Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Time to invest in action?

If you have read this blog over the last week or so you will have noticed a certain preoccupation with the frustration of not moving forward fast enough.

In the last five years, since Summorum Pontificum we have seen some improvements but they, for the most part, fall into the "rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic" category.

In fact, I did notice a statistic on someone's blog (sorry, can't recall whose it was) recently that, according to Fr Z, something like only 470 EF Masses are celebrated each Sunday, globally. I hope I have got that right, please correct me if I'm wrong.

470 Masses is nothing. It is a statistic that would barely merit a mention on the final print-out.

Average is not good enough!

In England and Wales we have one bishop (out of about 26) who has shown courage and responsiveness in answering the Holy Father's call.

And what of the Holy Father? How does he feel about the response to SP so far?

I can fantasise about a meeting with some of the key Cardinals and the Holy Father during which Pope Benedict says:

"Could someone please give me a quick breakdown as to how things have changed since 2007?"


Holy Father: "Anyone  please?"

Shuffling of feet and clearing of throats and then:

"Well, your Holiness, not much has changed in fact; there are one or two more Latin Masses in Europe, possibly a few more in the USA, not much happening outside of Campos in South America and the rest, well, you know its a nul pointer really"

Holy Father: "Hmmm......seems I was wrong in my thought processes but, at least we have given them the chance. So, from now on it's full steam ahead on the Ordinary Form, pity but no one seems to have smelt the incense" (sigh)

There has been comment made on Una Voce and their role in hosting, if that is the correct word, a forthcoming traditional pilgrimage this Autumn. Now, I do not know much about this organisation so it would be wrong to take it to task but it has had 45 years in which to increase the spread of the 1962 Missal throughout the world. EF Pastor has asked that I remember the good works of this group and, I am sure they are there but, in 45 years a potent group should have a better success rate, if that is how success is quantified.

But, enough of carping about others, what positive action could be started to get things moving, not just on the Latin Mass front but also on Education, Morals and Social teachings - what can be done to inform and educate the largely misinformed laity?

Well, I do believe that we are blessed with an astute and holy man in our Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Mennini.

For a start, and it is only a start, I would hope that perhaps we could look at developing a Rosary Bouquet to be presented to him, say early in 2013.
Why so long? Because, it would be good if we could present as many as possible to him and, if 500 of us could pledge five Rosaries a week between now and then, it would result in a bouquet of over 50,000.

And, to accompany the bouquet, a polite request for Rome to consider the four points placed before the Archbishop.

That is:-

Catholic Education
Moral Guidance - IVF, Euthanasia, Abortion, Contraception etc
Catholic Social Teaching
Response by Diocese to the faithful's requests following Summorum Pontificum

There is much, much more to be done but, it's a start (perhaps I should state that several notable Catholics have emailed me to say that they would be prepared to join a suitable initiative. It could work and if you think that the concept has legs, please let me know either via the comment box or by email to: r.collinsassoc@btinternet.com

Alternatively, if you think that I am barking mad, please offer up an Ave on my behalf.


  1. Yes,I do think this has legs....count me in(.I have reason to thank the good Nuncio....re the recent appointment in Portsmouth.)I also think,that the widespread application of item 4(SP)would go a long long way in resolving items 1,2 and 3.A simplistic view I know......

  2. very encouraging. You are most certainly not barking mad.
    I will contact you.

  3. I'm in....and this is why. In our small town (big village?) some fifty years ago, a priest and a handful of the faithful built a church. He faced much opposition from others and was often derided and abused but still he built the church. The small collection of archive photographs show glorious Masses; processions to the tiny grotto of Our Lady and the great witness of Corpus Christi .

    This year a new priest came. He said 'no' to the processions and for the first time since the church was built there were no processions in May and no procession for Corpus Christi.

    The slide into average has got to be stopped.

  4. Why not have a monthly or bi-monthly day set aside where people promise a rosary for this intention? You could advertise it on your blog a week beforehand, thereby inviting any newcomers (supporters) to join in. You could even set a time that suits all so that everyone prays at the same time and then confirms by comment that they have said the rosary.

    If nothing else, it will get people praying the rosary!!!
    God never wastes prayers, they last forever and ever.

    Just my four penneth worth.

    And Richard, of course you are barking, I wouldn't dream of reading your blog if you were boringly 'sane' ;) (joke)

    God bless your endeavour, according to His Will and purpose.

  5. Richard,
    Count me in-no good relying on the majority of our Hierarchy-or groups who are subservient to them also!



  6. 'no good relying on the majority of our Hierarchy-or groups who are subservient to them also!'

    Douay-Rheims Bible Hebrews 13:17
    "Obey your prelates, and be subject to them. For they watch as being to render an account of your souls; that they may do this with joy, and not with grief. For this is not expedient for you."

    1. Shadowlands
      "no good relying on the majority of our Hierarchy-or groups who are subservient to them also!"
      Galatians chapter 2.:
      St. Thomas,Aquinas:
      Paul who was Peter's subject, rebuked him in public on account of the imminent danger of scandal concerning the faith, and , as the gloss of St. Augustine says: "Peter gave an example to superiors that if at any time they should happen to stray from the straight path they should not disdain to be rebuked by their subjects."
      Where obedience to any superior is concerned, St. Thomas Aquinas gives us these principles as a rule of thumb. If our superior commands us to do something that is wrong, we have a duty to disobey. (Apologia Pro Marcel Lefebvre by Michael Davies!

      God Bless,


    2. Shadowlands
      I remember years ago having the temerity to quote scripture at my mother in order to further my argument. Her reply "God helps those who help themselves". I hope that you are not inferring that we should be like Nero and fiddle (or in some cases twang guitars) whilst Rome burns.

  7. I hope that you will not mind if I give a slightly different slant on this.

    We must never stop praying the rosary and praying generally for the church. This must continue at all costs.

    However, there has been 400 years of prayer for the intentions of the Church since the reformation and this prayer is enough to deal with the job in hand.

    Much Catholic education has been lost and one of the most important parts of Catholic teaching we have lost is that there are basically two types of intercessors. There are those who actually pray and in effect throw in the missiles (which has now been going on for 400 years) and then there are those intercessors that go in and open the doors up on the ground.

    I find that every time I try and open the doors on the ground in my own church the opposition crumbles away far more easily that I ever expected.

    However, every time I do go in and open some door I am also 100% confident that there has been already been enough prayer in that 400 years and that I fully accept God's grace that I have already won.

    Yes, it does get a bigger battle at National level but all the hard work has still already been done.

  8. The education of Catholics appears to be at the root of many of the problems which we now face. When Catholic schools were established in this country, they were seen as the key element of restoring the faith. Many parishes built their school before they built their church. Then the new schools struggled to maintain their identity in the face of demands from the state for inspection and this struggle succeeded in establishing the special status of religious schools in our country. However, the emphasis on Catholic education was again challenged as Catholics started to take their place in the Middle Class and join professions when the demands for intellectual rigour increased but still Catholic Schools maintained there status. Catholic Grammar Schools emerged and flourished. Then, everything changed; the state overturned many of the charitable and social activities of the Church as organised nationalised state welfare became available. Individual charity died as the state provided. The state provided schools for everyone; hospitals for everyone; economic support for everyone. If you made bad choices the state without judging supported you; one child born out of wedlock not enough to validate your lack of self worth? Well then have another to make yourself feel better.
    Why this rant? When this was happening, the Church engaged in a prolonged and all too often fruitless contemplation of its own navel (incidentally the inspiration for my nom de plume) the clarity of the church's teaching was obscured by passion about which way the priest faced and severing the chains of history which hitherto had been so very important. I was born into this world and much of my pedagogical experience was not so much apologetics as apology. Church as institution was bad, men were bad etc.
    More worrying we see the insidious feminisation of parishes: women as extraordinary ministers of holy communion, women as readers, women as altar servers. Some come to understanding through reading, more come to understanding by listening but most come to understanding by watching. What is the difference between a lady conducting a service of the word with holy communion and a Deacon taking a similar service? They both stand apart from the crowd, they both sit while someone else reads the lessons, they both stand at the lectern, ambo, table of the word to read the Good News, they both say the same words to the congregation and follow the same actions at communion and afterwards. the only difference appears to be that when he preaches she shares her thoughts!
    Summary: education may be the solution to some problems but is also the source of many others! What we need now is prayer, prayer and more prayer.

  9. OPN, yes I fully accept all you say and, indeed a Rosary Crusade is at the heart of what I am proposing but, to quote an old but true saying: "God helps those who helps themselves" and, Our Lord Himself told us that it was not enough just to pray.Prayer and action, action and prayer. Omphalomancer, yes, education is the foundation to all that must take place and prayers are the building blocks. Thanks Sandy, Anon, Elaine and thanks Michael, twenty more like you and we can return England (and Wales) to Our Lady. Shadowlands - woof, woof!

  10. FWIW in Germany 480% Growth Since SP: http://eponymousflower.blogspot.com/2010/07/balance-after-three-years-of-motu.html

  11. I think that your statistic is way out. If you consider all the priests of:-
    the Fraternity of St Peter,
    the Institute of Christ the King,
    the Institute of the Good Shephard,
    and add to them all the monks of traditional orders throughout the world, together with all the other priests who have taken the trouble to learn the EF,
    you must easily be talking of 1000 priests. On average they will say at least one EF mass each Sunday.

    You could add to this more than 500 priests of the SSPX.

    I think that your figure of 470 could relate to the USA alone. In England and Wales, we have about 50 Sunday Masses in the EF.

  12. Et Expecto - not my statistic but you could well be right. Even so, it's a drop in the ocean. In Wales we are fortunate to have one EF Sunday Mass.