Showing posts with label FSSP. Show all posts
Showing posts with label FSSP. Show all posts
Friday, April 17, 2020
Pre-1955 Holy Week with the Benedictines of Mary Queen of Apostles

As part of the widespread closure of churches due to COVID-19, I like many others had to watch livestream Masses rather than attend them for the Triduum. I chose to watch the pre-1955 Holy Week Liturgies through the Benedictines of Mary Queen of Apostles. Their website is worth visiting, as they keep many praiseworthy monastic practices.

Their community is based in Gower, Missouri and are affiliated with the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. Here are some of the screenshots of the Sacred Triduum Liturgies.

Holy Thursday

Good Friday

Holy Saturday

Saturday, February 1, 2020
Free Email Subscription to Dom Gueranger's Liturgical Year

Sign up to receive a daily reading from the monumental "Liturgical Year" work of Dom Gueranger. Definitely worth a daily read. I've subscribed now for several weeks and find the meditations a wonderful addition to my morning after Matins and Lauds.

I first learned about this initiative through the FSSP's online article that was shared on social media which states in part:
“The prayer of the Church is, therefore, the most pleasing to the ear and heart of God, and therefore the most efficacious of all prayers.” So states the Benedictine abbot Dom Prosper Guéranger in the preface to his monumental work The Liturgical Year, a fifteen volume series that guides the reader through every day of the Church’s calendar by means of readings, meditations, prayers and commentary. Dom Guéranger, originally a diocesan priest, became instrumental in restoring monastic life in France after the French Revolution through his revitalization of the abandoned Solesmes Abbey and founding of the French Benedictine Congregation in the 1830s. His Liturgical Year is a goldmine of insights that assist the faithful soul in better praying and understanding the Mass, and St. Francis de Sales Parish, our apostolate in Atlanta, Georgia, has begun a digital delivery service that brings Dom Guéranger’s readings right to your inbox. We recently talked to Fr. James Smith, FSSP, assistant pastor at St. Francis, to learn more.
To sign up, simply visit the FSSP Atlanta Website, enter your email address, and choose the liturgical year option. The meditations follow the pre-1955 Office so you'll receive great meditations for commemorations and feastdays even neglected by the 1962 Missal.
Friday, January 4, 2019
Christmas at St. Joseph's FSSP Church in Rockdale

I stopped in St. Joseph's Church for the Feast of St. John the Evangelist and was delighted to see what has become of it since the FSSP has taken over.  After several years and a new pastor, the transformation is extreme from the previous barren days. 

New Church at end of 2018:

Image Sources: A Catholic Life Blog

Church when the FSSP came in 2013:

Church back in 1915 after its consecration:

Sunday, March 18, 2018
A Tour of Catholicism in the Netherlands and Belgium

Over the past few years I have been privileged to travel to several great Catholic nations and cities.  The Vatican, Rome, Florence, Munich, Madrid, and Vienna are just a few of the European cities I’ve explored in the past two years.  My travels have taken me to forgotten shrines, mountain monasteries, precious relics of incorruptible saints, and some of the most sacred places on earth.

This year I wanted to take a different route. I wanted to travel to those formerly Catholic cities in the Netherlands and Belgium – cities where the Faith was attacked by the Protestants and where the Church’s martyrs grew in vast numbers.  These cities have as of late largely been attacked with the assault of liberalism, modernism, and secularism.  Nowadays, few souls remain attached to any religion and in the Netherlands over half of the population is irreligious.  Catholics make up the next largest share but the total number of citizens who belong to any religion is shocking low at 32%.  Belgium – while on paper seems much larger in number of Catholics – has been infected with liberalism since their constitution in 1831.  The nation is a proponent of euthanasia, abortion, and same-sex “marriage.”  Alas, these two nations have fallen far from their more glorious and faithful past.

So this March I endeavored to travel to these nations and pray for the souls there.  I wanted to see the relics that remained, venerate the Catholic shrines there, and pray along the way for the souls who need prayers.


My journey started on March 3, 2018, as I arrived in Amsterdam.  The city is home to a few Catholic destinations – the main one being St. Nicholas Basilica which is located just a few minutes’ walk from the Amsterdam Central Train station.  The Basilica has a collection of religious murals and above the high altar is the crown of Maximilian I, the Holy Roman Emperor from 1486 - 1519. In a country of few Catholic places of worship compared with Protestant ones, the Basilica of St. Nicholas is actually the city’s main Catholic Church.  Built in 1887, it was only declared a Minor Basilica recently on its 125th anniversary.

The Basilica is beautiful and well worth a visit. They even offer Latin Vespers each Sunday at 17:00, and while there I had the chance to sit and pray along as they chanted Traditional Gregorian Vespers – a true rarity to find!

The next day in Amsterdam started with a morning Mass at St. Agnes Church, which is run by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter.  Located just 20 or so minutes via tram from St. Nicholas, the church is staffed by several priests and Confessions can be heard in either Dutch or English, since English is known and spoken by virtually all of Amsterdam’s residents.  The FSSP parish is a true gem of Faith in a country that needs our prayers.


After a few days in Amsterdam, I ventured down to the true religious heart of the Netherlands in the city of Utrecht.  There I visited the beautiful Church of St. Willibrord which offers the Traditional Latin Mass and also paid a visit to the city’s Cathedral, which was taken over by the Protestants after the Protestant Reformation.

The highlight of Utrecht is the city’s towering Dom Tower, a true testimony of the great dedication of the past people for Utrecht and the Kingdom of the Netherlands for the Faith.  The Gothic style Tower is the largest church tower in all of the Netherlands at 112.5 meters high. Join me in praying for the conversion of these people through the intercession of The Martyrs of Gorkum, St. Willibrord, St. Oda, St. Bernold, and the other saints of the Netherlands.


After spending a few days in the Netherlands, I took a train from Amsterdam to Antwerp, Belgium, a city on the border of Belgium and the Netherlands.  And this part of the journey did not disappoint.

I arrived in Antwerp’s central train station and it is one of the most unique central stations of Europe, as it is adorned with over twenty different kinds of stone and features soaring, arched windows.  The station allows in a significant amount of sunlight, which is a welcome sight in a country that has a disproportionate amount of rainfall.

My primary destination in Antwerp was the Cathedral of Our Lady, built in 1521.  The belfry of the cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage site and the place contained more triptychs than I have ever seen combined – several famous paintings by Rubens including his legendary works: Elevation of the Cross and his Descent from the Cross are there in triptychs.  I was delighted to also see his impressive painting of the Lord’s Resurrection here in a small side chapel as well.  While most of the Cathedrals I have visited in Europe are free to enter, this one charged a nominal admission fee but it was well worth the price.

The Cathedral itself is a metaphor of the eventual return of the Faith to this part of the world.  Back in 1794, the French revolutionaries - the same ones who murdered nuns and destroyed cathedrals, plundered Our Lady's Cathedral in Antwerp and left it in serious damage.  In fact, the French government sought to completely demolish the building in 1798 but the Cathedral persisted.  At last, in 1816, many priceless works of art were finally restored from Paris as the French liberal government disbanded and the Bourbon Kings were restored to the Throne of France.  During this time, the three Rubens masterpieces were returned and restored to their rightful place in the Cathedral.

The Cathedral itself has undergone significant renovations and completed a major renovation back in 1993. The Cathedral cannot be overemphasized.  No visit to Northern Europe would be complete with this awe-inspiring and art-rich destination.  In fact, of all the museums and Cathedrals I have visited, only the Louve, religious art museum in Florence and the Vatican Museum had, in my opinion, a more impressive art collection.

Antwerp is a fascinating town and well worth a shortstop.  After roughly 4 hours in the city, I headed back to the central station and passed through Ghent before arriving in my next Belgian stop: Bruges.


Hidden in this small, medieval town which features cobblestone streets and the sense of stepping back in time is the wonderful Basilica of the Holy Blood.   The Basilica was built in the 12th century to house a precious relic of the Holy Blood.  The relic is a cloth with the blood of Jesus Christ, housed in a vial, brought to the city by Thierry of Alsace after the 12th century Second Crusade. The cloth itself was collected by St. Joseph of Arimathea himself.

The Basilica features both an upper and a lower chapel.  My visit was only of the upper chapel which feature a Gothic style interior and murals on the wall depicting Thierry of Alsace bringing the relic of the Holy Blood back from the Holy Land.  In 1310, Pope Clement V issued a papal bull granting an indulgence to pilgrims who visited the chapel to venerate the relic.

The relic itself is kept behind a silver tabernacle on a side altar.  What an awe-inspiring moment to pray before a relic of the Blood of Jesus Christ!  Yet, how many of us fail to recall that we truly consume (not just venerate but even truly consume) His Precious Blood – the same Blood! – in Holy Communion.

Also in Bruges is St. Salvator's Cathedral.  Though it has been under major construction in recent years, it is also worth a stop as it is on the way between the basilica and the main train station.  Inside – like the other churches on my pilgrimage – were several beautiful paintings.

After a few hours exploring the city, I ventured via train from Bruges’ central train station on to Brussels, the capital of the European Union and of Belgium.


My first stop after leaving the station and arriving in the heart of Brussels near their famous central square – which is considered by some as the top square in the world in terms of beauty – is the Church of St. Nicholas.

Inside this quaint church rests the holy relics of 19 Martyrs of Gorcum.  These martyrs were killed by a Protestant gang on September 7, 1572.  Among their number are 10 Franciscans, 2 Norbertines, 1 Dominican, 1 Augustinian, 4 members of the clergy, and 1 layman.  Truly they represent the Universal Church.

Previously in the 18th century across the street from the Church of St. Nicholas was a Franciscan convent that has since been destroyed.  The relics of the Gorcum martyrs were carried from that convent to the Church of St. Nicholas and kept in a gilded, copper shrine created by Franz-Xaver Hellner.  The shrine is a true work of art and a beautiful expression of Faith.

The shrine rests on four lions.  On the front panel is Fr. Francois van Rooy, one of the martyrs.  On the opposite panel is the Virgin Mary with St. Boniface and the Franciscans van Outers.  Along the sides are the 9 martyrs in robes.  And on the roof are six scenes which illustrate scenes from their life including their imprisonment and martyrdom, carrying them by boat towards Brielle, the last questioning of Guillaume de la Marck, their hanging, the carrying of their relics to Brussels, and their canonization.

Also in Brussels is the Cathedral of St. Michael.  Built in a similar but more modest style to Notre Dame in Paris, the Cathedral is home to some beautiful art.  Inside is a truly unique Baroque pulpit by Hendrick Frans Verbruggen and a large organ which contains 4300 pipes, 63 stops, four manuals and one pedal. Spend some time there praying for the people of Belgium to return in greater fervor to the Catholic Faith.

And finally, worth mentioning is that Brussels too is home to the Traditional Mass of All Time.  While I visited only for one day during the week and did not have the opportunity to attend one of the Tridentine Masses in the city, they do exist in several locations.


Most Catholics do not think of the Netherlands and Belgium as immediate travel destinations. Home to many protestant and irreligious ideas, the Faith has been under assault for years in these countries.  But as my travels illustrated, the Faith lives on.  Inside the cities in Belgium and the Netherlands are testaments of a Catholic past and a promise of a future which we can help attain through our work of catechesis and prayer.  Join me in praying a Pater and an Ave for the souls in these nations.  Lord have mercy!

I also spent the next 5 days in Paris and I will share in a separate article the highlights of that adventure.  Also, photos will be posted on my Instagram channel as well.

Note, all images are copyrighted by me and all rights are reserved.
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Praying for Vocations Is NOT Optional

The Lord Jesus commands that we foster vocations, "Ask the master of the harvest to send out labourers for his harvest" (Mt 9:38).  Praying for priestly vocations is not optional.  This might be a revelation for many a good Catholic.  Praying for priestly vocations is not a matter of spiritual taste or preference.  Rather, praying for priestly vocations manifests our shared responsibility in obtaining from God the many "other Christs" - the priests needed chiefly for offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and for reconciling penitents, but also for evangelizing, for instructing converts, and for performing the countless works of education, culture, and charity granted by God to the world through His holy priesthood.

Source: FSSP's April 2017 Newsletter
Monday, June 3, 2013
Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter Ordains 5 Men

On Saturday, June 1, 2013, five deacons of the Fraternity of St. Peter were raised to the Sacred Priesthood of Christ by His Excellency, Bishop James D. Conley, at the Cathedral of the Risen Christ in Lincoln, Nebraska.

The newly ordained priests of the Fraternity are:

Father Michael Passo
Father Joseph DeGuzman
Father Anthony Uy
Father Kevin Young
Father Charles Vreeland

Deacon Massimo Botta, native of Rome, will be Ordained on Saturday, June 22, 2013, in the Fraternity parish in Rome, Santa Trinita dei Pelligrini. Please keep him in your prayers.

Image Source: FSSP
Sunday, May 12, 2013
FSSP in Joliet, IL Announces Change in Mass Locations

As announced this morning to the members of the Joliet Latin Mass Community:

Effective August 5th, 2013, Bishop Conlon has appointed Fr Joseph R Valentine FSSP as Administrator of St Joseph Parish in Rockdale. This move will provide a much more stable "home" for the Traditional Latin Mass in the Joliet Diocese and, with God's help, allow us to solidify what we have accomplished and move forward in ways that were not possible before. We are grateful to Bishop Conlon for this opportunity, and to the faithful of St Joseph's for allowing us to become a part of their community; May it be a fruitful relationship for all! St Joseph, pray for us!

What this will mean:
  • We will have a Sunday morning Mass time for the Latin Mass in the Joliet area. 
  • We will have daily Latin Masses at St Joseph's (the daily Masses at Ss Peter & Paul, Naperville will be discontinued, at least for the time being). 
  • The 5:30 PM Sunday Mass at Ss Peter & Paul will continue as before. 
  • The Noon Sunday Mass at St Bernard's will be discontinued. 
  • The neighboring parishes will provide priests to celebrate an English Novus Ordo Mass on Saturday Evening for the parishioners who desire it. 
Source: Press Release from the Joliet Latin Mass Community
Thursday, June 28, 2012
Fr. John Berg on Ss Peter and Paul and the Fraternity's Coat of Arms

Today is the Vigil of Ss Peter and Paul.  Here is a recent Letter from the Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter, Fr. John Berg, on the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul.  It is worth reading on this day:

This month of June closes with the great feast of Saints Peter and Paul on the 29th. Those who have visited Rome know firsthand the importance to the Eternal City of these two great martyrs. Because the rite we celebrate is truly Roman, this feast has also always held a particular pride of place in the liturgical calendar.

It is, of course, also the principle feast of our Fraternity of St. Peter, and we have considered ourselves fortunate to have such a great intercessor and example in the Prince of the Apostles. The choice of taking on the title of St. Peter for our institute was really a rather audacious one. Just as no Pope has dared to take the name Peter II for two millennia, so too, no institute or religious order has taken the title of the one chosen to be the first Vicar of Christ. But given the circumstances of our inception, our founders were encouraged to choose as our patron the one upon whom Christ chose to build His Church.

Continue reading...
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Solemn High Traditional Latin Mass at the Blessed Sacrament Cathedral (May 5, 2012)

Solemn High Traditional Latin Mass and Crowning of Our Lady at the Blessed Sacrament Cathedral last May 5, 2012, after the conclusion of the Annual May Procession. Mass was sung by the choir and choristers of St. Stephen the First Martyr Parish of Sacramento, California, USA. Father McNeely, FSSP, celebrant, is the pastoral administrator of St. Stephen the First Martyr in Sacramento.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Should Traditional Catholics Attend the Novus Ordo?

In recent news, Catholics may have seen that the Institute of Christ the King encourages concelebration in the Novus Ordo with bishops (source).  In Msgr. Rifan's scandalous defense of concelebration, he says, "I do not see why we should, if it were asked of us, reject this sign (concelebrating- sign of communion with the bishop)" (note: this is an English translation of the Spanish text)

This is just one example to show you that the Institute and by far the vast majority of other non-SSPX orders are attached to the Tridentine Mass for a feeling of nostalgia or "preference." This is not what makes someone a Traditional Catholic.

A traditional Catholic knows that a Catholic can not attend a Novus Ordo, or go to a Novus Ordo ordained priest, or support religious liberty, ecumenism, or collegiality. Why is this?  Because in so doing, they are denying the Traditional dogmas and authority of the Universal Church on ecumenism, religious liberty, and even on the propitiatory nature of the Sacrifice of the Mass.  In the Novus Ordo, unlike the traditional Roman Rite (and other Traditional Rites), the word propitiatory does not appear in the beginning of the Novus Ordo Roman Missal's doctrinal exposition.

The very nature of the Novus Ordo Sacraments, while not necessarily invalid (but questionable in many instances), bear in them the theology of the New Rite and the Post Vatican II Church.  To frequent these Sacraments is to mix the good, true, and beautiful with that which is present in the New Sacraments: novelty.  By receiving the Novus Ordo Sacraments, you profess your Communion in and with the beliefs of the Novus Ordo Church, even those beliefs that are flawed.

His Grace Bishop Williamson comments in his "Eleison Comments" #241 in February 2012 the following:
For instance a Protestant may believe in God, he may even believe in the divinity of the man Jesus of Nazareth, but if he does not believe in the Real Presence of God, body, blood, soul and divinity, beneath the appearances of bread and wine after their consecration at Mass, then he has a profoundly different and deficient concept of the love of Jesus Christ and of the God in whom he believes. Can one then say that the true Protestant and the true Catholic believe in the same God ? Vatican II says one can, and on the basis of supposedly more or less shared beliefs between Catholics and all non-Catholics, it builds its ecumenism. On the contrary Dr Schüler illustrates by a series of comparisons that what may look like the same belief, when it forms part of two different creeds, is not really the same at all. Here is one illustration: oxygen molecules mixed with nitrogen are the selfsame molecules as when compounded with hydrogen, but they are as different in the two cases as the air we breathe (O + 4N) from the water we drink (H20)!
Even a number of priests offering the Traditional Sacraments (e.g. the FSSP) were ordained in the Novus Ordo ordination rite.  And many priests (non SSPX that is) that happen to have received traditional ordinations, received them from bishops who were themselves ordained to the episcopacy in the Novus Ordo.

Oil and water do not mix just as theological novelties and the unerring, immutable, eternal Truths of the Catholic Faith.

Just to summarize, this particular issue is one of great complexity and no one post can do justice to the situation to explain it fully in terms of its philosophical, theological, and societal implications.  I merely wish to raise the question that very few Traditionalist raise, namely, whether or not Traditional Catholics should (or can) attend the Novus Ordo.

The following segment of What We Have Lost...And the Road to Restoration helps to give a concise overview of the depths of the problem.

I would invite all of you to also read Why You Should Not Attend the Novus Ordo. This particular document helps go in more detail with the problems inherent in the Novus Ordo.  An additional resource is the Society's page: Is the New Mass Legit? As said by His Excellency Marcel Lefebvre, "The Novus Ordo Missae, even when said with piety and respect for the liturgical rules, is impregnated with the spirit of bears within it a poison harmful to the Faith"
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Tridentine Solemn High Nuptial Mass

While I have posted photos in the past of a Tridentine Nuptial Mass and shared a post on Choosing Music for a Tridentine Nuptial Mass, I wish to share this video of a beautiful Solemn High Mass said in the Traditional Form of the Roman Rite.  Very beautiful indeed.

This Solemn High Nuptial Mass was celebrated on January 9, 2010. The celebrant, Fr. Brendan Kelly, was assisted by the pastor of North American Martyrs Catholic Church, Fr. Gerard Saguto, FSSP, and Fr. Gregory Pendergraft, FSSP. Br. Corwin Low, O.P. sat in choir. The organist was Dr. Tom Joyce.

You can watch the entire playlist by clicking here
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Traditional Latin Mass in Minooka, Illinois at Poor Clares Convent

As I have posted in the past of a Traditional Mass at the Poor Clares Convent in Minooka, IL, I recently sent a message to the Mother Superior to inquiry if these Masses were still being regularly offered.  I was pleased to see that not only is the Traditional Mass offered there once a month but also that a Divine Liturgy is also said there.
Dear Matthew 
Yes there is a Latin Mass on the third Saturday of each month that is open to the public. Also a Divine Liturgy on the second Saturday usually, but I an not sure of this month as Father Ron Hilt is going to Fatima. He did hope to find another priest for us.

In Jesus and Mary, 
The Poor Clares
Saturday, January 8, 2011
FSSP Church consecration in Phoenix!

You can find the prayers and rubrics for the Consecration of a Church according to the 1962 Roman Rite on my post dedicated to The Ceremonies of the Consecration of a Church in the Traditional Manner (1962): Part I.

Also visit my post on the Consecration of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter's Seminary Chapel in the Traditional Rite.
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Bishop James Conley to offer High Mass on Solemnity of Immaculate Conception

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Bishop James Conley, Auxiliary Bishop of Denver, will be the Celebrant for an evening High Mass at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel (5612 S. Hickory St., Littleton, CO 80120) on Wednesday December 8th, 6 pm.  This is an FSSP parish. The feast of the Immaculate Conception is the Patronal feast of the United States of America and the Archdiocese of Denver. Please remember this feast is a holy day of obligation. Other Mass times are scheduled: 7 am, 8:30 am. and 6 pm.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Rev. John Berg celebrates Mass at Church of St. William of York

The Very Rev John Berg, Superior General of the Fraternity of St Peter, was in Reading today to celebrate Mass at the church of St William of York, and bless the house occupied by the two Fraternity priests based there. This has recently been given canonical status as a FSSP residence by the local ordinary, Bishop Crispian Hollis of Portsmouth.

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Images are from the Flickr Photostream of Joseph Shaw.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
October 2, 2010, Mass of Reparation in Illinois

Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Consecration of the Seminary Chapel of Ss. Peter and Paul

In the past I wrote an article outlining the rubrics for the Consecration of a Church as well as for the Consecration of a Paten and a Chalice.

I wish to make available to my readers the following series of videos. These videos include commentary throughout by EWTN reporters allowing you to observe and better understand the ceremonies surrounding the Consecration of a Church. The following series of videos depict the Consecration of the Seminary Chapel of Ss. Peter and Paul in the Traditional Rite.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010
FSSP Consecrates New Chapel of Sts. Peter and Paul at FSSP Seminary in Denton

On 3rd March 2010, the new church of Sts. Peter and Paul was consecrated at the FSSP seminary of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Denton Nebraska. Below are some photos of the consecration. Please click on them for larger images.

Update: View the videos here!


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