Why Such a Focus on Extraordinary Form in Catholic Media and Online Discussion?

Why Such a Focus on Extraordinary Form in Catholic Media and Online Discussion? March 22, 2022

Priest celebrating extraordinary form
A priest celebrating extraordinary form (CC0 Ramses Sudiang Unsplash)

I think the extraordinary form Latin Mass is good and can help some to have a deeper relationship with Jesus. I wonder about how much attention we give it in online discussion though. I wrote about this on FrMatthewLC.com:

This post is not set to give a definitive answer to the question. Instead, my intention is to give an approximation of how what percentage of Catholics at Sunday Mass in an average week in the USA are attending an extraordinary form Mass. Then to ask the obvious question: why is it so much of a focus in Catholic media and online discussions?

I have a generally positive view of extraordinary form. As a young man, I went to the FSSP parish a bit. As a seminarian, I learned the extraordinary form, and have celebrated Mass according to it. I do not regularly celebrate it, but I fully respect it. I would encourage serious Catholics who are curious or interested to attend a Mass celebrated in extraordinary form. I have always said people should go to the Mass available to them that helps them love Jesus most. For some that will be extraordinary form, but for most that will be ordinary form. I generally think if a large enough group of people are of that mindset in a city, it’s best to provide a Mass in extraordinary to help them spiritually. […]

This gives us 119,295 extraordinary form attendees on a random Sunday. (658 * [85%+15%/2] * 196.) […]

Of those attending Mass on a random Sunday in the USA, approximately 0.53% attend an extraordinary form parish (119K/22.5M). This is a small percentage. It is estimated that the USA has one of the highest percentages of extraordinary form attendees in the world.

You can read more over on my other site.

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