New Mass “Evil”? Then Why Did Sr Lucia Attend?

New Mass “Evil”? Then Why Did Sr Lucia Attend?

Editor writes… 

The identity of both the woman correspondent and the priest who replied to her questions about the Novus Ordo Missae (New Order of Mass) are withheld, simply because I’ve not asked permission to publish this letter here.  The woman is a long time supporter of Catholic Truth in Ireland, but she is not online, and I’ve no contact at all with the priest.  The interest for us here is simply the points made about the liturgy with the additional interesting point about Sr Lucia.  The identities of the correspondents is irrelevant.

Surely, the argument goes, if Sr Lucia attended the new Mass throughout her Religious Life, there can be nothing wrong with it. Father had described the new Mass as “evil” in a published article and it is this which caused our reader to challenge him, and make the point about Sr Lucia.  Read the letter below, and share your thoughts…

Letter from a priest of the Society of St Pius X (SSPX) to a Catholic Truth reader, 2005. 

Dear Mrs…

I thank you for your letter in which you question some of [my] opinions expressed on the Novus Ordo Mass. Your reflections are interesting ones indeed, and I believe that they can help us to grapple more precisely with the whole problem of conscience that the new order of Mass poses to Catholics.

We both agree that the New Mass is not what it ought to be, or – as you put it – less perfect. We also both agree that not all celebrants of the New Mass make a mockery of it, as do evil celebrants who use the Mass for sacrilegious or blasphemous purposes.

However, I believe that our principal difference of opinion concerns the term “evil”. You are speaking of evil as a moral characteristic of a person. In this sense it most certainly does not apply to those who strive to celebrate the New Mass with respect and reverence, who still believe in the Real Presence and who try to make it a prayer as best they can. They are well intentioned, but misled.

I am speaking of evil as descriptive of a human action, not of the person who does it. Here it has the philosophical meaning of “evil”, namely the absence of the good that is due. An example in the physical order is the prescribing of a medication that is harmful, and does not restore health as it ought to do. An example in the moral order is Robin Hood style charity – stealing from some persons in order to give to others. There is no justice in such behavior, and it lacks the good that is necessary for the practice of virtue, for we cannot practice charity with other people’s goods.

The same applies to the Liturgy. Communion in the Hand is an evil, in the circumstances of the present time, for the action of distributing Holy Communion in this fashion lacks the respect and reverence that is due to Our Lord really present in the Blessed Sacrament, regardless of the Faith or good intentions of those who might administer it.

This can also be said of all the novelties and omissions in the ceremonies of the New Mass, and of the New Mass as a whole. It corrupts and undermines the Faith for it does not adequately express the Church’s Faith in the fact that the Holy Mass is a true and propitiatory sacrifice. Furthermore, this complete expression of the Faith is essential to the Mass as a liturgical act. For it is a symbolic act, the very nature of which is to express completely the Church’s Faith on this question. The elimination of this profession of Faith in the new rite, given the protestant revolt of the 16th century, is a very grave absence, for at the very least it makes the faithful believe that this aspect of the Mass is no longer important. It is the absence of a good that is due to the Mass.

The gravity of these omissions can be understood only when all the aspects of the true Mass that are eliminated in the New Mass are put together side by side: e.g. doing away with genuflections and kneeling, with altar stones and altar cloths, with Latin and the silent Canon, with the holding together and purification of the priest’s fingers, with the limitation of touching the sacred vessels and hosts to the priest only, with the double Confiteor, with the Offertory prayers, with prayers mentioning such things as sin, judgment, Hell, Purgatory, the purification of the soul, and detachment from this earth. One could go on and on. It is when the whole picture is put together that the New Mass can be clearly seen to be radically defective in those things that are essential to the Mass. It is consequently evil, regardless of the good intentions of the celebrants and assistants.

This is the reason why no Catholic who is aware of all these defects in the New Mass has a right to assist at it, even to satisfy his Sunday obligation. To do so would be to participate in an evil act, one that is destroying the Church and the Faith. Since the end does not justify the means, this is never permissible. Furthermore, a person cannot be bound to do something evil in virtue of a precept of the Church. Catholics ought not to assist at Sunday Mass in their parishes on the justification that it is a reverently celebrated New Mass. It is still lacking the profession of Faith essential to the Mass. It is still evil, harmful and destructive to the Church. The presence of a few traditionally minded Catholics is not going to make any difference to this, since the changes were never wanted by the faithful in the first place, but were [imposed] from above. Attending the New Mass cannot possibly make something that is bad become good.

You ask why Sister Lucia attended the New Mass until her death. She had the problem of conscience of so many religious, bound by the vow of obedience to do what their superiors tell them. Although, objectively speaking, a person in such circumstances should refuse to assist at the New Mass, we certainly understand Sister Lucia’s predicament, especially given the special revelations that she had received. She understood that, for one who receives such special graces, obedience is the only means to sanctification, and to avoiding illusion and diabolical deception. Hence her preference for obedience above everything else. After all, she was not a theologian, the Masses celebrated in her convent were very respectful, and the question of the Mass was not her concern, but rather living the message of Our Lady of Fatima – namely prayer and penance.

It is certainly true that the evil that has come upon the Church since Vatican II is a chastisement for the absence of the supernatural spirit and for the failure to respond to the message of Fatima. However, this is not a reason for us to cooperate with it in any way, as does a person who goes to the New Mass, albeit unwillingly. Our duty is to stand up against the evil and refuse to compromise with it.

I am grateful to you for your words of appreciation for the Society of Saint Pius X, and our place in the combat. I hope, though, that you will also see the wisdom in the solid guidance given to us by Archbishop Lefebvre on this question.

Yours faithfully in the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts,


Comments (22)

  • Andrew Q

    Comment deleted.

    The topic is the Mass, not any theory about Sr Lucia. Stick to the topic.

    Thank you – Ed.

    January 2, 2023 at 12:30 am
    • Andrew Q

      Dear Editor

      It was a plausible reason why it appeared “she” endorsed the V2 Mass.

      Convicted of CTS thought crime on the first day of the year!

      January 2, 2023 at 1:05 am
      • editor


        If you want me to post a thread on that ridiculous theory, all you have to do is ask. There’s nothing “plausible” about it. But please do not try to redirect a topic to one of your own preference when I have put work into preparing a particular topic. Nothing to do with “thought crime” – don’t be silly.

        Do you agree with the priest’s use of the term “evil” to describe the new Mass?

        January 2, 2023 at 8:41 am
  • Fidelis

    Using the proper meaning of “evil”, as the priest says, we have to admit that yes, the new Mass falls well short of the good we expect from the Mass. They didn’t just add a new saint to the Mass or other minor alteration, they started from scratch to create a new Mass, explicitly to please Protestants, that was the stated aim, so definitely, the new Mass lacks what we expect in the Mass and so is “evil”.

    I’m glad the priest made the distinction between the good priests and people who attend it, though, they can’t be called evil, just, as the priest says, “misled”. I know plenty who are misled and it’s not easy to convince them that the new Mass is of itself evil.

    It’s very likely that Sr Lucia wasn’t even aware of the Mass debate. The Carmelites are strictly enclosed and since their Mass would have been respectful, the nuns wouldn’t have questioned the change. Also, even is they didn’t like it, their vow of obedience means they had to accept it, it doesn’t mean they approved of it.

    January 2, 2023 at 10:16 am
    • Margaret Mary


      It cannot be disputed that we are not experiencing the good that we have a right to expect from the Church in any way at this point in history, especially the Mass. We have a dreadful pope, we have too many bad priests and bishops and the New Mass is far from what it should be. That is not surprising when you think it was deliberately designed to take out the prayers, genuflections etc that make it unacceptable to Protestants. So, it is accurate enough to call it “evil”. The problem is, people think of “evil” as meaning murderers, terrorists they get furious when applied to the Mass.

      What I find interesting is that the creators of the New Mass had a good motive, to want to bring Protestants to the Church but then so did Martin Luther. Luther used the bible to change the Church and instead caused schism, but Bugnini and his helpers used the Mass and we see the destruction everywhere.

      January 2, 2023 at 11:18 am
    • Faith of Our Fathers

      Fidelis i go to the N.O. Mass as well as the T.Latin Mass and most certainly prefer the T.L.M. but Mr Toal along with Roche and Bergoglio, said if i want to go to Mass on Sunday i have to go to a N.O. one .As for the N.O. Mass being changed to suit Protestants your 100% correct and now we await Bergoglios new assault on the T.L.M. I well remember when the New Mass was introduced ,now my memory may not be exact but NONE of us at the time were exactly over the Moon with it . Am sure that one of the first things changed was the Our Father ( i stand to be corrected as it was 1968 ) but many of us said then that it was The Protestant version being introduced into the Mass . I have of course had this more or less discussion before but i do want to go to Sunday Mass and our Priest would if He could have a T.L.Mass but it was stopped by Mr Toal just after T.C. I also believe that our Priest if He did start the Sunday T.L.Mass would be cancelled and i dont wish that. Are we who attend the T.L.Mass being treated badly . Yes we know without a doubt we are which is why we know that the T.L.Mass is the one True Mass of Ages . M. Mary, when Bergoglio gratefully took that Horrible Statue of Luther off of the Lutherans, Bergoglio really showed us Catholics that He certainly was not one of us.

      January 2, 2023 at 6:20 pm
  • Antoine Bisset

    New Year wishes for a happy and holy year.
    I think that the comments of the priest are broadly correct. I studied the documents of Vatican II under the guidance of a theologian back in the 60s. I do not recall that there was ever any notion that the spiritual power of the Mass should be reduced, but rather that the embrace of the Church should reach further and be seen to be more “accessible” to the Laity.
    What has happened since has weakened or dissolved much of the strength of the Church. Leadership, the “rock” on which the Church stands, has become weak and vacillating, wavering in the winds of “woke”. The faithful have been misled insofar as key elements of the Faith have been slurred and sidelined in the face of modernity, instead of becoming even stronger bastions of the Church’s teaching.

    January 2, 2023 at 10:50 am
    • Fidelis

      Antoine Bisset,

      I agree with you about the faithful being misled and the Church becoming weaker instead of stronger “in the face of modernity”. It’s incredible, since Jesus warned us about the battle against the worldliness of society. We need the true Mass more than ever now.

      January 2, 2023 at 11:13 am
  • Bernie

    It took years for the Mass debate to really take off and unless Sr Lucia was reading the Catholic press in her convent, she wouldn’t have known anything about it. Enclosed religious, like the Poor Clares, Benedictines and Carmelites, were dependent on their superiors for information about what was going on in the world and the Church so there would have been no reason for Sr Lucy to worry about the Mass. She was a peasant child, remember and had to learn to read on Our Lady’s instructions, so she probably had a basic literary ability. I have three Carmelite nun friends and when I visit them I am always taken aback at the things they don’t know that we would all take for granted.

    January 2, 2023 at 11:24 am
    • editor


      I, too, am a fairly regular visitor to Carmel to see a Sister who is a friend from my youth, and I have the same experience. When I mention some of the more shocking items of news about Pope Francis, for example, I find a blank look in return, genuine puzzlement. So, it is not at all a foregone conclusion that Sr Lucia would have known about the Mass controversy. Goodness, I didn’t know it myself, not for a lot of years, since I was not in the habit of reading the Catholic newspapers and, like most people, I went along with the Vatican II changes assuming them to be legitimate. And I was living right here out in the world! Heavens, to this day there are people who have no idea that there is any controversy surrounding the new Mass. Incredible as it seems to us, that is a fact.

      Of course, given the content of the Third Secret, Sr Lucia probably knew quite a bit about the crisis to come, reaching to the top of the Church etc, but in terms of her state of life, she had to obey her superiors and – as the letter states – given that the convent Masses would have been respectful etc. she had to do as she was told and attend.

      January 2, 2023 at 12:31 pm
  • editor

    One thing I meant to highlight earlier (but got distracted!) – the SSPX priest author of the introductory letter makes the depressingly common mistake of reducing the Fatima Message to “prayer and penance”. This is routine now, in diocesan parishes and at diocesan Fatima events, so it is dispiriting to find it being repeated from the pen/keyboard of a so-called traditional priest.

    That message – of the need for prayer and penance – is 2,000 years old. From the beginning, Christians have been exhorted to pray and do penance so there was no need for God to send His Mother to Fatima in 1917 to teach us that basic truth. It’s like going to your doctor with a serious health issue only to find him telling you to remember to eat your greens every day. DUH!

    It is puzzling that so many priests avoid highlighting the key parts of the Fatima Message which explain Our Lady’s appearances to the three children in Portugal, not least the warning about the spread of Communism across the world, and the essential request for the Consecration of Russia. Check out the full Message of Fatima here and would any priest reading this, gerragrip (with all due respect of course). We know that prayer and penance are important, but Our Lady did NOT appear at Fatima, simply to remind us of that, so why limit your references to the apparitions to that one element?

    January 2, 2023 at 12:24 pm
    • Josephine


      Good point – I have noticed that as well, the only thing mentioned by priests when speaking of Fatima is the call to prayer and penance. If you’re lucky, there might be a mention of the Five First Saturdays but never the Pope’s duty to command the Bishops to join with him in consecrating Russia, by name.

      January 2, 2023 at 8:38 pm
  • Michael

    Dear Friends

    A happy and blessed new year to everyone.

    I totally agree with Fr’s detailed remarks in terms of the objective nature of the changes and the subsequent abuses that resulted from it.

    These continuous and persistent efforts to eradicate the TLM are another manifestation of such abuses.

    The internal enemies of the faith with the Church understand full well that the Liturgical changes were deliberately and heavily Protestantised and emptied of their supernatural content and efficacy , in order to validate the Modernist beliefs and perceptions of conforming the teachings and practices of the true Catholic faith to the world as opposed to the world conforming itself to the Catholic faith and ultimately Christ himself as Lord and Sovereign of all created reality visible and invisible.

    Fr is correct to point out that the evils which have befallen the Church are a chastisement for the abandonment of the supernatural Catholic faith and practices of which the TLM which is the Church’s most beautiful expression of the mystery and reality of the Trinity, the Incarnation and the Paschal Mystery etc etc.

    The amount of fellow Catholics l know who think the Mass is merely a group sharing moment where we pray and share bread and wine??? is more than l would wish. The effects of this are further reflected in their view of Catholic doctrinal and moral teaching.

    It’s symptomatic of altering the lex orandi, lex credendi and the lex vivendi. What we have now are Roman Protestants (oxymoron l know) but true none the less.

    For myself I think that a complete return to pre Vatican II liturgical changes are required. Until then the Faith and the Church will continue to be vociferously assaulted and abused by the evil one and his earthly minions.

    Every blessing

    Michael 🙏

    January 2, 2023 at 2:00 pm
  • RCAVictor

    I don’t have the theological chops to post an opinion on whether or not the Novus Ordo is “evil.” It is obviously gravely deficient in presenting Catholic theology and enacting Catholic piety. However, if we are going to call this entire liturgy “evil,” doesn’t that also apply to the Consecration that occurs in it? I don’t see how we can claim that.

    January 2, 2023 at 2:51 pm
    • editor

      RCA Victor.

      You are so right – we cannot claim that the Consecration is evil (assuming its validity). But – drum roll – the Consecration is not “the Mass”.

      I often find Catholics excusing their continuing attendance at, or return to, the novus ordo by saying that they “have” to receive Our Lord in Holy Communion, they cannot deprive themselves of the Eucharist.

      Yet, the Church does not require us to receive Holy Communion – except once a year, “at Easter or thereabouts”, part of our “Easter Duties”; the obligation is to attend Mass on Sundays, not to receive Holy Communion every Sunday.

      Notwithstanding the valid Consecration, then, the Mass itself – as we know is true of the novus ordo – may “depart from Catholic Theology of the Mass in whole and in part”, to quote the Ottaviani Intervention.

      It is the “absence of the good that we have a right to expect” (St Thomas Aquinas) which makes it “evil”. And for the record, the same would be true of any Consecration in which the priest changed the words or did anything else to invalidate it. We have a right to expect a validly effected Consecration – and anything less would make it “evil”.

      January 2, 2023 at 5:17 pm
  • Michael 🙏

    RCA Victor

    You are absolutely correct in reminding this discussion that although the new rite is gravely deficient in terms of doctrinal and theological content and praxis and strongly deviates in terms of organic liturgical development in accordance with Sacred Tradition the consecration is valid.

    Every blessing

    Michael 🙏

    January 2, 2023 at 3:29 pm
  • Athanasius

    I think in general the priest hits the nail on the head regarding the description of the New Mass as “evil”. Anything which detracts from the faith handed down, well intentioned or not, is, by default, evil. If it’s not good – and we all know that the New Mass is not good – then it’s bad. And if it’s bad, it’s an evil.

    The devil is a very shrewd operator who knows that if he shows himself in all his ugliness then people will flee from him. So, what does he do? Well, he disguises himself, as St. Paul warns us, as an angel of light in order to lead the unwary astray. Hence the old adage “the road to hell is paved with good intentions”.

    This is not to say that those involved in the fabrication of the New Mass were actually well intentioned. Fr. Annibale Bugnini, for example, the chief liturgist behind the New Mass, declared in a 1965 interview with L’Osservatore Romano: “We must strip from our Catholic prayers and from the Catholic liturgy everything which can be the shadow of a stumbling block for our separated brethren, that is, for the Protestants.”

    Here, in these words, is a clear and evil intent expressed by Fr. Bugnini to suppress the Catholic theology of the Mass in order to appease heretics and their heretical beliefs. In another interview in 1974 he felt sufficiently cocky to declare his New Mass “a conquest of the Catholic Church”.

    Professor Dietrich von Hildebrand lamented Bugnini’s achievement thus: “Truly, if one of the devils in C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters had been entrusted with the ruin of the liturgy he could not have done it better.

    Professor von Hildebrand’s words are vindicated in the “Ottaviani Intervention”, that famous critique of the New Mass presented to Paul VI by Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci as spokesmen for a multitude of concerned prelates, liturgists and theologians, who wrote in conclusion of their study: “The New Mass represents as a whole and in its individual parts a grave departure from the Catholic theology of the Mass as codified in Session XXIII of the Council of Trent…”

    There was even confirmation of the evil of the New Mass from an honest Protestant observer. Professor Peter L. Berger, a Lutheran sociologist, declared “If a thoroughly malicious sociologist, bent on injuring the Catholic community as much as possible had been an adviser to the Church, he could hardly have done a better job.”

    It is therefore fair to state that evil intent gave rise to the New Mass. Indeed, it was fabricated even in defiance of Pope John XXIII and the Council, who decreed that the essential parts of the Mass remain in Latin.

    In fact, the New Mass of Bugnini is not new at all, it is lifted directly from the blueprint of apostate Archbishop Thomas Cranmer’s XVI century “Common Book of Prayer”. The similarities between the Protestant meal service and Bugnini’s New Mass are striking. The late Michael Davies admirably demonstrated this in his book “Cranmer’s Godly Order”.

    When considered together with subsequent other illicit impositions, such as Communion in the hand while standing, altar girls, women lay readers, offertory procession, extraordinary ministers of holy communion and a suppression of the term “Holy Sacrifice” in favour of “celebration of the Eucharist”, it is evident that a malign influence is at work within the Church.

    Martin Luther is anecdotally reported to have said “destroy the Mass and you will destroy the Catholic Church”. Whether he spoke these words or not is immaterial because they’re true. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass stands at the very heart of our faith and we have sorrowfully witnessed these past 50 years how Bugnini’s attack on this liturgical heart of Catholicism has resulted in disaster for the Church.

    Vocations to the priesthood and religious life have plummeted to such an extent that seminaries and religious houses have closed in their thousands, as have parishes all around the world. Only the Traditional institutions faithful to the old Mass are showing a contrary trend as multitudes of disillusioned younger people turn back to the faith of their fathers.

    For the older generation, sadly, blind obedience is their undoing. As Archbishop Lefebvre once observed in their regard “Satan’s masterstroke has been to sow disobedience through obedience”.
    It’s very difficult for the older generation to disobey Popes and bishops when the latter stray from the truth because they were accustomed to a sound hierarchy up to Vatican II. For them, it is inconceivable that the Catholic hierarchy of the past 50 or 60 years has gone rogue, even when they witness abominations such as the syncretist gathering at Assisi under John Paul II and the Pachamama scandal of Pope Francis, to name but two of the many outrages against divinely revealed truth.

    But we have to accept what our eyes tell us. Our Lord admonished us to judge by fruits and the fruits of the New Mass and new doctrines of Vatican II are rotten to their very core. St. Robert Bellarmine and other distinguished saint/scholars have anticipated such a time as ours and told us how we should act when in doubt. We should “cleave with all our hearts to Sacred Tradition” while respectfully, though firmly, upbraiding those in authority over us for their abuse of office in following their own lights and turning unto fables, as St. Paul predicted.

    We cannot judge the intent of individuals, especially those in high ecclesiastical office, all we can do is acknowledge that something has gone seriously wrong and take the necessary steps to save our souls amidst the storm. That harbour of salvation is to be found in a return to Traditional Catholicism.

    We see today how Pope Francis and the world’s bishops are largely silent on the supernatural life, focussing instead on the purely natural. Indeed, Pope Francis speaks of this world as “our common home” when Catholic teaching declares that heaven is our common home and that this world is but a place of exile. This is the real “climate change emergency” that no one wants to talk about, i.e., the universal loss of supernatural faith in the Church and the world, the result of years of the New Mass and its undermining effect of the sacred.

    January 2, 2023 at 6:40 pm
    • Antoine Bisset

      I cannot do a simple “like” as I have an “unsupported browser”. Ho hum.

      January 2, 2023 at 8:11 pm
      • Crouchback

        Cardinal Pell has died…..

        January 10, 2023 at 10:51 pm
    • Josephine


      Excellent, as we always expect from you.

      You give a short form of one of my favourite quotes from Archbishop Lefebvre. Here it is in full – it’s so crystal clear:

      For it is a masterstroke of Satan to get Catholics to disobey the whole of Tradition in the name of obedience.

      Absolutely! Amen! Thank you for reminding me of that quote – it really does say it all, IMO.

      January 2, 2023 at 8:35 pm
    • editor


      Unlike Antoine, my browser allows me to “like” so I have just clicked “like” for your terrific post at January 2nd, 6.40pm. Well said!

      January 3, 2023 at 1:19 am
  • Athanasius


    Thank you for your like. I like likes because it makes me feel, well, liked! Any chance of a pay increase?

    January 3, 2023 at 11:47 am

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