Letters to the Editor

An out-of-bounds comparison

I found the analogy used by John L. Allen Jr. in the Dec. 3 issue article “Tradition and transition” to...
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A eucharistic refresher course

Thank you for the interview about the Eucharist with Father Neil Xavier O’Donoghue, “A place to receive life,” in the...
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A Mass mischaracterization 

John Allen’s latest article “Tradition and transition” claims that the vast majority of Masses that were celebrated in the side...
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A second perspective regarding the ‘liturgy wars’

In response to John L. Allen’s article “Tradition and transition” in the Dec. 3 issue: My theological schooling is at the baccalaureate level, with courses in the novitiate and self-study, but “liturgy wars” would not be a term I’d choose about the worship of God. But it surely gets attention!

The issue is about believers wanting to deepen their relationship with God by restoring the Tridentine Latin Mass. Pope Francis’ refusal to restore it has provoked clergy and laity alike. The pope saw its return in opposition to the Second Vatican Council’s intent to let nothing interfere with the Church’s community life, like the confusing use of another language here — Latin being one of them. 

I know of a good number of Roman Catholics in the Bay Area, where I live, who have deepened their relationship with God by celebrating the Byzantine liturgy. It teaches how well the early Church understood the mystery of the Incarnation — its liturgy expresses it in every detail. The vernacular, English, is used there. The Scriptures take on much more meaning with the knowledge that the apostles St. Andrew and St. Paul, among others, composed the structures of these liturgies we pray from. 

There is much to be said for the graces that come from making an effort to encounter an ancient liturgical experience — and the Tridentine Mass isn’t the only one. 

— Sister Joyce Turnbull, RSM, Burlingame, California

A diocese’s controversial decision

Regarding the national news brief “The diocese that won’t host vaccination clinics” in the Dec. 3  issue: Why is the Diocese of Madison being slandered as “anti-life” for simply letting parishioners make their own decision on whether to get vaccinated or not? It is not a sin of omission not to endorse something we now know is not as “safe and effective” as originally led to believe.

— David Walter, Downey

An out-of-bounds comparison

I found the analogy used by John L. Allen Jr. in the Dec. 3 issue article “Tradition and transition” to be flippant and insulting. 

My concern is not with his point of view, which can be argued by theologians. But to compare those who assist at the Extraordinary Form of the Mass to a “cantankerous old uncle” that nobody wants around is beneath the standard of your magazine.

I give the Holy Father the benefit of the doubt, and believe that he is trying to do what he feels is best for the Church. I hope Allen prays, as do I, for the good of the Church and not that of his own ideology. He is welcome to his opinion, but should imbibe a bit of charity and humility. After all, he may be completely wrong. That happens when you’re human.

— Andre Coulombe, Sylmar 

A eucharistic refresher course

Thank you for the interview about the Eucharist with Father Neil Xavier O’Donoghue, “A place to receive life,” in the Nov. 19 issue. 

Something he said in the last two paragraphs had a profound effect on me. Although I’m a convert, attend Daily Mass, and adore Jesus truly present in the Blessed Sacrament, sometimes I get grumpy and find myself complaining in my head about almost everything: the music, the sound system, irreverent parishioners, etc.

Today, the Solemnity of Christ the King, was one of those days. But I remembered what the article said about the difference my attitude can make — a “hungover” attitude versus a Mother Teresa faith-filled attitude. So I quickly prayed to be more like Mother Teresa at this Mass. I’m happy to report that it worked — by the end of Mass,  I was uplifted and joyful to the point of tears.

— Marilyn Boussaid, St. James Church, Redondo Beach

A Mass mischaracterization 

John Allen’s latest article “Tradition and transition” claims that the vast majority of Masses that were celebrated in the side chapels of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome “were conducted in the older rite.”

This is an outrageously misleading statement. As a priest who has celebrated the Novus Ordo Mass at St. Peter’s every day for the last two decades, I guarantee that the majority of Masses have never been in the older Ordo. His statement is not only incorrect and misleading, but incendiary.

— Msgr. Larry Spiteri, Rome, Italy

What was Loyola Marymount thinking?

After reading the news on AngelusNews.com of LMU’s decision to allow a Planned Parenthood fundraiser on campus, I am outraged that a Catholic university would allow this in any shape or form. This should be dealt with at the highest level. 

We sent our daughter to LMU for four years and she received her degree there 30 years ago. If the school has changed to the degree of facilitating Planned Parenthood events, I would never recommend Catholic parents to do so in the future.

— Rudy Tekippe, Pasadena

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