Magister on the French Conference and the “Tridentine” Mass

Sandro Magister has a very good article this week about the French Conference’s meeting, the issue of the possible "indult" and other related things.  Here is one of best snips:

Benedict XVI wants to heal this schism – which is, in effect, more doctrinal than liturgical – but he also wants to grant, beginning immediately, the innocent desire of those priests and faithful who are fond of the Latin Mass in the ancient rite. He therefore has it in mind to facilitate the use of the Tridentine missal, in particular by removing the obligation to obtain permission from the local bishop.

And that has stirred up the French bishops.

Magister dissects the snarky comments made by members of the French conference about the mere desire for the use of the older Missale as well as the real issues which concern the French.  He also brings in quotes from His Eminence Francis Card. Arinze’s speech to the conference, which functioned "like a cold shower".  Here are some quotes from Cardinal’s speech:

“The sacred liturgy is not something that has been invented…”

“Many of the abuses in the liturgical domain have arisen, not from ill will, but from ignorance…”

“We must distance ourselves from that coldness, that horizontalism that places man at the center of the liturgical action, and also from the openly egocentric showmanship that our Sunday assemblies are sometimes obliged to witness…”

“Unfortunately, many homilies seem like addresses marked by considerations of sociology, psychology, or – even worse – politics. Sometimes they are delivered by members of the lay faithful, who are not even authorized to deliver the homily, which is reserved for those who have received ordination…”

“For a priest to try to share with the lay faithful the role that he exercises in the liturgy by virtue of his being a priest, and which is strictly reserved to him, is evidence of false humility and of an inadmissible conception of democracy or fraternity… “

“If one weakens the role of the priest or fails to appreciate it, a local Catholic community can sink dangerously into the idea that it is possible to envision a community without a priest…”

Cardinal Arinze repeatedly cited the 2003 encyclical by John Paul II, “Ecclesia de Eucharistia,” an encyclical whose “primary purpose” – according to the authoritative theologian Giuseppe Colombo – that of “denouncing what is probably the most widespread abuse in today’s Church: that of celebrating the Mass without an ordained priest.”

 

I am hearing these days that the indult is in trouble.  However, I do not believe that to be true in the long run.  Magister agrees:

 

It is thus foreseeable that Benedict XVI will take a little more time, will listen to the objections from some bishops and cardinals, but in the end – probably by winter – will issue the Motu Proprio that will facilitate the use of the Tridentine rite.  

 

The indult needs a lot of work… for it to work.   Forces arrayed against it are considerable.  However, Pope Benedict has a strong record and clear thinking about the use of the older form of Mass.  That should never be far from the minds of those who want it.

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45 Responses to Magister on the French Conference and the “Tridentine” Mass

  1. Jon says:

    Father,

    “Forces arrayed against it are considerable.”

    No names, please, but are you aware of any forces arrayed FOR it? Do you suspect or know of any high-ranking prelates who have visited Rome to lobby in FAVOR of it?

  2. Fr. Bartoloma says:

    And we chase the carrot into the winter.

  3. RBrown says:

    As Fr Z pointed out earlier, objections from French and German bishops were predictable and not without precedent.

    There are of course two distinct, but not mutally exclusive, components to the problem. The first is the exercise of papal authority in liturgy, which was pretty much given away by Paul VI. The second is the celebration of the mass itself–Latin, ad orientem, and use of the 1962 Missal.

    That is partly why I have thought that the first liturgical move by BXVI should be toward mass ad orientem. My guess is that most churches have a portable table that could be removed easily (even though I know pastors would complain). There would also be no complaining about Latin.

    On the other hand, re the would be Motu Proprio: When bishops come to Rome (or speak publicly) against the liberalization of the use of the 1962 Missal, the question should always be: What is your plan for healing the schism?

  4. Jacob says:

    What I’d like to know is where is the Apostolic Exhortation? After all the speculation on its content regarding the Mass after the conclusion of the Synod, I think it is plausible that it will play a part as well.

  5. Jeffrey Stuart says:

    Papa is doing what has been called in my busines (excuse the expression), “Getting everyone’s hands on the murder weapon.” He’ll let everyone have their say, feel as though they have contributed (which they have) and then move right along with what he wants to do.

    God Bless Papa.

  6. Boko Fittleworth says:

    What’s to stop one of the half dozen decent diocesan bishops around the world from encouraging his priests to learn and offer the TLM, new indult or no? Or from offering it himself? All this talk about the universal indult has distracted us from the real issue: horrible bishops! Thanks to the French for reminding us. If we had good bishops, we wouldn’t need all the documents. With the current crop of lousy bishops, all the documents in the world won’t help.

  7. Dan Hunter says:

    Dear Father,One hopeful ray of light from the Diocese of Raleigh,North Carolina;His Excellency Bishop Burbidge will be assisting at a Tridentine indult high mass,on January 7,2007,The Feast of the Holy Family.This mass will be at Sacred Heart church in Dunn,North Carolina.I don’t believe he is offering the mass,the pastor Father Parkerson is.Father what is it called when the Bishop is in the sanctuary during mass but not offering it? Thank you and God bless you.

  8. RBrown:

    Here, I’ve begun using a little Latin — i.e., we periodically sing the Agnus Dei in Latin, and an occasional Latin hymn — that’s it: and there have been complaints already.

    I don’t agree there would be “no complaining about Latin.” Did you really mean to assert that?

  9. David says:

    We are also very lucky in Glasgow, Scotland to have an Archbishop who is very faithful to the Magisterium and who has himself celebrated the Tridentine rite in public.

  10. Henry Edwards says:

    My guess is that most churches have a portable table that could be removed easily (even though I know pastors would complain).

    Do you really know pastors who would complain? Shocking!

    Seriously, the several pastors I know well enough to discuss this, all say that celebration facing the people is even more distracting for their own prayer of the Mass than they suspect it is for the congregation’s. If so, then perhaps we can well call versus populum celebration a lose-lose situation — not only theologically but also pastorally, for both priest and people.

  11. RBrown says:

    Fr Martin.

    The change to ad orientem would happen even with mass in the vernacular.

  12. RBrown says:

    Two questions:

    1. Is there any delimiter for quotations and comments?

    2. I notice some using bold. How is that done?

  13. RBrown:

    I have no problem with ad orientam, although I am disinclined to start it without some context to explain to my parishes why I’m doing it other than, I happen to think it’s the right way to go.

    Using Latin, however, has much clearer mandate: Sacrosanctum Concilium and the last several popes (although probably not JPI).

    But those who think a priest or pastor can get up at a weekday — let alone a Sunday — Mass and launch into Latin, without complaint from parishioners, without disruption . . . I do wonder where they go to Sunday Mass.

  14. Paul Haley says:

    Complaints about return to Latin should be dealt with by the motu-proprio and the document Sacrosanctum Concilium (Vatican II) which said Latin should have “pride of place” and appeal to logical minds -i.e., if you are travelling and are familiar with Latin and you happen to go to a Mass celebrated in Latin, guess what – you will understand what is going on even if you don’t speak the language of the country concerned. Epistles, gospels and sermons will almost always be given in the vernacular after the Latin version read in the Mass. As to the resistance, pray, pray hard, that their minds will be enlightened and their hearts softened.

  15. As far as ad orientum goes, any priest can say Mass this way anytime, no permission needed. I have a friend, priest, who just one weekend moved the alter to the wall and started saying all Masses ad orientum. There were letters written to the Bishop who called him in and told him to stop. He informed the bishop that it was not in his authority to make him stop saying Mass in an acceptable way, brought out the Cannon Law, they went back and forth… the outcome? Well he is still saying Mass ad orientum and the Bishop backed off. I do fear he will pay for it later when the new assignments come up.. Nothing ever said Mass had to be said facing the people and Arinze confirmed this back in like 2000 or something. So if the Bishop tell you to stop, you can appeal to Rome and the Bishop will lose, and they know that.

  16. TJM says:

    Given Pope Benedict’s numerous writings on liturgy,
    and how there has been a “break” with our liturgical
    past, I would not be surprised at all if the Pauline Missal
    is surpressed or substantially revised. I think a return
    to Latin, particularly the sacred music, would be a step
    in the right direction. My parish, is uber-liberal.
    However, we occasionally sing the Agnus Dei in Latin and
    the Pange Lingua during Holy Week in Latin, and shockingly
    the congregation sings them very well and strong. I’m
    not as pessimistic as some that there will be wide-spread
    resistance, save for 1960s holdovers. Tom

  17. Barb Schoeneberger says:

    In my dreams I pray that the Pope will not only release
    the document freeing the Traditional Mass, but that he
    will also celebrate a Solemn High Mass in St. Peter’s
    on TV. Let him also baptize some children using the 1962
    Missal, confirm a few in those liturgical books, and
    ordain priests from one of the traditional orders
    such as the FSSP or the ICR using those liturgical books.
    That will be the greatest sign of all to everyone.

  18. fr.franklyn says:

    Mass celebrated with the bishop seated in the sanctuary is “Missa coram Episcopo”Mass celebrated in the presence of a bishop.There are ample documents that support the use of Latin in the Mass,but people are not aware of them.If I were you,Father Fox,I would run these documents and lectures (such as the one given by Cardinal Arinze)in your bulletin.Then when the Exhortation comes out (hopefully before the Second Coming or at least the nest synod) I would preach several sermons on the liturgy in lightof the exhortation and Sacrosanctum Concilium.I would bring in an expert or trusted theologian to speak on the Mass.I would publish the exhortation (whenever it comes out) in the parish article by article.I would have the parish organizations devote themselves to the study of it.I would ask the parish pstoral council and other parish leaders for suggestions on how (not whether)to implement it in your parish.Then do it. Remember the impact Pope Paul’s exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi,had on the church.Little was heard about evangelization before it but afterwards it became the biggest activity in the church.Then there was the synodal exhortation,Familiaris Consortio,which had a great impact startin all sorts of familiy programs in parishes.Then came the exhoration Catechesi Tradendae which slew the modernisitic catechetics monster,then ther was Pastores Dabo Vobis which has influenced many priests’retreats.This exhortation,whenever it comes,willhave a similar impact-so be prepared for the opposition will try and claim it (as they tried to do with Familiaris Consortio).
    make your plans now and pray that Benedict issues it.He now istalking of it being the basis for the 2008 Eucharistic Congress!!!!! There was one mistake in Magistro’s excellent story.St.(padre)Pio never received an indult from Pope paul.Padre Pio celebrated mass according to whatever missal was in use which would have been 65.He died in 68 and so never said the NO.Magisro was probably thinking of St.Josemaria Escriva who did receive an indult for public mass.

  19. Tim Ferguson says:

    RBrown, the comments section takes html. I’ve found this, HTML Made Really Easy to be a handy and quick resource, it includes a paragraph on how to include something in bold. just remember to turn it off at the end of a phrase, or, like heresy, it keeps going and infecting everything else! :)

  20. RBrown says:

    RBrown, the comments section takes html. I’ve found this, HTML Made Really Easy to be a handy and quick resource, it includes a paragraph on how to include something in bold. just remember to turn it off at the end of a phrase, or, like heresy, it keeps going and infecting everything else! :)

    Many thanks.

  21. RBrown says:

    RBrown:

    I have no problem with ad orientam, although I am disinclined to start it without some context to explain to my parishes why I’m doing it other than, I happen to think it’s the right way to go.

    Using Latin, however, has much clearer mandate: Sacrosanctum Concilium and the last several popes (although probably not JPI).


    OK, but what is the mandate for versus populum?

  22. RBrown says:

    As far as ad orientum goes, any priest can say Mass this way anytime, no permission needed. I have a friend, priest, who just one weekend moved the alter to the wall and started saying all Masses ad orientum. There were letters written to the Bishop who called him in and told him to stop. He informed the bishop that it was not in his authority to make him stop saying Mass in an acceptable way, brought out the Cannon Law, they went back and forth… the outcome? Well he is still saying Mass ad orientum and the Bishop backed off. I do fear he will pay for it later when the new assignments come up.. Nothing ever said Mass had to be said facing the people and Arinze confirmed this back in like 2000 or something. So if the Bishop tell you to stop, you can appeal to Rome and the Bishop will lose, and they know that.

    Isn’t every priest also able to say mass in Latin whenever he wants?

    I know a priest who in the mid 80′s studied canon law in Rome. At that time Rome was packed because so many were being sent to study the new code. Not finding any room at the Inn (Casa Santa Maria), he found a room with a group that will remain nameless.

    The rector welcomed him, saying that they concelebrated mass every day at a certain hour. When the priest said that he didn’t need to concelebrate, the rector told him he also didn’t live there.

    W

  23. RBrown says:

    One other point: It’s not only a matter of the bishop not wanting to lose, he also doesn’t want to make waves and–especially if he’s still running the episcopal cursus honorum–to have it known in Rome that he is having trouble running his diocese.

  24. Jon says:

    Father Fox,

    “But those who think a priest or pastor can get up at a weekday—let alone a Sunday—Mass and launch into Latin, without complaint from parishioners, without disruption . . . I do wonder where they go to Sunday Mass.”

    I asked my friend, David Farragut, about this. He replied, “Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!”

  25. Fr Franklyn:

    Thanks for the constructive advice; that’s along the lines of what I had in mind.

    R Brown:

    I don’t see anything in the relevant documents “mandating” or compelling the priest to face the people, or forbidding ad orientem. I tend to be in favor of it, although it’s hard to say exactly what I would conclude about it, until such time as I actually experience offering Mass that way, in a parish setting. But I see a lot of reasons for it.

    But I continue to insist that it’s rather silly and unrealistic to suggest a pastor’s course of action is dictated solely or essentially by such “it’s allowed” so “damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead” as Jon urges.

    Jon, I don’t know if you or your friend David are pastors; I assume you would say so. But in my opinion, that kind of approach to offering Mass either (a) ad orientem or (b) even merely significantly in Latin (let alone mostly or all) is just foolish for a pastor.

    Much wiser is to lay the groundwork, develop a plan, identify and mobilize allies, educate as needed, neutralize or at least blunt opposition, move deliberately but not in an offensive way, step-by-step to where you believe you ought to go. (I.e., it’s not about the priest’s “preferences” but about being faithful to the purpose of the liturgy and the needs of the people he serves. If it becomes about the priest’s preferences, then that is a problem.)

    Personally, I think a pastor should not pick a fight unless he’s certain that he must do so. And if he can get where he wants to go without a fight, then that seems, on balance, preferable.

    Plus, I think it is true that most people in the pews are not liturgy activists; they will go along unless you shove something in their face, you antagonize them, or make life particularly difficult for them. Most folks aren’t going to get upset about “Agnus Dei” vs. “Lamb of God,” or a correct Psalm text, chanted, vs. Marty Haugen, etc. A deliberate approach, seems to me, tends to isolate the cranky folks (a minority) from the majority who will say, why are you getting so upset about that? A “damn the torpedos” approach is rather inconsiderate of all concerned — and tends to put the cranky minority and the equanimious majority on the same side.

    Seems to me, if I’m going to have a battle, I’d rather have it with the cranky minority, not the majority. But perhaps “Fr Jon” (?) and “Fr David Farragut” can tell their success stories?

  26. Deacon Jeffery BeBeau: A comment you wrote was caught an eliminated by my spam filter. You can avoid this by registering. Also, contact me for the text of your comment which was preserved in an automated e-mail so you don’t have to retype it.

  27. RBrown says:

    Ad orientem, folks.

    Yeah, I know, but I don’t think there’s any provision here to correct typos.

    BTW, I’m use to seeing it ad oriens.

  28. RBrown says:

    I just noticed that I hadn’t written ad orientum, so I withdraw my excuses

  29. Anonymous says:

    This requires a lot of work and forethought on behalf of the Holy See. If the Tridentine Mass is now approved via a universal indult, with much of the decision-making power taken out of the hands of bishops, it still falls to the bishops to grant the right for the other sacraments to be administered under the ’62 books. So, Rome has to carefully balance things so that there is no backlash.

  30. Jon says:

    Father Fox,

    My apologies. My response was tongue-in-cheek. I’m afraid the closest proximity I have to the clerical state is my status as a lowly Dominican tertiary. And “my friend” David Farragut, would be Admiral Farragut, who uttered his famous lines in 1864 when finding the entrance to Mobile Bay jammed with mines.

    Pushing through in the face of what seemed certain destruction, all but one of the Admiral’s eighteen ships passed through the channel unharmed, and the last Confederate stronghold on the Gulf of Mexico fell to the Union, sealing the Federal blockade, and opening the way to victory.

    I’m sure you see the analogy.

    “Personally, I think a pastor should not pick a fight unless he’s certain that he must do so. And if he can get where he wants to go without a fight, then that seems, on balance, preferable.”

    Without a fight? Preferable? Certainly, but sometimes being pastoral means shearing the sheep.

  31. J. Cassani says:

    “If the Tridentine Mass is now approved via a universal indult, with much of the decision-making power taken out of the hands of bishops, it still falls to the bishops to grant the right for the other sacraments to be administered under the ‘62 books.”
    This is a very pertinent question, since those who are attached to the old rites would naturally wish to be married, and have their children baptized according to these rites. I rmember reading earlier this year an interview with Cardinal Castrillon in which he stated that the current indults include all sacraments. It seems possible that a universal indult would carry the same permissions. Confirmation would then be the only sacrament requiring a bishop’s permission, since he would be the minister.

  32. Jon:

    I’m not actually as dense as I might seem; I used to know enough about history to pick up on such historical allusions. In my defense, I did recognize the quote, but I forgot who said it!

  33. Jon says:

    Father Fox,

    You’re forgiven!

    Btw, I’ve been to Piqua. My previous company had an office in Troy I used to visit occasionally. I don’t remember the town being big enough for TWO Catholic churches ;^)

  34. Jon:

    Nonetheless, Piqua has had two Catholic parishes since 1855.

  35. RBrown says:

    R Brown:

    I don’t see anything in the relevant documents “mandating” or compelling the priest to face the people, or forbidding ad orientem. I tend to be in favor of it, although it’s hard to say exactly what I would conclude about it, until such time as I actually experience offering Mass that way, in a parish setting. But I see a lot of reasons for it.

    But I continue to insist that it’s rather silly and unrealistic to suggest a pastor’s course of action is dictated solely or essentially by such “it’s allowed” so “damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead” as Jon urges.

    Jon, I don’t know if you or your friend David are pastors; I assume you would say so. But in my opinion, that kind of approach to offering Mass either (a) ad orientem or (b) even merely significantly in Latin (let alone mostly or all) is just foolish for a pastor.

    Much wiser is to lay the groundwork, develop a plan, identify and mobilize allies, educate as needed, neutralize or at least blunt opposition, move deliberately but not in an offensive way, step-by-step to where you believe you ought to go. (I.e., it’s not about the priest’s “preferences” but about being faithful to the purpose of the liturgy and the needs of the people he serves. If it becomes about the priest’s preferences, then that is a problem.)

    Personally, I think a pastor should not pick a fight unless he’s certain that he must do so. And if he can get where he wants to go without a fight, then that seems, on balance, preferable.

    To me your attitude seems typical of most so-called conservative pastors. There seems to be an assumption of success if craziness in the parish has been suppressed. Parochial success is not merely measured in mass attendance, collections, and whether the people like the pastor.

    So ask yourself: Is your parish producing vocations to the priesthood and religious life? ENRON style accounting is now being used to measure vocations: Instead of to the priesthood and religious life, it has become permanent deacons and Eucharistic ministers.

    What percent of your parishioners do you think are practicing contraception? How many confessions do you hear every week?

    I don’t expect pastors to think they can singlehandedly reform the Church, but I do expect them to provide more than just lowest common denominator quasi Catholic life.


    Plus, I think it is true that most people in the pews are not liturgy activists; they will go along unless you shove something in their face, you antagonize them, or make life particularly difficult for them. Most folks aren’t going to get upset about “Agnus Dei” vs. “Lamb of God,” or a correct Psalm text, chanted, vs. Marty Haugen, etc. A deliberate approach, seems to me, tends to isolate the cranky folks (a minority) from the majority who will say, why are you getting so upset about that? A “damn the torpedos” approach is rather inconsiderate of all concerned—and tends to put the cranky minority and the equanimious majority on the same side.

    Seems to me, if I’m going to have a battle, I’d rather have it with the cranky minority, not the majority. But perhaps “Fr Jon” (?) and “Fr David Farragut” can tell their success stories?

    I think a Bear Bryant story is in order. When he became head coach at Texas A&M, a sportswriter, Mickey Hershberg, was sent by the Houston paper to interview Bryant. MH told him: I have been sent here by my editor to find out whether there is dissension on the team.

    Bryant’s response: Tell your editor that if there isn’t dissension here, there is damn well going to be . . . and I’m going to be the cause of it.

  36. Dear Father R Brown:

    Please, describe your success in this area.

    Your insulting comments are not appreciated.

  37. Cool down everyone. This is a blog, not a bar. I can extinguish comment posting anytime.

  38. RBrown says:

    Dear Father R Brown:

    Please, describe your success in this area.

    Your insulting comments are not appreciated.

    1. Why are they insulting?

    2. Although I am a Roman trained theologian, I am not a priest.

    3. Are you saying I cannot have an opinion on such matters? Are we laici not supposed to be able to see the problems? Am I supposed to be blind to the fact that the 4 parishes in this town are served by 1 (count ‘em–one) diocesan priest and 2 Carmelite priests (one of whom has usually been semi-retired). Shouldn’t I notice that confession is seldom available? Or that the diocesan priest doesn’t say mass on the day he goes to his prayer group? (Figure that one out.)

    4. How many dioceses in the West are ordaining priests at replacement levels?

    5. The point is–and, as I intimated above, neither you nor any other individual pastor is to blame–the present MO is not working. It is a pastoral failure.

    6. I converted in 1970. Since then I have all but drowned in promises that soon the Church would be reformed.

  39. The pastor I spoke about with the ad orientem, has had only a select few leave. There are other parishioners that are not happy with it, but remain. Oh he also uses the communion rail. Some people stand, most kneel to receive at the rail. Most that kneel are doing it out of instinct that thats what you do at a communion rail. So it is a great case as to why to bring it back (never recall it being banished) and increase devotion/belief in the Eucharist! Instruction is necessary, but no need to over do it or think the people won’t understand. Fr. Fox, I would suggest what this pastor did as a good approach. Put an insert into the bulletin about the upcoming changes (eg. ad orientem, Latin cannon, etc.)and make it detailed with simple explanation. Then hold an explanation session 3 different times for parishioners with the simple line that you strongly encourage people to attend one and learn and ask questions. At that point most people will just follow what you do, like it or not, a few will leave and that’s it. Just take the questions, concerns, harsh crit as you would after giving the NFP homily… Plus the Lord will help you since you are trying to glorify Him, just trust in Him like you have in the past.

  40. RBrown says:

    I have a friend, a classmate from Rome, who a few years ago was made pastor in a sparsely attended parish. A few years after taking over he restored the church–put the communion rail back in and hauled in an altar (the other was gone) taken out of a Benedictine monastery. Once a week he has mass in Latin. He has in the past year brought in an order of sisters to teach in the school.

    A few predictable things happened: First, the parish began to flourish, including vocations. Second, the other five pastors in town (as well as certain other diocesan priests) began to oppose him openly. Third, the chancery began to harass him.

    Personally, I don’t know how he was able to stand it. Maybe it was just that he was so devoted to his parish.

  41. TJM says:

    I have a simple suggestion for the pastors. Just co-opt
    the “diversity” mantra. We are doing more Latin and ad
    orientem so there are more “diverse” ways of worshipping
    in the Catholic Church. I bet liberals would squeal if
    the pastors took that approach because what liberals really
    want is to freeze the late 1960s style of worship for
    all time – the very thing they criticized the Church for
    with the Tridentine Rite. Tom

  42. Mr. Brown:

    This will be my last comment to you.
    You asked what was insulting:

    “To me your attitude seems typical of most so-called conservative pastors. There seems to be an assumption of success if craziness in the parish has been suppressed. Parochial success is not merely measured in mass attendance, collections, and whether the people like the pastor.

    So ask yourself: Is your parish producing vocations to the priesthood and religious life? ENRON style accounting is now being used to measure vocations: Instead of to the priesthood and religious life, it has become permanent deacons and Eucharistic ministers.

    What percent of your parishioners do you think are practicing contraception? How many confessions do you hear every week?

    I don’t expect pastors to think they can singlehandedly reform the Church, but I do expect them to provide more than just lowest common denominator quasi Catholic life.”

    Some people seem to confuse “obnoxious” and “orthodox.”

  43. Jeff says:

    RBrown:

    I think Fr. Fox is taking the approach advocated by Joseph Ratzinger of slow, steady and easy.

    I know many people who are good, solid, devoted Catholics who love versus populum and the use of the vernacular. Their whole spirituality is built around it.

    I trust a good pastor like Fr. Fox to figure out what should be done in a non-fanatical way to the least detriment of souls.

  44. RBrown says:

    Some people seem to confuse “obnoxious” and “orthodox.”

    I almost never use the word orthodox.


    RBrown:

    I think Fr. Fox is taking the approach advocated by Joseph Ratzinger of slow, steady and easy.

    I know many people who are good, solid, devoted Catholics who love versus populum and the use of the vernacular. Their whole spirituality is built around it.

    I trust a good pastor like Fr. Fox to figure out what should be done in a non-fanatical way to the least detriment of souls.

    As I said above, I don’t expect him or any other pastor to change anything–the reform of the Church is a matter for the hierarchy, not for priests in a parish. There will be, however, certain priests, such as my friend, who try to change things themselves.

    I don’t doubt that Fr Fox is doing what he has been trained to do and is acting according to what is required in his diocese.

    My point is very simple: The present situation is not working. Even in so called conservative* parishes, where things seem to be going well, they’re not. And so to be very concerned about some kind of smooth transition from the false tranquillity of the status quo seems to me a waste.

    The FSSP has made almost no inroads into France and Germany–bishops there are going to be obstructionist no matter how precise the step by step approach may be.

    * I do not consider myself an Ecclesiastical conservative. I am a Thomist who thinks the Roman Rite is much better than the Novus Ordo, and it should be used by all (exc the Dominicans, Carmelites, and Carthusians) with everything in Latin except the readings.