Challenge Grant: Our Boosters will match donations up to $45,000. We have $41,060 to go. Please donate!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Ex-priest starts new congregation; newspaper coverage confuses readers

Catholic World News - August 20, 2012

An article in the Charlotte Observer, on a former Catholic priest who has started his own religious congregation, illustrates the dangers of relying on religious reporting from secular outlets.

Tom Sanford, who left the priesthood “more than a quarter-century ago,” recently decided to open his own church, to welcome Catholics who are unhappy with recent changes in the Church.

The Observer story explained: “The final straw came early this year: the church’s decision to reinstate the original 1963 English translation of the Mass.” That single sentence contains several noteworthy errors:

The story continues to misinform readers by saying that the ceremony performed by Tom Sanford is not a Mass. Since he is an ordained priest, the ceremony is in all probability valid, albeit illicit. A spokesman for the Charlotte diocese explains that it is seriously wrong for a Catholic to “knowingly go to a Mass that’s celebrated by someone who doesn’t have the authority.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($128,907 to go):
$150,000.00 $21,092.70
86% 14%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Aug. 20, 2012 6:14 PM ET USA

    Maybe when the USCCB is finished expounding on global warming and the social budget of the US government, they might publish some press guidelines for verifying sources on stories involving the Catholic Church.

  • Posted by: Ut videam - Aug. 20, 2012 4:52 PM ET USA

    The reporter may also have been (erroneously) referring to the 1964 or 1966 "transitional Missals," which began implementing Sacrosanctum Concilium by introducing vernacular into the 1962 Missal and (in the 1966) omitting some prayers or making them optional.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Cardinal Kasper's nose is growing again October 18
Challenge Grant Begins as Synod Ends October 17
What's wrong with this Synod, IV: Unprepared for marriage October 17
No, mainstream religious orders aren't attracting vocations as fast as younger traditional orders October 17
The Synod: Is the sky falling? October 17

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Key synod report calls for 'gradualism' in Church response to irregular family situations CWN - October 13
Cardinal Parolin: UN must protect innocents from Islamic State CWN - September 30
Synod of Bishops opens with Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica CWN - October 6