Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Fr. Zuhlsdorf: An Open Letter to Most Rev. Michael Olson, Bishop of Fort Worth

By Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

(Fr. Z's Blog) I propose a possible way to diffuse some of the tension surrounding Fort Worth’s Bp. Olson and his banning of Mass celebrated according to the 1962 Missale Romanum at Fisher More College.

Years ago, when I worked at the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei“, we had an especially tense and even bitter round of correspondence with an American bishop who steadfastly denied to the faithful any use of the Traditional Latin Mass.  Hundreds of people signed petitions.  He wouldn’t budge. Finally, my boss, Card. Mayer told me that, at some point, we had to stop arguing and try to open hearts.  I round-filed the draft of a conclusive letter I had brought to him and wrote a new one. He signed it and I sent it.  A few weeks later we received news that, not only had His Excellency the Bishop granted regular celebrations of the TLM, he celebrated the first one himself.

It was a gesture of rare healing and true grace for many people.

I am reasonably sure that someone in Fort Worth is monitoring this blog for Bp. Olson.
Therefore, I ask:

Your Excellency,

Would you not go to celebrate a Traditional Latin Mass for the student body yourself?  If you object to some aspects of Fisher More College, could you not offer this Mass at the parish nearby, which Your Excellency mentioned in your letter to Mr. King, St. Mary of the Assumption?

This gesture would heal wounds that are opening up, allay fears, and give great solace to many people near and far, not the least the students of the College.  They are caught in the crossfire.

I humbly ask Your Excellency to consider this petition with an open, fatherly heart.

As a token of my best wishes, I promise during Lent a daily prayer, a Memorare, for you in the heavy mandate that has been entrusted to you as Bishop of Fort Worth.

Fr. John Zuhlsdorf


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