About the NWI Latin Mass Community
The NWI Latin Mass Community supports the Traditional Latin Mass in the vicinity of the Diocese of Gary, Indiana. Not representing any particular parish, it seeks to connect and inform those devoted to the Extraordinary Form and works to advance the availability of the traditional rites of the Roman Catholic Church within the diocese and nearby areas, in full communion with the local bishops.
The organization was officially founded on December 12, 2015, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is managed by a nine-member board that corresponds with church officials, organizes petitions, arranges special events, provides publicity, and advocates on behalf of the Traditional Liturgy. All are welcome to register as part of this network to voice their support for the Traditional Mass in the Gary Diocese and to receive information, updates, and other benefits that the NWI Latin Mass Community offers. The organization currently supports the Traditional Latin Masses at the Carmelite Monastery in Munster, Indiana, and St. Andrew the Apostle Parish in Calumet City, Illinois.
The NWI Latin Mass Community supports and promotes the Traditional Latin Masses, rites, and sacraments in the vicinity of northwest Indiana and works for their increased availability in communion with the bishops. It seeks to preserve, defend, and expand Catholic culture and tradition in a secularized world through beautiful liturgy, solid catechesis, evangelization, and good works.
Built on a Groundbreaking History
The history of the Traditional Latin Mass in northwest Indiana begins with the Carmelite Monastery in Munster. Its prior at that time, Father Thomas Balys, OCD, at the recommendation of Bishop Norbert Gaughan of the Diocese of Gary, established the Traditional Latin Mass on Saturday evenings. The first Mass was Saturday, August 25, 1990. 2015 marked its 25th anniversary.
The Carmelite Monastery was one of the very first locations to offer a Traditional Latin Mass for many miles around. In the greater Chicagoland area, the only other church to offer it every week was St. John Cantius in Chicago (which began in February, 1990). It wasn't until many years later that demand for the Traditional Latin Mass would resurge and cause it to become more widely available.
In 2007, Pope Benedict XVI legislatively removed all obstacles for those who want access to the Traditional Latin Mass and sacraments. With that momentous event, the Carmelite Monastery, already with an established Latin Mass, was featured in local newspaper articles such as "Latin Mass Fills Pews at Munster Monastery," and photos and reports from the Carmelite Monastery's Mass were used in newspaper articles across the country.
In June of 2006, unable at that time to obtain a location in the Diocese of Gary, the Latin Mass was started on first Saturday mornings just over the border at the stunning St. Andrew the Apostle Parish in Calumet City with the permission of Bishop Joseph Perry, auxiliary bishop in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Bishop Perry himself has offered Pontifical High Mass there. Celebrants have included priests from traditional orders such as the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius, Fraternity of St. Peter, and Institute of Christ the King. 2016 marked its 10th anniversary. In a report to Rome, the late Francis Cardinal George informed Pope Benedict XVI on the success of this Mass; the Cardinal was eager that it continue.
In the fall of 2007, shortly after Pope Benedict XVI's landmark legislation "Summorum Pontificum", a Latin Mass began at St. Stanislaus church in Michigan City, every Sunday at noon. Father John Hogan was the celebrant. Father Hogan passed away on September 14, 2014, the seventh anniversary of "Summorum Pontificum" coming into effect. Regrettably, the Mass was suspended due to lack of an available celebrant.
Creating a Bright Future
The Latin Mass Community seeks to help grow the long-standing Saturday Latin Mass at the Carmelite Monastery and will always support it.
However, the Traditional Mass is not available anywhere in the Gary Diocese on Sunday mornings, Holy Days of Obligation, or during Holy Week, nor are the traditional forms of the other sacraments and rites, such as Baptism, Confession, Confirmation, Marriage, and funerals. Unfortunately, many people from the Diocese of Gary are therefore forced to travel to other dioceses—such as Chicago and South Bend—to fulfill what Pope Benedict XVI1 and Pope St. John Paul II2 rightfully called their "rightful aspirations." Sadly, too, these faithful are left without any kind of parish life.
The NWI Latin Mass Community is currently exploring possibilities to resolve these issues. We believe that the traditional rites deserve to be offered among the "variety of prayer experiences across the diocese," and we want to help ensure that no Catholic in the Gary Diocese who loves tradition is left "marginalized and disengaged."3
All Catholics are always welcome to attend the Traditional Latin Mass. Bring a friend, and experience the richness of the Catholic Church's traditions! As Pope Benedict XVI declared, "What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too."
Show your support by registering today!
- Benedict XVI. Letter to Bishops Accompanying "Summorum Pontificum". 7 July 2007.
- John Paul II. Apostolic Letter given Motu Proprio Ecclesia Dei. 2 July 1988.
- Gary Diocese Synod. Top Synod Initiatives. 1b of "Sacraments, Prayer and Worship" and 3b of "Evangelization."