The Northeastern Regional Conference was sponsored by ten chapters of UVA: UV Berkshires, Boston, Brooklyn, Bronx, Cape Cod, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Rochester, Syracuse, and Westchester. These ten chapters also bought His Excellency Bp. Rifan a new pontifical ring which was presented to him by Fr. Santos at vespers on Friday.

The conference weekend was a truly a blessed experience for all who attended. The speakers gave insightful and inspiring talks, and all of the liturgies were incredibly beautiful, including the pontifical High Mass, which was celebrated from the throne with the permission of Bishop Tobin of Providence. The weekend would not have been possible without the kind permission of Father Santos of Holy Name of Jesus Church, who opened his church and school for the events. A special "thank you" is extended with much affection to Allen Maynard, host of the conference and president of UV RI and also to his wife Wendy and her crew who did a wonderful job of providing food for the attendees.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Saturday Morning: Braga Rite Mass and Speakers

Low Mass at 9 am at Holy Name Church was according to the Rite of Braga - a Portuguese rite protected by Pope St. Pius V at the Council of Trent. The celebrant was Fr. Santos, who was ordained in Portugal.

There are a number of differences between the Rite of Braga and the TL Mass - including a different genuflection - but the language of the Rite is Latin. Fra Freddy served at the Mass... and His Excellency played the organ!

The Mass was followed by coffee and registration. The first speaker of the morning was Fr. Wilson.

Fr. Wilson spoke of his days in the seminary in the 1970s and 1980s ... and of the great hope that was in the air at the time, that the changes in the Church would lead to an abundance of conversions and vocations. Of course, these never came to be - and in fact the opposite was true and everything came crashing down. His talk was not just about the disasters of the past decades, though, but also about what it is to be a Catholic. He gave a quote from Madeline L'Engle, to the effect that "Christians should shine with such a light that others want, with all their hearts, to know its source."

Fra Freddy then spoke on the FIUV General Assembly meeting in Rome last October and about some of his plans as president of UVA. He hopes to increase US presence in FIUV, as UVA represents a very large number of Catholics devoted to the TL Mass when compared to other groups in the federation. He also intends to begin an FIUV newsletter and to reestablish contact with FIUV members who have not been heard from in a long while. Fra Freddy is of the opinion that some sort of Apostolic Administration or general indult will be arranged for the TL Mass in the near future, but explained some of the difficulties presented with either possible arrangement.

Wendy Maynard and her crew of talented sou-chefs gave a lovely lunch in the school for the attendees.

After lunch, Fr. Kocik gave a very interesting presentation on liturgical reform and the role of the 1962 Missal in the near future, since Pope Benedict XVI seems to favor a reform of the Novus Ordo rather than a universal return to the TL Mass. His talk led to a very spirited Q&A session afterwards, as he had raised many important issues that people wanted to discuss.

The MC of the afternoon was Allen Maynard, who was the host of the conference, and he did an excellent job of keeping everyone rolling in the aisles.

Paulo Frade and family/friends - originally from Brazil and living in Medford, MA - came to the conference and met Bp. Rifan.


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