‘Business as usual’ for Traditional Latin Mass goers

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A priest who offers the traditional Latin Mass is urging his parishioners to pray for the New Zealand bishops as they prayerfully discern “the great benefit to Aotearoa of our Latin Mass communities”.

“We cannot minimise the attack that this document represents on what we love most in this life; or — better to say — something we hold most dear that we long to give to someone we love most.

“But neither can we permit anxiety, bitterness, or resentment to enter in and poison the interior life. Remain at peace and with a loving confidence in Christ our King, who may permit us to suffer, but will never abandon us.”

Writing in his parish newsletter Fr Antony Sumich, FSSP (pictured) says it is important to “remember that our duty today is the same as it was yesterday: to watch and to pray, to fast and to give alms, to conform ourselves more and more, not to the world, but the heart of our beloved Redeemer”.

As a result of Francis’ Traditionis Custodes, those already offering the Tridentine Mass must ask the diocesan bishop permission to continue.

According to the Latin Mass directory, the Tridentine Mass is offered at twelve venues throughout the week, not always on a Sunday.

The Traditional Latin Mass is also live-streamed.

The New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference, National Communications Office says it has received two replies seeking clarification from New Zealand bishops.

Cardinal Dew said that of late there have been no Tridentine Masses celebrated in the Archdiocese mostly because the Archdiocese does not have priests who are available and who are able to celebrate that Mass.

Bishop Dooley said that the Dunedin diocese has one Latin Mass celebrated regularly on a Sunday morning in the Cathedral chapel and he will approve a request to continue its celebration.

In his 25 July Newsletter Sumich reports that after a meeting with Bishop Dunn it is “business as usual” in the Auckland diocese.

Sumich writes that Bishop Dunn “was very happy with the Latin Mass Chaplaincy and the work of the FSSP.

“His belief is that the relationship between the Diocese and the FSSP will not be affected by this Motu Proprio, as the articles have very little to do with us (FSSP) or our mission”

Sumich reports that Traditionis Custodes came as a “great surprise” to Bishop Dunn who as yet has not spoken with the diocese’s Canon Lawyer as to the meaning of a ‘few points’.

Calling Traditionis Custodes a ‘restrictive decree’ Sumich believes that while it is currently business as usual he personally think the parish has not heard the last of the matter.

Internationally ripples are spreading the world following the pope’s motu proprio restricting the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass.

On July 19, Washington DC cardinal, Wilton Gregory wrote to his priests saying he would prayerfully reflect on Traditionis Custodes to ensure he fully understood the Holy Father’s intentions and how they might be realised.

He added that priests using the traditional liturgy had permission to continue using it.

However, on Thursday, reports began circulating that Gregory has withdrawn permission for a solemn pontifical Mass scheduled for next month’s Feast of the Assumption.

The solemn pontifical Mass was scheduled for the vigil of the Solemnity of the Assumption and was to take place at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

In the letter to the world’s bishops accompanying the motu proprio, Francis says his motivations are the unity of the Church saying that concessions granted by his predecessors relating to using the 1962 Roman Missal were “motivated by the desire to foster the healing of the schism with the movement of Mons Lefebvre” and “the ecclesial intention of restoring the unity of the Church.”

Despite these aims, the concessions were “exploited to widen the gaps, reinforce the divergences and encourage disagreements that injure the church, block her path and expose her to the peril of division,” he explained.


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