Archd. of Guadalajara – the ‘Traditionis custodes’ spiritual segregation continues

Perhaps this new will give rise to a new wave of spiritual Cristeros, namely, Custodes Traditionis.   Please, everyone, I implore you to consider doing this, joining this informal confraternity.

With this news, let us now invoke also Bl, Miguel Pro and the holy martyrs of Mexico to soften the hearts of those in Mexico who will implement and then enforce the cruel Traditionis custodes.

In Guadalajara, Mexico, there has been a bad, and confusing, development.  The Cardinal Archbishop of the place is slamming down on the Vetus Ordo in the wake of Traditionis Custodes, Francis’ Plessy v. Ferguson to Benedict’s Emancipation Proclamation.

Card. Robles Ortega issued a decree – you won’t find it on the dioceses’ truly cruddy website – for their implementation of TC.

NB: I was sent an English translation.  I didn’t find the original or this translation on the truly cruddy website.

Low points and oddities.

The Cardinal body slammed the faithful there who are desirous of Tradition, and he put fetters on the FSSP, too.  By the way – if the English is accurate – the document gets their name wrong, calling them the …

You know… I am not going to quote the translation on the weird variants in the text because I am not entirely sure that there are not canary traps either in the original (which we haven’t seen yet) or in the translation.  Let’s just say that one variant for naming the FSSP might be an ironic Freudian slip of some kind or it could be an accidental conflation of their name with the parish where they serve.

In any event, if it’s in the decree this is sloppy for something that will affect a lot of people lives in a seriously upsetting way.

The decree says that Masses at that quasi-parish, St. Peter in Chains, can continue but with readings only in the vernacular.

They can’t add Masses and, once COVID winds down, the number of Masses will be reviewed.

That’s little ironic, since officialdom wants the pandemic to last until entropy cools the planet or the Lord returns.

For the other places, daily Masses can continue at Our Lady of the Pillar, on weekdays only one Mass in the Chapel of Christ the King and on Sundays and Tuesdays at the parish of St. Francis Xavier of the Hills.  I don’t know the geography of that area.  One wonders how far O.L. Pillar and St. Francis Xavier might be from each other.

As Job cried, “Blessed be the name of the Lord!  That’s “¡Viva Cristo Rey!”, I guess.

As for inside the House of Formation of those in the FSSP, present in the Archdiocese of Guadalajara, Masses will be regulated, here it comes…. by the Congregation for Religious in Rome.  These are the same pastoral ambassadors of love who tenderly regulated the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, and who are sure to be putting forth soon an Instruction for the formation of all the new entrants into traditional communities now under their umbrella, rather than under the CDF’s.

That was one of the scariest results of TC, by the way.   That, and that regulation of liturgical issues will be under the Congregation for Divine Worship.

The decree further stipulates that people can’t go to the chapel of the Fraternity’s house.

Next, the quasi-parish of St. Peter in Chains is canonically suppressed.

¡Viva Cristo Rey!

Priests of the archdiocese must now be authorized on a case by case basis…. back to TC now from TJC.  Both older and newer priests must formally declare that, I will summarize these rather than quote because of possible canary traps in the text.   That’s how bad things are now, I think.

So… summarized, the priests who want to use the Vetus Ordo must formally declared that

a – they don’t deny the validity of the Novus Ordo and the Council and the Magisterium of the Supreme Pontiffs,

b- they recognize that the “only” expression of the Roman Rite is in the books promulgated by Paul VI and John Paul II (which seems false, because clearly the Vetus Ordo is the Roman Rite and always will be… it can’t be anything else, but I digress),

c – they are obliged to use the Novus Ordo and, if they don’t have explicit permission, they can’t use anything other than the 1962 Missale Romanum for anything, because – as the decree claims – all other provisions of Summorum were abrogated.   Not sure about that.

This loyalty oath business is deeply insulting and also – I suspect – indicative of a potential double standard of treatment of priests.

Will priests who are so poorly trained that they don’t know how to celebrate Mass with the 1962MR, who can say only the Novus Ordo, be required to take a loyalty oath about the Magisterium and that they will hereafter always stick to the rubrics of the Novus Ordo as they are written?

I’m thinking about the probability that in Mexico all the Novus Ordo Only priests are, even now, following the Novus Ordo rubrics precisely and not changing any texts.

Later, under the business section, in the part where he gives his little peroration he says –  again I don’t want to quote exactly because of the possibility of canary traps – that it is his, the Cardinal’s, duty to ask everyone commit to celebrating the liturgy with fidelity to the books.  He says that there is a healthy liturgical tradition there now and it is like a beautiful garden to be tended and not treated with laziness which degenerates into abuses.

Again, will all the Novus Ordo Only priests have to take a loyalty oath? 

Will they be disciplined if they stray from the rubrics and official text of the Novus Ordo Only books?   (And there’s the problem of the language “only” expression of the Roman Rite, because we don’t have a Latin document of TC so we can figure out the ambiguity between the possible meanings of the vernacular versions – German, Spanish, English, Italian.)

It might be understandable to imagine that this Cardinal might drop the weight of the world on a priest who continues without his extra-special motu-inappropriate super-double-top-secret permission to say what is not unjustly called “the Mass of ages”.

How bad will the double-standard be?

¡Viva Cristo Rey!

Here’s a helpful suggestion.

Perhaps the faithful of Guadalajara might start documenting with their phone cameras how the Novus Ordo is being celebrated in the diocese, and share those video and audio proofs on social media, so that we can all be edified and motivated to do our very best.

¡Hagan lío!

Mind you, I am working with a translation that was provided.   The official version will eventually be extruded into public view and we will have to double check this.   I don’t have a strong reason to think that the translation was off base.  However, little items in it seem just a tad bit … off.


The Spanish.

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  1. Fr. Reader says:

    I am not commenting about the letter of the Archbishop, that I have not read.

    One of the places in which I have seen the so called novus ordo celebrated with more dignity -on average- is Guadalajara. And I have seen many things.

    The event of the Pachamama monstrance is not the kind of things you see there on an average day. Unless things have changed radically in the last few years.

    On the other side, for many years (70s, 80s) there were some groups of sedevacantists (people with money and power). These groups, with the excuse of being anti-communists, for many years attacked -even violently, with physical violence-, anyone who would not think like them, also other relatively traditional groups. Some of them “went back” to Rome, some not. But life has not been pacific there at all, and some traditionalists there are not innocent victims.
    Even if the situation is not like this anymore, there is a very strong suspicion towards anything “traditionalist” there, even considering that within Mexico, Guadalajara is considered conservative.
    As someone who loves the Extraordinary Form (or whatever name is used now), I understand a strong reaction following Traditionis Custodes in that city.

    From O.L. Pillar to St. Francis Xavier, 30 minutes without much traffic.

  2. Fr. Reader says:
    The letter is here.

  3. Kate says:

    Never, ever could I take that loyalty oath. I would if I could, but I just couldn’t.

  4. RosaryRose says:

    Praying Father!

    I am trying to get my husband to come to the Traditional Mass with me (God bless our Bishop- he has allowed ours to continue!). I know the missal is intimidating. Is there a resource for an easier-to-follow along guide/missal? Perhaps the readers know of such.

    If there isn’t one, we need to make one. An easy guide, like training wheels until you can ride the big bike with its treasure of prayers and meditations. (My sister gave me my missal and it is full of sound Catholic teaching and prayers.).

    I think more people will seek the Traditional Mass. We cannot fight the increasing spiritual battle with a water pistol. We need God.

  5. JonPatrick says:

    I had to look up what a canary trap is. The sending of slightly different versions of a document to different people so that if it is leaked you know who leaked it. I guess I need to read more Tom Clancy.

  6. Fr. Kelly says:

    I have not seen the decree from Guadalajara, but if it reflects the motu proprio then b above would seem to correspond to the claim in n. 1 that the books approved by St. Paul VI and St. John Paul II according to the mind of the Second Vatican Council are the unique expression, etc …

    St. Paul VI approved the 1964/1965 Missale, the 1967 Missale, the 1969/70 Missale and the 1974 Missale. After his passing, St. John Paul II approved the 1984 Missale and the 2001 Missale. There are no versions approved by both for the obvious reason that John Paul II did not become Pope until after the passing of Pope Paul VI.

    In addition, the mind of the Second Vatican Council on the Liturgy (as opposed to the supposed spirit of the council expressed in several postconciliar efforts) is expressed in Sacrosanctum Concilium,

    This leaves us with only the 1964/65 Missale Romanum as the unique expression of the lex orandi of the Roman Rite.

    Are all the priests of the Archdiocese expected to offer Mass exclusively according to the 1964 Missale?

  7. donato2 says:

    The requirement of an affirmation that the new Mass is the sole expression of the Roman Rite appears to me to be a snare laid to entrap the FSSP. I am not a priest. If however I were one who says the traditional Latin Mass in Guadalajara, I don’t know how I could affirm the statement that the new Mass is the only expression of the Roman Rite. If that were the case, what is the traditional Latin Mass? Insofar as the statement is intelligible, its implication seems to be that the traditional Latin Mass is abrogated. But it is not abrogated, as it is still allowed. Nevertheless, I would be gravely concerned that by affirming that the new Mass is the sole expression of the Roman Rite I would be affirming that the traditional Latin Mass is no longer legitimate — and thus lending a hand in the digging of the grave for the traditional Latin Mass. On the other hand, if I refuse to affirm that the new Mass is the sole expression of the Roman Rite, I apparently would be immediately barred from saying the traditional Latin Mass. A lose-lose situation.

    It is deeply unjust to require anyone to affirm that the new Mass is the sole expression of the Roman Rite just because TC says so. Any pronouncement on the status of the ancient liturgy goes to a profound question to which there must be only one objectively true answer and, presently, the Church has given us two conflicting answers: that of TC and that of SP. This is not the sort of matter for which it can said that TC is binding solely because it is later in time or because it abrogates SP.

  8. GabrielSerafin says:

    After following this pope for 8 years and listening to his homilies in Spanish and reading his work in the light of Church teachings and the gospel, I am convinced that the Internet and all the talking heads are like a giant beast that twists and attribute false intentions to his words. After going through the filter of the Internet and the interpretations of the talking heads, the public gets a disfigured and false image of this pope. In a nutshell, it’s the devil who uses the proud to attack the shepherd in order to divide the flock.

  9. GabrielSerafin says:

    After following this pope for 8 years and listening to his homilies in Spanish and reading his work in the light of Church teachings and the gospel, I am convinced that the Internet and all the talking heads are like a giant beast that twists and attribute false intentions to his words. After going through the filter of the Internet and the interpretations of the talking heads, the public gets a disfigured and false image of this pope. In a nutshell, it’s the devil who uses the proud to attack the shepherd in order to divide the flock.

  10. Chrisc says:


    Does the pope bear any responsibility to use clear language to indicate his meaning? In other words, knowing a)that the devil wants to divide and b) Francis isn’t the most precise speaker then wouldn’t it be charitable to ask that the Pope at minimum refrain from giving interviews to Scalfari and airline pressers?

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  12. Ave Maria says:

    It is reported that the wonderful traditional Carmelite sisters in Fairfield and in Valpariso will be undergoing an apostolic visitation. The squeeze is coming from many directions.

  13. kurtmasur says:

    I would be curious how many TLM communities will soon be going underground, if they haven’t done so already, both in these USA and in other places like in Costa Rica.

  14. TRW says:

    Hmmm. That’s a strange theory, because the internet and the talking heads both existed during the pontificate of Benedict XVI. Although he had his share of critics and detractors, he wasn’t constantly misunderstood. Even those who disagreed about the content of what he said, didn’t disagree about WHAT he said. People can bend over backwards to make things seem 100% kosher and hunky-dory. The fact remains, the Holy Father sat idly by(no pun intended) while the Pachamama idol was worshiped/venerated in the Vatican Gardens. He later referred to it by name, thus clarifying that he knew exactly what it was. Without examining any other single word or act of his, that one event alone is outrageous and can’t be explained away. We didn’t hallucinate that. Yes, the evil one uses our pride to sow division, but that doesn’t mean that we have to look at the world through rose-colored glasses. It’s true that we should hold our tongues more readily. At times we may speak uncharitably, but that doesn’t render out utterances untrue.

  15. robtbrown says:

    The great irony is:

    There is no mandate in Sacrosanctum Concilium that mass be in the vernacular. And there is no mention at all of mass being said facing the people (versus populum).

    The Canon is the most important part of the mass. The 1970 Missal (Paul VI) states that the Eucharistic Prayer I is the Roman Canon. The means the other EPs, which are used most of the time, are not. Despite this literal fact, Traditionis Custodes insists that the 1970 Missal is the unique expression of the Roman Rite.

    Welcome to the Spadaro world of 2+2=5.

  16. Grabski says:

    they recognize that the “only” expression of the Roman Rite is in the books promulgated by Paul VI and John Paul II

    And yet Pope Benedict provided the Anglican Use books

    And somehow the Roman Rite has room for the Dominican and Mozarabic books

    Well, if it’s Paul VI’s books they in the short run there is the Tridentine Mass – in English. Promulgated c. 1966.

    Or the NO in Latin, with the Roman Canon and as few accretions as possible

    And as I’ve seen in NO parishes, the liturgy of the word delivered in a bi-lingual fashion ( and not just in Spanish)

  17. TonyO says:

    TC itself does not explicitly require priests to give an oath of loyalty to the Pope, Vatican II, or the new mass. It is the bishop’s own CHOICE to require such an oath.

    TC does require of the bishop that he make sure the priests and people who use the TLM do not reject the validity and legitimacy of Vatican II and the new mass. But TC cannot be read to even implicitly require ASSENT to the assertion that the new mass is the “only expression” of the lex credendi of the Latin Rite. Forcing priests to assent to it is WHOLLY a fabrication of the bishop.

    Because the assertion of that silly-sentence in TC is oxymoronic and muddled, a priest would have EVERY RIGHT to object to agreeing with it without clarifications. As a result, if I were a priest of FSSP in that diocese, I would do the following: find a priest in the diocese – not a member of FSSP – who is already saying the TLM (maybe privately), and who is probably willing to sign the oath if it is made clear, and ask him to FORMALLY request of the bishop a clarification of the meaning of the sentence so he can know what he is assenting to. Have him point out the ways in which it appears to be oxymoronic, and the ways in which it is ambiguous, and muddled, and that COULD be taken as actually heretical. Get the bishop to clarify the meaning HE gives to the sentence in TC. Continue the process of requiring clarification until the priest is confident what he is signing is NOT heretical or otherwise fundamentally wrong.

    Then pass that clarification out to all the priests of the diocese.

    Because the silly-sentence CANNOT be made to say anything clear without constraining and qualifying its meaning, once you do all that, you can force it to “mean” something actually decent and plausible. For instance, suppose the meaning were to be “clarified” to mean: the Pope intends that in time, the Novus Ordo mass, that mass of the missal of 1970 and its later iterations, will be the only approved and allowed mass of the Latin Rite. It would indeed be possible for a priest to sign this, because it ONLY speaks to the pope’s intent, not to what ACTUALLY IS or will be in reality. I agree that the pope intends this, but I do not agree this intent is a good thing. Nor do I agree that this intent could actually be fulfilled in reality.

    Even if this kind of effort were to fail, another option might work: For a priest to personally set forth a meaning of the silly-sentence in TC that he thinks is both reasonable as to what the pope was trying to say (but failed), and is not heretical, and to sign the oath in such a way as to expressly limit HIS OWN act of signing to that meaning he has for it. This might, (morally speaking) be justifiable (as a kind of broad mental reservation) because the silly-sentence is, in and of itself, senseless, and to affirm it IN ANY SENSE requires re-stating it to have some actual meaning that a person COULD affirm. If the bishop won’t do that, the priest must do it for himself. (I would be delighted if anyone could comment on this in the light of canon law.)

    I would NOT (directly) raise the issue of the silly-sentence in TC being oxymoronic not ONLY because it also approves (in a limiting way) the TLM, it also fails to abrogate the use of the Dominican Use and other uses of immemorial custom. (We don’t want to alert the authorities that TC’s attempt to “abrogate” failed.) But I would keep that fact in mind for a priest drafting his own “meaning” of the silly-sentence that he (might) be able to affirm. Since TC does not actually abrogate these other masses, they too remain masses of the Latin Rite, and so the meaning of the silly-sentence MUST be taken with qualifiers that constrict it to mean something that leaves them intact. It is not extraordinarily difficult to construct a non-idiotic meaning to replace the silly-sentence’s apparent meaning, to extend also to the TLM what it leaves open for the other immemorial Uses in the Latin Rite – since it is, also, one of the immemorial uses of the Latin Rite.

    We must be wily as serpents, when we must follow bad laws.

  18. Fr. Kelly says:

    Traditionis Custodes insists that the 1970 Missal is the unique expression of the Roman Rite.

    I respectfully submit that TC actually does not say that. That may be the intention of those responsible for that tortured sentence, but a document is made up of words and it first of all means what the words say.

    And the 1970 Missal, although it was authorized by St. Paul VI is certainly not according to the mind of the Second Vatican Council and so cannot be what those words refer to.

  19. robtbrown says:

    Fr Kelly,

    I understand and to a certain extent agree with your comment.

    For some time, however, I have told people that my liturgical opinions are to be found in Sacrosanctum Concilium simply because the document has texts that can be used to justify every liturgical position from that of the SSPX to celebrants in clown suits and balloons on the altar.

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  21. Fr. Reader says:

    “FORMALLY request of the bishop a clarification of the meaning of the sentence so he can know what he is assenting to… oxymoron.. ambiguous, and muddled… heretical.”
    Sorry, with due respect, this sounds to me very American. I don’t think in México they care much about these things you write here.

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