Rorate Caeli

Pontifical High Mass for the Dead at the Faldstool

The Most Reverend Joseph Nathaniel Perry, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago, offered a Pontifical High Mass for the Dead at the Faldstool for the souls of deceased Catholic leaders of the pro-life movement on Friday, 25 January, after the March for Life in Washington, D.C.

The Mass was organized by Juventutem Michigan, under the leadership of Mr. Paul Schultz, Esq. Offered at Saint Mary, Mother of God church, the Mass attracted approximately 450 people (including several dozen who had to stand in the narthex and back of the nave), mostly Catholics in their 20s and 30s who were visiting Washington for the March.  Several priests from the Fraternity of Saint Peter, Institute of Christ the King and various dioceses served as ministers and sat in choro.  The parish schola of men, under the direction of guest conductor Wassim Sarweh, chanted the propers and ordinary of the Requiem Mass.  A choir of six men sang several polyphonic motets.

The following are some photos taken by Juventutem volunteers:

And, courtesy of parishioner Mr. Matthew Balan, two minutes of video and audio can be found here.

The same church hosted a Missa Cantata at 8 a.m., offered by the Reverend Father Gregory Pendergraft, F.S.S.P., in remembrance of, and for the repose of the soul of, Miss Nellie Gray, sponsored by the Paulus Institute.  (Father Pendergraft later served as MC for the pontifical Mass.)  Numerous Low Masses were also offered the morning of the March for Life, including by visiting priests of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate.  All of the Masses featured full pews, again mostly comprised of young adults.

More photos and details about the Pontifical High Mass for the Dead at the Faldstool may be viewed here.

If you are interested in learning about the distinct rubrics of this Mass, I recommend reading Chapters XVII and XVIII of Father Fortescue's "Ceremonies of the Roman Rite Described" here.


  1. Hello Ken,

    Thank you for posting these photos.

    I was also at the mass, and it was easily the most beautiful and moving TLM I have attended in the DC area since the 2010 pontifical mass at the Shrine Basilica.

  2. Thank you for the nice write-up, Ken, and for helping to sing the Mass!

    To those who had a chance to attend, please visit the facebook edition of the photo album, as well, and share the pictures with any who would be interested.

    As able, please feel free to tag yourself and your friends.

    Juventutem Michigan

  3. Where were the five busloads of young people from St. John Cantius and St. Peter in Volo? Was the church too small? Just wondering...

  4. Truth Seeker2:47 AM

    I am the first to admit I'm ignorant of some of the finer points of ceremonial in the Extraordinary Form.

    Why was the Assistant Priest (in the black cope to the Hierarch's right) not wearing a biretta? Should he not have done so, like the Deacon and Sub-deacon?

    Inquiring minds want to know. :-)

  5. Milwaukee Attendee3:41 AM

    Paul Schultz is my hero!

  6. Gianna Anne4:38 PM

    I was a chaperone with St. John Cantius. Brother Chad did a great job of organizing such a great number of us at the March.

    And yes, the church was too small for Cantius. My mother, sister, brother, and friend attended the mass and said even they had trouble finding a seat. (Which is great!)

  7. Truth Seeker5:48 PM

    BTW, what is the intrinsic difference between a parish liturgical committee for the Ordinary Form, and a group of young traditionalists organizing a Mass in the Extraordinary Form?

  8. Paul Schultz is the best

  9. Terth8:20 PM

    Truth Seeker: BTW, what is the intrinsic difference between a parish liturgical committee for the Ordinary Form, and a group of young traditionalists organizing a Mass in the Extraordinary Form?"

    That is a very interesting question, and I'd like to know the answer as well. No answering "one is a bunch of liberals or heretics," because the question asks re: the intrinsic difference.

  10. Dear Truth Seeker and Terth,

    Though I have a diversity of experiences which are relevant to the question, I am not able to identify any intrinsic differences between a parish liturgical committee for the Ordinary Form and a group of young traditionalists organizing a Mass in the Extraordinary Form.

    Can you identify any?

    In any event, if either of you ever find yourself in Ann Arbor, I'd be glad to share a bottle of wine and discuss the extrinsic differences which I have observed or of which I am aware.

    Just a vineyard worker, not a hero,
    ~Paul Schultz


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