Monday, January 14, 2013

Pastor Determines Latin Mass "Disturbs" Tourists

Ventura Mission, Public Domain
Edit: We just received a discouraging letter from a friend about a Latin Mass Community in the Los Angeles, California area. There has been a Mass said for the last 15 years at a Mission of San Buenaventura in Ventura California.  The parish resides in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and so is Archbishop Gomez's responsibility.  So far, Archbishop Gomez hasn't shown any interest in expanding any more Latin Mass communities and it looks like this one will be moved because, it seems to us, that the church is more important as a museum and a tourist attraction than for the purpose which it was intended.

There's no mention or apology about cultural treasures which have disappeared, or the alterations and damage which may have been done to the Church in the wake of the Second Vatican Council.

Here is part of a letter with contact information:

To the Faithful who attend and defend the Traditional / Extraordinary Form of the Mass

The Extraordinary Form Mass has been said every Sunday for 15 years at Mission San Buenaventura. Now it faces being moved, for reasons that do not make sense. Please find below the text of the notice letter that was issued without discussion or a chance to develop solutions. Included also is a summary of main points discussed at a meeting with the Mission pastor regarding his reasons for wanting to move the Mass elsewhere. The Latin Mass (TLM) community would like to make sure that Archbishop Jose Gomez knows of the situation and quickly brings it to an equitable resolution.

We ask that everyone concerned, please immediately write a short, concise letter to the Archbishop today requesting that the weekly offering of the Extraordinary Form Mass be preserved at the Mission. Please keep a copy for your records and if you would like, submit a copy to Una Voce Ventura for our files (email to info@unavoceventura.org or fax to 805-435-1654). 
Archbishop Jose Horacio Gomez, Archdiocese of Los Angeles 3424 Wilshire Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90010-2202  
Please find attached the following three documents for your reference: Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum of the Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI Given Motu Propio Letter to Bishops regarding the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum Universae Ecclesia of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei    
Leo Raab, President Una Voce Ventura
www.unavoceventura.org

41 comments:

  1. Every living generation seems to believe that it is the pinnacle of evolution. But there is always doubt. Thus, nowadays the way to reduce doubt is to delete all history that disagrees. Eliminating the Latin Mass from a church in which the Latin Mass is an historical and vital part, is a part of the ego-oriented need of the current generation of Liberals.

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    1. Wasn't it Chesterton who said something to the effect that when each generation thinks that the previous generation was foolish, humanity ends up being generation upon generation of fools?

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  2. I've been to the Latin Mass in Ventura at that Mission. One day I was notified that a Senior Priest was on his way there to celebrate Mass. He'd just had a heart attack and was supposed to be on "bed rest". I asked another Senior Priest if he would celebrate the Latin Mass and he agreed. When we arrived both of us were treated rudely by the arrogant Sacristan, who was absolutely sure he could handle Msgr. Biederman's heart condition as he celebrated Mass. He told me to get out and told the other Senior Priest he wasn't needed.

    So my first hand memories of this puppy aren't good. I left the Sacristy and spoke with the Pastor of the Mission, who promptly told the young man to get out of the Sacristy. I left Fr. O'Sullivan to celebrate Mass and too Fr. Biederman to the hospital.

    In all things, whether in Latin or English or Spanish or German, we must remember that the Mass is based on Grace and Charity, not our wants and needs.

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    1. The legislation Summorum Pontificum actually addresses the "legitimate aspiration" of Catholics in a community to have this Mass if they ask for it and constitute a stable group. Perhaps grace and charity is what the community there needs, instead of pretexts and baseless complaints?

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    2. Absolutely truly horrible that you were received that way Fr. Higgins. I do hope you attribute that to THAT person though as opposed to Latin community there.

      My wife went to a Novus Ordo Mass once and was told to leave because my child was crying (there were no cry rooms) . . . . Rudeness and lack of charity lurks EVERYWHERE.

      Tancred is absolutely correct . TLM communities are constantly reminded to be ʻcharitableʻ. . . . They are often though the very LAST to receive charity from those entrusted with their care. Rather, they are pigeoned holed as ʻradicalʻ,ʻantiquatedʻ and never viewed as folks who love their Church.

      Is Fr. Biederman OK now?

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  3. I, too, have been to that lovely mision church for the ancient rite. The malice shown by some to the rite that nourished the Church for nearly twenty centuries never ceases to amaze me.

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    1. Trust me.... malice is not exclusive to those who have a love of the TLM. JP II and Benedict XVI have both issued motu proprios regarding the obligation of bishops to make the TLM generously available to groups of Catholics. If Catholics can have guitar masses, puppet masses during the NV celebrations then lets give the TLM folks an equal break.

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  4. Sad news. My family and I attend the TLM there when we visit from Hawaii. It is a haven for us and allows us to go to a TLM recognized by the Diocese as opposed to any one of the many ʻindependent chapelsʻ also available in the area (Some of which do not fulfill Sunday obligations, etc.)

    Lastly, as someone who attends a TLM that has very little singing and chanting, I fell in love with the choir at San Buenaventura. Here is a short clip of some of it from 3rd Christmas Mass back in 2010. The music starts around the 12 second mark.

    http://vimeo.com/34275329

    Pax tecum

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  5. This is just tragic. Here in the LA Archdiocese, you can count the number of TLM's on one hand. As aged parent notes, the hatred of the Mass Immemorial is just unbelievable. Ask for a interfaith service, liturgical dancing and the like and you get it. Ask for the TLM and you get the horns. So very sad. But that is modernist thinking, always looking to introduce novelties and scorning tradition.

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  6. Gomez is another social justice bishop who believes in "la Raza unida".

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  7. Is there an SSPX, independent, or sede chapel close? Since pastors and bishops think they're running a business instead of saving souls, I'd take my BUSINESS elsewhere.

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    1. They're not talking about abolishing the Indult here, they're talking about moving it to another location. I don't know about you, but I'm generally "disturbed" and disedified when I see a Novus Ordo Mass said at a historic location like this. Most NO Liturgies have all kinds of abuses, but I digress.

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    2. For a wonderfully fluff-free pre-1962 Mass go to: Our Lady Help of Christians satellite site at Ted Mayr Mortuary Chapel Sundays @ 1PM in Ventura, also at St Patrick Mission at Northridge Women's Club on Lassen Rd. in Northridge, Mass @ 9:30AM. The settings may not be ideal, but the priests say the Mass in the most reverent way I've ever seen.

      FYI: Msgr. Perez is considered independent, but was elevated to Msgr. by a fully legitimate bishop, (Bishop Joseph in an Indian diocese) so I think technically his faculties were restored, even though he has no connection to the LA or OC Dioceses.

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  8. Please note that the letter "quoted" here contains nothing of the letter the good and holy Pastor actually sent, and only the text that was on both sides of the email. I find it discouraging that the Pastor is being berated on numerous comboxes now without his voice being heard. I encourage the original poster to actually attach the text of the Pastor's letter.

    Thank you

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    1. Is there some way that he's been misrepresented that you think including his letter would contradict any information presented here?

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    2. Yes, quite. There was absolutely no mention of cancelling the Mass, only moving it for a number of reasons that would be beneficial to both the Mission and the TLM community in the area.

      There is much more to this situation on both sides than is proper for general internet consumption. I understand there are a lot of emotions around this issue, and I would encourage charity from all.

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    3. I don't believe anyone here or in the article said anything about canceling the Mass, but we did talk about uprooting an existing group within the MIssion Parish which has a right to hear this Mass said in their home parish.

      You don't seem to get that part, and you seem even less interested in the pastoral dimensions of this. It actually sounds, quite, unwelcoming and haughty.

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  9. Art. 5 § 1 In parishes, where there is a group of faithful who stably adhere to the earlier liturgical tradition, the pastor should willingly accept their requests to celebrate the Mass according to the rite of the Roman Missal published in 1962, and ensure that the welfare of these faithful harmonises with the ordinary pastoral care of the parish, under the guidance of the bishop in accordance with canon 392, avoiding discord and favouring the unity of the whole Church.

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  10. Art. 7 If a group of lay faithful, as mentioned in art. 5 § 1, has not obtained satisfaction to their requests from the pastor, they should inform the diocesan bishop. The bishop is strongly requested to satisfy their wishes. If he does not want to arrange for such celebration to take place, the matter should be referred to the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei”.

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  11. As explained in the above articles of Summorum Pontificum, Fr. Elewaut is in opposition to the command of the Pope. He feels confident to do it, but places Archbishop Gomez in a pickle for the Opus Dei is supposed to obey the Pope

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  12. Fr. Elewaut flat out suspended the Sacred Triduum which is held in Latin, despite the mant gifts and increased Holiness it brings to the Mission. Once again he goes against the wishes of Pope Benedict XVI who legislated in Universae Ecclesiae: 33. If there is a qualified priest, a coetus fidelium (“group of faithful”), which follows the older liturgical tradition, can also celebrate the Sacred Triduum in the forma extraordinaria. When there is no church or oratory designated exclusively for such celebrations, the parish priest or Ordinary, in agreement with the qualified priest, should find some arrangement favourable to the good of souls

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  13. I don't think I'd want to financially support this diocese after all this. That's why I would consider going elsewhere. It's quite clear that something isn't right. It seems that the pastor, or the bishop, or both are uncomfortable with the idea of someone strolling into this church and accidentally being exposed to the TLM. The horror! Instead of using this as an opportunity to teach people what the mass should look and sound like, they are using it as an opportunity to move the mass somewhere else, and I'm sure it's going to be a much more convenient place and time for everyone. Probably in some questionable part of town around 1pm. There's no sense in fighting with the diocese. Just go elsewhere.

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  14. Actually the new arrangement may yield a earlier and more attended time spot in a more convenient part of town.

    And as for the suspension of the Triduum and the applicable parts of Summorum Pontificum, nowhere does it state that the Pastor must bend immediately to the wills of a small part of the flock in detriment to the Parish as a whole. I would argue he is in agreement with SP as he is finding options that are good for the whole of the community

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    1. If there's a more convenient location and time for allowing what was never prescribed in the first place, then found it, but don't uproot an existing community for frankly spurious and petty reasons.

      Apparently, the pastor didn't think very clearly before he drew up his pretexts for creating chaos in people's lives by uprooting them from a beautiful location which is far and away more suited to the Immemorial Mass of All Ages than is the Rite of Msgr. Annibale Bugnini.

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    2. Also, not having a parish with a pastor sympathetic to tradition creates a tension between what ought to be done and where the pastor feels he's being generous.

      For years, Catholics have been stuffed in crypts, out of the way and dangerous neighborhoods to hear the Mass of their ancestors.

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  15. It doesn't matter if it's betterir worse. The point is that this is another display of traditional Catholics being completely disregarded, disrespected, and disenfranchised by both a bishop and a pastor. These parishioners were kind enough to support the Immemorial Rite of Mass in a church that was built for that Mass.

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  16. Typical traddies: Fancying themselves the "better" Catholics and oh-so-persecuted martyrs, banding in their insular groups to complain about (legitimate) alternative opinions, and resisting change ipso facto.

    First, most of the people who go to that mass AREN'T EVEN PARISHIONERS (geographical or registered)! They (the people, not the mass) contribute nothing to the parish lest they be made impure by the lesser, ordinary form catholics. There's like one guy who's tried, braving the "spirit of VII" musical cacophony to add Gregorian chant to the Christmas and Easter liturgies... one guy. Is anyone else using their time/talent/treasure to help the rest of the parish with desperately needed catechesis, liturgy, church maintenance, outreach organization, etc??? Save maybe a sparse few, NO. Under the terrible Una Voce Ventura leadership (primarily the irascible council members, not the President whom I respect), they have been nothing but ingrates and squatters for YEARS.

    Second, the move could be SUCH a blessing if the traddies would take two seconds to step outside of their change-is-bad martyr complex. The mass currently is at a terrible time (1:30PM) which deters many people (especially families with children) from attending. Since all the other masses are far better attended than the TLM, we would never get an earlier slot. BUT, that is a possibility with a move! So not only would we likely find a more amicable pastor and parish, we could get a time slot that opens it up to more people. But, wait, this is traddieland where pragmatism, (legitimate) pluralism, and rationality have been abolished...

    (My loathing is for traddies, not the tradition as I have been attending the extraordinary form for years. Their lack of charity and rationality would have pushed me into atheism were it not for the learned scholars of the church proving you don't have to be a close-minded jerk or simpleton to be a person of faith)

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    1. Nice to see such 'tolerance' in action. Check out the plank in your eye first. If this is the kind of attitude at the Mission now, I'd be happy to take my family and weekly donations elsewhere.

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    2. Not sure that anyone here has said they were "better" Catholics, but rant on. If you don't actually address any of the points, but start off with offensive non-sequitors, I'm sure you'll persuade a lot of people of whatever idea you have.

      The Immemorial Mass has been in place for 15 years at the Ventura Mission and had been celebrated there since before the Council for centuries. It's where people are accustomed to going and now it's being yanked from a historical setting which is most suited to its celebration. It was originally put there because there was a stable group that asked for it. Arguably, it should be put at a more suitable time, regardless of how many people attend the Bugnine Liturgy at he other times.

      Maybe your "loathing" for people you don't seem to understand very well transmits itself into a lack of sympathy for their situation?

      Maybe if you "Nervousodeninarians" (I know you claim to attend the Immemorial Mass of All Ages) didn't have such a martyr complex, you'd be willing to allow the Catholics to have a Mass which their ancestors and spiritual forebears have been worshipping at since the foundation of the Church?

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    3. Thanks for proving my point, tancred, about traddie charity. Accusing a person of lying about their mass attendance and using a pejorative for those who use the ordinary form of the holy mass of the universal church... nice. Just because you don't "say" you think you're a better catholic, no person outside of a traddie echo chamber would believe you.

      I do NOT tolerate stupid. It's stupid to fight change for the sake of fighting change. It's stupid to absolve the TLM leadership for their hand in the acrimony just because they're on "your side." It's stupid to pretend that there is no wisdom outside of über-traditional catholic circles of group think. THAT is my experience and that is the source of my angst.

      And, yes, I give individuals much benefit of the doubt because they aren't used to having their opinions challenged. But this traddie culture is an awful, awful thing for which I will NEVER be charitable or soften my words. When something has brought you to the darkest point in your spiritual life, you'd have trouble being delicate, too.)

      I cried the first time I attended mass there and heard chant. I love the Extraordinary form and the reverence for the Eucharist that doesn't exist in many other places in this county. But the people are... well, just like the people in this combox. Thank goodness I learned that my Christianity is not dependent on the people, but Christ.

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    4. You're not very well informed about the parish or the individuals who attend it and are decidedly more interested in maligning a group of people than you are in presenting your case.

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    5. This is why I hate trad communities in Novus Ordo parishes. They are hotbeds for fights and reactions like this. You seemly made no effort to accommodate the TLM in your NO parish in the first place. Why not replace one of the Novus Ordo morning Masses with a TLM and integrate it more fully into the parish as a whole? It would be only fair to share the prime time slots, making it conveniently available to everyone and not just the core group of traditional catholics. You don't make an effort, yet you're angry that no one contributes to the parish. They likely have a lot of work to do each Sunday setting up the altar and taking it down at the end. Unbelievable.

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  17. @Tancred. It seems you may be significantly more misinformed of the situation at hand, and ironically, more interested in maligning a person who has serious and valid issues with the community of Catholics faithful to the Extraordinary Form. I was in attendance at that meeting where the letter was presented, an involved Parishoner, and have been a regular attendee of that Mass for a few years now. I can for certain say that the poster you are maligning is quite on target...

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    1. The only thing I really believe is that he/she hates a group of people he/she defines as "tradies".

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  18. "Traddies" (humans who are Roman Catholics that love the old Mass) are treated like filthy pariahs, and subjected to the insult and injury time and time again. At least they're in good company with Our Lord. Funny how defending oneself and one's Faith is considered "mean".

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  19. It sounds like it is time to take our wallets, our energy and our youth where it is more appreciated.. out of the diocese entirely, if necessary, as it seems it is.

    To accuse those of us who have been part of this licit, growing Traditional Catholic Community by an anonymous coward of being "squatters", "ingrates" and of "contributing nothing" proves the typically toxic attitude that we have had to endure for years as Trads.

    It is also a lie that the Mass wasn't well attended, especially considering the very inconvenient time as mentioned.

    Maybe someone can publish a list of other Latin Masses in the area, outside the diocese if that is where God leads us.

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  20. Future of the Extraordinary Form Latin Mass at the Mission. News update posted on the Una Voce Ventura website (unavoceventura.org)
    http://www.unavoceventura.org/news/news_mission_san_buenaventura_mass_set_to_end.html

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    1. I couldn't help but be amused by the line: "The Mission sanctuary is rather confined and most all liturgical furnishings and decorations have to be altered for every Extraordinary Form Mass. This has become an unnecessary strain on the historical furnishings and parish liturgical life. Secondly, the Mission is a place of pilgrimage and tourist visitation which is hindered by the additional Sunday Mass; visitors often have a limited opportunity to tour the Mission and have expressed reservation on touring the church during Holy Mass."

      For one thing, it's a pretext, but how is a presider's chair in the middle of the sanctuary, historical? The use of a presider's chair in the center of the sanctuary is a recent innovation and doesn't have much of a claim to history.

      The solution to the extra Mass is to cut out one of the less well-attended and novel NO Liturgies.

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  21. I would like to say, briefly and simply, that I am a Catholic, the same as everyone here who has commented is Catholic. Though I find the New Mass repulsive, at least in the sense of the way it is ordinarily found in Catholic parishes around the world (with exceptions, of course), I do not think the word "Trad" or "traddie" should apply to anyone who wishes to worship in a venerable Rite of the Church which in all its essentials dates from the time Christ walked the earth. I am not a Trad; I am a Catholic.

    Having said that, where did the divide between us begin? Or, as the children say, "who started it??" As one who has lived through the chaos of the 1960s, a chaos in both the world and the Church, I can answer that question, I believe, very simply. The divide occurred when certain high-ranking Churchmen, whose motivations were either sincere, vile and/or stupid, decided to close the door on its past. With that one stroke Catholics with twenty centuries of history behind them who were stunned at what happened were suddenly labelled "Trads", and those who created the chaos suddenly became the Good Guys.

    That is how those who wanted to stay connected with their historical, Christ-give past were labelled. And they have been so labelled by many ever since.

    But there really is only one personage on earth with the Divinely-instituted authority to give a label to certain factions of Catholics. And in recent years that Authority did give a name to certain kinds of Catholics, those who willy-nilly broke with their past. That Authority was Pope Saint Pius X, and the name he gave these people was: Modernist.

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  22. Latin Mass disturbs the tourists ,it disturbs Satan even more.

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  23. Why was 'Ecclesia Dei' written and created knowing full well Quo Primum existed centuries before?
    It was always odd to me,as if the Vatican in 1988 didn't know their own history or theology.

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