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Roman Missal Action Sheet

Our Lady, Help of Christians, pray for us! +

With the publication of Summorum Pontificum by the Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI, given of “his own initiative” (i.e., “motu proprio“) 7 July 2007, His Holiness has done far and away more than ‘liberate the Latin Mass’.  He has redefined the sacred Roman liturgy,  rehabilitating celebration of the usus antiquior in all its rites, ceremonies and sacraments — not only the Mass itself — according to the missal of Blessed Pope John XXIII.

Moreover, since acquiescence of the local Ordinary (bishop) is no longer a necessary condition, now any Priest of the Latin church may, of his own election, celebrate the Roman Liturgy in its forma extraordinaria (as it has come recently to be designated).  Likewise, the lay faithful may ask a priest to be permitted, without hindrance, to pray with him at holy Mass or ask a pastor to celebrate the other sacraments in the extraordinary form. (Confer in particular the motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum at articles 1, 2, 4, 5.2 & 5.3, and 9.1.)All that makes application of the motu proprio much simpler and far easier than the days before 07/07/07.

Some Steps in a Plan for Catholics Desiring the Restoration
of the Traditional Roman Liturgy in the extraordinary form,
and/or Seeking the Service of
Traditional Societies/Priests in their Dioceses

The schema below should help in accomplishing the objective:
  I. Pray for the restoration of the traditional Latin/Roman rites.

 Pray both privately and publicly, i.e. with other Catholics in public.  Above all, pray the holy Rosary.

II. Speak to other interested Catholics. Call them on the telephone, meet with them in person, build an e-mail list or use some other form of electronic communication.

 (a) Ask them to join you in prayer, and to call or visit others who wish to pray according to the traditional rites.

 (b) Spread the word that you are searching for a sympathetic Priest to celebrate the sacraments etc. in the forma extraordinaria of the Roman Liturgy, or/and to bring a community of clergy to your region for that purpose.      Request that they join you in the search.

 (c) Ask a priest — or as many as it takes — to celebrate holy Mass or another sacrament in the forma extraordinaria.

Requests of this sort are a crucial. Repeating the request is equally, often even more important.  Nota bene, it is no longer necessary to ask the local Ordinary (bishop) for permissions or acquiescence. 

Important: Guidance and tailored-advice to make sense of your local situation and conditions are just a call away.  Phone NCCL at 610/435-2634 or click here to e-mail the Executive Director.  Countless Catholics have consulted this apostolate for decades with positive, concrete results to show for it — one new Mass or/and Liturgical community at a time.

  (d)  Keep a written list (for your records) of the names, addresses and telephone numbers of those priests and laity interested in celebrating or attending in the usus antiquior.III. If, after a thorough search, no priest can be found, it may be time to your local bishop asking him to assist by assigning a priest to celebrate according to the exact norms published in the Pope’s motu proprio of 7 July 2007, Summorum Pontificum. (Or it may be time to redimension your requests to the local clergy.) Keep in mind that the letter should be written not only for the bishop’s eyes, but for the Commission Ecclesia Dei in Rome.

See below for a sample letter and for helpful addresses etc.

NCCL will help you write to the bishop and/or to Rome.

In general, those unfamiliar with the praxis of the Holy See should not write without guidance — if, that is, one wishes to get it right the first time. First impressions can be lasting.  In addition, the poor reputation traditonalists enjoy in Rome and elsewhere is itself a difficult prejudice to overcome.  

Besides, NCCL practically guarantees results.

Sample Letter to Bishop/Cardinal/Prelate

E-Mail Address

His Excellency/Eminence
Most Reverend [NAME of LOCAL ORDINARY]
Bishop/Archbishop/Cardinal of [NAME of DIOCESE]
[full postal ADDRESS]

Your Excellency/Eminence:

His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has decreed, as surely you know, that “the Roman Missal promulgated by St. Pius V and reissued by Bl. John XXIII is to be considered as an extraordinary expression of [the] Lex orandi, and must be given due honour for its venerable and ancient usage.” (Apostolic Letter, Summorum Pontificum, July 7,2007.)

Please know that I [or “we”, if spouses co-sign for selves – and children, friends etc.] am/are sincerely attached to the Latin liturgical tradition. Furthermore, I/we humbly request that you allow a wide and generous application in this, our diocese, of His Holiness’ directives issued for use of the Roman Missal of 1962.

Our search for a priest to celebrate according to the forma extraordinaria has thus far been unsuccessful.  Could you please help, perhaps to assign one?

If you would prefer, perhaps a priest of one of the communities devoted to the usus antiquior could be invited to serve the faithful who desire the traditional Roman Liturgy.

Since we would rather propose a solution than hand your Excellency another problem to solve, it would give me/us much satisfaction to speak or meet with Your Excellency/Eminence to discern how my/our aspirations for the traditional Latin rites might be fulfilled.

Awaiting your prompt and positive response, I/we thank Your Excellency, and ask that You believe me/us your obedient servant(s).

in Christ and Mary,
[typed name]


Nota bene:

If the Bishop does not reply to your written request for a spiritual good within two weeks, it is most likely time to send copies of your correspondence to the Commission Ecclesia Dei, asking for them to provide for a solution. Contact NCCL for guidance, and addresses. E-mail the Executive Director,  or phone 610/435-2634.

The NCCL apostolate provides all services in charity, and depends completely on the charity of souls like you in turn.  Please generously support the unique and necessary no-compromise efforts of this humble apostolate.


Important or (potentially) Helpful Addresses 

William Joseph Cardinal Levada, President
Attention: Rev. Msgr. Guido Pozzo
Ecclesia Dei Commission
Piazza del S. Uffizio, 11

011-39-06/698-85-213 or 85-494 * fax 011-39-06/698-83-412

Rev. Father Eric Flood, FSSP
District Superior, Fraternity of St. Peter
P.O. Box 196
Elmhurst, PA 18416 USA

tel 570/842-4000  *  570/842-4001 fax
www.fssp.com   info@fssp.com

Mrs. Mary M. Kraychy, Executive Director
Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei
P.O. Box 2071
Glenview, IL 60025-6071 USA

tel 847/724-7151 *   847/724-7158 fax


The following can also be helpful:

IV. Hold a public event to manifest the grassroots aspiration to restore the traditional Latin rites in your diocese. For example:

 (1) Invite someone in-the-know to lecture on the history and/or current status of the traditional rites.

 (2) Place a small advertisement online or in the newspaper, seeking other interested Catholics.

 (3) Perform some act of public, collective charity with fellow Catholics wishing the restoration of the Roman missal; e.g., visit the sick (in a nursing home) or the imprisoned. For, “charity covereth a multitude of sins … without murmuring, … as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” [I Pet. iv:8-10],

 (4) Submit a story to the press about the growing movement of Catholics in your region who hope to see restored the traditional rites (e.g. to report on any of your events).

 (5) Have a supper, party or get-together to celebrate a Saint’s feast and to help support the effort.

 (6) Hold a bake-sale, coffee-klatch et cetera.

 (7) Place an ad in the parish bulletin of a pastor favorable to the effort.