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The Faithful React to Dark Rumors about the TLM

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Fred Simon was born before Vatican II.  He still remembers the ornate gothic paintings in the German parish where he attended Mass with his father and grandfather.  Then, one day, the entire interior was whitewashed and a new altar was placed in the middle of the sanctuary. 

It was the beginning of Simon’s exile from the TLM. 

Years later, after a priest invited him to see a TLM, Simon found his way back to the Mass of the Ages.  He was “awed by the reverence and holiness” he witnessed on the altar. 

“There was no turning back for me,” Simon says.  “I even began serving on the altar as well.  Throughout COVID I was the only server for the Mass.”

Then, after Simon moved to another parish, word came that the TLM was being cancelled due to Traditionis Custodes—the papal text that launched an “atom bomb” against the TLM.

Simon announced the news of the cancelled TLM on social media.

Now, however, there are troubling rumors that the Vatican may be seeking a “final solution” to the alleged problem of the TLM.  As already discussed here at OnePeterFive, the respected blog Rorate Caeli, citing the “most credible sources,” reported on Monday:

An attempt is being made to implement, as soon as possible, a Vatican document with a stringent, radical, and final solution banning the Traditional Latin Mass. The same ideologues who imposed Traditionis Custodes and its implementation, and who are still frustrated with its apparently slow results, especially in the United States and France, want to ban it and shut it down everywhere and immediately. They want to do it while Francis is still in power. They want to make it as wide, final, and irreversible as possible.

It’s the type of news that initially left Amanda Farnum, a Catholic wife and mother, feeling “very discouraged and worried.” 

Farnum loves the TLM and believes it has “provided a very sturdy foundation of faith” for her family. 

“When you find the TLM, you find all of Tradition that has been forgotten,” she says.  “I also really love the silence, peace, and reverence to Jesus.”

In February of this year—because of Traditionis Custodes—Farnum’s TLM was cancelled. 

“The community has been devastated and decimated,” she says. “We have all scattered and found different solutions. It truly is tragic.” 

Farnum and her husband now have plans to move to be near an FSSP parish.  They’re trying to do the best they can for their family in the present moment—and hoping that the Ecclesia Dei communities, including the FSSP, will be “left alone for a little while longer.”

Adrian Kelley is another Catholic keeping a close eye on what happens to the FSSP.  He currently attends an FSSP parish and loves the TLM for its “beauty,” “reverence to Our Lord,” “history,” and sense of “community.” 

Kelley and his wife are expecting their ninth child, and they feel totally at home with the other Catholics at his parish.  Kelley says his TLM has received “total support” from his bishop. 

Ultimately, Simon, Farnum, and Kelley are all Catholics who love and attend the Mass of the Ages—but have found themselves in the crossfire of an ongoing Church war over it. 

It’s a war that intensified in 2007, when Pope Benedict XVI’s Summorum Pontificum liberalized access to the TLM.  At that time, Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini—the leader of the St. Gallen Mafia—publicly undermined the pope’s document.  “I will not [celebrate the TLM],” Martini said, point-blank.

While Martini died in 2012, today his spirit lives on in key revolutionaries, including Professor Andrea Grillo.  Grillo has a history of treating Martini as a prophet of this pontificate—and the professor is now being called the “mind” behind Pope Francis’s Traditionis Custodes

“Many indications point to Professor Grillo as an author or at least inspirer of the document, serving as the Pontiff’s ‘house’ liturgist and theologian, as he is often called in Rome,” writes Dr. Peter Kwasniewski. “For years now, Professor Grillo has espoused avant la lettre the tenets of Traditionis Custodes, maintaining that the Mass of Paul VI represents the exclusive rite of the Roman Church and that the Traditional Latin Mass should be legislated in such a way that its disappearance is assured.”

In a recent interview with Grillo, one Italian News source described the influence of Grillo: “In the view of many in the Roman Curia, for Pope Francis, Prof Grillo is on liturgy what Fr James Martin is on homosexuality.”

Which brings us back to Simon.

“I do believe the ‘final solution’ is coming,” says Simon.  “This pontificate is obsessed with eliminating the TLM. …Traditionis Custodes is the process of eliminating the ‘past.’”

The way Simon sees it, this struggle needs to be understood in terms of a passion and a resurrection. 

“There are many prophecies about the Church being persecuted and reduced in size and faith,” says Simon.  “I believe we are living through some of these prophecies. Things will definitely get worse before they, once again, are restored to their former glory.”

“I know we will endure a passion, yet to come, but also a wonderful resurrection,” Simon adds.  “What all Catholics need to do now is pray, continue to believe, and have faith.”

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