L’Occidentale: Why Pope Benedict would want to derestrict the “Tridentine” Mass

In the interesting Italian newssite L’Occidentale there is a piece by Pietro de Marco about why Pope Benedict XVI would want to derestrict the older form of Mass.

It is as if this fellow had been reading my articles.  Actually, the similiarity between his ideas and mine are probably due to the fact that we are working from the same sources, which are certainly, knowledge of the older liturgy and the writings of Papa Ratzinger.

Here is a brief summary of the reasons de Marco thinks Pope Benedict would want to derestrict the older Mass.  They are fleshed out with my own observations.  I have other reasons beyond de Marco’s, but here are de Marco’s with my own additions.

a) An uncommon language gives an impression of the rite’s antiquity.  In turn this supports a perception of continuity with the past. 

b) Prayer "turned toward the Lord", because of the operating principle lex orandi lex credendi will stimulate relfection about what is sacred and redirect us to the first condition of Mass, namely, that it be a sacrificium.  It is not the behavior of the congregation that counts.  The High Priest is the one who is in action.  This reattachment to the sense of mysterium will work against the pragmatic and activist liturgical attitude prevalent today.  Mass is mystery and sacrifice, not spectaculum.

c) The Blessed Sacrament is at the center.  Recovering this sense of presence will aid a dialogue with the "God with us", which has long been a point of reflection for Joseph Ratzinger in years past, and today.

Again, these are de Marco’s reasons supplimented with my own thought. 

I have a couple other reasons which I am working to formulate for an upcoming article.

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15 Responses to L’Occidentale: Why Pope Benedict would want to derestrict the “Tridentine” Mass

  1. danphunter1 says:

    God teach’s and speaks to us. We are silent and listen.
    We have nothing to say to Him.We just subsume our will to His.

  2. (d) The age of drums, electric guitars, and Bernadette Farrell ditties will mercifully draw to a close.

  3. tara says:

    “It is not the behavior of the congregation that counts.” Father, I agree that the Mass first and foremost is a sacrificium. However, who is the sacrificuim for? The behavior of the congregation does count, who is it that is trying to recover the sense of “God with us” but the congregation?

  4. It means that in Church design both rites/usages should have to be acknowledged.
    Also, Diocesan Liturgy Offices will have to take into account both rites/usages.
    “Liturgists” will have to have familiarity with both rites/usages.
    Both rites/usages will legitimately be taught in seminaries.

  5. It means that in Church design both rites/usages should have to be acknowledged.
    Also, Diocesan Liturgy Offices will have to take into account both rites/usages.
    “Liturgists” will have to have familiarity with both rites/usages.
    Both rites/usages will legitimately be taught in seminaries.

  6. Dan…We have nothing to say to Him

    I think I know what you mean but I don’t think you wrote what you intended.

    Surely as a redeemed Christian you say the Confiteor, Kyrie, Gloria, Creed, etc

  7. danphunter1 says:

    I am not Spartacus,
    Those prayers you mention are not our words,but are the Church’s words which are Gods words.
    What I meant to say was: we do not contribute anything of our own subjectiveness.It is the Church speaking, and our individual silence aquiescing to Gods Creation, and not anything we could contribute.All we have any personal control over is our free will which listens,or refuses to listen to the voice of the Almighty.
    God bless you.

  8. Dan. Oh,ok. I get ya.

    However, I do think we redeemed Christians “talk” to God in the way we pray/participate at Mass. The PART of the Mass – Petition, Adoration, Reparation, Thanksgiving – that really is our speaking/ acting as members of the priesthood of the laity which, because the way our offerings are swept-up into the Pluperfect Sacrifice of the New Covenant, are made acceptable as our sacrifices etc etc is what I was thinking but not writing.

    I really don’t think we disagree.

    I do think that because of all that has happened to us the past forty-plus years, some of us are quite alert to anything that even hints at being untoward -even when there is no real cause to do so.

    IOW, I think we are in agreement.

    God Bless you, brother

  9. danphunter1 says:

    I am not Spartacus,
    Fair enough.Better safe than sorry.
    PS. In the book,”Iota Unum”,by Amerio, there is an enlightening chapter on “Dialogue”,it begins on page 347 and Romano differentiates between the new version of dialogue and the Catholic version of same.
    The two are very different.
    God bless.

  10. Fermín says:

    La Misa tradicional nos ha inspirado siempre una unción espiritual más profunda por ese silencio sagrado en que nos comunicamos con Dios, cosa a que los instrumentos de cuerda que se usan en la misa actualmente no contribuyen.

  11. Therese Warmus says:

    “Mass is mystery and sacrifice, not spectaculum.”

    Oh, Father: this is exactly what is needed. We must refocus our attention on the Lord. I once heard a Franciscan priest say, “But the people have always faced in the right direction.”

    Now, the “celebrant” will face the tabernacle also.

  12. Therese: Now, the “celebrant” will face the tabernacle also.

    Unless, of course, there is no tabernacle at the altar.

  13. Thomas says:

    Father, all of those look sound to me, because Pope Benedict desires reform in the way Mass according to the 1970 Missal is celebrated. But I see this also as part of his project to refute unambiguously and undeniably the idea that Vatican II represented a radical break with the past – the “hermeneutic of discontinuity” he has long criticized.

    So long as there are those who feel like the Mass – the source and summit of the Christian life – has undergone a radical break with the past, the Pope won’t be able to convince them with any amount of words, if they even hear him (most people don’t read or hear what the pope says anyway). But derestricting the old Missal would be a symbolic action that speaks more powerfully than the most eloquent speech and is impossible to miss or ignore. When the “hermeneutic of discontinuity” is gone from the culture, there also will not be so much resistance to the liturgical reforms he wants.

  14. Thomas says:

    (i.e. the reforms in how he wants to see in the celebration of Mass according to the 1970 Missal.)

  15. Thomas: the Pope won’t be able to convince them with any amount of words,

    There are a number of people who have already chosen not to be convinced no matter what the Pope does.