I got this by e-mail:
I got your blogsite from members at MusicaSacra, and they suggested I contact you. I had not known of your page, but enjoyed perusing it this morning.
At Saint Peter Chanel in Hawaiian Gardens, CA, USA, we had been having a Tridentine low Mass for a few months (since November, I believe).
Yesterday, the Pastor came out (before the recessional) and announced that the head of his order–The Oblates of the Virgin Mary–had ordered his priests to stop saying the indult Mass because it was an "apostolate" that the OMV does not embrace. He also said that the 170 person average Sunday attendance was insufficient to justify the Mass (in spite of the fact that we had only a Low Mass and had been relegated to the old Church–kneeling on a concrete floor–and were not interfering with N.O. masses). Daily Mass goers would certainly be shocked and disappointed to find that daily Masses were cancelled due to less than 200 person attendance, and I have never been to a Tridentine Mass in LA or OC with anywhere near 200 people, so I thought we were doing well. He also said that the Mass had been conducted on an "experimental basis," but I hadn’t heard that the Pope called for a conditional experiment. We have a stable group, and the MP doesn’t specify a minimum number.
There were openly expressed protests to the decision as the pastor announced it, but he was obstinant and adamant. I plan to disenroll from the parish and go about twice as far to a TM in Huntington Beach, which I hear started up again. I’m hurt and distraught, and it seems the OMV (allegedly) is openly defying the Pope’s expressed wishes.
Can you suggest any actions (in addition to prayer, which we’re already trying) to have the situation reversed again, and permanently this time? I’m afraid the parish has lost the trust of some of their most faithful parishoners, and only with difficulty might regain it. I had even joined the fledgling choir, and we spent much time, energy, and money to get the musical resources we needed for the High Mass we were told by another priest was being planned. I became invigorated spiritually by even this Low TM as I hadn’t been in over a decade, and this cancellation has really devastated me. What can we do?
Other than making this known to the many people who read this blog, I cannot help much. However, I suggest that you collect as much concrete information as possible, such as bulletin comments and then make this situation know to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.
Please follow my tips for writing.
Some more details about the situation are in a forum post at
According to the writer on that page, the prohibition came from the OMVs’ Superior General, Fr. Patrice Veraquin. OMVs have been involved with indult Masses in various cities, so this is a puzzling announcement.
One can only hope that the Ecclesia Dei commission will clarify what is proper.
You are fighting an uphill battle against all odds. The general hostility of the clergy and religious orders to
the Holy Father’s initiative will doom the TLM except in a few fortunate places. It will be decades
before there is any reform, if it ever occurs.
This brings up a interesting point, that I have been asking about here and there. What are the rights of a religious order priest if they want to celebrate the Mass in the Extraordinary Rite, can a monk for instance enjoy the benefits of the ER, how might this compare to a member of a active order?
In North Carolina, alone, the Church went from having not one single diocesan aproved Tridentine Mass in 2003 [other than the SSPX Mass that was offered regularly in three different places]
to once a month in one church, in the same year, to every Sunday in 2004.
And now there are four other churches that offer the Mass once per month, including the diocesan Cathedral,not to mention the ten that will begin in the Diocese of Charlotte at some point this year..
There are at least 30 priests in the state that are learning the Tridentine Mass and the Bishop of Raleigh wholeheartedly supports the so called ,”Extraordinary Form”.
There is great hope in the United States for the spread of the Immemorial Tridentine mAss.
This sounds very strange to me. I was once a seminarian with the Oblates before leaving them to join the FSSP, and although I do not know the current superior general mentioned, I never thought the OMV’s to be hostile to the TLM. Indeed, the rector tried to talk me out of leaving telling me that I would also be able to celebrate the TLM as an Oblate! I found the OMV’s to be at least liturgically conservative and also very faithful to the Holy Father, so this news indeed sounds puzzling.
This sounds very strange to me. I was once a seminarian with the Oblates before leaving them to join the FSSP, and although I do not know the current superior general mentioned, I never thought the OMV\’s to be hostile to the TLM. Indeed, the rector tried to talk me out of leaving telling me that I would also be able to celebrate the TLM as an Oblate! I found the OMV\’s to be at least liturgically conservative and also very faithful to the Holy Father, so this news indeed sounds puzzling.
Hi. In my diocese, in Italy, we have the same situation (even worse) with an important Order (sorry, I can’t say which one, for the moment we must keep silent).
I spoke with officials in Vatican and they gave me a line of conduct.
So, if you want contact me: ask Father Z. for my e-mail and I’ll share the suggestions we got at a very high level.
Do not despair: our endurance is strengthened by persecutions
Jim… have to agree with Dan on this one… we went from 1 Mass per month at one location to now 4 Sunday morning Masses in the Diocese, a Daily Mass at one location and plans for a fifth Sunday Mass and a second daily Mass in the south end of the Diocese. All of this while our FSSP Priest (who was brought here by the Bishop) is training our Priests in the EF. There is A LOT happening in a lot of places. There are bad spots of course, but I think your prediction is a bit overly pessimistic, unless of course you were hoping for an overnight change in every church to exclusive use of the EF.
I wonder if the Bishop should be informed of the situation,
with proofs and witnesses, and ask him to mediate a solution
to this unfortunate incident.
I fear that if the PCED is is reached first, the local Bishop
will be angry for not being consulted.
I think Derik Castillo gives good advice.
Firstly, the bishop is to be consulted.
If he can do nothing, then the matter is referred to the Pontifical “Ecclesia Dei” Commission.
If the Oblates are an exempt order of pontifical right, which I belive they are, they will not look kindly on an attempt to involve the bishop in what they would consider an internal matter.
My suggestion is that people go to their general first with their complaints and then to Rome.
“Please follow my tips for writing.”
( Also with regards to Enrico )
Very good points, Father. Good for an amicable exchange. I think something short and to the point is also in order. “Are you going to allow the Tridentine Mass again or do you want your donations cut off?”
Matt Q: You do raise a good point. People have an obligation to support Holy Church with their “time, treasure and talent”. But there are various ways to fulfill that obligation.
My experience has been that people who attend the older form of Mass can be quite generous.
That is something practical for pastors and bishops to consider.
“You are fighting an uphill battle against all odds. The general hostility of the clergy and religious orders to the Holy Father’s initiative will doom the TLM except in a few fortunate places. It will be decades before there is any reform, if it ever occurs.”
Sadly, Jim, you are right. Merely setting an example or allowing things to occur does nothing. Until Rome sets a mandate with censures or penalties, there will be no progress, no advancing of the Tridentine Mass and no reforming of the Novus Ordo. This chaotic morass goes on and on.
The Oblate community in Hawaiian Gardens is very orthodox and their approach works for the surrounding community. The area of the city in which the parish is located is of low to mid-socioeconomic status. The parish has like five or six masses every Sunday and their Spanish Masses are usually bursting at the seams. The folks at the OVM main office in Boston are less orthodox than the Oblates stationed in Hawaiian Gardens. It’s appears a Bostonian approach doesn’t apply to the general community served by the Oblates in Hawaiian Gardens.
I attend a parish in the Archdiocese of Denver, Holy Ghost, that is staffed by O.M.V. priests and they are extremely orthodox. We have a Novus Ordo High Mass in latin each Sunday and it is well attended. I know Fr. Ed Broom (from St Joseph’s radio) is an associate pastor at the church in Hawaiian Gardens and he is certainly orthodox. Before we start jumping to conclusions here we need to get the entire story. The O.M.V.’s are not a bunch of dungaree-wearing, pot-smoking, magisterium-denying, felt banner creating, Henri Nouwen reading, “we are Resurrection people and Alleluia is our song” priests.
“The Oblate community in Hawaiian Gardens is very orthodox and their approach works for the surrounding community. The area of the city in which the parish is located is of low to mid-socio-economic status. The parish has like five or six masses every Sunday and their Spanish Masses are usually bursting at the seams. The folks at the OVM main office in Boston are less orthodox than the Oblates stationed in Hawaiian Gardens. It’s appears a Bostonian approach doesn’t apply to the general community served by the Oblates in Hawaiian Gardens.”
Well said, Hicardo, but that’s the way it went. So, now what?
I may be wrong about the above statement about the orders coming from Boston. They may be from the Oblates in Italy, who are way more liberal than the American Oblates.
As I expressed at the other forum, I’m confused by several points.
First of all, there’s no such creature as an “indult parish” or “indult Mass” any longer, thanks to Papa Ratzinger and the MP (am I correct)?
Second of all, I wasn’t aware that either the EF or the OF were an “apostolate” to “be embraced.”
It was pointed out to me that section 3 of the MP makes it pretty clear that order priests must comply with the superior of their community on this point, but I had the impression that this dealt with the celebration of the EF in a monastic community setting, not with priests serving a diocesan parish. Can somebody clarify this point?
Fr. Augustine Thompson O.P.
Thanks for your comment. It is true that the first one to be informed
is the Superior General. I may be wrong, but according to the post,
it may be him who came up with the decision we are discussing.
What was in my mind is what I read in the letter of His Holiness to
the Bishops with respect to the Motu Proprio:
‘Each Bishop, in fact, is the moderator of the liturgy in his own Diocese (cf. Sacrosanctum Concilium, 22)’
Fr. Augustine Thompson O.P.
I am sorry, I did not write my point clearly. I do not wish the
Bishop to impose something on the OMV. I would like to thing that
it is possible to relocate that Mass, with the help of the
I must respond. In my neck of the woods (Santa Rosa Diocese, CA), the bishop claims to have taken a poll of the priests, and only one was at all interested in the TLM. I know from personal experience that 98% of the priests in this diocese are hostile to the concept. I suspect that Santa Rosa is not alone in this. Our diocese, which stretches from Marin County to the Oregon border has only one TLM —in Petaluma. One has to drive for hours to attend it. Some of you folks live in areas where hostility is less vigorous; but Santa Rosa lies within the Left Coast. I do not expect to see real reform in my lifetime. The liturgical abuses in this area remain rampant.
St Peter Chanel is one of the most — if not the most — orthodox and devotional parishes in the archdiocese. E.g., there are more confessions heard here on an average weekday morning at SPC than are heard in most American parishes in a month of Saturdays. In a sense, this is part of the “problem”. These priests take their vows seriously; if there has been a directive from their religious superiors, there is no earthly way these priests will disobey it.
The Archdiocese in question is Los Angeles. The suggestion to write the archbishop makes one smile. (Yes, I am old and cynical. I got that way in this Archdiocese.)
Finally, the Mass at St Peter Chanel is not the only Sunday Mass in the area in the extraordinary form. St Theresa’s in Alhambra has one at 1 p.m. every Sunday. The Mass at noon at St Mary’s by the Sea (a touch less than a half hour’s drive from St Peter chanel) in the Diocese of Orange has resumed. Ss Peter and Paul in Wilmington has an early morning Mass — 6:15 a.m., IIRC. And our wonderful Fr Robert Bishop is still celebrating the indult “circuit” Masses each Sunday. (Check the Una Voce Los Angeles site for the details; it gets a bit complicated.)
Yes, I was there last Sunday when Fr. Larry announced this at St .Peter Chanel Catholic Church . I have been a parishioner there for almost ten years. We will be collecting signatures to ask Bishop Salazar the local regional Bishop to provide a priest to offer the Extraordinary form of The Holy Mass. I did talk to Fr.Larry and told him of my displeasure of what has taken place. I asked him for a copy of the letter Fr.Patrice Veraquin theRector Major of The Oblates based in Rome. Fr.Larry said he does’t have it and that I would have to contact Fr. Bill Brown the Provental in Boston for it. Fr. Larry said we have every right to do this. Don’t leave the parish! We need to stand up and fight this injustice! We have a great community here at St. Peter Chanel that participate in the Triditine Mass. Don’t leave us! I did send a email to Fr. Bill Brown last night on behalf of our community of Triditine Mass parishioners, requesting a copy of the letter. please contact me so you can sign our pettion and spread the news to others you know. God has blessed us with wonderful and holy priests at St. Peter Chanel. My email address is email@example.com May God Bless you, Susan Teissere
The Mass at Sts. Peter and Paul in Wilmington is now 6:30 AM, (not 6:15, as reported) just in case you need the extra sleep. ;) they also have some ad hoc Fri. eve. Masses. That is about 15 min. max drive I would say. Beautiful, old style church, BTW. Norbertine’s (conservative).
Dear Hawaiian Gardens Parishioner:
Don’t feel bad. Ave Maria, Florida (yes– the great “so called” traditional Catholic town) has not had a Latin High Mass yet. There is one brave priest who celebrates the Latin Low Mass at 6:30 in the morning as often as he can, because the lay administrators of the Ave Maria University chapel won’t allow the Latin Mass to take place, in spite of the local Bishop’s request that it be celebrated seven days a week, at a “convenient” time.
“St Peter Chanel is one of the most—if not the most—orthodox and devotional parishes in the archdiocese. E.g., there are more confessions heard here on an average weekday morning at SPC than are heard in most American parishes in a month of Saturdays. In a sense, this is part of the “problem.” These priests take their vows seriously; if there has been a directive from their religious superiors, there is no earthly way these priests will disobey it.
The Archdiocese in question is Los Angeles. The suggestion to write the archbishop makes one smile. (Yes, I am old and cynical. I got that way in this Archdiocese.)
Finally, the Mass at St Peter Chanel is not the only Sunday Mass in the area in the extraordinary form. St Theresa’s in Alhambra has one at 1 p.m. every Sunday. The Mass at noon at St Mary’s by the Sea (a touch less than a half hour’s drive from St Peter Chanel) in the Diocese of Orange has resumed. Ss Peter and Paul in Wilmington has an early morning Mass—6:15 a.m., IIRC. And our wonderful Fr Robert Bishop is still celebrating the indult “circuit” Masses each Sunday. (Check the Una Voce Los Angeles site for the details; it gets a bit complicated.)”
Amen, Amen, I say unto you, John, as a fellow Angeleno. LOL I know exactly what you are talking about, and how easy it is to become cynical in this “billion-dollar poorer archdiocese.”
I love Father Robert. He says the Tridentine Mass flawlessly and it’s always a joy to go to his Masses.
I was once a seminarian with the OMV in Boston. While they’re all great guys, I would be SHOCKED if Fr. Bill Brown ever appealed the decision of Fr. Patrice. Even the principal pastor of St. Clement’s, Fr. Peter, a wonderful priest, said no to a suggestion a few years ago for a Eucharistic procession on Corpus Christi. The point is the OMV aren’t a liturgically-centered congregation, as oxymoronic as that may seem to some readers. They give good Ignatian retreats and they’re orthodox in the postconciliar fashion, but they certainly don’t “rock the boat” in any way. They’re not going to be liturgical trailblazers, liberal or traditional. Too bad, they’d be a good congregation to show people that traditionalists aren’t all about liturgy; they also promote Catholic spirituality and good works.
Fr. Patrice, being French, may not understand the historical neutrality of the Latin Mass in America. In the US, it doesn’t have the “baggage” that some ascribe to it in Europe, IMHO.
Thank you Bostonian for your comment. Iam a parishioner at St. Peter Chanel. We have processions. I don’t see offfering the extraordinary form of the Holy Mass is seen by some in the OMV as rocking the boat or being a trailblazer. The OMV claims to be in support of our Holy Father , but the top leadership of the OMV is being disobedient and appears to be in dissent to the The Vicar Christ. We have very holy and dedicated priests at St. Peter Chanel, that inspire me to live a Catholic Faith to its fullest!I have never heard a homily that was contradictory to the Churchs Teachings or to the Holy Father himself. On Sunday when Fr. Larry Darnell announced that Fr.Patrice has forbidden the OMV to offer publicaly the extraordinary form of The Holy Mass, everyone was in shock!!The reason that were given to us by Fr.Larry , that Fr.Patrice said were that it wasn’t the “Apostolic Work” of the OMV.I looked to my wife and said” when is not offering the Holy Mass for a ordained Roman Catholic priest not an Apostolic Work?” Fr. Larry said Fr. Patrice Veraquin sent a letter stating the Triditine Mass is forbbidden. Fr.Larry told all of that it was only experminent and Fr.Patrice was out here in November and didn’t like what he saw. Fr.Larry didn’t give the reasons for Fr.Patrices displeasure however. Fr.Larry said you were all fortunate to have the Triditine Masss this long, Fr.Patrice could have discountinued it back in November! Iam thinking Oh! how generous of him! Fr.Larry told us to go somewhere else for the Triditine Mass,he gave two locations one in Wilmington at 6:30 in the morning or St. Therese in Alambra at 1pm which is a far drive for us parishioners. I thought Wow ! just throw us out of the parish! This is so un pastoral of Fr.Larry! I couldn’t believe what he was saying. It was like invasion of the body snachers! It appears that the devil doesn’t want the extraordinary form of the Holy Mass for some reason! Iam not leaving we are going to fight this!
The OVM are in disobedience report them to Rome
Most Catholics are not versed in their faith and fail to realize we need No Pope
to authorize the True Mass which was codified for all times by Pope St Pius V.
Find a Chapel that does not adhere to the Robber Vatican II sect.
Iam truely versed in the Catholic Faith! Michael you say we need no Pope! What become a protestant ! No thanks! I will stick with Jesus Christ and His Church, whom his vicar is Pope BenedictXVI. I would never leave the Bride Christ for any reason especially as she is being attacked by those from “within” and those from without. Someday I will have to answer to God. I can’t say to God” Oh! I despaired and became a “chapel catholic” because there were “Judas” priests in your Chruch.” That’s not going to go over too well!
I posted the original post: thanks, Fr. Z. I received a response from Fr. Bill Brown, Boston OMV provincial. He was cordial, but unapologetic and offered no reason whatsoever, let alone his own opinion. Perhaps it is out of his hands, but he removed me from the OMV mailing list at my request and said he’d pray we find somewhere else to go. Instead, I’ve changed my mind, and agree with the other SPC parishioners that we’ll fight this one. My question is, do we request a reversal of the OMV policy, or do we ask for a non-OMV priest to supply our “stable group” a TLM? The other problems I see are the lack of trust that now exist between priests and parishioners, and the obvious fact that–according to his own words–the Pastor himself doesn’t want the TLM there, although at least two of his priests definitely do. He said his superior forbad it, but said himself there were too few of us attending, as if that matters even if it were true. Having written the US provincial, I got the name and address of his superior:
Fr Patrice Veraquin, OMV
Viale Trenta Aprile 17
00153 Roma, Italia.
The battle continues…
This is very disappointing that the Superior General, Father Patrice Veraquin, OVM, has failed to embrace the Motu Proprio. The beautiful Ignation retreats on humility and obedience also apply to Superior Generals. Rome has spoken. Where is the obedience?
If that is true, then the 170 people should all unite and not attend the Novus Ordo Mass. The Motu Proprio in your side. So show your enthousiasm for the Lord by taking the above action.Call a strike on the Novus which is harmful to your soul anyway.
The people who desire the Tridentine Mass at St. Peter Chanel have no intention of pitting Masses against each other. The Tridentine is allowed and obedience to the Holy Father is the best example of pastoral leadership. Making a comment about the Novus Ordo being harmful only serves to divide. These type of comments are not from parishioners, they are from people who have been subjected to such liturgical abuse that they are stating what the chaos of certain circus-like Masses has inspired them to. This is very sad but it is the consequence of much liturgical abuse in many areas.
I am very disappointed with Fr. Darnell’s announcement. I left St. Peter and St. Paul Church because the Norbertine pastor, Fr. Perez, made the TLM crowd feel like second-class citizens. Fr. Michael is the one who always says the 6:30 a.m. TLM there. Fr. Perez never says it because he obviously does not like it and would like to see it go away. Even though St. Peter and St. Paul is a very beautiful, traditional church, I will not go back there after all Fr. Perez put us through. This leaves many of us in limbo again. The nearest TLM is St. Mary’s by the Sea in HB.
Yes, Eileen you are right! we the parishioners of St. Peter Chanel don’t pit or will ever pit the two Forms against each other! We are about following the Motu Proprio and our rights the Holy Father has given to us. We love all the priest at St.Peter Chanel and The Oblates of The Blessed Virgin Mary Order. We will exercise our rights we have in a proper and charitable way and we are asking the same of The leadership of The Oblate Order. We are asking them to reconsider and reinstate the public offering of Extra-Ordinary Form of The Holy Mass. The leadership of The Oblates, by forbidding the Extra-Ordinary Form has caused scandal to even those parishioners who don’t participate in this Form. Please join in our petition to the local ordinary. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org , also please send a letter or email to Fr.Willam Brown the Provincal in Boston and Fr. Patrice Veraquin, The Major Rector in Rome. You can call St.Peter Chanel Church for their addresses, be sure to leave Fr.Larry the pastor a note as well. Ask for Carmen, she works in the office, I’m sure the other women working will give you the information. Keep it charitable and honest!
Yesterday I went to the web site of this particular Oblate order (which probably differs from other Oblates we’re more familiar with) and found out that its founder, the Venerable Bruno Lanteri, while studying in Turin as a seminarian, met one Fr. Nicholas von Diessbach and under his spiritual guidance, developed a great love for the Holy Father and faithfulness to Church teaching.
I wrote to their Provincial in Boston, reminding him of this fact and asking him why his order now seems to have the opposite opinion of the Pope and Church teaching.
I urge all of you to do the same. Let him hear from all Catholics who are scandalized by such a complete reversal of their founder’s mentality. It will do them good to hear it.
And Suzanna is right. Don’t leave the parish. Stay and fight. Take your parish back from those who have corrupted it. Hang in there until the Ecclesia Dei Commission has responded. If it backs you up, what good will it do if you’re no longer there?
It’s sad that some Norbertines are anti-Tradition, too, since they’re far more liturgically sound than the OMV. At St. Michael’s Abbey, they have NO Latin High Masses that are inspiring. Some of their priests seem happy to celebrate the TLM, and it should be noted certain OMV priests at SPC were very excited about it, too, which makes the real motives suspect. I wonder if they might leave and join the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter or something similar.
This saddens me coming from the OMV’s. The priests at St. Peter Chanels are very holy and inspiring. As a matter of fact I’m discerning their order. (And I will be offering the TLM when I become ordained).
I go to St. Thérèse Church in Alhambra and as well serve the TLM’s there. hopefully the situation will be resolved. Fr. Robert Bishop CMF is a very holy priest and offers the Mass with reverence, all of you are welcome here. I believe the situation will be solved soon though.
How do these orders think that they are going to thrive? The OMV’s are sending out a big RED FLAG that is warning potential seminarians to “STAY AWAY IF YOU ARE COMPLETELY OBEDIENT TO THE HOLY FATHER”! There is not a shortage of vocations, there is an abundance of disobedience that self-destructs it’s very own purpose. This selfish act will cause a great lack of trust to ever investigate this order. Prayers should be offered for all of the obedient OVM’s who have been hurt by this decision. I am sure that they are suffering for everyone concerned, even their disobedient Superiors.
Again, thanks for all the support and prayers. Two addresses for those who wish to let the OMV know how we feel, especially those who attend(ed) the TLM at SPC, and those discerning orders or members of the OMV. I have written Fr Brown and am writing Father Patricio (snail mail) to request a reversal of this decision or, lacking that, an Archdiocesan priest to travel to SPC to say the Tridentine Mass for us.
Fr Bill Brown’s email is:
The OMV international (whose letter was said to be responsible for this) is:
Fr Patrice Veraquin, OMV
Viale Trenta Aprile 17
00153 Roma, Italia
Strength through Tradition.