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Saturday, October 22, 2016
Priests attend Latin Mass course at Ushaw
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The Latin Mass Society’s (LMS) residential training conference for priests wishing to learn the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Traditional Latin Mass)was held at Ushaw College, Durham, from Monday 20 April to Thursday 23 April (Low Week).

Twenty priests, mostly from the northern English dioceses, received intensive training in the celebration of Mass in the Usus Antiquior or Extraordinary Form.

Tuition was given in small groups by priests who regularly offer Mass in the Traditional Latin Rite. Four of the groups were for beginners or near-beginners and concentrated on Low Mass. The other two groups were for priests already proficient in Low Mass and who wished to study the more complicated forms of Missa Cantata or Solemn Mass.

The conference participants felt thoroughly welcomed at Ushaw College, one of England’s most prestigious seminaries. Particularly useful was the availability of many side altars suitable for practice and private Masses. The conference made use of no less than ten of these.

St Cuthbert’s Chapel was used for all the public services. These included Lauds, Vespers, Compline, Rosary and Benediction as well as the daily conference Mass. The plainsong chant was provided by the schola of the Rudgate Singers; and at the final Solemn Mass the polyphonic choir, Antiphon, sang Byrd’s Mass for Four Voices.

As a seminary chapel with plenty of choir stalls, St Cuthbert’s Chapel was ideally suited for a gathering which included so many priests. The impressive gothic architecture, cathedral-like accoustic and traditionally styled sanctuary made a perfect setting for the Latin liturgies.

Father Thomas Crean OP, who includes part-time hospital chaplaincy amongst his duties, gave a well-received lecture on the pastoral relevance of the Traditional Rite of Holy Unction, Viaticum and Commendation of the Dying.

Canon Stephen Shield, Dean of St Peter’s Cathedral, Lancaster, who celebrated some of the conference liturgies, gave the keynote address at the convivial Gala Dinner at which the priests lustily sang ‘God Bless Our Pope’.

One of the priest participants said: “It rejoiced our hearts to hear the Gothic splendours of the Pugin chapel of St Cuthbert ringing once more to the sound of plainsong and the Mass of Ages. It is to be hoped that more clergy will rekindle joy in the priesthood through discovering the riches of our Catholic heritage.”

Doctor Joseph Shaw, LMS Chairman, said: “The glorious sight of the great chapel with Solemn Mass, two choirs, more than a score of priests in choir, and a good number of local faithful, was surpassed by the bustle of the enormous sacristy and the whisper of private Masses at innumerable altars in the early morning. What the LMS conference represented is the re-establishment of the Traditional Mass as part of the tool-kit of parish priests. It was wonderful to see Ushaw College doing what it has done for two centuries: enabling the training of priests in the Church’s great liturgical tradition”.

The training conference at Ushaw College is the third the LMS has organised. Two very successful conferences were held at Merton College, Oxford, in 2007/8, attended by over 95 priests. However, the LMS wanted to move its conferences to unambiguously Catholic surroundings and Ushaw College was an obvious choice.

The LMS is organising a further training conference for priests at All Saints’ Pastoral Centre, London Colney, St Albans, Herts (the Archdiocese of Westminster’s premier conference centre) from Monday 24 to Friday 28 August. Details are available from the LMS office. For further information, please contact John Medlin, General Manager, or James Murphy, LMS Office Manager, on (T) 020 7404 7284; (F) 020 7831 5585;
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Tags: Durham, The Latin Mass Society (LMS) Ushaw College

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