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DOES THE LATIN MASS ENCOURAGE CULTISM, SEXISM AND CLERICALISM?

The Latin Mass becomes a cult of toxic tradition

by Zita Ballinger Fletcher NCR

One culture within the Catholic Church needing major reform is that surrounding the practice of the Latin Mass.

In a previous era, the Latin Mass was merely a uniform and standard way of celebrating the liturgy in the United States. In the wake of much needed reforms instituted by the Second Vatican Council, the Latin Mass has become a rallying point for change-resistant sects within the church.

The ultra-conservatism practiced by these Latin Mass groups is radical and narrow-minded. They utilize the Latin Mass structure to wield control over believers — particularly women, who are reduced to a state of discriminatory subjugation in Latin rites.

The stubbornly resistant, anti-modern practices of these Latin Mass adherents border on cultism.


The Latin Mass fosters clericalist structures in the church. The liturgy — spoken in an ancient language no longer in modern vernacular usage — places all power in the hands of the priest. The priest keeps his back turned to the people for most of the ceremony. Aside from making occasional responses, the congregation plays no active part in worship. All people inside the church are expected to kneel on cue at various points. The priest is at the center of the spectacle. He is separated from the people he is supposed to serve by an altar rail — a barrier that gives him privileges. To receive the Eucharist, people must kneel at his feet. 

Instead of a unifying form of worship, the Latin Mass has become an instrument of oppression and a gathering point for Catholic fundamentalists. 

Meanwhile, the Latin tradition oppresses women. Women are expected — indeed, in some cases commanded — to wear skirts instead of trousers, cover themselves with long clothing and wear veils over their heads. No such rules exist for the men. It is discrimination, and therefore the Latin Mass actively endorses sexism. Instead of a unifying form of worship, the Latin Mass has become an instrument of oppression and a gathering point for Catholic fundamentalists.
 
In most cases, it is useless to politely disagree with people in the Latin Mass sect. Their attitude creates blindness — not only to true faith, but to their own behavior. They treat others with pride and animosity, but their conscience fails to kick in because they are convinced their way is holy and other ways are not.

Anyone who may accuse me of not knowing what I’m talking about — a favorite indictment of the Latin Mass ideologues — would be wrong. My opinion is based on facts and personal experiences.

Related: Your thoughts on a traditional Mass, presidential elections, humility and more

I grew up in a household of challenged but growing faith, which grew stronger over time. My parents were divorced. My mother was a fallen-away Catholic who hadn’t been to church in over 30 years. In the branches of my family tree were relatives who might best be described as atheists, and others of a more traditional Christian type. My mother decided to return to the Catholic Church when I was young. From an early age, I believed in Christ and considered myself a Catholic — other relatives tried in vain to convert me to atheism while I was still in elementary school.

Maybe this sounds like the beginning of a happy story of faith and discovery. It was not. My family’s journey into the Catholic Church was a long, tumultuous and unpleasant road punctuated by a series of awful mistreatments by Catholic clergy, religious, schools and parishioners. (It’s a miracle that I’m still Catholic and became a Catholic journalist.)

The Latin Mass rears its veiled head in this unholy history at several points. The last Masses my mother remembered attending took place before the Second Vatican Council, so naturally she started going to Latin Masses when she returned to the church because they were familiar. The church was going to welcome us, she thought. The treatment we got was slightly shy of the Spanish Inquisition.

Needless to say, anything in the church looking remotely female was completely veiled. The people had the humor of a gallows crowd and the pastor, arrayed in lavish vestments, was more like a Renaissance baron. After over an hour spent every Sunday drowning in incense smoke and getting sneered at, we did not feel any closer to God.

“You should come to the Latin Mass instead and wear a veil. Women look the most beautiful in church when they are veiled,” he tried to persuade.

Rules, also, were a strange issue. For example, the color red was forbidden to be worn in the church. A confessor there hit one of my family members with a “permanent daily penance”— a rosary every day, forever, to atone for an alleged life of iniquity. After some while of this torture, my mother spoke with a different priest about the unbearable situation. He advised her that genuine Catholic faith did not forbid wearing certain colors or allow priests to inflict a “lifetime penance” for sins. Immediately we stopped going to Mass at that parish.

But it wasn’t the last time I would run into Latin Masses — or the Latin Mass sectarians, present today in many Catholic organizations. 

After almost leaving the church as a teenager, I chose to stay Catholic by practicing my faith as a free agent — belonging to no parish, attending different churches for Sunday Mass. On one instance, a priest noticed I was showing up semi-regularly and approached me with a persuasive speech to convert me to the Latin Mass faction — disguising discrimination as encouragement. “You should come to the Latin Mass instead and wear a veil. Women look the most beautiful in church when they are veiled,” he tried to persuade. “The long veils are the best kind — the really long ones, past the shoulders. I recommend that for you — you have such pretty red hair, but it would even look nicer if you wore a veil over it. I think the long kind would be best for you.”
Most disturbing about this conversation was his effort to make repression sound positive. Of course it made no sense that my hair would somehow look better if people couldn’t see it. Indignant, I asked him to explain why he thought I should consider covering my head.

“Because it’s respectful,” he replied solemnly.

When asked why it was disrespectful to show the hair that God gave me — and why men in church did not have to cover their hair — he was not able to answer. He reacted badly because I challenged his authority. Anyway, I had no intention of listening. I knew I was free to take my belief in God elsewhere. I never returned to that church afterwards.  

The priest’s attitude towards veiling women is typical of Latin Mass cultists. They seem to believe that women look better in church when people can’t see them. They try to sell the veil to girls as a symbol of feminine piety. They hold that covering up and hiding yourself is beautiful although such a practice is the very opposite of natural beauty.
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how pretty, lacy or colorful the veils may seem to potential wearers — the veils are meant to conceal female beauty and prevent people from noticing women. By promoting the veil, Latin Mass fundamentalists rob women of freedom, while trying to make it seem like a liberating choice. Their attitude is not much different from religious extremists in the Middle East and Asia.

Given such practices, it should come as no surprise that a contingent of men active within the sectarian Latin Mass environment have sexist worldviews. These types believe they are superior to women simply because they are male.

I cite two examples to support my view. One occasion that remains burned into my memory was when I attended Mass at a Catholic university. It was a busy Sunday and my schedule demanded I attend Mass at a particular time. I did not know it was a Latin Mass until I stumbled over the doorstep. The atmosphere was typically medieval. I was surprised to recognize some people there. One of them was a professor who was known to be a chauvinistic person. When I saw his wife, I was shocked — and suddenly realized the ugly extent of his prejudices. His wife was a mere ghost of a woman. She was covered from head to foot. Her dress was so long that it dragged on the floor. Even her entire neck and her hands were covered. She kept her head bowed and always walked behind her husband. She carried a rosary and looked physically weak — almost ill.

The professor, by contrast, looked swaggering and hearty. He strutted around and chatted with others in church as she followed him like a pale shadow. Seeing this, I believed I had witnessed a very dark side to the professor’s spirituality. His religion was a mechanism of abusive control.

My second example concerns a younger Catholic age group — many of whom are apparently falling victim to the ultra-traditional Latin Mass ideology promoted in Catholic activity groups and on college campuses. A female acquaintance of mine, about my age, decided to brave the Catholic dating scene — a recipe for disaster, in my personal opinion. Among the stories I heard from her were of traditional Catholic males shopping for wives, asking her and other girls, “Are you willing to be veiled?” before agreeing to date them. These men did not want to associate with women whom they couldn’t religiously dominate.

Men she met in this traditional Catholic peer group would interview girls about theology before deciding to spend time with them — they were arrogant and believed they were somehow morally superior to the women. Instead of standing up for her own dignity, she decided to cave into the pressure — go to traditional services and start wearing veils. I still don’t understand why she wanted to associate with that group, or why she decided to give in to oppression.

It is very unfortunate that younger generations of Catholics seeking to deepen their faith are getting sucked into this vortex of toxic, traditional radicalism. I saw many young families at a Latin Mass recently when I was invited to attend a speaking engagement at a traditional church. I happened to arrive before Mass was quite over — having nowhere else to go before the event, and wishing to receive Communion, I decided to sit in on the Mass. Unsurprisingly I found myself surrounded by veiled women who entertained themselves in between kneeling bouts by casting disapproving glances at my leggings and earrings.

Looking around, I was astonished to see many college-aged men and women among the crowd. The priests seemed to be in their 30s. Clearly these people were too young to remember times before Vatican II. Yet something had drawn them here. Parental influence? Doubtful. It seemed to be a shared spirit of ultra-conservatism. I found it frightening to reflect on how the closed, Latin Mass mindset had managed to replicate itself over time and spread like a virus.

Unsurprisingly, while there I had another memorably bad experience. I asked to receive Communion in the hands. Most traditional-type priests I’d encountered in my lifetime would give me the Eucharist in the hands. Not this pastor. He literally made a scene at the altar and jerked the Eucharist away from me when I reached out to receive it — as if my hands would contaminate the very Jesus who, according to the Catholic faith, seeks Communion with my soul. I seriously considered walking out of the church at that point, but decided to receive the Eucharist instead since I wanted to pray. After Mass I gave the priests a piece of my mind.

I reminded him that, as a priest, he was supposed to be of service and value my feedback as a believer. 

Clericalism defined the response I received. When I informed an assisting priest that the pastor had been very rude to me at the altar and asked that my views be relayed, he replied: “I won’t throw our pastor under the bus. He’s the pastor. I refuse to tell him to correct his behavior,” the priest said.
I reminded him that, as a priest, he was supposed to be of service and value my feedback as a believer. The priest took a step back and looked at me in astonishment, as if the notion of service had never occurred to him. “Very well. I’ll tell the pastor what you said,” he said condescendingly. “But I don’t think he did anything wrong.”

His attitude was a trademark example of the culture within the Catholic Church that encourages abuse. His first reaction was to default to absolute loyalty to his pastor, then dismiss my views. When pressed further, he flat-out denied all wrongdoing. To clericalists, complainers are always the problem — not those who belong to the herd, and certainly not clergy.

With feudalistic rigidity, the priest argued in defense of his pastor against the traditions of the “novus ordo”—a derogatory term used by Latin Mass cultists to denote regular English-language Masses. He said the Masses I regularly attended were invented “only 40 years ago” — as if that devalued them somehow —and insisted they were only “allowed to exist, but not standardly recommended.” He claimed the church only allowed Communion in the hands “in extreme cases.” Of course, I know this is not true. He capped his radical fundamentalist arguments by saying the Latin Mass is a solemn rite equal to Byzantine and Coptic rites and that rules cannot be changed for anyone. He accused me of being “rude” by expecting them “to change their rites.”

I feel it necessary to point out — lest readers be confused by his illogicality — that the Byzantine and Coptic rites originate in the traditions of distinct Catholic churches in foreign countries. The Latin Mass, by contrast, is merely an extinct model of tradition practiced in the United States and other countries, and was never a separate church nor imported from a foreign country. Therefore the Latin Mass can be compared to Coptic and Byzantine churches as much as apples can be compared to oranges. No ancient Romans or native Latin speakers will be disenfranchised by changes made to the Latin Mass — just hardliners unable to let go of their particular ideology.

What I gained from this experience was a deeper recognition of how the Latin Mass foments the clericalist culture within the Catholic Church that Pope Francis is actively working to change.
In his homily earlier last month, Pope Francis warned Catholics against hypocrisy. He described hypocrisy as “appearing one way, but acting in another,” and said that a hypocritical attitude “always kills.”

Jesus did not tolerate hypocrisy, according to Pope Francis, but enjoyed unmasking it. “A Christian who does not know how to accuse himself is not a good Christian,” the pope said.

The intolerant atmosphere of the Latin Mass stands in stark contrast to Pope Francis’s description of what the Catholic Church is supposed to be. “The church is not a fortress, but a tent capable of expanding and offering access to everyone,” said Pope Francis. “The church is ‘going out’ or it is not church, either it is walking, always widening its room so that all may enter or else it is not church.”
Compassion defines true Catholicism. Radical traditionalists who cling to the pomp, ceremony and narrow-minded rituals of outdated Latin practices would do well to follow the advice of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 9: “Go and learn the meaning of the words, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ “
[Zita Ballinger Fletcher has reported extensively on Germany’s Catholic Church for Catholic News Service.]

PATS SAYS

This is a hard hitting article.

But we must think about the points Ms Fletcher is making and ask if she is right or wrong.

Personally, I believe, the Extraordinary Form is NOT in keeping with the thinking and theology of Vatican 11.

And, that is bad for the church as a whole.

The Novus Ordo Mass has much, much more in common with the Breaking of the Bread conducted by Jesus Himself and later by the early church.

When the English Jesuit George Tyrrell was branded a “modernist” by Cardinal Mercier in 1908 he responded by writing a book called MEDIEVALISM.

He was making the point that Catholic Christianity cannot be reduced to the thinking or practices of the Medieval period in the church.

And that’s where the Latin Mass people have gone wrong – in that they are equating the whole theology of the Eucharist for what passed in medieval times – the time when ordinary people were poor and ignorant and the world especially the church, was under the feudal system.

Fletcher makes her point well that the Latin Mass movement smacks of cultism, sexism and clericalism.

Personally, I think Benedict made a grave error by making the Extraordinary Form so prevalent.

I would not ask for the Extraordinary Form to be banned – but it should be restricted.

The Novus Ordo Mass in the Mass of the Vatican 11 era.

And it best expresses the theology of the Vatican 11 period.

Is clinging to the Latin Mass not a little like the Amish insisting on horse and carriages instead of motor cars?

Could the Latin Mass folk be worshipping the idol of Medievalism and not God Himself?

160 replies on “DOES THE LATIN MASS ENCOURAGE CULTISM, SEXISM AND CLERICALISM?”

I read the article; it is more emotively self-defensive than intellectually measured.
It is always a poor sign when a writer becomes exclamatory in his opening paragraph, and I counted two exclamation marks here in Shaw’s piece. The practice tends to presage a tub-thumping, sermonising rant, and this is what we got, more or less, with his continued use of hissy-fitting exclamation.
The sad thing about Shaw’s apologia (Did he compose it over the breakfast table, his nerves on edge as his wife got their eight kids ready for school?) is that it took absolutely nothing from Fletcher’s NCR article: he dismissed all her experiences, perceptions and interpretations as ‘hilarious’. Now this is the reaction I’d expect from someone so inarticulate that the only option realistically open to him is abusiveness; but I’d expect a little more insight, even profoundity, from an Oxford man with a doctorate in Philosophy. Of course, I did state in my very first sentence that Shaw’s article was ‘more emotively self-defensive than intellectually measured’. So what more could I reasonably have expected?
What did I take from Dr Shaw’s piece?
Um, how not to critique. 😕

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1:30pm
The Queen of Academia aka MC. is having one of her hissy fits again telling everyone how to critique, but only if you agree with hers. It must have been yet another night on the grargle to be able to agree with the cretin Fletcher who is probably The Grand Mistress of The Happy Clappy Cult and they are indeed a Cult. Those of us who love The Tridentine Rite are very happy that the Cult were not able to get their way, and deny us the right to worship as we have done all our lives. I agree entirely with the intervention of Cardinal’s Ottaviani and Bacci to Montini who despite being informed that Bugnini the author of this dreadful protestant novus ordo was a freemason! allowed it to go ahead but exiled Bugnini to Iran. We can only thank Almighty God that despite all the modernist Cults efforts to destroy The Holy Mass they have been unsuccessful.

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Thank God I was born after the Latin Mass went out of everyday use. I cant imagine that there was many people who attended who could hand on heart say they knew and understood everything that was happening. I can imagine a priest saying a mass after a few drinks, maybe getting his words all mixed up and there was very few in the church that could go to him afterwards and say that what you said father was wrong. I read in a newspaper an article written by a former staff member in Maynooth who has returned to his diocese to take up a Parish Priest position where he said people in the past went to mass to stop people talking about them as people would say that X or Y was not at mass today, and pointed out that today with the mass in English or in Irish in the Gaeltacht areas people go because they want to.

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@8:26 Your faith that priests would necessarily follow the rules is touching but mistaken. The fact that many priests are well known to have gone their own way in other areas doesn’t hold much hope they would do otherwise in the Liturgy.

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Can the people who attend theNew Mass understand everything?
Obviously not, as statistics show a vast number do not even believe in the Real Presence

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The Latin Mass at the current form of the Roman Rite are worlds apart and representative of two different religions.
The Latin Mass is from a world of superstition, fables, biblical illiteracy and pagnism.
The current form of the mass is Christian, can be traced to biblical breaking of bread and is culturally flexible.
The Church strayed from the Bible and into theological error as the liturgy and its theology developed and it refused to listen, declaring those who were screaming “something is wrong here’ to be heretics rather than confront the possibility that they might be wrong.
Any seminarian or young priest who wishes to say the obselete Latin Mass should be disciplined and/or expelled. The Church wants to be faithful to truth and not superstition.

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Well, the Tridentine Latin Mass liturgically had very little in common with the first and only Mass, the Last Supper, conducted in the locus of a Jewish celebration, Passover.
To speak of biblical illerteracy, and error, here is hardly missing the mark.

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It wasn’t the Passover, that took place on the evening of Good Friday which was why he was buried quickly before nightfall.The Last Supper was on the Thursday evening and was a thanksgiving offering of unleavened bread and wine followed by the singing of psalms in Hebrew.

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2.20, I disagree with you about the ritual nature and significance of the Last Supper. The timing of this event (whether immediately pre-paschal, or occuring within it) is entirely a moot point and, indeed, long has been. Either way it was, as I said, conducted within the locus (context) of the Passover Seder, because without this reference the symbolism of the meal would have made little or no sense to the disciples.

To alienate the Last Supper from the Passover makes as much sense as separating the passion and death of Jesus from his ressurrection.

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Liturgical traditionalism in the Church is the visible banner, and the rallying cry and point, for a broad spectrum of conservative world views or ideologies; it is not a visible hankering for sublime piety in worship, because its centre, and devotion, is not Christ, but self.

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I hope that Patricia McKeever, of Catholic Truth Scotland, reads today’s blog.I very much doubt, though, that she will be swayed by it, anymore than the majority of Pharisees were swayed by Jesus’ teaching and miracles.

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Which form is “extraordinary”? Which of the three Latin Masses is “extraordinary”? Why let people of a certain mindset hijack one or more of those? Is the old English Mass (facing the people) – surely a more burning issue – considered “ordinary”? Is “mass” even important (apart from readings, hymns and Lord’s Prayer)?
Package dealing is typical Rome; but years back even we who called ourselves Roman were cafeteria because we knew it’s safer. Why draw any lines between what is compulsory and what is unspeakable? Why ask any laity to use their minds, at all?
I’ve never encountered a Roman that was honest about council. John said we should stop doing our homework and it shows. Heenan (no stick-in-the-mud) was plain embarrassed at the shambles.
The rest of them only keep up the pretense out of bossiness, it doesn’t matter what they are supposed to be “for” as long as they don’t explain it. We were told we were going to be told what the doctrines and practices were going to be. Can you find a “catholic” that even prays?
The only proper answer to more bossiness will be less bossiness. What “style of churchmanship” matters not a whit but the old English Mass might help (the trendy clergy were horrified when it was suppressed).

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At what I remember of the “old” English mass we received the host in our hands and I don’t remember a rail for kneeling, either.
The person who disputed with Ms Fletcher was conflating several issues dishonestly.

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Yes they could well be, Pat.
However this article makes a false connection between the old mass and this toxic culture, which isn’t the same everywhere. The SSPX for example is notorious for silly rules about clothes.
Outside of the circles she talks about there are groups which celebrate this mass but don’t have the culture. The exact opposite would be the Anglican circles in the US which use the English Missal – the old missal in English – but are still affirming and do things like celebrating same sex marriage and still use this mass.
She is making a direct connection between the attitudes of those attending and the mass, and that isn’t always the case.
Another example would be the point about the old mass being all about the priest – surely she must have been to one of the many new rite masses where the priest gets in the way of any worship!

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The priest gets in the way of worship? JC! What insignificant, nitpicking concerns you people have. I sometimes think Jesus must wonder whether he should have bothered incarnating himself.
Do you think Jesus got in the way of worship when he interacted face to face with his disciples at the Last Supper? Perhaps he should have celebrated ad orientem to avoid the self-consciousness of the sensitive.
Will people ever grow up?

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It seems to be some sort of last refuge for certain gay men who would have otherwise been employed in vaudeville of the circus in years gone by.

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What do you mean by the Latin Mass, Bishop Patrick? The term could be used by the Ambrosian, Carthusian, Dominican, Extraordinary and Ordinary forms. Oh, I forgot the Sarum, Mozarabic, the Braga, the Lyonnais and probably other rites. All use Latin, but I suspect that you and the author of that article are referring to the Trent Mass as revised in 1962.
You are correct that the Trent Rite does not embody the thought of Vatican II. Indeed the 1972 Missale, especially in its pasted together collects, better proclaims the ideas of that council. Alas, the empty churches declare the council’s apparent failure.
As to restricting the Trent Mass, not a chance. The internet and Lord knows whatever future form of technology replaces it has seen to that. You yourself have had a greater influence than would be possible without your blog.

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Seraphim, thank you for your thoughtful response.
Should the church not be embracing the theology of Vatican 11.
It was a universal Council attended by the world’s bishops and overseen by the Bishop of Rome.
I’m not saying that it was infallible. But in our Catholic tradition does such a council not carry great weight?
Are the churches really empty because of Vatican 11. Has that not got more to do with general loss of religious faith alongside materialism and secularism, not to mention the awful sexual abuse scandals?

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The authority of a council has got to vary according to what quality and clarity (or lack of) has been squeezed out of it. In a region where catholics were sparser than in most of England, my family weren’t orphanage victims or hierarchy victims (and had had almost zero catechesis since my forebears “enquired”) so we didn’t have hangups about what oppression any of the older styles of liturgy “represented”.

Even before the old English came in, my mass book had the English explanations. I never felt affronted that, earlier, the priest had faced the other way (though I liked the turnaround at the “old” English one I am describing): we kids were more sophisticated then than I think they are allowed to be today. We never saw fancy hats nor lace, and incense was the minimum.

Most of my own religion came from secular schools. Denominational religion had sat lightly on Mum & Dad but they were too respectful at the time. It became apparent in later years how little they had got out of Council and out of the media and sex obsessions of the popes. Your independence Bp Pat helps you get far more benefit out of everything you choose.

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9.56, actually, no; the Second Vatican Council kept the lights glowing a little longer.

The decline in theism began in the Tridentine era.

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1920s the contraception battle was lost
1940s the orientation battle was lost
1969 (Christmas) the liturgy battles were finally lost
1981 the life of the laity battle was lost
We just haven’t twigged yet

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What is it about men who want to ponce around wearing lace, gold braid, and birettas with various coloured pompoms on top ? Really ! It just raises all sort of questions and rings all sorts of alarm bells. These are mostly men who are in denial about something, repressed, frustrated, and full of self-loathing, just trying to cover up what is really happening by entering in to a fantasy world of make believe. Most eventually learn and move on, leave, go wild, because who and what they really are will eventually out. Why have anything to do with a Church that is dominated by these kind of nancy boys ?!

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The Liturgy tranny lace queens are all out in force. These old fossils should be put out to pasture. If you want to dress up go to Funny Girls in Blackpool or the nearest Pantomime to be a Dame.

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So basically it’s a plain polyester faux alb with a zip that gives the appearance of something else that matters? The linen alb is a direct link to the Baptised of the Apostolic era, it is symbolic of the seamless robe of Christ. The linen needs careful laundering and pressing which is time consuming and symbolic of sacrifice. The introduction of lace provided decoration and a sense of festive Joy but also made the garment lighter to wear. A polyester alb is machine made in China and then sold by Hayes and Finch at a profit, the wearers pop them on without a prayer three minutes before the bell. Perhaps a plain unadorned linen alb would be more suitable for the modern liturgy but not something that looks like its from Lulu and the Young Generation

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12.29, Jesus wore something far less sartorially fanciful when he offered the first and only Mass, the Last Supper.
Preoccupy that very narrow, parochial mind of yours with what really matters: with what is lasting.
And it isn’t lien albs, you utter fool. 😄

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Jesus wore a linen, seamless robe at the Last Supper. The Last Supper is not the first Mass if you believe the Mass is the sacrifice of the cross and resurrection renewed. The vestments do not claim to be replicas of Jesus’ actually clothing but that the alb is a universal symbol of his garments from the Passion.

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2.15, you are expressing heresy if you believe that ‘Mass is the sacrifice of the cross and resurrection renewed’. This means that Jesus must die for sin, over and over, that his passion, death, and resurrection were insufficient, a denial of 1Peter 3: 18:
‘For Christ also died for sins ONCE FOR ALL…’ .
The Mass today is not an additional Mass, because it merely re-presents the first and only Mass, the Last Supper.
Your preoccupation with what Jesus wore is expressive of Pharaisaism: interest in the trivial rather than the important. It is why Jesus, in utter exasperation with the legalism of the Pharisees, described this misdirection of their efforts as straining a ‘gnat’, but swallowing a ‘camel’.

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For some reason the (post-) Trent mass doesn’t have as numerous a group of devotees as in the UK, US or France. It would be interesting to discover why this is so.

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Have these queens seriously studied Latin, Bp Pat, or have they just learnt the lines associated with the Latin Rite off by heart?
Of course, the dragging-up part will come naturally to them.

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I was once told by somebody who worked at the St Luke’s Centre that it is not unusual for traditionalists to have experimented with transvestism at some point in their lives. Traditionalist vestments and lace fill a gap once filled with their desires to wear dresses, knickers and bras. They are often very conflicted, broken people.
There is a story of a very traditionalist curate in the early 90s who was found to be working as a drag queen in Soho on his evenings off.
Traditionalist Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJV is still fondly remembered on the Brighton drag scene.

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I love that guy. Isn’t he also a tight rope walker?
He needs credit for the amount of social work he does as well of course

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When they are not dressing up and doing their Latin thing at the altar, what else do these SSPX fags do, Bp Pat, apart from candlestick-polishing?

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The preoccupations by some clerics and scoffers today are sad and pathetic. Aside from the questionable practice of the wearing by clerics of ancient vestments and the saying of the Old Latin Mass – which some people still enjoy for its sense of the SACRED and mystery – the comments by some are disgusting. If this is what annoys you most, God help your sensitivities and sense of priorities. You are a laughable pack whose only objective is not to “remedy” what you perceive as anachronistic in 2020, but to mock, jeer, name call and ridicule those who choose differently. Perhaps you should all look seriously into your own closets!! With eyes wide open!!!

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Easy. To remind clergy that they are humans and functionaries of an abusive institution, both of which you’re determined to forget.

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2:05, people who abuse others, and say all kinds of nasty things about them, are reflecting their own disgusting character.

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Sorry, luv. You are right, liturgy is beautiful in all its forms when conducted with sincerity of heart and faith.
You have made a good point at 2:05pm

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This blog is one of the few places in the world where people can publicly tell the clergy what they really think of them. As such it is a valuable service by Bishop Buckley.
Now you may want to reply that that is a terrible thing to want to do. And I will reply that it is inhumane to belong to an organisation which has systematically tortured children and hidden the many crimes of its staff. Any other organisation would have been closed down but you all fail to realise that the fact you’re just carrying on is symptomatic of your privilege and the fact you don’t see this merely indicates you don’t get it.
Because the church has not yet paid for its crimes – however this will come as more and more crimes are revealed.
So keep snivelling that it’s terrible, because people like me will continue to remind you of the truth you refuse to see until governments finally come to their senses and treat your cult as it should be treated.
If you had the merest smidgeon of understanding you would be independent.

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@ 2.05: What you describe of the ‘Old Latin Mass’ as its ‘sense of the SACRED’ is as individual as personal appeal of beauty, and just as subjective. What you hold as sacred here is merely a projection of your preference; nothing more. Sad fact is, we each mould God in our individual image of him.

Your understanding of deity isn’t necessarily valueless, unless it fills you with supercilious disregard for others’ sense of the sacred, which they find satisfied in the New Rite of Mass. In my experience, Catholic traditionalists are scornful of the New Rite and, therefore, disparage the experience of God found there.

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5.04, which means that your sense of the sacred is valueless, since it leads you to disparage and dismiss the sense others have.

A kingdom divided against itself…

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2.05: Very good comment. Beauty, silence, mystery and God come in many forms. I recall the Old Latin Mass as a child and teenager and enjoyed the specialises of it. I also recall the change over to the new rite and I find beauty in this too. Because I believe (good) liturgy should take us to reverence, joy, prayerfulness and closer to God, all of us need to respect the different expressions of Mass so long as we remember who and where the the real focus is and should be: JESUS CHRIST. There is an inability in our culture generally to be “silent” and “reverential” and to enter into “realms of mystery” and thus the awful impoverishment of much liturgical celebrations. I think some commenters are deliberately bitchy and are lacking sincerity as they moan, complain and name call like dirty old queens!!

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4.49, so ‘some commentors are deliberately bitchy and are lacking sincerity as they moan, complain and name call like dirty old queens!!’.
You do, don’t you, see the supreme irony of that remark?
I hope you do, for I should not wish anyone so… unself-conscious.😕

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Pope Francis has appointed Monsignor Patrick Buckley, the parish priest of Larne, as the New Archbishop of Dublin. The announcement was made in Rome earlier this morning. Born in Tullamore in County Offaly in 1952, he would later study at Clonliffe College and then at St. John’s College, Waterford. He was ordained in 1976 in Waterford by the Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Michael Russell and went on to receive a Master of Social Science degree in 1989 by The Queen’s University of Belfast. Fr Buckley has served in a number of Parishes both in Ireland and Wales. The announcement came as a surprise to many as it was widely speculated that the bishop of limerick would succeed Archbishop Martin. Speaking of his appointment Fr Buckley said that he hoped to bring a ‘newness’ and a deeper humanity to the role.

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The article slides over another thing about the old rite when it says it used to be uniform in the US. That has literally never been true and before the council in a Dominican church you would have found the Dominican rite, etc. The 1570 missal was used to eliminate much more previous liturgical variety if it was perceived to be relatively recent.
The Cure d’Ars, for example, never said the Roman breviary, and as uniformity spread further with ultramontanism in the nineteenth century he had a dispensation to carry on saying the breviary of Lyon, partly because it was shorter and gave him more time hearing confession.
My point is that much of the mythos of the old rite is slightly ahistorical. I cannot believe there weren’t priests who said the old mass badly and weren’t fussed what they wore. One of the points of the liturgical movement was that the church’s life wasn’t really liturgical but based on devotions and I am just as sure that there were priests who would consider their morning meditation more important than mass.

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The Dominican Rite was in Latin, it wasn’t less than the Roman Rite it had additions, the same is true for the Mass the Cure D Ars offered it wasn’t in french, facing the people using a form created by a committee over four years for the purpose of being inoffensive to Protestants

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What a load of rant from
Ms Fletcher who fires off in every direction, so though there are one or valid observations amid the blustering indignation about virtually everything, it would be too wearisome to unpack.
Though 99% of the Masses I have attended in my life have been Novus Ordo, I believe she is entirely wrong to claim that it is the Old Mass which is self-consciously self centred. All the rubrics are designed to prevent that impression: the heart and mind are driven to look beyond the action of the priest to the eternal reality they signify- the Window in the Wall in Ronald Knox’s celebrated sermons.
I am far less comfortable with Solemn High Mass liturgies which can indeed turn into pantomime.

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3.45, ‘All the rubrics ( of the “Old Mass”) are designed to prevent that impression (highlighting “the action of the priest”).
Your statement might make more sense if the priest here didn’t dress to impress.
You do see the Achille’s heel of your argument, don’t you?

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You have a point of course, simply because the Old Mass is no longer the Ordinary Form, so any traddie dress code egregious. Lace and flowery silk are not part of the rubrics, so I should prefer the celebrant to use simple modern vestments and NO LACE!

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its a liturgical abuse. There are many other opportunities for ecumenical prayer. It could have taken place outside with all faiths present. Instead, the priest allowed it to take place during the liturgy.

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Stephen Farragher, the priest in question, is a good man; we were students together at Maynooth.
I can only assume that the Muslims he invited to his church acted in very bad faith by chanting the Adhan; they have done themselves, and other Muslims in Ireland, no favours and probably have deepened distrust against Muslim immigrants. (I refuse to call them ‘migrants’.)
Stephen may not have known the significance of the Adhan, but those Muslims did; and they would have known the significance, and profound disrespect, of chanting it in a Catholic church prayer service.
If Stephen is at fault, it is for not ensuring that mutually respectful prayer was offered.

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6:56, an experienced cleric who lives in one of the highest Muslim populated towns in Mayo and a former staff member of the National Seminary didn’t ‘know the significance of the Adhan’. G’wan outter that!

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Stephen Farragher is a bullshi**er. I know for a fact that Tuam were inundated with complaints about this incident and calls for them to issue some sort of statement. Both Tuam and Farragher made no public statement. Instead they ignored the christian faithful.

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I’m the poster at 6.56. Then picket the premises of both men until they do respond.

I never had Stephen down as a coward.

I hope I wasn’t wrong, Stephen.

Chris

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4.03, those words are indeed from the Adhan, the Islamic call to prayer.
I very much doubt that the entire Adhan was chanted; only the parts we hear. My Arabic is rusty, but I can make out:
‘Hayya ‘a la-s-salah. (‘Hurry to prayer.’) And ‘Hayya ‘ala-l-Falah.’ (‘Hurry to salvation.’)
Many people would certainly have been concerned about this, though in themselves, there is nothing wrong with those words. But chanting them in Arabic does seem utterly pointless, since I doubt whether many Catholics would have understood them. However, they would have recognised the chant sound as Islamic.
I suspect this is another example of a priest’ ploughing his own furrow.

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that is the shorter video, there is a longer video. The Islamic Cleric can be heard singing in the presence of the blessed sacrament that there is no god but Allah (i.e. no Blessed Trinity) and Muhammad is his prophet.

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Ah, sure now! Priests have done worse things in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, like rape eight-year-old girls, and perform felatio on seminarians languishing on altars.
Jesus would just laugh off the nonsense of the former, but not the depravity of the latter.
To be sure. 😕

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They are both over rated in my view, and whilst perhaps originally being benign in their teaching, their followers over the centuries have inflicted so much harm on each other and the world. How can anybody bother with people who seem to engender as much hate as they claim to bring about love. So, you can keep both Mo and Jez as far as I’m concerned. And if any of you want to declare holy war on me, make my day……

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The Second Vatican Council taught that Catholic’s along with Muslims adore the same God. This implies that Allah is the one God not the Trinity of three persons in one Godhead. Either God is Allah or he’s not, either Jesus is God or he’s an esteemed prophet second only to the perfect man Mohammed Blessed be his Holy Name

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5.56, it is true that Ch Two , para 16, of Lumen Gentium states as you suggest. But it does not mean what you think. The wording is sensitive, diplomatic and ecumenical, but ultimately, it does not deny the Church’s core dogma of the Trinity. The paragraph acknowledges that Islam, like Christianity, is monotheistic; this is all it acknowledges. It does not deny the oneness of God in three persons.

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5:30pm
You’re entitled to your own opinion but it’s not every ones, the more lace albs and cotta’s the better as well as beautiful Roman Vestments A.M.D.G. If you want to be part of the polyester denim, drip dry, zipper brigade cult so be it. But don’t try to impose it on everyone else.

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Can we tap on the head, once and for all, the stupid claim that the Traditional Latin Mass is somehow favoured by gay clerics. The following are household names on the blog and not one has celebrated or supported the TLM, or ever been associated with it, or seen at it.
Rory Coyle: Eucharistic Prayer 2, twenty-minute Mass. Hated lace.
Fr McCamley: hostile to the TLM. Loved polyester vestments.
Ex-PP of Pomeroy: hostile to the TLM.
The following never celebrated a TLM since introduction of the Novus Ordo:
Cardinals McCarrick, Tobin, Daaneels, CMOC, Hume, Coccopalmerio, O’Brien. Archbishops Vancetta, Paglia and Ventura. Mgr Ricca (of whom Francis said “who am I to judge). James Martin SJ. Robert Mickens.
Maynooth people never associated with the TLM: Gorgeous, Ronan Drury, Trolleybus, King Puck, Horney Andy, Marshall, Prior, Connolly, Fanny, the German Department.
Misc: the various Scots priests mentioned on the blog. Fr Lomnasney, Rev Chris Butler.

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Whereas Sadie loves having her hand kissed at a Latin mass, can’t wait to get into the next lace alb, and is coincidentally as queer as a coot.

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Oh, but…..most of those young ones you’ve named from Maynooth may not be liturgical lace queens, but they are definitely queens when it comes to sexuality. And very active ones at that. You fail to mention Power Bottom JPL. Of the lot, he gets my vote ! I wonder how he’s powering on with his special project for Portsmouth Diocese ?

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5:56pm
HERESY, Our Lord Jesus Christ is God the second person of The Holy Trinity and even to mention His Holy Name with some false prophet is a disgrace. Blessed be The Holy Name of Jesus True God and True Man.

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I have some reservations on Latin Mass. It doesn’t suit deaf people as a whole cos some of them might depend on lip reading in order to follow the mass. Not all deaf able to lip read as it’s a myth re all deaf. What concerns me was the fanaticism, extreme views usually very right wing. No questions asked re tlm society re abuses cos they consider themselves holy and sacred. However CM exposed them big time as it warns of the dangers inherent in relation to Latin Mass and its fanatical priests (not all priests though). Latin Mass exclusion of deaf people which put us off cos it’s not relevant being not able to follow mass. Plus have to learn dead language such as Latin. Latin Mass demeans people with disabilities, women et all therefore not inclusive in the true sense. It’s obsession bordered on the fanatical side of it that we have to beware of and not go too far with them in right wing views usually fascism which isn’t surprising in the least.

On the other hand, new mass and Latin mass are valid except for Latin Mass which is ilict??? Latin Mass is very useful if you are under spiritual attack as their prayers are effective in some cases but not new mass. However I found some healing that came through the new mass rather than Latin Mass.

Wonder why mass was said in Latin something that I don’t understand. Jesus said mass in Hebrew if I’m correct then change over to Latin Mass what gives???

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Bishop Pat. I’m from St Cuthbert’s Blackpool. Fr Etienne printed this in his newsletter this week Quote of the week “ From Canon Alf Hayes preaching at the recent funeral of the late Canon Frank Cookson: “That’s as far as I’m going with anecdotes about Frank today, because, unlike the current fashion for making funerals into a memorial service, ‘A Celebration of the Life of Someone’, we all know why we’re really here; not so much to say what a great bloke he was, even though that’s true, but to pray for the repose of his soul, something I certainly hope people will one day do for me.”
He said it’s to shut up “the lay people” who blogged about him on your platform that he said he is taking legal advice about. He is missing the point. We all agree that purpose of a Requiem Mass, but wearing black vestments and preaching during a particularly difficult funeral in a fire and brimstone fashion and wearing a beretta is not helping anyone. Then his general behaviour that has already been discussed here. The man is a total liability and a disgrace to the Priesthood. He has said he has plans for “big changes” in this Parish when he takes over on Monday. God help us all. I’ve been in the Parish for 37 years and waved it goodbye earlier today because of that plonker. I live in hope that he will be removed or jack in sooner rather than later. I’ve written a letter to Bishop Swarbrick, plus the Metropolitan Archbishop of Liverpool, Cardinal Nichols, the Nuncio Archbishop Gugerotti and the Congregation for the Clergy. Will they be surprised that a man recently ordained is now on their radar? Do you think they’ll reply? He just isn’t suitable to head up any Parish. Why aren’t they supporting him by getting him out of there into a Parish under an experienced Pastor?

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What colour clothes did the people going to the funeral wear? I’ve never been to a funeral in anything but a black suit and tie and so did everyone else. I thought it was the appropriate colour to show respect.

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St Cuthbert’s the Hagia Sophia of the Golden Mile. The First Fridays at that place are standing room only.

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Not more boring shit for Blackpool. The Vegas of the UK. Bide your time, he will be moved before long. Stop wasting any more time moaning. Stop your money and move elsewhere. Leave him to it. PS I see that Blackpool has a several gay saunas and even a torture chamber – @Blackpool dom top – sounds a right lovely place!

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It’s the threats to remove their money that’s the biggest joke since Larry Grayson was at the ABC Blackpool, they put pennies in and think they are stakeholders , did the widow in the Temple go up to Caiaphas and have a rant about Annas?

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The Skid Row of the UK, you mean. The seaside town they forgot to close down, as TripAdvisor calls it.

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Oh no, another Nuncio correpondent. Jim S sends a sackful to the Nunciature every week as it is. The poor nuncio won’t have a minute he can call his own.

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St Cuthbert’s is going to be a renewed ‘House of Prayer’ exciting times! Some liturgical reordering needed but fortunately it faces geographical east as well as liturgically. The tired old pews are going to be removed and the 1980s green carpet will be extended to cover all parts of the floor. Soon you will be called to pray amongst a truly diverse and welcoming community in the same language that Jesus himself spoke at the first Mass. Because of Covid communion won’t be given out at services and First Fridays are now exclusive for men.

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Pat, I long for the simpler days, before it went international, when the blog was mainly about the gold door handles and £100 a roll wallpaper in Lisbreen.

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Returning, for a moment, to Belfast matters, the celebration of Mass resumes in St Agnes’s this Wednesday. Many parishoners feared that, like Eason’s, it wasn’t going to reopen.

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What put me off big time in Latin Mass was mother Burke presiding a Latin Mass in Cork that I entered into a church for a quick prayer. It’s extreme display with pomp, laces, cappa magna which was distasteful, very backwards in this modern day and age. It’s too feminine especially coming from a man wearing these dress. It bordered in the extreme and out of touch with modern times. A repressed homophobe I think. Its vulgar display which had me a watching him for an hour instead of getting away, which I realised that church isn’t about them, it’s about jesus full stop.

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Terrible , he should really be the Oscar Romero of the Golden Mile with a special ministry to the clinically obese. Doesn’t he realise we want purple gothic vestments and plain albs and we want them now

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Deaf Guy

Get a grip if it was so distasteful to you why did you not just leave. What is distasteful to me is your vulgar insult to His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke, the vestments you find feminine were the norm before the dreadful vat ii and no one thought anything about it as all prelates wore them. I think you should worry about yourself that you watched it for an hour! if was so distasteful why did you not leave? There is nothing wrong with the Capa Magna a magnificent vestment and a pity we don’t see it more often, long live tradition and our precious Catholic Heritage

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8.05, ‘no one thought anything about it’.😅 Those sumptuous, worldly vestments.😅😅
And this, ladies and gents, sums up the Christus in absentia pre-Vat II Church. Which, incidentally, is why Vat II occurred.
Just think, you Catholic traditionalists: had Christ truly been present in the Church before the 1960s, Vat II would not have been necessary.
You guys were both the ecclesial Titanic, and its very own iceberg. And I can’t stop guffawing at the irony. 😄

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So after the Ascension Jesus only reappeared on the first Sunday of Advent 1970 when the New Mass came into England and Wales? If he didn’t wear a Cappa Magna he certainly never spoke English either. Why isn’t the Hebrew of amen and Alleluia translated into the vernacular as well? It’s English, Hebrew and Tudor English at the Our Father to please the Protestants

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8.05pm
Whats distasteful is that he is drawing all the attention to himself re his frock dress but not jesus himself at mass. That’s tells us more about him and his ego. Jesus will never wear these outrageous magna cappa nowadays. Attention seeker that he is but I will never call him his eminence. He spent some 30k on his frock dress which would better served at feeding the poor instead of spending 30k on his dress. That’s extreme. Time is now to stop this re ancient vestments such as magna cappa.

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Wise words from the St John Vianney, Blackpool newsletter and said openly, not behind the hand or sneakily.
“The theme of the Kingdom of Heaven continues in today’s Gospel passage. Jesus gives three examples, one of which is the merchant who deals in pearls. On finding the most precious pearl in the world, he sells all his possessions to buy it. His life is changed for ever due to that ‘pearl of great price’ – Jesus Christ. We are asked to subject everything in our lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ
– then we can avoid those vices like gossip, slander, sniping from the (hidden) side-lines and promoting disunity. Only when we keep our eyes fixed upon Him will real and lasting joy be ours to share with others!”

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8.09, I have to dampen down that good news of yours, but personal change isn’t quite the piece of cake you make it appear. Yes, submit to JC, but you’ll still fall into that litany of vices: gossip, slander, etc (Onanism. You did mention it, didn’t you?😕)
In fact, you’ll find that nothing changes…except your moral guilt levels.😢
Personally, I’m with the Wilde one, Oscar, on this: if you want rid of temptation, yield to it.
No JC necessary. 😃

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Sorry to break the bad news, but none of the Blackpool parishes are in the plum parish category, in fact quite the opposite, so experienced “pastors” won’t be queuing up for a posting there.

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Blackpool is so seedy no Catholic should live there, I suppose the hotels are all staffed by the Polish and owned by Asians and the B and Bs are all run by homosexuals. How many native practicing Catholics are there? They could worship at the Sacred Heart they don’t need all those huge barns of churches anymore.

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Even the political parties, who aren’t too fussy, have turned up their noses and for at least 10 years have refused to have their party conferences there.

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As a priest,, I have learned how to offer the Latin Mass. I found it quite moving and beautiful. I felt that, rather than having my back to the people, we were all facing towards Jerusalem together. I think the two rites can live together. However, I do agree that it tends to attract a very rigid and obnoxious cohort, who believe anything but the two rites living together.

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