Sunday, January 14, 2018


Pope at Mass for Migrants and Refugees: 'Overcome fear and welcome the other'

Pope Francis celebrates the World Day of Migrants and Refugees with a Mass in St Peter’s Basilica and reminds us that in order to encounter others we must first overcome our fears.
By Seàn-Patrick Lovett

There was something even more international than usual about the celebration in St Peter’s Basilica this Sunday.

The sounds were those of the youthful and multilingual voices of the Hope choirs. The colors were those of the flags and multicultural costumes of the 49 nations represented.

Over 70 countries were present in the person of their Ambassador to the Vatican. And some 460 priests from all over the world concelebrated with the Holy Father.

Invitation and welcome

Pope Francis said he wanted to celebrate the World Day of Migrants and Refugees with a Mass of invitation and welcome. He based his reflections during the homily on the episode in St John’s Gospel where the disciples ask Jesus where He lives, and He responds: “Come and see.”

While new arrivals need to “know and respect the laws, culture and traditions of the countries that take them in”, local communities need to understand “the hopes and potential of the newly arrived, as well as their fears and vulnerabilities”.

Fear of encounter

It is not easy to enter into another culture, said the Pope, to understand the thoughts and experiences of people who are so different from us.
“Local communities are sometimes afraid the newly arrived will disturb the established order…and the newly arrived are afraid of confrontation, judgement, discrimination, and failure”.

Being afraid is not a sin

“Having doubts and fears is not a sin”, said the Pope. “The sin is to allow these fears to determine our responses, to limit our choices, to compromise respect and generosity, to feed hostility and rejection”.
The sin, he continued, “is to refuse to encounter the other”. Because every encounter is “a privileged opportunity to encounter the Lord”.
Pope Francis concluded by expressing the hope that “we may all learn to love the other, the stranger, as ourselves”.


TJM said...

Patronizing. Should have used Latin, the official universal language. I guess Francis is rejecting St. John XXIII’s teaching in Veterum Sapientia. I also wonder how many immigrants the Vatican has accepted. Do as I say, not as I do

Anonymous said...

I stopped listening and watching when I saw the “schola” comprised of pop singers and their torn jeans . How very sad. Frankenpope has got to go!

Henry said...

Looks like an "international Mass". What other situation would more clearly call for Latin. Unless the intent is to make the Mass's manner of celebration repugnant to everyone. Which is what these muli-lingual celebrations do.

Tom Makin said...

I'm done!!! The arrogance in not answering the Dubia, the answer in the form of a letter to his confreres in Argentina, the Germans, the politics, the Parolin "Paradigm"'s time for a house cleaning that can only begin in the Sistine Chapel.

Mark Thomas said...

With the exception of some Latin, how does the Mass offered by Pope Francis differ greatly from the "Creole Mass" offer in December 2011 A.D., by Pope Benedict XVI?

The "Creole Mass" featured Spanish and Portuguese.

Catholic News Service reported that "several musical pieces — including the Kyrie and Gloria — drawn from the “Misa Criolla,” a 1964 composition in Spanish that includes elements of Latin American folk music."

"Latin American musicians sang and played traditional instruments such as the bombo drum, flute, guitars and various percussion instruments like goat nails."

"Preceding the Mass, young people from Latin America and the Caribbean walked down the central aisle carrying flags from their home country; some wore colorful traditional costumes."


Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

“With the exception of some Latin, how does the Mass offered by Pope Francis differ greatly from the "Creole Mass" offer in December 2011 A.D., by Pope Benedict XVI?”

You just don’t get it Mark Thomas. It doesn’t matter if Francis did something wrong or if Benedict XVI did something wrong. When JPII had that Assisi meeting, it was wrong. When Benedict XVI had the commeration in Assisi of that meeting with heretics and pagans, he was wrong. When Benedict XVI raised his personal enemies, and enemies of the Faith to the cardinalate, he was wrong. Your arguments are nonsensical. Something isn’t right or wrong because a particular person does them. Something is right or wrong because it is moral or immoral. Example: It is always and at all themes wrong for an adulterer to receive communion without amendment of life and confession. And Francis doesn’t have the authority to change that. If Benedict had tried to teach that, he would have been wrong.

Henry said...

Anonymous, I don't know exactly you're addressing, but you got it exactly right. Every pope since Vatican II has done things that were wrong. The current pope is unique in papal history only in that it seems almost everything he does or says is wrong to one extent or another.

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous at...January 15, 2018 at 8:27 AM...I understand your point in the sense that our Vatican II Era Popes have made pastoral decisions that have not produced the results desired by said Popes. But I don't believe that our Popes during the Vatican II Era have engaged in evil.

That said, my post yesterday does not mean that I believe that the folk Mass/"Creole Mass" offered by Pope Benedict XVI, or Pope Francis' "immigrant folk Mass," reflected the best tradition of the Roman Liturgy.

My point, which I advanced in poor fashion, was that we've been down this liturgical road with our Popes. Pope Saint John Paul II offered Masses that were akin in spirit to the "modern" Masses in question offered by Popes Benedict XVI and Francis.

The Roman Liturgy is, in general throughout the Latin Church, in shambles. When Popes offer "folk Masses," that empowers those within the Church who wish to promote one liturgical novelty after another.

Pope Benedict XVI/Cardinal Ratzinger complained about the collapsed state of Roman Liturgy. He gave us Summorum Pontificum. He also promoted the Creole folk Mass.
On the one hand, he promoted the Roman liturgical tradition. On the other hand, he promoted liturgical novelty. Pope Francis has done the same.

I am aware of that. But I won't go as far as to attribute evil to said Popes. was Pope Venerable Pius XII who, in earnest, but, I believe, in good faith, launched the radical reform of the Roman Liturgy. His successors have continued down the liturgical path that Pope Venerable Pius XII paved.


Mark Thomas

John Nolan said...

Loved the Simon and Garfunkel at the Offertory. Why is it assumed that all migrants are Latinos? Over here they are more likely to be from Bulgaria or Bangladesh.

By the way, we took in a lot of Syrian children displaced by the conflict there. Some of them turned out to be from Afghanistan and in their twenties.

TJM said...


LOL - Pius XII launched a "radical reform" of the Roman liturgy? Did you ever read Mediator Dei? Are you talking about the Easter Liturgy reforms? To my knowledge that's the only part of the Liturgy that Pius XII touched. He did NOTHING to the order of the Mass

Henry said...

Actually, TJM, there is some truth to the claim that Pius XII started it all (whether inadvertently or not). From an article (here) in a recent Adoremus Bulletin article:

The first papal encyclical devoted specifically and entirely to the liturgy, . . . Mediator Dei constitutes the foundation and starting point of the movement towards liturgical reform that culminated in the Second Vatican Council. . . . Mediator Dei (MD), as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said in 2008, “gave an impetus to the liturgical movement,” . . . At the time of its publication, the foremost American liturgical journal, Orate Fratres, said that by it the Holy Father had “granted official Catholic status” to the liturgical movement. . . . Pope Pius XII provides a definition of liturgy and a description of liturgical development, which have led some liturgical scholars to describe the encyclical as the Magna Carta of the Liturgical Movement. . . . Mediator Dei anticipated and formed part of the foundation of Sacrosanctum Concilium (SC), the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy.

Concretely, the genesis of the post-Vatican II liturgical disaster dates back to Pius XII’s 1948 appointment of his Pontifical Commission for the Reform of the Liturgy with Msgr. Annibale Bugnini as its secretary. He turned out to be the Commission’s dominant member, right up to the eve of Vatican, when its plans fed directly into the drafting of Sacrosanctum Concilium. Of course, Bugnini was also the dominant member of the post-conciliar commission for the implementation of SC.

As seems clear from the memoirs of Louis Bouyer and Fernando Antonelli, who served on these commissions, Bugnini exercised a most extraordinary influence—or even some sort of power--over the popes of this era (with the exception of John XXIII, who banished him from Rome, an exile that was unfortunately terminated by Paul VI).

Apparently it was at his instance that Pius XII reformed the rites of Holy Week (gutted them, many traditionalists would say) and eliminated most of the venerable octaves and vigils from the liturgical calendar, eliminated proper last gospels from the missal, and introduced a host of minor changes such as making the Dies Irae optional at weekday Masses for the Dead, all of which can be viewed as opening the door for the willy nilly changes to come.

TJM said...


I am aware of that, but radical? On a scale of 1 to 10 what Pius XII did hardly merits a 1 when it come to the Mass itself.