Getting a TLM
How do I start a traditional Latin Mass apostolate in my area?

If you asked several priests to offer the traditional Latin Mass and they were less than enthusiastic in complying withSummorum Pontificum, don’t despair.  Remember the old Benedictine dictum, “Ora et Labora.”  I will provide ideas for getting the traditional Latin Mass in your area.  In 1999, our diocese had only one monthly traditional Latin Mass.  We now have approved traditional Latin Masses in three locations.  Having successfully introduced the traditional Latin Mass in my area, I would like to offer some ideas that will hopefully help you.

1. Recruit people to join the group.  Consider getting a group of like-minded Catholics together to pray the rosary on a monthly basis.  If you don’t know many traditional Catholics, write one paragraph explaining that you would like to form a Rosary group whose purpose would be to pray for the restoration of the traditional Mass in your area.  Include your name, email address and phone number. Then, email your announcement to the webmaster at Una Voce.  He will post your announcement.  You should also email The Remnant and ask them to post the Una Voce announcement on their site.  Another possibility would be to join a Yahoo or Google traditional Catholic mail list and have the moderator post your announcement.  You could also join the following traditional Facebook group and list your announcement: Finally, find out whether an EWTN affiliated Catholic radio station is located in your area.  If there is, contact the station with your announcement. Then, follow up with a phone call to the station manager. Most likely, the station will air the announcement for free.  Wait a few weeks and pray.  You should start to get some responses. 

2. Start the monthly rosary. When you have several Catholics in your group,  start to pray a monthly rosary for the establishment of the traditional Mass in your area.  Then, contact Una Voce at and explain that you would like to become an Una Voce chapter.  Ask what is involved and explain that you are trying to get a traditional Mass restored to your area.  You will find them very helpful.  Also, it would be a good idea to have somebody in your group create a website for your Una Voce chapter.  After two or three months, begin to invite traditional priests to offer one-time private Masses for your group.  Use the internet to contact priests of the FSSP, the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, or diocesan priests who offer the traditional Mass on a regular basis. Invite them to offer the traditional Mass in your home. Once you have a date when a priest can visit, invite friends and family to attend.  Schedule two or three one-time private Masses and have a guest sign-in sheet where people can write their names, addresses, and contact information.  Continue to hold monthly rosaries.  By now, you should have more people attending and you might consider holding a meeting following a monthly rosary to discuss whether it is time to approach some priests in the area about offering the traditional Mass.  Before you do this, familiarize yourselves with the articles in Summorum Pontificum,  After the next rosary,  compile a list of priests who might be interested in offering the TLM or would be willing to have the traditional Mass offered in their parish.  Be creative.  Ask strong pro-life Catholics whether they know of any priests who might be willing to allow the traditional Mass.  Very often, these wonderful Catholics have interacted with many priests while distributing pro-life voting guides and/or literature. 

3. Get at least twenty-five letters from Catholics requesting the traditional Latin Mass.  You should use the contacts that you received from the private Masses.  Call those people and provide the following link as guidance for them in writing the letters:
Once you receive the letters, make copies of them.  Continue the monthly rosary.

4. Start calling priests and/or making appointments for face to face meetings. Keep the original letters and then have the other members of the Rosary group visit priests armed with these letters. When your group members speak to diocesan priests remember that they should do so with charity.  As Michael Davies wrote in a letter to me in 2002, "I have received many letters ... written in quite violent tones to their bishops, saying precisely what they think of him and the way he runs his diocese.  In every case all their accusations are justified, but they might just as well have written a one sentence letter saying: "Dear Bishop, Please do not grant the Mass." "  The same concept applies when approaching diocesan priests using the guidelines of Summorum Pontificum.  Continue the monthly rosary.

5. Begin to form a schola/choir.  It will most likely take some time before you find a priest who is willing to offer the traditional Latin Mass or host a TLM in his parish.  Be patient. Use the time to begin forming a schola or choir.  Taking this approach will help your group in the future.  When you get the traditional Mass, you will already have a schola/choir with some experience in singing the Ordinaries (Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, and Agnus Dei) and Propers (Introit, Gradual, Alleluia, Offertory, and Communion).  Continue the monthly rosary.

Here are some resources for learning Gregorian Chant.

The following site provides recordings and scores for the Ordinaries and Propers  for the entire ecclesiastical year!  By playing the recordings daily, your group can slowly and deliberately learn the chants of the Church.

If  learning the Gregorian Chant propers is daunting for your group, try learning the ordinaries for the Missa de Angelis and Orbis Factor Masses.  Then, use the simplified Rossini Propers.

Guide to Square Notes

A Gregorian Chant Master Class

This is one of the best hymnals available.

6. Be persistent in calling priests.  Your group may have to do this for four to six months.  Once you have the schola/choir formed, begin to rehearse using the resources above.  Continue the monthly rosary.

7. Contact the bishop.  If you have found a priest who is willing to offer the TLM or host it, congratulations.  You have much to celebrate!! However, if you have not experienced success, it is time to write a charitable letter to the bishop using the guidelines at the following link. Make sure that everybody in your group writes separate letters to the bishop.  Wait one month.  If the bishop does not respond, send one more round of separate letters.  Make sure to keep copies of the original letters.  Continue the monthly Rosary and the schola/choir rehearsals.

8. Contact the Ecclesia Dei Commission.  If your bishop has not responded, you should write to the Ecclesia Dei Commission in Rome. Once again, see the following link. 

9.  Be patient and persistent.  Continue to ask local priests whether they will offer the TLM for your group, hold the monthly rosaries, and schola/choir rehearsals.  At this point, some people in the group may begin to lose patience with the process, etc.  Don't despair.  It took our group almost ten years to get the traditional Mass.

10.  If it looks like you are in this for the long haul, continue to arrange one-time traditional Latin Masses with priests who offer the TLM.  You may even consider having your schola sing for these Masses.  Continue the monthly rosaries and schola/choir rehearsals.

Here are two links that offer additional advice about getting the traditional Latin Mass in your area.

Edmund Campion

Messages In This Thread
Getting a TLM - by Edmund Campion - 07-02-2014, 11:29 AM
Re: Getting a TLM - by Dino - 07-02-2014, 04:50 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by GodFirst - 07-02-2014, 09:03 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by Dino - 07-02-2014, 10:03 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by VoxClamantis - 07-02-2014, 10:40 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by Edmund Campion - 07-03-2014, 07:58 AM
Re: Getting a TLM - by Old Salt - 07-03-2014, 10:59 AM
Re: Getting a TLM - by salus - 07-03-2014, 06:36 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by iona_scribe - 07-03-2014, 06:52 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by trident59 - 07-04-2014, 02:05 PM
Re: Getting a TLM - by AllSeasons - 07-04-2014, 10:22 PM

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)