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Thursday, December 07, 2006



I'm confident the the Pope will come with a document that will be appropriate and just. Any move towards more tridentine masses such be applauded. However, one should bear in mind what it will NOT do, namely:

- satisfy everyone on the conservative side, as even a complete and compulsory return to the Tridentine mass would not be enough - something that is clearly not going to happen in the first place. There will be vocal comment from disappointed people no matter what.

- prevent bishops from acting like Tod Brown. Do not kid yourself; even if a bishop would have no choice in the matter of the kind of mass being said, there will always be other ways for a Bishop to steer (or frustrate) parishes that want to do things differently. The only solution in those cases is not general action from Rome (as with this Motu Proprio) but specific (e.g. name a new nuntio in Iran, so that a certain see becomes free again.)

- prevent local priests from questionable practices such as the halloween Mass. Many people will want a more reverent mass, but if their local priest thinks differently, it needs to be dealt with by his Bishop, if he so chooses. If not, well, one can only pray....

Conclusion of this analysis is that it will still come down to the local levels: priest and bishop. Just as there are ways to hold very reverent and inspiring masses in the Novus Ordo (and Novus Ordo masses can be said in latin too, as done in my parish), there will always be ways to go in the other direction as well. Rome can steer things in the right direction, and this will certainly help, but I think a great many people expect more from this than it can deliver.


As much as I am hopeful I tend to wonder if Philippus is right. Tod Brown's will is fixed against tradition. If there is any loophole he can point to deny the folks of Orange County the Latin Mass, he'll take it without a care for who doesn't like it. His past behavior allows us to predict this. Ultimately, the Latin Mass represents a theology he doesn't hold. So, unless his hands are tied and he is forced to allow it, he will try and stop it.
Sadly, I acknowledge that as Bishop he has this authority even as I know he will miss use his authority. I do have faith that God will turn this around for a greater good and I hope to work with others to be a part of that. One older man said to me quite confidently that by the Bishop denying the mass to so many he is ensuring that 50 years from now it will be the only mass around.


A. I don't like calling it the "Traditional Latin Mass" because I think the way I celebrate the Novus Ordo Mass is traditional.

You're kidding, right? You celebrate a Mass that goes back an astounding 36 years and you think it's traditional? There is spent popcorn in local theaters that's older than your so-called "tradition."

I'm starting to suspect that the good Father is part of the problem, not the solution...


Fabulous post, Thomistic -
We can always count on you to cover the bases. Your time and effort is always greatly appreciated.
Thank you


If the rumor about priests being freed to offer the Tridentine Mass as a private Mass turns out to be true, it may actually be a wise move by Pope Benedict XVI. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but I believe the bishop need not know who is offering the Tridentine Mass as a private Mass. This may frustrate a hostile bishop's ability to identify Tridentine friendly priests. If the Tridentine Masses are included in the official schedule, a hostile bishop can make things difficult for the priest.

For a short time during the 1990s, I attended a private Tridentine Mass in Torrance, CA. An old, retired priest had been offered a spare room in the parish rectory. The retired priest said his private Mass (Tridentine Low Mass) on Sunday afternoon. The doors of the church were left open, and people who wandered in were free to attend. The pastor had no problem with it. After awhile, it attracted a small crowd. I heard about it through the grapevine, and drove 20-30 minutes from West Los Angeles to attend this Mass. Unfortunately, a well-meaning (but in this case imprudent) conservative Catholic newspaper publicized the Mass. The auxilary bishop for the area (Cardinal Mahony's diocese) turned up one day and the ax fell. I assume Cardinal Mahony leaned on the auxilary bishop, and the auxilary bishop leaned on the pastor. The pastor told the retired priest to leave the rectory (he needed the room back).

I have also seen what they can do to a bishop. The pastor of the parish which I attended while growing up was an auxilary bishop in Los Angeles. This bishop served under three cardinals of the Los Angeles Archdiocese (McIntyre, Manning, and Mahony). He is a good, faithful servant of the Church and a fine leader. I believe his parish was the last in the diocese to move the altar forward so the priest could celebrate Mass facing the people (he was probably forced to it). Until his retirement he offered the Novus Ordo in Latin on Sundays in the most reverent manner possible. He delivered good orthodox sermons. The church was not vandalized after Vatican II. In the 1990s, the church was exactly the same as it was when I received my first communion there in 1965. He did his best to reign in abuses by priests under his charge. This good bishop would tell a priest not to do something (which was an obvious abuse) and the priest would appeal to Cardinal Mahony who would tell the good bishop to leave the priest alone. Some of the liberal priests began to slander the good bishop by implying that he was ill. It was like something from the Stalinist Soviet Union. If you don't agree with our plans you must be to the mental hospital or gulag with you. When this bishop reached mandatory retirement age he was quickly cast aside by Mahony. If they can do things like this to a conservative bishop trying to celebrate the Novus Ordo reverently, imagine what they will do to a poor priest who wants to add the Tridentine Mass to the schedule. This is a difficult situation for the Holy Father.

Richard Gruen: The Tridentine Why Should It Be Up To A Bishop To ...

...have such power to stop it!!!!!! In Kenosha, Wisconsin a atholic Priest said; "I don't have to get any permission from any Bishop to say A Tridentine Mass."

A point to be made here is; why does our Pope leave it up to Bishops to allow the Tridentine Mass??? We all know that Bishop Brown is deadly against kneeling and latin Masses. So, do you honestly think he will not fight against seeing the Tridentine Masses in the county of Orange??? You bet he will do everything in his power to stop the Tridentine Masses. Tod Brown is so far to the left he would allow the evilnes of Barney characters to serve masses than to allow true honest spirituality in churches.
Read Father Martin's books on the evil from within the Catholic church. It will wake you up... maybe!!!!!

Some Day

I warn everyone of this.
There will be observation among the new and young priests who use the Tridentine rite when allowed.
They will not be promoted.
Don't ask me how I know.

A Simple Sinner

Some Day,

That is fine, we won't ask you, and we won't worry. Even if true, what is a priest to do? NOT celebrate a beautiful rite and spiritualy feed the faithful to ensure "promotion"?

Even if one concedes you have some sort of special insider information like you frequently claim you do, what is one to do? Good and holy priests do what is right because that is what good and holy priests do.

No fear little flock!

Some Day

Not that I don't like the TR.
Ofcourse I do. You lack the concept of beauty in your soul if you don't.
Just warning to be prudent.

A Simple Sinner

Of course the 800 pound gorilla sitting in the sanctuary wearing chancel slippers and a cope still is with us! What do I mean?

If today the Latin Mass is totally allowed by any priest wanting to offer it, or even MANDATED that it be used in parity to the new rite or exclusively, what does this do to the some 1M+ folks who are in extra-ecclesial, non-canonical situations.

More specifically, where does this leave folks like the SSPX who have taken it upon themselves to consecrate their own bishops and remove themselves from the jurisdiction of the local ordinary?

There is still much work to be done.

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