Holy Land: The Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Authorizes the Tridentine Mass

Source: FSSPX News

On September 23, 2011, the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem, Archbishop Fouad Twal, published a decree authorizing the celebration of the traditional Mass.  “In the diocese of the latin patriarchate, the Eucharist is still celebrated in the ordinary form of the Roman Missal but, at the request of the pilgrims that come in great numbers and from all over the world to the holy places, the celebration of the Eucharist in the extraordinary form can be allowed,” indicated the patriarch on his website on November 15, 2011.

This decree authorizes “the priests of the Society of St. Pius X to celebrate privately in the basilicas or sanctuaries, without advertising their initiatives,” and adds that this celebration should “still remain exceptional” and follow the norms contained in the Instruction on the application of the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum (April 30, 2011), published by the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.

When questioned by La Croix, Fr. Claude Boivin, first assistant of the SSPX District of France, who has accompanied pilgrimages to the Holy Land for many years, explained that the Society of St. Pius X lived up until now under the decree of the interdiction promulgated in 1988 by Archbishop Michel Sabbah, then the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, but that, in reality, the priests “received the good will of the local clergy”.  “Except in certain places, things went pretty well,” he added.  “I myself have celebrated in the Holy Land in almost thirty churches, even at the Holy Sepulchre in 2011,” and the pilgrimage Masses have always been celebrated “without any publicity.” (sources: La Croix/apic – DICI#245 Nov 26, 2011)