Dear Readers of The Reign of Mary, Praised be Jesus and Mary!
As the year 2006 comes to a close, it is customary to take a look back at the important events of the year and to examine their significance in our lives. For traditional Catholics, this year wil] be remembered for the number of traditional priests who have passed into eternity during this time. In the last issue of The Reign of Mary, we commended to your prayers the departed souls of Fr. Francis LeBlanc (September 28) and Fr. James Wathen (November 7). We now add to this list of departed priests Fr. Eugene Heidt (October 20) and Fr. Lawrence Brey (November 21). Those who have known elderly priests (who pre-date Vatican Council II) will agree that it is a wonderful experience to hear them speak of their early struggles after Vatican II to keep the true Faith and to preserve the Latin Mass and the traditional sacraments. How many of them faced tremendous pressure to either follow the modernist changes or find themselves “on the street” without any financial support!
I recently recalled to mind one such priest when I visited the local religious goods store to purchase Christmas cards. I ran across the memorial book of the late Archbishop Daniel E. Sheehan of the Archdiocese of Omaha. After Vatican II, Archbishop Sheehan pressured one of his priests to follow Vatican II and the Novus Ordo. This case involved Fr. Clement Kubesh back in the early 70′s. At his age, he had no place to go and no way to support himself. Yet, trusting in Divine Providence, he was faithful to the teachings of the Catholic Church and to the Sacred Liturgy he had studied in the seminary. For Fr. Kubesh, Vatican II and the Novus Ordo were a contradiction to what he had been taught as a seminarian. So when Father had his “waterloo” with the Archbishop, he told him that he would not change because “Hell is not just for a long time – it is forever.” By these words he clearly indicated to the Archbishop that there would be no compromise on his part with the errors of modernism and false ecumenism. May God bless these older priests who have done so much in those earlier years to preserve the true Faith, the Mass and the sacraments, and to lay the groundwork for the traditional clergy today.
On another note, we look back over the year 2006 and ponder the token efforts by the Conciliar Church of Vatican II to assume a semblance of a return to tradition. There has been a promise of a greater latitude for the use of the Latin Mass and modern bishops have been instructed to implement in the next one to two years the correction of the “words of consecration” in the Novus Ordo from “for all” to “for many.”
I find this very interesting in light of the fact that even many Protestants in their worship services have all along used “for many” in their Last Supper narratives. In fact, when I was on my way one early Sunday morning for my first Mass, I turned on the radio in an attempt to stay away and picked up some religious service. I was not sure if it was a Novus Ordo or some Anglican or other Protestant service because they are all so similar. Not until I heard the words “which shall be shed … for many” did I realize that it certainly was not the Novus Ordo. At the end of the radio program came the announcement that it was a Methodist service. So this return to the words “for many” in the Novus Ordo will be more in line with many Protestant services today, and not really a step toward the true Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which the Novus Ordo is certainly not.
Nevertheless, this “correction” in the Novus Ordo and the permission for the more widespread use of the Latin Mass will not change the situation in the Conciliar Church . The Novus Ordo continues to be the Lutheran service it has always been since its introduction in 1969, and the practice of false ecumenism continues to spiritually poison so many modem Catholics. It will be truly unfortunate, however, if these token changes mislead naive souls with the false hope that the Conciliar Church of Vatican II will return to tradition. No, the changes in the Mass and sacraments, along with the practice of interfaith implemented after the Council, is nothing less than the Great Apostasy foretold by Our Lord and 51. Paul. And Our Lord also foretold that “Satan will deceive, if possible, even the elect.”
One last consideration of this past year 2006 is the wonderful growth of the true Faith, which is a cause of great hope. Our parishes are growing, converts are being received into the Faith, and our youth, who are the future of the Church, are receiving a Catholic education in our parish schools. I have three priests with me in Omaha and will soon have a fourth, and we still struggle to keep up with all the spiritual needs of the faithful in the Midwest . And this is the case everywhere.
May Our Lady continue to intercede for all of us that we might persevere in the New Year to come …
In Jesus and Mary,
Bishop Mark A. Pivarunas, CMRI
To contact the Editor:
Fr. Francisco Radecki, CMRI Editor of The Reign of Mary