...Or how to break things if they aren't working already (in Switzerland)... or make them better before they go wrong (in France)...
|"Saint Pierre des Latins", Nancy, France|
On our recent visit to Switzerland we discovered that, although we were surrounded by EF Masses at [F]SSPX churches we would have to drive over an hour into another diocese to find a legitimate EF Mass I asked the priest there why there were none closer to where we were staying, particularly considering the proliferation of [F]SSPX Masses which presumably indicated a need and desire for the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. The answer was depressing in its simplicity: the Bishop of the area in which we were staying has Écône in his diocese. Because of this the Bishop has declared that he will never permit the older form of the Mass to take place under his authority, despite there being at least two dozen regular EF masses by the [F]SSPX in his area.
Before you start to hyperventilate, compare and contrast this with the situation in Nancy, France where we stopped the following Sunday for Mass at the wonderful Eglise Saint-Pierre with Abbé Husson of the FSSP and where the Extraordinary Form of the Mass has been said regularly since 1991 with the blessing of the local Bishop under Pope John Paul II's motu proprio: Ecclesia Dei. After Mass I asked Abbe Husson how it came to pass that Eglise Saint Pierre had nurtured and served a community devoted to the older form of the Mass. It was a simple story, he said: after the [F]SSPX schism and excommunications, a local sedevacantist priest started saying the Latin Mass. Determined that none of his flock should stray for want of spiritual sustenance, the local Bishop not only gave a parish to the FSSP to say legitmate Latin Masses, but he gave them a jewel of a church in the city centre.
Thank God for far-sighted Bishops!