Sunday, November 5, 2023


 You can watch St. Gregory’s Facebook video of the Vigil Mass for the 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time of which I am the celebrant, The Vigil is on Saturdays at 4pm and packed. The Mass starts at minute 19. My stunning and brief homily is after the Gospel, duh! Watch it HERE.

Here is a link to the Jesuits ouch critique of the Eucharistic Revival:

Will there be a Eucharistic revival?

I won’t refer to the lengthy commentary I post of the Jesuit’s stinging critique of the Eucharistic Revival in our country. I will simply reiterate what I’ve been saying but with a bit more clarity.

You can undo all the damage done to the Modern Roman Missal by liturgical theologians who don’t like either the TLM or the MRM. They have not been pleased with the new missal and have since its release tried to reimagine it in the most progressive blah way since the 1970’s. No one is pleased with the actual modern Missal as everyone wants to change or improve it according to their own tastes. 

So let me give my bias for improving the MRM as I am realistic that the MRM will never be eliminated in a return to the TLM and I have never advocated that the TLM should replace the MRM, only that it should influence the MRM which evolved from the TLM and then was disordered by the manner of its celebration.

1. Start with bishops and priests and form them to stop being priest-celebrities acting like a talk show host and improvising any part of the Mass, especially during the Introductory Rites and becoming chatty Kathies, greeting everyone, using banal secular terms in addition to “The Lord be with you” to say hello, good evening and good night. Hospitality should take place before the Mass begins outside or in the narthex/vestibule but not in the nave or sanctuary of the church! Make sure bishops and priests “SAY THE BLACK and DO THE RED!” Training bishops and priests to celebrate the Mass by the rubrics, without chattiness and making themselves the center of attention will go a long way in a Eucharistic Revival. But be human, not robotic!

2. The Liturgy of the Eucharist should be ad orientem. Ad orientem makes the Liturgy of the Eucharist more mystical, transcendent and reverent. It makes clear that we have entered the Holy of Holies and that the Church with the priest-celebrant leading the way is directing herself to the heavens.

3. Make kneeling for Holy Communion the norm.

4. Make sure there is silence in the nave before and after Mass for adoration and prayer before the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle which is dead center. 

5. Only use well trained/formed/ and good standing Catholics formally installed by the bishop in the ministry of lectors and acolytes. Make sure they wear either a cassock and surplice or white alb, with or without cincture. 

6. Emphasize attention to detail, choreography and training of all liturgical minsters, especially altar servers. Make sure they know they should help in showing forth the solemnity of the Mass and not be a diversion or distraction to it!

7. Emphasize good preaching and that the homily should be 5 to 7 minutes in length, never more than 7 minutes but fine if less than 5 minutes! Don’t give a theological exegesis of the readings but rather practical applications of the readings in terms of faith and good works and Catholic spirituality and life to the people in front of them.

8. Make sure the parish life has public and private devotions with the Liturgy of the Hours prayed on a regular basis and in a formal way. Start with priests’ gathering where the Liturgical Celebration of the Liturgy of the Hours is done in a formal way, with proper vestments for the leaders and good chanting and include Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament. Enough with folksiness and stripped down celebrations of the Sacraments and Divine Office!

9. Make sure the parish has good religious education, service ministries and youth ministry.Make sure the Sacrament of Penance is frequently scheduled each week at a time when most laity can attend.

10. Go in peace and glorify the Lord by your life!


TJM said...

Father McDonald,

All wonderful suggestions that the self-absorbed will ignore. I would not be so sure about the TLM and its potential to someday to replace the Novus Ordo. Those thousands of young French Catholics on the Chartres Pilgrimage were not marching to the Novus Bogus! And as you know, very few Catholics attend Mass in France and last year about 25% of the priests ordained, celebrate the TLM exclusively, notwithstanding the ultra vires Motu Proprio, Traditionis Custodes(Crudelis). We are in a demographic sinkhole and the Novus Ordo does not seem to have the power to attract.

monkmcg said...

Loved the suggestions - except the 5-7 minute homily. Better to say something meaningful than to focus on the amount of time. One other slight modification: in addition to silence before/after (not the social club atmosphere) but also some silence during the Mass. The music folks seem to want to fill every second with some form of noise.

TJM said...


We could go back to silent Canon!

Mark Thomas said...

Perhaps the first time ever that "Eddie Haskell" was referenced during a homily.



Father, thank you for having offered, as well as posted, the Vigil Mass.


Mark Thomas

ByzRus said...

Fr. AJM,

I suspect that you are preaching to the proverbial choir with most here.

Fetishes prevail. Anymore, they mostly seem to.

Ad orientem would be the most impactful change. The RC's desire eucharistic revival, present the consecration seriously. Ad orientem directs us, leads us to the New Jerusalem, eliminates the individual and focuses us soley on the passion, death and resurrection being reenacted via the bloodless sacrifice.

There's a fundamental misunderstanding between meaning and meaningfulness, at least to me. As you suggested, if the liturgy itself provides all that is needed, why is there this seemingly endless obsession on its manipulation?

Where we might part company is on the 5-7 minute homily. My priest spoke for almost 15 minutes this morning. I'm not entirely certain as I wasn't watching the clock. It was engaging yet dense, based in scripture and portable relative to our daily lives. I'm sure some were getting anxious for its end, I was genuinely interesting in hearing what Fr. had to say. Some have it, others not so much and in some instances, I don't fault them either. There are some priests who freely admit to not being homilists but they make up for it relative to their other strengths, namely, superbly celebrated liturgy. I can live with that.

Part of me thinks the Roman Liturgy has what it needs, otherwise it would be invalid. Its the execution (inclusive of sometimes horrid music) that's the problem. For those who strive to reduce liturgy to its lowest common denominator, they should just become protestants. We are a liturgical people. Again, we are a liturgical people. Why do I say this? Because our most common public/communal action is liturgy, not worship and praise or preaching sola scriptura. What the Roman Church should avoid, is strictly having "mass parishes". You rightly suggest there are other liturgies outside of mass that can and should be part of the diet of a particular parish.

ByzRus said...

I just listened to your homily. The points you made were very valid, of course. I guess I don't mind when the homily goes longer, provided its deliver actually has something to say. And for the love of St. Peter, nothing turns an audience off more than when the homilist starts with "I'm going to give you 4 scenarios". "First...etc." and half of the congregation is already antsy wondering how long it will take to get to "Fourth". Just let us live through the torture, don't tell us upfront how we will be tortured.

TJM said...

I was surprised by the Jesuit’s excellent criticism of the process for Eucharistic Revival. He raised very legitimate concerns. Be should be advising the USCCB. I hope he also pens something on the Synod of Synods

Mark Thomas said...

The importance of Confession is promoted here:

Eucharistic Revival:


"Every parish in the country will experience profound renewal while participating in Grassroots efforts inspired by the four pillars of the Revival. Parishes will be equipped with simple, proven tools to invite their community into the following:

• Renew the emphasis on the celebration of the liturgy


• Host monthly Encounter Nights, featuring Eucharistic adoration and the Sacrament of Confession


• Implement the “Jesus and the Eucharist” small group initiative

• Bring lapsed brothers and sisters home with the “Invite One Back” campaign
• Recommit to serving the poor in your community in a new way


Mark Thomas

Unknown said...


Agreed on ad orientem. It makes a huge difference, even in the most modern church aesthetically. You turn around the priest, people start getting the idea that the liturgy isn't about them, and a lot of other things will fall into place.

I once told this to our diocese's director of worship (a good young priest, doing great things for the diocese including protecting our TLMs since 2021) when we had him for dinner, and he completely agreed. He even said that pastors can implement ad orientem and the bishop won't stop them--as long as the parishioners go along with it (a large caveat, but still a huge shift in attitude from our previous bishops).


TJM said...

I truly believe if the reform of the TLM had been limited to using the vernacular for the prayers other than the Ordinary prayers and the posture of the priest remained ad orientem, the reforms would have been better received. Of course a Solemn Sung Mass would be permitted to be all in Latin so the Propers would be sung in Latin chant. But for the destructive progressives who treated the Mass like a vanity project, this approach would never have been acceptable. They did not give a damn about tye reaction of the laity.

Mark Thomas said...

We have entered the second phase of the National Eucharistic Revival — Eucharistic devotion at the Parish level.

In regard to the above, I just visited several parish web sites throughout the country. I found that one parish after another has promoted the Holy Sacrament of Penance in line with the National Eucharistic Revival.

Parishes have promoted Processions, Eucharistic Adoration, as well as Confession.

My confidence in the National Eucharistic Revival had been strong. Now, my level confidence in the National Eucharistic Revival is even greater.


Mark Thomas

Unknown said...


Only 80% of Catholics have stopped attending Mass every Sunday. How could the (irreversible, irreversible, irreversible) implementation of Vatican II gone any better??


TJM said...


Well it is going swimmingly according to our Useful Idiot!

The big lie on which “reform” was based was to make the Mass more “understandable” so people could “participate!” I guess they never heard of a Missal?

Unknown said...


Missals didn't exist before 1970. I read that on Praytell.


TJM said...


PraySniff has been lying and suppressing comments for years.

I received the St. Joseph Daily Missal as a birthday gift from my parents in 1964.