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Mike_in_Kenner said in November 14th, 2013 at 9:41 pm

Dear Mr. Chessman,

I do not believe that you and I have ever met, but we are connected by at least one strand of the web of grace: we were blessed to experience the friendship and priestly ministry of Fr. Wilfredo Comellas. I first met him when he was a seminarian about 17 years ago. I reconnected with him about two years ago when I discovered he was serving in Louisiana not too far from where I live. I had the privilege of attending Holy Mass at the places he worked in Gibson and in Lockport, Louiaiana.

Today (Nov. 14) I had the privilege of singing with the schola for the Solemn High Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Fr. Comellas. I miss him terribly, but I am happy to say that I think he got a funeral according to the liturgical tradition that he loved so much. The clergy vested at Holy Savior Church (the parish church) in Lockport, then processed to meet the body at the convent chapel about two blocks away. The full rites of the Roman Ritual were performed, with the chanting of Psalm 129, then Psalm 50 chanted as the procession with the body went from the convent chapel to the parish church. The Solemn Requiem went beautifully well. I counted about 20 priests in attendance, plus a few deacons and religious also present in choir. After the Mass and Absolution, there was a procession directly from the church to the cemetery right behind the church, with the chanting of the In Paradisum and the rest of the ceremonies at the tomb. He was entombed next to other priests who had served in Lockport. The tomb is a traditional south Louisiana style above-ground vault. The ceremonies were all very beautiful.

Fr. Comellas was very happy to be a Third Order Dominican–his body awaits the Resurrection on the Last Day clothed in the habit of the Order of Preachers.

I write this just to offer the consolation that Fr. Comellas did great work promoting the Traditional Latin Mass in Louisiana, and some of the fruit of his labor was evident at his beautiful funeral today.

Requiescat in pace.

Mike in Kenner, La.

stuart chessman said in November 15th, 2013 at 7:25 am

Alas, it was not I but Mr. Screwtape, our columnist, who knew Fr. Comellas.

Mr. Screwtape said in November 15th, 2013 at 5:54 pm

Thank you so much for your consoling description of the funerary rites. Tears so bittersweet welled up as I read how tenderly his mortal remains were laid to rest. Sepulchered with that sacred sodality ’til that final terrible trumpet blast is fitting for one who championed the holy worship of the Most High. Greatly will he be missed.

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