By: Simon Caldwell
A community of priests who celebrate Mass and liturgies according to traditional Latin rites has taken up residence in Shrewsbury.
Canon Scott Smith, an American, who was ordained on July 6th, 2017 by Cardinal Raymond Burke, has become the first member of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest to move to the town at the invitation of the Rt Rev Mark Davies, Bishop of Shrewsbury.
Canon Smith, 40, will be joined by Abbe Tim Zazocek, a Slovenian seminarian, to form a fledgling community based at St Winefride's Presbytery, Monkmoor.
Previously a member of an oratory run by the Institute in St Louis, Missouri, Canon Smith will become part of the clergy team of Shrewsbury Cathedral.
From Monday November 12, he will celebrate a Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite - the Tridentine rite - in the Cathedral each weekday at 7.30am.
On Saturday, Canon Smith will celebrate Mass in Latin at St Winefride's at 11am and on Sundays will celebrate Mass at 12.15pm.
The community will become the second foundation of the Institute of Christ the King in the Diocese of Shrewsbury in just seven years.
In 2011, the Institute took over Ss Peter, Paul and St Philomena in New Brighton, the Wirral, when Bishop Davies designated the church as a shrine with the specific mission of fostering Eucharistic Adoration.
Canon Amaury Montjean, the rector of the shrine church - the first to be run by the Institute in the UK - welcomed the new foundation in Shrewsbury.
"This is really a very exciting new mission because we feel even closer to the Cathedral and closer to the Bishop, as the centre of the liturgy and at the heart of the Diocese, which is a privilege for us," said Canon Montjean.
"Also, being part of the clergy of the Cathedral will help us to work even more closely with diocesan priests and establish and strengthen friendship with the young priests there."
He added: "We would also be faithful to the liturgical traditions of the Institute as well as the habit of welcoming our friends with a touch of French cuisine."
The Institute of Christ the King is a society of apostolic life of pontifical right, with a strong emphasis on missionary work, mainly through running parishes and schools.
It was co-founded by French priest Mgr Gilles Wach and Fr Phillipe Mora in Gabon, Africa, in 1990. It has its headquarters in Florence, Italy, and its priests serve in 12 countries. In 2004 a community of sisters was founded to aid the priests in their mission.
The order draws its spirituality from the inspirations of St Benedict, St Francis de Sales and St Thomas Aquinas.
The Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite was first codified at the Council of Trent under Pope St Pius V in the 1560s and was last modified by Pope St John XXIII in 1962.
It is celebrated in Latin with the priest leading the faithful in facing east. Its use was suppressed during the liturgical reforms that followed the Second Vatican Council of the 1960s in favour of the new rite, or Ordinary Form, of the Mass in the vernacular with the priest facing the congregation.
In 2007 Pope Benedict XVI released Summorum Pontificum, a document issued "on his own initiative", permitting the rite to be used wherever a "stable group" requests it.
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