Providence church looking to the past to help secure its future
#1
Providence church looking to the past to help secure its future

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) --  Saint Mary's Church on Broadway is going back in time in order to move forward.

When Jim Forte joined Saint Mary's a decade ago, the pews were full and morale was high.


"We had a very good crowd of people we had a lot of people attending and it was very nice," Forte said.

But Forte says changes made in recent years caused more people to leave.

"Then it became a question of survival. We knew that down the road, not being able to sustain it financially, it would have closed," he said.

Desperate times called for drastic measures.

"In August of 2018, Bishop Tobin invited our order to come in and take over Saint Mary's," Father John Berg, St. Mary's Pastor said. "We do what's called the traditional Latin mass, for those who are older would've known it in 1962."

The entire mass, except for the homily, is celebrated in Latin.

"I have to admit I was a bit skeptical because it was a bit different. and most people said oh if you say you're going a step backward, you're going back in time," Forte said.

It turns out, that's exactly what the church needed to move forward.

Attendance numbers started increasing as people from all across New England were attracted to the traditional format.

"I would say the average travel time is about 45 minutes for a parishioner on a Sunday," Berg said.

"I've been attending traditional masses pretty frequently for the past four or so years but there's nothing like this, I've been waiting for something like this to come along, something with the full kind of community life that isn't offered anywhere near where I live," Jack Marriott said.

There is confidence this new niche is enough to keep St. Mary's thriving.

"No, it will never close now, it will never close," Forte said.

Work is also being done to restore the building itself. Renovations to the sanctuary and the church's bell tower are expected to be completed in the next few years.
"There are in truth three states of the converted: the beginning,  the middle and the perfection. In the beginning, they experience the charms of sweetness; in the middle, the contests of temptation; and in the end, the fullness of perfection."
-- Pope St. Gregory

“One day, through the Rosary and the Scapular, Our Lady will save the world.”
-- attributed to Saint Domenic
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#2
Returning to tradition and ditching the Church of Nice, hippie music helps draw people?  Whodathunk.  In the words of Gomer the Briliant, "Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!"
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I received news of this in my inbox recently (I'm subscribed to the FSSP's newsletter). Good to hear. Honestly, I think at this point, it's just a matter of time. This is the future of the Church. The crowd pushing the liberal agenda is overwhelmingly older, whereas those of us who want to be faithful and traditional are by and large a younger group (and we tend to have more children per family as well overall).
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The irony is that used to be one of the more liberal parishes in Prov.  The replacement makes more of an impact.  Good to see.
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(04-02-2019, 05:59 PM)MacPasquale Wrote: The irony is that used to be one of the more liberal parishes in Prov.  The replacement makes more of an impact.  Good to see.

You could say this is very...providential.  :cool:
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(04-02-2019, 06:13 AM)Jeeter Wrote: Returning to tradition and ditching the Church of Nice, hippie music helps draw people?  Whodathunk.  In the words of Gomer the Briliant, "Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!"

I was going to the TLM in Providence prior to this and switched over to this Parish. It appears the early Mass at Holy Name of Jesus on Sunday is no longer being celebrated.
"There are in truth three states of the converted: the beginning,  the middle and the perfection. In the beginning, they experience the charms of sweetness; in the middle, the contests of temptation; and in the end, the fullness of perfection."
-- Pope St. Gregory

“One day, through the Rosary and the Scapular, Our Lady will save the world.”
-- attributed to Saint Domenic
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