A reader alerted me – mired as I was in the midst of computer battles – about a survey recently conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate of Jesuit run Georgetown University about the availability of the older, Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.
The survey found that those Catholics in the United States having any opinion at all on the topic favor the availability of the TLM by a two to one margin, with the majority having no opinion.
When asked “Do you favor as an alternative to the newer Mass, bringing back the older Latin Tridentine Mass for those who would prefer this option?”
25% favor the option, 12% oppose it, and 63% have no opinion.
Support for the extraordinary form option is higher among older Catholics, those who attend Mass weekly, political independents, and those with graduate degrees.
A similar survey conducted in 1985 found that Catholics favored the option by a 40%-35%
What is interesting here is that of those who have an opinion, the majority favor the availability of the TLM by 2-1. That doesn’t mean they would go to it, but they favor the option.
What is also to note here is that we have the opportunity to shape the opinion of those who have no opinion.
Another point, let’s just consider demographics.
Were we to consider the number of Catholics in the USA, …
Let’s guestimate the Catholic population of the USA at about 65,000,000 by the research of that same institute that did the survey.
Let’s say about half of those are old enough to have an opinion that matters, say… 32.500,000 people.
Let’s say about 25% of that 32.5 million would favor the option of having the TLM available, say… 8,125,000.
The Cara Poll suggests that USA Mass more or less weekly Mass attendance is 36%.
Watch how the liberals will try to spin this.
They will say that a small minority want the option of a TLM made available.
In fact, of those who have an opinion, the majority favor the availability of the TLM by 2 to 1.
Remember… higher among those who go to Mass regularly, who have more education and who are political independents.
Again, we have the opportunity to shape the opinion of those who have no opinion.
I will direct you once again to my trusty old Rules of Engagement.
Remember: YOUR ARE KEY PLAYERS with people who don’t have an opinion or who are shaping their opinion about whether or not there should be a TLM even available, or are wondering about whether they would like to give it a try.
They will form impressions of the people involved in the whole TLM thing. I can pretty much guarantee that if you are sour jerks, argumentative, hyper-critical, and frowning at newcomers who don’t fit your dress code or who don’t know what to do, this group will be lost.
Instead… if they see your joy, get a sense of welcome, have some resources to help them through their first experiences, it is likely… especially if they are regular Mass goers, are well-educated and independent thinkers, they will probably think that it is a good idea at least to have the option.
Think about this.
Think about this.
What can you do, concretely, to be a good opinion shaper, a good example and influence in the matter of availability.