Thursday, 30 August 2012

Father Thwaites SJ and a travesty concerning his Requiem

Most people will have heard by now that the much loved and admired priest, Fr Hugh Thwaites, a man who, for all of his priestly life, celebrated the Tridentine Latin Mass, is to be buried at a concelebrated Requiem Ordinary Form Mass.

                                    Source: Hermeneutic of Continuity

That is a cruel trick; a vile and nasty attempt to wipe the eye of a dead priest.

Dare I say that it is typical of many liberal Catholic priests and laity alike.

The LMS claim that they feel certain that Fr Thwaites would have held a Society 'card' stating that the holder wishes to be buried according to the Rites of the Extraordinary Form of Mass.

That is not enough to guarantee that this will happen.

I have seen many good traditional Catholic friends, who would not have attended a Mass in the Ordinary Form if you had held a gun to their head, being assigned to the Novus Ordo after their death.

What is needed is for one's last will and testament to contain the wish to have a TLM Requiem Mass - with no deviation or exception.

That will ensure that you receive the required graces that a Latin Mass carries.

Juventutem London has a Facebook petition for Fr Thwaites (whose burial is tomorrow, I believe).
NB: I have since been informed that this page has nothing to do with JL although I did receive an email from them purporting to be running a petition. It does show that Facebook cannot be trusted.

Piers Darcy also suggests emailing the Head of the Jesuit Order in England and Wales; here are the details:-

A number of you have responded to my message (below) expressing 'disquiet' about the fact that Father Thwaites' wish will be frustrated. I would suggest that you send a 'nice' message to the Jesuit Provincial at  His name is  Father Dermot Preston SJ  


  1. Hi, that Facebook page has nothing to do with us, and also isn't a petition- it is simply to raise awareness and have people write to the superior.

  2. The above is from Juventutem London

  3. Have a "month's mind" thirty days later. I did it for my dad, and it was the next best thing.

  4. Sorry, Richard, but as expressed, this won't do. He is being buried according to the rites of Holy Mother Church; concelebration means that his Jesuit brothers are coming together to give him the best they on earth can; neither Fr Thwaites nor any of us will not get to Heaven more or less quickly, or avoid Hell, simply because of the Form of Mass offered at his funeral. If a public EF Mass might offer an opportunity for people to suggest that the EF is "better" than the OF, or, perish the thought, "more efficacious", then whoever is responsible for organising the Requiem would be derelict in his duties.

    I don't know why the Order has decided to do what it has, and it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that somebody is making a point, and in a very unpleasant way, but I bet Fr Thwaites, wherever he is, won't care a jot.

    1. Ttony - compare the proper prayers for the traditional requiem with those of the new. That is the real issue here, rather than the ordinary of the Mass. If this normally a 'partisan' issue, do not let it be here. This is an issue about prayers for the dead. The New Rite has three options, two of which focus more on the resurrection than on the prayers for the sinful soul burning in purgatory. One is closer to the traditional rite's proper prayers.

      In this respect, the traditional rite is both better and more efficacious for its job. At their heart, both rites are Calvary, this we know. However, on the extrinsic (rather than intrinsic) level, you get what you pray for. If you're comforting the living with thoughts of resurrection and are not praying for the dead, as is likely to happen with the New Rite, then the soul just carries on burning in purgatory, unable to merit anything for itself. If you compare the prayers, you will see.

      However we want to re-iterate that the facebook is nothing to do with Juventutem (please edit the post Richard?) and that it is only about awareness, it is not even a petition.

  5. Father T's Mass should be the way he wanted it. It's not only a matter of orthodoxy-with-a-small-o, it's a matter of basic courtesy and dignity.

  6. It's just the kind of thing they'd do.

  7. This is just my experience and my opinion.You do not speak of Calvary or sacrifice at a New Rite requiem.The assumption is that the deceased person is already in heaven,and the tone and emphasis is on comfort for the living,and of how wonderful that person was in life.It seems a totally different ball game if I may put it in lay mans terms.That is how it is for the ordinary catholic,you go straight into the arms of God...whatever.It might be different for Fr.Thwaites.When I contemplate my own requiem,I do care a jot.........I will need all the help I can get,and that means for me the full rites of the traditional requiem.


  8. Ttony - Juventutem has said it all for me. I would also reiterate that the wishes of the deceased should be paramount. Thanks Mack, agreed. Tancred and ACCH also - agree totally.

  9. Perhaps we could ensure that TTonys last wishes are completely ignored, and then presume that he, wherever he is, won't give a jot. what a jerk.

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  11. Father Thwaites was a close friend. I am certain that he would have been glad of any Mass, OE or OF offered for the repose of his soul.
    The real travesty are the statements made by some that the only preparation he gave converts was to teach them the Rosary. When I was a layman I spent many hours helping with the instruction of his converts. I know he gave them Rosary beads, but he also ALWAYS gave them the penny catechism. Some he urged to purchase the catechism og Fr.Hardon SJ!

  12. As the close relative of a Jesuit, this causes me great concern. Father Preston, to whom I have written, does not respect the concerns of individual Jesuit priests and has been very dismissive to me personally about my concerns about the needs (spiritual and temporal)of older Jesuits. This is the tip of an iceberg and sadly may become another scandal if he refuses to listen to the reasonable requests and wishes of the elderly religious he is responsible for.

  13. Well maybe if Fr. Thwaits had been a protestant like Tony Palmer who not only received Catholic Requiem Mass - but one for a bishop no less, he surely would have been offered one.

  14. Father Thwaites would have been more than happy to leave politics to the politicians.As for the comments regarding the rosary and converts, anyone who really knew him would tell you that he never let anyone settle on a single step of salvation. Every time you met him he would give kindly encouragement to enlarge your practice of faith
    He once told me that as a priest the GoodLord held him responsible for the salvation of every soul he met. A challenge he never shirked