achieved.

    3. There was, pardon the pun, mass confusion regarding the people’s posture during the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar up to the Gloria. I think more explicit guidance with the printed rubrics might have helped. Is this a fairly common occurrence with parishes learning their way into the EF? What is appropriate?

    We should have had a WDTPRS pew reserved!

  6. Corvus says:

    This was my first High Mass in the Extraordinary form. I have no recollection of life before Vatican II, so here are some of my observations without any nostalgia. The organist was good, not great, but good. The place was full, something expected for such a small Cathedral, although I did not see people standing from my vantage point near the front. It appeared that everyone in the sanctuary knew what they were doing, and there was no obvious confusion, although the bishop did not appear to know the latin all that well. It would have been useful if it was announced that the musical settings for the Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, et.c were actually in the Ritual Song hymnbook. The high mass clearly stands up to the rituals of the eastern churches. The choir was reasonable although I would not consider it angelic. Like most choirs, there was a lack of voice blending while everyone tries to sing in full voice. Oddly, there was no harmony for Panis Angelicus during communion. The homily from the Bishop was, frankly, a disappointment. Prior to giving an amorphous discourse on God is Love, he essentially said we have unity now, Rome is going to like what I am doing, and time to pay up with the Bishop’s Annual Appeal. He could have used his homily as an opportunity for catechesis on continuity of the Roman Rite, the historical aspect of the first high mass in that cathedral in about 45 years, etc. Clearly this mass is a tremendous about of work for the priest, deacons, subdeacons, choir and organist. I certainly appreciate the work and effort that went into it. If they had a High Mass once a month, I would go in the hopes that it would get better. Hopefully having the extraordinary form will help improve the ordinary form of the mass.

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