Fr. Z’s 5 Rules of Engagement for When and If the Motu Proprio Comes

It is time to repost

Fr. Z’s 5 Rules of Engagement for When and If the Motu Proprio Comes:

1) Rejoice because our liturgical life has been enriched, not because "we win".  Everyone wins when the Church’s life is enriched.  This is not a "zero sum game".

2) Do not strut.  Let us be gracious to those who have in the past not been gracious in regard to our "legitimate aspirations".

3) Show genuine Christian joy.  If you want to attract people to what gives you so much consolation and happiness, be inviting and be joyful.  Avoid the sourness some of the more traditional stamp have sadly worn for so long.

4) Be engaged in the whole life of your parishes, especially in works of mercy organized by the same.  If you want the whole Church to benefit from the use of the older liturgy, then you who are shaped by the older form of Mass should be of benefit to the whole Church in concrete terms.

5) If the document doesn’t say everything we might hope for, don’t bitch about it like a whiner.  Speak less of our rights and what we deserve, or what it ought to have been, as if we were our own little popes, and more about our gratitude, gratitude, gratitude for what God gives us.

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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103 Responses to Fr. Z’s 5 Rules of Engagement for When and If the Motu Proprio Comes

  1. Stu says:

    Thanks for posting this again Father.

    Can I still drive around in my Motu Proprio Bandwagon to celebrate?
    I’ll even refrain from using the horns and flashing lights. :)

  2. danphunter1 says:

    Father,
    Why do you have an aversion to someone expressing their joy at the forthcoming Joyful news?

  3. William says:

    Be engaged in the whole life of your parishes

    For some of us, our parish is 100% traditional. In fact, if it were not for the FSSP parish I now attend, I doubt I ever would have had any interest in converting. I investigated the Catholic Church for years, but before I found the FSSP, I found it very difficult to get anyone to tell me exactly what the Church teaches, and I kept experiencing stuff in the various parishes I visited that repelled me. (In Germany, I even had a deacon tell me that the only really important step in joining the Church was registering for the Church tax.)

    Anyway, what are some suggestions for us, whose parish priests are already good and holy, whose churches are beautiful and reverent, and who are blessed to have all the sacraments in the traditional form already? I am planning on making sure that the few “real” (non-traditional) Catholics I know learn about the Motu Proprio and encourage them to ask their pastors to begin a traditional mass. What else can be done?

  4. vox borealis says:

    Uh Danphunter1, is your post a joke of sorts, or did you neglect to read rule number 3?

  5. Fr. Jose says:

    Danphunter1: I believe that Fr. Z refers to Christian joy as opposed to worldly joy. J-O-Y: Jesus first, Others second, Yourself last. In this context there is no room for gloating but ample room for humility.

  6. Augustinus says:

    Well said, Father.

  7. danphunter1 says:

    Vox and Fr.Jose.
    I am expressing my joy in our Supreme Pontiff, in giving us back the full face of our Heritage.
    This is the type of Joy:Jubilation,that I exhibit when I am alone or with my wife.O for Otherwise I would explode with Joy, in keeping it bottled up inside.Y for Ya-goldurned-Hoo for the explosion of said joy as witnessed in the Motu-strut.
    Y’ALL aint gunna keep this swami’s ebbulience under a bushel basket.
    God bless.

  8. The Holy Spirit was speaking through you when you wrote this Father.

    Kudos.

  9. Sweet, the Holy Spirit uses “bad words”. When I use “bitch”, I get endless complaints :) Now I can say, “but Fr. Z. uses it too!!” hehe

    Yes let’s not gloat for “they shall know we are Christians by our love (by our love)”. Let us rather tell them, “be not afraid!” and gather them in ;)

  10. Brian says:

    Well said, Father Z.

    I wouldn’t have a reason to strut much anyhow, since I doubt that many, if any, parishes within reasonable driving distance will suddenly make the 1962 model available. The biggest reason is that most churches can no longer physically support it. The older churches either sawed their altars in half or ripped them out altogether (mine has green plants and the presider’s chair, which by the way also has a lectern — guess they can’t trust an altar server to hold the missal up). The newer ones are Vosko-ized, nearly Protestant “worship spaces.”

    Sorry to whine so much.

  11. Brian: You raise a legitimate concern. Many, far too many, churches have been ruined. They are barely suitable for any form of Mass. This touches a deep problem. The cure will be measured in decades, not simply years. This is another reason why the use of the older form of Mass can be helpful: it will help anchor people in what Holy Mass is, what our traditions are, what our identity is. That must eventually have an effect on architecture, music, … everything.

  12. Theodoricus says:

    That’s right Father. In France and also Belgium they have started with ripping-out the high-altars. Some beautiful 17th century churches have been destroyed.

  13. Brian Crane says:

    Hopefully with a little creativity, even the Voskoized churches can be adapted to accomodate the TLM. I know of a chapel where the altar was placed right up against the edge of the sanctuary step (it is a small sanctuary), so it is not possible to stand in front of it, celebrating ad orientem. However, a group uses the chapel on occasion for the TLM, and they bring a small wooden platform with them that they can place in front of the altar so that they can stand at the proper level (it effectively extends the sanctuary out in front of the altar). Ideal? Perhaps not. But it is a work-around until such time as a proper renovation could be undertaken for the chapel.

  14. Mac McLernon says:

    Hey there was a fabulous video a while back about the transformation of an altar from NO plain-and-dowdy to truly-trad-spectacular

    check it out HERE

  15. Pius VII says:

    Amen to that, Father Z! It’s always good to see Latin Mass devotees who are involved with other stuff in the parish like Knights of Columbus, daily Mass, sodalities, etc. Priests will probably be less inclined to think that we’re just single-”issue” nutjobs, and we’ll probably be able to do more for our cause. You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

    As an aside, Father, at what time do you celebrate Mass in the chapel? I’d love to watch it on the z-cam!

  16. Pius: Usually during the morning, anytime from 7-9 CDT. I don’t have a fixed schedule right now.

  17. 6) Drink quality alcohol in moderation

  18. jaykay says:

    Good rules, and the no crowing is very gentlemanly (oops, I used the dreaded “M” word, albeit in a compound formation… as penance I will force myself to listen to Fra Martino’s “Mass” of Creation)

    Anyway, while I will be delighted when the MP comes out – and may even break into a celebratory pint of Guinness or six – I don’t hold out any great hopes in my own area, unfortunately. While our churches are all mostly unwreckovated (2 have taken away the altar rails but nothing else) and it is possible to celebrate ad orientem even with the new altars (as they thankfully just moved the old mensae forward) the sad thing is that I perceive no actual demand or curiosity on behalf of the general congregations. The issue largely doesn’t get covered in the local press – if it ever does it gets the usual glib-lib sneer-job – and even the Catholic press hasn’t said much. There’s also the issue of education of the clergy. I don’t mean to seem unkind but at the Corpus Christi Benediction even the Bishop (ordained early 60′s) couldn’t chant the “Deus qui nobis sub sacramento…” properly. Still, I suppose at least he tried and maybe that’s a good sign.

  19. Vincenzo says:

    Cathy of Alex wrote:
    “6) Drink quality alcohol in moderation”

  20. Jim says:

    Sage words of advice. I could not agree more. Some of us “trads” can be a bit uncharitable at times. Let us focus on corporal works of mercy, fasting, and unceasing prayer for our bishops and the Holy Father.

  21. moretben says:

    Dear Father

    God bless you. You are right of course. But what you’re asking is inhuman. After all these years? You may make take it to confession afterwards, but I fully intend to crow like the turkey cock who made it through Stephen’s Day.

  22. Vincenzo: I love it! Thanks, I needed that. If you don’t mind, I’m going to post that on my blog image header when the MP is released.

  23. Vincenzo says:

    Cathy of Alex wrote:
    “Vincenzo: I love it! Thanks, I needed that. If you don’t mind, I’m going to post that on my blog image header when the MP is released.”

    Glad you liked it :)

  24. Prof. Basto says:

    Yes, Father. Well spoken.

  25. Christine says:

    Is champagne valid matter?

  26. Geri says:

    Well said, Fr Z.

    “Is champagne valid matter?”

    I never thought of that before! What say the canonists among us? Must it be still?

    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)

  27. RBrown says:

    Is champagne valid matter?

    Why wouldn’t it be?

  28. Kathy says:

    An ingredient in champagne is bubbles. Therefore it ain’t pure grape wine.

    Maybe?

  29. Diane says:

    Fr. Z: I’m sure it will come out in July. Fr. Perrone will be on vacation for the entire month.

  30. Diane: Ask him if he needs someone to sing a Sunday Mass while he is gone.

  31. Jeff says:

    Yes, I well remember my sober thoughts when I heard about the Gaudium Magnum of Joseph Ratzinger being elected Pope. My soul was filled with sympathy for pant-suited nuns and disappointed Catholic Theologians of America. I earnesty tried to think of ways I could witness to them more fully.

    Not really: I jumped in the air and screamed! And danced around for days.

    Hee, hee! Still tickles me when I think of it.

  32. RosieC says:

    William,

    At my parish there is a CCD program, which needs teachers. There is a bereavement committee, which needs good men and women willing to help families who have recently suffered loss. There is the Legion of Mary, which needs good men and women willing to assist the spiritual needs of the parish. The list goes on, and we’re a very small parish.

    Any or all of these organizations would be most grateful for whatever expertise and assistance you could bring to them.

    We have the TLM at our parish, along with the vernacular Mass both in English and Spanish. A lot of the TLM folks drive so far that it i hard for them to participate in these sorts of parish organizations, I think to the detriment of themselves AND the parish in general.

  33. Father Bartoloma says:

    Thanks Fr. Z! This post is always thought provoking and I appreciate it.

  34. Jennifer says:

    Hear hear!

  35. RBrown says:

    An ingredient in champagne is bubbles. Therefore it ain’t pure grape wine.

    Maybe?

    Uh, no.

    Maybe it would be a propos for mass on Jan 1st.

    So, there you have it. Buckled shoes for mass on Thanksgiving, and champagne on Jan 1st.

    Inculturation at its best.

  36. Diane says:

    Fr. Z: Message has been passed along to Fr. Perrone. I know the people of Grotto would enjoy having you. Summer though, does bring less of a crowd with vacations and all. However, I’ve often wondered if the heat has anything to do with it. As I would imagine is the case with St. Agnes, it gets quite hot in the old, un-airconditioned building – a prime opportunity for an act of reparation and penance (a concept rarely preached about these days).

  37. I hope Fr. Z that you are not implying here that we should accept crumbs if the Moto Proprio does not completely free the Tridentine Mass! Rejoice yes, but continue to work for the complete freedom of the Mass of all times.

    By the way, to the person that mentioned the Knights of Columbus, TWELVE OF THOSE SO CALLED KNIGHTS JUST VOTED IN FAVOR OF SODOMITE MARRIAGE IN MASSACHUSETTS! Go to our Website at: crcoa.com to read about this latest “Knights” of Columbus scandal!

    Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
    Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

  38. Frank Saubier says:

    Unfortunately, the Mass being the 1962 version is not enough. It is an empty token to receive from a Church gone rotten to the core. Gloat? How could anyone even think of gloating just because the homosexual, modernist cult has chosen to “throw a bone” to the annoying outsiders.

    Christian Joy will overflow when the Masonic influence is purged and the true church again emerges in triumph. A miracle!

    RECIPIENT OF FR. Z’s SOUR GRAPES AWARD

    The Sour Grapes Award

  39. Wow…and I thought it was good news!

    It is quite possible to transform a “worship space” into a sanctuary. We Byzantines have been doing it for years when the Latins graciously allow us to use their chapels and parishes.

    There is even a place where one can purchase an R.D.I. –

    a Rapid Deployment Iconcostasis!

    http://www.christiandecor.com/IIWP.html

    Perhaps someone should develop a company that does the same for the TLM? (Maybe even a Rood Screen? ;-) )

    http://www.norfolkchurches.co.uk/screens/screens.htm

    http://www.saintedmund.org.uk/section/51

    You could have Western style icons to use as a “backdrop” to the High Altar.

    http://www.stcolumbachurch.org/images/icon2.jpg

    Ideally one would want such things to be permanent, but we need to be thinking in terms of generations. I personally think that once a truly High Liturgy is celebrated, the people will naturally gravitate towards truly sacred art and architecture (cognitive dissonance has a way of grinding people’s nerves…”Wait a second, our sanctuary seems to out of step with our worship…”). That’s how things developed in the early church, anyway.

    God bless,

    Gordo

  40. I would also only add to one of Father’s points that it is a spiritual work of mercy to instruct the ignorant. Mercy should flow from a heart in love with God and neighbor – the two great commandments. Helping your fellow parishioners (including its younger members) understand the positive nature of the restoration will be a great work of mercy.

    And I believe that would preclude one from using the phrase “the homosexual, modernist cult” when catechizing others. ;-)

    Gordo

  41. Fr Justin says:

    Gordo: how about an inflatable reredos? ;-)

  42. Sure, Padre! We can use all the “hot air” the MP will generate from the progressives to inflate them!

    :-) Gordo

  43. Jordan Potter says:

    _”. . . a Church gone rotten to the core. . . . the homosexual, modernist cult . . .”_

    The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew:

    “And I say to you that you art Peter, and on this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.”

    “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to Me . . . Lo, I will be with you, even unto the consummation of the ages. Amen.”

  44. Joseph Fromm says:

    “Come, O Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.” Amen.

  45. Kenneth: the Mass of all times

    Sorry, but the “Mass of all times” is what Holy Church says it is in our times. Mass is not a fly in amber, nor is Holy Church.

  46. Michael says:

    Fr. Z,
    Thanks for all you work, and for this post.
    I think the motu proprio will be just the beginning. we will need ot read carefully, take it in context, and really try to implement Vatican II this time, something that practically nobody I know of, including tradis (of whose number I am one) have really tried. My old spiritual director (and pastoral theology prof at one point) used to say he thought the present liturgical and moral mess was God’s judgement on the foramlism and legalism, the moralism, uncharity, and shallowness of pre-VII Catholics. Let’s learn from this, and try not to repeat the mistakes of the past

    Pax,
    Micahe

  47. Michael: the foramlism and legalism, the moralism, uncharity, and shallowness of pre-VII Catholics.

    pre-VII Catholics, you mean like…

    Bl. Theresa of Calcutta … St. “Padre” Pio … etc. …?

    Let’s be a little careful.

  48. RBrown says:

    My old spiritual director (and pastoral theology prof at one point) used to say he thought the present liturgical and moral mess was God’s judgement on the foramlism and legalism, the moralism, uncharity, and shallowness of pre-VII Catholics.

    It sounds as if the “shallowness of pre-VII” found its way into your post VII pastoral theology prof.

  49. Richard says:

    “Don’t bitch about it like a whiner.”

    Classic, Father.

  50. Father Z, et al,

    Respectfully, I would not completely discount Michael’s spiritual director’s point. It is not completely without foundation to say that a spirit of formalism crept into much of the liturgical life prior to the Council. It should not be applied to ALL Catholics to be sure, but clearly the authentic spirit of worship had not penetrated to an appropriate depth in the hearts of many so much so that practices completely contrary to an authentic spiritual life were not only embraced but actively promoted.

    Those of the TLM movement are rightly cautioned not to be drawn into the same spirit.

    Prior to the Council of Vatican II, the Church was in need of renewal for this and other reasons…and still is. I’m just waiting for Vatican II’s authentic implmentation, both as an Eastern Christian and a Catholic.

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  51. Just to clarify, my reference to “practices completely contrary to an authentic spiritual life were not only embraced but actively promoted” pertains to those sometimes bizarre practices that followed the promulgation of the Ordo of Paul VI – not the Tridentine Liturgy.

    God bless,

    Gordo

  52. Janet says:

    Fr. Z, on a local parish level, how would you advise us ordinary Catholics to petition our pastors for a Latin mass once the MP is issued? And especially for those cases where the Bishop doesn’t currently allow even an indult Latin mass, and where an individual pastor is also opposed? This, I think, is going to be where the difficulty lies in going from a piece of paper to any actual change on a parish level. Any advice on the “nuts and bolts” aspect of bringing the MP into reality where we live?

  53. Dear Father,

    I think Janet has an excellent request. Perhaps you could prepare something on those lines for a regular posting, rather than a combox reply.

    Have a blessed Sunday.

  54. Michael says:

    In case people were not aware, the first ordination in the traditional rite in 40 years was conducted at the St. Louis Cathedral this last friday. Here is the link to some photos and the story.

    http://kansascitycatholic.blogspot.com/2007/06/archbishop-burke-of-saint-louis-mo.html

    The tide is slowly turning.

  55. RBrown says:

    Respectfully, I would not completely discount Michael’s spiritual director’s point. It is not completely without foundation to say that a spirit of formalism crept into much of the liturgical life prior to the Council. It should not be applied to ALL Catholics to be sure, but clearly the authentic spirit of worship had not penetrated to an appropriate depth in the hearts of many so much so that practices completely contrary to an authentic spiritual life were not only embraced but actively promoted.

    I don’t disagree, and I have often written here against the By-the-Numbers Counter Reformation Church.

    But when formalism disappeared, it was replaced by noisy, sloppy, do-your-own-thing emotionalism and the Dinner Theatre approach of the Performer-Celebrant.

  56. Gordo: I would not completely discount Michael’s spiritual director’s point. It is not completely without foundation…

    I did not discount what Michael wrote. I did not indicate that it was “without foundation”.

    I said, “be a little careful”.

  57. Yes, you are right, Father. I read too much into what was said. Apologies… (“Love means always having to say your sorry.”)

    RBrown, true enough! I’m in Japan right now and attended a little “Dinner Theater” NO liturgy at the local RC parish. I generally love coming here because the preaching is so very good…the liturgical music is often, well, what you said. (I shall never forget the Hallelujah Chorus that was sung one year. It was an attempt to bring some sacred music into the worship, however, it came out as “Ha-re-re-rah! Ha-re-re-rah!” I kid you not! I gripped the pew in front of me tand lowered my head trying not to shake it from my laughter!)

    The priest, who was from the Philippines, chanted much of the Mass. It was quite moving – except when the choir broke in with Andrew Lloyd Weber. It was a true study in contrast, and I believe that the Latin Church is in for more of it, especially after the TLM is implemented with Gregorian being given pride of place. Hopefully it will bring about systemic change in sacred music as well!

    Lord have mercy!

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  58. Tim Hallett says:

    Hey Gordo! Where in Japan are you? The ICKSP has a seminarian subdeacon from Japan. Hope he gets sent home after he is done with seminary. The Japanese church desperately needs him. Though gross numbers of Catholics have increased, this is mostly due to Phillipino guest workers. The number of native Japanese Catholics has plummeted in the past 40 years.

  59. Dear Father

    What about us, the faithful “permanent” (read “married”) Deacons? I love the Sacred Liturgy. Whether a PROPERLY celebrated Novus Ordo, Tridentine or Byzantine Liturgy! There is room for a true diversity within BOTH orthodoxy and orthopraxy. Sadly, some “traditionalists” are seeing us as an “aberation”. We are not. We are ordained clerics.

    Wouldn’t it be IRONIC if the reinstitution of the tridentine Mass was an impetus for what I personally believe is inevitable, the re-opening of the order of priest to “viri probati” , older and tested married men.

    The Roman Rite, and its Sacramental theology, has a real challenge. It has “elevated” the Deacon to a sacramental minister by making him an “ordinary minister” of Baptism and marriage.

    The Easterners see Deacons as Clerics but NOT as Sacramental ministers. This has been explained by the fact that in the East, the theology of those two Sacraments is different. Baptism, as was the more ancient practice, is not administered in isolation for the child. They are Baptized, Chrismated and communicated, all of the Sacraments of Initiation are given together. Thus, a Deacon cannot administer this Sacrament. It is CLEARLY a priestly function.

    In the East, Catholic and Orthodox, Marriage is CONFERRED not by the couple on each other (thus making the priest or deacon, outside of a Mass, a mere witness) but BY THE PRIEST! Why? Because Marriage truly and ontologically is the Nuptial Mystery, a participation in the Trinitarian communion and prophetic sign of the Church as Sacrament!

    So the question arises. What ground does the Deacon have for actually being an ordinary minister of Baptism or Marriage in the West?

    Please understand, I embrace the call and appreciate it. It is within the authority of the Church which has spoken! However, i have not seen this really examine.

    There are some who will cite the fact that lay people may Baptize in emergencies. So, is that the ground for Baptisms by Deacons? Are Deacons thus kind of “elevated” lay people? No.That is an insult to the beauty of the lay vocation and a misunderstanding of ordained ministry.

    Then, what about marriage?

    In this day and age when we Christians DESPERATELY need to elevate the vocational dimension of Christian Marriage and emphasize its Sacramentality, the older I get, the more I believe the Easterners have it right!

    I think this will all become a serious issue in the next ten years. I am THRILLED about the Motus Propio. I grew up serving the Tridentine Mass.

    However, I also support the opening of priesthood to married men.Not because I see it as a matter of some misguided and self centered notion of “rights” but as a matter of theological consistency!

    Such an opening, a which is a return to the ancient practice, would NOT threaten celibacy. The Eastern witness confirms this. Celibacy is a prophetic sign and wonderful gift. It participates in the Nuptial Mystery in an IMMEDIATE rather than mediated way and is a visible witness of the Kingdom.

    Rev Mr Keith A Fournier

  60. Zach says:

    Fr. Z,

    That’s some great advice. Can I copy that and put it on my blog? If so, please contact me through my blog (linked).

  61. Father Deacon Keith,

    Glory to Jesus Christ!

    All I can add is a hearty AMEN to what you have said here. The notion of a presiding diaconate, however well intended by the Second Vatican Council, was clearly not fully a restoration but rather something of an aberration of Holy Tradition, adding all sorts of presidential responsibilities that were not really part of his original kenotic, not sacerdotal, ministry. (It was done, I believe, primarily to assist the missions which needed native clergy, and yet the Latin mandate of celibacy for the presbyterate inhibitted vocations since most missions were to territories with a strong history of marriage – even polygamy! …now there is belief in marriage!) If you trace the history of the Diaconate, the end of the Golden Age came as the deacons began to presume to take upon themselves the liturgical (rights) and rites of a higher ordo, that of presbyter. The Council of Nicea sought to set things aright, however, and the ministry of deacon, in the West at least, became only a transitional stepping stone to the “ominvorous presbyterate”. The Council of Trent resurrected the idea of a restored, permanent ministry of deacon in the West as part of the Catholic Reformation, but it was not until the era of Pius XII that we see a true resurgence of interest which culminated in the Second Vatican Council and eventual “restoration” by Pope Paul.

    Since I am discerning a call to diaconate within the Byzantine tradition, I would still very much like to pursue bi-ritual faculties to assist with the TLM, and wondered how the Tridentine rite utilizes the ministry of deacon. The NO clearly attempts to turn the deacon into something of a “priest, second class” or a glorified layman, of which he is neither, as
    you well know. Often in the assembly where a Latin deacon is present, he is not even permitted to exercise his ordo fully by offering the intercessions! If he is truly the “eyes and the ears” of the bishop, he is close to the needs of the community and it falls to his exercise of the Levitical priesthood to offer the intentions, as well as to read the Holy Gospel, and to recieve the Holy Gifts from the faithful and bring them to the altar for preparation (in Constantinople, the Great Entrance was purely a function of the diaconate, as was the Prothesis!) The deacon makes fruitful the Shepherding – the Word – of the bishop in the life of the congregation. He is truly in an intercessory role between the laity and the bishop and/or the sacerdotal priesthood, especially through his ministry of caritas. If he is required to preside at so many different sacramental celebrations, how is he to properly exercise his ordo?

    As far as the relaxation of the celibacy requirement for ordaining married men to the presbyterate in the Latin Church, I believe Rome recently said no to this. This is, IMHO, unfortunate especially considering the fact that Paul’s letter to Timothy exhorts his young bishop disciple to regard how a man has managed his own household as a father for consideration to be ordainined bishop and deacon. What you indicate – ordination of men of virtue late in life, especially deacons – is very much in keeping with that venerable tradition, and was recently supported by Christopher Cardinal Schonborn. An older man’s children can be a witness to the quality of his fathering. Grace, after all, builds upon and transfigures our nature.

    Returning to the ministry of deacon in the Tridentine Mass, I am curious as well.Clearly there are a large number of permanent deacons in North America who can assist with this liturgical renewal. What would be their ministry in the liturgy of the Mass, as well as with the celebration of the other sacraments?

    God bless your vital ministry, Father!

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  62. Dear “Gordo”

    How very encouraging your comment was.

    I am very fortunate. I serve in a faithful parish where I exercise a full diaconate. I also encourage you to pursue your hoped for “bi-ritual” status. I serve as a Melkite Deacon with the approval of the beloved retired Eparch John Elya, though it has been too many years since I have served the beautiful Divine Liturgy

    Please keep me in your prayers. I am a “later life” PhD candidate in Theology and former lawyer. I believe this issue is critical. My work considers the late Servant of God John Paul II and Olivier Clement, the great orthodox lay theologian

    Deacon

  63. Dan O says:

    I just returned from a 50 mile trip to attend an Tridentine Mass. I am generally a liberal who loves Latin and loves praying in Latin (Lauds, Compline, etc.). I had not been to an indult Mass and just wanted to see how it would go. I remember the Tridentine Mass from my youth. From this experience, I would encourage posters to this blog not to get too excited about the motu proprio changing the entire Catholic church. I encountered a rote performance with a sermon that was more like an unintelligible train of thought monologue. The Mass had no music. The priest and servers were in a race to see who could say the prayers at the foot of the altar the fastest. Indeed it was the sacrifice of Calvary unbloodied and Jesus was made truly present, but if this is what we find multiplied in our parishes when the motu proprio is promulgated, it will not bring a new revival, rather it may be more of a death knell.

    One positive point of the past few decades is trying to make people more aware of what they are praying (by use of the vernacular). I suspect that younger priests who try the Tridentine rite will add a bit of ‘emotion’ to the prayers, even in Latin. I know that is anathema in this blog, but it may make the Mass more prayerful than the one I just attended this Sunday

    Dan O

  64. Dear Dan

    I understand. The overwhelming interest is really in the restoration of the sacred, the real “mystery” of the Divine Liturgy. That can be experienced in in a Novus Ordo Liturgy, (properly celebrated),in the Byzantine Liturgy and in the Tridentine Mass. Acess to all of these as options within the fullness of Catholic faith and Life presupposes that the faithful and the Priests (and Deacons) enter fully into the mystery and that the faithful are truly invited to participate as well as properly catechized to understand the heart of the mystery.

    LEX ORANDI, LEX CEDENDI, LEX VIVENDI

    The indult will soon come. THEN the real work begins. A work of a Catholic restoration

    Deacon Keith Fournier

  65. zathar says:

    Dan,

    The quality of the sermon (or lack thereof) has absolutely NOTHING to do with the rite itself.

    The absence of music at a low mass should not be surprising to someone who “grew up” with the TM.

    Are you absolutely sure you could read the minds of the priest and servers in that they were “racing” to get through the prayers at the foot of the altar as fast as possible? To pray slowly or quickly is not an indication of praying well, either way.

    In short, none of us are in a position to judge the “prayerfulness” of a Mass, except in our own case.

  66. Zathar,

    You wrote: “In short, none of us are in a position to judge the “prayerfulness” of a Mass, except in our own case.”

    I disagree. Every liturgy has its own distinctive ethos, often determined by the
    practices of the priest and clergy in synergy with the choir and congregation.

    If the Mass Dan O. attended felt rushed, was spoken (as a Byzantine, this is COMPLETELY perplexing to me…how can worship be a hymn of praise when it is spoken? “He who sings prays twice.” as Augustine said.), and offered little in terms of an inspiring kerygma, I do not see it outside of the bounds of propriety to say it was not exactly a prayerful experience.

    Dan O.’s onservation is correct, IMHO: if this is what is multiplied in parishes, then it will be a failed restoration. The restoration of the 1962 Missal needs to be done according to the authentic intentions and teachings of the Second Vatican Council.

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  67. Sean says:

    Dan O: I encountered a rote performance with a sermon that was more like an unintelligible train of thought monologue. The Mass had no music. The priest and servers were in a race to see who could say the prayers at the foot of the altar the fastest. Indeed it was the sacrifice of Calvary unbloodied and Jesus was made truly present, but if this is what we find multiplied in our parishes when the motu proprio is promulgated, it will not bring a new revival, rather it may be more of a death knell

    Rote performance, you say that like it was a bad thing. There are plenty of new masses with no music and bad sermons so what of them? The prayers at the foot of the altar appear to have been said so what is the problem, not enough over-indulgent enunciation and emoting for your taste?

  68. zathar says:

    Gordo,

    Dan may not have felt that the mass he attended helped him to pray, but that does not mean that:
    a. the priest and servers were not praying
    b. Dan could not offer up his discomfort as a prayer
    c. Dan shouldn’t rise above what he PERCIEVES to be an unprayerful experience and pray the Mass himself.

    I do not want to judge Dan himself in anyway, but his COMMENT strikes me as typical of the “What do I get out of it?” mentality that has been fed for the past 40 years, a mentality that can only be truly answered by, “What have I put into it?”

  69. Dear “Gordo” the Byzantine

    You are a treasure. Your responses reveal a deep interior life, sound theology and pastoral normalcy…. a rare combination.

    Please write me and tell me how I can contact you.

    Deacon Fournier

  70. Dan O says:

    The absence of music at a low mass should not be surprising to someone who “grew up” with the TM. Comment by Zather

    Perhaps my memory is a bit rusty, or I grew up in a lucky parish, but I always remember at least a “Holy God we praise thy Name” or a couple of verses of “Immaculate Mary” even at weekday Masses. The only truly quiet Masses in our parish seemed to be the private Masses celebrated by priests on the side altars which I served regularly.

    Are you absolutely sure you could read the minds of the priest and servers in that they were “racing” to get through the prayers at the foot of the altar as fast as possible?

    No, I couldn’t read their minds, I meant only to comment on the way it seemed to me and make an implication of how I felt it would be perceived by John and Jane Communicant if they dropped in on one of the many Tridentine Masses that may spring up with the impending motu proprio. I suspect the priest and servers were indeed holy, prayerful men, if a bit hyper.

    Dan O

  71. Father Deacon,

    I am humbled by your post. I sent you an e-mail at your website e-mail address.

    God bless your ministry!

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  72. Dan,

    There was not necessarily anything wrong with the low Mass you evidently attended, but it was certainly anomalistic among contemporary indult Masses. I have not personally seen such a TLM at any Sunday Mass in the past decade. Even at the low Mass I attended this morning there was plenty of organ music.

    The indult Mass I attend regularly is a sung Mass with all responses and the Ordinary prayers sung by both people and the propers chanted by the choir. In other words, pretty much the diametric opposite of what you describe. I attend Novus Ordo Masses much more frequently, and practically never see such “full and conscious participation” there as at a typical TLM.

    Last Friday I attended the 3 hour 54 minute solemn pontifical Mass described at
    http://thenewliturgicalmovement.blogspot.com/2007/06/kansas-city-catholic-archbishop-burke.html
    As I commented there, I could only “think of those 10th century Slav emissaries who were sent to observe the Divine Liturgy in the Haggia Sophia in Constantinople, and reported back to their king that it was so glorious they hardly knew whether they were in heaven or still on earth. Surely, not only the chanting of the ICK schola but the music — provided by what I (a visitor from out of town) took to be the St. Louis Cathedral-Basilica choir and organist — was beyond anything I’ve ever heard in prominent televised Masses.”

    Of course this was not typical either. But in recent years I’ve attended a number of solemn high Masses closer to it than to what you described.

    So before rushing to hasty judgment, it would be good for you to attend an indult high Mass of the type that’s perhaps still more common now than in the old days you remember. Perhaps it’s true that, as some wag suggested, Vatican II has helped the TLM more than the NOM.

  73. Dear “Gordo”

    I have not received an E-Mail. Please write to

    deaconfournier@comcast.net

  74. RC says:

    Fr. Z., did anyone ever figure out how that phrase “legitimate aspirations” arose? It’s not actually a quote from _Ecclesia Dei adflicta_, which simply urges respect for the “aspirations” (appetitiones) of traditionalists, without suggesting that some of them are not legitimate.

  75. Jeff says:

    Dan, Gordo, and Henry Edwards:

    I rather like the ethos of the spoken Low Mass. As Michael Davies pointed out, THIS was the form of Mass that the Catholic people knew and were devoted to before Vatican Two. This was the Mass that was the focus of holiness for saints and for factory workers who got up every morning an hour and a half early so they could offer up the Sacrifice of the Cross each and every day.

    There is such a thing as a rosary gabbled at top speed. Not much fun. There is such a thing as a rosary prayed with aching and lugubrious “expression”, every word “meant”, every comma an intense spiritual experience. Lord save us!

    There is also such a thing as a normal rosary, prayed by people who don’t make a fuss and who know the prayers WELL and recite them without forced “concentration”, as a sort of tide of devotion in which something behind the words emerges and takes possession of the soul.

    Thank goodness there is no such thing as a chanted rosary with incense and lustrations!

    I believe in liturgical development. Gregorian Chant is great and Gothic is groovy, but thank Heaven that we have Haydn Masses and cotton-candy-colored Rococo churches, too! I think the Low Mass is a beautiful and blessed thing. It’s more like that rosary that I mentioned than it is like the marvellous Byzantine Liturgies. There is plenty of room for both.

    I just heard Msgr. Harbert say Low Mass at old St. Mary’s in Washington. He knows his Latin and he knows the prayers and they go past at a pretty good clip. His delivery is unforced and crisp and I never get the feeling he is trying to be Holy Hector with Eyes Raised to Heaven in Ecstasy. Nor do I get the feeling he’s thinking of getting back to his Sunday morning TV shows.

    I get the feeling that it’s Mass just like Catholics have been doing it for several centuries. Goldilocks said it best: “This one is juuuuust riiiiight!” And I come away, not ravished, but edified.

  76. RBrown says:

    Wouldn’t it be IRONIC if the reinstitution of the tridentine Mass was an impetus for what I personally believe is inevitable, the re-opening of the order of priest to “viri probati” , older and tested married men.
    Comment by Rev. Mr. Keith A. Fournier

    Why do you think it inevitable?

  77. RBrown says:

    I just heard Msgr. Harbert say Low Mass at old St. Mary’s in Washington. He knows his Latin and he knows the prayers and they go past at a pretty good clip. His delivery is unforced and crisp and I never get the feeling he is trying to be Holy Hector with Eyes Raised to Heaven in Ecstasy. Nor do I get the feeling he’s thinking of getting back to his Sunday morning TV shows.
    Comment by Jeff

    Excellent point. The celebrant who says mass very, very slowly, assuming he’s not recently ordained or new to Latin liturgy, may be doing it for sentimental reasons.

  78. Jeff: “This one is juuuuust riiiiight!” And I come away, not ravished, but edified.

    Precisely the thought my wife and I shared yesterday (Sunday) morning after attending the 8 am low Mass at St. Francis de Sales Oratory in St. Louis. Thursday night we had attended a glittering solemn high Mass of ICK community preparation for the ordinations. Then Friday the 4-hour pontifical solemn ordination Mass itself, a soaring but perhaps thankfully once in a lifetime experience. And Saturday morning the first solemn high Mass of one of the newly ordained priests.

    When we arrived at church Sunday morning at 7:15 am planning to say the morning office before Mass, three priests were at different early points in silent private Masses at the main high altar and at the Our Lady and St. Joseph side altars, so we were able to adore Our Lord at three separate double elevations within 10 minutes. The parish low Mass that followed was the “low Mass of the ages” that you describe so movingly.

    We agreed afterwards that our personal participation in this low Mass had somehow been more fully active and conscious that at either of the magnificent performance Masses of the preceding days. And that if we lived in St. Louis the 8 am Sunday low Mass would be the one we’d attend regularly, rather than the 10 am (frequently solemn) high Mass at St. Francis de Sales.

  79. Christopher Sarsfield says:

    With regard to marriage in Eastern theology and the priest being the minister of the Sacrament, the Church of Rome and the Eastern Rites united to the Church of Rome do not recognize this theology. I too was under this mistaken impression after hearing a talk by an Eastern Rite priest. After this I met a priest who served on an annulment tribunal for an Eastern Rite Church, and when I mentioned this teaching, he told me that it was a popular opinion among Eastern Rite theologians, but was not recognized in any way by the Church. The Eastern Code of Canon Law makes it clear that the couple is the minister of the Sacrament. The Western and Eastern Code on marriage is identical, and the lack of intention on the part of the ministers (the couple) invalidates a marriage in the same way it does in the West. The intention of the priest witnessing the marriage is unimportant. Now I never looked up the Code to verify this, and I would be open to correction, but since the priest served on an Eastern Rite marriage tribunal, I assumed he knew what he was talking about.

  80. Sean says:

    RBrown: The celebrant who says mass very, very slowly, assuming he’s not recently ordained or new to Latin liturgy, may be doing it for sentimental reasons

    I find the whole area of the spoken delivery of the mass to be much neglected in discussions of old v new, reform of the reform, etc. For me the slow, mock-portentious delivery is associated exclusively with the new mass. Together with the rather stiffly upright/hands at side manner in which the communion in the hand crowd comport themselves I feel it contributes greatly to conferring the appearance of a protestant Anglican service upon the new mass. I also find this delivery to run counter to the ‘blurred’ way that a human actually comprehends speech, the thread of meaning being obscured by the ‘discreteness’ of the words. It is the opposite extreme to mumbling.

    Emoting, on the other hand, is just plain weird.

  81. I rather like the ethos of the spoken Low Mass. As Michael Davies pointed out, THIS was the form of Mass that the Catholic people knew and were devoted to before Vatican Two. This was the Mass that was the focus of holiness for saints and for factory workers who got up every morning an hour and a half early so they could offer up the Sacrifice of the Cross each and every day.

    Pope Benedict on Low Mass…

    In one revealing speech to Catholic traditionalists in 1998, he said bluntly that the old “low Mass,” with its whispered prayers at the altar and its silent congregation, “was not what liturgy should be, which is why it was not painful for many people” when it disappeared.

    http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0701785.htm

  82. The notion of a presiding diaconate, however well intended by the Second Vatican Council, was clearly not fully a restoration but rather something of an aberration of Holy Tradition…

    Gordo, well, at least you cut them some “they were well-intended” slack in your definitive declaration that when it comes to Tradition, the Church really doesn’t get it right.

    So what if the Bishops at Council were guided by The Holy Spirit? That doesn’t mean they know what Tradition really is.

    “The Church got it wrong.”

    Since 1965, that is one old Tradition I have seen restored. In spades.

  83. RBrown says:

    I find the whole area of the spoken delivery of the mass to be much neglected in discussions of old v new, reform of the reform, etc. For me the slow, mock-portentious delivery is associated exclusively with the new mass. Together with the rather stiffly upright/hands at side manner in which the communion in the hand crowd comport themselves I feel it contributes greatly to conferring the appearance of a protestant Anglican service upon the new mass. I also find this delivery to run counter to the ‘blurred’ way that a human actually comprehends speech, the thread of meaning being obscured by the ‘discreteness’ of the words. It is the opposite extreme to mumbling.

    I have attended private, whispered 1962 low masses when the celebrant goes very slowly (too slowly secondo me). As I said, sometimes it’s a case of a newly ordained priest or one new to the 1962 Missal. It also might be what St John of the Cross calls Spiritual Gluttony.

    But then again, maybe the celebrant is simply someone who moves slowly.

  84. Fr. Foley says:

    Reverend and dear Father,
    Thank you for your well thought out and well presented rules. The rules apply
    to more than just to hoped for (prayed for) MP. God bless!
    In XP,
    FPF

  85. Christopher,

    An interesting question.

    Here is how the Catechism of the Catholic Church describes the distinct approaches to the Sacrament of Matrimony (referred to as the “Mystery of Crowning” in the East):

    “1623 According to Latin tradition, the spouses as ministers of Christ’s grace mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the tradition of the Eastern Churches, the priests (bishops or presbyters) are witnesses to the mutual consent given by the spouses, but for the validity of the sacrament their blessing is also necessary.”

    As with most things when it comes to East and West, the differences are slight nuances, rather than fundamental differences. The issue at the marriage tribunal level is that the Eastern Churches in communion with Rome follow the Latin system. Our traditional practice (whether it is legitimate or not is another matter) is the granting of ecclesiastical divorce. This was done, I believe, up until the 17th or 18th century. So basically our canonical practice vis-a-vis the granting of “annulments” does not really align perfectly with our theology. That is not really a basis for saying that we are not fully Eastern in our theology of Crowning. The rites themselves express perfectly what is celebrated and by whom, all of which has been blessed by Rome.

    I would not recommend defining our theology of marriage based on canonical practice when it breaks down.

    God bless,

    Gordo

  86. I am not Spartacus,

    Thanks for your note.

    Let me state, for the record, that I believe Vatican II to be a true ecumenical council and would even say that it was “inspired” by the Holy Spirit (obviously not in the sense of Biblical inspiration).

    That being said, the “restoration” of the diaconate to the Latin Church was not fully a “restoration” of the practice of that ancient and venerable office in every respect. one could argue that the additional responsibilities granted to the diaconate was more of a pastoral accomodation to the needs of the missions. Native Latin clergy in the missions, properly ordained as deacons, could preside at the marriages of Catholics. They could also celebrate the sacraments of baptism, as an official minister of the Church. But what was a pastoral accomodation to the missions has become the norm in non-mission territories, like North America. How many deacons see their role primarily as baptizing and blessing marriages? Presidential responsibility is contrary to the kenotic spirit of the diaconate. Baptizing and blessing marriage is really the proper domain of the presbyterate, with the deacon assisting in a myriad of ways.

    There are really two dimensions or modalities of fatherhood in the human family. The first dimension is its life giving and generational aspect. The second dimension or modality of fatherhood is in its formative aspect. The presbyter stands really in the place of the bishop as the spiritual father of the parish. His fatherhood is principally sacerdotal – he begets offspring sacramentally and pastorally. The deacon’s fatherhood (as an extension of the bishop’s) is principally kenotic, forming the souls of men through caritas, making effective the homily or word of the bishop in the life of the congregation. This is why, I believe, Ignatius of Antioch sees the Deacon as the Icon of Christ – the alter Christus, and not the presbyter. He is the Word that goes forth from the Father (the bishop) as His emissary, to make fruitful his fathering in the hearts and minds of the faithful. This is also why, IMHO, Ignatius says that he cannot imagine a Catholic Church without all three ministries in operation. Both modalities of fatherhood are essential to any functioning family. In a human family (especially traditional cultures) , you can see this with fathers, first-born sons and second-born sons. The bishop is the father, the presbyter is like the first-born, exercising the sacerdotal responsibilities associated with primogeniture, and the deacon is like the 2nd born, serving the fatherhood exercised by the father and the 1st born. (Chronologically the deacon is fathered first, but ontologically he is second to the presbyter.)

    Another way of looking at this is to say that the proper domain of the presbyterate is “sanctifying grace”, where as the proper domain of the diaconate is “actual grace”. Obviously, not a hard and fast rule, but it may help to describe their complimentary function as the “two hands” of the bishop in the local congregation.

    To return to the point, presidential responsibilities, however canonically delegated, usurp the exercise of primogeniture by the first-born – the presbyter – in the “household of faith”, Family of God. This explains the tension prior to Nicea, when deacons presumed to take upon themselves the responsibilities of a higher ordo. As in traditional families, it creates conflict. (I see this tension in my own family. My oldest son is 16, but struggles with a form of autism. It has fallen to my youngest son to act like “the older brother”, which I think he sometimes resents. My oldest feels this and tries to assert his role as the elder son sometimes saying – “Hey, I’m the big brother! You should not be telling me what to do!”) Obviously in modern families, the exercise of primogeniture is all but unheard of, but I believe it to be built into our make-up.

    Incidentally, the rite of the “patriarchal blessing” took the form of laying on of hands. This conferred the spiritual power and authority of fatherhood to the son to govern, serve and protect the needs and well-being of the family. We see this ancient rite continued in the Church through ordination.

    So, in summary, the council fathers did not “get it wrong”, but I believe it to be wrong to say that what was recommended with the additional responsibilties proper to the role of presbyter was not fully a restoration of the ancient order.

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  87. I wrote:

    “So, in summary, the council fathers did not “get it wrong”, but I believe it to be wrong to say that what was recommended with the additional responsibilties proper to the role of presbyter was not fully a restoration of the ancient order.”

    What I meant to say (cannot edit) was:

    “So, in summary, the council fathers did not “get it wrong”, but I believe it to be wrong to say that what was recommended with the additional responsibilties proper to the role of presbyter was a full restoration of the ancient order.”

    Sorry!

    Regards,

    Gordo

  88. Regarding slow, silent celebrations of the Mass…

    I have a priest friend of mine who is a deeply spiritual man. But he celebrates
    Mass like a 45 on 33! (You younger folks might not get that one…)

    He is certainly well intended, but for me it is altogether distracting and actually detracts from the worship. The priest presides over the congregation in liturgical worship to LEAD us in OUR PRAYER, not just his own. His ordination makes him, in the words of Metropolitan John Zizoulas, an “ecclesial person”. In his presidential role, it is no longer about his own experience, it is about the spiritual family of the assembly (and the mother with six squirming kiddos in the pew who may be mentally in Hawaii at that moment…and NOT in the 9th Heaven!)

    And AMEN to what the Pope said about silent Masses. Others may like them for sentimental or devotional reasons, but they do not reflect any ancient tradition of liturgical worship….at least not Christian worship.

    Gordo

  89. Jeff says:

    Gordo:

    I’m not sure what you mean by “what the Pope said about silent masses.” He’s publishing a Motu Proprio that will provide for a whole heckuva lot more of them! And they are quite popular among priests and people.

    But really, it’s kinda rich for a Byzantine Catholic to be saying stuff like “don’t reflect ancient tradition.” There was a day when that could have been said about icons.

    But traditions develop. The spoken low mass developed in the West developed in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries and the faithful became attached to it. It’s not an “abuse” and it wasn’t the result of an evil plot.

    That’s plenty ancient enough for me. Why should that bother you? You’re a Byzantine. Mind your own beeswax! ;)

  90. Jeff,

    Not sure what you mean about the reference to icons. Yes, the development of a theology of the image occured over centuries, but sacred images have always been part of the Catholic patrimony. And the orthodox in the Byzantine East suffered martyrdom in defense of these images against the heterodoxy of imperial policy.

    So how is that rich?

    I did not assert that the silent spoken Mass was part of an evil plot. But I would hardly equate the development of the slow, spoken but barely audible Mass to the development of the theology of the sacred icons. At least one has a solid basis in doctrine, and you can guess which one that is.

    Perhaps you don’t realize that our little beehive contains members of both the Eastern and Western churches. It is the nature of communion that what happens to one affects the other. Like it or not, we’re family. And where two or more family members gather, there are at least six opinions between them.

    Blessings bro,

    Gordo

  91. Jeff says:

    What I mean, Gordo, is that there is no evidence of the use of icons in the earliest centuries of the Church. Saying “always” doesn’t change that. The practice of using them, like other customs, grew up over time. My point is: traditions develop. Just because you can’t find something in the first century AD doesn’t mean it’s inferior.

    Sure what happens in one rite affects all Catholics. That doesn’t mean that it’s up to Latins to tell Ruthenians how to run their liturgy. Their is a legitimate autonomy of rite and if I think the Eastern rites would be better served by the Melkites adopting the more ancient unleavened bread–or the Maronites adopting the Eastern practice of leavened bread–it’s still really not for me to say. I might wish daily Mass were more common or that they admitted statues in their churches more frequently. So what? It’s up to them.

    I’m not unhappy with New Rite masses in which all the prayers are audible. I quite enjoy them. And I see their advantages. But there’s something to be said for doing things the way all your great-great-great-greatgrandfathers did them. Like Low Mass with sotto voce prayers.

    Should Byzantine Rite Catholics get a vote in whether we can do that? Nope. Not a one. Whether it goes back to the first century or not, that’s our tradition and it nourished generations of Catholics and it’s perfectly legitimate. Those who don’t like it should remove bonnet and empty of bees. They can have their florid Eastern stuff with the never-ending singing; no one’s stopping them.

    As for me–I am a sober Roman and I like my spoken, muttered Mass. Deo gratias!

    Okay, I leave you alone Bro, I done spoke my piece!

  92. Jeff,

    Thanks for clarifying.

    I certainly would not presume that I had a voice in what was done in the Latin Church. I can only share my opinion or take a position. But ultimately we are self-governing churches with our own distinctive traditions and you are correct – that should be respected and preserved.

    That being said, in the development of liturgy, there was a tremendous amount of cross-fertilization early on. No tradition is a completely hermetically sealed package!

    I’m personally not opposed to sotto voce prayers at all. I think they certainly have a place in the Latin Mass and actually can enhance the sense of solemnity (a defining characteristic, I believe, of the Latin tradition). We Easterns don’t tend to have silence in our worship, as you well observed. In fact, we often have two or three prayers going on at once! I like that, but then again I grew up in a family of 8 kiddos. :-)

    My only objection is to the notion that the entire liturgy should be celebrated sotto voce. There I do believe as a Catholic, who sometimes has to attend worship in a Latin Church, I can voice my concern. This is not a matter of imposing Byzantine principles on Latin worship – there are some universals at stake, IMHO. Again, this is just a view from the pew. Clearly I’m not asking for a vote on the matter!

    As to icons, images were present in the catacombs and there are early moasics in Christian synagogues that bear witness to the use of symbols and icons. That being said, the understanding of the role of the image developed in concert with Christological developments . IN fact, the bulk of the argumentation regarding images were seen largely as an extension of the Christological debates. (For a good read on this point, see Christoph Cardinal Sconborn’s “God’s Human Face”. Well worth the purchase and the investment of time!) Doctrine and praxis certainly develop, but as you say, just because it is ancient, doen’t make it good. (A lesson I learned from Msgr. Richard Schuler, of blessed memory.)

    Got to get buzzzzzzy. Back to my beekeeping… :-)

    Gordo

  93. Nathan says:

    +JMJ+

    Another report out of Rome—ADISTA is reporting a 9 July date for the Motu Proprio:

    IMMINENTE IL “MOTU PROPRIO” CHE DÀ
    IL VIA LIBERA ALLA MESSA TRIDENTINA

    33932. CITTÀ DEL VATICANO-ADISTA. Il Motu proprio di Benedetto XVI riguardante la liberalizzazione della messa tridentina di San Pio V, sul quale si vocifera da mesi (v. Adista nn. 65, 73, 77, 85/06 e 3, 23/07), sarà pubblicato entro il 9 luglio. Dopo una serie di “falsi allarmi”, che davano il documento in uscita già prima di Pasqua, ora il “quotidiano online sul Pontificato di Benedetto XVI” Petrus, capitanato dal giornalista Gianluca Barile, annuncia in “esclusiva” che esso “è pronto, sta per essere tradotto in diverse lingue e sarà pubblicato prima della partenza di Benedetto XVI per le vacanze estive. Il testo – si legge nell’articolo di Petrus – è già stato firmato dal pontefice, che ha anche redatto una lunga lista esplicativa, di carattere teologico, ‘indirizzata a tutti i vescovi del mondo’, così come si può leggere nell’introduzione, perché possano accogliere con serenità e pazienza questo documento”. Il Motu proprio, continua l’articolo, sarà presentato in conferenza stampa dai cardinali Francis Arinze, Darío Castrillón Hoyos e Julián Herranz.Il ritardo nella pubblicazione del testo, spiega Petrus, sarebbe dovuto a “forti resistenze in alcuni settori del clero”, specialmente in Francia. A confermare questa volta la notizia della imminente uscita è, sempre nell’articolo in questione, mons. Nicola Bux, teologo amico del papa, collaboratore della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede, docente alla Facoltà Teologica pugliese nonché autore dell’Instrumentum laboris per il Sinodo sull’Eucaristia, ma anche, in passato, accusato di plagio (v. Adista n. 67/05): “Direi che è questione di giorni”, ha detto.
    A far pensare che l’annuncio di Petrus sia verosimile è anche un accenno sulla questione fatto dal segretario di Stato vaticano card. Tarcisio Bertone in un’ampia intervista sul viaggio del papa ad Aparecida, rilasciata ad Avvenire il 3 giugno scorso. Ad una domanda conclusiva sul Motu proprio, Bertone ha risposto: “Credo che non si dovrà aspettare molto per vederlo pubblicato. Il papa è personalmente interessato affinché questo avvenga. Lo spiegherà in una sua lettera di accompagnamento, sperando in una serena ricezione”. (ludovica eugenio)

    In Christ,

  94. Nathan says:

    +JMJ

    Oops, I forgot proper attribution. H/T to AngelQueen, for the news report.

    In Christ,

  95. Gordo. I know you are passionate about this subject but the way you frame the issue can provoke controversy when there is no need for it.

    http://www.vatican.va/archive/catechism/p2s2c3a6.htm

    The Catechism is quite clear, and convincing, when it comes to the Diaconate being restored by Vatican two.

    1571 Since the Second Vatican Council the Latin Church has restored the diaconate “as a proper and permanent rank of the hierarchy,”58 while the Churches of the East had always maintained it. This permanent diaconate, which can be conferred on married men, constitutes an important enrichment for the Church’s mission. Indeed it is appropriate and useful that men who carry out a truly diaconal ministry in the Church, whether in its liturgical and pastoral life or whether in its social and charitable works, should “be strengthened by the imposition of hands which has come down from the apostles. They would be more closely bound to the altar and their ministry would be made more fruitful through the sacramental grace of the diaconate.”

    It is the Church herself which decides what is and isn’t tradition, not me or thee.

    That said, I wish you uncountable blessings. The Church is always in need of bright, passionate, committed men.

  96. I am not Spartacus,

    I certainly do not disagree at all with what the Catechism details here. The diaconate was restored as a permanent place in the hierarchy, as opposed to having only a transitional role in the Latin Church. I am also grateful for the growing prominence of the ministry of deacon in the common life of the Church. And, just to clarify, I am not saying that the bishops did not have the authority in council (as well as Pope Paul) to delegate those presidential responsibilities.

    Perhaps my use of the term “aberration” is strong. “Novel” may be more accurate?

    I do think it is legitimate to express concern, however, about presidential responsibilities being assigned to the diaconate…especially when those responsibilities were not traditionally ascribed to the ministry of deacon. I am not the only one who has expressed this, obviously, nor is it merely a criticism from the East. My concern is that the deacon who is swamped with presidential duties will find himself hard pressed to exercise those aspects of diaconal ministry tthat are truly reflective of his vital ministry in the parish.

    We will probably just have to agree to disagree on this point. But I thank you for your kind words and encouragement.

    I still would like to see how the ministry of deacon will be exercised in the TLM once the MP is promulgated…soon, God willing.

    In ICXC,

    Gordo

  97. Athanasius says:

    Maybe since you’ve given the sour grapes award I won’t get one, but I feel bound by charity to mention that I criticized your 5 steps on my blog: Response to Fr. Z I don’t like broad siding anyone. God bless,

  98. Athanasius: I criticized your 5 steps on my blog

    Okay!

    I consider myself advised.

    PS: Rules, not Steps.

  99. “Novel” may be more accurate?

    In a sense, yes. When Holy Mother Church restores anything from Tradition/tradition it gets it right. Holy Mother Church understands what is necessary to be retained within that Tradition/tradition and that which is not crucial to retain within that Tradition/tradition.

    So, it seems to me one can not reasonably expect to have all particular points of Tradition/tradition reestablished as though one were reproducing a picture/photograph of the past.

    A photograph/picture represents one particular time period in the past.

    It that is what constituted Tradition/tradition then the Church moving through time would be forever stuck in the past.

    In any event, I have no problem with your other ideas as those might be the matter out of which Holy Mother Church will make future reforms as necessary.

  100. Father Z.

    Can you explain why six Protestant Ministers were brought in to help write the Mass of the Catholic Church? Why the two Catholic Cardinals, Casaroli and Bugnini, who were on the Commission were highly suspected of being Masons, and last but not least, why the Norvus Ordo more closely resembles the Mass of Cranmer than the Mass of St. Pius V?

    I once asked the late Archbishop Nicholas Elko who was a participant in the Council, who had been responsible for eliminating the Excorcism prayer of St. Michael at the end of the Mass, and he told me that nobody he knew knew the answer to that and they were trying to find out. St. Padre Pio greatly lamented the elimination of this prayer of Excorcism.

    Did you know that Blessed Katherine of Emmerich wrote that there would be a time when the Last Gospel of John would no longer be recited at the end of the Mass and that this would be a time of great upheaval in the Church?

    While I am at it, how can Tony Blaire possibly enter the Church without public penance for his very public sins of advocating abortion and sodomy rights?

    God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
    Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

  101. Kenneth: Protestant ministers did not “write the Mass”. Bugnini was never a cardinal. The Novus Ordo does not resemble Cranmer’s liturgy “more” than than the older Mass.

    I think it will be more effective to get things right and avoid exaggeration if you want to make an attack on the new Mass.

    Also, it would be a great service to us all if you were able to post some book and page number for a reference about St. “Padre” Pio lamenting the loss of that prayer. The same applies to Bl. Catherine Emmerich about the last Gospel.

    Very often people make claims about what saints have said but rarely is any documentation given. I have heard these before and have never actually seen a good citation. That sort of makes the claim that they said these things less than sturdy. If you could provide some chapter and verse on these, it would be very helpful for a lot of people.

    Regarding Mr. Blair, perhaps it would be better to ask that question after he is formally received into the Church.

  102. Father Z.

    Are you denying that the Commission consisted of six Protestant Ministers, Cardinal Casaroli and Archbishop Bugnini?

    You are correct on Bugnini, I believe he was an Archbishop.

    By the way, when I went to Catholic Schools, we were taught that Protestant Ministers, although they may be very good and holy men, are techinically at least in heresy!

    Many such as the late Michael Davies and others would disagree with you that the Norvus Ordo is not more in line with the Mass of Cranmer than the Mass of St. Pius V. Probably the late Cardinal Ottaviani would disagree as well.

    I heard a priest from the pulpit tell us how he had been shocked when he read in the writing of Blessed Ann Katherine Emmerich that which I stated in the prior entry.

    I will try to find again the quote from St. Padre Pio, but I don’t have a lot of time to do such research. I know I read it in one of the books about him. If I find it again, I will certainly let you know.

    Regarding Blaire,if he is allowed to enter the Church without repentance of his positions on abortion and homosexuality, etc. etc. It will be like slapping the face of those who have manned the ramparts against these evils for such a long time,including loss of limb, finances, and positions for these causes.

    God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
    Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

  103. Kenneth: This is all off topic.

    Protestent ministers did not write the Novus Ordo. The late Michael Davies was free to argue whatever he wished. I knew him and have read his books. While I respect him and much of what he wrote, he is not always entirely convincing.

    Your last comments were a patchwork of isuses not having much to do with this blog entry. So, since the comments seem to have run their course here, see y’around.