torsdag 28 juni 2012

How Una Voce is organised

Foederatio Internationalis Una Voce (FUIV) is an international organisation for promoting the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. It is made up of affiliated national organisations There are several types of structure. The three main ones are the federation, and two types of unitary structure, of which the English Latin Mass Society is the most notable.

A federation, such as Una Voce America, where several groups or associations or chapters come together to form a national federation is the most obviously convenient one because it allows the flexibility to draw together different independent groups across the Country. Thus there is UVSan Francisco, UCOrange County, and UVSan Bernadino, as well as UVAlbany, and UVBrooklyn, all within UVAmerica. This national federation structure mirrors the structure of the FIUV itself. Our Membership Committee is encouraging even very small groups to try to incorporate the potential for a national federation into their structures at the outset because it allows maximum flexibility for the future.

The LMS is probably unique in having an unrivalled national remit with a single membership and a single governing structure. It works well in England and Wales but would never work, for example, here in Ireland, where there are many groups, and would be hard to replicate except where the culture and circumstances admitted an obvious and agreed unity across the Country. There has never been any question of an Una Voce Wales or a Latin Mass Society of York, for example.

The third structure is the most common, which is that of an association, often called by the country's name, such as Una Voce Russia or Una Voce Japan, or often more limited in scope, to a region or a diocese, such as Una Voce Natal (Brazil) or Una Voce Seville (Spain). There is the possibility of creating a national federation of these groups to mirror the structure of FIUV or not, as the groups decide for themselves. This structure has its own advantages and disadvantages. It is more realistic when the group is small but it can also mean that when three small groups join FIUV we are unable because of our limit of three groups per Country to admit a fourth and it is often too late or too difficult to form a national federation for various reasons.

A mixture of the first and third structure is, I am advised, probably the ideal.

It may be best if local groups should try to entitle themselves and work at the most local possible level because, apparently, the Latin Mass Society of Ireland was anything but a unifying force, partly because it insisted that it was the only legitimate group in Ireland. If it had been Una Voce Dublin (which might have been more accurate) it could have cooperated more effectively with other groups in Ireland.

However, the structure and title of the group is entirely a matter for the members themselves. There are Model Statutes available for any group of people wishing to form an association.

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Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor

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