March 20, 2010
Thank you Sean and everyone who helped you, for all of your hard work to bring this beautiful Mass to Holy Cross College in Worcester after so long a time period. May God bless you all for your efforts.
Worcester Telegram Article
After hearing much about the old rite that was at the spiritual heart of his grandparents’ generation, the College of the Holy Cross student visited the Santissima Trinita dei Pellegrini (the Most Holy Trinity of the Pilgrim Church), a 16th-century house of worship where the Mass is celebrated exclusively in Latin.
He said he immediately fell in love with the worship service — struck by its solemnity, its piousness, and its elaborate trappings.
“I felt like I was denied, for years, something that was very special,” said the 21-year-old Westchester, N.Y., resident. “It is such a beautiful liturgy.”
Mr. Connolly, who is studying theology and the classics at Holy Cross, said he was so impressed that he began to regularly attend the Latin Mass that is offered Sunday mornings at Immaculate Conception Church in Fitchburg.
And thinking that his fellow students might spiritually benefit from the experience, Mr. Connolly, with help from the chaplain’s office at Holy Cross, has worked to schedule a Mass on Mount St. James.
The service will be held at 5 p.m. today at St. Joseph’s Memorial Chapel, preceded at 4:30 p.m. with the recitation of the Rosary.
The Latin Mass will be the first to be celebrated at Holy Cross since 1995.
Raymond L. Delisle, a spokesman for the Diocese of Worcester, said he was not aware of any other Latin Masses being celebrated at the area’s Catholic colleges in years.
Pope Benedict XVI eased restrictions on the millennial-old rite in 2007.
The Latin Mass had been the standard Catholic liturgy until the sweeping reforms of the 1960s Vatican Council.
Traditionalists within the Catholic Church were pleased with Pope Benedict’s decision but the Latin Mass hasn’t been embraced by the general Catholic population.
Besides Immaculate Conception, Latin Masses within the diocese are only celebrated regularly at St. Paul Church in Warren.
“There is a small group that is very dedicated to the Latin Mass,” said Paul Covino, associate chaplain and director of liturgy at Holy Cross. “But it doesn’t seem to have caught on.”
Mr. Covino said the Mass in 1995 was celebrated at the request of curious students, who were unfamiliar with the rite. The Mass, at the time, had to be approved by the local bishop.
“We’re hoping the Mass will serve as an educational and spiritual tool,” Mr. Covino said.
He said there are no plans to regularly schedule the Latin Mass, also known as the Tridentine Mass, at Holy Cross because the Jesuit priests on College Hill are not trained in the rite.
Today’s Mass will be celebrated by the Rev. David Phillipson, who offers the service at Immaculate Conception in Fitchburg.
Mr. Connolly, a senior who hopes to attend seminary this fall and eventually become a priest for the Archdiocese of New York, said many who take part in the Masses in Fitchburg, including the choir and about 20 trained acolytes, will participate in today’s service.