The Priest: “The Forgotten Man of Vatican II” – Bishop Fellay…

The Priest: “The Forgotten Man of Vatican II” – Bishop Fellay…

“By celebrating the old Mass, I discovered what the priest is.”Image

Several times lately we have received this moving testimony from priests who are getting to know us. This short sentence sums up the essence of the profound mystery that has struck the Church:

  1. The Church has been in a crisis since Vatican II because the priesthood has been slighted. This is one of the fundamental elements of this crisis.
  2. One of the most decisive points for the Church’s restoration is and will be the priesthood. Of all the churchmen of the 20th century, Archbishop Lefebvre was probably the one who understood this most clearly.
  3. In founding the Priestly Society of Saint Pius X, he sought nothing but the restoration of the priesthood for the sake of restoring the entire Church, and
  4. to do this by re-establishing the intimate, unsuspectedly profound link that exists between the priest and the Mass.

The priest was the forgotten man of Vatican II, as Fathers of the Council have frankly admitted. In the Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, while entire chapters were dedicated to the bishops and especially to the laity, one of the great “discoveries” of Vatican II, only a few paragraphs refer to the priest, and when they do it is to subordinate him to the bishops or to the universal priesthood of the baptized.

As early as 1971, the International Theological Commission would say: “Vatican II modified the image of the priest in two regards. The Council treated of the common priesthood of all the faithful before treating of the ministerial priesthood…. Moreover, it highlighted the place of the bishop, the center of each particular Church and member of the universal college of bishops. The place of the priest in the Church became blurred.”1

Loss of identity, an uncertain place in the Church…and yet the decree Presbyterorum Ordinis gives the same definition of the priesthood as the Council of Trent! But the context is such that another idea is put forward, that of the priest as preacher, as Martin Luther would have it, and not the priest as the one who offers the Sacrifice. This would lead Fr. Olivier, a recognized expert on the subject, to say about the crisis that befell the priesthood after the Council: “The real problem is so unusual in Catholicism that one can easily understand the instinctive blindness that has allowed a perception of the cause to be avoided: the will to be faithful to two Councils that completely diverge from each other is simply impossible.” 2

To this new presentation of the priesthood, a new Mass with an intentionally Protestant savor corresponds perfectly… The conjunction of these two elements, the definition of the priesthood and the new Mass, have sufficed to provoke the most severe crisis touching the priesthood in the Church’s entire history.

Let us say it quite simply: the priesthood has been cleverly denatured. The “president” (præesse), the “preacher” (prædicare) are indeed sacerdotal roles, but they are not the essential: this belongs to the “sacrificare” (the “sacrificer”).

Insofar as the priest has not understood that his reason for being is sacrifice, that his ordination ordains him for the offering of sacrifice, the sacrifice of Our Lord on the cross, the priest will not truly know what he is or who he is. The priest without the Mass, without sacrifice, is an eye that sees not, an ear that hears not, feet that do not walk.

The Church’s enemy will never better succeed in striking her heart, for the heart of the Church, that which communicates supernatural life to the entire Mystical Body, that which diffuses life throughout the whole organism, is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. For a Mass protestantized in the name of ecumenism, according to Bugnini’s very words, a corresponding priesthood was required…

The priests we quoted at the beginning of this letter have understood this in a lightening flash when they came in contact with the traditional Mass. And then, they tell me, they are both frustrated and happy. Frustrated, because “they” hid from them this treasure, they deprived them of it. Happy, inundated with happiness at understanding the extraordinary grandeur of their vocation, the thrilling reality of their participation in the priesthood of Our Lord Jesus Christ “in persona Christi.” The priest is associated, immersed even, in the sacrificial act of Our Lord, Sovereign Priest, and he thus participates with his whole being, which he surrenders to Jesus, priest and victim, for the salvation of souls, for the redemptive act. All of this was made away with in the New Mass.

Poor priests who know not what they are!

Very dear faithful, we do not doubt that you rejoice with us when priests discover what they are. These are beautiful victories over the crisis in the Church, strongholds and citadels reconquered for Church Militant, joining ranks with the new priests Divine Providence gives us every year. This year there will be seventeen, ten in this month of June, and seven in December. In such occurrences, we see accomplished in a tangible way one of the goals of our Society, whose end is the priesthood and everything related to it.

It should be the constant concern of the superiors to maintain among the members a lively will to accomplish and to reach this end. As in every society, from time to time it is necessary to stop and examine the road traveled, to verify if and how the end of the society is being pursued, and to consider the state of its members. This work is done particularly during the course of the “Chapter,” an assembly which for us, the SSPX, meets every twelve years. It is also on this occasion that the capitulants, numbering forty, elect the Superior General, who will lead the Society, assisted by his council, for the next twelve years.

We have no need to insist upon the importance of such an event for our Society. During the six months preceding the Chapter, our Statutes command us to offer prayers to obtain from Divine Mercy His grace, His light, and the help of the Holy Ghost.

We invite you to join our prayers and sacrifices by a novena, and if you can, by a day of fasting. The novena will commence on July 2. It consists of the prayer of the Veni Creator, three invocations to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and one to St. Pius X. The day of fasting has been set for Friday, July 7.

Please receive our warmest thanks for your most touching and faithful generosity, without which the Society would not have the means to develop and to grow, a growth that is somewhat miraculous… We count on your prayers, and ask Our Lady to obtain for you by her intercession all the graces and spiritual support you need.

May God bless you abundantly.

The Feast of Pentecost 4 June 2006 + Bernard Fellay Source


1. The Priestly Ministry [French] (Paris: Cerf, 1971). 2. Daniel Olivier, The Two Faces of the Priest [French] (Paris: Fayard, 1971), p. 106. 


I came across the above letter a few days ago, and decided to publish it for blog discussion, because I can’t help wondering how many priests would actually disagree with Bishop Fellay, having bought into the “active laity” propaganda, hook, line and extraordinary minister.  What do you think? ARE priests “the forgotten men of Vatican II” or have most of them forgotten (or never really understood) the true nature and purpose of the glorious Catholic priesthood?



Comments (63)

  • Leo

    Without any doubt the crisis of the priesthood is at the centre of the crisis in the Church. I think in these coming days we would all do well to consider the immense Christian fortitude and tireless apostolic work of Archbishop Lefebvre. At an age when most people have retired, he abandoned his life to Divine Providence, for the defence of Tradition, and the formation of holy Catholic priests.

    Late in his life, in his short book entitled Spiritual Journey, the Archbishop revealed to the priests and seminarians of the Society his vision of the future the “Dream of Dakar”,that had inspired his actions:

    “…The dream was to transmit, before the progressive degradation of the priestly ideal, in all of its doctrinal purity and in all of its missionary charity, the Catholic Priesthood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, just as He conferred it on His Apostles, just as the Roman Church always transmitted it until the middle of the twentieth century.

    “How should I carry out that which appeared then to me as the sole solution to revive the Church and Christianity? It was still a dream, but there appeared to me already the need, not only to confer the authentic priesthood, to teach not only sana doctrina approved by the Church, but also to transmit the profound and unchanging spirit of the Catholic priesthood and of the Christian spirit essentially bound to the great prayer of Our Lord which his Sacrifice on the Cross expresses eternally.” – Spiritual Journey, iii

    The Society was placed under the patronage of Saint Pius X precisely because of that holy Pope’s concern for the integrity of the priesthood and the sanctity that flows from it (see p.436 of Bishop Tissier de Mallerais’s biography of the Archbishop).

    The great Saint expressed his understanding and appreciation of the irreplaceable role of the ordained priesthood in his 1903 Encyclical E Supremi:

    “Hence although all are included in the exhortation “to advance towards the perfect man, in the measure of the age of the fullness of Christ” (Ephes. iv., 3), it is addressed before all others to those who exercise the sacerdotal ministry; thus these are called another Christ, not merely by the communication of power but by reason of the imitation of His works, and they should therefore bear stamped upon themselves the image of Christ.

    “This being so, Venerable Brethren, of what nature and magnitude is the care that must be taken by you in forming the clergy to holiness! All other tasks must yield to this one. Wherefore the chief part of your diligence will be directed to governing and ordering your seminaries aright so that they may flourish equally in the soundness of their teaching and in the spotlessness of their morals. Regard your seminary as the delight of your hearts, and neglect on its behalf none of those provisions which the Council of Trent has with admirable forethought prescribed.”

    Any Bishop seriously concerned about ending the unprecedented crisis in the Church would be well advised to have a framed copy of those words facing their desk.

    I think everyone here knows what took place twenty six years ago, on June 30 1988, at Econe. On the same day that Archbishop Lefebvre, in his own words, “handed on what I have received”, in order to continue the work of traditional priestly formation, an 18 page document was published in Rome which, whatever the intent behind it and the justifications given, could not but help to undermine the sacred Catholic priesthood. The document allowed bishops to develop programs whereby deacons or appointed lay people would lead Sunday prayer services.

    Yes, twenty six years ago, while Archbishop Lefebvre was trying to provide pastors and the means of salvation for Catholic souls, Rome was providing for the absence of priests.

    Is somebody now going to mention something about “New Springtime”? Previously unimaginable, virtually universal devastation, more like.

    May 18, 2014 at 11:11 pm
    • editor


      Another academy award-winning post from you – clear as crystal.

      Your point about the timing of Archbishop Lefebvre’s action in consecrating the bishops, is very well made.

      If the fact that on the very same day, the powers-that-be in Rome were preparing openly for priestless parishes doesn’t wake up the sleeping and apathetic faithful, nothing will.

      May 19, 2014 at 8:52 am
  • Josephine


    I was really taken aback to read the end of your very interesting (as ever) comment, to think that on the very day that Archbishop Lefebvre was consecrating his four bishops to restore the priesthood, the Vatican were preparing for “the absence of priests” as you say. It really is hard to get my head round it all. I keep getting shaken on this blog and this is the latest. When I say “shaken” I really mean that I am learning all the time and that is a good thing, since knowledge is power.

    That is something to remember, that I never knew before and I won’t forget. On the very day the Archbishop was trying to provide priests for the future, “Rome was providing for the absence of priests.” It is just too incredible for words.

    May 18, 2014 at 11:25 pm
    • editor


      Knowledge IS power and we should use it to awaken our fellow Catholics to what Leo aptly describes as the “previously unimaginable, virtually universal devastation…” in the Church right now. Otherwise know [by modernists] as Leo mentions, as “the New Springtime [of Vatican II]. Otherwise known [by fully believing Catholics] as Theology for the Brain Dead…

      May 19, 2014 at 8:55 am
  • Christina

    Quite a few recent posts both on the General Discussion thread, this one, and another – I don’t remember which, have repeated a claim made many times over on the blog that is summed up by Editor in these recent words: Only in an SSPX chapel can parents be sure that their offspring will not read bulletins containing invitations to ecumenical and inter-faith events, will not be invited to volunteer to be Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, will not, in fact, be subject to ever more imaginative ways of undermining and ultimately destroying the Catholic Faith.

    My problem is with the first word ‘Only’ from which one must draw the conclusion that all the listed horrors following are to be found in any TLM celebrated outside the SSPX and under SP. This is emphatically not the case in my experience, which was considerable.

    I have been fortunate to have attended TLM in various parishes in my part of the world where nothing but unimpeachable orthodoxy was taught from the pulpit by older priests whose training in homilectics in pre-Vat.II seminaries was universally thorough. I’m afraid that not all young traditional priests nowadays seem to have had such a rigorous training in this important subject which is so essential if the priest is to teach his congregation the faith effectively. One wonderful old priest I knew well is now retired, another is dead – may he rest in peace, and another continues to be a beacon of light in his diocesan wilderness. In none of their churches were any of the above listed horrors to be found, and they were, and are, heroic. I could go on listing such priests, but you get the gist. It’s true that many exceptions exist, but it isn’t fair to generalise about this.

    Another claim which has been made recently is that ‘these groups’, i.e. FSSP, ICKSP etc., ‘would not exist without the SSPX and nor would there have been any Summorum pontificum’. Ultimately, I have no doubt, it will be seen that Archbishop Lefevre was indeed the ‘Prelate’ that Our Lady referred to, and the SSPX has been the heaven-sent ark for the survivors of the current catastrophe.

    Nevertheless the fight for tradition began, not in 1970, when the SSPX was founded, but on December 19th 1964 in Paris when the The Foederatio Internationalis Una Voce (or FIUV) was founded by Georges Cerbelaud-Salagnac in order to promote the Tridentine Mass from the Pre-Vatican II Missale Romanum (1962). The following year the Latin Mass Society was founded in England ‘to seek the preservation of the Immemorial Rites of worship and the use of Latin…….’. It was from the beginning a grim fight against heavy odds. As Cardinal Heenan was silenced, priests capitulated under the yoke of ‘obedience’ but the early LMS pioneers doggedly continued, seeking priests who had the courage to celebrate the Mass of their ordination for those few faithful who had not bought into the sham. The 1972 ‘indult’ was the fruit of their early labours, and, with all its attendant problems, this indult at least kept access to the traditional liturgy open, and its memory alive, until the SSPX was founded. Make no mistake, there would not have been so many sufficiently wedded to tradiition to move over to the SSPX chapels when they became available if the banner had not first been carried by priests and laity who often struggled against great difficulties. If you”ve ever been told you’re ‘not fit to be in the house of God’ for trying to get a pre-SP traditional Mass going, you’ll know what I mean!

    Rant over.

    May 19, 2014 at 3:07 pm
    • Margaret Mary


      I’ve heard that before about the pre-SSPX Masses and the LMS but isn’t it true to say that Rome wasn’t worried at all until the time in the 1980s when Archbishop Lefebvre consecrated his bishops – I also don’t see the bishops worrying about people attending other traditional Masses, only the Society’s. I have never heard a satisfactory explanation of why that is. I’ve been an attender at the indult Masses and SP Masses and never heard a sermon that the priest wouldn’t have given at the novus ordo Mass. I’m sure my experience is less than yours and I’m not on a mission for the SSPX but I can’t say I’ve found any of the other groups particularly impressive.

      May 19, 2014 at 7:08 pm
    • editor


      In the quote from me which you cite in your post at 3.07pm today, you will note that I do not mention preaching at all. I specifically mention parents wishing to protect their offspring from parish bulletins which advertise ecumenical events and invite them to apply to be Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion or “Eucharistic ministers” as they are now routinely called.

      I mention this fact a lot because parents of young families have said that to me. Even though the SP priests I’m thinking of here in Scotland are to be counted as the very best (who preach sound sermons, by the way – as I’ve either heard myself or been told by trusted friends) the fact is, the modernism seeps through in all sorts of ways.

      I have, on occasion, though not for quite a while now, attended the TLM offered by the then Parish Priest in the Glasgow parish where Una Voce provided Mass which was later offered by a SP priest, enthusiastic to learn the traditional Mass. This priest was noted for his sound sermons and for his concern to be as faithful as possible to Tradition – e.g. he encouraged kneeling for Communion and reception on the tongue even at his novus ordo. He sometimes wondered why the SSPX people didn’t support his Sunday Mass so I took him on a tour of the back of his church, pointing out the SCIAF box and advertising posters, the “Catholic” newspapers on sale, the notices about forthcoming ecumenical events and various diocesan announcements – Lentfest, e.g. – which he, like all the other clergy of the archdiocese is, presumably, obliged to support. The young parents I know with small children are very protective of the spiritual and moral well-being of their offspring. They don’t want them to be exposed, at all, to the modernism which might infect their souls.

      So, it’s not about some of the priests not being sound – there are a few here in Glasgow who preach as faithfully as they can, but they are all constrained at one level or another. It’s certainly not the norm to hear sound sermons. I still receive telephone calls from readers who are puzzled and annoyed at some of the rubbish they hear. But even the minority of priests who preach orthodoxy have to be careful. Nobody wants to be on the carpet in the Bishop’s office. And I have yet to hear of any diocesan priest or priest of one of the other traditional groups, who helps his congregation to make sense of the crisis in the Church by, er… mentioning it! That’s one major difference between the Society and the others. Not that it’s hammered home week in and week out but from time to time (as with the recent “canonisations”) the SSPX priests take time to explain why this or that is a problem for Catholics. Indeed, the St Peter’s Society priest here in Scotland was interviewed by the Catholic Herald a few short years ago, and took the opportunity to praise Archbishop/Cardinal O’Brien to the skies. I couldn’t believe what I was reading – and reported it in our newsletter at the time – but that’s the key issue for the non-SSPX clergy. In order to be tolerated, let alone accepted, they have to compromise in one way or another.

      As for the LMS – I do not wish to detract from their early efforts. Perhaps as you say, they were the springboard for many who later supported the SSPX but the simple fact is that the Bishops – in droves – peddled the lie that the old rite had been suppressed and – certainly here in Scotland – Una Voce (LMS equivalent), did not mount any serious challenge, always so weakly grateful for any concession, which usually took the form of a weekday Mass in some far flung parish or in a parish in a part of town where nobody wants to leave their car unattended for too long. In Glasgow, for example, the TLM was offered in districts where the Rottweillers go about in pairs. Maybe it’s different in England?

      Finally, there is no question about it, the Bishops are terrified of the SSPX while they know they can fob off the Una Voce people. And the reason they are terrified is because they know it’s about much more than the Mass – it’s about the faithful experiencing, once again, the entire ethos of the Faith. For one thing, you won’t find The Universe or the Catholic Herald – or even the Scottish Catholic Observer – on sale in any SSPX chapel. I rest my case 😀

      May 19, 2014 at 11:26 pm
      • sixupman

        Basically, LMS might be likened to the dog whining for crumbs from the bishops’ table.

        Re my earlier post concerning Rorate and fraternisation between Traditional clergy and orders, I never mentioned “compromise”. In the days of Fr. Black, it was practised on a small scale in the North of England. The hierarchy are practising, as often stated in a policy of ‘managed dissolution’, so I suppose it might come about by natural process, but why wait that long?

        May 20, 2014 at 8:26 am
      • Christina

        Editor, I’m sorry that (once again) I didn’t see this insertion when I wrote below in responses to Margaret Mary and Mikidiki.

        Thank you for that crystal clear explanation. I understand better now why there sometimes seems to be a spirit on the blog that would demean, and even ridicule the efforts and position of anyone who claims to be a traditionalist but who doesn’t attend one of the SSPX chapels. I don’t mean to say that that spirit emanates from you, but some people, who, I suspect, aren’t equipped by experience to pontificate on the matter, do become quite insulting, particularly about the LMS, the faults of which I know all too well. In the nature of things they are a very mixed bunch, from true traditionalists (who go to the ‘dark side’ – i.e. SSPX – according to a newly-ordained priest in a well-known ‘traditional’ spot) as soon as they get the chance, to others who think this Pope’s fine, and all is currently fine and dandy. What does always annoy me, as it’s so unfair, is the tendency to generalise overmuch about these things.

        About the stuff at the back of the church – to be honest I’ve never looked at it in those churches I’ve visited, as recounted below, where the priest is an occasional TLM celebrant, but I agree 100% with your views. However, again from an experience perhaps more limited than yours, in two of the churches with which I was familiar, the priests did refuse to put out anything of the sort you describe. In neither of them was there a collection for CAFOD either. Also I did know a very holy Jesuit priest (RIP) who preached a sermon about the crisis in the Church and he was subsequently suspended by his superior from all future preaching duties.

        In the end, not everyone is served by an SSPX chapel yet, so I would urge a little more encouragement of those who do their best to remain true to the Mass and tradition as far as they can in their own particular circumstances.

        May 20, 2014 at 1:09 pm
      • editor


        Thank you – that’s all good. For the record, I have, in the past, encouraged readers to attend the Una Voce-provided Masses and, in fact, they are advertised on our Mass page on the website.

        Having said that, however, I have more recently been saying (including on the blog) that things are now so bad that, given what I’ve said above about SP and other Traditional priests having to compromise/keep a low orthodox profile in one way or another to be accepted, that I think we all owe it to Archbishop Lefebvre to openly support the SSPX and, where possible, to attend the Society chapels. The crisis is now so bad that, it seems to me, the battle is now between the SSPX and Modernism, and if everyone who possibly could, attended the Society chapels, that would send an unmistakeable signal to the pope and bishops.

        That’s not in any way meant to belittle the others providing the TLM, but it is to recognise that we have moved way beyond asking for a TLM (especially on a weekday or monthly). It’s all or nothing, now, and we ought to make sure that message gets across to the hierarchy.

        But yes, as you say, not everyone is near an SSPX chapel and of course in that case, they should be encouraged to attend another TLM – but, also, they should be warned about the need to be vigilant about the diocesan trappings which they are likely to encounter, which, of course, are now highly likely to include statues and prayer cards in honour of certain “saints”. You’ll get my drift!

        May 20, 2014 at 7:03 pm
  • Christina

    Margaret Mary – it was probably me you heard it from! I saw so much of that early struggle to save the Mass, and have nothing but gratitude, respect and affection for all involved. It saddens me when SSPX people belittle their work. We are indebted to them, whether we realise it or not.

    It’s true that Rome wasn’t openly worried until Archbishop Lefebvre consecrated the bishops, but that is because Rome confidently expected the Una Voce movement to die out as those ‘attached to the previous forms’ died out. Rome was wrong, as Rome had to be, given what was at stake, but Rome, it’s true didn’t really see it until the consecrations were carried out.

    The bishops certainly do worry about people attending other traditional Masses, witness the treatment so often meted out to those priests who celebrate TLM under SP. It’s frustrating that I can’t name names and give examples, but I know you would be surprised to hear about some of them. The bishops worry about people attending the other traditional Masses because they can mendaciously dismiss the SSPX as ‘schismatic’ and ‘outside the Church’, whereas the SP Masses are the grit in the oyster and they want to get rid of them as much as they ever did. It has been noted that historically, where a bishop has installed a priest to celebrate a Sunday ‘indult Mass’ in reaction to an SSPX chapel being opened within his diocese, opposition to other priests wanting to celebrateTLM has often been increased.

    Like you, I’ve never heard a sermon at an SP Mass that the priest wouldn’t have given at a Novus Ordo Mass. But that is because those I have heard (with one exception) have been the sermons of orthodox priests who still preach about the Real Presence, death, judgement, hell and heaven, the reality of sin, the necessity of repentance, confession, etc., at ALL their Masses. One priest who has now gone to his eternal reward found his old copy of the ‘diocesan syllabus’ and used it week in and week out at his Masses. The Catechism of the Council of Trent was the basis of this syllabus and it ensured that the Catholic faithful were thoroughly catechised from the pulpit throughout the year. This is why Catholics pre-Vat.II knew the faith, and so did the fortunate little group attending the indult Mass in this good priest’s parish.

    May 19, 2014 at 9:28 pm
  • mikidiki


    Goodness me! How blessed you are to benefit from all these orthodox priests who still preach the Traditional Faith at all Masses. Every sermon my Novus Ordo PP, a Monsignor Canon, gives is loaded with ecumenical heresies and religious Indifferentism. His references to “other Christian faiths” and “the values of other religious beliefs” constantly feature in his homilies, as do the words discipleship and non judgmental love. Interestingly enough, a word which he never uses is “Catholic”!

    May 19, 2014 at 10:09 pm
  • Christina

    Do I detect a note of sarcasm, Mikidiki? Or am I being paranoid? Perhaps I should explain a little more how I have been able to benefit from ‘all these orthodox priests’.

    For more than five years I had to travel around the UK most weekends, and, as I felt an obligation to attend Mass in any rite promulgated by the Church, I always googled to find the nearest local parish to wherever I would be, and the times of Masses. I do not recall a single NO Mass, with one exception, that wasn’t exactly as you describe, and worse. Many times I have been near to tears, and in some of them I have had to walk out. Bloggers won’t be surprised to hear that some of the worst were in Scotland.

    Incidentally, shortly after my visit I heard that the exceptional priest was moved to another parish by his bishop because the parishioners ganged up to complain about him, including, unbelievably, the gripe that ‘He doesn’t let us talk in the church’.

    I was indeed blessed in that I also had access to the lists of all the places where Indult, and later SP, Masses were celebrated, so if they were near enough to my weekend venue, then I didn’t need to google and I was able to go to TLM. So it is in these churches, all of them in the north of England and in Scotland and Wales that I heard complete orthodoxy from the pulpit. The one exception was in Wales, where I heard that ‘Our Lord comes to you in His word (the readings) exactly as He comes to you in Communion’. Nobody else batted an eyelid.

    May 20, 2014 at 11:44 am
  • mikidiki

    I sincerely apologise if my earlier comment contained even a trace of sarcasm. It was not meant to; however, on re-reading it I do see that you may have a point.
    No, I was genuinely astonished that you were able to benefit from many orthodox priests. TLM Masses, at which you say they officiated, are, where I am based, merely vague memories from a yesteryear when reverential worship in recognisably holy places was the norm.
    It could be that I, living in an area where the stark choice is a NO Mass or no Mass (I.e to lapse) have become resigned to attending protestantised Masses defiled by guitars, fiddles, drums and tambourines and often interrupted by outbursts of clapping as if one were part of an audience attending a gig or a concert.
    I repeat, truly, you are blessed. Others, such as myself, are not as fortunate.
    Best wishes.

    May 20, 2014 at 2:33 pm
  • crofterlady

    Christina, I never knew that Cardinal Heenan was silenced! Can you elaborate a little?

    Also, where would I get that list you mention: the indult list for Mass times?

    May 20, 2014 at 3:16 pm
    • editor


      There are no indult Masses any more – Summorum Pontificum ended the bishops’ right to grant permissions and freed priests to offer the Mass without permission. If you check our Mass page, there is a list of Masses in Scotland provided either by Una Voce or since Summorum Pontificum. I think it’s up to date but there are phone numbers so you can contact the organisers to check.

      One of these days someone will read our website 😀

      May 20, 2014 at 7:08 pm
  • Christina

    Crofter Lady, I live in England, so the SP Masses are for England and Wales and some abroad. they are listed here and the SSPX Masses you will already know about. You’ll be surprised at how many there are. . Come away down to England for a wee holiday!

    I’m sorry that I made the remark about Cardinal Heenan being silenced, as it is rather misleading in that it seems to carry more weight than I intended. I was making something of an assumption based on the correspondence between him and Evelyn Waugh published in the latter’s book ‘A Bitter Trial’ which reveals the deep disquiet in both men about the liturgical changes underway at the end of Waugh’s life. The second book of Cardinal Heenan’s own autobiography ‘A Crown of Thorns’ is also instructive, given the Cardinal’s bleak description of the state of the Church just after Vat II contrasted with the closing paragraph of the book, referring to 1973 (one year after the imposition of NO) when he unbelievably rejoices that everything in the garden of the Church is (then) lovely.

    It is a fact that I have evidence that the LMS representative in Salford at the time of the liturgical changes had a stout ally in Bishop Holland whose letters to her encouraged her to keep up the good fight.He called her ‘the Lord’s little Swordswoman’. His letters to her ceased abruptly when the NO was imposed. That makes me assume that he was ‘silenced’, either from above or by his own ‘obedient’ conscience.

    May 21, 2014 at 10:51 pm
    • sixupman

      Salford has only one Sunday TLM [St. Chad’s, Ex Holy Name]; one Saturday a.m. [near SSPX chapel]; one Friday, Bury [centre]; the last isolated between Bury and Bolton.

      As it happens, I visited Salford Cathedral shop, yesterday, to buy two 60th. ordination anniversary cards and revisited the Cathedral. The congregation space has been reduced to that of a small parish church, whilst the ‘worship’/altar space is huge – presumably to cater for mass concelebrations and Chrism Masses. A practical reflection of the state of the Diocese? I have to add that they have not stinted on the cost of refurbishment – very posh, but sterile.

      May 22, 2014 at 8:23 am
  • Christina

    Sixupman: that particular Sunday Mass was established, by the then Bishop Kelly, probably because an SSPX chapel had been opened in Manchester. That this happens has been well noted on the blog before. Although Bishop Kelly, and later Bishop Brain, continued to grant permissions in writing for Masses in other churches in the diocese when requested, notably when the Norbertines were still present there, some people claimed to have been told that the only old-rite Mass in Salford approved by the Bishop was the one celebrated at Holy Name. It’s a pity, then, that now only people at the southern edge of the diocese have access to a Sunday Mass, and a pity, too, that an entire congregation of between 30 and 70, routinely attending a monthly Sunday Mass in the north in Samlesbury, had to migrate from Samlesbury to nearby Penwortham in the archdiocese of Liverpool, thanks to a kindly PP who allowed an ICKSP priest to say the Masses there.

    May 22, 2014 at 10:53 pm

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