A shot in the sacristy

Our friend John Sonnen of Orbis Catholicus shot a photo in the sacristy of Ss. Trinita dei Pelegrini of me with an old friend in Rome, Msgr. Ignacio Barreiro, who runs the Rome office of HLI. 

This was last week at the end of the conference on Summorum Pontificum.

Thanks John!  Keep up the good work!


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    AAARGH! Lace everywhere!

  2. JML says:

    And who said Priests can’t be happy or have fun?

  3. Brian Day says:


    Looking good, Fr Z.

  4. Magdalen Ross says:

    Hey IS,

    some of that is MY lace. And no one is forcing YOU to wear it.

  5. TJM says:

    How debonair, Father Z! You both look great. Tom

  6. Geoffrey says:

    What’s that book you have in your hand, Father? The Liber Usualis? A hand missal?

    I am obsessed with books. So often I want to walk around the church when I am at the “old” Mass and see what kinds of missals are being used!

  7. Ioannes Andreades says:

    “Greek, Sir, is like lace; every man gets as much of it as he can.”

  8. Chad says:

    When is the purple pom allowed for a Msgr? Just curioius

  9. Eric says:

    So that’s who stole archbishop Pilarczyk’s glasses!

  10. IS says:

    lace… the worst excesses of the 1950s… I don’t mind a bit… but not tonnes… like the new marini wears.

  11. Wilf says:

    Lookin’ sharp!

    (Awesome birettas)

  12. Jack007 says:

    I find it remarkable that there is ANY animosity towards lace.
    I wonder if it might be in some misplaced sexual stereotypes?

    All I know is that lace went out with the TLM, Benediction, Roman style chasubles…oh, is there a pattern here?

    I never met a liberal priest who didn’t HATE lace.

    When you see a priest wearing a lace alb, or surplice, you can pretty much bet it ain’t Father Bob who likes puppets at his liturgies.

    When I see a priest in a lace alb and a Roman chasuble, I know I’m home. These things do make statements and there’s nothing wrong with that.

    Yes, the “new” Marini wears lace. Somebody wants everyone to know there’s a new sheriff in town. I suspect his German boss likes that lace, or I’ll bet you a strudel he wouldn’t be wearing it.

    Lace is a beautiful work of human hands.
    Fr. Z is right. Lace has it’s place.
    St. Ignatius would agree.
    Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!
    Jack in KC

  13. ALL: I think lace can be over done. For daily affairs I prefer something rather simple. For feasts something fancier. For big days, all the lace comes out.

    I think lace can be overdone and over used. We have to have contrasts between simple and solemn, ferial and festal.

    But… for the record… I didn’t have a cotta with me and had to borrow one at the church. That is what they had for me! But I would have put on a surplice with lace that day any way, for it would have been appropriate to the occasion.

  14. SF says:

    Ah, lace albs!
    If you go to Ars you can see the Saint Curé’s own alb, stitched by his mother.
    A most moving sight.

    Thanks for looking like a priest Father.


  15. TJM says:

    Father Z, you’re a poet and didn’t know it! Right on about lace. Tom

  16. Andrew says:

    Msgr Barreiro is a holy priest, and an absolute gentleman. When I was working in Rome in 2005, he was very kind to me, inviting me to Masses he was celebrating in the extraordinary form. (Also was with him there at the Una Voce Conference, as well, catching taxis together with others crisscrossing the city!)

    He once even invited me to his apartment for lunch one Sunday, after Mass.

    The good red table wine quickly goes to your head, making it easy for you to go into a foetal position!

    But being a visitor to the Eternal City from so far away, I remember with fondness the friendship of people like this.

    PS Nice picture of you two together Fr Z, in the lace. Gee you have a nice smile.

  17. RichR says:

    Neat! That’s the first time I’ve seen the Msgr biretta in actual use.

    What is it that FrZ said on a podcaZt?

    What’s the difference between a monsignor and a regular priest?

    Answer: Not much, it’s just the monsignors that don’t know that.

  18. What’s Peter Bogdanovich doing in a biretta?

  19. Limbo says:

    I found Msgr. Barreiro a most gracious and generous priest. I met him when we visited Ss. Trinita dei Pelegrini last Easter.
    There is a lot of lace about the place at Ss. Trinita’s. Delightful !

  20. Derik says:

    Cool. You are absolutely right fr. Z. Lace helps bringing panache to any celebration.

  21. Supertradmom says:

    Lace is so cool. Real man wear lace.

  22. anon says:

    I too am wondering what book you have there in your hand Father.

  23. dominic1962 says:

    Fr. Z is absolutely right about lace. It is kinda odd to pull it out for a ferial weekday or other fairly low-key events. In these cases, less is more. Thus, when a bigger feast comes about and you bring out the lace, it actually takes on a meaning and adds to the festive atmosphere of the celebration.

    As to those who have some sort of phobia of lace, to me it almost seems like they are overcompensating for something as in “I don’t want to be seen in lace because that is ‘effeminate’ and people might think I am too…mainly because I think that of myself already even if I don’t like to admit it…” I always find it interesting when people take something that someone else is wearing or doing as a criticism of themselves when no such thing is expressed or implied. They doth protest too much I think…

  24. Daniel Hill says:

    Lace is great in broque style churches, gothic is good in medieval churches, and very long flowing albs in romanesque churches.

    What frightens me is when I see a very lace alb under a very gothic chasuble (like that worn by Fr Z on his blog profile pic).

    Each in its place, and in continuity with the tradition.

    Also, one must remember that though lace was ‘in’ before VII, lace is a relatively new phenomenon looking at church history, and was popular due to its great expense as well as the workmanship.

    What I get annoyed at is one NEVER sees a Gothic rochet on a catholic bishop- they are always either lace or those dentist smock ‘floerntine’ things.

    The more Medieval, the better

  25. dominic1962 says:

    The fact that lace is fairly new is irrelevant unless we want to fall into the archaicism Pope Pius XII warned against. There is room for everything legitimate in the Roman Rite. Lace albs and appareled albs and anything of legitimate beauty and dignity has its place.

    As to rochets, I get the impression that half the time, bishops are just wearing an off the rack surplice because no one knows what a rochet is anymore.

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