Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Adopt a priest

The funny thing about this video is that in France, the priest shown would be considered definitively conservative and, well, rather un-French. Traddies in France wear the cassock; soixante-huitards wear a grey suit with a blue polo shirt and, sometimes, a cross on the jacket lapel. But the 'clergyman' dress, so familiar in anglophone countries, in France is a sort of code for someone who isn't exactly a traddie, but definitely distances himself from most of his ageing confreres.



Pelerin said...

Has anyone else noticed that compared to 7 or 8 years ago more French clergy in interviews and discussions on the TV channel kto now are seen 'en clergyman?' There seem to be far fewer featured in shirt and tie than there used to be.

I enjoy watching the interviews with various French Bishops about their dioceses and it does seems to be true you can tell by what they wear how friendly they are towards the Traditional liturgy before they start speaking!

Pelerin said...

The video shown seems to have been put out by the various dioceses in Normandy.

One of the dioceses, Evreux, has been described as a 'catholic desert' in which there are only 84 priests for 600,000 people. Only 48 of these are active and of these 48 only 25 are less than 60 years old according to statistics given on a French catholic blog. So the area is desperately short of vocations.

By coincidence this week the Bishop interviewed on kto is of Evreux. I watched it hoping to learn the latest news about Thiberville - where the parishioners desperately tried to keep their popular Priest who was removed by the Bishop. However the nearest the interviewer got to asking about this was saying that 'It has not always been easy in your diocese.'

Thiberville had had their Priest for nearly 25 years and has been described as the most vibrant parish in the diocese with 3 Masses each Sunday always packed out. It also had well attended weekday Masses. He celebrated both the NO (ad orientem) and the EF. His Sunday EF used to have a congregation of around 100. Now he has gone and there is reported to be one Sunday Mass with 30 people attending - 10 real parishioners and 20 from elsewhere. The EF was later cancelled by the Bishop and according to reports the once vibrant parish has collapsed.

I have tried unsuccessfully to find updates on the saga of Thiberville and was disappointed that it was not mentioned on the kto programme. Obviously the interviewer would not wish to embarrass the Bishop but there must be many watching who wish to know what has happened since those scenes when the Bishop was booed and whistled at in the church at Thiberville and the parishioners lost their much loved Priest.