We earn 8% in referral fees when you shop Amazon through our link. We make it easy! Click to learn how.
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!

Progress toward our March expenses ($28,792 to go):
$35,000.00 $6,207.70
82% 18%
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.

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

Recent Catholic Commentary

To talk of many things 8 hours ago
The stumbling block of morality on Self-Deprecation Day 9 hours ago
Opening Ourselves to Meaning and Purpose March 5
A thin-skinned Vatican spokesman harms his own standing March 5
Pope Francis prevails in Round I of battle for Vatican reform March 5

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis to address Congress in joint session in September CWN - February 5