Rorate Caeli

FSSP - Una Voce announcement

UVA Launches Priest Training Workshops

Joint Effort with FSSP to Train Priests to Celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass

PRESS RELEASEFor Immediate Distribution - March 11, 2007 Publicity flyer (PDF)

Una Voce America is pleased to announce a collaborative program with the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP) designed to provide training for any priest interested in learning how to celebrate the traditional Latin Mass.
"This program may be the most important effort we've undertaken," said UVA director Jason King recently. "We're grateful to the Fraternity for its generous support of this project."

Training will take place in June 2007 at Our Lady of Guadalupe seminary in Denton, Nebraska, which is located in the diocese of Lincoln. The workshop will last for one week and will be repeated three times (the first, second and fourth weeks of June). Each session will begin on a Monday at noon and end Friday at noon of that week. A priest need only attend one of the three sessions, as the same material will be covered in each one.
The FSSP will be responsible for curriculum and instruction, while UVA will assume primary responsibility for funding and promoting the program.
Over a year in the making
UVA's board of directors began actively discussing the concept of priest training in early 2006, King said. Preparations accelerated last fall amid speculation that Pope Benedict XVI was planning to grant greater freedom for celebration of the Mass according to the 1962 Roman Missal.
"We felt this presented a historic opportunity for the nation's largest lay organization supporting the traditional Latin Mass -- Una Voce America -- to collaborate with a clerical religious institute whose priests actually use the 1962 Missal -- the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter," King stated.
He explained that most if not all American seminarians study only the modern liturgy that became normative following the Second Vatican Council. This has left a gap in knowledge of preconciliar liturgy that the priest training program will begin to address.
According to King, both Una Voce and the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter view the faithful's devotion to the Latin liturgical tradition as a "unique charism in support of the new evangelization championed by Pope John Paul II -- a charism that is ever ancient, yet ever new."
Week-long intensive training at Nebraska seminary
The Rev. Calvin Goodwin, FSSP, will be the Fraternity's contact point for interested clergy. He explained that the seminary has prepared a detailed curriculum (with books and an instructional DVD/CD) and has designated priests and deacons to teach and assist.
According to Fr. Goodwin, the workshops will cover not only the rubrics but also the liturgical principles underlying the rubrics.
"Priests will learn not only how far to raise their hands and how to pronounce the Latin, for example, but how the various gestures and prayers fit into the liturgical prayer of the Church, and reflect the Faith itself," Fr. Goodwin said.
"No prior experience with the traditional Mass is needed, and the course is open to all priests regardless of their level of Latin proficiency," he emphasized. "In fact, our instructors are eager to work even with those priests who have no previous Latin training at all."
Fr. Goodwin added that the curriculum, although very intensive, was designed specifically to accommodate today's busy clergy.
"It's often difficult for priests to learn these things from a video or book in their spare time -- they're pulled in a thousand different directions in their parishes," Fr. Goodwin explained. "Here at the seminary, without distractions, they will be able to ask questions and get the answers and encouragement they need," he added.
UVA to make financial aid available
Cost for the program will depend on the number of participants, but is estimated at $300 per priest. This sum will cover all course materials, which the priest may keep, as well as room and board for the week of the priest's stay. Una Voce America has offered to help any priest who needs financial assistance.
"Una Voce America is committed to raising sufficient funds to enable every interested priest to receive instruction on the proper celebration of the traditional Latin Mass," King said.
Una Voce America and the Priestly Fraternity expect to offer the PTP sessions on a periodic basis in the future. They also will establish a waiting list for priests who are unable to attend one of the June 2007 sessions or who cannot be accommodated by the limited space available in the initial sessions.
UVA is calling on its chapters, affiliates, and individual members to support this effort with prayers and financial contributions. Those who wish to support this program financially can send donations to Una Voce-Syracuse, PO Box 993, Oswego NY 13126. Checks should be designated for "priest training."
Program will support Vatican initiative
Although the priest training program was inspired in part by numerous reports that Pope Benedict XVI intends to free the traditional Latin Mass from the restrictions that now prevent its widespread celebration, UVA doesn't want to "presume too much on his decision," commented R. Michael Dunnigan, chairman of the organization.
Nonetheless, he added, "The Holy Father has been a courageous and eloquent defender of the traditional Mass, and if his will is to grant wider access to it, then we certainly want to do our part to promote the conditions that will help to achieve this goal."
Some bishops and other critics have opposed freedom for the traditional Mass, expressing concern that priests lacking adequate training may celebrate the Mass improperly. Dunnigan believes that these fears are misplaced.
"In addition to being sacramental ministers, priests are skilled professionals who take pride in their work," he said. "As a result, very few would be inclined to celebrate this Mass in public before they are fully prepared to do so."
In any event, Dunnigan pointed out that the priest training program sponsored by UVA and the FSSP is a cause that both proponents and critics of the traditional Mass can support.
"To the extent that the critics argue in favor of proper training, the traditionalist community fully supports this goal," Dunnigan said. "In fact, the very mission of the priest training program is to ensure that every priest who wishes to celebrate this Mass will receive the instruction that he needs to do so properly and reverently."
To receive more information or to make a reservation, interested priests should contact Fr. Goodwin at (402) 797-7700 or email: or write to: Attn: Mass Workshops, O.L.G. Seminary, P.O. Box 147, Denton, NE. 68339.
Priests in need of aid may inquire in confidence to UVA, c/o Mr. Jason King, PO Box 1146, Bellevue, WA 98009-1146.


  1. This is indeed an excellent initiative. I had a pleasant surprise the other day, when I mentioned it to a priest friend of mine who has recently begun celebrating the traditional Mass, only to be told that he had already registered!

    I think it will be very valuable for priests who have had no systematic formation with the traditional rites, and have been studying alone or with more experienced friends. Complete immersion for a few days without distractions, and with opportunities to see the liturgy well celebrated at the same time, should be very helpful.

    Some practical instruction on the chant would also be very useful, as most young priests have almost no knowledge of Gregorian, it seems.

  2. It is also an important indicator of future liklihood of need for priests who are informed enough to make the switch to the Traditional mass, either part time or...shall we say, more often :-) I don't think they would be bothering without some kind of mandate, known or unknown.

  3. Anonymous8:55 PM

    Wonderful news!
    This program will completely dispel the predicted reaction from bishops who might otherwise say (in reaction to a motu giving full authorization to all priests, everywhere to offer the TLM), "That is all well and good but none of our priests know how to say the old Mass since it hasn't taught in xx years..." This joint program between the UVA and FSSP will provide a welcome opportunity for diocesan priests to learn the Missal of 1962 in an atmosphere that is conducive to their understanding and education.

  4. Anonymous9:07 PM

    Any chance that this is a press release for March 21st and not March 11 as stated in the release?

  5. Anonymous9:18 PM

    I reserved my spot Monday! Oh Boy I have been waiting for something like this! My self and another priest from Memphis are going, I can't tell you how much I am looking forward to this.

  6. Anonymous9:34 PM

    My earlier comments regarding the lack of a robust theology of sacrifice in Sacramentum Caritatis are now perhaps moot. If the Pope will not teach, let the Mass of the Ages do the teaching!

  7. Anonymous10:08 PM

    hebdomadary is correct. This action isn't an accident.

    Father John, good to see you are going.

  8. The flyer should have included a condemnation of the Novus Ordo.

  9. Anonymous11:53 PM

    No, it shouldn't. The training session is not about bashing the N.O. The Fraternity is more concerned about promoting the Old Mass than going around worrying about demonizing the N.O.

  10. What a really wonderful picture.

  11. Anonymous12:47 AM

    God bless all of the Novus Ordo priests who are going, and in defense of the good brother, I can understand his contempt for the Novus Ordo as it has brought havoc and destruction upon the faithful

    Let us pray for a restoration

  12. Anonymous1:11 AM

    Last week I personally emailed nearly 50 priests in the diocese of Lafayette in Indiana this information. I mailed it to the liturgical director, or whatever they are called, for the diocese, too. Haven't gotten any replies, unfortunately.

  13. Anonymous1:19 AM

    The flyer should have included a condemnation of the Novus Ordo.

    Winning hearts and minds I see.

  14. Anonymous11:07 AM

    Wouldn't be a bad thing for the Fraternity to get some of their own priests to tighten up on proper celebration of the Mass too. On many occasions I've been distracted by incorrect usage. And I don't mean that they're leaving in the last confiteor or whatever, rather they are including horrid novus ordoisms. The Mass is not the priest's plaything. Leave us laity alone!

  15. Our current priest is a re-tread, he was a NO priest and went to Denton, Nebraska to learn the TLM Mass. He is a fantastic priest and we all love him dearly!
    The Church would encounter a true springtime if there were more priests like him.

  16. What type of thing are you referring to, Benedict, and what part of the world are you in?

    Kat, you're quite right. In fact, there are a number of such priests around. Where I live, the traditional Mass is celebrated entirely by clergy assigned by the diocese, all of whom are very well disposed, and pleased to have the traditional Mass as part of their apostolate. It is part of the Fraternity's gift to the Church, to be able to help such priests to spread tradition even further.

  17. I said condemn the Novus Ordo, not the priests that celebrate it.

    The question needs to be asked then, why celebrate the Traditional Mass? What is wrong with the Novus Ordo?

  18. Anonymous5:57 PM

    The flyer should have included a condemnation of the Novus Ordo.

    No, it shouldn't. Think of the saying about honey and vinegar again.

  19. Br. Anthony- you seem less than confident that if the TLM and the NO are set side by side, the excellence and superiority of the TLM will be noticeable to all.

    I can assure you that Bishop Fellay does not share your anxiety.

  20. Anonymous6:52 PM

    'The question needs to be asked then, why celebrate the Traditional Mass? What is wrong with the Novus Ordo?'

    That should be evident to a Novus Ordo priest upon completing his training in the Traditional Latin Mass. It will revolutionize his entire outlook.

  21. Is there also any effort under way to place all of this instruction onto DVD/VHS/Podcast/Web Stream? I am sure for every priest that is able to afford the time and expense of travel, there are many more that cannot.

    There also may be N.O. priests that want to learn the Tridentine more discretely. They may want to perfect the rubrics before they bring the matter up with their Bishop/Pastor/Congregations.

    And for that matter, there should also be an instructional DVD made specifically for the congregation. I am 36 year old neophyte traditionalist who has been attending an FSSP Parish for the last couple years. Even my learning process was difficult. Can you imagine how difficult this is going to be on a typical N.O. Congregation if their priest suddenly prays the Tridentine Mass?

  22. Some priests may need to become steeped in the traditional Mass before they can even comprehend why some errors are errors.