Friday, July 04, 2008

Summorum Pontificum: One Year Later
This coming Monday, July 7, 2008, will mark the one year anniversary of Pope Benedict’s Apostolic Letter “Summorum Pontificum.” As some of my friends know (Cavey, Former Altar Boy, et al), I have written for years regarding the state of the liturgy in the Roman Rite that most of us attend every Sunday. I have also been extremely up front about the fact that the new Mass, the Mass of Paul VI, or what is now called the Ordinary form of the Roman Rite (that we have had since 1969), is not what the fathers of the Second Vatican Council envisioned when they signed off on the 1963 document, “Sacrosanctum Concilium.” Having said that, I know that there are a host of people, to include many priests and bishops, who would take umbrage with that remark. My response however, is for them to actually READ Sacrosanctum Concilium, and then compare it to the rubrics of the new Mass. Even better, read Sacrosanctum Concilium, then actually watch the average Sunday liturgy in any one of a thousand Roman Catholic parishes around the nation. Then let’s talk.

My response to Summorum Pontificum, as a layman, is one of tremendous joy and ultimately, relief. There were thousands, if not millions of Catholics around the world, who have always believed that the old Mass, the Traditional Latin Mass, that had sustained Roman Catholics since the 5th century, was NEVER abrogated by Paul VI, and that every single Catholic priest had the right to celebrate it without permission! For those of us who held this position, many for over forty years, we were ignored, slandered, ostracized, accused of being disloyal, schismatic, etc.

But now, slowly, but surely, this great Vicar of Christ is returning Holy Mother Church back to tradition, back to a sense of our Catholic heritage, most importantly by his own example. I will never back down from my belief that the new Mass is grossly inferior to the Traditional Latin Mass, in its theological underpinnings, in its lack of beauty, majesty and mystery. But I will always believe that it is valid, and that when properly celebrated (watch a typical Papal Mass at St. Peter's these days), it can be inspiring.

Lastly, I continue to thank God every day for Benedict, his vision, strength, leadership, and personal example. May he have many years left, in order to continue the “Reform of the Reform.”


Blogger Simplex Vir said...


11:15 AM  
Blogger Mac McLernon said...

Amen to that!

11:16 AM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

Well said!!

2:32 PM  
Blogger Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Well Said, well said

6:09 PM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Orthodoxae said...

Amen and Amen!

6:49 PM  
Blogger Mary Rose said...

Amen and amen!

PreVat2, what I find interesting is that when I returned to the Catholic church a few months ago, I found that I really didn't like the more "progressive" NO Mass. I wasn't interested in the seemingly endless trek of the laity to the altar for the ostensible purpose of inclusion.

I had enough of this when I was in non-denom churches. There was this undercurrent of pride if someone was asked to participate regularly in one fashion or the other.

So. I wasn't brought up with the Traditional Latin Mass (or as our Holy Father calls it, the "Gregorian Rite."). I was stunned when I found that it answered the cry of my heart. I wanted to find a place where reverence for our Savior reigned, where the focus was totally on Him and not ourselves. I wanted quietness so I could contemplate Him in all His glory.

Could I have done that with felt banners and a dancing priest? Not likely. But at the same time, I do wonder how many find a connection with God during the NO Mass which I find bland and uninspiring. Maybe they do. If they do, God bless them.

As for me, I'm a Latin Lover and hope to be for the rest of my days.

P.S. I joined the choir specifically to learn Latin. I love it. :-)

7:33 PM  

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