A bizarre story came to me this morning from a friend back home. We’ll call him Friend A. He had gone to breakfast after the high Mass with his wife, their two young sons, and a lifelong friend (Friend B) and that friend’s wife. My friend and his family seem to be on the same trajectory that I’ve been on these past few years. In other words, we were the prisoners in the cave who were taken up to the surface, blinded and hurt by the light, and now, realizing the reality of the truth in the light of day, find it hard to go back to the cave except to tell the others. My friend’s friend is not quite there yet.
The two couples had met for breakfast after attending Mass in their respective parishes. Friend A has been on Friend B’s case for a while now to come over to Tradition. Friend B has been hesitant. He’s been on a unicorn hunt for some time now, trying to capture that elusive “reverent Novus Ordo”. And he thought he had found it too! He informed Friend A that he had been really enjoying his current parish and that the priest there was “manly”. Keep in mind that this word can mean different things to different people. But, he assured Friend A that the Mass in that parish was just great.
This morning Friend A asked Friend B, “So, how’s that priest you like so much?”
“Ugh… We had to stop going there,” came the reply.
Inquiring as to what had happened, Friend A was dumbfounded to discover the answer.
It turns out that Friend B had gone to his priest for some spiritual direction not long ago. Now at this point in the story, I personally thought it was going to take a salacious turn. Instead what he heard was this.
“The priest informed me that he just doesn’t like the taste of wine and so when he pours the water and wine into the chalice, he puts, like, a drop of wine and then fills the rest with water.”
Salacious? No. Invalid? Very Likely.
On that note, I cannot conceive (and I could be completely and wildly off-base here) that wine which has been so watered down at a ratio of hundreds of parts to one, could actually still be considered wine. If that is the case then no consecration has taken place.
Friend B spoke to a priest of a traditional Society of Apostolic Life who informed him that he should report the abuse to the chancery at once. Here’s the deal, though… That chancery is in the Archdiocese of… wait for it… Newark!
So, friends in the four northeastern counties of the Garden State, keep a sharp eye peeled. Not sure what you can do about it but at least you should be on the lookout. Then again, I doubt many of the readers of this blog are attending this particular parish.
St. Francis de Sales, pray for us!