Tag Archives: Latin mass

Bludgeoned by Tack Hammers

The funny thing about tack hammers, as any casual woodworker can attest, is that they still hurt when flung at a fellow even though as tools they’re only really useful at driving small tacks.

April 3 is coming indeed. For some it is coming early.

The Remnant ran a piece today – “Persecution Accelerating in Dioceses…” – which backs up what I have been hearing. Do check that article out.

One by one, dioceses on these shores are “suppressing” the venerable and august Mass of the Ages. Bishops complicit by their lack of vertebrae are capitulating to this evil. We all know that the Missal of Pius V cannot be abrogated. So instead they scurry to implement some rescript of a document that has no weight because you-know-who said they have to. In diocese after diocese, the Latin Mass is being driven out of parish churches. I have mentioned that priests at chancery levels have literally said to me that the gameplan on their part is simply to wait for him to die and try to ride out the storm. In the meantime, screw the rest of us I guess.

Yesterday I mentioned Albany. Ah Albany… After 40 years of Howie Hubbard, I’m surprised there is anyone left in that part of New York State who even knows what the Catholic faith is. And yet, surprisingly there are many faithful Catholics living there. Many of them attend the TLM. Over the weekend, it seems that Howie’s successor decided he needed to get the TLM out of parochial buildings. I suggested an alternative in the form of a local SSPX chapel. It is likely out-of-the-way for many but it is an option.

Today, one of my dearest friends who happens to live in that part of the country texted to tell me that there are two more options. The first is that the Carmelite Rite Mass continues to be offered at a nearby Carmel. Someone please help me out with an address. I searched but came up empty. The second is that the TLM may be offered at the Shrine of the North American Martyrs in Auriesville, NY as it is not a parish. That’s great unless it’s winter. The shrine church itself is cavernous (it seats 6000) but has no heat. But they didn’t think that would stop us, did they? Bundle up kids. It’s time for Mass!

How about my home state? The Trenton diocese this past Sunday moved the TLM to the basement. Just following orders from Rome, apparently… A friend emailed me that he and some friends attended Mass there as a sign of solidarity. I think that’s a remarkable idea and I hope it was appreciated.

Look, they’re hitting at us from every angle and it’s happening fast. The Remnant article even hinted that “a diocese in Texas” will soon have its TLM’s reduced or curtailed. Given that Texas has 15 diocese in two provinces I might dodge this bullet. Nah, they’ll throw a tack hammer at us too.

Read that article. So often we hear of complaints with no solutions. The author, Brian Mershon, offers what I believe are possibly the only solutions for many of us at this juncture – SSPX and organizing with like-minded Catholics.

A tack hammer hurts, friends, but it isn’t likely to kill. Pray your rosaries.

St. Peter Damian, pray for us!

Albany TLM

Came across this headline on Canon212 this afternoon:

“Albany Freakbishop Ed Crushes the Ancient Mass for His Blessed Francis“

The tweeter poignantly says, “April 3 came early for our community.”

Brings a tear to my eye for sure; but it also strengthens my resolve.

I have family and friends in the Capital Region of New York. I’ve visited many times. From my experience – and some may hate me for this but I really don’t care – I offer the following option.

Chapel of the North American Martyrs, 100 Boulevard, Hudson Falls (Glens Falls), NY

It might be out of the way but it’s the Mass. I’ve attended there myself. Very welcoming crowd and very valid Sacrifice.

Help each other out, friends. It’s come to this.

St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, pray for us!

Latin Mass for the Win!

As my dear mother-in-law said tonight:

“See? Worship God right and you win the Super Bowl!”

God Bless and hats off to Harrison Butker and especially Grant Aasen, his friend, for being such a good witness to the faith!

Lead Me?

This thought has been on my mind most of the week.

I’m trying to figure out the best way to ask my pastor how he intends to lead me “back into the Novus Ordo” when I don’t want to go. More to the point, I’m wondering how he intends to answer that question about me and my fellow parishioners when the bishop is forced to ask him.

Pray for your priests. Pray especially for trad priests. Satan will use their desire to be virtuous – particularly in the practice of obedience – as a cudgel with which to bludgeon them. I think of the vestments in the ancient Mass – how the priest crosses his stole in front and tucks it under his cincture. That same pastor I mentioned above once told me about the symbolism. “The priest,” he said, “is bound to the Mass.” Pray Our Lord, Who was bound and led to His cross, strengthen them.

“…Thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and lead thee whither thou wouldst not.”

Jn. 21:18
From the St. Joseph Edition, Baltimore Catechism. I include the picture because of the inset picture of Our Lord offering His Sacrifice through the person of His priest. The text is, bizarrely, from one of the interim missals used sometime between 1965-1970.

Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!

Frankie Fingers (and Fakers)

Two things came across my desk today that made me stop and ponder the meaning of life. By desk, I mean my phone while sipping my G&T mid-afternoon on my front porch. Don’t judge. We’ve been iced in for three days and I homeschool my kids. “Daddy needs his special teacher juice a little earlier today, kids. Math is hard.” By “pondering the meaning of life”, I mean I scratched my head and wondered aloud a phrase that rhymes with “cut the muck”. I’ll explain.

The first thing was this whole AI ChaGPT. What fresh hell is this nonsense? It’s a chatbot, obviously. It seems that people are simply using this program to write for them. Reporters, college kids, you name it. Adam has a great post on this on his site. I encourage you to check it out. He is one of the “natural writers” (as in, non-AI) I enjoy reading. Still I have to ask what is wrong with people today. I know that writing comes easily to me. I’ve been doing it for years and I rather enjoy it. I also get that not everyone can turn a phrase quickly. But to degenerate into the sheer slothfulness of letting a computer write your assignments start to finish? It also makes me wonder, a I withdraw more from the world and get my bearings in a world of tradition, how truly “fake” the world has become. The football player who collapsed on the field a month ago appeared in a video released by the league recently. Many are speculating that the video is itself a “deep fake”. Again I ask and encourage all to use their common sense. If things don’t appear to be right, they probably aren’t. Ask yourself every time, can I trust this thing before me? The answer most of the time these days is usually no.

I make this promise to you all here. Every word on these pages is my own and if they were first uttered by someone else I slap quotation marks around them.

The other thing several friends sent me today were the ridiculous comments made by Bergoglio in Zaire, sorry, Congo. Apparently the usurper prattled on about using your hands or playing with your fingers or something. “The thumb should point back at you, you rigid traditionalist. The index finger is to point at all the other rigid traditionalists and laugh. The middle finger…”

Stop right there, Jorge. I’m from Newark. I know how to use the middle finger. It was a question on the test to get my driving permit. Gotta’ make sure you know how to signal other drivers when the horn’s not loud enough.

St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church (FSSP), Tyler, TX (unrelated to post topic)

Also, are we living in a literal clown world? “This finger does this. That finger does that. Blah blah blah.” Generic childish platitude gobbledegook. That’s how we “catechize” these days. And just this afternoon I reviewed my son’s doctrine test. He wrote an essay on why the Mass is a sacrifice and is, in fact, the self-same sacrifice of Calvary. He cited Scripture. He mentioned the Fathers and Doctors. He drew upon the Baltimore Catechism. He did all of this in two paragraphs.

I must be doing something wrong.

He never mentioned his fingers once. Maybe I’ll have him go back and edit it. He can mention how in the Traditional Latin Mass the priest’s fingers are extremely important. The priest, having pronounced the words of consecration does not separate his thumb and index finger again until the ablutions out of love for Our Lord lest he drop any particles. I bet even a chatbot could figure that out.

It IS Your “Thing”. Period.

Over the past few years, as I have become more entrenched in the Traditional Latin Mass, I have made the suggestion on more than one occasion to not a few friends and family members that they also “give it a go”, as the Brits say.

“Come with me to Latin Mass,” I have offered. “Come and see what I have found!” It is truly a beautiful thing to discover one’s heritage. Realizing that this heritage was stripped from you unceremoniously by malicious actors, well that’s just another sad dimension in the very sad recent history of the Church. But the least I can do, I figure, is to encourage others to do what I have been given the grace to do – that is, to discover anew the ancient treasure of my Rite.

You see, I am a ROMAN Catholic. My father was a Roman Catholic and his father before him. My father’s mother, on the other hand, was an Anglican who converted to marry my grandfather. To her credit, when my grandfather’s drinking became too problematic to deal with effectively, and she (my grandmother) civilly divorced my grandfather; both of them continued to live (though apart) as though they were man and wife. That was in the early 1940’s. My dad was seven years-old and these things simply were not done. To her further credit, my grandmother embraced the Catholic faith. She sent my dad to a Benedictine prep school in New Jersey where he learned not only to love the faith but to sacrifice everything for his family and to do so chiefly through the daily attendance at the Holy Sacrifice. He married at the age of 21, fathered sixteen children, and gave to me, his youngest son, the gift of that devotion to daily Mass. This wouldn’t be possibly had it not been for the faith of Florence Nightingale Millican. I’m laying it on the line, folks. That was her actual name. Please pray for the repose of her soul.

So she is just one of many people to thank for the safety I now enjoy in the traditions of the Church – my Church, the ROMAN Church.

St. Lawrence Catholic Chapel (FSSP), Harrisburg, PA

There are others. It’s Christmas time so I will name them. An old friend from college named Michael Hichborn has been putting out videos and articles for years. He sure helped (though I don’t know if he knows it). I’d read his posts on Facebook back in the day and, curiosity being what it is, I would search the internet for what he was talking about. Another voice in the wilderness was Taylor Marshall. In the summer of 2018 I was working as a courier, taking long drives from Dallas to Lubbock or Houston or Memphis. Someone turned me on to his content and I’d listen to his videos while I drove. I have to say that he has the capacity to be a great teacher, something I respect because I am also a teacher. Though I do not always agree with some of the more click-batey titles of his content, I appreciate what he does and I thank him here for helping me to see the Truth. Then there is my nephew. He’s also my godson. Around the same time I was discovering tradition, he was about a half-step ahead of me owing to his wife. We’d talk with each other on the phone and the conversations couldn’t help but lead me to where I am. Thank God for him! I know it should be the other way around – the godfather coaching the godson, but he has more than lived up to his end of the spiritual bargain. My mother-in-law and brother-in-law, too, played a tremendous role in my life. Knowing people who truly lived the Catholic faith the way I knew I wanted to live it, who went to daily Mass, this was a huge help.

So when I invite others I am sometimes shocked at the standard reply I get. It always seems to be the same thing. Granted, there are the handful who say, “Sure! I’ll check it out!” and actually mean it. But the majority of the time I hear this. “Yeah… Sorry. Latin Mass just isn’t my thing.”

To these people I want to say the following: If you are Roman Catholic – as in, not Byzantine of any stripe – then Latin Mass absolutely IS your thing. It is the Mass of your fathers and grandmothers. It is the tradition of your faith. It IS your heritage. Latin Mass is what the saints heard every day. When Benedict XVI (still reigning by the way) introduced the language of “ordinary form” and “extraordinary form” in 2007, I think I know what he was attempting to do. But I also think he got the terms reversed. The default (ordinary form) ought to be the one that was in use going back to at least the 6th century and likely well before that.

I recently had a debate of sorts with another nephew who is getting married in the next year. He asked if Novus Ordo was valid. I said what I’ve said many times before. I believe it’s valid but horrible. It is not edifying. It is not beautiful. It is certainly not ancient nor is it traditional. And that is why I believe Our Lord is none too thrilled to be called down on the altar table. But to that same nephew I asked the following question: “Why don’t you come to my parish and check out the TLM? Again the response, “It’s just not my thing.” Look, dude, if you were having this conversation with me sixty years ago, that statement would sound ten times more retarded than it does in this moment; and believe me, it sounds pretty gay.

So, to all my trad friends, I issue this challenge. In the coming year of grace, try to get at least five people to come to a TLM with you. Pray for me and I will pray for you. Pray for our priests. They are high value targets to Satan and they need our support. Pray for the friend or sibling or parent or child who is on the fence and says “it’s not my thing” like this is an option between pleated and flat-front pants. We’re talking about the eternal Sacrifice here. It IS that important.

It is your thing and it is my thing. But more than that, it is Christ’s thing. We owe it to Him to make this happen.

Our Lady of Good Counsel, pray for us!

A Mighty Remnant and a Humble Thanksgiving

Last week I wrote a post about the state of the Traditional Latin Mass in the Diocese of Metuchen, NJ. Friends, I never imagined such a topic would ever cross my radar, let alone that I would write about it, yet here we are. The gyst of my piece was that Bishop Checcio (to call him a buffoon would be an injustice to buffoons) is essentially terminating the TLM in his diocese. In my piece I wrote that anyone interested in finding either a TLM or a traditional priest willing to offer a TLM in that area could write to me privately and I would assist as best I could.

And you wrote to me. In greater numbers than I would have imagined. The Bishop of Arlington recently wrote to his flock a friendly letter that my father would say should have actually been a telegram, as in, “FU. STOP. STRONG LETTER TO FOLLOW. END.” He wrote to tell them that he had to move the locations of the TLM’s in his diocese because Fwanciss told him to. In his letter, in an apparent attempt to justify the situation, the good bishop noted the “only 2% of the faithful in his see regularly attend the ancient Mass.” I’ve spoken with high-ranking priests in Arlington and even they don’t know exactly where that figure came from. One of them even admitted to me that using the number, even if completely verifiable, was not a good look for the bishop. It makes it sound as though, “Well, hey, there really aren’t that many of you going to this ‘thing’ over here so it’s OK that we totally shove you into a broom closet.”

Instead, what was reinforced for me over the weekend is that there are more of us out there than we may realize. More to the point, those of us who are out there are strong in our convictions and eager to help each other. Look, I get that I am relatively new to this community. I only started attending Latin Mass a little over four years ago. Granted I go every day and I have completely immersed myself in this world. But I definitely recognize that I am a no-body on this scene. I try to be careful when I criticize giants within the movement, always pointing out the great good they have done in the past before zeroing in on whatever issue I may take umbrage with at the moment. Unite the clans and all that, right? But I 100% feel a great sense of humility when I receive emails from fellow trad Catholics seeking help from me on where to find the ancient Mass in their area. And I say a prayer of thanksgiving every time I receive such a note. I am truly grateful and, as those of you who’ve written to me know, I respond to every email that isn’t clearly spam.

Body of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini (absent the head*) underneath the main altar, Cabrini High School Chapel, Washington Heights, Manhattan (NYC)

I wanted to take the time tonight to publicly say thank you to everyone who has been reading this blog over the past six months since I re-tooled what was a blog about raising my kids. Thank you for following my rants. Thank you for your questions. Thank you for your prayers. Someone had a Mass offered for me tomorrow morning (Thursday)! I will not know until the dreadful day of my judgment why God loves me so much but I am happy that He does. He has given me an abiding love for His Church and the Catholic faith and a passion for writing down my silly thoughts and I, a faithless sinner, occasionally churn out something halfway decent by His grace. But it is because you read the things I write and interact with me about them that I feel like I’m not alone in this dreadful fight against the world, the flesh, the devil, and now the antichurch masquerading as the Bride of Christ.

My friends, let us continue to offer prayer and sacrifice for each other. To those of you who have been in regular correspondence with me, thank you for the spark of true Christian friendship. To those who simply stop by once in a while, thank you for checking in. To all who read this, say a prayer for me, for the Church, and for all of our priests and know that I am praying for you.

St. Francis de Sales, pray for us!

*The head of Mother Cabrini was removed from her incorrupt body after its exhumation and is in Rome. The actual body, shown here, reposes with a wax head.