Card. Ricard: “the prayer could be changed if it caused difficulties with Jews”

 Let’s go back to His Excellency Reverendissmo Mons. Luca Brandolini, Bishop of Sora-Aquino-Pontecorvo.   I tip my biretta to Diogenes for the additional article.  o{]:¬\

My emphases and comments.

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23 Responses to Card. Ricard: “the prayer could be changed if it caused difficulties with Jews”

  1. Michael says:

    So it seems what people are really upset about is Church doctrine concerning the role of the Church in salvation, and they’re angry that the Pope is promoting a liturgy that unabashedly sets forth that doctrine in its prayers.

    I think a lot of people seem to think, if people stop being taught certain doctrines, they’ll eventually go away. So if people stop praying for the conversion of the Jews, then eventually the Church will teach that Jews are already saved.

    The entire issue raises a lot of questions about ecumenical dialoque with the Jews, and begs the question, if dialogue with non-Christians isn’t about bringing such groups closer to Christ, what’s the point? Ecumenism with non-Christians, I believe, is supposed to be more than just maintaining friendly relations and making people feel like their just fine right where they are.

  2. Pius VII says:

    Wait, I thought the prayer about the “perfidis Iudaeis” (is that right?) was removed and wasn’t in the 1962 Missal. Are they mad about the 1962 prayer because it prays for the Jews’ conversion?

  3. Adam says:

    What is this new document that is being issued on Tuesday about the Church? Really??

  4. “Pius”:

    Most of the complaints printed in the press have been about the prayer for conversion that exists in the 1962 version. A few news stories have stated (incorrectly) that the “perfidious” would still be there.

    Regarding the Latin: yes, the prayer was “pro perfidis Iudaeis”, but if you are going to refer to this phrase without the preposition you would switch it to the nominative “perfidi Iudaei”. But of course, even better would be “illi Iudaei, dilecti a Deo, seniores fratri nostri”!

  5. Jamie Frater says:

    I thought that John XXIII removed the perfidious comment from his missal but it was still permitted to be used. I have been to at least one Traditional Good Friday Mass that retained the prayer. To add insult to injury (tongue in cheek as I don’t believe there is anything wrong with the prayer) it is said in the middle of a large number of prayers praying for conversions, and you genuflect during each stage except in the prayer for the conversion of the Jews (because the Jews knelt in mockery of Christ). It seems fitting to me to retain the prayers as we are praying for the conversion of all those whom Christ died for on the day in which we remember His death.

  6. Jordan Potter says:

    Jamie said: I have been to at least one Traditional Good Friday Mass that retained the prayer.

    It’s not in the 1962 Missal, which is the edition authorised for use, but some traditionalist priests have incorrectly been using older editions of the Missal.

    As for not kneeling at that point, it was the Roman soldiers who knelt in mockery of Jesus, not the Jews. I think it is more likely that the not kneeling when praying for the Jews has to do with the old “teaching of contempt,” in which the Jewish people’s rejection of their own Messiah is seen as such an enormity that a prayer for their conversion is seen as something that God might not be very likely to listen to. Thus, the prayer says that we pray “even for the Jews.” “Yes, folks, it’s hard to believe, but even Jews can be saved.” That sort of attitude is something the Church is well to be rid of. I still prefer the older prayer for the conversion of the Jewish people, since it is clearer and more direct than the new prayer, but the “even for the Jews” stuff is still a bit problematic.

    But then, folks like Abe Foxman would be upset about any prayer that directly asked God to bring the Jewish people into the Catholic Church. For them it’s not just the “perfidious Jews” and “even for the Jews” terminology that is offensive — even more, it’s simply the claim that all men, even Jews, are called to enter the Catholic Church that is the most offensive thing. It’s the claim that Jesus is their Messiah that they don’t like to hear.

  7. dcs says:

    Jordan Potter writes:
    It’s not in the 1962 Missal, which is the edition authorised for use, but some traditionalist priests have incorrectly been using older editions of the Missal.

    In some cases priests are using older Missals because that is what is they have on hand. Why get rid of a Missal? If the changes aren’t too extensive, one can just make annotations on an older one. Throwing liturgical goods away (and I’m sure you’re not advocating this, Jordan) is a thoroughly modern idea. (I despise the fact that so many parishes make use of disposable missalettes which are thrown out whenever the liturgical season changes.)

    Also, some orders (the Institute of Christ the King, for example) have permission to use the pre-Pius XII Holy Week rites. I assume this would include the older Prayer for the Jews, but someone who assists at ICRSS Masses would have to confirm that.

    I once assisted at a Good Friday Mass of the Presanctified where the priest started to say the Prayer for the Conversion of the Jews and said “perfidis”. He stopped, collected himself, and started over. I don’t know if it’s because the topic was on his mind and he slipped, or because he was using an older Missal. This would have been in 2002 or 2003.

  8. Michael says:

    If “even for the jews” expresses a “teaching of contempt” (was that standard Catholic teaching before VII?) Why wouldn’t Pope John XXIII removed that as well.

  9. Breier says:

    Jordan,

    “Even for”? Isn’t it rather “also for?” Can someone break out the Latin?

  10. Michael says:

    It seems to me that a phrase like “even the Jews” implies that the Jews are less worthy of salvation than the other non-Catholics mentioned. Why would this be? It would seem to go against Nastra Aetate for two reasons: it is holding the Jewish people culpable for the death of Christ making them less worthy of Christ’s mercy, and extemds this culpability to the modern Jews for whom it prays. Definitely a dillema here.

    Anyone else have another explanation for why we pray, “even the Jew” instead of just “the Jews”?

  11. dcs: Also, some orders (the Institute of Christ the King, for example) have permission to use the pre-Pius XII Holy Week rites. I assume this would include the older Prayer for the Jews, but someone who assists at ICRSS Masses would have to confirm that.

    I think I must now ask for proof of that.

  12. Cerimoniere says:

    As has been said, the issue isn’t to do with the physical book that’s on the altar, it’s to do with the words the priest actually says; it’s perfectly possible to annotate an older volume, or simply remember the amendments. It is true that there are priests who forget or “forget” to change the relevant couple of words on Good Friday. There is no doubt that the form of Holy Week presently authorized for use under the Ecclesia Dei/Summorum Pontificum regime excludes these words.

    As to the ICRSS having “permission” to use the pre-1955 forms: I wonder. The Commission may have given them somethnig analogous to what they have given the French abbeys, but their authority to do that has hitherto been dubious. I have even heard it said that they rely on “Quo Primum” for their authority to do this!

    The Holy Father may perhaps now give the Commission more explicit faculties in this area, as Summorum indicates. Certainly, most traditionalists that I know feel that the Pius XII reforms are largely misguided in ways that closely prefigure later reforms. It is quite possible that the Holy See may now be generous in granting the use of the traditional Holy Week ceremonies, in the interests of making more of the Church’s historical treasures available for use, but there is no reason why that could not be done with the sole exception of the changed prayer for the Jews.

  13. Cerimoniere says:

    “Etiam” means both “even” and “also.” I would certainly render it “also” in this context! (Also, incidentally, in the context where “Summorum” says that the readings may be read “etiam” in the vernacular…)

    As to Father’s question on the Institute: I have no idea whether they have permission for what they do. They do certainly use the pre-1955 Holy Week services in large part, as the photographs on their website show. I believe they don’t use them in full (not all twelve prophecies, for example). However, I don’t know whether they use the unamended text of the prayer for the Jews. I imagine that they might now consider using Bd. John XXIII’s form of that in the light of recent events!

  14. Ioannes says:

    We also pray for heretics, schismatics, pagans, muslims, atheists, etc. But nobody seems to be offended at that. Why?

    Is there only one group of people who has achieved the right to claim eternal victimhood?

  15. Atlantic says:

    I would really appreciate it if someone could somewhere post the full text of all the 1962 Good Friday intercessions. Yesterday, I found (in Wikipedia) the (alleged) text of the 1955 intercessions for heretics and schismatics, Jews, and pagans. If anything, the prayer for the Jews was the least…er…possibly offensive..

  16. Joe says:

    I’m surprised we haven’t yet seen sentences like this in the secular news accounts:
    “Pope Ratzinger, a former Hitler youth, has endorsed an anti-Semitic prayer…”

  17. In my 1964 Roman Missal (which is the “hybrid Mass” and, I think, is basically the 1962 Missal with some English), the text says “Oremus et pro Iudaeis…” (“Let et us also pray for the Jews …”)

    Unfortunately, all my other “traditional” texts are pre 1962 and all say “Iudaeis perfidis”.
    Of course, when it comes to Jesus Christ, even a Jew would have to admit they don’t believe in Him (in His divinity).

    But then another question is: if the 1962 Missal doesn’t have “Iudaeis perfidis,” why would bishops be so foolish as to open their mouths without checking first? It just makes them look even more foolish once they are easily shown to be wrong and would pretty much discredit any future observations by Their Excellencies.

    Funny how these bishops rail against “blind faith” to these texts, but then expect it when they themselves say something.

  18. RBrown says:

    But then another question is: if the 1962 Missal doesn’t have “Iudaeis perfidis,” why would bishops be so foolish as to open their mouths without checking first? It just makes them look even more foolish once they are easily shown to be wrong and would pretty much discredit any future observations by Their Excellencies.

    I think the comment a few days ago about a teenager making various excuses for not doing things is operative here. Many have become fat, dumb, and happy in the present situation and don’t want to change.

    One other point: The Jews’ problem is not only with the Christian faith. Although it’s not explicit, the NT all but says that a Jew who rejects the Messiah also rejects Israel.

  19. Shoshiru Honda says:

    (The Vatican will issue another text on Tuesday expected to declare Roman Catholicism the only true church of Jesus Christ, a statement that could anger Protestants. [You can almost hear the saliva drip drip dripping on the keyboards.]
    I cut and pasted this comment. My reaction is “Hooray for Pope Benedict XVI” if this document is published too. After all, it is true, NO?
    As for the reaction of others who might take offense,and become indignant , we should not care.
    I can here their hissy fits already.
    Boo Hoo !! : )

  20. Michael says:

    Johannes,
    I hate to say it, but I think part of the motivation behind objecting to this prayers is that the Jews, or their leaders at least, prefer to see themselves as victims of the larger sociey even when they aren’t. Look for example at Pius XII. No man did more to help the Jews than he, and yet holocaust museums and all my Jewish aquaintences insist on calling him a Nazi. What other reason would they have for denying objective, historical facts to make the man look evil.

  21. Sean says:

    Anger jews and protestants? I guess I will just have to live with that.

  22. JohnK says:

    Fr. Z – The MP permits use of the old missals with one important note – “may do so on any day with the exception of the Easter Triduum”. Given that the ‘questionable’ prayer is on Good Friday, doesn’t this whole issue seem to be an enormous red herring?

  23. Patrick says:

    With due respect to all of you that have commented thus far, I prefer to focus on the words and quite possibly the hubris of Msgr. Brandolini,

    “”It’s a day of mourning, not just for me but for the many people who worked for the Second Vatican Council. A reform for which many people worked, with great sacrifice and only inspired by the desire to renew the Church, has now been cancelled”

    Where has the dear Bishop been lo these 40 years? Renewal is one thing, skipping down the garden path to perdition is another. The Church has lost a great deal while the experimenters had their day. I recall the post Vatican II “spirit” and chaos here in the States back in the Sixteis and Seventies, with the 80’s and 90’s being only marginally better. And this Bishop can stand their and weep for a mismanaged reform, which in many cases was carried out by vindictive and elitest cadres of what amounted to raving Iconoclasts and Modernists?

    I remember the feeling of loss and abandonment after V II, I wish that I could have shared it with the Bishop then, perhaps it would mitigate his feelings today to have experienced what many of us experienced and lost.

    All I can say is Deo Gratia for the gift we have been given this 7 July and three cheers for Good Pope Benedict.