The New Bishop has Confirmed the Suppression:
Posted by Joseph Ostermeir on 9/18/16
Preface: I’ve decided to share the Diocesan Memo since: 1) it’s an official public announcement 2) there’s no evident reason this will actually cause harm to the Society’s future. 3) it concerns the future of our Local Church and Latin Mass communities, 4) it’s objectively a suppression of traditional Catholicism in the diocese.
* Fr Ripperger asks not to contact the office of the bishop at this time.
[Nonetheless, the Most Reverend Bishop says on His Excellency’s facebook:]
Bishop David Konderla
I receive a significant number of messages and requests via Facebook messenger. My page, along with the Diocese of Tulsa’s other social media outlets, is run by a staff member who cannot respond to questions and comments intended for me. If you need to reach me, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you and God bless.
This Communique came just one day after Laramie Hirsch and I released our blog posts that went viral last Sunday (23,000 views), reporting the shutdown of the Society of the Most Sorrowful Mother–Latin Mass Society of Exorcists priests founded by Fr. Chad Ripperger.
Other bloggers have reported the story: Eponymous Flower, Steve Skojec, Church Militant TV.
The Tulsa Chancery has distributed this official, public Memo for Catholics to read, which I likewise share below, with commentary and some info about the Society’s history.
Reading the announcement, did you notice what it does not say? It conveniently and tellingly gives absolutely no explanation as to why this Priestly Society was actually shut down. It alludes to the Society not fitting into the “pastoral life of the diocese” (folks, sounds to me like code for “you guys are a bunch of weirdos”).
Bureaucratese. A Non-Answer Answer. Decoding the non-response, this is how it will likely be interpreted:
Bishop Konderla is suppressing the traditional Exorcist Society because a) they are exorcists who b) say exclusively the Traditional Latin Mass. This is the first act reversing the traditional works of Bishop Slattery (Tulsa bishop from 1995-2016).
The “Francis Effect” in Tulsa:
Do you all recall the online reports about newly-elected Pope Francis’ suppression of the Latin Mass in the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate (FFI)? Rorate Coeli This was in the wake of Pope Benedict XVI’s retirement, after he issued Summorum Pontificum which granted all priests the right to say the Latin Mass. Can you see how this dynamic is being played out at the level of the Local Church?
The Canonical Question:
The Announcement claims the Society had not been “canonically established.”
Well, Tulsa Presbyteral Council, Excellency Bishop Konderla, what on Earth was Bishop Slattery doing then when he publicly erected the Society during a Pontifical High Mass in his cathedral, on March 27th, 2015????? It was not just a canonical act, it was a moral act of a bishop. Bishop Slattery, QUO”began the work of founding the Society of the Most SorrowfulMother, a semi-hermetical community of priests dedicated to exorcism work. On March 27th, 2015, the Commemoration of the Seven Sorrows, Bishop Edward Slattery celebrated a Solemn Pontifical Mass at the Cathedral of the Holy Family in Tulsa as a celebration of the official founding of The Society of the Sorrowful Mother as a society of Apostolic Life of Diocesan Right.”
Steve Skojec over at One Peter Five says:
“Fr. Ripperger’s society had a defect in their canonical status and were under review by a new bishop…”
Some More Information about the Society:
> Bishop Slattery actively worked on the Society’s foundation since 2011. He erected it in March, 2015. It was the act of a bishop.
> The Priests have been working full-time providing spiritual direction, counsel–and when necessary prayers of exorcism–to many, many people suffering terribly from spiritual issues.
> These Priests have lived a quiet, semi-contemplative life, in a an actual monastery they established in a very rural setting, far from the city.
> Many major donors have helped the Doloran Fathers.
> They were not suppressed for any impropriety, if you read the praising language that concludes the letter. Ironically, this positive-sounding letter helps protect these priests if they try to find another diocese.
> Fr. David Konderla of Austin, Texas was ordained bishop this summer for the Tulsa diocese. Only two months later, last week, he suppressed the Doloran Fathers, just a few days before traveling to Rome for a week-long conference which trains newly ordained bishops.
* Disclaimer: I am not a priest nor member of the Society. They have absolutely no knowledge of my identity nor involvement in this blog. Fr. Ripperger continues to request not contacting the bishop’s office at this time.