A few years ago our former Byzantine Ruthenian Catholic (BRC) priest had to retire due to age. He was replaced by a new BRC priest. A late vocation in his 40’s who had been ordained a couple of years before.
In talking directly to this man when he arrived, he said he had went to seminary on his own dime. He then joined a now defunct religious society which ordained him a deacon in the Latin Rite. He then could not locate a bishop who would accept him into their diocese. He turned to the East and after a difficult year or two in the eparchy the local bishop asked the Holy See to change his rite in preparation to ordain him to the priesthood.
The Holy See said (I saw a copy of the letter he carries in his wallet which he personally handed me) that he would not become Byzantine Rite but that he would be granted faculties in both the East and West. OK, fairly fascinating but it didn’t really concern me.
In the past three years this priest has performed very poorly as a pastor. He seems pre-occupied with the EF Mass (his only friend seems to be an elderly priest who celebrates the local EF Mass.) He caters to the ex-patriot Latin Rite fundamentalists in our parish. * Even more importantly he clearly shoulders an emotional challenge as well which I know nothing about.*
I was shocked to learn this morning at Divine Liturgy that he now also celebrates the EF Mass in a neighboring city when the other priest needs a replacement. This is causing great tension in our parish. Our Eastern bishop clearly knows. Is this commonly allowed?
I’ve just about had it. The mantra from the eparchy to long-time, influential members of the parish is “there is no one else” (to send to our parish.) Are things really this bad?