Laudetur Iesus Christus! I have two updates that I wanted to share:
- Liturgy & Fraternity (Date Change): The Liturgy & Fraternity group will not be meeting this week, as this week is an Ember Weekwhich is supposed to be penitential … so instead we will shift the meeting to the following Wednesday, May 25th after the Wednesday night Latin Mass at St. Ann (we meet up around 7pm). All men are welcome. There is a small pub about a half mile away called Sir Edmond Halley’s [4151 Park Road, Charlotte NC 28209]. The pub also has a good food menu for those who want to order food. Look forward to seeing you there!
- Latin Mass Attendance Commitment: Firstly, we have had a great amount of supportive responses to this request which is a great blessing. In addition, I had a couple good questions from people, asking why attendance at the Latin Mass mattered any differently than at the Novus Ordo. I thought it would be helpful to explain this in some more detail.
The current juridical formula governing the Extraordinary Form Mass, what some refer to as the Traditional Latin Mass, was instituted into Church Law in 2007 by the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum. Unlike the Ordinary Form Mass, the Extraordinary Form obtains its particular rights through a request of the lay faithful and by their sustained attendance. Of course a bishop or pastor could institute it on his own initiative, but in the case of the Latin Mass at St. Ann in Charlotte, it was instituted in response to a request of the faithful. Church Law (Sum. Pont. Art. 5. § 1) refers to a coetus fidelium, which is Latin for a stable group of faithful, as being necessary to support such requests. Church Law does not define any attendance number, which leaves it rather subjective. A number that is sufficient for a current pastor or bishop, could be insufficient for the next. One thing is certain, however, more is always better.
To restate our history, on August 15, 2011, the Feast of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the anniversary of the founding of St. Ann Catholic Church, a stable group of faithful joined together to make a request for the Latin Mass. This request was ultimately granted on February 10, 2013 — one day prior to the announcement of the abdication of Pope Benedict XVI. We are so blessed to have a pastor and bishop who are so supportive of our spiritual needs.
When I equate attendance to the Latin Mass at St. Ann as a matter of “justice”, it is in the classical use of the term, which is more a matter of equity as opposed to one of judgement. For example, if Mass attendance at St. Ann were to fall below a number that our pastor or bishop felt was too low, than either of them would have greater discretion to discontinue this Mass. This is only reasonable. If that were to occur, I am sure that many of the 1,400 people who are on this CLMC email list but who are not regularly attending the Latin Mass might feel some disappointment. They might have wanted to have known ahead of time how important the attendance numbers were in this case.
I know that many people struggle with real difficulties with attending an afternoon Mass at this time slot and/or location. There are some who live rather far away; or who may not have reliable transportation; or have a health concern. For some, it might be imprudent to attend every week, but it might be reasonable to attend occasionally. I gave the once per month figure as a example, but the right frequency for each family might be more or less — or it may not be practical to attend at all. As in all things, let prudence be your guide.
For those who can not join us in person, in your charity, please include us in your prayer intentions!
Feast of Corpus Christi May 26th: This magnificent feast will occur on Thursday May 26th and Fr. Reid is graciously offering a 7pm Mass that evening.
40 Hours of Adoration: Immediately after Corpus Christi Mass on the 26th will begin 40 Hours of Eucharistic Adoration. The sign up sheets are in the narthex and Father encourages all to sign up for a 30 minute slot.