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Latin Mass spreading elsewhere, why not in Dallas? July 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Latin Mass, North Deanery.
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Since I was in Salina, KS, for the weekend, I had to find a place to celebrate Mass on Sunday.  My beautiful, charming, and ever so capable wife helped me out, and gave me three choices, the cathedral or one of two churches.  The cathedral of the Salina diocese, which was built in 1951, did not conform to my image of a beautiful Catholic Church, but since it was reasonably easy to find (it was right next to the mortuary where my aunt’s funeral was held), I decided that would be it.  The outside was all grey concrete and modernist style, proving that modernism was very much alive and well in the Church well before Vatican II, the Cathedral having been built in 1951.  Inside, it was a little better, but was far too modernist for me.

But that’s not the important part  🙂  The important part is that while searching for churches, my wife found a tidbit from the diocesan newsletter, stating that three priests of the Salina diocese have been trained to celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and that the diocese was in need of vestments to allow for this celebration.  Isn’t that wonderful?  Little ol’ podunk Salina will soon have up to three parishes celebrating the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, while Dallas has one.  And that parish is not diocesan, it is run by a religious order, and the travails experienced by this small parish, just in obtaining permission to have their own facility, were rather hair raising. 

It’s rather amazing to me that a diocese like Salina can have three priests who will celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, whereas Dallas has none, or two if you want to count the FSSP priests.  Dallas is a diocese of from 900,000 to 1.2 million Catholics, depending on whose statistics you want to accept, whereas Salina is a diocese of about 80,000.  None of this is to say I only accept the EF Mass – I like it, but I’m not someone who is radically against vernacular Mass.  But the rub is this: I know even with Mater Dei and another parish offering Novus Ordo Latin Mass, there are numerous people who cannot celebrate Latin Mass when they would like to.  That is to say, there is a demand that is not being met.  I worked to try to get a Latin Mass, either EF or Novus Ordo, just one weekday Mass per week, added in the North Dallas/Plano/McKinney area, and met with no success, in spite of the fact that we found strong interest from dozens of families representing several hundred people. 

Why was there no success?  A number of priests were spoken with at the time, and while some expressed an interest in adding a single Mass in Latin once per week, they did not feel they were able to do so, in spite of the provisions of Summorum Pontificum which state that any priest can celebrate an EF Mass if there is a request from the people to do so, and Latin Novus Ordo Mass has always been permitted by the Church (since Vatican II).   There was a general concern that the Bishop would be less than pleased should a diocesan priest offer a Latin Mass (I have this in writing from a number of priests), and there were statements from the diocese that any priest offering such a Mass obviously has too much time on his hands and could spend that time better by celebrating vernacular Mass in one of the least desirable parishes in the diocese (also in writing).   The last bit was not stated directly, but only implied by the listing of some of the potential “aid assignments” a priest could expect.  

This is all very hard to believe, that a bishop would issue instructions which contradict the expressed intent of the Pope.  I sent a letter to the vicar general, now Bishop Doug Deshotel, many months ago asking whether a Latin Mass could be added in the south Collin County/north Dallas county part of the diocese (the north deanery), and received a letter acknowledging my request, and since then, nothing.  So, I am left to conclude that either a very large number of priests in the diocese are badly misinformed or are using the same excuse as cover, or that the bishop really has made it known that he will find any priests offering additional Latin Mass in the area quite displeasing.  Given that I know some of the priests involved very well, and that their desire to celebrate Latin Mass is I believe quite genuine, it is difficult not to conclude the latter. 

I don’t know why Bishop Farrell would have an opposition to Latin.  Perhaps he does feel that his priests are already overburdened, but we were talking about only one weekday Mass in Latin per week, which one would think could be accomodated.  Since we appear to have hit an impasse, the question is, what now?  Perhaps Una Voce – Dallas is the appropriate next step.  Una Voce is a group dedicated to seeing that both Ecclesia Dei and Summorum Pontificum are faithfully implemented.  They have formed chapters in many locations, and generally lobby the various dioceses for “permission” to have more Latin Mass celebrated.  While Una Voce is normally associated with EF Mass, I don’t think it would be a problem to lobby for Novus Ordo Latin Mass.  There is no chapter of Una Voce in Dallas.  If I can find sufficient interest, I may try to start one up.  Does anyone have any familiarity with Una Voce?  I’d like very much to get some knowledge I can in this matter.

UPDATE:  Michael Voris and I WERE separated at birth. He weighs in on Latin Mass. BTW, I’m the good looking twin. 

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What is it about St. Louis? July 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, General Catholic, scandals.
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One of my favorite, prickly but very, well, orthodox for lack of a better word, bishops is Archbishop Raymond Burke, the current head of the Apostolic Signatura.  When he was archbishop of St. Louis, MO, he stated during the run up to the 2004 presidential election that pro-abort politicians should not receive Communion, and stated specifically that he would deny Communion to then candidate John F. Kerry.  St. Louis has a new archbishop, Robert J. Carlson, and he stated something rather similar recently.  In an editorial for the St. Louis Review, the newspaper of the St. Louis archdiocese, Archbishop Carlson stated (reported on Fr. Z):

Since the first century, the Church has addressed the moral evil of abortion and the killing of a defenseless baby in the womb. People who are casual about the sin of abortion and who choose to view it as a political issue rather than the serious moral issue that it is are guilty of violating the Fifth CommandmentYou cannot be “pro-choice” (pro-abortion) and remain a Catholic in good standing. That’s why the Church asks those who maintain this position not to receive holy Communion. We are not being mean or judgmental, we are simply acknowledging the fact that such a stance is objectively and seriously sinful and is radically inconsistent with the Christian way of life.

This is the key argument to make.  It is not that the Church is trying to “punish” those that disagree with her – it is trying to save the immortal souls of those who refuse a core Truth revealed by Christ.  Promoting abortion is a mortal sin.  Those in mortal sin can not recieve Communion.  If they do, they are “eating and drinking comdemnation on themselves” (1 COR 11:29) and are committing an even graver sin, a sin against Christ’s Sacrifice.  I have heard it described that they are re-crucifying Christ.  Fundamentally, disallowing the receipt of Communion to those who are in a state of mortal sin is a supreme act of charity, it is not something politically motivated, as ‘progressives’ often try to argue. 

Archbishop Carlson goes on to cite Guadium et Spes No. 51.3 which declares abortion to be an “abominable crime.”  Euthanasia is treated the same way.  All in all, it’s an extremely cogent and persuasive argument for the Catholic consistent life ethic and the stance against abortion.  Those who manifestly persist in any public, grave sin (such as if I were outed for being an out and proud swinger), cannot receive Communion.  Those who do put their souls in grave jeopardy and cause severe scandal in the Church, possibly leading others into grave sin, which only compounds their offense.  Pray for the conversion of those many unrepentant pro-abort Catholics – they are in dire need of prayers.

A brief word of thanks July 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin.
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Thanks to all who prayed for my aunt and my family.  I received word from a number of people about their prayers and it is very, very appreciated. 

May God bless you all.

Professor fired for teaching Catholic doctrine July 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in foolishness, General Catholic, scandals, Society.
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Many may have already read about this, but a few days ago Professor Kenneth Howell was fired from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Religion for teaching his students what Catholic doctrine plainly states – homosexuality is intrinsically disordered.   The professor committed the cardinal sin in academia (and ‘progressive’ catholyc) circles of stating that he agreed with the Church’s doctrine on homosexuality.  A student complained that this was hate speech, and so he was fired.  First of all, this concept of “hate speech” is fundamentally incompatible with a society that allegedly provides for freedom of speech.  Our college campuses have beocome some of the most intolerant, totalitarian places on the planet.  One can easily be fired, dismissed as a student, and/or completely ostracized for making a statement that runs counter to the stifling, omnipresent culture of lockstep leftist political groupthink that dominates on virtually every college campus in the country.   These places describe themselves as bastions of free thinking, which is an utter laugh – as David Horowitz constantly documents, colleges today are nothing more than mouthpiece organs for the disaffected far left, at least in terms of the political speech they will “tolerate”.  What few countering opinions there are do not change the Orwellian environment, as this most recent episode demonstrates.

What is more disturbing, is the seeming unwillingness of either the local Newman Center, the diocese, or the bishop, to defend this man or work with him to continue to provide instruction in the Catholic Faith at a collegiate level.   So now, one can be assured that either the students at the University of Illinois will either have no courses on the Catholic Faith available, or that they will be taught be individuals who understand that to represent Catholic doctrine faithfully is to end one’s career.  I am certain there are many codiciles or caveats that can be used to explain away the lack of support by the Newman center or diocese, but it looks rather shabby when the fired professor is having to rely on a largely protestant organization in his suit against the University of Illinois.  This is the lack of leadership of which I have recently spoken. 

This professor has in reality been given a great grace by being made a modern day martyr and suffering a significant loss for his defense of the Faith.  I am certain that our Heavenly Father will provide for him.  I am more concerned about the Church.  I am concerned that, due to sometimes tepid leadership, the Catholic Church is becoming more and more marginalized in the public sphere.  There are many who would like to insist that all public professions of Faith be outlawed or made so painful that they are virtually banished.  Thus, the religion of atheistic, secular progressivism (heretofore known as communism) could continue its ‘march through the institutions’ unchallenged.   While Catholics are called to stand apart from the world, we are also called to challenge the world to change, to evangelize for the Faith, to spread the Good News of Christ’s Ressurection and all the Truth of the Faith.  The ability to do this is being steadily eroded in western society, and this is not accidental.  It is not accidental that widespread sexual abuse by teachers is virtually ignored, while the Church is excoriated constantly for the failings of individuals.  It is not accidental that militant atheists are given the very utmost assurances of freedom of thought and speech, while those few defenders of the Faith are turned into martyrs.  While it has always been thus, the Church has always been there to support those defenders of the Faith.  But increasingly, it seems that much of the leadership in the Church, in particular in North America and Europe, is concerned primarily about not making waves, making sure there aren’t any negative headlines about THEM, and allowing certain folks to dangle in the wind if necessary for the “greater good.”  It appears one can, after all, be too Catholic.

And so for the sake of expediency, or popularity, or congeniality with those elites various bishops enjoy dining and socializing with, the ability of the Church to boldly proclaim the Truth Christ has revealed through it is steadily diminshed.  This might work to the worldly advantage of the leadership for a while, but there will come a day when they find their influence completely atrophied, and they will ask “how did this come to pass?”  It comes to pass one small situation at a time.

Sorrow and Joy – Anglicans continue suicidal plunge July 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Ecumenism, General Catholic.
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Yesterday, the Anglican Church rejected a “compromise” proposed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, and continued headlong down the path of rejecting Christian Tradition and succumbing to the siren song of the world.  The issue is the ordination of women’s bishops, which has been coming for some time.  Archbishop Williams had tried to float the idea of a “two-tier” church, in which more traditional Anglicans would always report to a male bishop, and more ‘progressive’ could report to either male or female.  This was unworkable, because of issues of complexity and the not insignificant fact that the traditionals did not believe that this separation would long remain operative.  It was at best a means to keep the traditionalists in the fold a little longer. 

And so the dissolution begins.  Dozens of Anglican clergy in England are making plans to accept the provision of the Ordinariate so astutely put together by Pope Benedict XVI, and much advance work has already been completed.  70 clergy met with the Catholic Bishop of Nottingham to discuss entering the Church.  As it becomes increasingly clear that the Anglican Church is fully protestant, and as such, is fully engaged with the slow dissolution of that group of sects that has accelerated in recent years, a sizable portion of the Anglican church will have to leave – not all will become Catholic, however.  Some will form some kind of traditionalist Anglican sect, and others may opt for Orthodoxy (which may eventually lead to Rome, anyway).  We should pray for those who swim the Tiber, that the Holy Spirit may open their eyes to the wondrous vista about to appear before them and be receptive to that Fullness of Truth only available in the Church.  We should pray for those remaining in anglicanism that they may realize that what they are coming to profess is no longer a fully Christian doctrine, but is increasingly a body that seeks accomodation with the world, the flesh, and the devil.  This is the sorrowful part to me, to see the coming dissolution of a church of which I was once a part.  There is joy in knowing that, though they may suffer, many will come to a fuller knowledge of Christ and be in union with the Church he established.  I pray for those caught in between, those who cannot remain anglican but cannot yet countenance joining the One, True Church, including my parents’ church in Plano – theirs is a rocky path.  I pray that all will one day be reunited in the Church Christ founded when he gave the keys of the Kingdom to Peter.