Catholic Group Holds Conference To Discuss Developments Under Pope Benedict XVI: Una Voce America Chapters and Members Will Meet This November in Providence

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This November, Una Voce America will host a conference in Providence, R.I. to discuss issues related to the traditional Latin Mass under the papacy of Benedict XVI. Speakers will include Bp. Fernando Rifan of Campos, Brazil. The conference is open to all.

The papacy of Benedict XVI has serious implications for those Catholics concerned about the state of the liturgy in the Church today. Una Voce America has organized a conference for this November in Providence, R.I. to discuss more fully the significance of recent developments in the Church: Tradition Iin the 21st Century: The Mission Of Una Voce In The Papacy Of Benedict XVI. The guest of honor for this weekend will be Bishop Fernando Rifan of Campos, Brazil, and the list of speakers includes Father Joseph Wilson (contributor to; Father THOMAS KOCIK (Fall River, MA Diocese and well-known Catholic writer); and Fra Fredrik Crichton-Stuart (newly-elected President FIUV). The conference will start Friday, Nov. 18 with workshops and presentations for UVA chapter leaders; Saturday, Nov. 19th is open to all and will include a line-up of lectures and lunch, followed by a dinner and presentation by Bishop Rifan; Sunday, Nov. 20th concludes the weekend with a pontifical High Mass and Communion breakfast with speaker.

An increasing number of Catholics have become devoted to the traditional Latin Mass (the liturgy universally celebrated by the western Church prior to the 1960’s) because of its rich tradition, dating back to 500 AD, and its clear presentation of Catholic doctrinal beliefs in its prayers and gestures. In 1988, His Holiness Pope John Paul II confirmed that the traditional Latin Mass is permitted throughout the Church, 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. Una Voce is an international organization devoted to the promotion and support of the traditional Latin Mass in accordance with the wishes of the Holy Father, and in the United States Una Voce has some 70 chapters working on the local level to increase awareness of and access to this rite of the Catholic liturgy.

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 Mass. He has been an outspoken supporter of the work of Una Voce, 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."

In addition to the roster of speakers, the conference weekend will include an incredible array of devotions and liturgies: pontifical vespers, Holy Hour, confessions, and a pontifical High Mass offered by Bp. Rifan. Mass on Saturday morning will be celebrated according to the Rite of Braga, one of the liturgical forms protected under the Council of Trent in the 16th century. The conference is open to all. Accommodations are available at a conference rate at the Providence Marriott. Please visit for more information and online registration.

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Indira Sweeny

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