A current phrase that is bandied around somewhat is "the elephant in the room" referring to a large problem or issue that overshadows all else.
Well, in Westminster Archdiocese they have a Woolly Mammoth in the room, frozen in time, long passed its sell by date ("use by 7th July 2007") and still no sign of the ice melting.
I refer to the scandalous fact that, out of all the Diocese of England and Wales, only Westminster has not moved forward one step since the Holy Father's Motu Proprio regarding the responsibilities of the clergy in providing the Extraordinary Form of Mass wherever there was a demand.
Where may you attend an EF Mass in London (Westminster) on a Sunday?
The London Oratory 9am
St James, Spanish Place 9.30am (thank you Fr Colven and the priest who comes to celebrate Mass each week (but please use a microphone)
St Edmund's, Ware (where?)
Holy Trinity and St Augustine, Baldock (one Sunday per month)
And that's it! Hardly a lavish offering, not exactly what Pope Benedict had in mind!
Westminster is small geographically but big in terms of Catholic population, it is a Diocese that includes the capital city of London - is that meagre offering good enough?
Let's just look at the profile and resources of Westminster.....
417 secular priests
263 priests belonging to a religious order
49 - assorted others
That's a total of 729 priests!
Yet all that Archbishop Nichols can manage to provide is 3.25 EF Masses on a Sunday! Extraordinary! More than extraordinary it is a cause for scandal!
By my rough reckoning that makes the Sunday Mass score something like this:-
OF Masses circa................ 400
Homosexual Mass................. 1
EF Masses......................... 3.75
What are the Traditional Catholics of Westminster doing about it? Holding prayer vigils in the Piazza? Nope. Creating petitions to forward to Rome? Nope. Writing to the Papal Nuncio? Maybe.
As an ex Westminster Diocese Catholic I appeal for all to write to Archbishop Nichols in the first instance and then to Archbishop Mennini - perhaps then we can slice the Woolly Mammoth up and let the ice melt away for good.