Ascension Thursday TLM set at Silver Spring

A Low Mass will be offered at 5:00 pm this Thursday afternoon, May 5, at the Traditional Latin Mass Congregation of Silver Spring, Maryland. Reverend Father David Friel of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will be the celebrant of the Mass of the Feast of the Ascension.

Silver Spring TLM Congregation meets at the Historic Church of St. John the Evangelist, 9700 Rosensteel Avenue, Forest Glen. Ample free parking is available.

Members of society share reciprocal duties as well as rights

From Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate (2009):

“The reality of human solidarity, which is a benefit for us, also imposes a duty.”105 Many people today would claim that they owe nothing to anyone, except to themselves. They are concerned only with their rights, and they often have great difficulty in taking responsibility for their own and other people’s integral development. Hence it is important to call for a renewed reflection on how rights presuppose duties, if they are not to become mere licence.106 Nowadays we are witnessing a grave inconsistency. On the one hand, appeals are made to alleged rights, arbitrary and non-essential in nature,* accompanied by the demand that they be recognized and promoted by public structures, while, on the other hand, elementary and basic rights remain unacknowledged and are violated in much of the world.107 A link has often been noted between claims to a “right to excess”, and even to transgression and vice, within affluent societies, and the lack of food, drinkable water, basic instruction and elementary health care in areas of the underdeveloped world and on the outskirts of large metropolitan centres. The link consists in this: individual rights, when detached from a framework of duties which grants them their full meaning, can run wild, leading to an escalation of demands which is effectively unlimited and indiscriminate. An overemphasis on rights leads to a disregard for duties. Duties set a limit on rights because they point to the anthropological and ethical framework of which rights are a part, in this way ensuring that they do not become licence. Duties thereby reinforce rights and call for their defence and promotion as a task to be undertaken in the service of the common good. Otherwise, if the only basis of human rights is to be found in the deliberations of an assembly of citizens, those rights can be changed at any time, and so the duty to respect and pursue them fades from the common consciousness. Governments and international bodies can then lose sight of the objectivity and “inviolability” of rights. When this happens, the authentic development of peoples is endangered.108 Such a way of thinking and acting compromises the authority of international bodies, especially in the eyes of those countries most in need of development. Indeed, the latter demand that the international community take up the duty of helping them to be “artisans of their own destiny,”109 that is, to take up duties of their own. The sharing of reciprocal duties is a more powerful incentive to action than the mere assertion of rights.

105 Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Populorum Progressio, 17: Acta Apostolicæ Sedis [AAS] 59 (1967), 265-266.
106 Cf. John Paul II, Message for the 2003 World Day of Peace, 5: AAS 95 (2003), 343.
107 Cf. ibid.
108 Cf. Benedict XVI, Message for the 2007 World Day of Peace, 13.
109 Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Populorum Progressio, 65: loc. cit., 289.

Caritas in Veritate 43

* Those to sexual and “reproductive” license and to the destruction and distortion of family structures being the most notorious examples, then and now. — Ed.

Fr. Langevin to offer Dominican Rite Mass Sunday at Silver Spring

A Low Mass in the Traditional Dominican Rite will be offered Sunday, May 21, at the Traditional Latin Mass Congregation of Silver Spring, Maryland. The celebrant of the Mass of the Fifth Sunday after Easter will be Reverend Father Dominic Langevin op, Instructor in Systematic Theology at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington.

Holy Mass will begin at 8:00 am. Confessions will be heard from 7:10 to 7:50 am.

Silver Spring TLM Congregation meets at the Historic Church of St. John the Evangelist, 9700 Rosensteel Avenue, Forest Glen. Ample free parking is available.

Unreasoned globalization threatens the human family

From Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate (2009):

More than forty years after Populorum Progressio, its basic theme, namely progress, remains an open question, made all the more acute and urgent by the current economic and financial crisis. If some areas of the globe, with a history of poverty, have experienced remarkable changes in terms of their economic growth and their share in world production, other zones are still living in a situation of deprivation comparable to that which existed at the time of Paul VI, and in some cases one can even speak of a deterioration. It is significant that some of the causes of this situation were identified in Populorum Progressio, such as the high tariffs imposed by economically developed countries, which still make it difficult for the products of poor countries to gain a foothold in the markets of rich countries. Other causes, however, mentioned only in passing in the Encyclical, have since emerged with greater clarity. A case in point would be the evaluation of the process of decolonization, then at its height. Paul VI hoped to see the journey towards autonomy unfold freely and in peace. More than forty years later, we must acknowledge how difficult this journey has been, both because of new forms of colonialism and continued dependence on old and new foreign powers, and because of grave irresponsibility within the very countries that have achieved independence.

The principal new feature has been the explosion of worldwide interdependence, commonly known as globalization. Paul VI had partially foreseen it, but the ferocious pace at which it has evolved could not have been anticipated. Originating within economically developed countries, this process by its nature has spread to include all economies. It has been the principal driving force behind the emergence from underdevelopment of whole regions, and in itself it represents a great opportunity. Nevertheless, without the guidance of charity in truth, this global force could cause unprecedented damage and create new divisions within the human family. Hence charity and truth confront us with an altogether new and creative challenge, one that is certainly vast and complex. It is about broadening the scope of reason and making it capable of knowing and directing these powerful new forces, animating them within the perspective of that “civilization of love” whose seed God has planted in every people, in every culture.

Caritas in Veritate 33

Msgr. Smith to offer Sunday TLM at Silver Spring

A Low Mass will be offered this Sunday, May 7, at the Traditional Latin Mass Congregation of Silver Spring, Maryland. Reverend Monsignor K. Bartholomew Smith, pastor of St. Bernadette parish in Four Corners, will be the celebrant of the Mass of the Third Sunday after Easter. This Mass has been added to our seven-day schedule.

Holy Mass will begin at 8:00 am. Confessions will be heard from 7:30 to 7:55 am. Fr. George, Pastor, and Our Lady Queen of Poland Parish Congregation extend a full welcome to the Traditional Latin Mass congregation to join with them in celebration of Polish Constitution Day on the church grounds after the noon Polish Mass.

Silver Spring TLM Congregation meets at the Historic Church of St. John the Evangelist, 9700 Rosensteel Avenue, Forest Glen. Ample free parking is available.

Cultural exchange must not be allowed to submerge human identity

From Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate (2009):

On the cultural plane, compared with Paul VI’s day, the difference is even more marked. At that time cultures were relatively well defined and had greater opportunity to defend themselves against attempts to merge them into one. Today the possibilities of interaction between cultures have increased significantly, giving rise to new openings for intercultural dialogue: a dialogue that, if it is to be effective, has to set out from a deep-seated knowledge of the specific identity of the various dialogue partners. Let it not be forgotten that the increased commercialization of cultural exchange today leads to a twofold danger. First, one may observe a cultural eclecticism that is often assumed uncritically: cultures are simply placed alongside one another and viewed as substantially equivalent and interchangeable. This easily yields to a relativism that does not serve true intercultural dialogue; on the social plane, cultural relativism has the effect that cultural groups coexist side by side, but remain separate, with no authentic dialogue and therefore with no true integration. Secondly, the opposite danger exists, that of cultural levelling and indiscriminate acceptance of types of conduct and life-styles. In this way one loses sight of the profound significance of the culture of different nations, of the traditions of the various peoples, by which the individual defines himself in relation to life’s fundamental questions.62 What eclecticism and cultural levelling have in common is the separation of culture from human nature. Thus, cultures can no longer define themselves within a nature that transcends them,63 and man ends up being reduced to a mere cultural statistic. When this happens, humanity runs new risks of enslavement and manipulation.

62 Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Centesimus Annus, 24: Acta Apostolicæ Sedis [AAS] 83 (1991), 821-822.
63 Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Veritatis Splendor (6 August 1993), 33, 46, 51: AAS 85 (1993), 1160, 1169-1171, 1174-1175; Id., Address to the Assembly of the United Nations, 5 October 1995, 3.

Caritas in Veritate 26

Weekly Sunday TLM to begin at Alexandria St. Rita

A weekly Sunday Traditional Latin Mass will be offered at St. Rita of Cascia Church in Alexandria beginning this coming Sunday, May 7, at 9:30 am. These Masses will be in addition to the regular Low Masses that are offered at St. Rita’s on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 7:30 pm.

The Traditional Mass on the first and fourth Sunday of each month will be a Missa Cantata. Low Mass will be offered on the other Sundays. These Masses will appear on our seven-day schedule.

St. Rita of Cascia Church is located at 3815 Russell Road, at the north end of Alexandria’s Del Ray neighborhood. Ample free parking is available on the church’s lots, which may be entered either from Russell Road or adjacent Mount Vernon Avenue.

Unfulfilled expectations demand that we re-examine our goals and aspirations

From Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate (2009):

Paul VI had an articulated vision of development. He understood the term to indicate the goal of rescuing peoples, first and foremost, from hunger, deprivation, endemic diseases and illiteracy. From the economic point of view, this meant their active participation, on equal terms, in the international economic process; from the social point of view, it meant their evolution into educated societies marked by solidarity; from the political point of view, it meant the consolidation of democratic regimes capable of ensuring freedom and peace. After so many years, as we observe with concern the developments and perspectives of the succession of crises that afflict the world today, we ask to what extent Paul VI’s expectations have been fulfilled by the model of development adopted in recent decades. We recognize, therefore, that the Church had good reason to be concerned about the capacity of a purely technological society to set realistic goals and to make good use of the instruments at its disposal. Profit is useful if it serves as a means towards an end that provides a sense both of how to produce it and how to make good use of it. Once profit becomes the exclusive goal, if it is produced by improper means and without the common good as its ultimate end, it risks destroying wealth and creating poverty. The economic development that Paul VI hoped to see was meant to produce real growth, of benefit to everyone and genuinely sustainable. It is true that growth has taken place, and it continues to be a positive factor that has lifted billions of people out of misery — recently it has given many countries the possibility of becoming effective players in international politics. Yet it must be acknowledged that this same economic growth has been and continues to be weighed down by malfunctions and dramatic problems, highlighted even further by the current crisis.* This presents us with choices that cannot be postponed concerning nothing less than the destiny of man, who, moreover, cannot prescind from his nature. The technical forces in play, the global interrelations, the damaging effects on the real economy of badly managed and largely speculative financial dealing, large-scale migration of peoples, often provoked by some particular circumstance and then given insufficient attention, the unregulated exploitation of the earth’s resources: all this leads us today to reflect on the measures that would be necessary to provide a solution to problems that are not only new in comparison to those addressed by Pope Paul VI, but also, and above all, of decisive impact upon the present and future good of humanity. The different aspects of the crisis, its solutions, and any new development that the future may bring, are increasingly interconnected, they imply one another, they require new efforts of holistic understanding and a new humanistic synthesis. The complexity and gravity of the present economic situation rightly cause us concern, but we must adopt a realistic attitude as we take up with confidence and hope the new responsibilities to which we are called by the prospect of a world in need of profound cultural renewal, a world that needs to rediscover fundamental values on which to build a better future. The current crisis obliges us to re-plan our journey, to set ourselves new rules and to discover new forms of commitment, to build on positive experiences and to reject negative ones. The crisis thus becomes an opportunity for discernment, in which to shape a new vision for the future. In this spirit, with confidence rather than resignation, it is appropriate to address the difficulties of the present time.

Caritas in Veritate 21

* Pope Benedict issued this encyclical in the wake of the financial crisis of 2007-2008. — Ed.

Fr. Carr to offer TLM on Monday morning, Friday evening

The Traditional Latin Mass (Extraordinary Form) will be offered on Monday morning and Friday evenng of this week by Reverend Father Richard Carr at St. Michael Church, 7401 St. Michael’s Lane, Annandale.

On Monday morning, May 1, at 6:45 am, Low Mass of the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker will be offered.  Low Mass of the Feast of Pope St. Pius V will be offered at 5:30 pm on Friday evening, May 5.

Please note that these Masses are scheduled at the discretion of the celebrant, and are not part of the parish’s published Mass calendar. These Masses have been added to our seven-day schedule.

Fr. Langevin to offer Dominican Rite Mass Sunday at Silver Spring

A Low Mass in the Traditional Dominican Rite will be offered Sunday, April 30, at the Traditional Latin Mass Congregation of Silver Spring, Maryland. The celebrant of the Mass of the Second Sunday after Easter will be Reverend Father Dominic Langevin op, Instructor in Systematic Theology at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington.

Holy Mass will begin at 8:00 am. Confessions will be heard from 7:10 to 7:50 am.

Silver Spring TLM Congregation meets at the Historic Church of St. John the Evangelist, 9700 Rosensteel Avenue, Forest Glen. Ample free parking is available.