Thursday, August 12, 2004


So far it's always been a good day when an archdiocese decides to grant an indult to the Tridentine Mass, but what happens when it's done as a form of religious marketing, a way of keeping up with the Lutherans and Episcopalians?
Nevertheless, he and St. Josaphat's pastor, the Rev. Mark Borkowski, have been impressed by successes at nearby Episcopal and Lutheran churches, where historic buildings have been revived by suburbanites driving downtown for traditional forms of worship.
"We're bringing in antique-looking vestments, too," he said. "We've done a lot of work to make sure that this looks authentic. This church was built a century ago for this kind of mass, and we want it to look that way again."
"Authenticity," he said. "If someone goes to Greenfield Village expecting to see petticoats, they don't want to find people making do with blue jeans."
Just when you thought the traditional Mass was impervious to bourgeois commercialism. Makes me think of MacIntyre's opening hypo in After Virtue about a society born after a revolution against science & technology, trying to piece it back together with no context, no cultural glue to hold the pieces in proper perspective.

Even more disturbing are the comments of Fr. Thomas Reese, editor of America magazine:
The only thing that could spoil the venture at St. Josaphat is too much success, Reese said.

"When the pope authorized bishops to allow this mass in 1984, the idea was that this was a pastoral response to older people who still are so attached to this older mass that they need it," Reese said Monday. "The idea was never to create a new desire in people for this mass."

Maida's decision to allow it at St. Josaphat seems in keeping with the spirit of Vatican rules, Reese said. But, "It would be counterproductive if too many people turn this into a marketing strategy to fill churches. The idea behind allowing this mass was that it could help older people in the later stages of their lives. The hope is that this mass eventually will fade away."
I've come to accept this kind of condescending crap from the liberal secularist literati, but from a priest-editor of a Jesuit magazine? And St. Ignatius does another roll in his tomb. Read more here.