Friday, December 14, 2012


Yes, Viginia, this is an Ordinary Form Mass celebrated completely by the books in an Extraordinary Form Mass sort of way and by Bishop Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin! And please notice that the young seem to be attracted to Catholicism of this kind!

But first, a rant and kudos. Cardinal Dolan is ranting that the drive-by media isn't reporting on the success of some law suits the Catholic Church has against the HHS mandate. What else is new? If the news isn't about celebrity, who cares?

But I must ask the Holy Catholic Church leaders in this country and other Catholic bloggers who have yet to comment on the bombshell news from the NCCB that we Catholics are "encouraged" to support the sanctity of life, the sanctity of marriage and religious liberty by: 1. fast and abstinence every Friday of the year; 2. A holy hour the last Sunday of each month; 3. Pray the Rosary every day; 4. add a prayer to the Universal prayer for life, liberty and marriage; 5. participate in 2013's fortnight of freedom.

Has anyone seen nary a mention of any of this anywhere else? Is there a news blackout? Just ranting and wondering!

Now two kudos:

1. British weekly notices growing popularity of traditional Catholicism: (And this has to be the quote of the year!): The Economist notices the rising popularity of the Latin Mass among the faithful in England, and remarks that the congregations seem disproportionately young. A magazine rarely sympathetic toward the Catholic Church, The Economist sees this trend toward traditionalism as a sign that something has gone wrong.


The return of the old rite causes quiet consternation among more modernist Catholics. Timothy Radcliffe, once head of Britain’s Dominicans, sees in it “a sort of ‘Brideshead Revisited’ nostalgia”. The traditionalist revival, he thinks, is a reaction against the “trendy liberalism” of his generation. Some swings of pendulums may be inevitable. But for a church hierarchy in Western countries beset by scandal and decline, the rise of a traditionalist avant-garde is unsettling. Is it merely an outcrop of eccentricity, or a sign that the church took a wrong turn 50 years ago? READ THE WHOLE ARTICLE HERE!

2. Bishop Morlino of Madison gave a homily on Ad Orientem worship. I wonder if he read my little old blog and the interest here about it? This is what he has to say:

Bishop Morlino gave another killer catechetical homily this last Sunday on the need for ad orientem in worship.

[The first reading] says, “look to the east and see your children gathered” meaning the children, the saints, of the new and heavenly Jerusalem. [...] The essence of waiting is waiting with your whole heart and soul. You’re turned in the direction that is that which you’re waiting for. And that gives your waiting a sure and certain hope, a beautiful hope. The prophet says “Look to the east.” Look toward heaven. Look toward the heavenly Jerusalem. And John the Baptist repeats the prophet in another place, saying: “Every valley will be made lifted up, every mountain will be leveled, and a straight way will be made to heaven so that all flesh will see the salvation of God.

Our advent waiting is a full intent directed waiting. Just as I look for dad up the street to make that turn around the [corner after work], so too we are looking to the east.

We have to be people who concretely, physically, look to the east. Now clearly, that doesn’t mean nobody can go to work or school tomorrow, because we’re going go spend the day looking toward the east. Our great opportunity to look east is here at the liturgy.

Pope Benedict says over and over again that to look toward the east means to turn toward the Lord. And that’s why it’s so important to have the crucifix front and center, both for the priest and for the people.

Because during Mass, I’m supposed to be looking toward the east, toward heaven. I’m not supposed to be trying to entertain you, or hold your attention in some way. I’m supposed to be looking toward the east. So it’s good that the crucifix is right there, so that I can’t see the people clearly, nor can they see me clearly. They’re not looking at me, the priest. They’re looking at Jesus Christ, the high priest, toward the east.

The crucifix on the altar, a big one, is not an obstruction. It’s there to help us live the very basics of our faith, including advent, which means looking toward the east, which is turning toward the Lord. And when we look at the crucifix, you from your side, I from my side, we’re all turned toward the Lord.

And I’m sure that the day will come when we will turn toward the Lord together, in even a more full way when we all face east, when we all turn toward the Lord in the same direction. And when we do that, that’s not the priest turning his back on the people, it’s the priest directing the people to look toward the east, to obey the prophetic word, to believe how concrete, real, physical and visible Jesus Christ was and is. How concrete, real, physical and visible is the last coming, from the east.

The east matters. It matters a lot. That’s why the creator gave us the sunrise from the east to remind us that from there, comes the light, who is Christ.

As we behold the flesh and blood of Christ, in the sacramental sign of the Eucharist, we are turned toward the east, as Jesus comes to use here in mystery, to remind ourselves that our whole life is an eager, prayerful waiting for him to come in majesty, waiting for him to come from the east, turning toward the Lord.

And now let's stop talking in academic, theoritical ways about the Ordinary Form of the Mass and ad orientem. This is Saint Joseph's perfect solution each Sunday at our 12:10 PM Mass and it is by the 2012 Roman Missal Book, with local adaptations of course!

And of course, I know there are those who insist on some Latin in the Ordinary Form done by the book as we did for the first time at our 12:10 PM Mass for the Solemnity of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist. This was an experimental Mass for this normally scheduled Mass at our 12:10 PM Sunday Mass time slot that then enabled me to sprint forward with this Mass being ad orientem regularly at 12:10 PM:


Templar said...

1. fast and abstinence every Friday of the year; 2. A holy hour the last Sunday of each month; 3. Pray the Rosary every day; 4. add a prayer to the Universal prayer for life, liberty and marriage; 5. participate in 2013's fortnight of freedom.

No, I have not heard of this anywhere but on your Blog. I have not even heard it mentioned in the Homily or Bulletine, certainly not from the Diocese or USCCB.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

It is on the USCCB blog and I saw it on the internet as a news item but nothing else since then and we're suppose to start the Holy Hour the Sunday after Christmas, which we are here. I'll have, I hope, something in the bulletin the Sunday before Christmas. It is very odd as this would seem to be big news hidden under a bushel basket for some odd reason.

ytc said...

Unless bishops force priests to include this in their bulletins, I doubt anything will come of it.

Ben said...

Wow! I never expected to see my little post about routine things in Madison go so far!

I put up a few more photos of the Mass here:

Note, he also wears a MANIPLE!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Ben, I appreciate your comments at PTB, keep it up!!!!

Ben Yanke said...

Thanks, Father.

Anonymous said...

Why are there altar girlettes??? Just ruined the whole Mass for me!!