Thursday, September 13, 2018

FSSP in Reading given a 'personal parish'

Easter Sunday with the FSSP in 2014, in St William of York, Reading
Bishop Philip Egan of Portsmouth has given the apostolate of the Fratenity of St Peter in Reading an elevated legal status, making them a 'personal parish'.
This is a very unusual legal status, but one well suited to the reality of the traditional priestly institutes.

It won't make any immediate practical difference to the work of the Fraternity, but it is a very pleasing vote of confidence by the bishop, and an example for others to follow if they wish.

Bishop Crispian Hollis gave their residence in Reading canonical status in 2010, not long before his retirement.

Full story in the Catholic Herald.

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  1. Personally I prefer the status of Shrine which has been used in St Mary's, The Dome, S Walburges & English Martyrs up here in the North West. I think it is less exclusive and accepts the reality that often these specialist Latin Mass Churches will have occasional visitors who travel there and aren't able to get every Sunday. As I said in an article in 'Mass of Ages' a couple of years ago 'A Parish exists for the benefit of its parishioners whilst a Shrine exists for the benefit of everyone who visits it. Personal parishes are appropriate for specialist Rites like the Syro Malabars but we are all (supposedly) part of one Latin Rite whether in the Ordinary or Extraordinary Form

    The Reading situation is however rather unique since they have been sharing a Church with a 'normal' Parish and so a personal Parish status is appropriate until they get a Church of their own. Hopefully the trend will increase and other Dioceses will give Churches to the FSSP & ICKSP

  2. As I understand it - it has been a long time since my canon law classes - a "shrine" is a designation for a *place*, not a community as such; and in fact that it is theoretically possible for a personal parish/quasi parish or oratory, say, to co-exist with a shrine, since the parish or oratory designation delineates the status of a particular community which might be resident at the shrine, without affecting the shrine's canonical status.

    Since the question of the Institute of Christ the King's status at the Home of Dome and St Walburge's has come up, perhaps Dr Shaw can clarify something on this. Over here in the U.S., the Institute has worked hard, almost always with success, in obtaining an oratory status for its apostolates. Is this also the case at the Home of Dome and St Walburge's? Exactly what canonical status - and protection - do they have at either place?

    All this aside, I might make a more specific clarification in regards to Neil's comment: With or without the personal parish status, neither the FSSP or the ICRSS will ever celebrate anything but the Traditional Latin Mass (EF). Even if the bishop designated the St. John Fisher *church* as a Shrine, this fact would not change. In this respect, they will always be inherently "exclusive" in some way.

  3. Athelstane: Here the ICKSP Churches are all designated as 'Shrines' with the ICKSP given their supervision which of course means that all the services are in the Extraordinary Form since that is how the ICKSP offer the sacraments. The Churches are all Diocesan Churches I'm not privy to the exact arrangements that the Institute have with the 2 Dioceses but they seem happy that their interests and independence are protected. The FSSP Church is also designated as a Shrine but is actually owned by the FSSP who purchased it from the Benedictines who previously owned it so to that extent the FSSP have greater control than the ICKSP but also greater responsibility

    From what I know about Oratory or Shrine status they both provide a Canonical model to allow a Church building to offer 'something different' in terms of worship where that is appropriate. Here in Britain the ICKSP Church of St Peter, St Paul and St Philomena in New Brighton (often called the 'Dome of Home') was the first Full Time Latin Mass Church established since V2 and was designated a Shrine to the Blessed Sacrament by Bishop Mark Davies. Since then the other ICKSP Churches have also been designated a s Shrines and that status seems to have worked well for them. Since they are not designated as Parishes I have never had to chose between my OF Parish and the Dome. I am a regular part of the Congregation of the Dome but I am still registered with my OF Parish

    I don't see a Latin Mass Church as 'exclusive' merely by that fact alone. We are all Catholics and I am delighted to see that the increase in the number and visibility of the Traditional Latin Mass is leading to a general awareness of Catholic tradition amongst all Parishes, Oratories and Shrines