Feeling guilt from attending the Ordinary Form

Hello, I have a friend who has started going to Extraordinary Form Masses. These Latin Masses are quite beautiful and I appreciate their reverence, but I don’t feel as comfortable as I was raised in the Ordinary Form. Typically it’s easier for me to worship God more fully in my native tongue, to understand how to best enter into worship. My pastor has very reverent, traditional Ordinary Masses in an old Gothic church: luckily no liturgical abuses anywhere.

My friend is pressuring me to switch to Latin Masses as they work as a “math equation”: more prayers = more reverence to God. “It is objectivity more reverent than NO, no discussion. It is impossible for NO Masses to be as reverent as the Latin Mass, etc.” He attacks my uncomfortableness as a sign of weakness and says we should be willing to be uncomfortable for holiness. I agree with him and recognize suffering as essential for our spiritual journey; but my parish is my home.

I’m feeling increasingly guilty for attending the Ordinary Form as it is less reverent than the Extraordinary Form. I have struggled with debunking sedevacantism in the past, as that crowd has unfortunately poisoned my attraction to the Extraordinary Form. My friend is not a sede, but he is quite traditional (but there’s nothing wrong with that). I am not opposed to the Latin Mass, but I also see reverence and validity in the Ordinary Form. What do you think? Is my friend right? Ought I be willing to attend a different form of Mass to better worship God, and leave my current parish?

Your friend is very wrong to attack you for attending valid masses. And you must know that his “more prayers=more reverence” idea is nonsense.

A real friend wouldn’t be pressuring you like this. Keep that in mind.


This. He is literally bullying you. You need to step up for yourself and your sincere worshjp of God.
Guilt tripping is very ugly and shouldn’t be used between friends imho.


I would say he hasn’t been my friend for sometime. He’s very angry at the state of the Church and blames the bishops and priests for not doing enough for the sex abuse. He was my partner for Exodus 90 (90 day fasting exercise) and we grew apart as he (verbally) attacked my pastor and has strong opinions about everything. Please pray for him.


I would ask how could I counter his argument that the EF is superior in every way to the OF? I agree that the OF can be abused, but of course it’s a valid Form of Mass.

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That is ridiculous. If you can better worship God in an OF church go to that church. The EF is nice but is in no way better. I think it is not as good personally. People can give more proper and right worship in their native tongues in my opinion. Latin was the old vernacular, english is the vernacular now in America. If we were going to have a “best” or “most holy” language for mass other than vernacular it would be one of the languages the bible was written in (biblical Hebrew or Koine Greek, maybe Aramaic which Jesus is thought to have spoken as it was the common language during his time) not latin, even if the early church used latin as it was the learned vernacular at the time.


Catholic Mass is Catholic Mass.
Your friend means well, but he’s wrong.

Be at peace


Your friend is not being a friend. It seems to me your friend is clearly mistaken. Attending the Extraordinary Form has not made your friend a better person. Instead your friend is sinning by bullying you.

The Church clearly states that the Ordinary Form of the Mass celebrated in vernacular languages is perfectly valid.

Your faith is in your heart and not in the form of the Mass you attend. God knows this and sees what is in your heart.

I think you have enough information here in the various responses to be able to inform your friend that their behaviour is not that of a friend and is entirely unaceptable.


If anything, your friend is the one who is at odds with the Magisterium and its 2,000 years of consistent theology.


I don’t think you can, really. For you to do so, he would have to be open to hearing other people’s opinions, and it doesn’t sound like he is. Not even the Church’s.


Many times, when someone “discovers” something religious, they initially feel they need to “convert” everyone else, but after a time, the “fire” dies down. So, perhaps avoid this person for a while and see if the “fire” dies down, especially if you feel you are close to snapping and pointing out in anger that he/she is the disobedient heretic/dissenter.


This is such a private and personal choice. That you seem to be so concerned with your friend’s opinion on the matter, could be signaling a problem you have with yourself. Make up your own mind, and go with that. Don’t be so influenced by friends over issues that don’t pertain to them.


I agree. I think when he is this upset and angry, the best thing to do is to pray for your friend.

There can be abuses to either Mass, OF or EF. Reverence is not measured by how many prayers are said or how long the Mass is or what language it is said in.
You can rush through 5 prayers, or pray one prayer wholeheartedly. You can say a prayer in Latin without thought, or pray in your native tongue with your whole heart. And vice versa.
The Church does not teach that one form of the Mass is better and makes you a better Catholic than the other. Jesus is present at both, and at both we are given the opportunity to praise, worship and be with him.


Your friend must give you some space.


The Church disagrees with your sentiments here.

Your friend is misguided. You know the truth as you have cleary put it in the quote above.

There is a reason the scriptures say to guard your hearing. His overstated opinions are having a negative effect on you. Your guilt is misplaced. Be at peace.


no, your friend is not right, personally preferring a form of mass is fine. saying the of is irrevent or less holy is going too far. On the flip side, saying that the ef is useless or archaic is also wrong.

attend whichever parish you wish, typically, people like your friend will not listen to whatever you say, I’ve known many such people, just pray for him to find peace


Do not feel guilty! Do not! There is no guilt. Your friend should respect you more than he does. Is his ego flaring? At the risk of incurring condemnation, I will state that there is a reactionary/nostalgic movement in Catholicism that seeks all that is pre-Vatican II. They assign an unwarranted and unrealistic purity to it. They are blissfully unaware of EF abuses which lead to the OF! You mention those reasons!

The two forms are equally valid, having been declared so by the Church. Rome has spoken and the matter is settled.

Reverence is not in the externals. It is in the human heart. Politely request that he respect your choice.


Not a Latin Catholic here but I think you might benefit from my Eastern perspective. I’ve had quite a few encounters online with people like your friend who’ve claimed that Traditional Latin Masses are better or more reverent than Eastern Masses, OF, so on…

The best way to deal with them is to direct them to the teaching of the Church, which states that both forms of the Latin mass are valid and acceptable. If they persist in their folly, point out to them that it is traditional for Christians calling themselves “Catholic” to be obedient to Rome, the See of Peter. If your friend is still unconvinced, suggest to him whether he might want to rethink the traditional Catholic label. Traditional Catholics of all Rites should not disagree with Rome. That is how Catholicism “traditionally” works.

I’ve found that with some people, this tended to do the trick (provided they were open to listening to reason). I can only pray for the others. Disobedience to the Church is a heaven deal-breaker.


I respectfully suggest that what you are feeling is not guilt, but rather grief and dismay over your inability to have a harmonious relationship with this person who you want to think of as a friend. He seems like he is some kind of Catholic “fundamentalist.”

As others have suggested, you might need to give him some time and a lot of space. But continue to pray for him. And be gentle with yourself too.

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