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GAINESVILLE, Virginia (LifeSiteNews) – Parishioners of one of the Diocese of Arlington’s most vibrant Traditional Latin Mass communities looked shell-shocked and ashen, some fighting back tears, during the packed 12:30 Mass on Sunday.
Days before, Bishop Michael Burbidge announced that in just over a month, the Old Rite of the Mass – sometimes called the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, the usus antiquior, the Traditional Latin Mass – will no longer be allowed at Holy Trinity.
Beginning September 8, the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the 21 parishes in the diocese where the Old Mass is currently offered will shrink to just three – with five additional authorized locations, two of which are historic or former church buildings and three of which are schools.
One of those schools is Renaissance Montessori School in Nokesville, which is technically within the parish boundaries of All Saints Catholic Church, but where Holy Trinity parishioners will go.
“The priests here at Holy Trinity love all of you,” pastor Father Thomas Vander Woude announced before the 12:30 Mass started. “Holy Trinity priests are going to take care of you. We’re the ones going over there [to Renaissance Montessori School]. So that’s what’s gonna happen. We’ll work on – as far as times of Masses, we’ll talk with you all … we’ll set it up beautifully.”
The three priests of Holy Trinity will be “taking care of you and all of your spiritual needs,” Vander Woude assured his parishioners, encouraging them to pray the consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary beginning August 3 and ending September 8.
“I am becoming increasingly hopeful that by bearing this trial and cross, God will bring us some wonderful blessings,” Father Richard Carr told the faithful at the beginning of his homily. “Be sure that we will be bearing this cross with you, which lightens and sweetens it for us all.”
Holy Trinity is, like so many other parishes in the Diocese of Arlington, a place where both attendees of the new (Novus Ordo) and old rites of the Mass get along well and are together active in the life of the parish, which boasts a large homeschooling community and is where Bishop Athanasius Schneider offered a Solemn Pontifical Mass in October 2021.
There is a 24-hour Adoration chapel. There are crates in the narthex where parishioners drop off nonperishable food for the needy. There is a plaque inscribed with 1 Corinthians 15:51 (“We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed”) above the diaper changing pad in the women’s restroom, near posters offering help after abortion and miscarriage. The 12:30 Latin Mass is bursting with large, young families who benefit from the church’s two cry rooms.
All are welcome, truly.
The news that the Old Mass will no longer be allowed in the parish church “was really shocking,” Tom Mead told LifeSiteNews after the 12:30 Latin Mass. “We didn’t think it was gonna happen here.”
LifeSite's Rome correspondent, Louis Knuffke, delivers four other LifePetitions to the Vatican:
UPDATE (8/2/22): Cardinal Cupich has regretfully banned the Institute of Christ the King from offering the Traditional Latin Masses or hearing Confessions at their parish in Chicago.
An official sign from the Institute was posted at the Shrine of Christ the King, saying: “As of August 1, the celebration of public Masses is suspended. Confession times are discontinued. The Chapel remains open for prayer.”
Cardinal Cupich has forbidden the Institute of Christ the King to operate in Chicago (see image). This is very sad; Pope B16 said “it behooves ALL of us” to preserve the riches of the ancient Catholic liturgy. pic.twitter.com/rGkVC2XupF— Watershed Staff (@ccwatershed) July 31, 2022
See LifeSiteNews' special report here.
Sources have leaked to LifeSiteNews that Cardinal Cupich seems ready to completely ban a community of Traditional priests from offering the Latin Mass in the Archdiocese of Chicago!
July 31st appears to be the deadline for priests belonging to the Institute of Christ the King to close down all public Latin Masses — which would end their ministry in the Archdiocese of Chicago full stop.
This outrageous persecution against faithful Catholics is an affront to 2,000 years of Tradition and is the rallying cry for today's saints: We need brave and devout Catholics across the world to demand Cardinal Cupich respect the holy priests of the Institute of Christ the King and SAVE the Traditional Latin Mass!
SIGN: CARDINAL CUPICH MUST HEAR THAT CATHOLICS LIKE YOU LOVE AND SUPPORT THE TRADITIONAL LATIN MASS! >>>
The Institute of Christ the King has attracted national attention for its beautiful, reverent, and profound celebration of the TLM — all of which looks set to end in LESS THAN TWO WEEKS!
There are currently 18 ICKSP apostolates dotting more than 10 states in America — serving 400-500 faithful Catholics just in the city of Chicago with 3 Latin Masses every Sunday. With this rumored attack, Cupich — who also serves in high-profile Vatican positions — is sending a sign to all traditionalist priests worldwide.
This robust Catholic community is truly a jewel of Catholic Tradition — making it odd that the ICKSP might be the subject of censorship!
The Church hosts synods on synods on synods and pays millions of dollars to consultants to figure out how to get people interested in going to Mass and the end result is shutting down the Masses people literally beg to attend lol.— Zac Mabry (@ZacMabry) July 15, 2022
As LifeSiteNews continued reporting...
"Cardinal Cupich, a close collaborator of Pope Francis and a promoter of the liberal agenda within the Church, has already issued restrictions regarding the traditional Latin rite within his diocese at the end of last year."
*** Catholics must defend and promote the Traditional Latin Mass before the potential July 31st deadline! ***
It’s important now more than ever to send a message to Cardinal Cupich that the Institute of Christ the King must continue its ministry of offering the TLM without fear of retaliation or hostility.
END OF JULY DEADLINE: SEND A MESSAGE TO CARDINAL CUPICH THAT YOU STAND WITH THE INSTITUTE OF CHRIST THE KING! >>>
The crackdown is expected to take effect at the end of July, when the Institute of Christ the King will be expected to celebrate the Novus Ordo Mass — in opposition to their vocational calling to protect the TLM.
This mandate is by design, but the ICKSP is currently holding strong. Catholics all across the world must tell the faithful priests of the ICKSP that we are praying for them and raising our voices!
RAISE YOUR VOICE: PROTECT THE TRADITIONAL LATIN MASS FROM CENSORSHIP! >>>
Thank you for committing yourself to the frontline fight defending Catholicism from the onslaught of the Cardinal Cupich’s modernist movement. It is moments like these that Catholics from all over the world show their true colors. Stand for TRADITION. Defend the Institute of Christ the King! Send a message to Cardinal Blase Cupich!
DEFEND THE TRADITIONAL LATIN MASS BY SENDING A RESOUNDING MESSAGE NOW! >>>
Return to Tradition also features the LifeSiteNews article mentioned throughout this petition.
Thank you for signing this petition and sending a message to Cardinal Cupich before the end of the month deadline.
“We got to hear from our priests today and I think they’ve got the right attitude,” Mead said. “We’re gonna make the best of a terrible situation and one day, hopefully, we’ll be back in our church where we belong.”
“But,” he continued, “God gave us this cross. He permitted us to have this cross. Who am I to tell God, ‘no, I’m not gonna take this cross?’ We’ll make the best of this situation and we’ll pray and we’ll continue to worship God and have the celebration of the Traditional Mass. We’ll pray for our bishops and support our priests, who are just unbelievable in this diocese – just so many holy men. In God’s time, it’ll be fixed.”
‘More unity with both rites being here in the parish instead of kicking one out’
Parishioner Megan Gray, who is pregnant with her eighth child, told LifeSiteNews she felt “pretty much sadness and disappointment and a little bit of anger, because it just seems like it’s very unnecessary to move us to the gym when there’s no problem.”
“The bishop says it’s for unity, but there’s more unity with both rites being here in the parish instead of kicking one out,” said Gray, who is an alumna of Christendom College.
“This announcement this morning was like a knife going through my heart,” Doug Koupash said. “I [worshipped at] the Latin Mass until I went to college. That’s when the Novus Ordo was in full bloom. And I remember the first time I went to the local church at my university in Iowa and they had the English and the guitars and the banjos … I was absolutely horrified. I was horrified. I left that church and did not go back.”
“So on and off I went to the church. I got married and went back to the Church again. I tried with the Novus Ordo Mass and there was nothing there. After a while, there was nothing in my heart. I couldn’t do it anymore. And I can’t go back to that. So I have some decisions to make.”
“When I was very troubled,” he said, greatly struggling to speak through tears, “I looked at the Eastern Mass, the Eastern Church. And I always thought that if I couldn’t find spirituality here, I would go there. I don’t know. I just don’t know. I’m sorry.”
Holy Trinity is “one of the strongest parishes, I think, in the diocese,” an individual who only gave his first name, Chris, told LifeSiteNews, adding that parishioners eagerly donated to the parish maintenance fund to quickly pay off the church mortgage. “Why not just keep having [the Latin Mass] here, where the church was built for it? Instead, it’s down at [a] Montessori school” where “there’s not even a chapel. It’s a preschool.”
“It seems like it’s a special indignity,” he added. “It’s like moving us to a stall, or a stable.”
Christy Dodge, a mother of five whose sons are altar servers at Holy Trinity, echoed the sadness expressed by other parishioners.
“Part of the attraction of the Mass is the beauty and of course the Mass itself is really beautiful. But the gym is not gonna be very beautiful. And it’s also gonna be really small and have no cry room,” she said. “But of course – I’ve heard that he [Burbidge] asked for more parishes to keep it and he was told not to … I’ve heard he tried and he’s also trying to obey the Pope. So we’re just really praying hard for the Pope to reverse this or for it to be reversed somehow. It’s really difficult for everybody.”
“I believe that the Extraordinary Form is filling,” parishioner Jeremy Kelly, a convert from Protestantism, commented. “We’re getting a lot of people that are coming back to the Traditional Mass because it is our inheritance. And it disappeared for a long time. It’s weird. It’s like, we were given this inheritance that we really didn’t grow up with. And so now we find the beauty and we find the tradition and we come back and we accept that this is the Mass of the saints. And yet, it’s being denied [to us] slowly.”
“It doesn’t make any sense to me that they would put [this Mass] in a school, when it’s already being said here and it’s already filling the seats.”