Tuesday 20 July 2021
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
So asked Juvenal in hs sixth satire; who will guard the guards, which has come to be used to ask to whom are those in power accountable? Well to God of course but also to their subjects. Although the pope canot be judged by any earthly court the sensus fidelium is always to be considered and bad papal laws can find themselves ignored by the faithful.` I`m still in shock over Traditionis Custodes. Silly really as it was clear as day that pope Francis loathes the traditional Catholic world. So why did he reach out to the SSPX, giving them faculties so their confessions and marriages would be valid? Who knows? After TC it surely wasn`t for any motive of giving traditional Mass groups an easier time that must be clear. Interesting that there is a major role in all this for archbishop Arthur Roche, the new head of the Congregation for Divine Worship. In his younger days he was private secretary to bishop William Gordon Wheeler, the bishop of Leeds (1966-1985) and, at the time the bishop in England most sympathetic to the cause to save the TLM. I remember Arthur coming to the English College in Rome in 1991 to get a licence ( ecclesiastical degree) so he could be advanced. Arthur`s rise to power has been remarkable but he has not always been known for pastoral sensitivity as when during his time as bishop of Leeds parishes were closed. In 2008 Roche's plans to close seven parishes produced vigorous protests, especially on the part of a parish in Allerton Bywater that offered a Latin Mass. I suspect we are in for a rough ride. The good news is our bishop, Robert Byrne, who is very sympathetic to the TLM. Masses will continue at St Joseph`s on Saturdays and Sundays. On holy days too I expect and for funerals and other sacraments. As the accompanying letter to TC makes clear that the pope`s aim is to only have one form of the Roman rite, the Paul VI version, we are then in a life and death battle. Much prayer will be needed. Our Lady Immaculate and St Cuthbert pray for us!