Some have been asking about our first Saturday Latin Masses in light of Pope Francis’ document, Traditiones Custodes, dated July 16 of this year, which put severe restrictions on the celebration of the Latin Mass. I have waited to provide an update because much still remains unclear about how to apply the document. As of now, Bishop Thomas has granted us temporary permission to continue as we were prior to the document’s promulgation, which means that we will resume our first Saturday Latin Masses in Payne at 8:00AM, with confessions starting at 7:15. Our next scheduled Latin Mass will be on November 13, because we have a funeral Mass scheduled for the first Saturday of that month. Please keep in mind that this is subject to change depending on how Bishop Thomas decides to move forward with the implementation of Pope Francis’ document.
Looking ahead on the calendar, November 1, All Saints Day, is a Monday, which means that it is not obligatory this year to attend Mass on this day. This, of course, follows the general rule that was determined years ago by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops that when a Holy Day falls on a Monday or Saturday, the obligation is dispensed. However, we will have Mass at 7:00 P.M. in the Paulding church for anyone who would still like to attend Mass that day.
We will have a special opportunity on November 2, All Souls Day. As you are aware, this day holds a special place in the Church’s liturgical year. While the day prior we celebrate all of the souls already in the heavenly court, on November 2 we call to mind all of the souls who are still in Purgatory. These souls are still being purified from any attachment to sin, still enduring the temporal punishment due to them on account of their sins (that is, any temporal punishment not already remitted from their prayers and good works done on earth), still waiting to eventually be released into heaven. Our prayers and penances here on earth are able to remit the amount of time that souls spend in Purgatory. In fact, the souls in Purgatory rely on our prayers to speed them through that process so that they can be released into heaven.
As the Church’s mission is the salvation of souls, we are always mindful to pray for the souls in Purgatory throughout the year, but especially on All Souls’ Day. For this purpose, Pope Benedict XV in 1915 granted all priests permission to celebrate three Masses on All Souls’ Day (on all other weekdays, priests are only permitted to celebrate two Masses). Because this permission is still in effect, and because praying for the dead is such an important part of our faith, I will be celebrating three Masses that day: the first Mass will be at 8:00 A.M. in Payne; the next Mass will be at 12:00 in Paulding; and the third will be at 7:00 P.M. in Antwerp. Please note that the intentions for the Mass are stipulated by Pope Benedict XV’s document: the first Mass is to be offered for a particular Mass intention (i.e. a regularly scheduled Mass intention), the second Mass is to be offered for all the faithful departed, and the third Mass is to be offered for the Pope’s intentions. Please come to any of these three Masses to pray for the dead!
Blessings to you all!