The Society of St. Hugh of Cluny is located in the Diocese of Bridgeport. Bishop Frank Caggiano of Bridgeport has issued his decree concerning the implementation of Franci’s Plessy v. Ferguson legacy document, Traditionis custodes.
Become a Custos Traditionis – HERE
Bp. Caggiano’s document is HERE. The necessity of such a decree in the first place is a little foggy for me. However, given the present environment, this isn’t horrible. Remember that a while ago, Bp. Caggiano did a radio interview or a podcast of some sort in which he said he was going to think about this, and he made some decent observations. It seems he followed through.
In summary, in Bridgeport, Caggiano has wisely made use of can. 87 to dispense from certain restrictive articles in the cruel TC, allowing parishes which already have their activities going to keep going under his “direct supervision”.
He provides for the case that the pastor no longer wishes to continue such Masses…. quod Deus avertat.
Priests who want to celebrate the Vetus Ordo muest seek the faculty from him and the priest must be idoneus. This was a big deal at the time of Summorum Pontificum when some bishops claimed that priests had to be as fluent in Latin as little Cicero’s tutor. Idoneus – roughtly “qualified, suited to” – means that the priest must
- Not be impeded by Canon Law;
- Possess and evidence a basic knowledge of the Latin language so as to pronounce words correctly while understanding their meaning;
- Demonstrate facility and competency in the celebration of the usus antiquor of the Mass according to the rubrical directives.
All in all reasonable, and in keeping with what his predecessor, the late canonist and Cardinal Egan, said about idoneus and Latin.
Caggiano describes the faculty to use the 1962 books, which includes the Breviary, the forms for the Sacrament of Penance, public Masses at approved times, and – this is the flaw, I think – private Mass.
Good canonists maintain that TC did not deal with private Masses and I agree. Hence, this should have been left out.
The newly ordained have to ask the bishop for faculties and then he will consult Rome. Keep in mind that TC says “consult”, not “ask permission from Rome to give the faculty”. The bishop can send a postcard from his vacation in Atlantic City with the note that this is a consultation and then go ahead and give the faculty.
It seems to me that the point of that “consultation” business is a sneaky tactic to keep track of the growth of the TLM among younger clergy. I think young priests should go ahead and learn the TLM anyway. There is nothing against that and no one can stop them. Nor should they try. It would be foolish.
He imposes the idoneus qualification also on the newly ordained deacons. I hope there are some.
A quibble I have with the document is that the bishop, throughout, speaks of himself in the first person rather than saying “the diocesan bishop”. After all, diocesan bishops come and go.
AS. WE. ALL. KNOW. TOO. WELL.
There are some other odds and ends in the decree. All in all, compared to what we have seen in many other places, the decisions were pretty broad and fairly kind and reasonable in an environment of spiritual stinginess evinced by diocesan bishops.