Monday, December 29, 2008

Community Raving about Mass on December 28th!

After the Holy Mass on December 28th at St. Agnes Cathedral offered according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, there was certainly a buzz. Two firsts took place, one of our own received her First Holy Communion, Our Lord coming to her physically for the first time, during the course of a Mass offered according to the Extraordinary Form, something that an entire generation of people missed out on. May the Klump family and especially their daughter be blessed in this special time for them.

Also, one of the seminarians from the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Giarardeau attended the Mass "in choro", attending with cassock and surplice and biretta, sitting prominently in the sanctuary. Many of the faithful remarked on how wonderful it was to watch a young semiarian reverence the name of Jesus, taking off his brietta at the utterance of the Holy Name. Joe Kelly is certainly a model for other young seminarians to follow, faithful to the Holy Father's call for reform, reform at the most integral part of priestly life, the offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Motu Fever! Motu Proprio Worldwide!

The Extraordinary Form Mass is truly for all!

First Communion Update!

Wonderful news from the Extraordinary Form Mass in Springfield as one of our own prepares to receive her First Holy Communion this evening. Please keep the Klump Family in your thoughts and prayers during this special time for them.

Plenary Indulgence/Mass Schedule Update!

Those wishing to attend Holy Mass according to the Extraordinary Form on the 1st of January (a Holyday of Obligation), will be pleased to note that the Mass time has been moved for this day only to 1 PM, PLEASE TAKE NOTE. Again, for the sake of the faithful, a reminder that at this Mass the choir will sing the Veni Creator. The faithful who unite themselves to the offering of this hymn, interiorly or by joinging in the singing of it, gain, under the usual conditions, a plenary indulgence, provided they are aware and intend to receive it.
**A side note: The choir will use the footnoted text in force before the changes to the Hymn made in recent years. It can be found on the same page as the hymn, and it affects a number of verses. **

Today's Lesson in Catechism

Sunday December 28 - Lesson 1 - God

His Nature
His Attributes
God the Father
God the Son
God the Holy Ghost

While the Classes are geared towards those preparing to the receive the Sacraments, all are invited of any age.

Classes begin at 5:30 on the second floor of the old convent

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Solemnity of the Epiphany of Our Lord

The celebration of the Feast is of course going to be observed on the day prescribed, January 6th, with the possibility of the observance of the External Solemnity on a Sunday. More details on the date, and what this would mean to be posted following a decision.

Schedules for Volunteers

It seems advantageous that in addition to the altar boy schedule which can be found a few posts down, the rotation for the other positions essential to a smooth running of the offering of the Extraordinary Form will be posted soon on this site as well.

Ask a Trad - "Third" Confiteor Controversy

This Photo taken from the Solemn High Mass offered by the FSSP in Washington.

It has come to my attention on more than one occasion that some have questions surrounding the use of the "third" Confiteor (Confiteor before Holy Communion) at the Extraordinary Form Mass in Springfield.

In the reforms published by Blessed Pope John XXIII, this rite was noticeably absent. Nearly fifty years after the publication of that editio typica of the Roman Missal, the "third" Confiteor continues to be said at Masses supposedly said according to the 1962 Missal. Can these Masses be considered to be Holy Masses according to the Mass in force in 1962? Absolutely. Let me explain.

There are a number of reasons why the use of the "third" Confiteor is justified in the Extraordinary Form Mass:

1 It is an immemorial custom, and as such, the faithful more often than not expect it.

2. It is used by Cardinals and others officially representing the Ecclesia Dei Commission

3. The understanding of the Communion Rite in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite

One of the examples easiest to call to the mind of those who attend the Extraordinary Form of a custom trumping the law of the legislator is the case of the Masses in use from at least the year 1370. St. Pius V when he mandated the Roman Missal for the entire Church allowed those regions that had a Missal that could prove its existence to be at least 200 years old to retain the use of that Missal over the law that he intended to bind the entire Church. Custom is recognized as something very sacred because our customs and traditions become instruments in our faith, they help us nuture our faith and help us pass it down through the generations. This explains the leniency of the ecclesiastical legislators when it comes to custom.

The use of the "third" Confiteor is a custom that is centuries upon centuries old (an immemorial custom). According to the New Advent Website on Canon Law regarding customs they provide the following:

A custom is an unwritten law introduced by the continuous acts of the faithful with the consent of the legitimate legislator. Custom may be considered as a fact and as a law. As a fact, it is simply the frequent and free repetition of acts concerning the same thing; as a law, it is the result and consequence of that fact. Hence its name, which is derived from consuesco or consuefacio and denotes the frequency of the action. (Cap. Consuetudo v, Dist. i.)


(a) Considered according to extent, a custom is universal, if received by the whole Church; or general (though under another aspect, particular), if observed in an entire country or province; or special, if it obtains among smaller but perfect societies; or most special (specialissima) if among private individuals and imperfect societies. It is obvious that the last-named cannot elevate a custom into a legitimate law.
(b) Considered according to duration, custom is prescriptive or non-prescriptive. The former is subdivided, according to the amount of time requisite for a custom of fact to become a custom of law, into ordinary (i.e. ten or forty years) and immemorial.
(c) Considered according to method of introduction, a custom is judicial or extrajudicial. The first is that derived from forensic usage or precedent. This is of great importance in ecclesiastical circles, as the same prelates are generally both legislators and judges, i.e. the pope and bishops. Extrajudicial custom is introduced by the people, but its sanction becomes the more easy the larger the number of learned or prominent men who embrace it.
(d) Considered in its relation to law, a custom is according to law (juxta legem) when it interprets or confirms an existing statute; or beside the law (prœter legem) when no written legislation on the subject exists; or contrary to law (contra legem) when it derogates from or abrogates a statute already in force.

Now lets say we assume that the "third" Confieor was used prior to the reforms and yet had no way to prove it, and no way to prove that it is still used today by those who celebrate the Extraordinary Form Mass, in this circumstance we would have to discontinue its use. Back to New Advent on how customs can be revoked (my comments in black):

Customs may be revoked by a competent ecclesiastical legislator, in the same way and for the same reasons as other ordinances are abrogated.

Goodbye "third" Confiteor!

A later general law contrary to a general custom will nullify the latter, but a particular custom will not be abrogated by a general law, unless a clause to that effect be inserted. Even such a nullifying clause will not be sufficient for the abrogation of immemorial customs. The latter must be mentioned explicitly, for they are held not to be included in any general legal phrase, however sweeping its terms may be.

Hello "third" Confiteor! This practice was never explicitly abandoned, it was only noticeably absent from the liturgical books. (More on the path this can lead to later)

Customs may likewise be abrogated by contrary customs, or they may lose their legal force by the mere fact that they fall into desuetude. Finally, an authentic declaration that a custom is absolutely contrary to good morals (rumpens nervum disciplinœ) and detrimental to the interests of the hierarchy or of the faithful deprives it of its supposed legal value.

Most of the world retains the "third" Confiteor and hence a contrary universal custom has not found the force of law at this time.

In Masses offered by those from the Ecclesia Dei Commission, the use of the third confiteor is retained, and as such, its enduring use by the Church is recognized by a competent legislator in the matter. Pictures attesting to this fact will be posted soon. The pictures will be extremely important as use by a Bishop constitutes the proof of the confiteors retention even though it was omitted not just from the Roman Missal but from the Pontificale Romanum of bishops.

The Communion Rite in the Extraordinary Form is NOT considered to be an essential part of the Mass. By 1962, the commission that eventually drafted the Ordo Missae of Paul VI in 1969 already began to make changes in preparation for the gradual introduction of an entirely new Missal (what we know today as the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite). One of these changes was the view that the Communion Rite was an integral part of the Mass. This is in total contrast to the entire history behind the reception of Holy Communion of the faithful in the Roman Rite before the reforms. Holy Communion was commonly received outside of Holy Mass to denote clearly that it was not essential for the completion of the Sacrifice, but only the consumption of the Sacred Species by the priest. For various good reasons the change was made to have the Communion Rite inserted into the Mass long before the Second Vatican Council. This rite was seperate from the Mass, it was literally picked out of the liturgical books and inserted into the Mass. It began with a Confiteor, and then had the Misereatur, Indugentiam, and the Ecce Agnus Dei, just as we see during Mass, this is how the practice began. Holy Communion has from time immemorial, far surpassing the force of local custom, or any kind of particular law, been distributed to the faithful in this manner, whether in the context of the Mass or outside.
Indeed in Stockton, Missouri when the Holy Mass according to the Extraordinary Form was offered there, Father graciously offered members of the choir and those who had gone to Confession following the Mass, a chance to receive Holy Communion outside of the Mass using this Rite, as if one was observing a ceremony that they commonly know to take place DURING Mass.
Earlier in the post I alluded to a mentality that came after the reforms that everything previous had to be done away with if it was not mentioned explicitly in the rubrics. Hence the biretta fell into disuse, the priest ceased joining his fingers after the Consecration of the Sacred Species and countless other observances, simply because the books did not provide for their use.
Luckily we see many of these things being reintroduced, even into the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite, precisely because priests are educating themselves to realize that an omission is not the same as an all out notice of a now forbidden practice. The third Confetior has even a doctrinal symbolism attached to it that further helps the Mass be our guide in faith, our Catechism.
Right before we are met with our Creator in the Sacred Species at the "Ecce Agnus Dei", we have a period of recognition of our venial faults and a cleasing, just as what happens in Purgatory before the Beatific Vision. This is a beautiful doctrinal reality expressed so clearly in the context of the Holy Mass. The third confiteor then, provides not only a custom, or a cleansing from venial sins before Holy Communion, but even allows for a manifestation of a doctrinal truth. The Holy Mass as left to us from our fathers before us is truly a treasure and to let the "third" Confiteor fall into disuse would be in my humble opinion a poor way of doing our duty to transit and deposit the faith and the Mass and our Catholic practices to the next generation.
God Bless!

Plenary Indulgence!

A PLENARY INDULGENCE for those faithful who assist at Mass on January 1st (a Holy Day of Obligation) and who hear the Veni Creator sung, provided that they intend to get the Indulgence and fulfill the usual requirements.

Altar Boy Schedule - January 2009

Altar Boy Schedule

Octave of the Nativity (Holy Day) - Jared Gibbs (Book) - Dominic Jackson (Bell)
Holy Name of Jesus - Joshua Kramer (Book) - Michael Kramer (Bell)
Holy Family - Neil Klump (Thurifer) - Jared Gibbs (Crucifer) - Joshua Kramer (Book) - Austin Hoang (Bell) - Dominic Jackson (Boat) ***ANY ADDITIONAL SERVERS WILL BE ASSIGNED AS TORCH BEARERS***
3rd Sunday - Dominic Jackson (Book) - Michael Kramer (Bell)
4th Sunday - Neil Klump (Book) - Austin Hoang (Bell)

*Alternates for a High Mass will be assigned in the sacristy prior to Mass based on those who arrive*
*Alternates for Low Mass as follows*

Joshua Kramer will be covered by Austin Hoang (1st) Jared Gibbs (2nd)
Michael Kramer will be covered by Neil Klump (1st) Dominic Jackson (2nd)
Dominic Jackson will be covered by Neil Klump (1st) Austin Hoang (2nd)
Austin Hoang will be covered by Joshua Kramer (1st) Jared Gibbs (2nd)
Neil Klump will be covered by Dominic Jackson (1st) Jared Gibbs (2nd)
Jared Gibbs will be covered by Austin Hoang (1st) Joshua Kramer (2nd)
**In February, at LEAST 2 servers will be added to the schedule**
***Any scheduling conflicts? Please call Mike at 417.773.2606***

****Altar Boys are expected to arrive 10-15 minutes before the Mass and vest in their cassock and surplice promptly****

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


And it came to pass, that when they were there, her days were accomplished, that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
Luke 2:6-7
Douay-Rheims Bible

Monday, December 22, 2008

Ask a Trad II

A question comes from someone who prefers to remain anonymous: Can a priest who is offering the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Novus Ordo), use the so called "prayers at the foot of the altar" or recite the so called "Last Gospel"? The answer to both questions is yes. Let me explain.

A priest COULD lead the congregation in the prayers at the foot of the altar before the Entrance procession or could say them privately himself during the entrance procession as Father Fessio recently admitted he's been doing with the Ordinary Form since learning to offer the Extraordinary Form. A more risky position, one that I will need to do some further research on, is that a priest hypothetically could process out and begin the prayers at the foot of the altar from the words Introibo ad altare Dei etc instead of the Sign of the Cross, and then at their completion, ascend the altar, and begin the Mass as per usual, that is of course unless there is something in the general instruction that prohibts the priest stopping in the entrance procession. But the other two options certainly hold. Regarding the Last Gospel. The Mass is ended literally when the deacon or celebrant says "the Mass is ended", and so anything COULD be done here. However, just like with the prayers at the foot of the altar, my assumption is that it is the intention of the General Instruction for the Roman Missal to instruct the priest to process without delay to the altar at the start of Mass and recess without delay at the end of Mass. THAT being said, It is entirely within the priests rights to do what was originally done with the Last Gospel and recite it from the sacristy, perhaps even over a microphone for the congregation to hear, God willing this would occur after the congregation recited the St. Michael prayer, something that the Holy Father John Paul II, took initial steps to restore to the end of Mass. Intresting times are ahead, we may see changes just like these, particularly the prayers at the foot of the altar, and the St. Michael prayer restored to the Ordinary Form.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Mass Settings for High Mass, Christmas Carols

A list of Christmas Carols to be sung will be posted soon, all of the congregation is invited to participate on this joyful occasion.

After the Feast of the Nativity of Our Blessed Lord Jesus Christ. We will begin to incorporate Mass XI into our Mass settings used at St. Agnes Cathedral. Please print copies of the Kyrie, Gloria, Sanctus, and Agnus Dei, as they are not found in the red Ecclesia Dei booklets. Appropriate links will be posted soon. Check back often as we are not wanting anyone left out!

Christmas Schedule

Christmas Mass according to the 1962 Missal (Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite) will be offered at St. Agnes Cathedral at 7 PM on December 25th. Carols begin at 6:30. Veni, Veni Emmanuel!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Follow Up Reminder

It is also important to remember that anyone, at any parish, anywhere is entitled to a Traditional Latin Mass for their marriage or their funeral. If someone is in need of either of these two things please encourage them to contact Father Orthel. Tell your friends! Perhaps they don't know that they are entitled to be married and even buried the same way their family has been for centuries.

Important Reminder

Visiting our website from Willow Springs? Carthage? Perhaps any other location within driving distance of Springfield and seeking the Traditional Sacraments for you and/or your children? Classes are starting soon for those preparing outside of a homeschooled environment. Hence if you are intrested in any of the Sacraments please contact both Father Orthel and myself to let us know. Our email addresses are listed on the site. We need to hear from you soon in order for you to be able to receive the Sacraments this year!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Springfield Latin Mass Gift Goodies!

I urge everyone to take a moment to visit* (with the star included). The page is being updated soon with more products to help support the Traditional Latin Mass in Springfield and to show your support for the Traditional Latin Mass. Not in Springfield, or even Missouri? NO PROBLEM! There will be something on there for everyone! Tell your friends!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Ask a Trad!

I am starting this section in response to some questions floating around both here in Springfield and in other areas around the State and the Country.

The question is asked: What of the Ordinary of the Mass (Kyrie, Gloria, Creed,etc), must all the parts come from the same Mass setting whether in the Liber, Kyriale, or the work of some composer?

The answer is a resounding NO! You may use the Kyrie from Mass VIII, Gloria from Mass IX, Credo V, Sanctus from Byrd's Mass of Three Voices, and the Agnus Dei from Palestrina's Missa Papa Marcelli. The Gregorian Mass settings in the Liber Usualis are suggestions, they are not binding.

In Springfield, we have High Mass once a month and the choir knows Mass VIII. It will debut Mass XVII shortly for Gaudete Sunday, and then begin incorporating Mass XI into its cycle. It is wise to have at least a few of the Gregorian settings of the Mass known by the Choir. In my opinion, Masses VIII, IX, XI, and XVII are most appropriate if the choir is not professional, or does not meet regularly. It goes without mentioning of course, that the Funeral Mass should be learned.

While this concludes the first "Ask a Trad!" post, I am hoping that in the future we will receive email questions regarding rubrics for beyond the Communion Rail or guidelines for the choir. Any emails sent in this regard will be posted unless the questioner states that he prefer otherwise. God Bless!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Reform of the Reform in Springfield-Cape Girardeau Diocese!

Ft. Leonard Wood, a home to our brave soldiers, is preparing to invite in some of the Holy Fathers "Marshall Plan". Together with some traditional minded liturgists and musicians from Springfield, the Catholic Chapel there will be adding chanted Masses and other practices that have become rare in the Ordinary Form, into its parish life. Anticipated are things such as the Vidi Aquam or Asperges being sung before the Mass, a sung Prayers of the Faithful, traditional Gregorian hymns and propers, and so on (in the Ordinary Form, the possibilities are ENDLESS!). Please keep this community in your prayers, as many graces can be gained for them through this.

It is ESSENTIAL to keep in mind that this "Reform of the Reform" is equally as important as the return of the Traditional Rites of the Church. Sacrality must be restored where it was lost, and brought back in forms which were set aside. One Parish at a time.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Attn All!: Catechism Classes Starting!!!

Catechism Classes Begin December 21st!
Mark Your Calendars!
Where? St. Agnes Cathedral
When? 5:30 PM, Prior to Holy Mass with class dismissing in time for the Holy Rosary
Who? While classes are geared to help prepare for the Sacraments, all are invited!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

High Latin Mass DVD

If your parish is wanting to start the Traditional Latin High Mass this is the DVD for you!
  • Full-length instructional video of the Latin High Mass with Incense
  • See the priest’s rubrics of the Missa Cantata (High Mass) demonstrated
  • Observe the rubrics of liturgical music for the Extraordinary Form
  • Video of Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament
  • Stunning choral music by the St. Cecilia Choir of St. John Cantius Church, Chicago.
  • Evocative rendering of the Gregorian Chant propers and ordinary by the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius
  • Organ music by Br. Jonathan Ryan, S.J.C., featuring the church’s 101 year-old Kilgen organ.
  • BONUSvideo of sacristy preparation and vesting.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Upcoming Workshops - Extraordinary Form

Upcoming dates for Extraordinary Form Seminars:

Low Mass
January 26 - 30 (Monday - Friday) $300.00
Low Mass
April 27 - May 1 (Monday - Friday) $300.00
Sung Mass *NEW*
June 8 - June 12 (Monday - Friday) $250.00

The Program:

Each workshop comprises a five-day residential course at Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary including both classroom sessions and practical hands-on instruction. All instruction, training materials, meals, and room & board at the seminary are provided.

Low Mass Workshop:

  • A comprehensive introduction to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and its liturgical principles
  • An overview of the 1962 Roman Missal and liturgical calendar
  • A complete explanation and demonstration, with practical hands-on instruction, in the ceremony of Low Mass according to the 1962 Roman Missal
  • Tips and strategies for gaining proficiency in Latin
  • An introduction to Sung Mass and Gregorian Chant

Sung Mass Workshop:

  • Comprehensive hands-on instruction and training in the ceremonies of Sung and Solemn Mass
  • Comprehensive overview and practice in the chants of the Sung Mass
  • Complete training in all the altar server positions for Sung Mass


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Our History & Tradition

Pledging solidarity with Pope Benedict XVI and Bishop James Vann Johnston, this Latin Mass Community of Springfield Missouri weblog was created in January of 2008, as an online communication network for traditional Catholics of the Diocese of Springfield - Cape Girardeau, particularly those in Springfield and the surrounding areas.

The Latin Mass Community of Springfield Missouri is a traditional Catholic network within the Diocese of Springfield - Cape Girardeau and under the pastoral care of our local bishop. Our community consists of people of all ages, but we are particularly seeing growth among the youth and young families. All are welcome to join us for worship. While we hold no animosity toward the Ordinary Form of the liturgy, we are particularly appreciative of the solemnity and beauty offered by the Traditional Latin Mass. We are also mindful of those customs which were common to the Church prior to the 1970s. These include the use of Latin prayers, modest dress, chapel veils, Gregorian chant, frequent confessions along with a general appreciation for all things traditional. We are not a sect apart from the mainstream Church, but rather a community within the Diocese, seeking to enrich Catholic culture in Southwest Missouri, and become a blessing to all the parishes around us.

The Traditional Latin Mass (TLM), also known as the "Tridentine Mass," "Gregorian Mass," and "Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite," is the classical Latin Mass that was celebrated throughout nearly all of the western world prior to the introduction of the Novus Ordo Missae of Pope Paul VI in 1969. For some time after this, the TLM was relegated to obscurity until 1984 when Pope John Paul II issued a Letter entitled "Quattor abhinc annos" which provided a means for the TLM to make a restricted, but highly anticipated return. Due to increasing frequency of requests the Holy Father issued a Motu Proprio (decree of his own accord) in 1988 entitled "Ecclesia Dei" which created the 'Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter' and encouraged the bishops to allow generous use of the Traditional Latin Mass upon request within their local diocese.

On July 7th, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI issued another Motu Proprio on the TLM, entitled "Summorum Pontificum." Not even a generation after Ecclesia Dei was written, Summorum Pontificum clarified to all the faithful that the TLM had never been revoked and hence was indeed always permitted. Thus, to allow for the document to have its intended effect, a substantial increase in the number of TLM's, the former requirement to seek permission from the local ordinary was abolished. The Holy Father then addressed the Bishops, encouraging them to see to it that those requesting the TLM were provided for if a local priest could not be found, and in cases where it would be appropriate, to establish parishes exclusively dedicated to the TLM.

On February 10th, 2008, Bishop John J. Leibrecht established upon consultation with Father Fergus Monaghan, a monthly Traditional Latin Mass at Holy Trinity Church in Springfield Missouri, to be offered by Monsignor Raymond Orf. The event was widely covered by the Springfield news media, as it was the first Traditional Latin Mass to be celebrated in the city in over thirty years.

Father Joseph Orthel also began providing a weekly Traditional Latin Mass at Saint Peter the Apostle Church in Stockton Missouri, in his capacity as pastor, as provided for in Summorum Pontificum. Father James Vann Johnston, of Knoxville Tennessee, was consecrated as the new bishop on March 31st, 2008 taking possession of the See of Springfield - Cape Girardeau after Bishop Leibrecht's retirement. Shortly thereafter, Father Orthel was transferred to Saint Agnes Cathedral in Springfield, wherein Sunday and weekday celebrations of the TLM began at the Cathedral on July 1st, 2008. Gradually celebrations of the Traditional Latin Mass began cropping up in surrounding areas of Southwest Missouri. With that Pope Benedict XVI's liturgical renewal was underway in our Diocese.

Three SW Missouri Men Seek Priesthood

See video here

Below is the text...
(Springfield, MO) -- Practicing religion on a regular basis is something more and more young adults are taking into consideration.

But there's also a small group of people taking it a step further and choosing to commit for life.

The priesthood is a vocation inside the catholic church that takes a lot of intense preparation and soul searching. It's a call to service many young men are deciding to answer.

Prayer is what helps keep a group of Springfield brothers together.

The Kelly's all have a common goal ,and that is to become Catholic priests.

"It started when I was very young. I think I was in kindergarten when I first felt to be called a priest. My dad and I were going to mass one day, and I saw a priest walk by and I looked up at my dad and I said 'Dad I want to be a father' meaning I want to be priest. And ever since then the calling has always been in my heart," said Joe Kelly.

Joe is 20-years-old and is the youngest of the three and the first in his family to answer the call from Christ.

"I want to help souls that may be lost or who may be struggling. Even those who are at task with their lives or those that know what they are doing. I want to keep encouraging them and just keep helping them," he said...

read full story here

100th Anniversary Celebration of St. Francis de Sales Oratory in Saint Louis

The occasion was none other than the 100th Anniversary Celebration of the dedication of this church, and the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales was packed to standing-room only last Sunday, the 23rd of November. An estimated 1,200 souls came to assist at the Pontifical Solemn High Mass celebrated by the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Bishop Robert Hermann.

This magnificent church, now an Oratory administered by the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest was completed and dedicated for sacred use on November 26, 1908. One hundred years later, in his sermon Bishop Hermann pointed out the Oratory as a treasure for the whole Archdiocese, with the verticality of its architecture and its liturgy, and with the spirituality of St. Francis de Sales.

“We are not drawn to God by iron chains, but by sweet attractions and holy inspirations,” wrote St. Francis de Sales (d.1622), affectionately known as the “Gentleman Saint,” a Doctor of the Church, and the patron saint of this church. The splendid liturgy on Sunday was a perfect illustration of “sweet attractions and holy inspirations” meant by St. Francis de Sales, and the “verticality” spoken of by the Bishop. The same liturgy did for us last Sunday as it did for the congregation of one hundred years ago: it lifted our gaze and expanded our hearts upward, toward things eternal and toward God....

read full story here