Tradition and Revival in Mexico

Thanks to for drawing attention to this positive development for the Church. May the forthcoming conference promoting tradition in western Mexico bear much fruit!

Cdl. Raymond Burke, Fr. Javier Olivera Ravasi,Dr. Peter Kwasniewski and Dr. John Pepino

Organized by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP), the Third Conference on Summorum Pontificum will incorporate a series of events for “Catholics who want to learn more about the richness of their liturgical, artistic, theological and spiritual traditions,” according to the conference’s website

Taking place June 10–13 in Guadalajara, Mexico’s third-largest city, the gathering will feature presentations, Latin Masses, confirmation and an ordination.

Ahead of the conference, Fr. Daniel Heenan (of the FSSP) told Church Militant he hopes the rebirth of the Latin Mass will restore the failing Church in Mexico, where young people and the poor thirst for traditional worship and devotions.

“Many Catholics don’t know the traditional Mass, traditional music and traditional thought,” said Fr. Heenan, adding that the conference will help all Catholics enrich their faith. “The devotion and solemnity of the Traditional Latin Mass,” he noted, “can also enrich the ordinary form of the Mass.”

Speakers and participants include Cdl. Raymond Burke, Fr. Javier Olivera Ravasi, Dr. Peter Kwasniewski and Dr. John Pepino. All of the speakers are notable for their enthusiasm for encouraging the use of the Traditional Latin Mass and the celebration of the sacraments according to time-honored practices.

Cardinal Burke is a member of the Apostolic Signatura, the Vatican’s highest tribunal. He was prefect of that body until being removed by Pope Francis in 2014. Burke was one of the four cardinals responsible for the Dubia (questions) seeking clarity about the Pope’s apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia

Pope Francis removed Burke from the Congregation for Divine Worship in 2016. A notable defender of holy Tradition, Cdl. Burke has called pro-abortion Catholic politicians — including Joseph Biden and John Kerry — “apostates” who should refrain from Holy Communion.

Dr. John Pepino is a professor of Greek, Latin, history and Patristics at FSSP’s Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary in Nebraska. Father Javier Olivera Ravasi is an Argentine priest, attorney and writer and vlogger on theology, Church history and the Latin Mass.

In response to Church Militant, Dr. Pepino wrote that he will speak on the prayers of the Mass of the Sacred Heart, and also on the Sacred Heart in the writings of the Fathers of the Church.

Citing Cdl. Robert Sarah, Fr. Heenan told Church Militant: 

All Catholics are traditional Catholics because, as Catholics, we have to love Tradition. Pope Benedict XVI said in Summorum Pontificum that we should appreciate our liturgical traditions. It’s not just for some people. As commonly understood, traditional Catholics are those who have a love or an affinity for the Traditional Latin Mass.

Summorum Pontificum is a 2007 apostolic letter issued by Pope Benedict XVI, which gave priests broad permission to celebrate Mass in the Extraordinary Form — also called the Traditional Latin Mass. Pope Benedict wrote, “In parishes where a group of the faithful attached to the previous liturgical tradition stably exists, the parish priest should willingly accede to their requests to celebrate Holy Mass according to the rite of the 1962 Roman Missal, under the governance of the bishop.”

Benedict’s letter superseded Pope St. John Paul II’s motu proprio Ecclesia Dei, which had allowed individual bishops, under certain conditions, to establish places where the Traditional Latin Mass (or Tridentine Mass) could be celebrated.

Benedict XVI noted in Summorum Pontificum that Pope St. Gregory the Great (A.D. 540–602) had encouraged the use of the Roman rite throughout Western Europe, writing:

The sacred Liturgy, celebrated according to the Roman usage, enriched the faith and piety, as well as the culture, of numerous peoples.  It is well known that in every century of the Christian era, the Church’s Latin Liturgy in its various forms has inspired countless saints in their spiritual life, confirmed many peoples in the virtue of religion and enriched their devotion.

Despite the promulgation of Summorum Pontificum, bishops and priests in many countries have not encouraged the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass. For example, Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J., suggested recently the Tridentine Mass should be limited to elderly people and that children should be banned.

Fr. Thomas Reese

Many Mexican bishops and laity, Fr. Heenan said, appear to believe the Traditional Latin Mass is celebrated only by those no longer in communion with the Pope. “They think it is the sede vacante Mass,” he said, in reference to the belief that the current occupant of the Chair of Peter is not the true pontiff.  This misconception, he said, has led to a dearth of offerings of the Traditional Latin Mass in Mexico and Latin America as a whole.

Father Heenan said the conference in Mexico will serve as a “showcase for some important speakers in the traditional movement,” in the hope of making the Traditional Latin Mass more accepted worldwide, but especially in Latin America. “As an exposition of traditional Liturgy and traditional thought, it will offer a place for traditional Catholics from all over the Americas to gather,” he added. 

He said Cdl. Burke will celebrate three pontifical Masses, and will ordain Rev. Joel Pinto Rodriguez of Guadalajara as an FSSP priest.

Because of church closures due to COVID concerns and people falling away from the Faith, Fr. Heenan said there are concerns about whether Catholics will return to their parishes. He observed the beauty of traditional liturgies, art and chant lead people to the best and thus to the holy. 

The priest deplored statistics recently released by Mexico’s census, which revealed a precipitous drop in the number of Catholics with a concomitant rise in the number of atheists and non-believers. He pointed out that Vatican nuncio Abp. Franco Coppola told Mexican bishops last month that they had “lost not just one out of 100 of the flock but a fourth of them!

Abp. Franco Coppola

The 2020 Mexican census showed the numbers of Catholics dropped by 5 percentage points (from 82.7 to 77.7%) since 2010, due to the advance of secularism and Protestant sects. Father Heenan noted Mexico became Catholic back when the Traditional Latin Mass was universal and suggested that the Church might flourish again with traditional Liturgy and devotions. “Research shows that [Traditional Latin Mass] is overwhelmingly popular with young people, which is contrary to some perceptions,” he observed.

He added that this is particularly the case among Mexico’s poor and indigenous peoples, where traditional forms of worship and devotion remain popular.

Guadalajara is the capital of the state of Jalisco, at the center of a region that revolted against the atheistic government that rose to power after the Revolution of 1910. In 1926, after seeing churches seized by the government, priests jailed and sent into exile and believers persecuted, armed Catholics barricaded themselves in a Guadalajara church and confronted government troops. When they ran out of ammunition, they surrendered but saw their priest and his vicar murdered by soldiers.

The ensuing conflict lasted for three years and became known as the Cristero War or La Cristiada. Thousands of Catholics died defending their Faith, including 13-year-old St. José Sánchez del Río, who was raised to the altars by Pope Francis in 2016, and Fr. Miguel Pro, S.J., both of whom were executed by Mexico’s army.  Of 31 Mexican saints, 26 were martyrs of La Cristiada. Father Heenan told Church Militant it is poignant that the coming conference will be held in the state of Jalisco, where so many died for their Faith and where Mexico’s renewal might now begin.

Prayer for Mexico:

Our Lady of Guadelupe, gather your children, 
whom you saved from the demon gods of the Aztecs,
in the folds of your mantle and return them to the true faith. 
Through the power of the Holy Spirit, may they become 
warriors for Christ and defenders of the faith.
Vivo Cristo Rey! Amen.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Tradition and Revival in Mexico

  1. Reblogged this on Zero Lift-Off and commented:
    God Bless Cdl. Burke for his firm stand for what is right and in absolute accordance with the Church and Holy Scriptures! He and all of these men of the cloth are doing an exemplary job and are good brave souls! They bring tears to my eyes for not caving to the secularist thinking and pressures coming at them from many directions. Their integrity and virtues are so encouraging in this most tumultuous time when what these men offer the faithful of lasting value is seldom seen, and so few are willing to be so bold; not going with the status-quo like this!

    This line here like all of it actually just jumps off the page with enthusiasm as I read it, “their enthusiasm for encouraging the use of the Traditional Latin Mass and the celebration of the sacraments according to time-honored practices.” I love that there are many of us still from these honorable men of the cloth to many of we lay people or parishioners in the multitudes of the faithful that see this matter so clearly, and will even fight to maintain the traditional practices that have survived all the ages for a good reason; namely they are correct!

    I derive such happiness and strength knowing this is happening, “Pope Francis removed Burke from the Congregation for Divine Worship in 2016. A notable defender of holy Tradition, Cdl. Burke has called pro-abortion Catholic politicians — including Joseph Biden and John Kerry — “apostates” who should refrain from Holy Communion.” God bless Cdl. Burke for being a heroic man and member of the Church hierarchy and performing his duties valiantly as a soldier for God’s Church. May Bergoglio get what he deserves from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Those politicians and any like them absolutely must be forbade to partake of the Blessed Holy Eucharist as Cdl. Burke has called for with absolutely good reason; especially in the case of these two men that I consider true despots!
    “From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded” (Luke 12:48).

    Even if the end of the world is coming soon or is in sight we can rest assured that many of us like these men are not going to ever quit and will bring good tidings and acts to counter any and all evils that are being propagated or tossed at the human race! Amen.

    God bless you.
    Brother in Christ Jesus,
    Lawrence Morra III


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s