Tributes in this Time of Epikeia
Today a priest was born. We don't know who or where, but when history looks back the annals will show that God refreshed His Church with new blood to replace another whom He has taken from us. And yet, in His mercy He has preserved another dedicated priest to continue in the apostolic work for the restoration of Holy Mother Church. Two men are profiled who have served as exemplary models for faithful Catholics to continue the fight no matter the odds. May they be an inspiration during this time of dire emergency when Holy Mother Church is, as Our Lady foretold, "in eclipse."
"MIT BRENNENDER SORGE" (With the Greatest Sorrow):
Today we bury one faithful traditional priest near Houston, while 400 miles east in New Orleans another celebrates his 40th Anniversary of his priestly ordination quietly, deprived of celebrating the Holy Sacrifice in the church of his ordination where his great uncle is buried in the sanctuary. Today a mother has given birth somewhere in the world to a baby boy who, through the grace of God, will receive the vocare to become a priest according to the Order of Melchisedech and will provide the Immemorial Mass of All Ages for future generations, hopefully in a time when the Church is no longer in such dire crisis. The Church supplies for the good of souls when the law contradicts the constituted evangelic traditions. Such is the case in these times of crisis and emergency in the Church which can rightly be called Epikeia. The term comes from the Greek word meaning "equity" and, according to the Angelic Doctor Saint Thomas Aquinas, is applied in moral theology to human law or even to ecclesiastical law which does not bind if right reason indicates that the legislator did not wish it to bind. For if obeying the law here and now were disproportionate to the end which the law has in view, then it would harm souls. Thus Holy Mother Church voids those laws and, for the good of souls, provides the faculties to priests to administer the sacraments and say the True Mass without the permission or approval of those whose authority is gravely questioned, such as the conciliar church and its hierarchical apparatus today. Thus Holy Mother Church supplies for that which is lacking. And it is in this state of circumstances today that we give tribute to two priests who have realized the necessity of Ecclesia supplet for the welfare of souls.
Father Carl Pulvermacher, OFM Cap.
Today at ten a.m. His Excellency Bishop Richard Williamson will officiate at a Pontifical Requiem High Mass for the repose of the soul of Father Carl Pulvermacher, OFM Cap. who died on Memorial Day this year in Dickinson, Texas at the Society of St. Pius X Priory south of Houston. The Wausaw Daily Herald, the major publication nearest where he was born and raised in north-central Wisconsin provides some of the details of his life for indeed Fr. Carl was a cheesehead in every bit of the good sense of being from strong Germanic stock. This is borne out by the fact he was one of nine children born on a farm in Marshfield, Wisconsin which is southwest from Wausau, directly north of Wisconsin Rapids and due east a few hundred miles from the Twin Cities. His parents Hubert Joseph and Cecelia Gertrude Lenerz Pulvermacher saw to it that he was duly baptized at the family's parish church in Bakerville shortly after his birth in February 1927 and, because of a strong Catholic upbringing, entered the Capuchin seminary in 1945 as the GI's were returning home from Europe and the Pacific Theater.
Father Carl was ordained a Franciscan Capuchin in September 1952 and was destined to do missionary work his entire life. He was assigned to the native American reservation of the Crowe Indian Nation in Montana and, like the great missionaries from Saint Francis of Assisi to Saint Francis Xavier to Saint Isaac Jogues to Father Jacques Marquette to Father Pierre De Smet, Fr. Pulvermacher lived the Gospel and converted countless Crowe Indians and so loved that he was proclaimed an honorary Crowe. He was aided by having at his disposal a plane to traverse the distances in bringing the sacraments to many throughout Big Sky country. Unfortunately, at one of the mission schools - St. Francis Xavier Mission, he suffered extreme burns saving others during a fire that had unfortunately broken out in the school. Determined to help rebuild it, despite his condition, he encouraged reconstruction from his recuperating assignment back in Marathon, Wisconsin at the Capuchin's St. Anthony's Monastery where he also had to deal with the changes wrought by Vatican II.
However, loyal to his order and after a full recovery, he was assigned to the missions down under in Australia. The Daily Herald had nothing concrete or the duration of time he ministered to the Aussies. But it was in 1977 that he was drawn to the Priory where he passed away. There, working in harmony with the fledgling Society of St. Pius X and realizing he must return to the True Latin Mass and the teachings he was weaned on, he ensconsed himself in Dickinson and co-founded The Angelus which would become the Society's official publication in America. He remained in Texas until he was 64, but continued, despite his journalistic work, to favor the missions. Now he was not reaching those who had never heard of the Faith, now he was reaching displaced Catholics who wondered where the True Faith had gone. He traveled the country, eventually being assigned in Florida both for his health and the need that was growing as he traversed the state even as age and illness crept up on him. He returned to Texas for he realized his time was limited and there, under the care of the Society, breathed his last on May 29th. In order to accommodate those traveling from all over the country for his Requiem Mass at Queen of Angels Church and funeral interment at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, the date was set for today - Ember Wednesday.
How many souls he touched, no one but God can determine, but there are many and the gift of Faith he was given is due to the total Catholicity and commitment of his parents who produced four Capuchin priests. Besides his parents, two of his brothers preceded him in death - Father Pius Pulvermacher OFM Cap. and Father Claude Pulvermacher OFM Cap. as well as his sister Vivian. He is survived by four sisters and his brother Father Lucian Pulvermacher OFM Cap.
That last name may prompt some to roll their eyes for Lucian is the same who declared himself a pope in this time of Epikeia - Pius XIII and lives not far from us, though I have never met or communicated with him.
In sizing up the situation, I would say that little did the Pulvermacher family, so totally Catholic to the core, realize in those tranquil and booming days of the Church in the forties and fifties that within 50 more years the Church that they so loved would be unrecognizable. This, I might add, illustrates how the Pulvermacher clan would seem to identify how fractured the Church has become thanks to the devastation of Vatican II. While one of his brothers remained a Novus Ordo priest, Lucian followed tradition and saw the calamity of the conciliar church in such a state that he went to the extreme to where he declared himself head of the Church. I doubt his parents would have approved, and some members of his family consider Lucian mentally deficient, but, again, in this time of Epikeia, who can determine what is in his heart? The same with his brother who subscribes to the conciliar church. Confusion reigns supreme. Fr. Carl himself struggled with the differences and was befriended by an Archbishop that had a great influence in his life - Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre. There are many who were touched by His Excellency and there are many who left the Society. The reasons are many in this time of Epikeia and who is right or wrong can only be determined by God. While Fr. Lucian believes he is right, Fr. Carl believed otherwise. Is this not the same with those who believe the Society is right, while others insist on independent priests, and others are moved by the reverence and total Catholicity of those who do not believe the conciliar popes are Catholic and therefore hold the opinion - and that is all it is for it does not affect faith and morals or the Faith - sedevacantism? Is this not the same for those who try to right things from within by staying with the Novus Ordo as one stays with a sinking ship in hopes of helping the survivors (and there are many, too many) or by clinging to the vestiges of tradition through the Indult? Is this not the same for those who, because they have been so deceived over the past half century, have decided that there are no consecrated bishops left and therefore no priests they can trust and so remain at home, praying their missals as they always had before the revolution?
And who is right? Again, only God can answer that. We have saints, Doctors of the Church and past reliable pontiffs whose arguments surely don't favor recognizing modern Rome considering the circumstances and this gives rise to Ecclesia supplicet and a time of emergency, did I say Epikeia? That was the entire basis for the consecrations by Monsignor Lefebvre in 1988. That was the reason Archbishop Pierre Martin Ngo Dihn Thuc consecrated so many varied men as bishops because he saw a desperation to continue the constituted evangelic traditions. That was the reason the SSPX was formed, the reason why later the SSPV came into existence, and later the CMRI. All have their growing pains, all have their good and bad. Let us focus on the good that they do, for they all are Catholic and provide something the modern conciliar church of Vatican II cannot do: preach, practice and administer unadulterated Catholic truth and the true sacraments. Given their circumstances, would you have done differently? Not if you realized the great Deposit of the Faith was under attack and had the chance to help save it and, by doing so, countless confused souls during this time of "diabolical disorientation."
As Father Carl is laid to rest, we echo the words he prayed throughout his priestly life and truly pray that "with the sign of faith" he may now "rest in Christ" and find that everlasting "place of refreshment, light, and peace."
Memento etiam, Domine, famulorum famularumque tuarem Pater Carlus et familias ejus, qui nos praecesserunt cum signo fidei, et dormiunt in somno pacis, Ipsis, Domine, et omnibus in Christo quiescentibus, locum refrigerii lucis et pacis, ut indulgeas, deprecamur: Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen. (Commemoration of the Dead in the Canon of the Holy Mass)
Father Paul Trinchard, S.T.L.
Today in the Crescent City, so ravaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, a great celebration occurs. No, there won't be any marching bands, no gumbo or Bourbon Street festivities. Major Ray Nagin won't be there, neither will FEMA, or any other authorities of this world. But present, as He is at every True Holy Sacrifice of the Mass from the Apostolic time and, as set in stone by the infallible, dogmatic Council of Trent and codified by Pope Saint Pius V, is the greatest Authority one could ever hope to be present: Jesus Christ, Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity for in the private residence of Father Paul Trinchard at his specially constructed oratory altar he will say the Holy Mass as he does every day either alone or a handful of faithful. Yet, today is special because it marks his 40th year that he has been privileged to be an alter Christus in confecting the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of the Word Incarnate. Why, one might ask, is his 40th Anniversary Mass in his home and not in a chapel or a church where many can attend. That's what he so hoped for, but remember what Saint Basil the Great said: "Who has lost and who has won in the struggle - the one who keeps the premises [buildings] or the one who keeps the Faith? The Faith obviously."
You see, Alfred Hughes is the archpotentate of New Orleans and he keeps the premises or at least it's that way when your diocese is not in bankruptcy. One would hope and pray that such a reasonable and reverent request from a true, dedicated priest would gladly be fulfilled. But not in Hughes' neighborhood. He curtly replied in writing to Fr. Trinchard:
"I am advised you are seeking to celebrate the Latin Trindentine Mass at St. Mary's Assumption for your upcoming anniversary. I have decided that offering the Latin Tridentine Mass at St. Patrick's Church in New Orleans is sufficient for the faithful..."
That was it, this pint-sized potentate (if you saw him you'd agree) has "decided" that the souls of his flocks are not important. Further, he has "decided" that a worthy priest's greatest wish is not worthy of serious consideration. Now if he asked Hughes if he could concelebrate in the Cathedral of St. Louis the Novus Ordo rite, no doubt Hughes would have invited the Mayor and every other non-Catholic authority for his own pride and ego in using Fr. Trinchard as bait for furthering the "abomination of desolation." No doubt about it! Or if someone, oh, say a Lutheran or a Methodist or a Buddhist or Hindu or even a Muslim or snake worshipers asked to use St. Mary's Assumption to hold a service because they needed a larger facility and, in the spirit of ecumenism, would be honored to hold their non-Catholic services in that once consecrated church, do you really think Hughes would have said no? Considering the track records of his fellow potentates from sea to shining sea, as well as the conciliar popes who catered to every one of those listed above, you know the answer to that. There is only one group these conciliar poobahs say no to consistently: those who are truly Catholic! Yes, Traditional Catholics hear "no" more often than a salesman or a telemarketer.
Father writes in his own words about this, which he titles
On June 7, 2006, I celebrate the 40th anniversary of my “Holy-Ordered Ordination.” This is the day I received my Holy Ghost empowerment and God-given duty to celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for the living and the dead (according to the Canonized Mass Missal specified by the dogmatic decrees of Pope Saint Pius V and the dogmatic Council of Trent).
I was ordained in New Orleans to celebrate the Canonized Latin Mass by Archbishop Philip Hannan on “6/7/66.” Since then, my greatest privilege and my gravest duty has been to re-present (make present again) in the mystical/sacramental way, God’s greatest Gift and man’s only necessity. In the social realm, I thank God and others for a most successful priestly apostolate. Well over twenty million copies of my articles, books, pamphlets and tapes have been read, heard or seen.
However, I especially thank God for my conversion back to celebrating the Canonized Latin Mass that I was authentically ordained to say. Since 1990, I have, in spirit and in truth, become a true member of the Latin Rite Patriarchate. One of my fondest “old age wishes” is to celebrate the year of the 40th anniversary of my Canonized Latin Rite Ordination by saying a Canonized Latin Rite Mass over the tomb of my great uncle, Fr. Clemente Umbach, C.S.S.R.
Nec Ibi Quidem (Not Even Here)
However, a dark shadow falls on my ambition. The Archdiocese of New Orleans forbade me to rent (the “rentable”) mothballed Church of St. Mary’s Assumption to celebrate the Mass for which I was ordained 40 years ago.
This church means a lot to me. My great uncle said Mass there, as well as, died in its rectory. My relatives and I have attended many Masses and novenas in this church. Most significantly, for me as a priest, my great uncle Fr. Clemente Umbach, C.S.S.R., is buried in its sanctuary next to Blessed Seelos, C.S.S.R. My mother was the first baby Father Umbach baptized and I was very close to his surviving saintly unmarried sisters, my great-aunts, during my childhood (until their deaths). My great-uncle was a saintly Redemptorist priest who died in New Orleans a few years after his early ordination. His order’s “Redemptorist icon” a picture of Our Lady of Perpetual Help (which my great aunts gave my mother) hangs above the altar in my own house where I celebrate the Canonized Latin Mass Liturgy.
Mit Brennender Sorge
With heavy sorrow, I am forced to acknowledge that, in general, the church establishment appears to hate the true Mass. Let’s pray for these ruthless God-haters. Pray that this cause of my and others’ “brennender sorge” may be more rapidly removed than the Nazi regime which prompted the writing of the original Mit Brennender Sorge of Pope Pius XII. To us, militantly Catholic priests, as well as, to the priests of his own Canonized Latin Rite Mass, the priests of his Latin Rite Patriarchate, Pope Pius XII addressed the following command and commendation:
“You must not abandon in the slightest degree the proclamation, the vindication and the courageous defence of the truth, and its frank application to the realities of your environment. The first and the most obvious gift of charity which the Priest owes to the world in which he lives is to serve the truth, the whole truth, and to unmask and refute error in whatever form or disguise or false colours it may present itself. Failure here would be not only a betrayal of God and of your holy vocation; it would also be a sin against the welfare of your own people.”
Encyclical Mit brennender Sorge, par. 44, March 14, 1937
Quo Primum Tempore
My Masses during and after my 40th anniversary will include the special intention for the conversion of Newchurch’s clergy to authentic Catholicism. Shortly after my conversion, MAETA [a 501 C (3) non-profit corporation] was established. It is dedicated to witnessing to the Apostolic Catholic Church (as opposed to the episcopal Newchurch which began in the 1960's). Also, I ask you to join me in contributing to MAETA which will continue in existence after my demise.
I invite you to join us in praying and working:
- 1) that “Rome” may once again become the APOSTOLIC See (as such, holding “fast and true to” Apostolic faith and morals (especially, Apostolic liturgical morals);
- 2) that the pope and his bishops may convert to the Canonized Latin Ordinal and Mass;
- 3) that, thereby, they may become one with the faithful of the Latin Rite Patriarchate from Apostolic time to the end-times;
- 4) that the present pope may have the courage of that pope who once held his “pre-papal office” (the head of the Holy Office), Pope Saint Pius V. In the spirit of Trent and of Pope Saint Pius V, may the present pope courageously restore the Latin Rite Ordinal and Mass to his Latin Rite Patriarchate.
Let us pray and work for these goals to materialize quo primum tempore (at the earliest possible time). Pray and work for these and similar causes. This is our great privilege. This is our gravest duty. As a Latin Rite Priest, in a special way, I pray for alleged Latin Rite popes, bishops and priests to convert to Catholicism, to become and function as honorable clergymen of the Latin Rite Patriarchate. Only by doing so can they avoid the eternal wrath dogmatically assured them by Pope Saint Pius V:
“We determine and order by this Our decree, to be valid in perpetuity, that never shall anything be added to, omitted from or changed in this Missal…Specifically, do We warn all persons in authority, of whatever rank…and command them, as a matter of strict obedience , never to use or permit any ceremonies or Mass prayers other than the ones contained in this Missal…At no time in the future can a priest, whether secular or order priest, ever be forced to use any other way of saying Mass. And in order once and for all to preclude any scruples of conscience and fear of ecclesiastical penalties and censures, We declare herewith that it is by virtue of Our Apostolic Authority that We decree and prescribe that this present order and decree of Ours is to last in perpetuity, and never at a future date can it be revoked or amended legally. And, if, nevertheless, anyone would ever dare attempt any action contrary to this order of Ours, handed down for all times, let him know that he has incurred the wrath of Almighty God, and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.
Quo Primum Tempore, Pope Saint Pius V, July 19, 1570, italics added
UNITING WITH THE HOLY SACRIFICE
Today, it often happens that Catholics are unable to hear Mass even on Sundays. Their bodily presence is excused. However, each of us should unite in spirit to the Divine Liturgy. Kneeling or sitting before a Crucifix, be transported in spirit before an altar where Divine Liturgy is being validly celebrated. Pray the Holy Mass, God’s Saving Will Realized on earth as it is in Heaven.
ACT OF UNION WITH DIVINE LITURGY
Heavenly Father, I unite with Thy Christ-priest who offers Thee Thine adorable Son. Thereby, I am offered in, into and through Christ, my only Saviour. Through Him, I adore, I praise and I thank Thee, imploring Thy mercy, invoking Thine assistance and presenting Thee the homage and adoration due Thee as God and Saviour.
Apply to my soul, I beseech Thee, O merciful Jesus, Thine infinite merits: apply them also to those for whom I particularly wish to pray. I desire to communicate spiritually: that Thy Blood may purify, Thy Flesh strengthen, and Thy Spirit sanctify me. God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, Thou hast died for me through Thy Divine Liturgy. Ever increasingly, may I come to live through, in and into Thine Holy Sacrifice now and eternally. Amen.
Father Trinchard is one of the many who realized the Novus Ordo was a dead end, a withered branch. As his secretary Vera Muller wrote in the MAETA press release, "Despite his Holy Orders to celebrate the Canonized Latin Mass for the living and the dead, Father Trinchard celebrated Holy Mass only on his ordination day.
Thereafter, the Novus Ordo Rite was imposed upon priests. He did not say another Canonized Latin Mass until his “conversion” back to this Holy Mass in the early 1990’s. Since then, Father states that he has become “in spirit and in truth, a true member of the Latin Rite Patriarchate, saying only the Canonized Latin Mass.”
The word "imposed" is an excellent choice of verbs for that is what happened to every consecrated sacerdote in the aftermath of Vatican II. Few realized they had a choice and few realized that Holy Mother Church had already overruled Giovanni Montini and that no priest had the "choice" to say any other Mass than the Canonized Latin Mass - the Traditional Latin Mass of the Apostles - the Immemorial Mass of and for All Ages! This is how the confusion spread. This is how without truly, and I mean truly knowing the Faith, caused 95% of ordained priests to blindly obey
an order that was from the outset anathema sit. Do we blame Fr. Trinchard, or any of the other priests who have since rejected the conciliar church's Protestant-Masonic and, yes, pagan service totally stripped of any sacrificial aspect? How can we without blaming ourselves. We were all duped, even Archbishop Lefebvre and Archbishop Thuc as well as Cardinal Ottaviani and Cardinal Siri and Cardinal Oddi. They all signed off on the Vatican II documents but later realized their error. So also Fr. Trinchard, who since then has worked overtime in bulking up the true Church Militant publishing, through MAETA, several books, pamphlets and audio tapes. Most notable are The Abbot & Me On Liturgy, The Mass That Made Padre Pio, New Mass in Light of the Old, New Age New Mass, Pray the Holy Mass, The Mystery of Faith, Latin Mass Prayers Explained, God’s Word, Apostasy Within and his latest work New Mass Conclusively Invalid.
It is true and "with the greatest sorrow" that Fr. Trinchard will not be able to honor his great uncle, but when you really think about it, it is another triumph for traditional Catholicism for Father would not compromise. As he says his private Mass on this special day, however, he should be encouraged by what Saint Athanasius, the Apostle of Tradition, encouraged, "You have the bishops against you; that proves that they are all against the Church." Take heart, Father Paul. Take heart, dear true priests across this land and throughout the world. Your efforts are not in vain. We are the Church Militant and with you as our examples of courage in the face of adversity, we shall overcome - we shall echo the words of St. Basil, "the ordinances which have been preserved in the churches from old time until now may not be lost in our days. Rouse yourselves, brethren, seeing them now seized upon by aliens." Yes, St. Mary's Assumption is in the hands of the aliens. Pray for the day it is liberated and reconsecrated and that someday, perhaps for his golden anniversary as a priest, Fr. Paul can say Mass over the tomb of his great uncle. Until that time, we provide the encouragement which he prays everyday in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass just before the Commemoration of the Dead in beseeching the Father on our behalf:
Supra quae propitio ac sereno vultu respicere digneris: et accepta habere, sicuti accepta habere dignatus es munera pueri Tui iusti Abel, et sacrificium patriarchae nostri Abrahae: et quod Tibi obtulit summus sacerdos Tuus Melchisedech, sanctum Sacrificium, immaculatam Hostiam."
Upon which vouchsafe to look with a propitious and serene countenance, and to accept them, as Thou wert graciously pleased to accept the gifts of Thy just servant Abel, and the sacrifice of our patriarch Abraham, and that which Thy high priest Melchisedech offered to Thee, -- a holy Sacrifice, and unspotted Victim.
If only the Traditional movement had more priests like Fr. Paul and Fr. Carl. While the various traditional seminaries are ordaining more priests in percentage to the Novus Ordo establishment, still there are so few priests and we are losing the gems that kept the Faith alive, no matter their journey to Tradition. It is time the traditional groups realize that we must be united, that we must stop our bickering about "opinions" and that means the issue of sedevacantism vs. non-sedevacantism and work together on what all are in concert with: The Faith and the Sacraments. This includes the Traditional Latin Mass. If a priest is being truly Catholic, faithful to all the tenets of the Faith, practices what he preaches, and is bringing light to those in the darkness when the Church is truly in eclipse, then it's enough for every Catholic to accept and encourage, not to demean, but to support spiritually, vocally and financially. They don't have the spigot of dirty money being poured into the conciliar dioceses and all the garbage that has clogged the drains of souls; they only have the widow's mite and simple truth. Let's help supplement those meager offerings of money not so our Traditional priests can live in luxury as their counterparts in the conciliar church place so much importance on, but so that they have adequate medical insurance, that they have safe and dependable wheels so they can more readily travel to underground mission chapels to bring the light of Faith in a world of darkness. It must be done if we are to survive; it must be done if the true Faith is to be survive; it must be done if souls are to survive; it must be done because we are in the gravest crisis Holy Mother Church has ever faced. It is a time of emergency; a time when we take a few moments to give proper tributes in this time of Epikeia.
Michael Cain, editor, The Daily Catholic
June 7, 2006
vol 16, no. 145