Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

Why Don’t You Just Twist the Knife Already, Father?

January 28th, 2010, Promulgated by Dr. K

As predicted, Fr. Tanck is using his metaphors once again to suggest how negative the St. Thomas people are and how they need to embrace love (and bend over to the CTK/SMM/SC parishes). There is no specific mention of what will be said this weekend in the bulletin, but one can expect it will be the obvious (St. Thomas and St. Salome will close, while Fr. Tanck’s parish before clustering, Christ the King, will remain open).

Here are his comments. See if you can find the hidden message. To help in your search, emphasis is added:

“Our second readings for the last few weeks have been from St. Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 12:14 – 13:13). We have been reading about the gifts or charisms of the Holy Spirit to individuals for the building up of the community, the Church. We read that the Chuch, the Body of Christ, is made of many parts that function together for the good of all and for the mission of evangelization entrusted to the Church by the Lord, Jesus. This week we read in 1 Corinthians that the greatest of these spiritual gifts within the community of believers, even more so than faith and hope, is love. Paul tells us that love is patient and kind, it is not rude, nor does it seek its own interests. [Hmmm… Wonder what this is about…] He says that it is not quick tempered nor does it brood over injury. It does not take pleasure in wrongdoing [i.e- going to the Vatican concerning the closure, writing to the bishop, causing any troubles for Fr. Tanck, withholding money, leaving the parish] but rejoices in the truth. [Basically, the situation is what it is, now deal with it and come to CTK parish]

As we move forward [“In Hope’?] in our pastoral planning let us all pray for the gifts of love, so that our bonds of communion may deepen among us so that we can truly become one in the Lord.

In Him… Norm Tanck, CSB.”

I’m not sure if everyone out there who reads this blog will make the connections I’m making between his year-long series of bulletin articles and the people of St. Thomas, but to me they are clear as crystal. Fr. Tanck is obviously angry that the people of St. Thomas did not roll over like dogs at the master’s command. It appears that he was hoping the process of shutting down St. Thomas and St. Salome would be quicker and relatively painless. He probably hoped that nobody would write to the Vatican to complain about the process, or try to delay and overturn the IPPG decision. All of this happened, and now we see the writings of a frustrated pastor, who is taking every opportunity to deliver commentary about the St. Thomas people. Ok, he probably does not want to close parishes, but I hardly believe he will be shedding tears when St. Thomas will close after the words which have been exchanged between both parties. Folks, there is a darn good reason why St. Thomas’ attendance has plummeted since the clustering process began, and one must look no further than the abrasiveness demonstrated by the cluster pastor towards the people whom he was entrusted to lead. I’m sorry to say it, but that’s a large reason why St. Thomas is in the position it’s in today.

Let us recall the words of Fr. Tanck from the August 23rd, 2009 bulletin:

“The reaction to the plan at St. Thomas by some parishioners has been negative, vehement, and organized [Zing]. Before the STA council had a chance to meet and discuss the plan, a letter was sent to Bishop Clark, with a copy to the Papal Nuncio in Washington challenging the plan. No one signing the letter spoke to me about the proposal or the process before it was sent. If they had they found have found out that the letter was premature because all that was presented to the parishes was a plan, not yet ready to even be submitted to the bishop. [And that has all changed 5 months later. These parishioners were right to react the way they did, for their parish might have been closed that much sooner had they just said “OK, close us down.”]

It is my hope that the people of St. Thomas will get up and leave the moment the announcement is made that their parish will be shut down. Try your best to avoid saying things that are better left unsaid, or taking actions that may lead nowhere and cause more hurt. You can vote with your feet and your wallets, and believe me, that message will be heard louder than shouting at the pastor after Mass. There is no need for these good people to have to sit there and take more abuse from those who have been nothing but brash with these people since the plan to close was made. For those considering a departure from the parish (and why stay if it’s going to close — you’d just be supporting CTK and the new cluster), here are two addresses with Mass times that you may find useful:

Our Lady of Victory
210 Pleasant St.
Rochester NY, 14604

Masses: Saturday: 4:30 PM, Sunday 10 AM, 7:30 PM


St. Stanislaus (Latin Mass Community)
34 St. Stanislaus St.

Rochester NY, 14621

Traditional Latin Mass: Sundays at 1:30 PM

Both of these communities will eagerly welcome you, St. Thomas parishioners. You will not hear chastisements from the pastor calling you “negative, vehement, and organized” for loving your parish and traditional practices. You will receive solid pastoral care, hear orthodox preaching, and worship the Lord in reverence. Please consider the invitation. Why expose yourselves and your children to a community where they are not welcome, and where orthodoxy is being crushed to make way for Spirit of VII conformity? Make the jump the second the closure announcement is made. You will never look back.

Note: The announcement has not been made, though all signs point to it being made this weekend. Given the way the IPPG quickly rejected the St. Thomas parish council’s plan for a personal parish, there is no reason right now to believe St. Thomas will remain open. The possibility does exist, but it’s highly unlikely.

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5 Responses to “Why Don’t You Just Twist the Knife Already, Father?”

  1. Gen says:

    We have no agenda. Fr. Tanck is awfully clear: "The reaction to the plan at St. Thomas by some parishioners has been negative, vehement, and organized." How on Earth is that supposed to "build the City of God?"

    Fr. Tanck has had time and time again to prove his ability to defend his parishes. I think we all know how that's turning out.

  2. Anonymous says:

    But wait a minute. Love is patient, love is kind. Let's ALL those who signed the liturgy petition recind their protests s we al can build the city of God and become lovy dovy. It works both ways. Just because you are a liberal in the DOR, you can'y have your way everytime.

  3. Laura says:

    Sorry to make so many posts!

    I will be coming to Our Lady of Victory this Sunday for the first time since leaving St. Thomas. I have been there in the past, and always loved Fr. Antinarelli's preaching, his respect and fear of God, and the beautiful music from your cantor. I hope there is a pew open for me and my other friends from St. Thomas!

    Peace to you all!

  4. Gen says:

    Here's an idea – OLV takes over the STA worship site. Something tells me only good could come of this.

    Then again, reality descends to crush hope in this place. Smack of the crozier to Bishop Clark's naivete. (I'm being charitable, folks. I'd say more but I don't want to appear cold-hearted.)

  5. Laura: I would get to OLV at least 10 minutes before Mass starts to find a place. It general is very, very crowded, if not packed. Also, you have the Latin Mass at 1:30 p.m. at St. Stan's too.

    Good idea, Gen. The Bishop wouldn't let it happen.

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