There is a biting piece at Petrus you might want to read, in my translation. The semi-anonymous author doesn’t hide his contempt for the former Master of Ceremonies, His Excellency Most Reverend Piero Marini, titular archbishop of Martirano.
The interesting thing in the article, after you filter out the sarcasm, is that there was a sort of mutiny in the Office of Pontifical Ceremonies, entered via the second loggia of the Apostolic Palace.
Piero Marini’s closest collaborators asked to return to the offices of the Curia they had originally been pulled from for their ceremony roles. I don’t know if this was really a mutiny or not. It might be, and maybe we can find a verification of this, that it is the custom in that office for everyone to resign so as to make way for a new regime. I don’t know.
Maybe those guys just didn’t want to learn the older form of Holy Mass?
In any event, this is interesting stuff.
After Marini – No Deluge
by Father Gregorio
CITTÀ DEL VATICANO – The chill that dominated the Office of Pontifical Liturgical Ceremonies in these last days was palpable: Whoever was present at the meeting between Msgr. Piero Marini (transferred to head the Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses) and Msgr. Guido Marini, the new Master of Ceremonies, refers to a very short and formal handing off of the baton, also the not very clear appointments the predecessor used as a justification for his being in a hurry to leave the office.
On Thursday evening, for the inauguration of the exhibit on the Apocalypse, Msgr. Piero Marini (see the photo) appear extremely short-tempered and irritated, having finally reached the countdown for his departure.
Msgr. Guido Marini, the successor of Piero, has never been mysterious about his own thought on liturgical quesitons. He was ordained by Giuseppe Card. Siri, one of the last princes of the Church who, when pontificating in the Cathedral of San Lorenzo, habitually used the cappamagna, red shoes and golden fibbie, the cardinal’s cappello; he was one of the many priests of the Archdiocese of Genoa who loved Latin, Gregorian chant, ritual dignity; he was the Master of Ceremonies for Archbishops Tarcisio Bertone and Angelo Bagnasco, who are also very attentive to liturgical decorum.
On the other hand, the homonymous Piero is known for his aversion to all that recalls, even vaguely, the ritual tradition of the papal court: he preferred to borrow tribal rituals from African cultures, offertory dances in front of the Pope, liturgies made up on a little table in the name of inculturation, over solemn romanità; and one can never forget his choreographic approach according to which liturgy is a show and, as such, can be created and adapted: an approach in obvious opposition to the older rite, defined contemptuously as "old liturgy", the fruit of "encrustations" and "accumulations of sediment". In practice, he was the exact opposite of the thought of Benedict XVI.
Perhaps for this reason, in his own panegyric sent at the beginning of October to the Roman Curia, Piero Marini – who wrote specifically to the cardinals and prelates to offer a final account of his own work as Master of Ceremonies for Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI – wanted to underscore the freedom he enjoyed under Karol Wojtyla, as if to lament that he hadn’t had a completely free hand with the reigning Pontiff.
It is certain that the sudden return to the original offices where they came from on the part of Msgr. Piero Marini’s closest collaborators (who after his transfer to be head from the Eucharistic Congresses requested to be able to return to the offices in the Curia where they had come from, so as to say that they didn’t accept their new chief, namely Guido Marini) ought to stress the difference from his successor and represent a kind of quiet mutiny in the ranks of the Office of Liturgical Ceremonies of the Supreme Pontiff.
That operation, however will certainly make the Msgr. Guido Marini’s installation easier, avoiding any acts of sabotage aimed at him. But the message of the predecessor was very clear: "Après moi, le déluge… After me, the deluge".
The Augustinians, who have the care of the papal sacristy, will have a big task in the next few days: after twenty years during which any sort of traditional vestment was forbidden, many rooms will be unlocked, the doors of many vestment cases opened wide. And, since with Msgr. Piero Marini precious sacred vestments of the papal treasury were banished to give way to a panoply of questionable creations, one might suppose that in the coming weeks the former will be brought out into the light to make room for the latter. And there won’t even be any need for mothballs: moths don’t like plastic.