If any of you out there have the ear of bishop or of the bishop, please put this in front of his eyes.

At National Catholic Register, the well-know and highly respected Msgr. Charles Pope issues a cri de coeur about Traditionis.  The final part.


Now we must look to our bishops and beseech them to exhibit the pastoral solicitude this document seems to lack. They have been given a hard and awkward task. Be careful to pray for them, and try not to embitter them with predictions or presumptions of bad treatment. Many of them have already shown the pastoral sense to avoid the rash and “immediate” implementation of this motu proprio.

Dear bishops, as a pastor of souls, I ask you for a gentle and kind interpretation of it. Traditional Catholics are among the sheep of your flock, and they need a shepherd’s care. Even if the document suggests that they be shuffled off to the margins, I beg you not to do it. This is a vibrant and growing section of the flock. Many young families and young adults, as well as young priests and older folks are depending on you to do what is truly pastoral.

If greater unity is needed, teach us what this means, but please, do not drive us to the margins to live in rejection. Some of us are ornery but most of us are just trying to be good, decent Catholics and stay close to the heart of the Church. Keep us close to you and find room for us in your hearts.

Dear Holy Father, I beg you to reconsider what you have written and to hear the unnecessary pain you have caused. You rightly desire unity in the Church, but I fear that, by this action, you may end up causing far more serious division.

Since my opinion means nothing, I ask you to consider the words of the great rabbi Gamaliel, who said in the Acts of the Apostles (5:38-39):

“So in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone. Let them go! For if their purpose or endeavor is of human origin, it will fail. But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop them. You may even find yourselves fighting against God.”


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Cri de Coeur, Traditionis custodes. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Not says:

    Thank You Father Z.,

    Since Pope Francis’s publication of this document we have experienced, outrage, studious research and other emotions. You are correct Father with your article, we must pray and think before we publicly react especially to our Bishops.

  2. Christ_opher1 says:

    I do not know if this is of interest to anyone but every time I say something bad about those in the high places of the church I say a hail mary for them.

  3. You Can Call Me Betty says:

    I find it interesting that throughout this the TLM followers (it seems to me) are presented as somehow weaker than the average Catholic, more at risk perhaps to be hurt by the motu proprio, and deserving of extra indulgence, in the way you might protect a young child. That seems very much the tone of the article referenced here.

    I find this odd, since those I have known who are attracted to TLM are among the strongest Catholics I have ever met. Indeed, it is this strength, expressed in a sound commitment to Catholic doctrine and an explicit attempt to pass this on to their children, that I think is what the Vatican may be trying to quash–since it most certainly has the potential to become stronger and more popular than the weaker tea offered in most parishes, were more people to know about it.

    What is the pastoral concern here? That traditional Catholics will break away formally from the Church if this is enforced as written? That seems … unlikely. More likely, I think, is that by drawing such a firm line in the sand, the inadequacies of the NO will be laid bare for all to see.

    And I say that as someone who does not attend Latin Mass.

  4. Vir Qui Timet Dominum says:

    It’s always good to hear some sanity from the Pope!

  5. Percusio says:

    Supposedly this motu proprio is a result from the evaluations which the Holy Father received from the bishops themselves. If this is true, it would seem quite a slap in the face if the bishops turned against the Holy Father. Perhaps the questionnaires sent regarding the Latin Mass was only to a specific location. If more universal it would be difficult to imagine the bishops making a 180. Though the US bishops seem taken aback by the motu proprio also, so perhaps they were not given the questionnaire. Seems strange to make a universal motu proprio based on a localized area. Perhaps in fact it is a way of getting the results you want.

  6. FrankWalshingham says:

    Msgr. Pope is a good, holy and orthodox pastor. Love to visit his home parish of Holy Comforter – St. Cyprian Catholic Church whenever by travels take me in to DC!

  7. NEIL ADDISON says:

    Thinking about the harshness of Pope Francis over the TLM and it seems to me that his age has a lot to do with it.

    To a person of his generation Vatican 2 and the creation of the 1972 Missal were defining religious events but for anyone under the age of 60 Vatican 2 and the ‘New Mass’ are not issues to either accept or reject they simply exist and have always existed

    The suggestion by Pope Francis that people like me who attend the TLM should be questioned about our acceptance of V2 is both unnecessary and offensive. Vatican 2 wasn’t Nicea or Chalcedon it didn’t define what is the faith and therefore there is nothing wrong with holding the view that the Church made mistakes in V2. By insisting on accepting V2 Pope Francis is simply reviving an argument that might have made sense in his youth but is pointless today

  8. ex seaxe says:

    These sloppy headlines using ‘Latin Mass’ as shorthand for ‘the 1962 editio typica‘ make me quite angry. Latin is the language in which the Roman Rite is written, and it is the language of the chant which Vatican II, and GIRM (IGMR) lay down as the primary music of our liturgy. This is true of the 2002 editio typica just as much as any predecessor.
    Associating “Latin” with “rebellion” has fuelled much of the rot in our liturgy which has gone on to infect the public with heresy. [I am NOT attributing this confusion to Msgr. Pope]

  9. Philliesgirl says:

    Percusio I fear there is another explanation. The questionnaire revealed the massive growth and strength of the TLM among Catholics especially the young. This was intolerable, hence the nuclear option. The Lord is giving us a hard test but He will also give us the grace to survive it. Prayer and penance is the only way. We will always have the Rosary and the whole army of the Angels and Saints are rooting for us. Long Live Christ the King.

  10. Johann says:

    God bless Monsignor Pope. He is a voice of reason in a very emotional time for the faithful.

  11. Johann says:

    God bless Monsignor Pope. He is a voice of reason in a very emotional time for the faithful.

  12. BrianOfAntioch says:

    Pope Francis wrote Traditionis as a professional courtesy to brazen pro-abortion politicians who would not know when to defiantly walk up and receive Holy Eucharist during the TLM.

    I find it disturbing how much animosity is shown to Catholics who wish to follow their own faith.

Comments are closed.