Monsignor Steenson Continues to Express Enmity Toward the Extraordinary Form

UPDATE (10:15 AM EDT): Rorate Cæli, the highly esteemed web site for Traditional Catholics, are also covering these developments in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, and I have been conferring with their top moderators making sure that we get the most accurate information possible to the faithful.

* * *

In an recent statement from Monsignor Jeffrey Steenson (my emphasis):

"We have therefore asked that the congregations of the Ordinariate follow this direction. Some of our clergy want to learn also how to celebrate according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. They are certainly encouraged to do so, under the provisions of Summorum Pontificum and under the supervision of the local bishop, to assist in those stable communities that use the Extraordinary Form. But as the Extrordinary Form is not integral to the Anglican patrimony, it is not properly used in our communities. The Ordinariate will remain focused on bringing Christians in the Anglican tradition into full communion with the Catholic Church. We also are pleased that the Church has provided for the continuing use of the Extraordinary Form, particularly as a pastoral response to traditional Catholics, and regard all of this as a well-ordered symphony of praise to the Blessed Trinity."

I have it on unimpeachable authority that there is on ongoing crackdown on those AU/Ordinariate priests who would dare to learn or celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite on the part of Steenson, Hurd, and Chalmers. The affected priests are naturally frightened, and unwilling to go on record, but make no mistake, the leadership of the U.S. Ordinariate at present has set itself against both Summorum Pontificum and Anglicanorum coetibus. I also have it on good authority that this intimidation, an abuse of power, is being reported directly to the Roman Authorities. And the contention that the traditional Latin Mass has no bearing on the Anglican Patrimony — this simply has me flabbergasted. Is there just a shortsightedness on the part of the Ordinary, or is he ignorant of the history of English Catholicism?

Author: Christian Clay Columba Campbell

Christian Clay Columba Campbell is a Roman Catholic of the Anglican Use. As Senior Warden of the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Orlando, FL), he organized the process by which the parish accepted the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus, petitioning to join the Catholic Church. The Anglican Cathedral is now the Church of the Incarnation in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. He is also the CEO of Three Fish Consulting, LLC, an Information Technology consultancy based in Orlando, FL. He can be reached via email at ccampbell at threefish dot co.

53 thoughts on “Monsignor Steenson Continues to Express Enmity Toward the Extraordinary Form”

  1. Anglicanism was birthed as a protest against the Latin Mass… both its sacrificial nature and the fact it was not in the vernacular. The Latin Mass was thrown out by the Anglican reformers, including the Latin Mass in its Sarum usage (essentiuaally 99 per cent identical with the Latin Mass). I'm with Monsignor Steenson on this… the Latin Mass has NO place in the Anglican patrimony.

    1. The Tridentine Mass is not Anglican. The Ordinary is indeed correct. The Sarum was used by the English but it just influenced the Anglican liturgy. The Tridentine Mass of course influenced a certain tradition in Anglicanism but we have to recall that by and large this tradition was in defiance of the Anglican bishops. And Anglicanism being what it is just looked the other way. The Ordinariate cannot afford similar defiance at this stage of its development. And Rome resists suggestions to authorize these Tridentine rites in English since they were never authorized by the Anglican Church. Rome values obedience to authority.

      Msgr Steenson is just being Roman and no longer the Anglican/Episcopal he was. He expects obedience from his priests. I don't think this is surprising at all.

      But of course the EF will not be the norm in the Ordinariates as in the majority of the :Latin dioceses. The Pope has recognized this due to many language and the "actual situation of the communities of the faithful now present". Here the situation of the former Anglicans must be considered. I don't think the Ordinariate priests will be forbidden to celebrate in the EF. There will always be a need for the EF but this won't be widespread.

      1. The Ordinary lacks the authority to refuse the EF to his clergy. Both it and the NO are always and everywhere an option for any priest under Summ. Pontif. — a motu proprio of the supreme legislative authority in the Church.

    2. This is a truly disturbing comment. Have you become a Catholic and yet deny the Sacrificial nature of the Mass? And are you by implication saying that the Ordinary Form of Mass is best for the Church because it lacks a Sacrificial nature? Popes have repudiated such views.

    3. I find Mr. William's comment re "sacrificial nature" most disturbing: that is a Protestant and not an Anglo-Catholic mode of thinking. I must be honest as many in Mother Church have been misled into a watering-down of the essence of The Mass, by changes arising out of the NOM. I presume the ASB and RC NOM are similar

      1. "…a Protestant and not an Anglo-Catholic mode of thinking."
        Ah, the return of the thought police!

    4. To take the most extreme elements of the English Reformation as the normative expression of Anglicanism is absurd.

      The point of Tract 90 was that all the developments of the Council of Trent were available to the Church of England, even while subscribing to the 39 Articles.

      This may not have been a popular position, but it was important to Anglopapalists.

      It was the germ of both those (very few) parishes and institutions that used the Latin Tridentine rite tout court before the Novus Ordo, and those who adopted the Novus Ordo — i.e. use the "Western Rite."

      It was also the inspiration for productions such as the English Missal that added, anglice, all they could from the Tridentine Rite.

      All of this is part of the rich and varied Anglican patrimony. I have belonged to parishes in which Latin liturgies were commonly offered and in which no liturgy did not have substantial Romanizing additions or alterations. That had been the case for many decades.

      Mr Williams' extremely simplified and entirely Protestant reading of the Tradition is obscurant and offensive. Sadly, it appears to be shared in great part by the leaders of the US Ordinariate.

      1. "But as the Extrordinary Form is not integral to the Anglican patrimony, it is not properly used in our communities."

        This is, to the first part, simply untrue and, to the second part, unpleasantly bullying.

      2. The extreme elements of the English Reformation you make reference to is actualy Cranmer himself.

        A fundamental of Anglican Reformation settlement was that the liturgy of the BCP should be in the vernacular.
        I believe sometimes in the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge, and in the Church of Ireland the BCP communion service was said for a while in Latin. Once the latter had translated the BCP into Irish it was dropped.

        Yes a few dotty Anglo-Catholics ( not the vast majority of them ) used Latin..but this occured only after 1880.

        I thought the Ordinariates were claiming an Anglican patrimony and not an Anglo-Papalist one.

      3. "All of this is part of the rich and varied Anglican patrimony."
        Quite right. But the management (on both sides) are saying, "Bring your patrimony, but wait for us to tell you what it is." (See the discussion about the AV passim.)

    5. The "Latin Mass" is still authorized in the Church of England and is offered each term at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. The Book of Common Prayer 1662 is in both English and Latin. So the Latin liturgy is definitely part of the Anglican Patrimony. The sound (Protestant) principle is that the liturgy should be celebrated in a language understood by the people. Nashdom Abbey used to celebrate the Mass and Office in Latin (Roman rite, not BCP!) except in 1964 when the Archbishop of Canterbury came for a visit. After the Council they started using the Roman Mass in English (but, as I recall, they did use some authorized Anglican liturgy for the Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity).

        1. Yes there is (Liber Precum Communium). When I sent an email note to an on-line bookseller who had misidentified a copy of it I received a reply thanking me for the correction, but pointing out that it had already been sold–to the Vatican library.

  2. Well, okay… If the Ordinariate Authority says that priests of the Ordinariates who want to learn the Extraordinary Form (TLM) are encouraged (and, goes without saying, allowed) to do so- This public statement will make him accountable for doing what is contrary to what he says.

    As a Roman Catholic, I can also respect Msgr. Steenson's desire to protect the importance of the Anglican liturgy- He loves it, I love it, everyone in this blog loves it- no problems there.

    I really don't see anything wrong with what's being said- in fact it's more of a clarification from a previous statement, I think. And I have no proof that what is being done by the leadership is contrary to what is being said, so I'll leave that up to people who are qualified to do what must be done, if they know something's wrong.

    I have a feeling that the lines of battle for tradition will continue even in the Ordinariates. We should not be surprised; the good fight is only over once we're in Heaven.

    God bless the Ordinariates.
    Our Lady of Walsingham, Pray for us!

  3. I'm sorry but Msgr. Steenson's statement is wrong. Ordinariate priests are free to offer the Traditional Latiin Mass and are not required to do so "under the supervision of the local Roman bishop". Ordinariate priests are completely free to offer this Mass under the terms of A.C. Art. III. Period. They need not even inform the local Roman bishop or Msgr. Steenson, let alone seek the permission of either. The supervisory functions regarding the liturgy belong to the proper ordinary in the case of ordinariate priests, and not to the local ordinary. Msgr. Steenson can see to it that the celebrants are properly qualified under the terms of S.P.: it is not for the local bishops to do this at all in the case of ordinariate priests. Ordinariate priests belong to the ordinariate.

    If this is to become a problem, I suggest that incoming TAC priests simply opt to form personal parishes or quasi-parishes or chaplaincies, except where the local bishop is hostile. I hope that these fears are being exaggerated here. Msgr. Steenson seems to be a very pleasant and charitable man. I hope that he is.


    1. Peter, I believe you misread Msgr. Steenson's statement. He was referring to Ordinariate Priests offering the EF Mass for "to assist in those stable communities that use the Extraordinary Form", that is, for people who are not members of the Ordinariate. In which case, an Ordinariate priest, would appropriately be under the supervision of the diocesan bishop, as the people of those "stable communities" would be the diocesan's subjects. This is similar to a priest needing a celebret in order to offer the sacrifice when traveling to a different diocese.

      1. No, Mr. Cavanaugh, I did not misread Msgr. Steenson, for he added to the passage quoted by you the following:

        "But as the Extrordinary Form is not integral to the Anglican patrimony, it is not properly used in our communities.

        He seems to be saying, therefore, that the T.L.M. is not to be (or, at least, should not be) used in Anglican Use communities and, when used in T.L.M. communities, it must be done under the supervision of the local bishop. The latter part is not at issue. The stable groups being referred to are those mentioned in Article 5 of S.P. However, any Latin Church priest, whether of the Ordinariate or not, may offer the T.L.M. even publicly on his own initiative, without there having been a petition under Article 5. This is because Article 5 is not resrictive: it nowhere says that such Masses may be offered publicly *only* if a stable group petitions for them. Reference to Article 1 of S.P., read together with §1 of Canon 837 means that all Latin priests have a general right to offer the T.L.M., and parish priests have the authority to do so publicly in parishes or to invite other priests to do so.

        So an Ordinariate Parish Priest has a right to offer the T.L.M. publicly in his Ordinariate Parish (or community or chaplaincy). When he does so, the supervisory faculties mentioned in Canon 838 belong to Msgr. Steenson, not to the local bishop. Is Msgr. Steenson denying this? He is saying that the T.L.M. does not "properly" belong to the Ordinariate community and yet the New Roman Mass in non-sacral English does (for he mentions this in the next paragraph). I see his words as being at least a very stong discouragement to those of his priests who want to offer the T.L.M. in addition to Anglican Use Masses. There should be no such persecution of the Traditional Latin Mass. He is wrong in his assessment: unlike the New Roman Mass, the T.L.M. is integral to the Anglican patrimony, in the same way that the trunk of a tree is integral to the branch.


  4. If Msgr. Steenson proves to be a problem, I suggest that Canadian TAC communities simply opt to join the Australian ordinariate instead. This is perfectly possible in Catholic Canon Law. The Australian ordinary, Msgr. Entwistle, is a former TAC bishop. He might prove more welcoming.

    Personal Ordinariates are personal structures. The American one exists only in the U.S.A.; the Australian one, only in Australia. But those living out of the territory of an episcopal conference can join any Ordinariate that will take them. Why not? Why this 'need' to be joined at the hip to the Americans? I suggest the English ordinariate but it's led by the FiFers. In this case, the Aussie one might be the best option for former TACers.


    1. "I suggest that Canadian TAC communities simply opt to join the Australian ordinariate instead. This is perfectly possible in Catholic Canon Law."

      Can you cite the particular statute that would permit this, or are you just making this up?

      1. Can you cite the Canon that would not permit it, or are you just making up the objection? Yes, I could cite canons and articles from A.C. I'll leave that to others. There is nothing in law anywhere saying that someone outside the territory must belong to a nearer personal ordinariate rather than a farther one A personal jurisdiction pertains primarily to persons, no matter where they live.


    2. "…it's led by the FiFers."
      Patrimony-seekers, look elsewhere, at least for the time being. Perhaps conditions will change.

  5. Fr John Hunwicke offers the Mass in Latin, does he not? – and indeed he did so even while still an Anglican!

    While evidently it is fairly unlikely that incoming Anglicans are already used to worship in Latin, they of course have the same rights as any Catholic to ask for Mass in that form: to them, too, Summorum Pontificum applies. After all, Anglicanorum cœtibus itself talks of "not excluding celebrations according to the Roman Rite", which the same author notes, in Summorum Pontificum, that the Roman Rite has two forms: the Ordinary, and the Extraordinary.

    Furthermore, while Mgr Steenson speaks of the Book of Divine Worship's Rite I, it is well-known that many US incomers would prefer a combination of the 1928 US BCP and the traditional Roman Missal (whether referred to as the Anglican, or English, or Knox Missal, or whatever), in "sacral" English of course – but not to the exclusion, methinks, of Latin.

  6. I get the impression you think he's acting contrary to the Vatican, but he references the Vatican in his statement. In fact, isn't the new head of Ecclessia Dei been involved in approving the liturgical norms for the Ordinariate? That was said when the marriage rite was put out.

  7. I do not see how the statement put out by the Ordinariate today cannot reasonably be called an expression of "enmity" toward the TLM.

    The reported hostility from the Ordinariate leadership that Christian reports could be called enmity, but again, we have not actual witnesses being brought forth, no detailed report of this "intimidation", and this report amounts to no more than hearsay. I question the value of posting it at all; if Christian has had reports such as he says, he is well within his rights to assist those priests who are being intimidated to seek help from the authorities in Rome, but if those priests are not willing to speak publicly, then it would be better to not publicize this via second- and third-hand reports. It leads to a vast amount of speculation that does no one any good.

    Msgr Steenson, vis-a-vis the Extraordinary Form within Ordinariate communities, may well have the example of Good Shepherd, Columbia SC in mind. A bit over a year ago on this blog, Fr. Phillips noted in answer to a question about that community:

    The situation in Columbia was very different. For some reason, Fr. Ladkau had no desire to use our liturgy, and really didn't want to be part of the Anglican Use. As a married priest, he was ordained through the Pastoral Provision, but that was as far as it went. Apparently his congregation was happy with this, because none of us in the A. U. have ever heard anything from them or about them.

    Perhaps Msgr. Steenson sees that result as a possibility for an Ordinariate community that adopted the Extraordinary Form as its typical worship?

    Any community of Anglicans entering the full communion of the Catholic Church who feel led by the Holy Spirit to worship via the Extraordinary Form on a regular basis can certainly do so, but why would they then enter the Ordinariate? Would it not make more sense to enter via the Pastoral Provision and then so order their worship. When I travel to St. Athanasius in Boston, I would not want to find that we were not using the Book of Divine Worship, but instead were using the 1962 Missal. I could travel 2 miles down the road and assist at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes or go downtown to the Cathedral to worship with the EF, and chant, etc. I say this as someone who leads a Latin schola.

    Certainly, the EF is part of the Anglican Patrimony; but as inspiration, not as the actual liturgy. The (liturgical) Anglican Patrimony that Anglicanorum coetibus seeks to welcome into Catholic communion is the fruit of a long process of re-appropriation of Catholic spirituality that went beyond the authorized liturgies in the BCPs of 1662 and 1559 to that of the 1549 BCP and also to the Latin Missals, which resulted in the 1928 & 1979 US BCPs and the Anglican Missals.

    1. All good points Mr. Cavanaugh.

      A question for liturgical historians/scholars out there. What does precedent tell us with, for example, those chapels that are using the Ambrosian or Mozarabic Rites? Those priests have every right to use the 62 Missal under SP, same as everyone else, do they not? But to what extent can the Milanese or Toledan archbishops say…wait a second…if the laity is expecting X liturgy at this chapel, you must give them X liturgy?

    2. Steve, I think it is the status of the various Anglican Missals that is the main issue here. If Ordinariate priests had a clear notion of what they could use and not use in terms of minor propers, and elements of older usages, like the Asperges and the Last Gospel, this would go a long way towards providing for an "extraordinary" celebration of the BDW Rite I. It seems odd that such a directory did not come before a ham-handed decree on the status of the EF.

    3. I would think that some ordinariate priests, who are primarily attached to the Anglican Use, might also want to offer the T.L.M. The two are not in any way incompatible. The question is whether or not they have a right to do so as ordinariate priests, even publicly. If an ordinariate priest has said his main Mass in the A.U. at 10.00 a.m., may he proceed to schedule a T.L.M. at noon in his church? Unless his p.o. uses Canon 905 to restrict the number of his daily Masses to one, the answer is positive. Also, I don't see how the local Roman ordinary would have a supervisory function for this under Canon 838 §4, as the matter is not listed as a function of the local bishop in A.C. or its Suppelmentary norms. Presumably, the supervisory functions of Canon 838 fall to Msgr. Steenson over his own priests.


  8. I believe the following link contains the Rite I Eucharist from the BDW with the necessary alterations Msgr. Steenson has in mind:

    Does anyone know if at Mass we're suppose to be using the collects in the BDW or the ones listed in the liturgical Ordo for the English Ordinariate? The collect for the feast of the Transfiguration in the BDW is better than the one in the Ordo.

    1. The liturgy to which you link is only the local use for St. Michael's Philadelphia. The English customary does not apply here, so we use the collects in the BDW (traditional version) or those in the current OF Missale Romanum.

  9. While the Latin Mass may not have an established role within a specifically Anglican (as opposed to English Catholic) patrimony, the simple fact of the matter is that priests in the Ordinariates are Roman Catholic priests, and as such they have all the rights of Roman Catholic priests under Church law. Those rights include the right to publicly say, without retaliation from their Ordinary, the Mass in Latin, in both the Ordinary (Novus Ordo) and Extraordinary (Tridentine Mass) forms. While the Anglican liturgical patrimony is a glorious thing — a treasure that the Latin Rite is blessed to have within it now — it is not something to the exclusion of the established liturgical forms of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church. One of the challenges for some of the folks (and only some) in the Ordinariates is to understand that they are now part of a universal, as opposed to strictly particular, Church, and as such their freedom of action in regard to liturgical matters is restricted by the norms of the universal Church. Each Ordinary is not his own little Pope — above each Ordinary is the Pope as the Servant of the Servant of God and the protector of the Magisterium of the Church. The Pope has decreed that each and every Catholic priest of the Latin Rite has the right — the right, not the privilege — of saying the Mass in Latin in either the Novus Ordo or Tridentine form. The Ordinariates are not a separate Rite of the Church — there is no "Anglican Rite" — they are part of the Latin Rite, and as such the general discipline of the Latin Rite (with some exceptions like priestly celibacy) applies to them.

    1. Well said.

      As it stands, any priest of the ordinariate may say a private mass according to the EF, which the faithful may attend. Msgr. Steenson's decision is basically that, given the nature of the Anglican patrimony, no coetus of the faithful attached to the EF could exist as part of the Ordinariate, and therefore there could be no need for the EF as a publicly scheduled mass of an ordinariate congregation. That is the logic of his position.

      One can disagree with this interpretation. I would, on practical grounds. At my latest reckoning more people who have come into the Catholic Church from Anglicanism now attend the EF in Philadelphia than attend St. Michael's. (This is disturbing to me, as frankly we need all the warm bodies we can get, if we are to survive.) So I think we can safely say that there was something about the Anglican Patrimony as experienced by these people that was closer to the EF than to the current Anglican Use mass. This *should* cause us to rethink how we are defining the patrimony.

      1. This is a useful empirical observation.

        I think one could safely say that almost none of those joining the Ordinariates anywhere have come from communities in which the middle-of-the-road Anglican liturgies were the norm.

        The first time I attended a Roman Catholic service that approximated the Anglican ethos I was brought up in was when I attended an SSPX chapel. The mass, apart from having more Latin, was entirely familiar in form and feeling to what I was used to. I had felt distinctly out of place in the Novus Ordo parishes I had attended up to that point.

        If the Ordinariates aim to create an ideal "mere Anglicanism" set of parishes, they will alienate those who are their natural core constituency.

        1. "If the Ordinariates aim to create an ideal "mere Anglicanism" set of parishes, they will alienate those who are their natural core constituency."
          But, in England, if they don't also set out to attract the mainstream would-be BCP Anglicans who are neglected in the C of E, they will fail in their mission.

    2. Exactly right. I've quoted the 'sources' on this before but will not jump up to check them instantly just to appease some blogger here. But Article 5 of S.P. is frequently misread. Nowhere does the adverb "only" appear in it: a priest of the Latin Church may offer the T.L.M. publicly for petitioners for it in parishes, but not 'only' if they have lodged a petition. To discover if he may do it on his own initiative, even publicly, one must consult Art. 1 and cf. with Canon 837 §1 (to my recollecion): Masses are public by nature (cf. 901, or 902, I think). So unless there are specific restrictions in law (and there are no general restrictions), a priest may proceed to offer the T.L.M., even publicly, without even informing his ordinary, and certainly does not need his permission. There are canons regarding general liturgical supervision being in the hands of the ordinary (§4 of Canon 838 I think from memory but have not checked) but, given Art. III of A.C., I would think that this would put these powers in the hands of the Msgr. Steenson for his subjects, not the local bishop. This seems to be suggested by the terms of Art. III of A.C. and the last clause of Art. IV. Essentially, the powers of the local bishop are held for his subjects by the personal ordinary, except to the extend specified otherwise in A.C.

      I would want to wait for clarifications from Msgr. Steenson before jumping to conclusions about this. I note, though, that the powers of the ordinary to supervise the liturgy in regard to the Traditional Latin Mass are mostly subordinated to the P.C.E.D. under Articles 9 to 11 of "Universæ Ecclesiæ". But, as far as I can see, this should not come up in the first place. Since power over liturgy is not given in A.C. to the local bishops, they would apparently have no jurisdiction in this matter over ordinariate priests. In other words, the supervisory immediate power over celebrating the T.L.M. would be held by the personal ordinary, not the local bishop, in the first place, in the case of an ordinariate priest. So I'm not sure why he is quoted here (or is this a paraphrase) saying that the supervision is to be done by the local diocesan bishop.

      Msgr. Steenson could manipulate Canon 905 to make it difficult for an ordinariate priest to offer the T.L.M.; that is, he could restrict him to just one Mass per day and then assign him to say some other Mass in a pastoral assignment. Apb. Brunett of Seattle once threatened to do this, and so have some other bishops. The powers of a diocesan bishop over his priests are very large, and most of these are in the hands of Msgr. Steenson in the case of the ordinariate for the U.S.A. In the case of Canada, for example, there would be nothing to stop groups from applying for membership in the Australian ordinariate if they find the American one to be unwelcoming. However, the episcopal conferences could get involved' in submissions to Rome. They could also opt to apply to their local bishops to remain as communities of the local diocese.

      Before all this gets out of control, the situation needs clarification. There are the usual cautionary hounds on this blog who say that there is never anything to worry about but, on the other side, it is certainly possible that the liberal establishment in AmChurch conspired to put their man over the ordinariate in order to keep the T.L.M. at bay. It must concern some liberal prelates that an ordinariate has considerable jurisdiction in an entire country. If a p.o. can put an Anglican Use Mass anywhere in the U.S.A., can he also have the Traditional Latin Mass said anywhere in any diocese by his priests? This will no doubt 'concern' some.


      P.S. The text in this box jumps all over. Better to cut and paste from another file. I apologise if the ordering of ideas is sloppy.

  10. What is manifestly bizarre to me is that Msgr. Steenson felt the need to publish a statement at all regarding the TLM and the Ordinariate communities. There are hundreds of pressing issues that need to be dealt with and Msgr. Steenson spends his time poking a stick in the eyes of friends. He has immediately alienated numerous potential allies in the fight against liturgical chaos and caused unnnecessary discord.

    1. I believe that all of the evidence points to Msgr. Steenson issuing this statement in direct response to reports here on The Anglo-Catholic. There would be no other reason to do so; the plight of certain AU priests desirous of, or currently celebrating, the TLM had not been publicly aired anywhere else but on this blog. Interestingly, his statement only backs-up our reporting and he has not, to my knowledge, denied the specific characterisations of the TLM and TLM communities that he shared with me in Orlando earlier this year.

      1. I think you are all crazy. Why on earth would one want the EF of the Mass as part of the Anglican Ordinariate. If you want a Latin Mass join the Latin Mass crowd not the Ordinariate. If I join the ordinariate or even just visit then I would expect an Anglican-style liturgy not a TLM. I will go to the Church of the TLM groups if I want to hear the Mass in Latin. Souls are going to Hell while you lot fight pointess battles over liturgies. I think the ordinariates need more Evangelical and Charismatic background Anglicans rather than too many so-called Anglo-Catholics that never seem to be happy with anything but squabbling over ceremonies. The Mass is the Mass is the Mass. Let's evangelise and bring a hurting world into the Eucharistic Presence of Jesus.

        1. The Catholic Church is a church of diverse charisms expressing a single Faith. You may be right. All the charisms are complementary. No charism is above the others and none are equal to any other. Surely the Traditional Charism in Latin has its place as so the Traditional Charism in Anglican expression. So too is the charismatic and even evangelical.

          1. I agree with you. Each has its place in its right context but this mix all up in some kind of spiritual hodge podge is what I find fruitless. An Anglican ordinariate should be focused on the Anglican traditions and inheritance. I don't need them to offer me a Latin Mass in the context of the ordinariate. If an ordiniariate priests wishes to celebrate a Latin Mass for a Latin Mass group then I have no problem with that , just the same if they fill in at the local Novus Ordo Mass. When one attends a Marian Cenacle -then it should be the authentic style and spirituality of the Cenacles not a mixture of a charismatic meeting or some other devotion or revelations. Just as I don't want to suddenly pray the Rosary or Divine Mercy in a Charismatic praise meeting. If one wished to prepare for the Charismatic meeting with a rosary or chaplet then that is great but the actual meeting should not mix spiritualities. It causes spiritual confusion. Just as the documents of the Church warn the Eastern rites to be careful of adopting too many Romanisms in their liturgies and even calls them to purify their rites to return to their authentic traditions so the Anglican ordinariates should be focused on the unique aspects of the Anglican inheritance.

        2. Dear Brother Gilbert:

          Why on earth would one want the New Roman Mass in the ordinariates? It has nothing to do with the Ordinariate patrimony. So why does Msgr. Steenson welcome it while effectively obstructing the T.L.M.? Look, if, after having said his Sunday Anglican Use Mass for his people, an Ordinariate priest wants to offer a public T.L.M., what's it to you?


  11. I'm an outsider, Antiochian Orthodox Western Rite Vicariate, and to me the use of 62 Latin Mass is an interesting question but the really significant issue is contained in these two quotes from Msgr Steenson.
    "The Book of Divine Worship Rite I should be amended to bring it into conformity with the Roman Missal 3rd edition, particularly the words of Consecration. For those congregations that prefer a contemporary idiom, the Roman Missal 3rd edition could be used." I realize that I may be mixing apples (Anglican Use) and oranges (Ordinariate) here. Is he referring to the Novus Ordo Missal 3rd edition meaning the new corrected translation and is he referring to incorporating it’s multiple Canons?
    “This liturgical identity seeks to balance two historic principles — that Christian prayer and proclamation should be offered in the vernacular and that the language of worship should be sacral. This is what Anglicans understand when they speak of the prayer book tradition.”Sacral language is a very loose phrase and I personaly do not think the modern idiom fits the bill for Ordinariate sacral language which is supposed to contain the Anglican Patrimony. I realize the Msgr Burnham in GB is a contempory idiom man.
    In the Antiochian WR we use either the pre-55 Tridentine Rite Mass with traditional prayer book English or the Tikhon Usage Mass which is a Knott or American Missal Mass with a very significantly corrected Canon. Any hints of “receptionism” or a non-sacrificial liturgy are purged.
    I guess I am saying all this to say that it looks like the very definite possiblity of a slippery slope in this.

  12. This statement shows that the Ordinary is like many Catholic Ordinaries in that he does not bother to have his statements on the rights of the clergy reviewed by a competent canonist before issuing them.

  13. Dear Dale,
    You are not exactly an outsider to us, Catholics, but rather a cherished brother of the same Apostolic Church which like any living body breathes with TWO lungs. The post-schism Orthodox saints are venerated in the Eastern churches of Catholicism. Most of their Eastern theology has been preserved as well, gratias Deo! So nearly all of what Byzantines believe and express so beautifully (in a positive perspective resonant of scripture, Eastern Fathers and the perspicacious philosophy of the Greeks) we R.C.'s also are bound to believe.

    There is still too much ignorance of the East among us Westerners.

    I had the good fortune to receive much of the Eastern Catholic viewpoints at the high-school level since my Franciscan professors presented us with
    both the Latin and Byzantine approaches to Catholic truth. Wisdom came from the East.

    At the deep structure, in the love of Christ, in His sacred Heart, as we Westerns would say we are one!

    God Bless You,

    1. When John Paul II spoke of "the Church" as "breathing with two lungs" he was not referring to the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church. Rather, by "the Church" he meant, rightly as Catholics believe, "those in peace and communion with the See of Peter," and by the "two lungs" he meant the Latin, or Western, Church, on the one hand, and, on the other, the various Eastern Catholic churches. Perhaps one may loosely — very loosely, IMO — apply that term to the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church (although almost all Orthodox that I am acquainted with object to such terminology, believing that the Orthodox Church, and not the Catholic Church, is "the Church"), but that is not what the late Pope of blessed memory meant by it.

      1. I don't think John Paul II was concerned at all about the outward structures and institutions of the Western or Eastern churches but the Western spirituality and the Eastern spirituality-these are the two lungs or at least the breath in the two lungs that the Church needs to flourish in love and to reach a hurting broken world.

  14. Mr Tighe I have been unable to find anything definitive on the question. However here is an opposing perspective from a chatroom.
    "In an address to the Eastern Orthodox Archbishop of Cyprus, Pope Benedict XVI invoked the language of Pope John Paul II and clearly refers to the Eastern Orthodox Church as one of the two lungs of the Church:

    "Thank you, Your Beatitude, for this gesture of esteem and brotherly friendship. In you, I greet the Pastor of an ancient and illustrious Church, a shining tessera of that bright mosaic, the East, which, to use a favourite phrase of the Servant of God John Paul II of venerable memory, constitutes one of the two lungs with which the Church breathes."…mos-ii_en.html

    "Thanks for that post. I think reading with understanding goes a long way. It is precisely clear that the language of this piece shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that Pope Benedict interprets what John Paul said exactly the way others who have stated that the Two Lungs refer to the EO and CC."
    There are of course Ultramontane Orthodox who fit the "most" characterization.which you gave.

  15. One of the things that everyone appears to have forgotten is that while all Catholic priests are permitted to use the OF and EF Latin mass, there is a liturgical traning requirement. Unfortunately, in recent years very many seminaries gave only lip service to the requirement that all priests should have Latin and likewise liturgical training for the EF form use in particualer was dropped. Because a priest should not use a particular form before he has been trained to do it properly, in the UK and, I suppose in the USA, there are organisations (such as the Latin Mass Society) which offer the necessary liturgical traning.

    All of Mgr Steenson's priests are still in training. They can only offer Mass at all as Catholic priests because Ordination comes much earlier in the study cycle than it does in a normal diocesan seminary (or for that matter in the shorter programs for former Anglicans under the Pastroal Provision in the USA or similar diocesan programmes in the UK). This is to make the period while they cannot minister sacramentally to members of a group joining with them as brief as possible.

    I note that Mgr Steenson's statement refers to the possibility of Ordinariate priests taking a proper liturigical training course approved by diocesans and I think that is a good idea. Ideally, every Catholic priest who did not get proper EF liturgical training should do so. But also, it would be a quite proper exercise of his responsibility to see to it that all his priests are properly trained to say that his priests should not celebrate in the EF before having the proper liturgical training.

    When one of the Canadian bishops receved an Ordinariate group he celebrated using the BDW. But he took care to have a practice run first. The principle that no liturgy should be celebrated without proper training (and I would say without periodic refresher courses) is a good one – and it would be no bad thing if more diocesans pushed the need to have better liturgical practices – in whaetver form
    – higher up their list of "things to do".

    1. Not all of Fr Steenson's priests are still in training, as the first priest incardinated in the Ordinariate was Fr. Bergman formerly of the Diocese of Scranton. This issue came up due to Fr. Bergman having to go back on a lease he had agreed upon to have allowed an Academy that had formerly been under the FSSP to rent the parish's school facility for one year, while he would act as their chaplain to say Mass. I don't believe there is any problem with Fr. Bergman being properly trained in the EF Mass, it would seem that Msgr. Steenson did not want the Traditional School and their Daily Mass on the parish (Ordinariate) property insinuating some connection beyond landlord/tenant.

      While Msgr. Steenson's statement does not directly refer to the situation at St. Thomas More, it would seem that it was the announcement of that decision that led to this whole discussion. I believe that the EF Mass was also already being used at the Baltimore parish recently received into the Catholic Church. It doesn't seem that there is a question of whether or not the priest there has been properly trained, merely whether they should be offering iit.

    2. The supervision for proper training, coming from Canon 838 and references in S.P. in the case of the Traditonal Latin Mass, belongs to the ordinary. As A.C. does not make exception in its Complementary norms, Msgr. Steenson has the supervisory authority for this over his own priests, not the local bishops. It would be unusal for an ordinary to abrogate his powers in favour of another ordinary in respect of his own men. After all, the personal ordinary is the shepherd of his priests and people.

      Latin is the lingua sacra of the Latin Church, and all priests of that Church have a general right to offer Mass in that tongue. For example, an ordinariate priest may offer the New Mass in Latin without seeking supervision from anyone. It is true that his ordinary could act to ensure that he pronounces the words properly and knows their meaning and knows the rubrics. In the same way, a Ukrainian Byzantine priest has a general right to offer the Divine and Holy Liturgy in his liturgical language, Church Slavonic. An Ethiopian priest has a general right to offer Mass in Ge'ez; Coptic for an Egyptian Alexandrian priest. It would be unthinkable to deny this and, in fact, a priest deemed unable to offer in his lingua sacra could argue that he was cheated at seminary and could demand to be trained properly and at the expense of his diocese.

      On Msgr. Steenson in general, I have heard only good things locally. I have heard some negative reports on these blogs, and then, in that context, arose this quotation about the T.L.M. and the use of a non-sacral form of English for the lections. One also hears of complaints about Msgr. Steenson's leadership down there, down south of the 49th parallel. I hope that these rumours are mistaken and I really am praying for the success of the Ordinariate and for Msgr. Steenson. It simply will not serve any of us well to have all this dispute. There is enough trouble to begin with in the Church these days. What we need is unity among traditionalists, whether Latin or Anglican Use, and between the two. Frankly, some of this negative news is causing me distress. As a Latin traditionalist, I and my fellows are having difficulty enough with the S.S.PX negotiations not going well. More trouble is not welcome. So I hope that Msgr. Steenson will be charitable and good and support the desire of some of his priests to pray the Traditional Latin Mass as well as Anglican Use Masses.


      1. "As well as" is the key point at issue, I think.

        The principal mission of the Ordinariates as I see it is to: (a) sift the Anglican patrimony, both pre- and post-Henry VIII, for the aspects consonant with Catholic doctrine; (b) 'chrismate' the good aspects with particular attention to Anglican distinctives (i.e., those which are not merely common to the whole Latin Rite); and (c) emphasize that patrimony in order to draw non-Catholic Christians toward the Church.

        The problem with the EF in the Ordinariates is that while the EF broadly fulfills (a) by virtue of similarities between the Tridentine and the Sarum traditions, it does nothing whatsoever toward fulfilling (b) and (c). The Ordinariates are young and fragile, and must choose carefully where to apply limited resources. The danger is not that someone will want to say the EF privately or for special occasions; it is that time spent building a home for the EF in the Ordinariates is time not spent building the Ordinariates' own raison d'etre.

        There is also a real danger of intra-Ordinariate squabbles, if EF groups emerging within the Ordinariate begin attracting a certain sort of partisans who (as we have seen in comments on this blog and elsewhere) attack the Catholicity of the Anglican Use and their fellow Ordinariate members. Such an internal debate would deal a death blow to goals (b) and (c), and would neuter Ordinariate evangelism.

        My best charitable reading of Msgr. Steenson's statements is that he thinks similarly. I don't know him at all, so that's pure speculation on my part. I certainly hope he does not hold antipathy toward the EF. But charity is certainly called for here, on all sides.

  16. There are quite a number of Catholic books still existent that break down the Tridentine Mass by word and physical action of the priest. Priests in the Antiochian Orthodox Western Rite Vicariate who wish to offer the pre-55 Tridentine Mass use them regularly. Perhaps a diocesan testing program would speed up the process in diocese dragging their feet on allowing the 62 Tridentine.

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