Thursday, August 30, 2007

Canon Law and Parents Rights

Given the amount of confusion, be it intentional or unintentional, regarding the education of children in the Faith, I decided it would be prudent to post the exact text of the Canon Laws as well as excerpts from Familiaris Consortio and Gaudium et Spes for parents to reference. It is indeed a sad situation that there are individuals who would attempt to usurp the rights of parents to educate their children in the Faith. It is far sadder that these individuals would use the Holy Sacraments as leverage, threatening to deny young innocent Catholics of the Eucharist based soley on the families rejection of an institutionalized program in favor of embracing the solemn duty within the home. In this blog I will address the many ways in which institutionalized education structures - better characterized by Fr. Hardon as "substitute educations," harm the souls of young children and threaten to do further damage to the Domestic Church.


Can. 773 It is pastors of souls especially who have the serious duty of attending to the catechesis of the christian people, so that, through doctrinal formation and the experience of the christian life, the living faith of the people may be manifest and active.

Can. 774 ß1 The care for catechesis, under the direction of lawful ecclesiastical authority, extends to all members of the Church, to each according to his or her role.

ß2 Before all others, parents are bound to form their children, by word and example, in faith and in christian living. The same obligation binds godparents and those who take the place of parents.

Can. 775 ß1 While observing provisions made by the Apostolic See it is the responsibility of diocesan Bishops to issue norms concerning catechetical matters; to ensure that appropriate means of catechesis are available, even by preparing a catechism, if this seems opportune; to foster and to coordinate catechetical initiatives.

ß2 If it is thought to be useful, the Episcopal Conference may, with the prior approval of the Apostolic See, publish catechisms for its territory.

ß3 The Episcopal Conference may establish a catechetical office, whose principal purpose is to assist individual dioceses in catechetical matters.

Can. 776 By virtue of his office, the parish priest is bound to ensure the catechetical formation of adults, young people and children. To this end, he is to avail himself of the help of clerics attached to the parish, as well as of members of institutes of consecrated life and of societies of apostolic life, being mindful of the character of each institute; and the assistance of lay members of Christ's faithful, especially catechists. All of these, unless they are lawfully impeded, are not to refuse to give their labours willingly. The parish priest is also to promote and to foster the role of parents in the family catechesis mentioned in can. 774, ß2.

Can. 777 In a special way, the parish priest is to ensure, in accordance with the norms laid down by the diocesan Bishop, that:

1ƒ an adequate catechesis is given for the celebration of the sacraments;
2ƒ children are properly prepared for first confession and first holy communion, and for the sacrament of confirmation, by means of catechetical formation over an appropriate period of time;
3ƒ children, after they have made their first holy communion, are given a richer and deeper catechetical formation;
4ƒ as far as their condition allows, catechetical formation is given to the mentally and physically handicapped;
5ƒ the faith of young people and of adults is strengthened, enlightened and developed by various catechetical methods and initiatives .

Can. 778 Religious Superiors and Superiors of societies of apostolic life are to ensure that catechetical formation is diligently given in their churches and schools, and in other works in any way entrusted to their care.

Can. 779 Catechetical formation is to be given by employing all those aids, educational resources and means of communication which seem the more effective in securing that the faithful, according to their character capability, age and circumstances of life, may be more fully steeped in catholic teaching and prepared to put it into practice.

Can. 780 Local Ordinaries are to ensure that catechists are duly trained to carry out their office properly, namely, that continuing formation is available to them, that they have an appropriate knowledge of the teaching of the Church, and that they learn both the theory and the practice of the principles of pedagogy.

Because they have given life to their children, parents have a most serious obligation and enjoy the right to educate them; therefore Christian parents are especially to care for the Christian education of their children according to the teaching handed on by the Church. Canon 226, para. 2

The right and duty of parents to give education is essential, since it is connected with the transmission of human life; it is original and primary with regard to the educational role of others, on account of the uniqueness of the loving relationship between parents and children; and it is irreplaceable and inalienable, and therefore incapable of being entirely delegated to others or usurped by others.Familiaris Consortio, Part III, chap. 36

Christian spouses have a special sacrament by which they are fortified and receive a kind of consecration in the duties and dignity of their state…Graced with the dignity and office of fatherhood and motherhood, parents will energetically acquit themselves of a duty which devolves primarily on them, namely education. Vatican II, Gaudiem et Spes Chap. 1.48

The pastor is obliged to see to it that the word of God in its entirety is announced to those living in the parish…he is to see to it that the lay Christian faithful are instructed in the truths of the faith, especially through the [Sunday] homily… and through the catechetical formation. Canon 528, para. 1

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Altoona-Johnstown reaction to the Latin Mass

For the celebration of Mass in the Extraordinary Form
Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown

The Holy Spirit has prompted our Holy Father to address the matter of the Tridentine Mass. With his issuance of a Motu Proprio, taking effect on the 14th of September, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI has allowed priests of the Roman Catholic Church to celebrate Mass according to the 1962 Missal, without any further permission but under certain conditions. Since it is important to read the document carefully, I wish to issue the following guidelines for our Diocesan Church. This I do for the sake of liturgical unity and integrity, in accord with the Holy Father’s admonition to us bishops. In his letter accompanying the Motu Proprio, he wrote the following: “... I very much wish to stress that these new norms do not in any way lessen your own authority and responsibility, either for the liturgy or for the pastoral care of your faithful. Each Bishop, in fact, is the moderator of the liturgy in his own Diocese.”

The Holy Father acknowledges the fact that many priests may not demonstrate a rubrical or linguistic ability to celebrate the extraordinary form of the Eucharistic Liturgy. In that case, a priest may not celebrate that particular form of Mass nor is he obligated to learn to do so. Provided that a priest possesses the required rubrical and linguistic ability to celebrate the extraordinary form of Mass, the following come into play.

1. The Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI is to be regarded as the ordinary expression of the law of prayer of the Catholic Church of the Latin Rite. A priest celebrating Mass according to the extraordinary form may not do so exclusively; but, needs to celebrate also the Mass in the ordinary form as an xpression of his not denying the validity of the Mass commonly used today.

Response: While this logic is valid it is not carried out to its appropriate conclusion. If a priest who is inclined to say the Extraordinary Mass must demonstrate an affirmation of validity of the Novus Ordo by continuing to say the Novus Ordo, shouldn’t those who choose to say the Novus Ordo be likewise obligated to demonstrate acceptance of the Latin Mass by their learning how to say the Latin Mass (Extraordinary form) and at least occasionally celebrating it?

2. Any priest of the Latin Rite that has the rubrical and linguistic ability may celebrate Mass in the extraordinary form without the Faithful (privately) at any time except during the Sacred Triduum. Christ’s Faithful who spontaneously request it, may join the priest. No permission is required.

Response: Spontaneous attendance at the private Mass was not a stipulation of the Motu Proprio. It is not sinful for the Faithful to desire to attend and make proper arrangements to attend a private saying of the Latin Mass in advance. The word spontaneous is being utilized as a gross mistranslation of what the Pope in fact wrote which was: Art. 4. Celebrations of Mass as mentioned above in art. 2 may -- observing all the norms of law -- also be attended by faithful who, of their own free will, ask to be admitted.

3. Communities or Institutes of Consecrated Life or Societies of Apostolic Life of either pontifical or diocesan rite may use the extraordinary form of the Mass for their community celebrations in their own oratories by permission of their own major superior.

4. Should a pastor decide to celebrate or allow the celebration of one of the regularly scheduled Masses in a parish in accord with the extraordinary form (Missal of Blessed John X)(ffl), it must be in response to a request from a group (coetus/association) within his particular parish (member parishioners) that has existed and has been attached to the previous liturgical tradition steadfastly (that is: for some time; stabiliter existit). He may not do so as a result of his own personal preference. I ask that requests be presented to the pastor in writing, including names and addresses. These should be kept on file at the parish. In order to preserve unity within a parish, the Parish Pastoral Council is to be consulted in regard to any change. Groups composed of individuals belonging to various parishes are to approach the Diocesan Bishop.
Response: The Latin words Stabiliter Existit were not used in the Motu Proprio. The use of those words significantly changes the meaning of this paragraph. Per this Bishop’s conditions – what exactly constitutes a group, numerically speaking? How many fulfills the definition of group? More importantly, how could a group that is attached to the Latin Mass have existed for “some time” when it was not clear to anyone that this Motu Proprio was inevitable? What about the millions of Catholics who are under the age of 50 who have not had cognizant exposure to the Latin Mass? Recent popular reports suggest that the greatest interest in the Latin Mass is from the younger members of the Faith who have not had free access to it in their lifetime. Why would we deprive these individuals of this treasure?

At the very least, anecdotal evidence supports the thesis that those who attend the Latin Mass have a greater devotion to the Faith. Perhaps allowing an open borders approach could result in a significant flocking to the more traditional values of the Faith such as: God centered worship, Hierarchal authority structure, disciplined life-styles, unambiguous and uncompromising doctrinal purity, and objective moral integrity. An increase in devotion would surely foster a greater demand for orthodoxy within the diocese.

5. The entire schedule of Masses in a parish may not be in accord with the extraordinary form, as this would make it a “personal parish” for which the diocesan bishop’s permission is required.

6. Whenever Mass is celebrated according to the extraordinary form, all rubrics for that form of Mass must be observed; including prayers, language, vestments, Holy Communion under one form on the tongue, only boy altar servers, and postures (both of the celebrant and the faithful if present). The Roman Canon is always used.
Response: It is refreshing to see that we are going to fully embrace the rubrics for the Latin Mass in this diocese, as clearly anyone with a devotion to this liturgy would expect, demand, and deserve. While edified that we are going to make a real effort to not hybridize or bastardize the Latin Mass, I remain concerned about the questionable practices that occur within the Novus Ordo under the guise of “full participation” of the laity. Why is this Latin rubrical standard of purity not applied to the Novus Ordo? Why do we tolerate some parishes using bastardized versions of the Nicene Creed, taking liberties outside of the realm of poetic license or artistic expression in order to fulfill an agenda, i.e. the promotion of women’s ordination, political agendas specifically related to moral issues i.e. abortion, homosexuality, and etc?

7. In order to assure that a priest has the rubrical and linguistic ability to celebrate the extraordinary form of Mass within the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, acknowledgement of such is to be obtained from our Diocesan Office of Liturgy. This is only logical. Many of our priests have never celebrated Mass according to the Missal of Blessed John XXIII. Others, who have, have not done so for some time. Our seminaries assure bishops that those leaving to function as priests have the necessary knowledge and facility to celebrate Mass in the current form. Perhaps, in the future, they will also do the same in regard to the extraordinary form. In the interim, the matter will be handled on a diocesan basis.

Response: Is it equally logical to place the Dumb at the mercy of the Dumber? Is not the priestly portion of the Diocesan Office of Liturgy composed of this group also, “Many of our priests have never celebrated Mass according to the Missal of Blessed John XXIII. Others, who have, have not done so for some time?” Since the Pope has said “the priest has no need for permission from the Apostolic See or from his ordinary,” in exactly what does the bureaucratic, agenda driven, and politically motivated “Liturgy Office ‘acknowledgement’” consist ?

The Holy Father asks for charity and pastoral prudence in any consideration of celebrating the Mass in accord with the extraordinary form (according to the Missal of Blessed John XXIII). That same charity and pastoral prudence need to be exercised within our own Diocesan Church. The guidelines delineated above are intended in such a spirit of charity and prudence.

I take this opportunity to encourage the appropriate reverence and harmony in celebrating the Mass according to either form, ensuring the unity of which it is to be a sign. The Eucharistic Liturgy of the Church is a treasure currently entrusted to us to preserve and pass on to future generations of the Faithful.

(Most Rev.) Joseph V. Adamec
Bishop of Altoona-Johnstown

August 20, 2007
Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania

Response: Even though he has produced the quintessential CYA liberal-church-speak document it should be noted that nowhere in his two page Politically Correct screed against the Latin Mass does this bishop refer to the Bishop of Rome’s present intention for, and future vision of, his having broken the chains on this Catholic Treasure. Benedict uses no PC liberal-speak when he writes in his accompanying letter to the bishops:

It is not appropriate to speak of these two versions of the Roman Missal as if they were 'two rites.' Rather, it is a matter of a twofold use of one and the same rite....

"As for the use of the 1962 Missal as a 'Forma extraordinaria' of the liturgy of the Mass, I would like to draw attention to the fact that this Missal was never juridically abrogated and, consequently, in principle, was always permitted. At the time of the introduction of the new Missal, it did not seem necessary to issue specific norms for the possible use of the earlier Missal. Afterwards, however, it soon became apparent that a good number of people remained strongly attached to this usage of the Roman Rite, which had been familiar to them from childhood....

Immediately after the Second Vatican Council it was presumed that requests for the use of the 1962 Missal would be limited to the older generation which had grown up with it, but in the meantime it has clearly been demonstrated that young persons too have discovered this liturgical form, felt its attraction and found in it a form of encounter with the Mystery of the Most Holy Eucharist, particularly suited to them...

For that matter, the two Forms of the usage of the Roman Rite can be mutually enriching... The celebration of the Mass according to the Missal of Paul VI will be able to demonstrate, more powerfully than has been the case hitherto, the sacrality which attracts many people to the former usage [The Latin Mass]. The surest guarantee that the Missal of Paul VI can unite parish communities and be loved by them consists in its being celebrated with great reverence in harmony with the liturgical directives. This will bring out the spiritual richness and the theological depth of this Missal....

"I now come to the positive reason which motivated my decision to issue this Motu Proprio updating that of 1988. It is a matter of coming to an interior reconciliation in the heart of the Church...

"There is no contradiction between the two editions of the Roman Missal. In the history of the liturgy there is growth and progress, but no rupture. What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church's faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place.

One wonders why, in light of the fullness of what the Pope has written, this bishop has chosen to so narrowly restrict the availability of the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, in stead of, giving them their proper place. Why has he chosen to ridicule his priests and demean their (apparently faulty) educations rather than set up short term workshops to train them in what earlier generations held as sacred [and what] remains sacred and great for us too.

Is this not the same bishop about whom this was posted only a few weeks ago?

Pa. bishop rejects Tridentine MassMatt C. AbbottApril 16, 2007On Saturday, April 14, 2007, St. Clare of Assisi Church in Johnstown, Pa., concluded its Divine Mercy Novena. Preceding the Mass, a dinner and question and answer session with Bishop Joseph Adamec of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown was held.During the 'Town Hall'-style question and answer session, one parishioner asked Adamec about recent articles in the local Catholic newspaper regarding an anticipated papal document, and whether our diocese had plans for making a Tridentine Mass available.Adamec responded, 'No.'He said the Tridentine rite is only a concession to the Lefebvrites, and there is no need for it here because that situation does not exist here. Adamec said a Latin Mass could be made available [referring to the Novus Ordo with some Latin], but if the Tridentine rite is offered, it is a different rite, and you have to go back to the old forms of spirituality that went with it. He also said you have to go back to the old forms of sacraments, fasting and other aspects.He asked why the parishioner was asking.The parishioner said they have attended Tridentine rite Masses in the past, and that parishes offering the Tridentine rite were flourishing, with many young, large families who took documents like Humanae Vitae to heart, to which the bishop made an unintelligible remark that nonetheless seemed derogatory.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Good News for AJ

From the Fatima Mirror:

(1). Father Zatalava discusses with Archbishop Raymond Burke of Saint Louis his intention to spend the following eleven days in training at the Institute of Christ the King for the saying of the Latin Mass, what Pope Benedict calls the Extraordinary Form of the Mass.

(2). Archbishop Burke and Father Zatalava concelebrate the Ordinary Form of the Mass called the Novus Ordo.
(3). Archbishop Burke, Father Thomas J. Euteneuer, President of Human Life International, and Father J.D.Zatalava, Founder and Editor-in-chief of, pray the Morning Office before the Archbishop delivers the Keynote address to the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy in Saint Louis, MO.

The Archbishop has long supported wider use of the Latin Mass in his Archdiocese. He was called to Rome to represent the American Bishops in advising the Holy Father prior to the publication of Summorum Pontificum,the document which gives all priests greater latitude in saying the Latin Mass.
The following resolutions were issued at the conclusion of the four day gathering on July 19th:
  1. We express our deep gratitude and respect for church leaders like Archbishop Raymond Burke of Saint Louis who courageously, consistently and faithfully defend Holy Mother Church and all her official teachings and disciplines. We strongly support his stand on denying Holy Communion to any Catholic candidate or politician whoopenly and notoriously supports abortion and/or euthanasia.\
  2. We embrace the magisterial teaching of the Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) in its recent document on the unicity and necessity of Catholic Church, in which the one, true Church of Jesus Christ, fully subsists.When understood in the full context and accurate context of papal and conciliar decrees ('Dominus Jesus' and'Lumen Gentium'), this doctrine is not a hindrance to ecumenical endeavors nor does it deviate from previous and perennially taught dogmas on the ecclesiological nature of the church.
  3. We thank Pope Benedict XVI for his recent motu proprio 'Summorum Pontificum' and hope it will be fully, freely and universally implemented in every diocese throughout the world. We see the invaluable treasure of preserving the old Latin “Tridentine” Mass, (extraordinary form of the Roman Rite), for the spiritual benefit of all thefaithful who request it. We furthermore affirm the necessity of reverently and properly celebrating the vernacularNovus Ordo Mass of Paul VI, (ordinary form of the same Roman Rite). Our prayer is that this will bring back many ofthe clergy and lay faithful who have gravitated to schismatic groups in reaction to serious abuses committed bysome priests who have irreverently celebrated the new Mass in English since the Vatican II.
  4. We urge the bishops of the English speaking nations to quickly endorse a totally accurate translation of the Roman Missal which would be completely faithful to the typical Latin text. As celebrants of the Holy Mass, we see the necessity of and urgency of restoring sacred language and replacing all pedestrian verbiage in Divine worshipsince the Holy Eucharist is the ‘source and summit of Christian life.’
  5. As we prepare for the 40th anniversary of 'Humanae Vitae' next year, we encourage our brother priestsand deacons to reacquaint themselves with this prophetic papal encyclical of Paul VI and we commend our Americanbishops for the recent USCCB document on Natural Family Planning, 'Married Love and the Gift ofLife' (November, 2006).
  6. We pledge as faithful sons of the Church our continued prayers and complete obedience to the Vicar of Christ, Pope Benedict XVI, and eagerly await his first pastoral visit to the United States.
Learning to Celebrate The Tridentine Mass At Saint Francis de Sales Oratory Saint Louis, MO
During this historical moment, we offer priests the opportunity to be introduced to the Rites of the ClassicalRoman Liturgy individually or in small groups while living with the Institute’s community at one of our Oratories in the United States or at our International Seminary near Florence/Italy. Thus, our fellow clergy is kindly invited to live the daily celebration of the Roman Liturgy in an atmosphere based on the spirit of faithful Romanity cherished since its beginnings by the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest. The demand is growing and we may have to ask for your patience. However, time frames can be adapted to the circumstances of our priestly confreres.

Having been Ordained in 1970 Father Zatalava was neither trained to, nor ever actually celebrated as a priest the Mass of his youth. To ready himself for whatever may develop locally in regard to the public celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass Father attended the first training session offered to an individual priest by the Institute of Christ the King, the Sovereign Priest at their Saint Louis house, Saint Francis de Sales Oratory. The program is run by Abbá Karl Lenherdt. Father Z’s personal instructor was the newly ordained Father William Avis. Father Avis was tasked with introducing Father Zatalava to the Tridentine Mass rubrics and language and setting a course for further self-study. Father Z plans on celebrating his first Mass privately (per the Pope’s permission) when the Motu Proprio takes effect in September. Until then it’s practice, practice, practice.

Barbara Kralis writes on July 30, 2007

The Supreme Vicar of Christ on earth, Pope Benedict XVI, has recently spoken in a most wonderful way for the spiritual benefit of all the universal church, for the living and the dead, and for the memory of the victories of the Saints who have gone before us.

In releasing his Motu proprio, 'Summorum Pontificum,' on July 07, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI gave precise rules for the Catholic clergy and the faithful laity's wider access to the Traditional Latin Mass, without fear of stigma or marginalization.

A great treasure of the Catholic Church, the Traditional Latin Mass draws the faithful out of their ordinary lives into the world of Christ. It promotes through its beautiful liturgy of prayers and postures the ultimate reverence of the faithful imbued with the sacred reality of Christ.

Pope Benedict's Motu proprio allows any duly ordained priest who is to celebrate the Tridentine Mass without permission from his bishop. Codified in the 16th century, the very reverent Traditional Latin Mass has been the Mass of the many Martyrs and Saints before us and delivered to us as a precious heritage.
Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei

This Motu proprio or Apostolic Letter, published originally in Latin, makes it very clear that the Traditional Latin Mass was never abrogated and therefore the faithful may assist at it without any scruple of conscience.

Priests and lay faithful may appeal to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Die in case of litigation or of the non-fulfillment of what is ordered in the Motu proprio. To do so, contact:
Dario Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos,
President of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei' Palazzo della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede Piazza del Sant' Uffizio, 11, 00l93 Rome, Italy, Europe.

"Art. 2. In Masses celebrated without the people, each Catholic priest of
the Latin rite, whether secular or regular, may use the Roman Missal published
by Bl. Pope John XXIII in 1962, or the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI
in 1970, and may do so on any day with the exception of the Easter Triduum. For
such celebrations, with either one Missal or the other, the priest has no need
for permission from the Apostolic See or from his Ordinary.

"Art. 4.
Celebrations of Mass as mentioned above in art. 2 may - observing all the norms
of law - also be attended by faithful who, of their own free will, ask to be