Una Voce America Rejoices Over New Pope - Pope Benedict XVI Long-time Supporter of the Traditional Latin Mass

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Pope John Paul II called for world-wide access to the traditional Latin Mass for all Catholics. Una Voce is an organization dedicated to carrying out this papal request and looks forward to working with the new Pope. As Cardinal Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI showed great support for the traditional Latin Mass and Una Voce.

Throughout the world, you can hear the roar of approval from millions of Catholics overjoyed and grateful to hear that the new Pope is committed to Tradition. Tradition is the body of beliefs, writings, devotions, rituals, gestures – all things Roman Catholic – that has been passed down from generation to generation from the time of the Apostles until now. Amongst those cheering most loudly for Holy Father Benedictus XVI is Una Voce America.

One of the cornerstones of Tradition in the Church is the Mass – passed down and kept intact in its essentials from its first celebration by Christ until the present time. An increasing number of Catholics have become devoted to the traditional Latin Mass, universally celebrated by the western Church prior to the 1960’s because it is so richly expresses the doctrinal beliefs of the Church. In 1988, His Holiness Pope John Paul II confirmed that the traditional Latin Mass is permitted anywhere with the approval of the local bishop. Since then, over half the dioceses of the United States have established weekly Latin Masses – and some have whole parishes devoted to the traditional Mass. Pope John Paul II also founded religious orders devoted to the 1962 Missal and these orders have an abundance of vocations.

As Cardinal Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI has worked to promote a “wide and generous application” of the traditional Latin Mass. At a lecture given in Rome in 1998 to an audience of some 3000 Catholics, Pope Benedict noted that the many Latin Mass communities which have emerged since 1988 “have given the Church a great number of priestly and religious vocations … through them, many of the faithful have been confirmed in the joy of being able to live the liturgy, and confirmed in their love for the Church, or perhaps they have rediscovered both.” The new Holy Father has also occasionally celebrated the traditional Latin Masses including a pontifical High Mass on Easter Sunday in 1990 and at the International Seminary of St. Peter, the seminary of a religious order devoted entirely to the the traditional Latin Mass. He has been an outspoken supporter of the work of Una Voce, an international organization devoted to promoting the traditional Mass saying “the International Una Voce Federation has played an important role in supporting the use of the 1962 edition of the Roman Missal in obedience to the directives of the Holy See. For this valuable service I express my gratitude to the members of the Federation and extend my blessing."

Catholics devoted to the 1962 Missal and the rich tradition of the Latin Mass have good cause to say Deo Gratias with the election of Cardinal Ratzinger as Pope Benedict XVI.

Una Voce America is part of an international body of Catholics promoting the celebration of the Mass and the sacraments in Latin, according to the liturgical books in effect in 1962. It draws its inspiration from Pope John Paul II's 1988 apostolic letter "Ecclesia Dei," in which he urged a wide and generous access to the traditional Latin Mass throughout the world for all Catholics.

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Indira Sweeny

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