Near Missed Masses: A new book by Fr. Armand de Malleray FSSP
Fr. Armand de Malleray, author of X-Ray of a Priest in a Field Hospital and Ego Eimi: It is I, has a new book out with Arouca Press titled Near Missed Masses: Ten Short Stories Based on Actual Events:
Can priests miss Mass? This little book light-heartedly depicts ten Holy Masses nearly missed by priests due to some opposition. From Kilimanjaro to Loch Ness, from Burma to Paris and more, the ten humorous short stories describe obstacles to the celebration of Holy Mass, thankfully overcome. The ten priests persevered, spurred by the conviction that Holy Mass: 1) honours God, whose extrinsic glory increases each time the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is offered; 2) helps souls through the temporal application of Christ’s saving merits that Holy Mass brings about; 3) fortifies priests, whose ontological raison d’être is to offer the divine Victim on the altar. Leaving aside theological arguments, Near Missed Masses entertainingly illustrates these truths through fiction.
Praise for Near Missed Masses
“In the real world, which is the world that God made, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the power station feeding the life of grace. Without such grace, we die. In this volume of true stories, Fr Armand de Malleray shows us the life-giving power of the Mass in a world darkened with devildom. The light-hearted and humorous tone of the stories makes them easily readable without ignoring the gravity of the topic.”
— Joseph Pearce, author of biographies of J. R. R. Tolkien, Oscar Wilde, C. S. Lewis, and G. K. Chesterton
“The unusual theme that unites a good number of the stories in this compendium is a scenario with which many a freshly-ordained priest will soon become familiar—the battle royal that often ensues in the attempt to secure an altar at which the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass may be offered in an atmosphere of recollection and decorum. With tact and good humour, Father de Malleray explores the intra-ecclesial prejudices and neuroses which have given rise to such a state of affairs, and illustrates how perseverance, charity and prayer are the most effective weapons we possess against suspicion and bigotry. An edifying read for both priests and laity, which we should pray will contribute to the healing of self-inflicted wounds which for too long have hampered the Church’s mission of evangelisation.”
— Fr Julian Large, Provost of the London Oratory
“The stories in this collection give us precious evidence of the hidden persistence of the grace of the true priestly vocation in unexpected situations. The ten narratives portray priestly candidates and priests of various ages and cultures. All reveal that secret dialogue in the soul that takes place when grace is at work. Based on my experience in teaching Thomistic philosophy to seminarians for a decade and catechesis to seminarians and priests as well as lay people, I cannot recommend this book highly enough for young Catholic men and for all those who nurture vocations, or who could, but who are not sufficiently alert to the quiet presence of the Holy Spirit in many young souls.”
— Dr Caroline Farey, Annunciation Catechesis
“In Near Missed Masses, Fr de Malleray finds a delightfully playful and imaginative way to reinvent true contemporary stories and drive home a serious point: the value of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and the zeal that we should have to celebrate (as priests) or attend (as layfaithful) this Sacrifice worthily and frequently. In this way, the book functions like the proverbial storeroom containing things both new and old!”
— Fr Henry Whisenant, Diocese of East Anglia (England)
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About the Author
Born in 1971 in the Loire Valley, Fr Armand de Malleray, FSSP, left France in 1994 after completing a Master’s Degree in Literature at the Sorbonne in Paris. He taught French at the Military Academy in Budapest before joining the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter in 1995 in Bavaria, where he was ordained in 2001. His first priestly assignment was in London, Southwark Archdiocese. He served in England since, apart from five years in Switzerland, then in an administrative position at his Fraternity’s headquarters. Since 2008, he has been the editor of Dowry, the quarterly magazine of his Fraternity in the UK & Ireland. Fr de Malleray has been chaplain to the international Juventutem youth movement since its inception in 2004 (cf. www.juventutem.org), and to the Confraternity of St Peter, his Fraternity’s international prayer-network for priestly vocations. Since 2015, he is the rector of St Mary’s Shrine in Warrington, Liverpool Archdiocese, where he also oversees the apostolate of his Fraternity in England and promotes vocations to the priesthood and to the religious life.
June 17, 2021
Bishop Leads Eucharistic Procession in Phoenix
A parishioner of FSSP Phoenix sends along this very heartening news:
I wanted to share some pictures of the Eucharistic Procession that was led by our Bishop Olmsted in Phoenix last Sunday. Our church, Mater Misericordiae, was the mid stopping point on the 3 mile procession through downtown. Father Passo led the procession around our city block.
It was an amazing honor and blessing for our parish and our city. I am told this is the first time our bishop has led such a procession. I hope it’s not the last. There was so much energy and enthusiasm.
We met the procession a block before it reached our church, and this is where Fr. Passo took up carrying our Lord. At this point our parish, led by our Helpers of the Immaculate Heart girls, threw rose petals before our Lord down the block until we reached our church where we had an altar set up waiting for our Lord just outside the main doors. Everyone at the parish donated roses, so we had petals from about 200 dozen roses. We filled the street and the air for that entire block with roses.
The procession stopped in front of Mater Misericordiae to kneel and pray and sing the O Salutaris Hostiam. Then we proceeded around the city block chanting the Litany of the Sacred Heart in Latin, led by our schola.
June 14, 2021
Inspiring Videos from FSSP Mexico
FSSP Mexico has produced a number of videos for its Summorum Pontificum conference, which begins later this week. Far from being merely promotions for the conference, the videos are well-produced and have a very inspirational tone that we thought readers of the Missive would enjoy. We hope that these videos, together with the priestly ordination in Guadalajara this Friday, are a sign of great things to come for the traditional Latin Mass in Mexico.
June 8, 2021
Friday in the Office: Aquinas on Corpus Christi
In the Office of Matins for the Friday after Corpus Christi, lessons four through six are taken from the Sermons of St Thomas Aquinas (Lesser works, 57.). Here the Angelic Doctor describes the origin and necessity of the feast, as well as its appropriateness for the week after the Pentecost octave.
“It would serve well therefore to the edifying of the faithful to make memorial of the institution of this so health-giving and so wonderful a Sacrament, that we may worship the unspeakable way by which the Divine Presence in-dwelleth in this Sacrament, Which we see, and we may praise the power of God whereby in this Sacrament are wrought so many wonders, and also give God some of those thanks which we owe unto Him for this so health-giving gift of His loving-kindness.
It is true that on Holy Thursday, on which day we know it to have been that He ordained this Sacrament, at the solemn celebration of the Mass, the memory of the institution thereof is more particularly mentioned. But all the rest of the services on that day deal chiefly with Christ Suffering, to the worshipping of Whom the Church, at that season, gives all her mind.
But, that the congregation of Christ’s faithful people might celebrate with a whole Festal Office all to itself the institution of this so great Sacrament, Urban IV, Bishop of Rome, being touched with love toward this said Sacrament, made a godly ordinance that the memory of the said institution should be celebrated by all the faithful upon the Fifth Day of the week, next after the Eighth Day of Pentecost.
From one end of the year to the other, we use this Sacrament to our souls’ health, and we more particularly celebrate the institution thereof at that season when the Holy Ghost taught the hearts of the disciples to acknowledge the mysteries thereof. For then it was, as we read, that they continued steadfastly in the breaking of bread (Acts ii. 42).
And, moreover, to the end that on the aforesaid Thursday, and the seven days next following, the memory of this health-giving Institution might be the more honorably celebrated, and the Feast thereby be held in more excellent worship, the above-named Bishop of Rome, after the manner of the doles which in Cathedral Churches are given to those who come to the singling or saying of the Canonical Hours by night and day, has out of his Apostolic bounty granted spiritual rewards to all who are personally present in the Church at the Canonical Hours during all this Festival, thereby to stir up the faithful to come to the keeping of this great Feast in greater eagerness and numbers.”
June 4, 2021
FSSP Ordinations 2021 Photopost
“Thou art a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek.”
We give thanks to Almighty God for our five newly ordained priests in the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter: Fr. John Audino, Fr. Joseph Dalimata, Fr. James Eichman, Fr. Nicholas Eichman, and Fr. Thu Truong.
June 1, 2021
Mexico’s First Traditional Ordination in Decades
Mexico will witness its first Traditional Ordination in decades as Rev. Mr. Joel Pinto Rodriguez, FSSP is ordained to the priesthood by His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke.
The ceremony will take place at the Sanctuary of the Martyrs in Guadalajara, Mexico on the Feast of the Sacred Heart, June 11th, 2021, at 5PM CST.
The ordination is open to the public and free of charge.
Also, the ceremony will be broadcast on LiveMass and Facebook.
The ordination will also be part of a larger event, the Third Congress of Summorum Pontificum, featuring H.E. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, Dr. Peter Kwasniewski, Fr. Javier Olivera Ravasi, Dr. John Pepino, Matt Fradd, Gregory DiPippo, and more, including the Very Rev. P. Andrzej Komorowski, FSSP Superior General, and Fr. Jonathan Romanowski, FSSP. Virtual tickets to view the conference online can be purchased here.
Note that space at the ordination is limited, and seats are reserved for those attending the conference, after which they will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
More information can be found at the Conference website: https://summorumpontificum.mx
May 26, 2021
FSSP Priestly Ordinations May 28, 2021
Please pray for our deacons who will be ordained to the priesthood this week in Lincoln, Nebraska:
* Rev. Mr. John Audino of Clifton Park, NY
* Rev. Mr. Joseph Dalimata of Coram, MT
* Rev. Mr. James Eichman of Fort Wayne, IN
* Rev. Mr. Nicholas Eichman of Fort Wayne, IN
* Rev. Mr. Thu Truong of Brentwood, TN
The Ordination Mass will take place at North American Martyrs Church on Friday, May 28 at 10:00 a.m. The celebrant will be the Most Rev. Joseph Perry, Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago. Mass is open to the public, but the reception afterwards at the Seminary is for family and friends only. The ceremony will be livestreamed on Friday, May 28 at 10 AM Central time, at LiveMass.net.
Also, Rev. Mr. Joel Pinto Rodriguez of Guadalajara, Jalisco Mexico will be ordained on June 11 at the Shrine of the Martyrs of Christ the King in Guadalajara. Conferring the priesthood will be His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke.
May 24, 2021
We hear a lot about equity nowadays, and that is why we are really bothered by “double-standards.”
After all, why should one person or group be governed by one set of rules and another by a different set? Or why do those who seem tasked with implementing equity, be it in the political, social, or financial realms, feel the need to make personal exceptions for themselves?
Why are large fuel-consuming jets taken to environmental summits, or fine food served at conferences about how to feed the hungry? This sounds hardly equitable.
As we all experienced draconian measures in response to the coronavirus that have invaded and upset the flow of daily life – measures carrying catastrophic social consequences that still stand in need of computation – perhaps many have also experienced rightful indignation over various government officials ignoring the very measures imposed upon their constituents.
But in a way that became small peanuts when compared to the blowback that began occurring when the measures started to go questioned. Something was rotten in Denmark, as the saying goes. So as things progressed and the scrutiny intensified, especially as stories and information kept changing from those in charge, an irony emerged: the same people who treat religion with contempt, who belittle those of Faith as ignoramuses and blind followers of authority, suddenly started demanding it from the masses. It was kind of fun to be like a god.
Science was invoked as an infallible authority (interesting how the viability of the unborn still goes ignored); dogmas were established, and new commandments were drawn up, complete with what constituted virtuous behavior. The expectation was for everyone to obey. Those who raised concerns became the new heretics for this emerging new religion that insisted on some form of blind faith.
But one irony tends to breed another.
For what is being demanded is not “faith,” and the Church would be the first to point that out. Never has the Church separated right reason from the virtue of faith.
In fact, her entire patristic and scholastic Tradition reveals the Church inviting the use of reason and critical thinking – the asking of questions – for the understanding of what she proposes for belief. The entire method of St. Thomas Aquinas, for instance, is a forum of questions, objections, answers, and resolutions.
True, grace is needed to ultimately make an act of faith, but even that is not against right reason. An act of faith simply admits where reason has limits, but such would not include an assent to contradictions. God expects us to humbly use the minds He gave us to arrive at the truth He desires us to know for the salvation of our souls. He is the Light that enlightens every man who comes into the world so that we can reasonably discern the credentials and credibility of Christianity.
This is why a recent paper published by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers merits comment here. The paper is quite critical of those who question the measures imposed in response to the coronavirus, not because of their failure to cite science in their objections, but – and here is the double-standard – because of their use of the same science and data to draw different conclusions. How dare this happen! It is almost reminiscent of the man born blind who challenges the Pharisees when he grew tired of their constant banter over who cured him: Thou was born wholly in sins and dost thou teach us? (Jn. 9:34)
The most embarrassing part is that the paper even admits that the criticism of such measures is actually grounded in “more scientific rigor, not less.” Since the outcome is different, however, and perhaps since it exposes a propagandist agenda, like those Pharisees who expelled the cured blind man from the Temple for confessing Christ, the paper accuses those critical of the measures of employing “weaponized critical thinking.”
Perhaps this marks the latest version of domestic terrorism. How opposite the methods of Holy Mother Church, who accepts scrutiny because it makes the Truth of the Gospel shine more brilliantly. How contrary to the Church’s insistence on freedom and the use of critical thinking to arrive at these saving truths of holy religion.
How different the work of the Holy Spirit who patiently enlightens the soul to understand the dogmas proposed by the Church so as to judge rightly about them and live accordingly.
At the end of the day, there is no matter more critical, and that requires the discipline of critical thinking, than salvation and where we spend eternity. Pentecost is all about that.
Perhaps those who demand blind faith in their new religion while criticizing the Spirit’s methods over what true Faith is really about should consider whether they have weaponized their critical thinking into some act of spiritual suicide. How they miss the equity and freedom that comes with belief in the True Faith.
Veni Sancte Spiritus!
May 21, 2021
FSSP Nigeria Property Tour, March 2021
Father Van der Putten from our FSSP Mission Tradition apostolate in Nigeria sent along a quick tour of the mission farm. Tropical agriculture is in full swing again this year!
The fields are being cleared and readied to grow corn and yams. Tropical permaculture crops such as papaya, banana trees, sugar cane, avocado, and guava surround the area.
Watch closely to see the tractors, generators, a truck and livestock that benefactors (like you) helped to provide!
May 19, 2021
Gatehouse Blessing: Regina Caeli in Houston
by Fr. William Rock, FSSP.
There were tornado and hail warnings, and it had rained heavily. But that was all the day before. By 10:00 am on Saturday, April 24, 2021, the ground around the outdoor St. Michael’s Shine was dry enough so that Mass could be said there without the faithful having to worry about mud.
The occasion for this outdoor Mass was the blessing of the newly constructed Gate House of Regina Caeli (Queen of Heaven) Parish in Houston, Texas. Once completed and occupied, this Gate House will serve as the rectory and office for this growing Fraternity apostolate. It will also boast of general-purpose rooms and a kitchen.
Fr. Charles Van Vliet, the founding and current pastor of Regina Caeli Parish, celebrated this Mass in thanksgiving for the near completion of the Gate House. The text of the Mass was that of the Queenship of Mary (May 31) with the additional orations for a Mass of Thanksgiving and St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen whose feast it was. During his homily, Fr. Van Vliet explained that the Gate House was named after Blessed Solanus Casey († A.D. 1957) of the Order of Friars Minor (Franciscans) Capuchin.
Because of the difficulties he had with his studies, when he was ordained to the Priesthood, Fr. Casey was designated as a simplex Priest. This meant that he was not given faculties to preach or hear Confessions. Because of these restrictions, Fr. Casey was assigned as the Porter of a monastery of his Order in Detroit, Michigan. In this role, he would greet those who were visiting the monastery. As time passed, he became renowned for the spiritual guidance he gave to those he interacted with during the fulfillment of his duties.
The choice of naming the Gate House after Blessed Solanus Casey is a fitting one. As Blessed Solanus Casey was the friar who would welcome those to the monastery, so will the Blessed Solanus Casey Gate House welcome the faithful into the campus of the Regina Caeli Parish; for once all of the constructions on the grounds are completed, the Gate House with its massive gate (not yet constructed or installed) will serve as the entrance to a complex with a church, a day chapel, St. Athanasius Hall (currently serving as a chapel), a school, and other possible buildings as well. The Gate House itself, and indeed the entire the complex, are inspired by the Spanish Missions in Texas.
At the conclusion of the Mass, Fr. Van Vliet changed into a cope and a procession made its way from the St. Michael’s Shrine to the Gate House chanting the Litany of the Saints along with its versicles, responses, and prayers. Once those were completed, Fr. Van Vliet intoned the Vidi Aquam for the blessing of houses/buildings during Paschaltide.
The schola continued the chant and verses of Psalm 117 as Father and several of the servers went through the building sprinkling Holy Water and filling the space with incense.
Antiphon. I saw water coming forth the temple on the right side, alleluia; and all those to whom this water came were saved, and shall say, alleluia, alleluia. (Ps. 117.) The Antiphon is repeated.℣. Show us, O Lord, Your mercy, alleluia.
℟. And grant us Your salvation, alleluia.
℣. O Lord, hear my prayer.
℟. And let my cry come to You.
℣. The Lord be with you.
℟. And with your spirit.
Let us pray.
Hear us, Lord, holy Father, almighty everlasting God. As at the time of the exodus from Egypt, You protected the homes of the Hebrews from the punishing angel when their doors were marked with the blood of the lamb which prefigured our Pasch in which Christ was immolated, so send Your holy angel from heaven to guard, foster, protect, visit, and defend all who live in this dwelling place. Through the same Christ our Lord.
Once he and the servers returned, Father completed the blessing and then added the following, the Capital Campaign Prayer:
Antiphon: Behold, I stand at the gate and knock. If any man shall hear my voice, and open to me the door, I will come into him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
℣. Lift up your gates, O ye princes, and be ye lifted up, O eternal gates.
℟. And the King of Glory shall enter in.
Let us pray.
O Lord Jesus Christ, who bears the key of David, so that none may shut when you open and none open when you shut, hear the devout prayers of your people who undertake the building of the Blessed Solanus Casey Gatehouse, and grant that we may begin our work under your inspiration, develop it by your grace, and complete it for your glory, who lives and reigns world without end. Amen.
Our Lady, Queen of Heaven, pray for us.
Saint Athanasius, pray for us.
Blessed Solanus Casey, pray for us.
The Pastor concluded the ceremony by giving a brief history of the progress of the Gate House, how it had been impacted by COVID, disruptions in the supply chains, and weather-related events (including a hurricane and the big freeze near the start of this year’s Lent).
The groundbreaking was held on Sunday, January 26, 2020. Shortly thereafter, on April 20, 2020, the construction contract was signed and, following the preparation of the site, construction began in May 2020. Fr. Van Vliet also thanked the faithful for their generosity both financial – the ~$2.5 million program has been fully funded by gifts and pledges through a Capital Campaign which was launched on June 10, 2018 – and for the hours spent by volunteers helping with work. Before departing to the Sacristy, Fr. Van Vliet bestowed his blessing on those gathered.
The festivities of the day closed with an indoor/outdoor buffet while members of the Parish’s Knights of Columbus council served as minders for those touring the Gate House. The weather, thankfully, was practically perfect for the approximately 170 faithful who attended.
Our Lady, Queen of Heaven, pray for us!
Saint Athanasius, pray for us!
Blessed Solanus Casey, pray for us!
For more information about the parish and to see detailed plans of the anticipated buildings, please visit www.reginacaeliparish.org.
Fr. William Rock, FSSP was ordained in the fall of 2019 and is currently in residence at Regina Caeli Parish in Houston, TX. Photos were provided by volunteers of Regina Caeli Parish.
May 17, 2021