Fly in Amber Syndrome

The Church and Holy Mass are not flies in amber.  I was strongly reminded of this today when saying Mass with the 1962 Missale Romanum.
In the older calendar, today is the feast of St. Ignatius of Antioch.  However, on 17 October I honored St. Ignatius on his feast according to the newer Novus Ordo calendar.
Some people sort of sneer at the Novus Ordo because changes were made to prayers and feasts.  However, there were changes made after the very first "Tridentine" Missal.  Changes were constant.  Sure, most of them were adjustments rather than reconstructions.  But they were changes.  The Missal is a document reflecting a living Church.
Let’s have a little fun with this.
Here is a detail of a page in the editio princeps, the 1570 Missale Romanum.  This is the Tridentine Missal!  All the subsequent editions to 1962 we ought to call the "so-called ‘Tridentine’" Missal.
This image shows the collect for St. Ignatius as it was in 1570.

Here now is a detail of the corresponding page in the 1962 editio typica. This is the edition the Holy See says may be used licitly (not any other, mind you).

Notice that the prayer is different?
Here is the corresponding page from the 2002 editio tertia of the so-called Novus Ordo Missal.

Whew… really different.  But then again, changes have been made to prayers and feasts all along the way.  BTW… this prayer is a new composition for the Novus Ordo based on two prayers in the Sacramentarium Veronense.
I will leave it to an enterprising reader to transcribe the different versions and translate.
We are not flies in amber.  We are not stuck in a book like dried flowers waiting through the years to be glimpsed with nostalgia.
We need a derestriction of the older form of Mass for the good of the Church and the correction of her liturgical practice.  We need it soon.  But we need it for the right reason and in the right way.
The things I showed here point to a couple serious issues which might be causing some of the delay in the Motu Proprio we all long for.
There has always been the issue of the calendar. For example, I say the newer breviary, the Liturgy of the Hours, rather than the Roman Breviary as it was.  However, I very often use the pre-Conciliar Missal for Mass.  That means that there is virtually never a harmonious connection between the prayers of the office and prayers of the Mass.  (Yah… I suppose the sanctimonious out there will tell me I should use only the Roman Breviary, but  they can chew my ankles all they want.  Been there.  Done that.  It’s fine.  It’s not what I do.) 
The disconnect of calendars is a big problem.  For example, at the end of the year in the Novus Ordo we have the Solemnity of Christ the King.  In the older Mass we use up Sundays left over after Epiphany and Christ the King is at the end of October.  Holy Church can sustain many calendars, of course.  Maronites and Byzantines have their calendars and we are all Catholic.  However, if we are going to say we are Roman Catholics, using the Roman Rite, using the Roman Missal, then there is a serious problem when we are using different calendars.  If I were Pope, I would be very tempted to issue an edition of the Roman Missal with the older Ordinary of Mass but with a revised calendar so that we are all at the very least on the same page. 
Perfect solution?  Probably not.  But it is a problem needing consideration.
In any event, I thought you might enjoy this liturgico-archeological moment.

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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82 Responses to Fly in Amber Syndrome

  1. Jeff Moore says:

    In italiano o inglese?

  2. Jeff Moore says:

    Sorry, I was curious as to whether you pray the Breviary in Italian or in English. Thanks, Jeff

  3. Jeff: Latin, virtually always. Occasionally in Italian. The only time I even touch an English language breviary is when I am with American priests back in the USA and we say the office together.

  4. Antonius says:

    Father, out of curiousity:
    would you have trained servers at your disposal in Rome when saying yer Old Masse?

  5. Joseph says:

    Father, now this is interesting. I don’t recall ever reading your thoughts on the breviary before. Might I tempt you to go into a little more detail, re: your observations concerning the Breviarium Romanum and the Liturgia Horarum? I myself, although “Tridentine” in many liturgical leanings, opt for the revised breviary as opposed to the old one. Just looking to share some thoughts, I suppose.

  6. Jon says:

    Father,

    Hmm…just curious, but doesn’t “For example, I say the newer breviary, the Liturgy of the Hours, rather than the Roman Breviary as it was. However, I very often use the pre-Conciliar Missal for Mass. That means that there is virtually never a harmonious connection between the prayers of the office and prayers of the Mass. (Yah… I suppose the sanctimonious out there will tell me I should use only the Roman Breviary, but they can chew my ankles all they want. Been there. Done that. It’s fine. It’s not what I do.)” somewhat contradict the piece of advice given a few years back to the below inquirer?

    Father Z.,

    I know that when praying the Liturgy of the Hours, which is the “current” edition of the Breviary, that I’m praying “the prayer of the Church.” What about when I use earlier,pre-Vatican II breviaries, like a 1950′s English edition of the Roman Breviary, or my 1914 edition of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary? At that point, do I depart from “the prayer of the Church” into simple private devotion? I’ve read on another website that this is so. I hope not. I enjoy the LotH, but I also love the older breviaries, with the beautiful versicles, like “O Lord hear my prayer – And let me cry come unto Thee, etc…”

    It would seem that if I’m allowed to attend the Traditional Mass, then I’m also allowed to use the traditional Roman Breviary and expect the traditional efficaciousness.

    Can you help?

    Yours in Christ the King,

    Jon

    By Fr. J.T. Zuhlsdorf (father_z) on Sunday, November 24, 2002 – 12:56 am: Edit Post

    Jon: Unless you are a priest, professed religious or consecrated virgin, you don’t have any obligation one way or another to use the what is now called the Liturgy of the Hours or pray older Roman Breviary at all. For you to do so is a matter of private choice and devotion, rather than canonical and moral obligation. So, you are free to choose what you want.

    I would offer a few points to consider, however.

    First, if you are praying this is a group, and this group is not particularly well-versed in Latin, then use the English translation of the newer form. Even though the translations leave something to be desired, they are nevertheless usable and comprehensible.

    Second, if you do not know Latin, and do not have the edition of the older Breviary with English translation, you are better off with English.

    Third, if you are attending primarily or exclusively the older form of Mass, then use the older form of the Breviary so that your liturgical life is integrated. This is useful for feasts and especially for Sundays. If you are going mainly to the newer Mass, then use the newer Liturgy of the Hours for the same reason, and turn to the older form from time to time.

    I agree that much was lost in the change of form and content. However, some things were gained as well. I would say that, whatever you do, make sure that you are nourishing the prayer dimension together with the aesthetic enjoyment too.

    Finally, IMO, either form seems to fulfill the obligation for those bound by law and promises to recite the “office”. There are now religious communities which use these older books exclusively. Since you are not bound in the same way, however, you are completely free to choose what you want accordingly.

    Best wishes,

    Fr. Z

  7. Jon: “doesn’t [that] somewhat contradict the piece of advice given a few years back to the below inquirer?”

    Nope.

  8. Jon says:

    Father,

    Somehow I thought you’d iron that out ;^)

  9. Jon: Nope.

    o{];¬)

  10. fr.franklyn mcafee says:

    I agree with you on the calendar and the Breviary.Celebrating Christ The King as the culmination of the liturgical year to me makes sense, rather than on the sunday which is Reformation Sunday in Protestant churches. Not many protestant churches ,to my knowledge,celebrate Ref.Sunday.

  11. dcs says:

    Maybe it would be best for the N.O. Calendar to change. It would be easy to come up with a new cycle of readings, too — just look at the old Missal.

  12. RBrown says:

    There is another alternative that was used by an Argentinian friend who later worked at the Cong of Bishops. The choice of 1962 or 1970 Missal notwithstanding, he wanted to follow the new calendar but just didn’t like the new Breviary–thought the prayers of intercession were dumb (no argument there) and was tired of reading the interminable OT readings.

    And so he every year he bought the Ordo from Solesmes, which coordinated the old breviary with the new Calendar.

  13. Father Z: In regard to the divine office, it is perhaps a bit perversely gratifying to see a topic on which your views are not as cogent, simple, and sensible as on other topics. After all, no one should be perfect.

    In regard to the missal, I take it as given that a principal objective in the construction of the 1969 missal was a certain deconstruction of traditional Catholic faith, so as to replace it with a new, better, and considerably different faith.

    Following both calendars in detail as I do – both saying a traditional office and studying the prayers and readings of the 1962 Mass of each day before leaving for Novus Ordo Mass – I’ve come to believe that changing the calendar was a tool in that deconstruction, rather than an end in itself (e.g., with a goal of improving the calendar per se). Am I wrong?

  14. JAS says:

    But, Father, I think this example undermines your point. The variation of these two orationes illustrates how much the Church has sought to be “a fly in the amber,” so to speak, as both are extremely ancient prayers. The first, if I am not mistaken, was written originally for St. Caesarius, and the second for St. Fabian. Both date at least to the early Middle Ages. Thus, the Church deliberately chose not to compose a new prayer, but rather selected another prayer of venerable antiquity to be addressed to St. Ignatius.

    The new composition, on the other hand, as you have said, is new, hybrid composition, and so the change from the 1962 prayer to the 1970 represents a far different sort of change than from the 1570 to the 1962.

    Finally, is it not dangerous to choose the new calendar over the old, as so doing would remove the sort of cultural associations that have been acrued around the old feasts. Already, most people who celebrate their namesdays, for example, are no longer liturgically in sync with the feast of their patron, as the namesdays were not updated when the calendar was.
    All best, JAS

  15. pb says:

    Not to sound like a stick in the mud, because I support having one calendar for the Latin rite as well…but such a change would cause a fair number of traditionalists to have a fit. They’ll see it as more tinkering for change’s sake, and some will use the “it’s a baby step towards getting rid of the TLM for good” argument. Also, on the practical level, everyone’s 1962 missals (including recent reprints) would become obsolete overnight. Of course, I suppose it would be easy enough to publish a small ordo that cross-referenced the old and new calendars, but I can still imagine a lot of irritation. Personally, I would hope that revising the calendar and readings of the traditional Mass would take place some time later in the future, after the freeing of the TLM has some time to effect the needed shifts in attitude (i.e., the main body of the Church becomes more open to tradition and the traditionalists start feeling less threatened and become more mainstream).

  16. James says:

    There’s nothing wrong with tinkering a little with the calendar. What I don’t understand, however, are the sudden wholesale changes. Why did they move the feast of St. Ignatius all the way to 17 October? Was there a good reason, other than to “shake things up”?

  17. John Polhamus says:

    Longish post, but you raise some interesting points Padre. I’m afraid I disagree with you Padre, on several points. I mean, you’re entitled to your opinion, and if if works for you, well, good. I think you’re one, perhaps one of the best examples around, of a priest whose mind we know, and whose objectivity, even subjectivity can be trusted to be eminating from orthodoxy. You see, your blogutation preceeds you! As to the problem between the discontinuity between the two calanders, I would argue that the simultanaeous existance of different calanders for the different uniate rites renders the novel issue of two simultanaeous calanders for two simultanaeous rites within the latin branch (or trunk if you will) moot. It’s working just fine. Besides, it’s a non starter with the Trads anyway, they won’t buy the stripping of the calander. They never have, and if that’s what Benedict is waiting for, I think he’ll be waiting long time, and we’ll just limp alont until the inexorable growth of the traditional orders repopulates the church with orthodoxy.

    Look, one can’t undo historical development with the stroke of a council. The liturgy and the communion of saints that it celebrates are an accretive reality. Sure as more saints were added there were “demotions” to commemoration status, as other names were added, but that’s just the point. Names were added, not taken away, and there’s a big difference between a commemoration with the context of a larger feast, and the modern minimization of a memorial, with NO feast attached. The saints and their feasts are a gift to the faithful, and are supposed to be an emphatic part of their concept of time and the demarcation of their lives. The churches calander is meant to be full, not empty. Sure, “we never had two calandars before!” Well, we’ve never had TWO latin rites before either, but we do now, so why NOT have two calandars.

    Regarding the traditional breviary, I think the reform that could help it the most is so simple it just gets overlooked. What is the problem? The calandar is so full of feasts that most days in the year the Sunday office is all that is celebrated. What is the answer? Save the Sunday psalms for Sundays and major feasts, like Holy Days of Obligation, or certain solemnities which fall on weekdays, and the rest of the time say the psalms for the weekdays as they fall. There’s no dishonour to a saint in saying one psalm or another, regardless of how one “thinks” they ought to be assigned. The psalms are all equally holy and important, so let them fall where they may, and lets see what the Almighty is saying through them on any given occaision. Being experienced, however, in both versions of the breviary, I do prefer the traditional one. It’s just so much fuller, AND there is the problem of liturgical application. The breviary isn’t just there to be read, it’s there to be DONE, and the new one has no approved, or applied typical liturgical context, and this IS serious. We are a liturgical church, and believe in embodying our prayer and acting it out as a temporary physical manifestation (insofar as we are able) of thge court of heaven as we understand it. As weak and fallible as we human beings are, it is precisely during these liturgical moments when we truly act our best – generally speaking. Outside the liturgy humans who are able to act as well as they do inside it often achieve sainthood. We need all the help we can get, yet the Novus Ordo church at large has absolutely no intention of “going there” with the breviary, much less with the mass. It is at the point where life and liturgy coincide that the dividing line falls in this argument. The trads know where they are; where they’ve always been, whether they’re new to the game or not. People value their spiritual lives that much.

    That’s why I doubt very much, passionate as you may be about the issue, and not you alone, that the issues of the calandar and the breviary are going to shift much from the traditional point of view. Besides, the “We all have to pray exactly the same thing at the same time all the time” view of the breviary begins to draw an uncomfortable association to the Hindu concept of Karma, or as Lenny Kravitz would have it “What goes around, comes around.” Or one could describe it as the Star Wars “force,” but it isn’t. Nevertheless, I didn’t create the discontinuity, and neither did you. But clearly, before moving ahead with reform from a flawed and unstable base, we ought to find redress in an approach which actually works, and go forward from there. It’s not a case of going backwards in time, it’s a case of bring the past up to date and going forward from a position of strength.

    One last point, such a method may make Fr. Reggie Foster feel uncomfortably mediaeval, but look to the east, east of Jerusalem, east of Eden in fact. What do you see coming at you? A little mediaeval objectivism might be a wise prescription for the mediaeval threat which even now embeds itself into Western Europe. Remember the Dutch film director who’s head was removed a couple of years ago? Remember Daniel Pearl the journalist? Their executioners weren’t arguing about calandars and breviaries. They were focused on their plan. We should be so focused.

  18. Father Z:

    Some people sort of sneer at the Novus Ordo because changes were made to prayers and feasts. However, there were changes made after the very first “Tridentine” Missal. Changes were constant. Sure, most of them were adjustments rather than reconstructions. But they were changes.

    In her 2005 Nova et Vetera article, Lauren Pristas examined the fate of the 66 Sunday and Holy Day collects in the 1962 missal. Of these, 32 (just about half) were not retained among the Sunday and Holy Day collects in the 1970 missal. Of these 32 ditched collects, all but the two for the modern feasts of the Holy Family (est. 1823) and the Holy Name of Jesus (est. 1721) had been in continual use for 12 centuries, dating back to the 8th century, beyond which she said there is insufficient documentary evidence to trace their earlier provenance. Changes were constant?

    The greatest damage was done to the Church’s ancient and intense seasonal sense in its calendar. For instance, of the 28 collects in the Church’s most intense proper seasons – Advent, Christmastime, Lent, and Paschaltime – only 2 are identical in the 1962 and 1970 missals. Now, that’s real change for you.

    Moreover, Pristas’ comparative analysis of selected collects in the two missals indicates that this sweeping quantitative change in collects is mirrored in their qualitative changes, seemingly in essentially a single doctrinal direction. She concludes that nothing remotely resembling the scope of these changes had ever happened previously in the 12 centuries of history of the Roman liturgy that can be traced.

    I attend the Novus Ordo Mass daily. I do not sneer at it. Nor do I fatuously dismiss the compelling evidence that, in the hasty, largely unmonitored, and ideologically one-sided construction of the 1970 missal, the Church’s prayers were changed pervasively in ways that would be quite unlikely to find approval today.

    I think restoration of wide use of the traditional missal is vital for the future of the Church. I believe reform of the new missal for still wider use is still more important.

  19. John Polhamus says:

    I think we need to be a little frank about why the traditional mass needs to be derestricted. The reason you cite is entirely subordinate. Correcting the mistakes of other liturgies is a secondary reason for the Motu Proprio. There is in fact only just reason to derestrict the traditional mass, and that is that it glorifies God. No other reason will do, will it? Mass is not celebrated for the sake (for the effect perhaps, but not for the sake) of correcting someone’s behaviour. It is, as you know, celebrated to fulfil the Divine command to make Christ present. In doing this is love we glorify God, which puts certain constraints and makes certain demands on our outward actions. Clown masses may memorialize Christ, they may even be valid by some improbable turn of events – but they hardly GLORIFY God; the same with every other abusive situation you can think to name. In the old mass, Glorification of God is part and parcel with every scripted, amber encrusted, time immemorialized, accretive, experience proven action. I am a fly very happily caught in such amber (yet I work as an organist in a novus ordo parish subject to some of the same abuses I mentioned above – how ironic is that). Amber, once polished, is highly to be prized; it represents considerable human effort.

  20. Ben D. says:

    John Polhamus,

    The breviary isn’t just there to be read, it’s there to be DONE, and the new one has no approved, or applied typical liturgical context, and this IS serious

    Can you expand a bit more? I’m taking you to mean, effectively, that there’s nothing these days to correspond to what was so nicely summed up in the old Liber Usualis; i.e., standardized rubrics and chant settings for the whole of the Liturgy. It’s not so much that no one has bothered to publish a new Liber Usualis, but that no one could could publish one if he wanted to, because the content doesn’t exist?

    On that topic I was gratified yesterday to learn about the Mundelein Psalter, which should be published in April and, if it’s what it sounds like it is, will be a useful and long-needed step in the right direction. Granted it’s in English, and will need to be re-done entirely when (please God!) the Divine Office is re-translated, but it’s something. And the fact that it can be used now for the Divine Office that most American clergy and religious pray every day, means that it has some potential to resuscitate an interest in traditional chant.

  21. Boko Fittleworth says:

    Just wanted to recommend two articles from thenewliturgicalmovement.blogspot.com on the Office. One from November and one from January. Really good stuff.

  22. Dan Hunter says:

    Father Zuhlsdorf,
    We are one,holy,Catholic,apostolic Church.
    We should use one, holy,Catholic,and apostolic Divine Office.
    One Mass for the Roman Rite.
    One missal
    We all believe the same creed.We must all pray the same prayers.
    If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.
    Was the Church broke before 1964? No it was not.
    Everyone was on the same page, in the Latin Rite .As it must be now
    God bless you

  23. Mr. Polhamus,

    You need to address your posts to make clear to whom you’re responding.

    I think we need to be a little frank about why the traditional mass needs to be derestricted. The reason you cite is entirely subordinate. Correcting the mistakes of other liturgies is a secondary reason for the Motu Proprio.

    If “you” refers to my post preceding yours, then you misunderstood me. I said “I think restoration of wide use of the traditional missal is vital for the future of the Church.” So the old Mass can continue to glorify God as it has for so long.

    And “I believe reform of the new missal for still wider use is still more important.” So the Mass that most Catholics will continue to attend can glorify God better than it now does.

    Even so, I suspect that one of Benedict’s reasons for liberating the old Mass is to guide the reform of the new Mass. If so, that’s fine with me; the more the new Mass is guided by the old Mass, the better.

  24. Fr Sean Finnegan says:

    Fr Z,
    I agree wholeheartedly with you. The whole thing is a mess, but one has to start somewhere and make some rules of thumb. On the subject of the present calendar, I was once given to understand that Bugnini wanted all saints removed, leaving only the Apostles. The saints crept back in if they had friends in the Curia, basically. Thus fairly major saints like St Francis Borgia or St Dominic of our Lady of Sorrows were left out (and have become increasingly forgotten) while St Januarius (of interest only to Neapolitans and those with a fascination for the miraculous) have remained in the universal calendar.

  25. David S says:

    With regard to the changes in Saints days and other aspects
    of the calendar (like Christ the King and Septuagesima),
    does anyone here know of official explanations of why
    the various, specific changes were made? For example,
    “The feast of St. Ignatius of Antioch is moved from
    February to October because…..”

    I recall something from Sacrosanctum Concilium to the effect
    that changes should be made only if the good of the Church
    required them. Seems to me some sort of explanation of the
    improvements was in order.

  26. Joshua says:

    Fr. McAfee wrote: “I agree with you on the calendar and the Breviary.Celebrating Christ The King as the culmination of the liturgical year to me makes sense, rather than on the sunday which is Reformation Sunday in Protestant churches. Not many protestant churches ,to my knowledge,celebrate Ref.Sunday.”

    It was my impression that Christ the King was not at the end of the year for two reasons:

    1. Practical. Since it is a relatively new feast having it on the last Sunday of October avoids permanently suppressing any one Sunday (unlike say Holy Family which has replaced the 1st Sunday after Epiphany-which is still read on ferial days of that week)

    2. Theological– Christ is King NOW, not just at the end of time. So having the feast at some point in the year points to that fact. Indeed, the very feast was established precisely for that reason…Christ is King NOW.

    In addition The Reformation represents a break with Christ the King, having the feast on the same day that others celebrate that great apostasy from the Body of Christ is a large symbol as well

    That said, it does not mean of course that the NO’s placement of the Feast denies that Christ is King now, or anything of the sort. One can see it rather as pointing to Christ’s Kingship as being the culmination of the Church not in time (since He is King now) but in order of nobility

  27. Joshua says:

    I would also add that our current Holy Father once lamented that change to the calendar as destructive, since many of the days changed were ancient observances with deep rooted customs attached. Of course changes have been there for 35 yrs so simply saying return to the old calendar is no fix for that.

    Also, I know for a fact that though, as Father Z. points out, new feasts have been added, and prayers to the propers in the cycle of saints have been changed, that not one word of the Ordo had been changed from 1570 until 1962 (unless you count Holy Week). I have also heard it claimed, and the few that I have compared agree, that no changes at all were made to the propers of Sundays (again unless you count the 1st Sunday of Epiphany being replaced by Holy Family as a change to the propers…but the feast was not changed, just superceded).

    So the only changes then were new feasts and propers for saints (not counting things of custom, like when and where to ring bells, and perhaps the 2nd confiteor). That of course is a matter of pedantry and does not argue in principle against other changes.

  28. Marc in Eugene says:

    Father Z.– “If I were Pope, I would be very tempted to issue an edition of the Roman Missal with the older Ordinary of Mass but with a revised calendar so that we are all at the very least on the same page”: three and then three more cheers. But of course there would be those who wouldn’t open the book.

  29. fr.franklyn mcafee says:

    I believe a general policy was to have the saint’s feast on the day of his death.That is traditional but over the years other celebrations were appointed to what might be a day of death.So in the move to restore the tradition other tradtions were overturned.One change I never could see was the ImmaculateHeart.Moving it to the day after the Sacred Heart makes sense at first but then you realize all the tradition surrounding August 22.Blessed Teresa of Calcutta did not like that move since their order,the Missionaries of Charity,was founded on specific Marian Feasts.Pope Paul gave her an indult to contnue to observe august 22 as the Immaculate Heart,

  30. Schismatic traditionalist says:

    The best breviary to use in English is The Roman Breviary from 1964. The
    psalms and scripture readings are from the Confraternity version while the
    translations of the collects and hymn translations are very traditional. The
    only problem is it is out of print and rather expensive to buy from used dealers.
    Another good translation is hte 1908 breviary in 4 volumes but this one is nearly
    impossible to find. Ironically, the Virginia Episcopal seminary here has a
    copy.

  31. tim says:

    Fr., I have no problem with a unified roman calendar, but only on this model: that the traditional calendar be the basis and form, updated with more recent saints. Otherwise, I fear the slash-and-burn, “saints days detract you stupid and ignorant faithful from being able to focus on God” mentality the new calendar embodies. The new calendar is a type of wasteland, denuded of the wonderful variety of feast days that so mark the year and give substance to one’s spiritual journey.

    Also, fwiw, I would leave the Mass readings as they are in the old rite– despite the oft-quoted allegation that the new Mass covers “more” of the bible. In quantity, perhaps, but not in quality.

  32. Alexhah says:

    Father,

    Of course it is silly to suggest using the New Calendar, as this one was deliberately “purged” of so-called non-existing saints of the Church and

  33. It’s quite clear that the West has a history of tinkering with the calendar and moving saints and their feasts on and off the calendar, long before the modern age.

    Want proof? Read up on St Clement of Alexandria.

  34. Alexhah says:

    therefore is not rooted in the traditional practices of the Latin Church in fasting and celebrating. It destroyed many local traditions and pieties and worries the people.

    For all clarity the traditional Calendar, like the traditional Rite, has proven itself.

    There is no need for mixing. The ROman Breviary of the late 1950s was of course
    messed up by the Bugnin-Bea scholars too. Sad thing. I’d rather use the Pius X edition then.

    But the New Calendar is omnium haeresion liturgicarum summa, not a solution.

    Or do you not believe in St. Christopher and Ste. Philomena?

    I know some would like to eradicate Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer from the saints’list too, but that is not possible either.

    By the way, there have always been priests using the older versions of the Missal, even with the old Ignatius of Antioch collect. The Franciscans and Dominicans did not adapt
    their mass formularies all the time. Neither did the Ambrosian Milanese.

    Let the New Calendar die out by its own confusion and arrogance towards the Saints.

  35. John Polhamus says:

    Henry, I thought saying “I disagree with you Padre” would be preface enough. But I’ll try to be more punctilious about it in the future.

    Ben, my point is that one of the functions of liturgy is to temporally embody and manifest the heavenly liturgy, i.e the hierarchical court of heaven. This is related to the letter of James, “Be DOERS of the word, not HEARERS only, decieving yourselves.” The capitalizations are mine ;-) Sheridan Gilley gave a marvellous talk a few years ago at the Faith of Our Fathers Conference in London about just that. In his talk he refuted the notion that Catholics don’t know their bible, saying that they knew it in a different way: they were accustomed to their bible being enacted every day on the altar, embodied as an expression of the incarnation, and a realisation of the point made in the letter of James. They “knew” the bible in liturgy, organised, public expression, rather then from a read or heard text. With this in mind, the rubrics of the traditional office are of a clear, precise (with some allowance for minor variation) Editio Typica organizing words, actions and music. They are based in accretive tradition, and officially approved. They are standardised.

    The New Breviary has no such liturgical tradition. There is no standardised way of interpreting it, and very little evidence of practices anywhere relating it to the scriptural basis for liturgical expression. Besides that, there is little intent on the part of the wider church to develop such an application, so the whole point is pretty moot. Excepting, that is, where the modern office were to be interpreted in the light of the traditional one, which is almost nowhere. And even if it were, the psalter published by Solesmes would be of Benedictine application, rather than Roman. The new Roman office has no liturgy.

    Plus, any attempt to “formulate” a “Roman” liturgical format for the new office would be just that, another formulation, invention, imposition of bureaucratic inspiration; not universal, not accretive, separated from the context of legitimate accretive liturgical development. It’s unfortunate, but it’s true. Public prayer with proper form is the higher and more efficacious of the two applications for the Roman Breviary, the corporate prayer of the church having a greater value, according to Dom Fernand Cabrol in his splendid introduction to the Day Hours of the Church, than private personal prayer.

    By these criteria, a breviary which comes without a tradition, cannot properly be called a Liturgy of Hours at all. There is nothing liturgical about it. ‘Tis pity it’s a fact.

  36. Alexhah says:

    The cycle of readings, the feasts of saints, the liturgical seasons and planning….

    Due to its organically grown structure, the Old Calendar (pre-1969) will prove to be
    better is each and every case.

    You cannot draw the liturgy for a living Church at a drawing table like Bugnini, Marini,
    and even Arinze think they could and should do.

    The living Church of Rome formed its own splendid Liturgical Rites by herself, her
    saints, not in need of the arrogant “wisdom” of liturgists and false archeologists.

  37. Pes says:

    If the Vatican had all of this material in a database, then it would be easy to collate things, represent them in various useful ways, search them, and flag changes. The faithful also wouldn’t have to shell out a lot of money for print versions that become obsolete. Does anyone know if the Vatican has anything like this in the works?

  38. An eye-opening feature of the indult sermons I hear is regular mention of where (if at all) the Sunday’s traditional readings appear in the Novus Ordo lectionary.

    This past Sunday it was Matthew 8:23-27, the miracle of Christ calming the tempest. This great passage of such ecclesiological significance (e.g., the barque of Peter), heard every 4th Sunday after Epiphany in the traditional rite, is relegated in the Novus Ordo to every other 13th Tuesday in Ordinary Time (as I recall). In other words, the typical Sunday Catholic has not heard it at Mass a single time in the past 35 years.

    This example is by no means unusual. Though perhaps only (as in this case) the prominence of some of the Novus Ordo ditched readings makes it seem more the rule than the exception. So, please! Let’s hear no more of this twaddle about how the new lectionary opens up the riches of the Scriptures.

  39. John,

    I was referring not to your “Padre” post but to a subsequent post of yours that immediately followed one of mine that it appeared to answer. But now I notice that my own immediately preceding post has no salutation either, so evidently Father’s original admonition about addressing posts applies all around.

    At any rate, it seems to me that the Church cannot view realistically the difficulties of either the new missal or the new breviary unless it honestly confronts the principal motivations in their constructions – that is, in the deconstruction of the old missal and breviary. Any bosh about how it was all just ordinary change in a living liturgy is …, well, just that.

  40. gravitas says:

    Schismatic traditionalist — don’t you think it’s kind of oxymoronic to call yourself that and claim that anything
    printed in 1964 is better than anything printed before the 1950s?

  41. RBrown says:

    “Be DOERS of the word, not HEARERS only, decieving yourselves.” The capitalizations are mine ;-)

    I assume so also is the spelling: deceive: i before e except after c. And to others: It is Calendar not CalAndar or CalandEr–exempli gratia, the Latin Kalendarius.

    Because Latin is an inflected language, there is less sloppy spelling permitted than in English.

  42. RBrown says:

    Re the difference between the readings from the 1962 Missal and those from the 1970 Novus Ordo:

    The advantage of the NO readings is that there is a greater exposure to texts of Scripture.

    The disadvantage of same is that the readings, at least for daily mass, are almost never co-ordinated into a theme. The same is true of the Breviary, where the second reading is almost never a commentary on the Gospel read at mass.

    In the old Breviary the Gospel to be read at Mass (or a part of it) was read at the III Nocturne, followed by an appropriate Patristic homily.

  43. LF says:

    The Roman Rite has long had liturgical variety, including calendrical variations. As for the Breviarium, I use the older Office principally because of the richer Matins…and here, too, at least for the area of private recitation the PCED graciously replied to me once that they were not bothered by use of the fuller, pre-1961 Matins of nine lessons. I only pray Matinds-Lauds-Vespers anyway. The Litugia Horarum has its attractions, but personally I’ll happily stick with the Breviarium.

  44. Schismatic traditionalist says:

    The 1964 version is one of the few breviaries that is
    tolerable in English. Granted the shortened Matins is
    not to my liking but until my latin sufficiently
    improves, it will have to suffice. It is either that
    or the Anglican Breviary. There are 4 volumes English
    breviaries (one printed in the 1950′s & one version
    printed in the 1930′s) but they are hard to get a hold
    of and are outrageously expensive. I have a 4-volume
    version of the Latin Pius XII and a 4-volume version
    with the Vulgate psalter.

  45. Marie says:

    I was born after the Novus Ordo mass was introduced. I have heard people say, and flipped through an early 1960s missal I inheirited to confirm, that the Tridentine mass had a much more narrow selection of readings than the Novus Ordo mass. I consider the new choice of readings one of the greatest strengths of the Novus Ordo mass. The readings ensured that even before I decided I needed to further my education in my Catholic faith myself, I had a familiarity with the Bible.

    If the Pope decided that the Tridentine rite had to be used with the new reading selections what would be involved? Would this even be feasible? Obviously that readings are already available in Latin, but I assume there’d be a lot more to it than just dropping them in.

    My second question involves your mention of a new version of the Liturgy of the Hours. I currently have a one-volume shortened version of the Liturgy of the Hours, which is fine for morning, evening, and night prayer. I was planning on buying a 4 volume Liturgy of the Hours in the next couple of years. Given the expense, and the fact that if we are blessed with more children, time for the Office of Readings would be years off, should I wait for the new translation to buy the 4 volume one? (There’s nothing like having morning prayer interrupted by two people asking for breakfast and another two having a light saber fight to reinforce one reason for the current discipline of celibacy for priests.) My Latin is not up to the challenge, so I have to use an English-language version.

  46. Seamas O Dalaigh says:

    Father,

    Some very persuasive arguments in favour of the 1969 Rite.

    James Daly

  47. Schismatic traditionalist says:

    Gravitas,

    The Schismatic traditionalist name is a joke.

  48. John Polhamus says:

    Henry, sorry to have confused.

    RBrown, I could claim to have been typing so fast that I forgot that simple rule of spelling, or that I am a habitual practitionor of pre-Johnsonian non-standardised English spelling, but as it is I’m afraid I can only respond “Mea clupa, mea clupa, mea maxima cupla!”

    Marie, if you have the St. Paul or Catholic Book Publishing edition of the Liturgy of the Hours, your one volume Novus Ordo Horae Diurnae (which is what it it, the Day-Hours of the Church, i.e. minus the Night-Office or Matins) is also posessed of Mid-morning prayer, prayer at Mid-day, and Mid-afternoon prayer, the former Terce, Sext and None, Prime or Post-Morning Prayer having been done away with entirely. There is also a section with psalmody and an interesting selection of readings from the Office of Readings, rather alot to keep a layman chewing over them, patristic and fairly lengthy as they are. The Daughters of St. Paul, and later Catholic Book Publishing (apparrantly), used to publish a volume called “Supplemental Readings for the Liturgy of the Hours,” which collected the readings from the Office of New Matins for use with the one volume Liturgy of the Hours, making it complete. Unfortunatey it’s out of print. I prefer the old office, but even so I wish I had a copy of that book. I’ve never been able to find it, scarce as hen’s teeth.

    Seamas and Marie, I’m sorry, but if there are any compelling arguments in favour of the new lectionary anywhere in these postings, I honestly don’t see them. See Henry’s comments above on Matthew 8:23-27. Besides any musician can tell you that the three-against-two beat is one of the hardest things to coordinate. It’s unnatural, and to think that as a lectionary it fits naturally into the rhythm of people’s lives is erroneous. The one year cycle is the natural one, it’s how people organize their activities, it’s the fundamental cycle of the natural world in which we live, and by the time it comes round again, joe-punter-in-the-pew is ready to have his memory refreshed. If he happens to remember it in his pious fervour, a year’s gap is plenty to render a reading fresh. The 3/2 multi-year cycle only leads to un-familiarity, unless you would like to prove this assertion wrong, out of the experience of the past thirty-eight years. I think the evidence indicates otherwise.

  49. John Polhamus says:

    Marie – a note on the office of Prime: the texts of this office are all to do with work, the chores and labour of the day ahead, and in the early 20th century, in the years when the Roman Breviary and the Day Hours in particular were first being forwarded as the concern of the laity as well as of the clergy, the office of Prime was regarded as the “Working Man’s Office.” If the laity were to make a habit of saying any particular part of the daily office besides Compline perhaps, Prime was particularly reccomended. I guess we might surmise that the “Working Man” no longer rates a special regard as he did previously…in the wisdom of the reform. Typically elitist in the name of egalitarianism; in my estimation, anyway.

  50. Henry: You said: In regard to the missal, I take it as given that a principal objective in the construction of the 1969 missal was a certain deconstruction of traditional Catholic faith, so as to replace it with a new, better, and considerably different faith.

    That has always been obvious to me. Also obvious that the new and better faith required a different kind of building, a different kind of altar, a different kind of celebrant, homily, nun, school, choir, music — all these things make a statement, “This is our faith!” And all too often make that statement falsely.

    So often authorities decline to have the tridentine mass on grounds that it is “divisive”. Well, it is, and that is precisely a major reason why we need it. To maintain the tension, to keep the differences between the historical faith and the new faith out in front.

  51. John Polhamus says:

    Ben, looking back at your posting, what you asked me to expand upon (I mean you DID ask!), and then what you gathered I was saying, I suppose I might have simply answered, “You’ve got it!” Sorry to be verbose, but I was on a roll!

  52. Ben D. says:

    John, no problem. I like a good soapbox myself now and again. :)

    As a church organist, do you find projects like the Mundelein Psalter encouraging (setting aside the question of the relative superiority of the pre-1970 Breviary to the current Liturgiae Horarum)?

  53. Paul says:

    John Polhamus,

    “a note on the office of Prime: the texts of this office are all to do with work, the chores and labour of the day ahead, and in the early 20th century, in the years when the Roman Breviary and the Day Hours in particular were first being forwarded as the concern of the laity as well as of the clergy, the office of Prime was regarded as the “Working Man’s Office.” If the laity were to make a habit of saying any particular part of the daily office besides Compline perhaps, Prime was particularly reccomended.”

    Interesting that you should make this comment. Prime and Compline are the only parts of the Office included in The Manual of Prayers published by the 3rd Plenary Council of Baltimore. I was lucky enough to have this gem fall into my lap a couple of years ago and it has proven to be a spiritual boon.

  54. Ben D. says:

    Oops, mean to say Liturgia, not Liturgiae.

  55. Andrew says:

    “I will leave it to an enterprising reader to transcribe the different versions and translate.”

    Certe! (Certaily!)

    Deus qui nos beati Ignatii martyris tui atque pontificis annua sollemnitate laetificas: concede propitius: ut cuius natalitia colimus, de eiusdem etiam protectione gaudeamus.

    Infirmitatem nostram respice, omnipotens Deus: et, quia pondus propriae actionis gravat, beati Ignatii Martyris tui atque Pontificis intercessio gloriosa nos protegat.

    Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui sanctorum martyrum confessionibus Ecclesiae tuae sacrum corpus exornas, concede, quaesumus, ut hodierna gloria passionis, sicut beato Ignatio magnificentiam tribuit sempiternam, ita nobis perpetuum munimen operetur.

    God who us of the blessed Ignatius martyr yours and pontifex by annual sollemnity gladen: grant kindly: that whose birthing we cultivate, of the same also protection we happy be.

    Weakness ours look at, almighty God: and, since the weight of our proper action weighs, of the blessed Ignatius Martyr yours and Pontifex intercession glorious protect us.

    Almighty eternal God, who by the of the holy martyrs’ confessions of the Church yours sacred body adorn, grant, we beg, that todays glory of passion, just as of the blessed Ignatius greatnes granted eternal, so to us a perpetual protection it may work.

    PS Is there some textbook or something that will explain how to read those old manuscripts where little lines replace certain endings such as “hominq~” for “hominemque” et similia?

  56. Ben: Yes, I suppose it’s helpful, though it really only answers as to the musical question of the debate. The liturgical aspect is not going to solved by an individually produced – however well intened – manual of rubrics. A liturgy as I said is something that comes over time from a whole society, a whole people’s interaction with their faith acted out. That doesn’t exist for the Novus Ordo breviary, and frankly, I doubt it’s going to happen, as it’s considered elitist and ritualistic. I guess the Mundelein Psalte is as helpful as anything traditional, since organ related settings of Traditional Gregorian Vespers are virtually non-existant as well. I learned the accompaniments to the antiphons, psalms, hymns and responsories of the Gregorian office by ear and experience, and then adjusted the pitches to the tessatura of the Gregorian choir with whom I work. That’s most often the way of it.

    I don’t want to mis-represent myself either, as an organist I’m not Virgil Fox…or even E. Power Biggs…or even Reginald Foorte! (Anyone familiar with the old BBC resident theatre organist will appreciate the humour of that remark!) But I’m good enough for the Novus Ordo parish I serve, and with my traditional background I have a few things in my head that even the fully-trained A.G.O. organists in town wouldn’t have the foggiest about. The really good thing is I use it, too!

  57. The problem with Mundelein, is that it’s only one group’s version. That doesn’t make it “Roman.” It won’t be long – or, actually, it may very well be, given the general lack of interest – before some other music department somewhere else decided to put together “their” version, which will be more topical, and will sell a few copies…then it will happen again. This only leads to local variants, with no authority behind them. An Editio Typica from Solesmes relative to the Roman Office would be what is needed, except that no one in Rome is asking for one, and even if they got it, no one outside St. Peter’s does Vespers or anything else at a Basilican or Cathedral level. That used to be what Cathedral Canons were for, to sit in choir or help with the offices; in this way the larger churches in any given region were able to provide a liturgical life and office for their flocks…but that practice has gone the way of the dodo (for the time being).

    Although, I must observe, taking a page from Crichton’s “Jurassic Park” liturgical amber is particularly useful if you want to extract it’s rubrical DNA and re-animate a liturgical species…so to speak! (I think this thread has come full circle! Is Father Zuhlsdorf reading?!) I’m envisioning a T-Rex in the narthex of Jurassic Church, wearing a giant triple tiara, with a banner floating down across the screen that says, “When Liturgy Ruled the Church!”…and I’m feeling alot more secure in the face of the marauding Mohammedan raptors, too!

  58. Fr. BP says:

    To all who have posted,

    Time is money. Though I may be terribly wrong on this score I believe this famous phrase may explain why many traditionally minded diocesan priests may currently use the Liturgy of the Hours as opposed to the older Breviary. It simply takes less time to pray. Being in an average parish where we spend our days running from place to place and from meeting to meeting, there is a big time difference in praying the LOH. Now this is certainly not an honorable reason, but I think it may be one of the reasons.

    Personally I believe the deformation of the “Opus Dei” of the Roman Rite began not with Bugnini though he sped it along, but with St. Pius X. The reordering of the Sistine Psalter uncoupling Psalm 118 from the little hours each day greatly changed the whole idea of those hours. It was only preserved for the Sunday Office. The goal of giving more priority to the temporal cycle especially the Sunday office was a good goal of St. Pius X.

    For those of you who doubt Fr. Z’s tradcred I think you should read his column for the Feb 1st 2007 edition of the Wanderer. He is well aware of the work of Dr. Pristas. I think the main point of his demonstration that has elicited all this comment is that the Missale Romanum has changed from it’s 1570 form, and so it could change from it’s 1962 form without necessarily destroying the objective liturgical tradition. The difference between 1570 and 1962 being organic growth and development whereas 1962 to 1969 was akin to manufactured change and even rupture (this is Ratzinger’s point btw).

    On the calendar issue – having different saint’s days is not the biggest issue. The more problematic issue is the temporal cycle. For the reform of the reform I say restore Epiphany and Pentecost as the two poles by which we count the tempus per annum let the English use Trinity as a pole if they want. Restore the Lenten/Pasch cycle (i.e. Septuagesima Season as pre-Lent, Lent and Passiontide, Holy Week and Triduum). Restore the octaves and commemorations and proper last Gospels – that way you can celebrate both Christ the King and whatever Sunday after Pentecost it is at the same time. Do it for both the NO and VO.

    The Reform of the Reform must have an anchor in the tradition, and that is the Missal of 1962. It will take decades if not a century to organically graft the NO back upon the VO so that the whole Roman Rite grows organically together again. In the meantime let Dominicans celebrate the old Dominican Rite in their churches with their calendar, all the various Fransiscans with their calendar, the Vatican with theirs, the Vicariate of Rome and all Italy with theirs, and Romans with 1962 celebrate with their calendar, and Romans in whatever country or diocese with their calendar. My first hope for reform of the reform calendar is that the 1969//1975//2002 MR calendar would end the abomination of Ascension Sunday, Epiphany Sunday, and Corpus Christi Sunday.

    BTW Alexhah just where is St. Philomena on the traditional calendar of the old Roman Rite?

    Yours in Christ,

    Fr. BP

  59. Brian says:

    I wonder if the sort of organic development we want/talk about is possible in the state of the church today. One the one hand, top-down Vatican control/directives inhibit the sort of local development in practice and devotion that came to inform the Vetus Ordo, where local practices could percolate for decades or centuries before making it ‘big time’ and being in the official Roman rite, but on the other hand, liturgy and liturgical formation is such a mess that I doubt anyone would want Rome to stop its oversight. I think we are in between a rock and a hard place….especially since, like it or not, we lack time machines and can’t pretend the NO didn’t happen….

  60. Very simply: organic changes have been made to the Tridentine Latin Mass in the vernacular and until this issue is dealt with head-on in the vernacular Novus Ordo, then the conflict between these two masses shall continue indefinitely. Nothing needs change in the Tridentine Latin Mass, including its calendar. What is wrong with the orgainically sound Mass that Christ created and instituted in the Upper Room? What needs changes, if any of these two masses, it’s indeed the NO.
    Dominus nobiscum et “motu proprio”.

    http://www.theorthodoxromancatholic.com

  61. Fr. BP says:

    Dear j hughes dunphy,

    I wonder if those who celebrate the Byzantine Rite or the Armenian Rite, or the Ambrosian Rite, or the Dominican Rite, or the Lyonaise Rite, or the Maronite Rite, or the Syro-Malabar Rite, or the Syro-Malankar Rite, or the Coptic Rite, or the Ethiopian Rite, or the Mozarabic Rite, or the glagolithic Roman Rite, or the Carmelite Rite (insert other rite of the Church here) would agree that the traditional Roman Rite was the exact same univocal rite that Christ instituted at the last supper — Mysterium Fidei et al?

    –Fr. BP

    P.S. I celebrate regularly the traditional Roman rite and prefer it in most respects to the N.O. Mass.

    P.S. The meaning of univocal is important here.

  62. Fr. BP says:

    Dear Brian,

    One thing above all others that helped to slow as well as centralize the pace of organic development of the liturgy in the past was the printing press. It seems counter intuitive. The printing press made it possible to diffuse new texts and books much more rapidly than the former manner of scribal copying. This allowed the so-called reformers of the 16th century and others to more quickly change or destroy what had been in place and deform it, you might think of it like metastasized cancer cells. In response legitimate ecclesiastical authority gradually centralized liturgical authority and hence organic development within the curia itself. Development was much more measured, much more controlled. In places where legitimate ecclesiastical authority and the scope of Roman authority in particular was in doubt, greater deviation occurred, as for instance, the neo-gallican liturgical books of the eighteenth century demonstrate. Thus when the 20th century came and all of the liturgical nerds entered the scence, their hubris about what they thought they knew about the liturgy animated them, (i.e. Mass versus populum and theories of the early church now disproved about ancient Roman Basilica and the confessio); and when they took over the old central authority they manufactured a whole new rite from the old and used that authority to impose it upon the entire Church in the name of the most recent Council. At the same time they decimated that legitimate liturgical diversity still existing at the time in the latin west.

    It almost seems as though the tree was pruned so much that many of the recognizable branches of the tree were gone, but for the stump, and then the lit. nerds grafted new branches fashioned from other places and also non-roman liturgical traditions. At the same time these new branches were modified from their original sources due to their once current liturgical theories and scholarship. (Time and new scholarship has called into question many of these theories). A great example of a newly fashioned branch from a traditional non-roman source in the fourth eucharistic prayer. Eucharistic Prayer IV has ancient non-roman lineage, going back to St. Basil the Great or even before his time, but instead of importing the ancient branch whole and entire and grafting it upon the new rite they were making the same lit. nerds in the committee votes decided it had to be modified to fit a more western style Eucharistic Prayer — i.e. Epiclesis prior to consecration as opposed to after. The same is true of the Eucharistic Prayer II – they added a sanctus where one did not exist in the ancient liturgical source they found it in. They also developed the petitions at the end of the prayer to fit a later model of the development of the Anaphora, and redacted other parts as well to fit some of the ecumenical feelings of the time. I think Bugnini and his ilk tried to fashion a Mass to be all things to all people. It failed because it was the result of too many different lit. nerds with differeing theories voting and compromising with each other, curial opponents and with Pope Paul VI himself who wanted to retain some of the older forms that most of the lit. nerds wanted to chuck. The reason we have a penitential rite at all is that Pope Paul VI wanted it. The penitential rite is itself a novelty as far as the Roman tradition is concerned-in the past it was part of the priest’s preparation and his ministers–it was not a part for the people until the dialogue Mass of the early 20th century). Thus the new tree has not been seemly to behold and has failed the test of an organically developed liturgy becasue the tree and its branches look so misplaced on the old stump that it now occupies. The other reason organic development (slow as it had been up to 1900) became ruptured was the total breakdown in ecclesiastical discipline in the 1960′s and following decades. One of the only reasons I think the Roman Canon actually survived relatively intact to 1969, though one hardly hears it used, was that so many other dumb clerics composed their own locally and highly illegal anaphoras in France, the Netherlends, and elsewhere thereby provoking the papal authority of the 60′s to act. The Pope decided that one Canon in the Roman Rite was not enough. Thus the other three were born and promulgated as a way to end the abuse of all the illegal ones. The only reason I say this history may have actually saved the Roman Canon for the NO was that the lit. nerds wanted to gut it and rearrange it to fit their own pet theories about the prayer and how the middle ages deformed it. EP III is a perfect example of one such theory about a Roman Canon rewrite put into place. Paul VI aslo wanted to preserve the Roman Canon – so he compromised and let there be four EP’s- he only changed it by harmonising the institution narratives and basic consecration formularies between the four while making optional Alcuin of Yorks inserts into the Roman Canon (he also made optional the traditional Roman Saints). Just a few rambling thoughts…

    Of course the NO can organically grow as can the VO, but it must be recognized that the new was so pruned from the old and reshaped that certainly in many instances only the seeds of the two are identical and little else especially where the breakdwon of clerical discipline is at its nadir.

    –Fr. BP

  63. John Polhamus: “I’m envisioning a T-Rex in the narthex of Jurassic Church, wearing a giant triple tiara, with a banner floating down across the screen that says, “When Liturgy Ruled the Church!”"

    ROFL! Thanks for that chuckle to start the day! We do need a T-Rex… er um… Papa Re pretty soon. I want the tiara and the sedia back! They can keep the flabella, however.

  64. Fr. BP: “For those of you who doubt Fr. Z’s tradcred I think you should read his column for the Feb 1st 2007 edition of the Wanderer.”

    To which they should all subscribe.

    “He is well aware of the work of Dr. Pristas.”

    There was also a very good article in First Things by Robert Wilken on this issue.

    “I think the main point of his demonstration that has elicited all this comment is that the Missale Romanum has changed from it’s 1570 form, and so it could change from it’s 1962 form without necessarily destroying the objective liturgical tradition. The difference between 1570 and 1962 being organic growth and development whereas 1962 to 1969 was akin to manufactured change and even rupture (this is Ratzinger’s point btw).”

    Exactly.

    “On the calendar issue – having different saint’s days is not the biggest issue. The more problematic issue is the temporal cycle.”

    Exactly.

  65. Jon says:

    Father,

    Papa RE?!! Shudder.

  66. Jon: Take a few deep breaths. Let me explain the joke. You see…. in Latin rex means “king” and in Italian re means “king”. They are the same… see? So, when the T-Rex was mentioned in conjunction to the Churrrrrch…. see?

    o{];¬)

  67. LF says:

    The temporal cycle is indeed the main problem of lack of “unity” between the two liturgies. Here, the problem is firmly and squarely the result of the Novus Ordo. The whole concept of an Epiphany Sunday instead of the ancient January 6 date is laughable (were it not so tragic). But there is now lack of unity even among Novus Ordoites in the USA: Ascension is not celebrated on the same day in the Novus Ordo even in the same country. The Ascension Sunday fiasco destroys the ancient FIRST Novena, that for the Coming of the Holy Ghost. It eliminates the beautiful liturgy of the Sunday after the Ascension (so much for the modern principle of protecting Sundays).

  68. Jon says:

    Father,

    Thanks for the calmer-downer. I understood. Mine was a joke, too. But then again…sh-sh-shudder!

  69. RBrown says:

    From J Hughes Dunphey: Very simply: organic changes have been made to the Tridentine Latin Mass in the vernacular and until this issue is dealt with head-on in the vernacular Novus Ordo, then the conflict between these two masses shall continue indefinitely. Nothing needs change in the Tridentine Latin Mass, including its calendar. What is wrong with the orgainically sound Mass that Christ created and instituted in the Upper Room? What needs changes, if any of these two masses, it’s indeed the NO.

    1. Cardinal Ratzinger’s point was always that the changes that produced the NO were NOT organic.

    2. How do we know that Christ authored the liturgy? We don’t.

    3. As a matter of fact, we can only say that certain parts are from the Apostles. St Augustine asks the question: How do we know that something in the Church is of Apostolic origin? He gives two criteria: 1) It is found in Scripture, or 2) It is found universally in Church practice.

    Even with the words of institution, there are two formulae that have been handed down–one from Paul/Luke and the other from Matthew/Mark.

  70. fr.franklyn mcafee says:

    Somewhere in the future liturgists will start clamoring to restore the ancient practice of actually celebrating a feast on the day it was originally assigned.The reforms of holy week restored the vigil and actual time of Christ’s passion instead of celebrating them in the morning.So the new reform will put back Ascension Thursday to Thursday and the Epiphany to January 6.It will also restore the holydays of obligation-no more ‘if it is this day no obligation,if it is that day there is obligation’.I always wondered how bishops could be so dumn as to put the easter vigil in the morning and then keep it there with all the oddities of referring to “night”in the morning.Now with the ridiculous change of Ascension Thursday to Sunday (40 days after Easter?) I can understand why.

  71. John Polhamus says:

    Prego, padre!

  72. Maureen says:

    “Somewhere in the future liturgists will start clamoring to restore the ancient practice of actually celebrating a feast on the day it was originally assigned.”

    So you supertraditional guys were all busy yesterday, celebrating the feast of St. Brigit and St. Der-lugdach, right?

    :)

  73. Brian says:

    Thanks Fr. Bp, for the post. very intersting.

  74. Dan Hunter says:

    Yes Maureen.
    God bless you.

  75. Father BP,

    Thank you for your post full of interesting and informative details. Your account certainly sheds some positive light on Paul VI, who catches so much criticism, both from new Mass supporters for having botched for the implementation of the Novus Ordo, and from old Mass supporters for having introduced it at all.

    If, as sometimes claimed, he never like the new Mass personally and therefore continued himself to celebrate the old Mass privately, you provide a plausible reason for his insistence that the Church celebrate the new Mass universally – that is, to save it from worse as a result of the spiral toward utter liturgical chaos that he feared.

    And surely, if he single-handedly saved the Roman Canon for preservation in the new Mass, that service alone should compensate for a multitude of mistakes.

    Incidentally, perhaps others can comment on the extent to which it’s actually true, as you remark in passing, that one “hardly hears the Roman Canon used” nowadays. Thankfully, this is far from true where I am. The pastor of my far-from-conservative geographical parish church-in-the-round (where I attend daily Mass) uses the Roman Canon on all solemnities and principal holy days, throughout the octaves of Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost, frequently on Sundays when he’s not using E.P. III, and usually at least one day each week between Sundays. Since he also gives Eucharistic Prayers II and IV their regular due as well as a couple of the newer ones, we probably wind up hearing the Roman Canon more than any other single E.P. To what extent does this sound unusual?

  76. Garrett says:

    Flabella are really cool! Why don’t you want them back, Father?

  77. Jon says:

    Father Z,

    This is actually material for a new post and thread, so I apologize for interrupting the discussion…

    The latest edition of the pernicious Tablet is online. In it is an essay by our friend from Erie, His Excellency, Bishop (fomerly Monsignor, as I remember him when he used to celebrate Mass at my high school an eon ago) Donald Trautman. Apparently H.E. has scrambled for an international podium via The Tablet in light of the imminent recognitio of the Holy See for the new translation of the Ordinary in the ’02 Missal.

    In the essay, Bishop Trautman says many, well, interesting things, but one thing in particular caught my eye. I’m wondering if he’s inadvertently spilled the beans over an issue you’ve focused much attention on. Here’s the quote:

    “If these texts are to be the prayers of the people, are they owned by them and expressed in their language? The texts include new words of the Creed, such as “CONSUBSTANTIAL (my emphasis) to the Father” and “incarnate of the Virgin Mary”, while words in the various new Collects include “sullied”, “unfeigned”, “ineffable”, “gibbet”, “wrought”, thwart”.”

    Now, to my knowledge, “consubstanial” has not yet been approved. Does His Excellency know something we don’t know?

    The entire article can be found here: http://www.thetablet.co.uk/articles/9298/

  78. Jon,

    At least Bishop Trautman put his finger on the real point of contention in these liturgy wars:

    If these texts are to be the prayers of the people, are they owned by them and expressed in their language?

    The most fundamental issue is not old versus new, Latin versus vernacular. It’s the question of ownership. Does the liturgy belong to the people in the local community (whether parish or diocese or country), to do with as they please? Is it the merely the local community that is worshiping here on earth, or the community of saints participating in the heavenly liturgy? Whose property is it? Cardinal Arinze gave a pretty clear liturgy in his Paris address last October:

    the liturgy is not the property of anyone – neither the celebrant nor the community in which the mysteries are celebrated.

    Given the fact that you go back so far with Bp. Trautman, perhaps it would not be inappropriate for you to pass this answer along to him.

  79. John Polhamus says:

    Henry: Quite so, along with a bell, a book, and a candle, so that Trautperson can excommunicate himself. By the way, Fr. Z, what does ROFL mean? I don’t know these things…I’m old fashioned, one foot in the grave, a ship sinking slowly in the west.

  80. Jon says:

    Henry,

    Of course I meant to type “consubstantial.”

    As to to getting together with His Grace, I thought I’d invite him down to Tennessee for some goodies he couldn’t possibly resist; white hots, chicken wings, and beef on ‘wick (good ol’ Western New York cuisine) whipped up at your place by Chef Zuhlsdorf himself, and the two of you can impress the answer on him in person. Make those wings nice ‘n’ hot, and I’m sure you’ll both have him shouting “Introibo” in no time.

    For my part, I’ll be with the bleu cheese.

  81. Of course I meant to type “consubstantial.”

    That’s ok, Jon. I assumed you were simply illustrating how difficult these weighty words can be for some our word-challenged excellencies, appointed shepherds and elected guardians of faith and liturgy though they may be.

  82. michigancatholic says:

    All of this comes down to authenticity of the rites. The N.O. was fabricated to serve a perceived purpose and the fabrication has been wildly elaborated out here. The compound fabrication that is the current N.O. (and its environs) will sooner or later backfire horribly. Mark my words. In slow motion or fast, in violence or not, it will backfire. God will not be mocked. The nature of truth will not permit it, even within the bounty of God’s mercy.