First Tridentine Mass

I attended my first Latin (Tridentine - low) mass today in Phoenix. It started at 1 pm in 105 degree weather, but was well attended today (200 or 300). I attempted to attend Phoenix’s first Tridentine mass a month or two ago, but my 3 year old was not cooperating very well and the huge crowd prevented entrance through the door.

I am new to the Catholic faith, but I must say today was quite the experience. We had a missal so I was able to follow along. I took the missal’s instruction to heart in that I attempted to actually “pray the mass.”

I had to work very hard to stay focused and following along, but the depth of this mass is simply incredible and well worth the effort. It certainly hammers home the sacrificial nature of what is occurring and changes the entire focus from self to heaven.

I understand why Older Catholics lament the loss. The new mass is beautiful, but it is much more like a Protestant service and its depth does not approach what I experienced today.

The downside is that if the average English speaking person is not really making a significant effort to focus on what is occurring in the Tridentine, it is easy to see how they would prefer the new mass.

Ones focus is the Holy Eucharist. The Mass in English or Latin does not change what is occurring. Rather, the Tridentine Mass is more reverent and in harmony with what’s occurring during Mass. It is easy then to see that those (many) who prefer the New Mass do not have a complete understanding of what’s really occurring.

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