I was quite excited on 16AUG08 when the Traditional Latin Mass returned to Annunciation Catholic Church in Kiln, MS. During Lent, 2008, we had a healthy crowd of 40+ in attendance. When Father Noone told me that starting in August he would offer the Latin Mass every Saturday evening, I was sure we would have a good number show up. After all, this was no longer a trial period, but was something that, those who prefer the 1962 liturgy, could rely on as their Sunday obligation every week. We hoped and still hope to replace this Mass with a Sunday Mass but, herein lies the problem. We only have around 20 in attendance at this Mass, there is only one priest, and a shortage of servers.
When father Noone announced he was going on a pilgrimage in May 09, I contacted the two Biloxi Diocesen priests who had gone to the FSSP Latin Mass training to see if they would be interested in filling in for Father Noone in his absence. Both declined.
So, there are three threats lurking in the distance:
1) Priests willing to offer the Latin Mass. Father Noone continues to offer the Mass but there are no other priests to fill in when he is gone. This only means a cancelation of the Mass for the period of his absence.
2) There is only one server. To be quite honest, there is a shortage of "young" men in attandance. An older gentlemen who helped pioneer the Annunciation Latin Mass serves if needed ( If regular server cannot make it), but has trouble with the genuflections due to his age.
3) Low attendance. 20 in regular attendance. It is non uncommon to see new faces from time to time. Possibly, they travel from some distance and cannot come every Saturday or maybe they are just visiting the area and found the Mass online.
Are we seeing the future demise of the Mississippi Latin Mass? I pray not.
On a lighter note, the white and red vestements have arrived. They are quite beautiful and come from St. Paul, MN. "Custom Sewing By Peggy" http://www.customsewingbypeggy.com/vestments_roman.htm