D. of Raleigh, Confirmations in the Extraordinary Form

On April 17, 2009, His Excellency Most Rev. Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Raleigh, NC confirmed 21 people in the Extraordinary Form at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Dunn, NC. 

This was his first ceremony in the Extraordinary Form.

Brick by brick!

A great shot redolent of the ancient Church… the bishop teaching from his chair.

I especially like this photo, with the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the background and the Crucifix.

Of course bishops could do this at any time even before Summorum Pontificum, but now these wonderful events can become even more regular.

Congratulations to the newly confirmed!

Spiritus Sanctus superveniat in vos, et virtus Altissimi custodiat vos a peccatis.

Kudos and a biretta tip   o{]:¬)    to In Caritate Non Ficta for the photos.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Brick by Brick, SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Thomas says:

    Father, did the bishop also say the Mass? Or did he just confirm?

    I attended an EF Confirmation at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes in Newton, MA. Auxiliary bishop Edyvean confirmed the kids, but the pastor said the Mass.

  2. Courageous on the part of His Excellency to celebrate his first EF rite on so important an occasion.

    Lots of folks might be quite understandably reluctant to do so.

    Thomas asks a good question, though. The bishop seems to be vested in stole and cope – is that normal for the confirmation rite?

    Does it offer a clue to the answer of Thomas’ question?

  3. NCTraddy says:

    I was not there, but due to the way Father and the Bishop are vested, it appears to me that it was just confirmations. Also, no altar cards are present.

    Besides, the Bishop hasn’t said a EF Mass…yet. :) We can hope… so if there was a Mass, my guess is that Father would have said it and the Bishop just do the confirmations.

    God Bless our Bishop. He is a good and holy man.

  4. Wow, that is a captivating photo of the Bishop seated on his chair. It is positively striking and leaves an impression of tradition and solemnity.


  5. FrGregACCA says:

    As I commented on Philip’s blog:

    “It is unfortunate that these young people, and so many others over the centuries, were not confirmed/chrismated and given first holy communion at the time of the their baptism. The Latin Rite of the Roman Church would do well, very well indeed, to return to the ancient order of initiation.”

    That said, please pray for Philip. His blog chronicles his experience with serious brain cancer, even while discerning a vocation to the priesthood.

  6. Rob says:

    This is a heavy brick, God bless the bishop.

  7. maureen says:

    I’m so glad to see the older form of confirmation return. To this day, I remember the slap on the face from my own confirmation. It broke my heart when my daughter was confirmed without it.

  8. TJM says:

    Wonderful news and Bishop Burbridge is leading by example! What a truly liberal spirit in contrast to certain bishops who won’t be named here who claim to be “liberal” except if it involves traditionally minded Catholics. What is so encouraging is that Bishop Burbridge is such a young man. The people of this diocese are very fortunate indeed. Tom

  9. Andrew, UK and sometimes Canada says:

    Is the bishop sitting on the chair or the altar-step? Don’t get me wrong, because I think the latter is even more evocative of the early church. I love EF photos with vested priests and servers crowded around the feet of bishops.

  10. Tom says:

    Hypothetical question.

    Overseas, there is an Ordinary who is “Committed to the liturgy of Paul VI.” Post S.P., what may he legitimately do to avoid confirming in the E.F.?

    1) Flat out say, no
    2) Authorize those families desiring this to go to a neighbouring diocese
    3) Require that this be done by the Extraordinary Minister (the pastor)
    4) Stall, delay.
    5) Say there isn’t enough interest
    6) Say that all in the parish must prefer this and request it.
    7) Say that those requesting it must be old enough to vote or collect Social Security
    8) Require a Latin Test and psychological screening.

  11. Daniel A. says:

    Tom, I don’t think the bishop could rightly do any of those. And if he did, your parish priest could still say the Mass (though he might not, fearing reprisal from the bishop). Of course, I’m not a priest or canon lawyer or anything, but from my impression of S.P., the bishop doesn’t really have to give his permission, if some people and some priest want the T.L.M.

  12. catholic says:

    Were the candidates for confirmation slapped as is traditional?

  13. Laura Lowder says:

    And I was there!

    It was a Confirmation liturgy only, not a full Mass. And he was sitting in the chair, not on a step.

    His remarks to the Confirmandi served as a keen challenge to all who were present – that we remember our calling and be prepared to face martyrdom for the Lord’s sake.

    There was also a Benediction and prayers for vocations after the actual Confirmation liturgy. Those photos are also on Philip’s blog.

    The bishop told me, afterwards, that it was the first time he had worked with Latin since his seminary days.

    NCTraddy is right: We ARE blessed in our bishop! and it was also wonderful, as we greeted him in the receiving line, afterward, how many people genuflected to him and kissed his ring. My knees won’t let me – I kissed his ring and apologized for not being able to genuflect, at which he laughed and gave me a warm hug. But I wanted to genuflect – I miss it – and while his office is worthy of the respect, Michael Burbidge is a man who well fills that office, also.

  14. Giovanni says:

    Am I seeing things or those this church also offer the NO Ad Orientem?

  15. Vernon says:

    In the traditional (EF) form of Confirmation it is done outside of Mass and is not followed by Mass but by Pontifical Benediction.

    Here on London, England we have had Confirmation in the traditional form for several years with each of the Auxiliary Bishopsof Westminster taking turns to administer the Sacrament. The Confirmandi come from parishes in several diocese all over southern England – there is no obligation to be confirmed by one\’s own diocesan bishop.

  16. Tom says:


    Closer to home, can you imagine Bsp. Trautperson being asked to confirm in the Extraordinary Form? It would be ineffable.

  17. Vernon says:

    As an incidental, had the bishop been going to follow the Confirmations with Mass, there would have been no altar cards as they are not used in EF Pontifical Masses.

  18. RosieC says:


    We do indeed have all Masses ad orientem at this parish.

  19. Tom says:

    A very refreshing contrast to the parish I visited while in Raleigh.


    Parishioner cremains along the walkway from the car park. Ick!

  20. Charlie says:

    I had really wanted to attend Bishop Burbidge’s confirmation in the EF, but I was already serving the confirmation Mass of Bishop Jugis the following day in Hamlet. Both Bishop Burbidge and Bishop Jugis are incredibly holy men with authentically pastoral hearts. They’re great for the Church in North Carolina.

  21. Ron says:

    The St. Francis Raleigh website was interesting, thanks. I am not a fan of niches for cremated remains on church property, though. It does not seem appropriate; I wonder if canon law speakes to it?

  22. Tom says:


    another example of something that was permitted but not encouraged becoming institutionalized

  23. ellen says:

    Also very nice to see the young lady being Confirmed dressed so modestly. My son, 17 years, is always asked to serve the Confirmation Mass and every year I am even more horrified by the outfits worn by some of the Confirmation candidates.

  24. Alina ofs says:

    I am very glad to see the Exraordernairy Form gain more and more ground. I am a convert Catholic with a Franciscan heart and I am very sure he’s singing his heart out in heaven because of this trend. A year ago I have discoverd TLM and now I have imported some uses in my parish (which only has “normal” masses) such as kneeling to receive H. Communion (on the tongue, of course) and reverance to the Tabernacle.

    After years of polarization, I am very glad the war is over and the posslibilities for traditional Catholics to attend good Masses is are increasing by the day.

    For in our H. Church there should (must) be room for everyone: both modern and traditional people!

  25. irishgirl says:

    What nice pictures!

    I’m thinking the same thing, Alina…there should be room for all Catholics!

  26. faithful one says:

    What a wonderful sight to behold! It makes me reaffirm my Catholic convictions…. traditional had it’s rightful place. Solemnity, devotion, grace filled moments which are priceless… God bless His Emminence and his Pastorial Ministry.

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