Skip to comments.St. Anthony of Padua (West Orange, NJ) UPDATE!!!
Posted on 12/26/2004 5:43:59 PM PST by csbyrnes84
If anyone was following the situation at St. Anthony's Latin Mass Chapel in West Orange a month ago, there have been some new developments recently. Fr. Perricone is still the Priest of the Chapel and he now has a second Priest, Fr. Gabriel, helping him.
Two important new developments at St. Anthony's are: 1. The auditorium is being renamed "Fr. Wickens Hall" 2. Archbishop Myers wrote a letter to the parishoners of St. Anthony's.
Here's what it says in the bulletin about the dedication of the hall.
-- In Memoriam Father Paul A. Wickens
On Saturday, January 15, 2005, at 10 AM Father Perricone will offer a Solemn High Requiem Mass in memory of Father Paul Wickens. After Mass the parishoners of Saint Anthony's are invited to a lunch in our auditorium to meet our new Pastor, Father John Perricone. Fr. Perricone will dedicate our auditorium as Father Wickens Hall. Please circle the 15th of January and we hope to see you there. --
Archdiocese of Newark
Office of the Archbishop
Most Reverend John J. Myers
December 21, 2004
My Dear Brothers and Sisiters in Christ,
At this time of year, when our minds quite naturally turn to sharing and celebration, we gather in worship to celebrate the gift that God, Our Father, has sent: the Savior, born this day. He, the true light that enlightens everyone, has come into teh world to share God's life with us.
This Christmas is especially joyful. Your evident embracing of communion with the Archdiocese is a gift. We are an Archdiocese of many traditions and devotions. Your special and very deep commitment to the faith is another sign to the world that this loal Church is, indeed, a vital and strong part of the universal Church, a sign of community, and of Communion.
How fitting that we celebrate our unity during this Year of the Eucharist that Our Holy Father has recently declared. This Christmas season is a fitting opportunity for you, for me, and for all people of the Archdiocese to proclaim Christ as the salvation of the whole world.
Yet amid the rejoicing, there is a sense of loss. Father Paul Wickens, whose generous care had long nourished you for many, years will be missed not only by the people of Saint Anthony of Padua, but also by many within this local Church of Newark. His service will endure as part of the fabric of Saint Anthony of Padua Chapel, and it is our prayer that he be granted eternal rest. I hope you will find in Father John Perricone many of the qualities that Father Wickens so ably demonstrated.
May the Lord bless you today and all days. May this Christmas season be filled with joy, peace and brotherhood.
With warmest good wishes for aholy, healthy, and blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year, I remain,
Sincerely in the Lord,
Most Reverend John J. Myers
Archbishop of Newark
Did Archbishop Myers attend Fr. Wickens' funeral Mass?
Considering that 100% of the previous threads posted on this subject have been pulled, what leads you to think this one won't get pulled?
One can hope and pray!
I believe Father Wickens's funeral mass was said by Fr. Zendejas who is a priest of the SSPX. The Archbishop was not in attendance to the best of my knowledge.
Well Fr. Gabriel is a former Franciscan. He formed a diocesan Traditional Franscican Order in the Diocese of Scranton, but the Bishop eventually supressed the order.
Now there was an actual Franciscan at St. Anthony's a couple of weeks back, I forget his name, but he is a Franciscan from the Diocese of New York who Fr. Perricone converted to Traditionalism. This Franciscan only says the latin mass now, but he previously was a very very Liberal Catholic.
They had a High Solemn mass for Christmas's Midnight mass, and I suspect they will use the same format for the High Requiem mass. At the Christmas mass Fr. Perricone was the celebrant, Fr. Gabriel was the Deacon, and they had a "straw" deacon as the sub-deacon, so he was a layman who knew the rubrics and responses.
BTW Mike how are things going at Jersey City? Is the Bishop still thinking about closing up Holy Rosary?
Well in that situation I'd probably check out the Society Chapel if there is nothing else available for those other weeks. Msgr. Perl of the Ecclesia Dei commision did say that Society masses fulfill the Sunday Obligation.
NO COMMENT. (speaks volumes)
Fr. Gabriel was the deacon. The subdeacon has helped out at Holy Rosary and is usually at OLF in Pequannock.
Fr. Gabriel was one of the founders of the Servants Minor of St. Francis in Scranton, PA. It was a traditional Franciscan order that has been supressed. Fr. Gabriel is now a diocesan priest.
At first glance it might seem strange. In Catholic Europe of the Middle Ages every Church would toll its bells on Christmas Eve. From 11:00pm till 11:59pm Church bells tolled as though for a funeral. On Christmas Eve? Think for a minute and its makes perfect sense. Mother Church was announcing the end, the "death", of Satan's reign. The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity dazzles the universe as He shines forth through the flesh given Him by the Virgin. From that moment on, the Word made flesh would be the Light that no Darkness could conquer.
Sometimes, though not often, the rich joy of the supernatural wonder of Christmas is matched by the natural joys of God's bounty. Christmas 2004 is one of those times. I see it so very clearly in my arrival here on December 1st. I see it in the exceptional Catholics that I have found at St. Anthony since I have come. All of these unique Christmas joys can only have one cause.
This year God allowed us to bear the burden of the passing of a great priest. Father Wickens generously accepted the kind of death God deigned to send him. Each torment that came with his awful disease he transformed into petitions to Our Lord for his beloved St. Anthony. Because he was a priest's priest, he realized this would be the finest gift he could leave his Catholic flock. This is the reason for our special cheer.
Lesser men might think a pastor's legacy is in the treasure left to his parish. Some might believe it to be the buildings he constructed. Still others the happy times they would always remember. All these are good, but not the best. A priest, after the heart of Christ, desires for his parish not just something merely good, but the best. Any priest worthy of being called Father knows that is his suffering. It was Christ's finest gift to us. The priest is alter Christus, so it must similarly be his. The suffering of a simple priest joined to that of the Sovereign High Priest guarantees avalanches of blessings. Be prepared.
Father Wickens closed his eyes in death secure that he had bequeathed his parish the finest he could give. His priestly oblation will always surround St. Anthony's like a high wall. Though some may try to sally forth against it, that high wall will repel them. St. Anthony of Padua is a parish richly endowed. No one need ever fear that the endowment might be exhausted, because it sits invincibly upon the very heart of God.
You must never forget these profound Catholic mysteries. Especially be mindful of them when the occasional cloud comes our way. That will be the time to remember that we are marked by a signal grace, won by a singular priest. No cloud can ever compete with that. How grateful to God I am, that He has chosen me to lead you more deeply into that victory.
Thank you to all of you for making my Christmas this year so merry. Thank you, Father Wickens, for providing all of us with future Christmas after Christmas, year after year, farther can our eyes can see. Now we know why priests are called our Fathers. For they never settle in giving us anything but the best.
Why is it that wherever tradition is found in the church you'll find our supposed leadership making every effort to stomp it out?
I think the parishoners there are in for a rough ride. The naive will fall into line and swallow the diocesan BS while the rest will need to examine their reasons for supporting Father Wickens in the first place.
I heard that they were supressed because they were too "successful" spiritually and being right in Scranton were in the bishop's face, so to speak. I guess it tweaked his conscience and rather than changing his ways he just supressed the order. ;-(
And a magnificent mass it was...
Thanks, and a merry Christmas to you!