The Diocese of Providence has a rich diversity when it comes to the cultures and traditions that are manifested in the celebration of the Mass. There are many beautiful churches that have been built by the sacrifices of immigrants who have populated the State of Rhode Island. A lot of these churches built in Rhode Island were designed prior to Vatican II and have a beauty that reflects the celebration of the Liturgy of the Traditional Latin Mass. Baptismal fonts were placed in the back of the church as a sign that one enters the Church through baptism. The stained glass windows and the Stations of the Cross in many of these churches reflect a deep faith and understanding of the Catholic Church’s perennial teaching as well as depicting scenes from the Gospel.
Beauty and truth are intertwined in the art and design of these churches which elevate the worshipper’s mind to God and to his or her eternal destiny. The old pipe organs played music that enchanted the listener to the sounds of Gregorian chant, polyphony and various other timeless tracts. The Mass is both eternal and universal — celebrated everywhere, in every culture and every tradition.
Many young people today are drawn to the traditional celebration of the Holy Mass as has been witnessed by the various parishes that celebrate it in the diocese. As our ancestors who saved their nickels and dimes to build and beautify these churches for a proper and glorious celebration of the Mass, so too, today many people are rediscovering the richness, beauty and truth that are represented by the traditions of the liturgy that have been offered from the earliest days of the Church. Maybe it’s time to go back to something old, venerated and solemn rather than trying to re-invent the wheel for the sake of novelty.