Italian bishop forbids Latin Mass despite motu proprio

Naples, Sep. 17, 2007 ( - Bishop Raffaele Nogaro of Caserta, Italy forbade the celebrate of the celebration of the traditional Latin Mass on Sunday, September 15, despite the permission granted by Pope Benedict XVI for all priests to use the older liturgical form.

The Italian daily Il Messagero reports that Bishop Nogaro ordered Msgr. Giovanni Battista Gionta to cancel plans for a Mass using the 1962 Roman Missal at the Shrine of St. Anne. Msgr. Gionta, who had scheduled the Mass at the request of local Catholics, posted a note at the shrine to announce that he was changing plans. “I obey the bishop,” he explained.

Il Messagero said that Bishop Nogaro ordered the cancellation of the Mass “so as not to set a precedent.” The bishop said that he was taking action to help his people pray properly, since** “to mumble in Latin serves no purpose.”**

I realize that The Holy Father would rather not go head-to-head when it comes to problems like this… but Your Holiness, now is the time for swift, decisive and concrete action. Anything less on your part will only embolden those who desire to defy not only you, but centuries upon centuries of Catholic tradition.

I will allow this discussion only if no denigrating remarks are made about the bishop or judgments are made as to his motivation(s). Thank you all.

I was wondering about this. Not this Bishop in particular, but if a Bishop could still forbid the saying of the TLM in his diocese even with the Motu Propio? It sounds as though he can? I ask b/c my Bishop (at least prior to 9-14) does not allow the TLM in our diocese and wondered if this would force him to reverse that policy?

Get our rosaries out for those poor people that are oppressed.

Mmm-kay - so how about simply pointing out that this decree is in direct disobedience to the pope’s will as stated in Summorum Pontificum? Will you allow this?

That priest might be obeying his bishop, but the bishop is not obeying the Pope…

I assume this will be dealt with very quickly by the Ecclesia Dei commission. They will have their hands full with the number of bishops who are interfering with the proper implementation of the MP. However I think this bishop will be one of the first to be corrected as his comments are especially problematic.

While it would be nice, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for the Commission to act swiftly and decisively as that’s not usually the way things are done.

I believe the priest did the right thing when he chose to be obedient to the bishop.

I await the follow-up to this story.

I am sorry but these people are not being oppressed.

I do disagree with what the bishop is doing but he is in no way oppressing anyone.

Hmm does this not sound familiar, when the 2nd Vatican Council ratified the use of the venacular and the Pope created the Novus Ordo everyone took that as a command that the Traditional Mass was suddenly outlawed. If my Bishop were to do something like this I think I would have real problem in obeying him in anything at all simply because he is being disobedient to Vicar of Christ the Bishop of Rome. I do not understand how these Bishops get away some of the stuff they do, especially here in the US. This is so very sad it is time that the Holy Father nip this one in the bud. I am beginning to wonder is the Holy Roman Church heading toward the same end as the English Church what next are some of these Bishops going to start ordaining women and public practicing homosexuals. This has me very sad for and Italian Bishop to say the mumbling in the Latin does nothing. Obviously he is not in touch with his flock.:frowning:

I have to admit that Bishop Raffaele Nogaro has been a controversial figure in Italy. However, the CWNews report is very minimal and to me it appears to be biased to damage the Bishop image by partially quoting only a subset of his remarks.:frowning:

From the Italian web sites I read that the Bishop stated that the Don Giovanni Battista Gionti did not inform (as mandated) the Bishop of the plan of celebrating such a Mass. That was the formal reason not to allow that Mass.:rolleyes:

Another quote assigned to the Bishop was referring to the fact that people need more catechesis than choreography. To me this is a clear indicator of the Bishop’s way of thinking. I think that he was wrong in behaving that way; but again, we have free will and we are accountable for our decisions.

I still have the impression the catechesis (education) is not considered as important as form by the Italian culture. This is the country where everybody is a Catholic ready to fight the Muslim invader when it comes to allow the use of the veil for young Islamic women, but not nobody goes to Mass on Sunday.:mad:

Referring to the highlighted text, a quick read of the MP show that permission, or even notification, is not required. That is, in fact, the entire purpose of the MP.

I don’t find it amusing when Bishop’s use the proper training card for the Old Rite and forget the same for the New Rite.

I’m trying to be civil as possible but is difficult at times when you live in Lost Angeles…


The pope’s motu proprio makes it clear that the priest is not in any way obliged to inform the bishop of his plans to celebrate the EF.

I do not disagree. My understanding is the Bishop considers it a mandate. Maybe that it is not specific to the EF, but to the plan of celebrating any non scheduled Mass. I do not know, and I still think that even if true it is still ad hoc justification to cover the real reason.

This brings up an interesting dilemna…

Priests mustg be obedient to their bishops, but what if the bishop is not submitting to the will of the Holy Father?

A little over the top. But I saw the mods post and re-worded it, wrong choice I reckon. IMHO I do think it’s an oppression when people are forced to the NO.

Wouldn’t the Holy Father’s will supersede the bishop, so the Priest would follow the greater order?

I tend to agree that it would supercede…

BUT (you saw that one coming, right?) I don’t advocate disobedience, I advocate appeal and a ruling. Otherwise we set up the precedent of ANYONE claiming some sort of “legitimate disobedience” so long as they can point to a Vatican document (even if they do so by misinterpreting it.

So even thought it is pretty obvious what the MP said, meant, and how this contravenes the MPs directives it is far better, safer, and smarter to have ROME be the one to point that out on appeal.

So, if this is really going down in this way over there, the faithful should contact the Vatican through a canon lawyer and go from there.

In the mean time, the bishop’s directive (and it is not clear from this article if he is trying to block the TLM always and everywhere, or just in this place at this time) in this matter does not preclue the celebration of the EM in other settings.

Monsignor might do well to quietly celebrate the EM without announcemet - as is his total right - at another venue at another time.

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