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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Ordinations Make the News

The following article appeared  on the Catholic News Agency concerning our recent ordinations in Rome.

Group celebrates first ordinations since reunion with Rome

Ordination at the Fraternity of St. Peter's Roman Parish, Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini in Rome, Italy. June 22, 2013. Credit: Alan Holdren/CNA.

Rome, Italy, Jun 29, 2013 / 06:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- For the first time since coming into clear union with the Pope, the religious institute the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer celebrated the priestly ordination of two of its members on June 22.

Father Magdala Maria and Father Yousef Marie were ordained alongside Fr. Massimo Botta of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter by Archbishop Guido Pozzo, head of the Office of Papal Charities, in Rome.

Both orders are dedicated to celebrating the liturgy in the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite – as was done prior to the reforms of the Second Vatican Council.

The Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer, also called the Transalpine Redemptorists, were founded in 1987 and were associated with the Society of St. Pius X.

After Benedict XVI issued a document affirming the value of the extraordinary form, also called the traditional Latin Mass, the Transalpine Redemptorists responded by petitioning the Vatican to regularize their situation.

On June 26, 2008, their petition was granted and they were no longer associated with the schismatic Society of St. Pius X. The group now enjoys “undisputed and peaceful possession of Communion with the Holy See.”

Fr. Botta, who was ordained for the Fraternity of St. Peter, told CNA that “my vocation to the priesthood came pretty quickly.”

“I was doing grad school in economics, and I found that economics was taking me the complete opposite direction of what I felt truth should be.”

“During that time I just felt a strong calling to be a priest, and I didn’t even know about the Fraternity of St. Peter.”

He explained that his brother introduced him to the Fraternity, and it appealed to him. “I applied and was accepted and that was it; it was very quick, a question of six months.”

The newly ordained priest noted, “it seems like God had prepared me since I was young for this.”

Fr. Botta, who studied seven years at Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary in Nebraska, has been sent back to the Fraternity's Immaculate Conception parish in Omaha for his first assignment.

His mother, who is Roman, told CNA that he has been looking forward to it, that he is happy, and that she is sure he will work hard.

Gabriella Botta said that of her four children, Massimo was the one she least expected would ever become a priest.

“He was the naughtiest, he had a band, and loved Metallica music,” said Botta. “And suddenly he said, ‘Mom, I want to join the seminary,’ so it was a real big surprise.”

She described him as a shy boy who loved life, his school friends, music and “all of the things any young person loves.”

“I think for a mother it’s actually the greatest event, because I think that somewhere in my life I must have really done something good to have the honor of our Lord calling our son to the priesthood.”

“I think he has changed,” she said. “He has become a man now and after seven years of seminary life, it was just two days ago that he said ‘Mom, I’m beginning to be scared.'”

Fr. John Brancich, pastor at Omaha's Immaculate Conception parish, emphasized that it was a “great grace” for Fr. Botto to be ordained in his home area.

“It’s also a great grace for the Fraternity, because this is the first time that we’ve had ordinations in Rome.”

“This is a very special day for us because the order is so connected with Rome and St. Peter, and the Chair of St. Peter and the Pope. This is a very happy moment for both of our societies.”

Fr. Brancich explained that the traditional Latin Mass has found a “great resurgence” among young people and young clergy, as well as older people “who have rediscovered it.”

“One thing that they consistently comment on is the sense of reverence, the sense of sacredness that they feel when they attend the Mass,” which strongly conveys the worship of God.

He underscored that the goal of being at Mass is to pray, and that the definition of prayer is to “lift your mind and heart to God.”

The ordination took place at Most Holy Trinity of the Pilgrims, the Fraternity's Roman parish, and reflected the universality of the Church.

The Transalpine Redemptorists are based in a monastery on an island in the north of Scotland and also have a monastery in New Zealand. Fr. Magdala Maria is a New Zealander, and Fr. Yousef Marie is from Lebanon.


The Postmodernist said...

"On June 26, 2008, their petition was granted and they were no longer associated with the schismatic Society of St. Pius X."

Dear Father do you truly believe this statement viz. the SSPX is schismatic?

Transalpine Redemptorists said...

Dear Postmodernist

I think the article was worth posting because it was on the international level of the Catholic News Agency. Not everything was perfectly reported but that is pretty normal. For example what you quoted gave the wrong date; it should not have been June 26 but June 18.

Now you want to know my belief about the status of the SSPX because the article described the SSPX as "schismatic".

My first response is: You are focused on a detail not the substance of the article. The article was not about the SSPX. It is about the FSSP and FSSR ordinations.

Next, I should say that my belief about the status of the SSPX is worthless. All that matters is where they really are in relation to the Church and where the Church's judgment fixes them. Do you notice that many traditionalists do not want to follow a TRADITIONAL line when it comes to judging the status of the SSPX? Ask yourself how Pope Pius IX would judge a priest who had no recognised bishop or religious ordinary in the Catholic Church? That would be the traditional no fudging position.

Why do those traditionalists hold traditional judgments on non-Catholics and yet judge their own canonical position with a mercy and "understanding" they would not give to any others but themselves?

My private opinion, worthless as it is, is that bishops and priests who do not obey the call of the Church and return to hierarchical union with Her are schismatic; and that members of the faithful who go to SSPX chapels because they cannot attend a traditional Mass anywhere else may do so without necessarily falling into schism.

When I returned to Communion with the Holy See in 2008 I was surprised to note that I was absolved from schism. I was not subjectively aware of schism but I accept the Church's judgment well above my own.

"Schismatic" is a difficult word to apply to oneself but the application gives clarity and clarity gives the holy direction to take. I am not afraid to use the word if it helps shed some light. I sincerely hope every priest and bishop of the SSPX, led by kindly light seeks and finds his way to true union with the Holy See; a manly unity that would stand up to the scrutiny of Blessed Pope Pius IX, St Pius X and the canonical clarity of past years.

Anne B said...

This article says Fr Magdala Maria is a New Zealander. Sorry, I thought I read he was an Australian. And I somehow had the notion that Fr Yousef Marie was a Lebanese Australian! Wanting to claim them all!!!

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