Cdl. Burke to Offer Pontifical Mass at Wisconsin Shrine

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by David Nussman  •  •  November 29, 2017   

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LA CROSSE, Wis. ( - Cardinal Raymond Burke will offer Pontifical High Mass on Sunday, December 10. The Mass will be at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wisconsin, at 9:30 a.m.

The date of the Mass is between the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8 and the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe on December 12. (The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is a Holy Day of Obligation.) 

Cardinal Burke is known for his commitment to theological orthodoxy. He was one of the four cardinals behind the now-famous dubia. Dubia, from the Latin for "doubts" or "questions," refers to a document submitted to the Holy See asking for theological clarity on a handful of questions; in this case, the questions refer to ambiguities in Amoris Laetitia


The authors went public with the dubia in November 2016, after initially submitting the document to Pope Francis privately. Two of the dubia authors have since died, but the Holy Father still has not answered the questions.

Cardinal Burke is a leading advocate for traditional liturgy. The Pontifical Mass on December 10 will be the Traditional Latin Mass, also known as the Tridentine Mass or the Extraordinary Form. 

Based on the 1962 Missal, this older form of the Roman Rite is prayed entirely in Latin and has more prayers, longer prayers and more time kneeling than the New Mass. People are drawn to it because of the reverence and sense of humility. The atmosphere of sacred silence which envelops the Traditional Latin Mass enables both priest and faithful to engage in mental prayer — the highest form of prayer, as it engages the soul's highest faculty.


In 1970, the Traditional Latin Mass largely fell out of use with the introduction of the Novus Ordo ("New Order" of Mass) under Bl. Pope Paul VI. Even though the Traditional Latin Mass was never banned, Church authorities often treated the old Missal as though it had been banned. 

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But in 2007, then-Pope Benedict XVI released a document called Summorum Pontificum, which stated that the typical parish priest could say Mass according to the 1962 Missal, without needing special permission from his bishop.

Since the 1962 Missal "was never abrogated," the Supreme Pontiff explained, the policy of requiring special permission to use the 1962 Missal was superfluous and without cause. 

The Latin Mass has grown substantially in the wake of Summorum Pontificum. According to Church Militant's counting (using data from the "Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei"), there are 359 parishes in the United States and Canada that offer the Extraordinary Form every Sunday. Of these, 88 parishes have the Extraordinary Form daily.

Additionally, hundreds of other parishes in Canada and the United States offer Latin Mass at odd times or on odd schedules. For instance, some parishes have the Tridentine Mass once a week on a weekday, while other parishes might offer the Extraordinary Form once or twice a month. 

(These numbers, of course, do not include private Masses or schismatic chapels.) 


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