Father Blute is a priest of the Society of Saint Pius X in India. Born in 1963, ordained in 1994, he readily told “DICI” the story of the serious events which shook the South of the country, to the deafening silence of all the media.

Situation of Catholicism in India

1. Nagerkoil has the densest population of Catholics in Southern India, excluding certain areas of Kerala. The Catholic population is estimated to be 36%. St. Francis-Xavier himself converted them. They are much more devout than Catholics of other regions, and have a very traditional mindset. Their old churches were built by the people ages ago, and a committee of elected leaders traditionally administered all the temporal concerns of the parish.

2. The clergy of this Catholic bastion are the absolute worst in India. Pride, arrogance, unchastity and greed, are their most commonly noted virtues. With vigor they imposed Modernist teaching and practices upon a most unwilling people.

3. The most important work of the Bishop of this region is to sweep away the administrative committees of lay people, and impose the “parish council” of his own construction. Events of the past ten years have proven that the main purpose of this substitution is to consolidate all the wealth and fund-raising machinery in the hands of the Bishop. One by one, he has coerced the parishes into accepting it. Many cruel methods were used to accomplish this. One of the most effective was interdict… removing the parish priest, and refusing the sacraments, especially Marriage, Confirmation and Mass. Those communities, which persisted, were either bribed into submission, or crushed with the help of the police.

4. Many parishes were in an uproar over communion in the hand, women in the sanctuary, and of course the public crimes of the priests.

Having “set the stage”, I can speak about the events of this summer in Ramanpudur, Holy Family Parish.

13 June, Sunday. The representatives of Holy Family Parish come to the SSPX priory, and after a cordial meeting, go away, seeming pleased.

19 July, Monday. The representatives of St. Lourdes Church, Punnianagar (adjacent to Holy Family and in league with them) come and explicitly ask us to take over the spiritual ministry of their church, because the Bishop has just refused to take care of them until they submit to his decree about the parish council. The promised date of the takeover is Wednesday, 21 July.

21 July, Wednesday. The people are rounded up by the police and browbeaten for four hours to make an agreement with the Bishop, “or ELSE!”

24 July, Saturday. The committee from Punnainagar comes and shows the letter they gave to the Bishop ending all dealings with him, and accepting the SSPX priests as their pastors. A surprise Mass was scheduled for 4 AM the following morning, a Sunday. Before they arrive at their homes, they are betrayed: the President had given the keys to the police, who then locked the church and gave the keys to the Bishop. It’s a hopeless situation.

25 July, Sunday. Father Pancras goes to Punnainagar to celebrate the Mass: Surprise! The Church is locked and the police are guarding it. He then goes to Asaripalam for the normal Mass at our SSPX chapel. After the Asperges, a fine car with well-dressed people pulls up and unloads. These representatives of Holy Family Church attend the Mass piously, and afterwards they request the SSPX to send a priest to their Church for morning Mass on Monday.

26 July, Monday. 9AM morning Mass. The people prepare a great celebration at a shrine of St. James, where Fr. Blute goes and celebrates a Sung Mass with the well-coordinated altar service of Hostel Boys, now experts in the liturgy. The crowd of 300 is quite edified. They also sing very well, remembering the Kyriale from their youth.

27 July, Tuesday. SSPX is now welcomed and housed in the Rectory of Holy Family parish. The first of several meetings takes place between District officers and the Bishop’s representatives and the representatives of Holy Family, to try to work out a solution. The defense: the Bishop definitively abandoned us, so we are free to choose the SSPX fathers as our pastors. Outside, 300 women pray the Rosary. At the church, we make a Novena to St. Anthony.

28 July, Wednesday. The people of Punnainagar march on the local office of justice, demanding the keys to their church.

29 July, Thursday. Punnainagar is beginning to boil, and the men are contemplating an uprising. They are calmed by the people of Ramanpudur, with whom they have forged an unbreakable alliance to bring the Latin Mass to their churches. Accusations and warnings appear in all the newspapers.

30 July, Friday. A traditional friend and politico approaches the Magistrate, the highest official in the district, requesting support for the people. His answer: “There are 42 parishes in exactly the same state as Holy Family, and if I get involved, I’ll not have time for any other work.”

1 August, Sunday of the Maccabees. A solemn high mass is scheduled for the first time in Holy Family Church in forty years. Opposition by the Bishop is rumored. Police arrive 4:30 AM. Our priests, Frs. Pancras & Michael, guard the altar until time for the Solemn Mass. The supporters of the Bishop arrive at the gate, a paltry ill-meaning crowd of about 35 people. 500 people meet them at the gate, blocking their entry. All remain to listen to Fr. Blute’s sermon. Dismayed, they go home. After a glorious Mass, the people gather around the Church for a feast, prepared compliments of two wealthy businessmen to joyfully celebrate the day’s events.

4 August Wednesday. Bishop Leon Dharmaraj calls all the diocesan employees to his house and his Vicars cajole and threaten them, forcing them all to sign a blank paper, and urging them to go the following day to the Magistrate to protest, and to bring 15 family members. The teachers of the diocesan schools go home late, shaken and anxious. Holy Family Parish complains to the Department of Education at this abuse of authority. The Hindus who watch and listen with awe to the Requiem Procession and Mass that morning refute vicious rumors about schism, etc. “Even if these priests were great sinners, I am convinced by their prayers they are holy men.”

5 August Thursday. A fateful day, a judgment is to be made by the District official, the “RDO”. The committee goes to argue their case, and our 400 pious faithful, men and women, go to kneel outside and pray the Rosary. The teachers union provides 40 partisans of the Bishop. The official orders the crowd dispersed: the Holy Family people immediately approach and ask for Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, and adore for 5 hours, with uninterrupted prayers and songs. After the delegates arrive, there is a loud public meeting with speeches galore in favor of unity, the Latin Mass and the SSPX. Anyone who inadvertently said, “Our parish priest came and.” was shouted down by cries of, “Not our parish priest– FORMER parish priest!!” Likewise, the blunder, “Our bishop has….” was drowned by, “NOT OURS!” The District officers want a compromise. The parish representatives say, “Not without a meeting of the whole parish”. “Hold it tomorrow” comes the reply. “We can’t. People can only come on Sunday”. So the meeting to determine the will of the people is postponed until Sunday. However, the Bishop’s supporters and the Government people urge, “Can’t you stop that Mass of yours?” “Oh, no, we need our daily Mass”. “Please, if you would just STOP THAT MASS!” (The devil is obviously tormented by this blazing light in the middle of his dark kingdom.)

The same day: In the morning, the former parish priest, Fr. Ladislaus, creeps into the Rectory, and surprises Fr. Blute and Fr. Pancras at breakfast. He introduces himself as Fr. Benjamin. He is offered a seat, and soon he says, “Actually, I’m the parish priest here”. So we cordially speak about why we are here, and why we were not going to go, and how he had best go and speak to the Committee, if he must. He just smirks at us. A security guard come and ignominiously walks him to the gate. Immediately he goes with his friends to the Police station and files a complaint of attempted murder: by Fr. Blute, Pancras, and three absent committee members. If this is the quality of the clergy in Ramanpudur, I, for one, feel not just justified in coming to their aid, but also positively bound by duty.

6 August, Friday. Another 5 hour adoration. An illegal “stay-order” is filed in court forbidding the SSPX Fathers from entering the church.

8 August, Sunday. The parish meeting, after some debate, arrives at a plan: to offer some stern conditions for the Bishop to adhere to, if he wants control of Holy Family: Among the conditions: The priest must wear a cassock… do not allow any women in his priory, nor in the sanctuary. No communion in the hand, no women lectors, and above all, no more talk about “Parish Councils”, period. As they expect, the Bishop refuses to sign.

10 August, Tuesday. Tension builds all day. Morning Mass without any disturbance. Evening devotions in honor of St. Anthony are scheduled. At 5:15 PM, vans of people begin arriving and the crowd attempts to enter the church compound. The church bell begins to peal. Crowds of parishioners block the gates. Police provide protection. The crowd grows, on both sides. Hired vans begin arriving from the fisher villages. A crowd of priests, maybe 100, insists on being allowed into the church to offer the Mass. (“Funny”, one man said: “first they refused us the Mass, now they are breaking down the walls and begging us to let them say Mass for us”) The crowd replies, “We have our own priests, thank you! You can go home!” A statue of St. Anthony is brought, and the devotion commences. Then, on the parish side, continuous rosaries, hymns, and prayers. A delegation of priests and sisters go to the official’s office. In his office, Fr. Ladislaus Benjamin protests vehemently, pounding the desk of the august official, and kicking his furniture. Outraged police give him a beating and chuck him out. At the church, the faithful cook a common vat of rice for all to sustain them in their siege. At 10:30 PM, vanloads begin arriving in force.
The priests lie down and block the road. In the allied parishes of Punnainagar (St. Lourdes), Thalaivaipuram, Mel Ramanpudur and others, the bells ring, and call for reinforcements. Crowds of supporters enter by the back way, swelling the parish side to 7,000 people. A general call goes out to all police stations, and vans of police merge with vans of hired Bishop’s men converging on Ramanpudur. Seeing this, the police begin stopping the vans, and let the air out of their tires. Finally, some 1,500 police are in place, preventing the crowd outside from entering the church compound by force. It becomes apparent that the 100 priests are not actually priests, but fishermen dressed in borrowed cassocks. At 2 AM the police charge the crowd with night sticks and disperse them. Without doubt, these are the most dangerous public disturbances in recent history, and it is completely blacked-out by the media: no newspapers, no TV, no radio, no magazine articles. Who arranged that?

Three families, years ago, had left Holy Family Parish to join the Pentecostals. After they saw the True Mass ONCE, they all returned to the Catholic Church. A young man testifies, “With the Tamil Mass, I would only go on Sunday. But since seeing the holiness of this Mass, I rise at 5: 30 am, so I will not miss it.” A man was vociferously denouncing the SSPX priests. Out of curiosity, his wife and daughters attended Sunday Mass. Upon their return, they said, “We don’t know how to answer what you say about these priests, but you must see the Mass.” After attending once, he ceased his denunciations.

August 16. The critical juncture is over. The Bishop bought a judgment from the High Court, in Madras, and obtained rights over the keys of the church. He comes with the police and enters. All the people, including us, flee. With great solemnity, the Bishop celebrates Mass in the very place hallowed by the Tridentine Mass days before: to an empty church. There are 40 local people, and about the same brought by the Bishop in a bus. The normal crowd is 3000!! The people are themselves asking to set up a tent on borrowed land, and have the Latin Mass within 2 weeks. The people of Punnainagar, especially, are bracing for the next onslaught, because they have also rejected the government of the Bishop Leon Dharmaraj (means “Lion King of Virtue” the old women laugh and say Leon Adarmaraj—”Lion king of vice”). Recall that St. Peter says “your adversary the Devil as a roaring Lion goes about seeking whom he may devour.”) So keep praying for us. There is a harvest to be gathered for tradition, and whether it yields 40, 60, or 100 fold depends on our prayers.

It seems as things stand the bishop has wrested control of the church property from the local people, obtaining a judgment in his favor from the local judiciary. It seems that a Trust composed of the local people has always claimed ownership of the property. So the local leaders and the trustees have gone to the town of Madurai to appeal to a higher court to get back the church and associated property. The courts in India are absolutely swamped with property cases and who knows how long – months or years – this appeal will take?

Fr Blute is back at the priory in Palayamkottai drawing up long-term plans for the area. He is optimistic that whatever happens, a new center for Tradition will arise in this area evangelized by St Francis Xavier. At the southern tip of India, it is a fertile stretch of land, full of palm groves, served by both the Northeast and Southwest Monsoons. The people are generally unaware of the crisis in the Church, thinking their woes with the bishop to be a localized affair. Fr Blute says that the Catholic population of the area is very devout in the practice of the Faith.

There was no Traditional Latin Mass celebrated on Assumption Day. The New Mass. said by the local bishop at the Holy Family Church was a flop. Since the local leaders were out of town at Madurai, the people stood firm. Arrangements are being made to celebrate Mass wherever possible in the area, on Sunday 22 August.

August 30, Monday. It seems that the SSPX has settled for a Mass center in the Nagercoil area, now that the bishop has complete control over the church in Ramanpudur. A house with a large walled-in compound has been rented. The altar will be set on the veranda and the faithful will be in the garden on mats. Some hundreds of people can thus be accommodated. Fr. Pancras is already residing in this house that is within easy distance from Ramanpudur and the two neighboring parishes.

We asked Fr Blute a last question:
– How long have you been in India?
– About seven-and-a-half years.
I had already been two-and-a-half years in the Philippines, under Fr. Morgan, when Bishop Fellay, in a roundabout way, asked me how I would feel about a temporary assignment in India. My original 3 months visa was extended six months more, followed by another one year visa, etc, etc, and right now I have a ten-year visa, which is really remarkable. It has been quite a long temporary stay! But I have no regrets, none at all! My feeling is that Jesus Christ has sent me here, by the will of my superiors. I mean, we’re like an army, and if the small foot soldiers don’t hold the part of the line assigned to them, we’ve no hope of victory.


About The Voice Of Bombay's Catholic Laity

Bombay Laity Ezekiel’s Chapter 3 Task as Watchman 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for[b] their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.
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  1. Francis says:

    Shocking. 😦

  2. As far as the Latin Mass issue goes, I personally prefer that the prayers during Holy Mass are in English or the language which the faithful can understand and participate. I still remember the days when the priest would offer Holy Mass with his back to the congregation, and the prayers were in Latin and the congregation would give responses like parrots not understanding what they were saying.
    What I do not agree with is the tweaking about with the prayers during the Holy Mass; Even the Sacred words of the Consecration have been altered. Does this mean that all the previous Consecrations during Holy Mass for so many years are invalid ???? I suppose all this was done just to give the princes of the Church an opportunity to have a holiday in Rome for a so called Council; they had to justify their jaunt to Rome by making these tweaky changes. I wonder how many recall when these same old cronies `tried to tweak the words of the “OUR FATHER”; what a disaster that was; but will these old fogeys learn ???
    In this age of the green revolution I wonder if anyone has bothered to calculate how much money has been WASTED, and trees destroyed, in printing the new books/pamphlets and handouts in the parish Churches. And most important who made the money from all the “RADDI” of the old books etc.
    If the old fogey princes of the Church have to be kept occupied get them to do some constructive work or put them out to pasture; where they can strut about in their fancy designer gowns, enjoy lavish food and booze and die when GOD calls them to answer for all this rot.

    • Deusvicit says:

      To agree with your above posted comment, a good stock of material containing both old and new missals have gone to waste. A lot of excuses to start councils have been nothing but luxurious holidays to the Cardinals to visit Rome and have good wine. The results of the councils have also not benefited the Church at large.
      First the Latin Mass was abrogated so as to bring in a New Missal after Vatican 2(V2), next we have another revised version of the New Missal trying to incorporate so called “proper” translations of Latin words and phrases suited for usage in the missal trying to make the Newest version of Mass on par with the Latin Mass?
      That is as good as saying women should be elevated to the position of priesthood because all in all they are human beings no different than priests and they too can consecrate.
      A straight forward stance has to be taken and maintained. This however is short of Rome’s true intention and it seems to be beating around the bush, quite about most of the time.
      Regarding the Tridentine Full Latin Mass, we should bear in mind what was laid down by Pope St. Pius V in the Council of Trent. I quote his holy words:

      “By this our decree, to be valid IN PERPETUITY, we determine and order that NEVER shall anything be added to, omitted from, or changed in this Missal. . .At no time in the future can a priest, whether secular or order priest, ever be forced to use any other way of saying Mass. And so as to preclude once and for all any scruples of conscience and fear of ecclesiastical penalties and censures, we herewith declare that it is in virtue of our Apostolic Authority that we decree and determine that this our present order and decree is to last in PERPETUITY and can never be legally revoked or amended at a future date. . . And if anyone would nevertheless ever dare to attempt any action contrary to this order of ours, given for all times, let him know that he has incurred the wrath of Almighty God and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.”

      This pertains exactly to the Latin Mass, anyone who dare abrogate the same is in anathema and apostasy, V2 has brought out the worst of it. Even credence to the Ottiavani intervention was neglected and ignored. The young Ratzinger then Cardinal in the V2 council, opposed Latin Mass completely.

      Just because of colonialism a good portion of the world can speak English and French. Prior to that, there was one church language to the adherents of the Catholic Church. So if an Indian went to Germany he heard Mass in Latin and if a German went to India he too heard Mass in Latin, this was before Vatican 2. There was no confusion, the beauty of the Latin Mass is still intact. At worst you do not understand in the sermon which could be in the vernacular of the country, the rest of the Mass is Latin.

      Of course one is free to have a view of their own. But then again, either you can go for a support towards Latin or not. The Newest missal is the same as beating around the bush, putting a good stock of books to waste and confusing the minds of the Catholic laity who are as fooled to following something like sheep. My undying support to the TLM(Tridentine Latin Mass) remains intact.

  3. The way I see it is that prayer is an upliftment of the mind to GOD. What is the use or fulfillment for the person who prays if he/she cannot understand what is being said; and the responses are just parrot-like ??. Surely God understands that it is meant well, but there must also be a direct communication with one’s Maker and this cannot be achieved by repeating something that sounds like mumbo jumbo to the person who prays. How many of the clergy are fluent in Latin ?? If we want to go backwards then why not Aramaic the language that JESUS probably preached and spoke in ??? Besides Latin is NOT a spoken language

    • Deusvicit says:

      Fabulous points you raise. I would like to state that our personal prayers should be in a language only by which we wish to use for our personal satisfaction.
      Latin is no mantra and mumbo-jumbo parrot like referencing. It is by far the most refined and scholarly Church language, which requires lesser words to emit a meaning unlike other languages such as English, that would take up an entire sentence to bring out an explanation.
      Jesus as man knew both Aramaic and Hebrew, he spoke Aramaic while he was in Bethlehem and Nazareth, and reverted to Hebrew while at Jerusalem. To assume rightly, Jesus is God and he knew every single language he never told us to pray to him using a particular script.
      The Apostles were Blessed with Pentecost and could speak in any language. There was a diversity of languages due to early church missionary activity and as a result there was no such “universal” or “catholic” language per se.
      Latinizing took effect due to the Western Roman Empire under Emperor Constantine the Great welcoming Christianity and thus it became the unofficial and official church language ever since. There have also been many heresies involving matters with the language barrier. As such the Eastern Rite “Catholics”(not to be mistaken with Orthodox) continued to show allegiance to Rome and retained their unique missal and language. Such as Syrian for the Syriac Christians, or Aramaic for the Maronites(Lebanese), we can refer to these Catholics as either Eastern Catholics or Maronite Catholic/Syrian Catholic.
      However, Latin was codified as the church language of the majority of the Roman Catholics by Pope St. Pius V, who even placed a precaution that if anyone dare change the TLM(Tridentine Latin Mass) he/she would be in anathema and in a state of sin(If you may look up the above mentioned quotation in my earlier comment)

      I am not saying we should pray in Latin, we can pray in the language of whatever we may choose. Latin as a language has it’s strong points, of using lesser words to communicate the same meaning or giving more feeling and expressing higher emphasis when used.
      But at least in Mass a Latin Missal would do no harm. It was the only Mass until 1962(Vatican II). Why are most of the clergy not learned in Latin? Vatican II is the answer. Also I feel a lot of theological and spiritual problems(multi-faith prayer ceremony at the apparition site of Our Lady of Fatima, Portugal) are linked with Vatican II. Heck, l’ll even go the whole 9 yards and say that most of the modern problems facing the church have some bearing with V2.
      Do read this, I request of you.

  4. I shall stop pleading the cause for praying/prayers to be in a language other than Latin. As is obvious, this extremely learned person who cloaks behind a “nom de plume”/alias, knows chapter and verse better than I do; as a matter of fact, I know nothing of all the numerous diktats and councils that have been quoted; so I feel it is wiser to just keep silent and so that people will not know that I am a total fool. All I do know, is that whether I pray with my mind, or by uttering some words, in whatever language I am familiar with, I know from the depths of my soul that MY God will hear me. My best wishes to all those who think otherwise.

    • Deusvicit says:

      what you wish to do is your free will, all the best in supporting prayers only in the Latin language.
      I am much obliged to your kind words in calling me “extremely learned”, it means a lot, I am not as intelligent as yourself, thank you.
      Cloaking behind a “nom de plume” is very etchy once in usage. An internet armchair warrior using a pen as his/her weapon with a secret identity to challenge the injustice, is indeed a noble task. Mine is not necessarily a nom de plume, but a nom de guerre. King Henry VIII of England was called “The Defender of the Catholic Faith”, well we all know what he ended up doing for his faith, a nice nom de plume eh?
      It is no big deal to know the various diktats and councils, all I quoted was a binding statement given by St. Pius V as a warning to any individual(inclusive of future Popes) who would dare try to abrogate and change the Latin Missal since 1570 after the Council of Trent. Do not call yourself a fool, at least you are not a fool to me.

      Just to highlight what I stated earlier, was based on the Latin Mass the Full Tridentine Latin Mass and not Latin Prayers. Say your personal and group prayers in the language of your ease and convenience, but at least for that session of Holy Sacrifice known as the Latin Mass we the Catholic Community should revert back to pre-Vatican II practices and unite with our priest in celebrating the untouched Latin Missal. I guess you haven’t read the weblink I posted earlier, do take a look it is about what is being taught in the seminary in Bombay by the Novus Ordite priests. God hears everyone, only God will conquer. All the best fergymisquitta

  5. Pingback: Society of Saint Pius X Right Thinking – Keeper of Tradition, Guardian of Catholic Faith | K2 GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS LLC

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