Saturday, July 26, 2008

“… I’m back in Rome but in St. Jerome!”

We take pleasure in sharing with you the letter of Mariela Corpus-Torres of Ayala Alabang Village to Fr. Grato Germanetto, CRS.


July 13, 2008

Dear Rev. Fr. Grato,

Praise the return of the Latin Mass!

An answered prayer! Thanks for making it a regular 9:30AM Mass that my kids and I look forward to “con todo gusto.” We see to it that we’re inside the church immediately after the 8:30AM Filipino Mass to be sure of our front pew for a perfect view.

I dug out our “Sunday Best” out of the baul [chest] and personally hand washed all of them for this special occasion. The velo [veil] is no more to be found. I’ll have to buy a new one or ask from my mother’s friends and relatives if they still have it.

It reminds me of my childhood—Sundays during the 1960s-1970s when I attended Mass at the Manila Cathedral or at Paco Church. It also reminded me of my stay in Rome from 1975-1978 when my late father was assigned at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO of UN), a visit to Amsterdam, and a catholic cathedral in downtown San Francisco, California, USA in 1978.

It’s so solemn…heavenly… soul searching…perfect peace…tranquil…and awesome…words cannot fully describe. It makes me think I’m back in Rome but in St. Jerome! And you’re Italian…ahh muy perfecto!! Rome is my second home! My soul lives in old Rome—that’s why I love the Traditional Latin Mass.

As compared to the regular English/Tagalog Masses, I don’t feel holy or concentrated. However, I feel more concentrated while attending your Latin Masses.

I’m inviting other friends from other cities to experience the Traditional Latin Mass in our parish. The past two Christmas Eve Latin Masses (in Novus Ordo) started it all! We welcome back the return of the Roman Catholic Traditional Mass; more so, that your church is among the first in the Philippines to do so in 2008!

Please don’t ever stop. “Once you pop you’ll always pop and hop back to old Rome in St. Jerome!”

God bless!


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Inaugural Traditional Latin Mass at St. Jerome Emiliani

Pastor's Message:

P. Introibo ad altare Dei.

I will go in unto the altar of God.

S. Ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam.

To God, the joy of my youth.

These past two Sundays (June 29 and July 6), these words in Latin resounded in our church at 9:30 am, accompanied by the beautiful and solemn Gregorian chant. They are the beginning of the Holy Mass celebrated in the Traditional Latin Rite as mandated in the 1962 Missale Romanum reformed by Pope John XXIII.

The Traditional Latin Mass was never abolished nor forbidden - just put aside to give way to the New Ordo of the Mass celebrated in Vernacular Languages and accompanied by contemporary music.

Reactions to this New Ordo have been varied in many parts of the world. Some of them with painful consequences, like the schism of the Pius X group. But it must be said very clearly that the real reason for their separation from the communion of the Roman Catholic Church has never been the new Liturgy in itself but their rejection of the whole of the Vatican II Council.

Now, exactly one year ago, the Holy FAther, Benedict XVI, promulgated the Motu Propio "Summorum Pontificum" which exhorts Bishops and Priests to heed the requests of the faithful who long for the Traditional Latin Mass.

That is why I accepted the invitation of a group of faithful from different parishes of the Diocese of Parañaque and practiced the old rite to become ready for it, while they provided me and the church with the necessary books and other paraphernalia: vestments for the celebrant and altar servers, beautiful candelabra for the altar, processional cross and torches, censer and bucket for holy water. Finally on Sunday, June 29, 2008, Solemnity of the Saints Peter and Paul, we did it.

It was a beautiful and solemn celebration, according to the many feedbacks we received after the mass. The same happened last Sunday and I hope, will happen every Sunday.

I felt so much united with the Church of today and of centuries past. The use of the language and the chant which have been used for centuries all over the world was simply thrilling. Those who did not understand Latin felt even more the solemnity and the mystery of the celebration. Thousands and thousands of saints and plain people have repeated these same words and felt so much united with God.

You are invited to participate on Sundays at 9:30 am and experience the marvelous feeling of praying with the rite our parents (for us already in age) and grandparents used during their lifetime. A useful booklet is provided to help you follow the celebration.

God bless you all and protect you from all danger of the body and soul.

Rev. Fr. Grato Germanetto, CRS
Parish Priest
St. Jerome Emiliani and St. Susanna Parish