Sunday November 17, 2019
8:22 am

Addition of new Latin Mass raises hopes for increased vitality for downtown Hammond parish

Latin Mass 1

Priests from the Institute of Christ the King, with Bishop Donald J. Hying and altar servers, are pictured at the consecration during the Mass celebrated in Latin as it was for centuries prior to the Second Vatican Council, at St. Joseph in downtown Hammond on Dec. 3. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

by MARLENE A. ZLOZA

Northwest Indiana Catholic

 

      HAMMOND – The Diocese of Gary is moving forward by going back, welcoming the Institute of Christ the King from Chicago to St. Joseph parish to celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, otherwise known as the Latin Mass.

      “This is an addition, not a subtraction,” stressed Bishop Donald J. Hying, whose formal invitation led to Canon Glenn Gardner, a priest with the Institute of Christ the King, a Society of Apostolic Life (as opposed to a religious order), being assigned to St. Joseph as an associate to the pastor, Father Richard Orlinski. “The English Mass schedule will remain the same, the soup kitchen will continue, and nothing will be taken away.”

      Canon Gardner resides at St. Joseph, while Father Orlinski continues to live at St. John Bosco in Hammond, where he also pastors. “Both of them will be available to the people to serve their needs,” added the bishop, “an added plus.”

      The Ordinary Form of the Mass, or Novus Ordo, was implemented in the liturgical reform of 1970 and is celebrated in English today in most Catholic churches in the U.S. It will continue to be offered at 4:30 p.m. Saturdays and 9 a.m. Sundays in the church, and in the chapel at 9 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, with reconciliation from 3:30-4 p.m. Saturdays.

      In addition, Canon Gardner now celebrates the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, or Tridentine Mass, in Latin at 11 a.m. Sundays, 6 p.m. Wednesdays, and 8 a.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, all in the church. “The response has been good,” said Canon Gardner, whose first Sunday Mass in November drew about 200 people, with weekday Masses drawing 10-20.

      The bishop, appointed by Pope Francis four years ago to head the Diocese of Gary, offered two reasons for adding the Latin Mass at St. Joseph. “Ever since I’ve been here, people who prefer to worship in the Extraordinary Form have been petitioning me for a parish home (within the diocese), and this provides a home for them,” Bishop Hying explained, adding that supporters, some of whom have formed the Northwest Indiana Latin Mass Community (nwilatin.org), “number upwards of 300 people, a lot of whom are young families.”

      To serve them, the bishop looked to St. Joseph. “It is architecturally and aesthetically one of our most beautiful churches, yet (the congregation is) shrinking and aging,” said the bishop, who hopes adding the Latin Mass community “will increase the vitality of the parish and bring more resources and volunteers.” Those who embrace the Latin Mass “can join the parish. A lot of activities will be held in common, while the Extraordinary Form of the Mass will add to the life of the parish,” he noted,

      “We learned is that a great many people leave the Diocese of Gary to travel to the various Latin Mass parishes in the dioceses of Chicago, Joliet, and South Bend so that they can attend Latin Mass on Sunday. Now with St. Joseph in Hammond, these Catholics can finally participate in their own diocese and be a part of a parish that they can truly call home,” said Donald Taylor, a board member of the NWI Latin Mass Community group.

      Canon Gardner said “One of the most striking things about the solemn, or Low Mass, is the language itself, which lends itself to the sacred mystery, while the High Mass, with a deacon and sub-deacon assisting the priest, offers the splendor and beauty of the liturgy. A lot of young people are yearning for transcendence and a closeness to God that is good, true and real.”

      A “schola,” or Latin choir, is forming at St. Joseph, and Canon Gardner said most worshippers “bring their own missals containing all the prayers and readings for the year” to supplement the parish’s missalettes.

      The canon plans to offer “all the sacraments in the Extraordinary Form” and will begin a Latin class in the new year, eventually adding adult theology classes.

      The families of both Ashley Richards, of Hammond, and Tim Ahearn, of St. John, have attended all Sunday Masses celebrated in Latin since Canon Gardner arrived at St. Joseph.

      “The traditional liturgy is just so rich and so beautiful, it truly has a transcendent feeling,” said Richards, whose son Elijah, 9, received his First Comm last year at a Chicago parish devoted to Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. “Your soul is elevated. . .you feel connected to the Church of the past, using the mother tongue of the Church.

      “I definitely feel (St. Joseph) will become my parish,” she added. “I can already see a connection between families, talking and praying together.”

      Ahearn, who learned to serve the Latin Mass at the Carmelite Shrine in Munster, which offers a Latin Mass at 5 p.m. Saturdays, plan to join St. Joseph with his wife and their four youngest children, hoping also to share the Latin Mass with some of their five older children.

      “I would encourage people to attend because it is the most beautiful thing this side of heaven,” he said of the Latin Mass. It can be a bit intimidating if you are used to only the Novus Ordo rite, so I would suggest just immersing yourself in it at first, without trying to follow along in a missal. Watch the beauty.”

Latin Mass 2

Facing the high altar and flanked by fellow Institute of Christ the King priests and altar servers, Canon Matthew Talarico (top), raises the chalice at consecration during the Latin Mass celebrated at St. Joseph in Hammond on Dec. 3. Called the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, the Mass celebrated mostly in Latin was the main form of Catholic worship for centuries until the Post-Conciliar Mass featuring vernacular languages was introduced after the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Latin Mass 3

Eight-year-old Teresa Hanners of St. Ann, Ill. kneels as her sister Jessica Taylor of Merrillville is seated during the Latin Mass celebrated by priests of the Institute of Christ the King and Bishop Donald J. Hying, at St. Joseph in Hammond on Dec. 3. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Latin Mass 4

Bishop Donald J. Hying delivers his homily as priests from the Institute of Christ the King and altar servers look on during the Latin Mass celebrated at St. Joseph in Hammond on Dec. 3. Bishop Hying, thanked parishioners and guests of the downtown Hammond parish, a place where he said "the beauty of the Gospel is seen in stone and glass," and encouraged the worshippers to support regular parish functions while benefitting from the "addition of the beautiful presence" of the instutute and the Latin Mass. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Latin Mass 5

Faithful knee at the comm rail as priests from the Institute of Christ the King distribute Holy Comm during the Latin Mass celebrated at St. Joseph in Hammond on Dec. 3. Called the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, the Mass celebrated mostly in Latin was the main form of Catholic worship for centuries until the Post-Conciliar Mass featuring vernacular languages was introduced after the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

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