More Second Confiteor thoughts

You might remember that I closed the comments on the rather explosive entry where some people had trouble with self-editing.  Instead, I invited e-mail messages. 

Here is one of them (my emphases):

Hi Father Z,

Love the blog, visit daily.

This will be the fifth year I’ve been attending at our archdiocese’s EF parish. I’ve experienced five different FSSP priests, one who was quite old, the others ranging in ages from late 20’s to late 50’s (I estimate). None of them have ever asked for or had a second Confiteor just before Communion. So I don’t think having one said is a mandate by the Fraternity. These guys are pretty much “by the book” priests, as far as liturgy goes. I follow the liturgy very closely with my hand missal, so I would have noticed if there was a second Confiteor. Also I’m an “Old Guy” so I remember the old days and don’t remember it being a custom when I was a server in the 1962-67 timeframe, either.

I admire your patience in moderating the discussions. That’s gotta be tough!

Interesting.   So, the practice within the FSSP does not seem to be monolithic in regard to the Second Confiteor.

This item came in from a seminarian at a US seminary who wants to be anonymous:

Father,

Given the to do at your blog over the second confiteor, which is something that has often bothered me, I thought that a clarification of rubrics and customs might be in order. However, I didn’t want to unduly start up the debate again by posting to your newest addition. By my reading of the following, I come to the same conlcusion as you. Primarily, my reason for this is that the arguments for the proponents in general are faulty (e.g. the rubrics are silent when in fact they are not silent cf. R.G. VIII I 503) and the application of their arguments is contrary to Mediator Dei and the general protection against innovation in the liturgy that is most necessary in the here and now.

Another seminarian wrote:

I was reading your blog (it has become more or less a daily affair) when I came across the following point that was put across by someone else:

2. It does seem that the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter insists on this [a confiteor before Holy Communion]  [That sounds right.  I am not sure, but I think the ICK does also.]

I raised the same question before to a priest as to the stand of the Fraternity regarding the 2nd confiteor. The reply that I received was that in places where the local custom is to have it, the Fraternity will include the 2nd confiteor. However, wherever it is not part of the local custom, it will not be included.

With the two Apostolates in the Diocese of Sydney, one makes use of the 2nd confiteor, the other does not.

One long-time participant here whom I repect very much had this for me:

I must tell you frankly that I think this WDTPRS concentration on the 2nd confiteor issue is ill-advised because

– The contention it generates is not good for the TLM.  [Hmm.. I think clarity is good for the TLM.]

– The low level of a thread like yesterday’s does you and WDTPRS no good. [Amen, brother.]

– It is not fair to the FSSP which, whatever any current PECD staffer may say or think, would not do it without authorization it believes valid.  [First, they are big boys.  Second, let's push to get some clarity.]

In any event, would you think that, if the priestly communities with principal custody of the TLM apparently have approval for the 2nd confiteor — allegedly going back to Cardinal Mayer — then this provides a clue as to the eventual "organic development" of the matter.

The last point is especially interesting.   First, I must add that I worked for Card. Mayer in the PCED and I have no memory of such a thing.  Second, this got me thinking about an organic development in the direction of the Novus Ordo: It would be wonderful to used the old Confiteor and "penance rite" in the Novus Ordo.  I think that would be "organic" and in the right direction.   But until that is approved, I would only do the old Confiteor if I slipped and forgot to do the new one.  I wouldn’t do it on purpose until it is approved for use.

Finally, MG sent the following (slightly edited):

Fr. Z,
 

# 503 of the General Rubrics of the Roman Missal states (it is in the Missale Romanum decreed on June 23, 1962):
 
503. Quoties sancta Communio infra Missam
distribuitur, celebrans, sumpto sacratissimo Sanguine,
omissis confessione et absolutione, dictis
tamen Ecce Agnus Dei et ter Domine, non sum dignus,
immediate ad distributionem sanctae Eucharistiae
procedit.
 
I think this should resolve the issue with the Confiteor before the communion of the faithful.

503.  When Holy Communion is distributed within Mass, the celebrant, once the Most Holy Blood has been consumed, the confession and absolution having been omitted, Ecce Agnus Dei and Domine, non sum dignus having been said thrice, procedes immediately to the distribution of the Holy Eucharist.

Pretty clear, that.

So, in the notes I posted there are points of interest.  Among them are

  • local custom
  • organic development
  • explicit rubrics 
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142 Responses to More Second Confiteor thoughts

  1. Peter Karl T. Perkins says:

    I am certain that Michael Davies did some research on this question of the second (really, the third!) Confiteor. He concluded that it was at least optional. I quoted him on this on a list about two years ago. I know I have it all in my notes somewhere. I would appreciate it if someone who has it on hand would dig it up. He published the comments before he died, possibly in the “Remnant”.

    P.K.T.P.

  2. K says:

    Just an addition re the FSSP’s practice. I came back from a visit to their seminary in Wigratzbad the other day and can report that none of the Masses I went to there used the second confiteor (except the pontifical High Mass with conferring minor orders). I’m not sure how far this is can be seen as an official, normative practice but the usage of their first seminary could reasonably be expected to carry some weight.

  3. sigil7 says:

    I was an FSSP seminarian for a few years and I never saw the 2nd Confiteor used outside of pontifical Masses.

  4. W says:

    I have seen the second Confiteor exactly one time at an FSSP Mass – That was on September 14 at The Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, AL. Otherwise, never.

  5. Jon says:

    Father,

    First, last evening I had the pleasure of attending weekday Mass at our FSSP apostolate. There it was, as it is every day,the Second Confiteor and minor Absolution.

    Second, as you know, I’m here in Pennsylvania. The FSSP North American HQ is right up the road so to speak in Scranton. Over the last three years we’ve had at least half a dozen FSSP priests offer Mass for us at one time or another. NEVER was the Second Confiteor omitted. It was done each time. I also have opportunity to attend Mass in Scranton quite often, at St. Gregory’s and St. Michael’s, the FSSP home ground if you will, and every time I’ve seen the Second Confiteor.

    Not only that, but I’ve also had FSSP priests to my home for dinner, where we’ve discussed the Second Confiteor. Each of them has told me the same thing, first, that permission was given by Cardinal Mayer in the early 90′s, and that it hinges on local custom. I was also told that the former prevails if the local custom is not to say the Confiteor, not the other way around. This was confirmed in conversation with a couple of well-known members, one in a very high position of authority (whose name I’ll share with you privately if you’d like.) One of these latter men said to me regarding Cardinal Mayer’s permission, “case closed.”

  6. MC says:

    Hi, I’m MC at the local ICR Mass , first of all I can tell u I visited the Seminary
    last year and all the Masses I went to which had Communion used the second Confiteor.
    Every Mass I went to with a ICR priest uses the Second Confiteor. Is you say forgot
    about the Second Confiteor ( which happened me a few times , trying to get altar
    boys to kneel for Communion), the priest would start you off.I really have grown
    to like the Second Confiteor, I always just pray to God at that moment, for
    the one Communicant who might have made a sacreligious Communion only for it..

    But, I don’t think people should start saying stuff to ICR priests about this,
    from what I can see it is the will of there superiors for them to say Mass like
    this. Also I really don’t think they take much notice of weather the Missal
    is 1962. . . they just use whatever Missal they have. Thank God for ICR and
    FSSP and all the traditional orders providing Mass for the faithful around the
    world.

  7. “I was also told that the former prevails if the local custom is not to say the Confiteor, not the other way around.”

    For those of us who do not get invited to dinner parties with prelates, we have to muddle through somehow with what someone tells us officially, either in a statement of record, or a specific rubric. It is one thing to tolerate something as a matter of custom, quite another to impose it as a requirement, at which point it is no longer merely a “custom.” Personally, I could make a case one way or the other for the merits of a “second Confiteor.” And I can find just as many FSSP priests who will say the opposite of what others have said. None of that is a substitute for that which is on the record.

  8. Maureen says:

    I find it interesting that people are in a rush to obey certain suggestions and permissions, but are rather slow to obey certain outright obligations and prohibitions. But apparently, the slowness and hesitation that people approve in themselves, they find annoying in the curia.

    Human nature. Gotta love it. :)

  9. Jon says:

    David,

    “For those of us who do not get invited to dinner parties with prelates.”

    LOL! If you’d like a dinner invite like those “prelates” to my humble hovel, I’m open any time. DC’s no farther from Lancaster (where I live) than Scranton. By next month we can sit on the deck and watch my Amish neighbor plow his field. Glamor – that’s our middle name!

  10. “Comment by Maureen — 14 February 2008 @ 8:03 am”

    Good one.

  11. “If you’d like a dinner invite like those ‘prelates’ to my humble hovel, I’m open any time…”

    You’re on. The Amish country is lovely in the spring. That’s “manwithblackhat at yahoo dot com.”

  12. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    Perhaps part of the problem is:

    1) The great accomplishment of liturgical science c. 1960 was the art of cutting things from the liturgy. Such cutting resulted in the truly bizarre phenomenon where clerics reading the 1962 Breviary sometimes get a gospel homily at Matins that poses a question with no answer, because the Bugnini “reform” cut the 2nd and 3rd parts of the lesson;

    2) The Bugnini “reforms” displayed a great fondness for using the adjective “instauratus” to describe their changes, thereby implying that old practices were being restored to the liturgy after having been discarded.

  13. roydosan says:

    Was the second confiteor ever part of the Mass? My Missal from 1952 doesn’t
    feature it at all.

  14. Breier says:

    Mauren,

    I think you’re rather begging the question. There is no current
    outright prohibition coming from Rome about the Second Confiteor issue.
    Fr. Z’s anonymous second-hand report is not official. If an order came
    out from the Secretariat of State about this, as with the Good Friday
    prayer, it would be a different issue.

    There is the old rubric, but there is also the argument that it has
    been subsequently superceded by past permission. The argument about
    custom is an indication of said past permission, and of the binding
    force.

    Consider the old Decrees of the Pontificial Biblical Commission.

    Citing them will get one nowhere, because they no longer bind, even though
    there has been no formal revocation of them. Custom, practice, and
    observation has taught us this.

  15. Scott Smith says:

    roydosan:

    You’d find it in the Ritus Servandus of the Altar Missal under Chapter X.6 I believe.

  16. Breier says:

    A question:

    The Motu Proprio says the 1962 Missal was not abrogated. Does that same
    argument prove that the 1955 Missal was not abrogated?

    My understanding is that we have the 1962 Missal because Archbishop
    Lefebvre chose it for his Society. Before that point, presumably,
    people had been celebrating post 1962 Missals, because they thought there
    was an obligation to do so, and the thought the 1962 Missal was replaced.

    But the Motu Proprio says that this was not the case. In fact, priests
    always had a right to the 1962 Missal.

    So if that’s the case, does that mean priests always had a rite to the
    1955 Missal, and every other missal back to antiquity?

    If the SSPX had chosen the 1955 Missal, would the Pope have said,
    the 1955 Missal has never been abrogated? What makes 1962 special?

    How does one confine the argument to the 1962 Missal? Did the promulgation
    practice for missals somehow change after that date? Were early missals
    formally abrogated before 1962 but not afterwards?

    It seems to me the same argument that makes the 1962 Missal available
    objectively makes other past missals available. The Pope may not have
    intended this, but does it follow from his conclusions?

  17. PLUTX says:

    I too was in the FSSP seminary for a while (with Sigil7). I don’t recall them ever doing the confiteor before communion, but there were several of the more “hard-core” seminarians who were very much for it, including the MC at the time….He also pulled off the pre-1962 Good Friday “by accident.” The official line we were given was that it would be continued in parishes where it was the custom before the FSSP got there, but would not be part of the Mass in places where the Mass was starting anew.
    The thing is that the FSSP (and I guess the other orders too) will have a mixed bag of Priests. Some will be of the Do the red, say the black school, others will make allowance for customs from their favorite edition of the Missal. Either way, the Rubrics are rather clear (Thank you Fr Z!)

  18. AnAnonymousSeminarian says:

    Breier,

    Although there may be something to this idea that the Second Confiteor is permitted because of custom, it must be admitted that it simply does not exist in the Missal of 1962. For most parishes that will be starting out with EF Masses after not having them for 40 years, the issue of custom should be a largely moot point and it seems that the Second Confiteor should not be used.

    For priests who are just learning the EF Mass now or for seminarians such as myself who may be learning and using it in the future, it seems that it would be completely out of step with SP to be using anything but the Missal of 1962. This would be especially true in dioceses such as my own that never had an indult granted.

  19. Gavin says:

    I was thinking that the impious bickering over this and the prayer for the Jews will be the death of the EF. But now that I consider it, it won’t be. It’s the death for the rad-trad kind of traditionalism that emphasizes a phony nostalgia of “before the (insert your least favorite year) missal”. The fact is now that the holier-than-the-pope-Jesus-and-Mary trads will die out with the boomers and younger generations will come to the EF for the beauty of the EF itself and not for a second confiteor or an unnecessarily polemic prayer for the Jews. Like the boomers, the sooner the rad-trads are out of control, the better off the Church will be.

  20. Chad says:

    I post the following from the Motu Proprio Rubricarum Instructum which mandated the rubrics of the 1962 Missal:

    1. We command that, beginning on the first day of January of next year, 1961, all those who follow the Roman rite shall observe the new code of rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal arranged under three headings – “Genreal Rubrics,” “General Rubrics of the Roman Breviary,” and “General Rubrics of the Roman Missal” – to be published shortly by our Sacred Congregation of Rites. As for those who observe some other Latin rite, they are bound to conform as soon as possible both to the new code of rubrics and to the calendar, in all those things which are not strictly proper to their own rite.
    2. On the same day, Janurary 1, 1961, the “General Rubrics” of the Roman breviary and missal, as well as the “Additions and Variations” to the rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal according to the bull Divino afflatu of our predecessor St. Pius X, which have hitherto been prefixed to these books, shall become inoperative. As the provisions of the decree, The Reduction of the Rubrics to a Simpler Form , dated March 23, 1955, have been incorporated into this new edition of the rubrics, this general decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites shall likewise become inoperative. Finally, any decrees and replies on doubtful points issued by the same Congregation which do not agree with this new form of rubrics shall be abrograted.
    3. Likewise, statues, priveleges, indults, and customs of any kind whatsoever, including those that are centenary and immemorial, even if they are worthy of special and individual mention, shall be revoked if they are opposed to these rubrics.

    From reading this I am lead to believe that since the rubric of the 1962 Missal says the 2nd Confiteor is to be omitted then any formor rubric in regards to the 2nd Confiteor is abrogated. Any rubric that is opposed to the rubrics of the 1962 Missal was made null and void by Rubricarum Instructum.

  21. Flambeaux says:

    Chad,

    That also puts paid to the “immemorial custom” argument.

    Thanks.

  22. Breier says:

    Anonymous Seminarian,

    I agree that the 1962 Missal should be used. But, intellectually, is that
    only because we still have the indult?

    If the reason for using the 1962 is because the Pope gave permission to it,
    and the right to celebrate comes from his permission, limited to the 1962
    Missal, fine.

    If the reason is that the 1962 missal was non-abrogated, how is the 1962
    Missal not-abrogated any more than the 1955 Missal, or the 1965 Missal?

    The Pope, in his accompanying letter, said:

    “As for the use of the 1962 Missal as a Forma extraordinaria of the liturgy of the Mass, I would like to draw attention to the fact that this Missal was never juridically abrogated and, consequently, in principle, was always permitted. At the time of the introduction of the new Missal, it did not seem necessary to issue specific norms for the possible use of the earlier Missal. Probably it was thought that it would be a matter of a few individual cases which would be resolved, case by case, on the local level.”

    Was the 1955 juridicially abrogated? Was the 1965 Missal?

    Notice how the Pope admits using the older missal at the local level,
    to be resolved on a case by case basis.

    How does that not apply to something like the Second Confiteor?

  23. Mary says:

    Our FSSP priest always uses the second Confiteor. As far as I know there wasn’t another TLM community here towards “local custom”, though I don’t know much about it.

  24. danphunter1 says:

    Brier,
    Yes, indeed.
    Very charitable of you to calmly point this out.
    Chad:
    You would do well to learn from men of charity and great equanimity, in not throwing temper tantrums and casting childish insults about.
    This is not in keeping with the Holy Fathers mind.
    May the God of all Mercy let His countenance to shine upon you now and at all times.
    God bless you and yours.

  25. Breier says:

    Chad,

    Thanks for the cite. The question is, then, is the addition of anything
    to the liturgy based on local custom in opposition to the rubrics?

    Also, is there any force of custom on this point arising from after 1961?

    And what is the locale to which custom extends? A particular parish, a region,
    a country?

    My post-1962 Celebration of the Mass by O’Connell mentions standard
    deviations from the rubrics even then, such as the sanctus candle, the omission
    of a pillow for the missal, etc. I wish I had the book on hand, as I there
    was very useful discussion about the principles undergirding these issues
    there.

  26. Chad says:

    Comment by danphunter1 — 14 February 2008 @ 10:09 am
    Chad:
    You would do well to learn from men of charity and great equanimity, in not throwing temper tantrums and casting childish insults about.
    This is not in keeping with the Holy Fathers mind.

    Where exactly did i throw a temper tantrum. Or cast childish insults about? I only posted from the Motu Proprio and gave my insight on it. This is why I rarely post on blogs. God bless and keep you. I’ll restrain myself commenting in the future.

  27. Ken says:

    For those who didn’t plow through the other thread, allow me to point out that the same 1962 missal that did not include the final Confiteor also did not include the Prayers After Low Mass. I’ve never been to a Low Mass where those prayers were not said.

  28. Jerry O says:

    An FSSP priest friend says he follows the local custom. If the altar boys say the Confiteor he will abide; if not, he goes right to the Ecce.

    Jerry

  29. Breier says:

    Chad,

    I appreciated your citation! Where did you find it, as it’s hard
    to get those things in English. I think Danhunter put your name in
    by mistake. The post preceding yours was the more fiesty one.

    Though the point of this debate may be venial, I think the principles
    involved are very important, and get at the heart of our present liturgical
    situation. It would be a mistake to see this as a squabble over an iota.
    This is more an application of first principles.

  30. MG says:

    Father,
    All this talk about the so called second Confiteor stirred up some old memories.
    I was in the FSSP seminary in 1996/97 back when they were still in Pennsylvania. I served many masses, both low and solemn, and I don’t remember the Confiteor before communion being part of the rubrics. I was using my mother’s old St Joseph’s Missal at the time and I used to skip over that part while assisting at Mass.

    The first time I ever saw it used was in a YouTube video of a Solemn Mass from the 1940′s. I know I would have remembered if that was part of the daily Masses I assisted at for almost a year.

    However, I did see the Mass celebrated on EWTN for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross by the FSSP, including the former superior general Fr. Bisig. The deacon and subdeacon did the second Confiteor before communion. I thought that was odd because I had never seen it done at a fraternity mass, but I didn’t give it any other thought after that.

  31. Maynardus says:

    If Father is not sick of this by now – and sorry he ever made that teeny little original post – perhaps he will confirm my logic (or shoot it down if it is incorrect):

    What is the 1962 editio typica of the Missale Romanum? Simply put, it is the previous edition with any subsequent changes incorporated. It was not created de novo and hence there was no question of – or necessity to – “abrogate” any previous edition.

    For those who like to use exact terminology I believe it would be correct to state that the 1962 *obrogated* the previous one. Mr. Perkins will no doubt be happy to see someone draw the distinction ;-)

    Also, like Mr. Perkins I also recall the article Mr. Davies wrote some years ago about “the burning question of the second Confiteor”. (For those whove lost their sense of humor that was called “sarcasm”!) Although I am likewise unable to lay my hands upon it at this moment I have frequently cited it and am certain that my reollection is accurate: Mr. Davies concluded that the 2nd Confiteor was certainly omitted from the 1962 Missal but that its use was tolerated or even licit where it was customary. I will also try and locate the actual text tonight.

  32. Caeremoniarius says:

    When I was a seminarian in Wigratzbad in 1989, we had the Confiteor before
    Communion as a matter of course.

    Card. Mayer was not (at least in those days, if ever) a friend of this Confiteor.
    A seminarian who was in Wigratzbad before my arrival told the story of a Pontifical
    Mass celebrated by the Cardinal at the seminary; the rector was Deacon of the Mass
    and sang the Confiteor, whereupon the Cardinal ignored him and went straight to
    the Ecce Agnus Dei (as the rubric requires).

    While we’re at it, who says that this Confiteor is permitted at Pontifical Mass?
    Don’t forget–rubrics of the Caeremoniale that contradict the 1962 rubrics are
    superseded by them (that’s what “anything whatsoever to the contrary
    notwithstanding” means). I think everyone is thinking of the Confiteor sung by
    the Deacon after the sermon, after which the Bishop would give an indulgence of
    X number of days (in 1962, that was 100 days by a Bishop, 200 by an Archbishop,
    300 by a Cardinal).

  33. danphunter1 says:

    Chad,
    I apologise sincerly.
    I made a mistake.
    I shall keep my pie hole shut now.
    Please forgive me.

  34. Caeremoniarius says:

    When I was a seminarian in Wigratzbad in 1989, we had the Confiteor before
    Communion as a matter of course.

    Card. Mayer was not (at least in those days, if ever) a friend of this Confiteor.
    A seminarian who was in Wigratzbad before my arrival told the story of a Pontifical
    Mass celebrated by the Cardinal at the seminary; the rector was Deacon of the Mass
    and sang the Confiteor, whereupon the Cardinal ignored him and went straight to
    the Ecce Agnus Dei (as the rubric requires).

    While we\’re at it, who says that this Confiteor is permitted at Pontifical Mass?
    Don\’t forget–rubrics of the Caeremoniale that contradict the 1962 rubrics are
    superseded by them (that\’s what \”anything whatsoever to the contrary
    notwithstanding\” means). I think everyone is thinking of the Confiteor sung by
    the Deacon after the sermon, after which the Bishop would give an indulgence of
    X number of days (in 1962, that was 100 days by a Bishop, 200 by an Archbishop,
    300 by a Cardinal).

  35. On “abrogated” and use of the 1962 Missasl from 1970 to 2006. A canonist like Tim F. can correct me, but people seem to be drawing in invalid conclusion form the SP statement that the 1962 Missal was never abrogated. To abrogate is to make null and void. This obviously never happened because after 1970 use of the 1962 Missal was (in a very restricted or less restricted way) given to inviduals and groups.

    If the Missal was “abrogated” (void) permission could not be given to use it. Just as today people are would not be given an “indult” to use the Code of 1917, which was abrogated by the new code of 1983.

    But that the 1962 Missal was not abrogated does not mean that “any priest could have used it.” Use of liturgical rites are according to the faculties given the priest, which is even true for use of the 1970 Missal, hearing confessions, preaching etc. The use of the 1962 Missal was according to the faculties granted by Rome, bishops, or major superiors in accord with the law then in force. As is the case today, that the Missal was not abrogated does not mean a priest automatically got to use it–as I said is also true of the 1970 Missal.

    Am I correct, Tim? I have the benefit of only two seminary canon law courses and they are 20 years ago.

  36. Chad says:

    Breier: The English translation of Rubricarum Instructum can be found here -
    http://sanctaliturgia.blogspot.com/2005/11/rubricarum-instructum-english.html

  37. “[A]llow me to point out that the same 1962 missal that did not include the final Confiteor also did not include the Prayers After Low Mass.”

    The operative word here, I believe, is “after.” They would have been considered optional, and were in fact included in hand missals published based upon the 1962 Missal. (I’m not talking about current reprints. There were not many back then. The only one I know of at that time, was Helicon Press in Baltimore.) At our parish, where the ’62 Missal is used, we always say the Leonine Prayers after Low Mass.

  38. Pope Evaristus, Martyr says:

    Most FSSP priests employ the Confiteor before Communion.

  39. Prof. Basto says:

    The question is beyond doubt.

    1. – We have a rubric in the General Rubrics of the 1962 Missal (n. 503), explicitly mandating the omission of the second Confiteor.

    2. – And that rubric was put in place by the authority of a Motu Proprio of Pope John XXIII (Rubricarum Instructum), whereby even customs of time immemorial, even if worthy of individual mention, were all reppealed if they were contrary to the new code of rubrics.

    There is simply no standing left for a second confiteor, except when the Pontificale is to be used.

  40. AJdiocese says:

    MG brings up an interesting point that I noticed as well. Why is the second confetior always being used by the FSSP when they have a televised Mass on EWTN? It’s also used in their Mass dvd’s.

  41. Breier says:

    I found an article in the American Ecclesiastical Review on this subject,
    published in 1962. I don’t have access to the volume, but perhaps a
    seminarian reading this might? Here’s the cite:

    American Ecclesiastical Review V. 147, July-Dec 1962 p.62

  42. Caeremoniarius says:

    I see too that in the 1962 Pontificale the Confiteor and absolution appear
    at the Ordination Mass. The question arises: does this mean that the
    Confiteor is allowed hoc in casu tanto, or is it a question of careless
    editing of the 1962 Pontificale? (It can happen.)

  43. Chad says:

    Perhaps the FSSP and the Institute of Christ the King has special permission to use the 2nd Confiteor. Without written proof we can’t prove one way or the other. But without a doubt it should not be included in Masses offered by a parish level by a Diocesan Priest.

  44. Prof. Basto says:

    Below is the English translation of the Motu Proprio “Rubricarum instructum”, that changed the general rubrics in 1960. The rubrics were made public on the follwing day by the decree “Novo Rubricarum Breviarii ac Missalis” of the SC for Rites.

    The general rubrics were not changed again when a new edition Roman Missal was promulgated in 1962.

    As the decree “Novo Rubricarum Corpore” promulgating the 1962 edition explains, the publication of that edition completes the process started with the 1960 change in the general rubrics. The goal of the 1962 edition was to have an edition accomodated to the rubrics of 1960.

    As noted above, n. 503 of the General Rubrics expressly directs that a second confiteor be omitted (“… omissis confessione et absolutione…”) before Communion during Mass.

    As for the reppeal of customs of any kind whatever, take a look at the explicit terms of John XXIII clauses of abrogation contained in the Motu Proprio:

    Rubricarum Instructum

    “It has been the constant aim of the Apostolic see, especially since the Council of Trent, to define more accurately and arrange more suitably the body of rubrics by which the Church’s public worship is ordered and governered. Thus many things have been emended, changed and added in the course of time. The consequent growth of the system of rubrics has sometimes been unsystematic and detrimental to the original clarity and simplicity of the whole system.

    Hence, it is not surprising that our Predecessor Pope Pius XII, of happy memory, acceding to the wishes of many of the bishops, should have judged it expedient to reduce the rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal to a simpler form in certain respects. This simplification was enacted by a decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites dated March 23, 1955.

    Then, in the following year, 1956, when preparatory studies were being conducted for a general liturgical reform, our predecessor decided to survey the opinions of the bishops on the liturgical improvement of the Roman breviary. After duly weighing the answers of the bishops he judged that it was time to attack the problem of a general and systematic revision of the rubrics of the breviary and missal. This question he referred to the special committe of experts who have been appointed to study the general liturgical reform.
    Then the problem became ours. After we had decided, under the inspiration of God, to convene an ecumenical council, we turned over in our mind what was to be done about this project begun by our predecessor. After mature reflection, we came to the conclusion that the more important principles governing a general liturgical reform should be laid before the memebers of the hierarchy at the forthcoming ecumenical council, but that the above-mentioned improvement of the rubrics of the breviary and missal should no longer be put off.

    We ourselves, therefore, of our own accord [motu proprio] and with full knowledge, have seen fit to approve by our apostolic authority the body of these rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal prepared by the experts of the Sacred Congregation of Rites and carefully revised by the aforesaid pontifical commission for general liturgical reform. And we decree as follows:

    1. We command that, beginning on the first day of January of next year, 1961, all those who follow the Roman rite shall observe the new code of rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal arranged under three headings – “Genreal Rubrics,” “General Rubrics of the Roman Breviary,” and “General Rubrics of the Roman Missal” – to be published shortly by our Sacred Congregation of Rites. As for those who observe some other Latin rite, they are bound to conform as soon as possible both to the new code of rubrics and to the calendar, in all those things which are not strictly proper to their own rite.

    2. On the same day, Janurary 1, 1961, the “General Rubrics” of the Roman breviary and missal, as well as the “Additions and Variations” to the rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal according to the bull Divino afflatu of our predecessor St. Pius X, which have hitherto been prefixed to these books, shall become inoperative. As the provisions of the decree, The Reduction of the Rubrics to a Simpler Form , dated March 23, 1955, have been incorporated into this new edition of the rubrics, this general decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites shall likewise become inoperative. Finally, any decrees and replies on doubtful points issued by the same Congregation which do not agree with this new form of rubrics shall be abrograted.

    3. Likewise, statues, priveleges, indults, and customs of any kind whatsoever, including those that are centenary and immemorial, even if they are worthy of special and individual mention, shall be revoked if they are opposed to these rubrics.

    4. The publishers of liturgical books who are duly approved by the Holy See may prepare new editions of the Roman breviary and missal arranged according to the new code of rubrics. In order to insure the necessary uniformity of the new editions, however, the Sacred Congregation of Rites shall issue special instructions.

    5. In the new editions of the Roman breviary or missal, the texts of the rubrics mentioned in no. 2 above shall be omitted, and the texts of the new rubrics put in their place. That is, the “General Rubrics” and the “General Rubrics fo the Roman Breviary” shall be prefixed to the breviary; and similarly, the “General Rubrics” and the “General Rubrics of the Roman Missal” shall be prefixed to the missal.

    6. Finally, all those whose responsibility it is, shall see to it as soon as possible that the special calendars and propers, whether diocesan or religious, conform to the principles and ideals of the new edition of the rubrics and of the calendar. These calendars and propers are subject to the approval of the Sacred Congregation of Rites.

    Having firmly established these points, we consider it fitting to our apostolic office to add some advice.

    The fact is that this new arrangement of the rubrics has two effects. On the one hand, the whole structure of the rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal is reduced to a better form, distributed in a clearer order and brought together in a single text. On the other hand, some special modifications have also been introduced, by which the divine office is somewhat shortened. This shortening was petitioned by very many bishops, in view especially of the constantly increasing burden of pastoral cares laid upon many priests. In a fatherly spirit we urge these and all who are bound to the recitation of the divine office to make up for any shortening of that office by greater attentiveness and devotion. Moreover, since the reading of the fathers of the Church is sometimes cut down to a certain extent, we earnestly exhort all clergy to be sure to have at hand for reading and meditation the works of the fathers, which are so full of wisdom and piety.

    Now let those things which we have decreed and established by this letter, given of our own accord, be considered as ratified and confirmed, anything to the contrary notwithstanding, including that which is worthy of special and individual mention.

    Given at Rome, at St. Peter’s, on the twenty-fifth day of July, in the year 1960, the second of our pontificate.”

    IOANNES PP. XXIII

  45. Perhaps the most prudent way to resolve this issue is for the second confiteor to be made optional according to the practice of local custom. A too rigorist approach to this question will only be bitterly divisive and will do no good.

  46. Scott Smith says:

    From above:

    3. Likewise, statues, privileges, indults, and customs of any kind whatsoever, including those that are centenary and immemorial, even if they are worthy of special and individual mention, shall be revoked if they are opposed to these rubrics.

    or if you prefer the Latin:

    3. Item statuta, privilegia, indulta et consuetudines cujuscumque generis, etiam sæcularia et immemorabilia, immo specialissima atque individua mentione digna, quæ his rubricis obstant, revocantur.

    CIC 1983: Can. 28 Without prejudice to the prescript of Can. 5, a contrary custom or law revokes a custom which is contrary to or beyond the law (praeter legem). Unless it makes express mention of them, however, a law does not revoke centenary or immemorial customs, nor does a universal law revoke particular customs.

    or if you prefer the Latin of the 1917 code:

    Can 30. Firmo praescripto can. 5, consuetudo contra legem vel praeter legem per contrariam consuetudinem aut legem revocatur; sed, nisi expressam de iisdem mentionem fecerit, lex non revocat consuetudines centenarias aut immemorabiles, nec lex generalis consuetudines particulares.

    Is this definitive then that there is no room at all in the celebration of the Traditional Mass for the use of the Confiteor before Communion, or the bows to the Crucifix, or the use of a proper last Gospel?

    From the New Commentary of the New Code of Canon Law (green edition) (p. 89)

    “Reprobated customs should not be confused with those that have been abrogated or prohibited in law: the latter may revive and some day become legal; reprobated customs cannot. The juridical text must state explicitly that it is reprobating a custom as with the words reprobata contraria consuetudine.”

    “A custom contrary to the law (ius) may be reasonable or unreasonable. The ius to which a contrary custom relates could be a law, a general administrative norm, a statute, an ordinance, or legal custom.”

    “Unreasonable customs are those that are against faith and morals, occasion [of] sin, are opposed to the constitution or liberty of the Church, harm the common good, or disrupt the “nerve of ecclesiastical discipline”.

    “By allowing a factual custom to continue, a favorable judgment about the custom’s reasonableness is implied; by seeking to eradicate the custom the superior judges it to be unreasonable. This judgment cannot be based solely on the fact that it is against a written norm; otherwise there would be no role for contrary customs in the canonical system. Rather it must be based on a consideration of various criteria depending on the nature of the practice and the circumstances of the case, such as the custom’s theological/liturgical propriety, usefulness, meaningfulness to the community, the gravitas (cf. c. 90.1) or importance of the norm to which the custom is contrary, whether it is peacefully observed, whether most of the community wants to keep observing the practice even after learning it is contra ius, etc.”

    Q. Is revoking a contrary custom identical to reprobating a contrary custom?

    Q. Are the customs contrary to the 1962 rubrics reasonable or unreasonable?

    Q. Are the lawful superiors aware of these customs that are being used in certain places by certain juridical communities and are they allowing these factual customs to continue?

    Q. Are these customs peacefully observed?

    Q. Does it matter?

  47. “Perhaps the most prudent way to resolve this issue…”

    …is for people to cut to the bottom line, and work from there. After three posts on this subject, and documentation that leaves nothing to the imagination, people are still sniffing around for a loophole — as in, oh, I hear Father Jones says he can do this, and Father Smith says he has a note from a retired cardinal in Rome saying that, and on and on and on…

    There is a lesson here somewhere.

  48. Flambeaux says:

    David,

    You wrote, \”There is a lesson here somewhere.\”

    I owe you a beer the next time I\’m in your neck of the woods for that insightful summation. :)

  49. Peter Karl T. Perkins says:

    I am not contributing much to this issue. The Indult Mass in Victoria, B.C., Canada, always had the second Confiteor. In 2001, Michael Davies commented on this issue in “The Latin Mass Magazine”. Here is what he wrote:

    “The liturgical destruction did not begin in 1969 with the promulgation of the new rite of Mass, the Novus Ordo Missae. The debacle was well under way in 1965 when the Vatican allowed its liturgical bureaucrats to begin revising the Missal that had last been revised in 1962. The 1962 Missal incorporated the mainly rubrical changes contained in the General Decree Novum Rubricarum of the Sacred Congregation of Rites of July 26, 1960. This rubrical reform had been ordered by Pope Pius XII, and few of the changes would have been noticed by the layman using a pre-1962 Missal apart from the omission of the second Confiteor before the Communion of the Faithful. In pre-1962 Missals in the Ritus servandus in celebratione Missae, X, 6, this Confiteor is stipulated. In the same section in the 1962 Missal it is not mentioned, but nowhere in the rubrics is it forbidden. Apart from this omission the ordinary of the Mass was not changed.”

    As I recall, on several occasions, Davies argued that the second confiteor was permitted but not required today as a result of this.

    P.K.T.P.

  50. Prof. Basto says:

    Mr. Smith,

    Ok. Let us enter in that debate then.

    The commentary mentions gravitas or importance of the norm to which the custom is contrary; it mentions the question of the nerve of ecclesiastical discipline, and it seems to me that the Apostolic Letter of Pope John XXIII is pretty powerful, to the point of explicitly reppealing immemorial custom, even if worthy of singular mention. How often do we see that clause?

    I mean, the intent of the supreme canonical legislator is pretty strong and clear here regarding the total observance of the new rubrics, without any excuse, pretext, or norm to the contrary standing, isn’t it?

    Also, regarding the re-introduction of contrary custom: The commentary mentions the reaction of the community after learning that the custom is contra ius as a factor. Well, most people are really unaware that those things are contra ius, aren’t they? I mean, even clergymen such as Fr. Z., an expert in Liturgy, ex-PCED staff member, go to the Vatican to seek clarification on this, because there are always those little lies, those un-corroborated and unproven assertions made knowingly or unknowingly, such as: the PCED has granted institute X the special faculty to use the Holy Week rubrics of 1955; the PCED has granted permission for a second confiteor; the rubrics are silent regarding a second confiteor; there is no clause reppealing centenary custom to the contrary, etc. So, there are always those ellaborate allegations that are false, and, when we go dig and check, the truth appears to the contrary. Up to today, we weren’t remembering general rubric 503, and we weren’t remembering Rubricarum instructum item 3, despite the texts being under our noses. And there are liturgy experts here. That’s the power of those false assertions. So, I bet many people support the contra legem recitation of the second confiteor because they don’t know that it is contra legem. They think its at least praeter legem, if not authorized.

    And that erodes the observance of a most solemn and forceful fiat issued by bl. John XXIII with explicit clauses of abrogation, thus compromising the nerve of ecclesiastical discipline, and that principle, already contained in Mediator Dei and so much ignored, that Liturgy is not to be tampered with according to one’s private preferences.

  51. Angelo says:

    P.K.T.P.

    Spring 2001 Issue
    THE LATIN MASS MAGAZINE

    Missal of 1962 – A Rock of Stability
    by Michael Davies

    “The 1962 Missal incorporated the mainly rubrical changes contained in the General Decree Novum Rubricarum of the Sacred Congregation of Rites of July 26, 1960. This rubrical reform had been ordered by Pope Pius XII, and few of the changes would have been noticed by the layman using a pre-1962 Missal apart from the omission of the second Confiteor before the Communion of the Faithful. In pre-1962 Missals in the Ritus servandus in celebratione Missae, X, 6, this Confiteor is stipulated. In the same section in the 1962 Missal it is not mentioned, but nowhere in the rubrics is it forbidden.” Apart from

  52. Breier says:

    There’s a lot of begging of the question going on.

    It’s not as if we’re living in 1962 presently. In the intervening 46 years
    since the Missal’s promulgation, there were clarifications of the rubrics,
    dispensations from PCED, the opportunity for customs vary from the rubrics to
    form, etc.

    You might as well be quoting the Pontifical Biblical Commission and Pius X’s
    Motu Proprio regarding its obligation. But that argument would omit the
    practical possibility, and reality, of custom rending such decrees a nullity.

    The only thing that will settle this issue is a clear statement from PCED
    or the CDW as to what the proper practice is. In the absence of some contrary
    authority, the rubric clearly stands, but it’s that authority which is
    precisely in question; and there has not been a resolution as yet.

  53. Aaron Sanders says:

    Thanks to Scott Smith for bringing out the difference between revocation and reprobation of a custom. It was something I wished to turn to, as I think the question of custom is the real issue of important in a discussion of the second Confiteor.

    It seems clear, after all, that the ’60/’62 rubrics exclude the second Confiteor, and also that the “clock reset” with their coming into effect, yet it is also clear that that custom stood a chance of reviving in the future. I think we should also conclude that, per 1983 CIC can. 5, the clock reset again in 1983. So really what needs to be analyzed is “in localities where the second Confiteor is employed, is this done by legitimate custom?” after which we need to ask “is it wise to be introducing custom contra legem in the current liturgical environment?”

    As to the first, if the second Confiteor is being employed upon the initiative of the community, then the possibility remains that the custom will be revoked (if it fails to meet with the approval of the ordinary or reach the minimum age of 30 years), but until that time it can be tolerated and we can wait for the slow process of custom to sort itself out.

    But should we be embarking on the process to begin with? Having grown up in the midst (albeit not bearing the brunt) of a liturgical maelstrom, the whole idea of custom contra legem makes me leery to begin with; still, I recognize that it is deeply rooted in canonical jurisprudence and has probably even borne liturgical fruit which I now enjoy. Granting the principle of the practice, though, is now the time to be *promoting* customary development of the liturgy? Aside from general concern for the stability of the rite and a desire that priests new to the ’62 missal “learn it right” before proceeding onward to the more delicate task of negotiating custom, I think there is a larger danger posed by introducing the second Confiteor on the grounds of custom:

    The ’62 missal has a spirituality of its own; it is a different beast than the 2002 missal. In freeing the use of the ’62 missal, it is precisely to this traditional spirituality that Pope Benedict wanted to widen our exposure. If communities begin justifying a second Confiteor on the grounds of custom contra legem, what is to prevent other communities from introducing their own customs – on the same grounds – that might alter this spirituality? The argument is not that “a bunch of liberals will grab hold of this and start being just as creative as with the NO” – though some, indeed, might – or that “we have to protect the rite from any development.” It WILL develop, the pope wants it to, but he wants us to mine the ’62 missal’s spirituality for the riches it can bring to development. If we START by deviating from the missal, and thus green light others to do the same, we risk missing the foundation Benedict has proposed for the overall development of both forms of the rite.

    Now, I could swear I had a second danger in mind, but after writing the above I could no longer remember it. Maybe that means it got integrated, maybe I’m losing my edge. But I hope what I have managed to get out elicits some constructive engagement, as I think it is the most significant aspect of the Confiteor debate.

  54. AJdiocese says:

    Even if arguing from custom, had VII never happened and the 1962 missal been taught in the seminaries, the second confiteor would’ve disappeared over time since the younger priests wouldn’t have been taught it.

  55. Lindsay says:

    I’m going to venture a question hoping I can understand the answer:

    Exactly when does mass end? People seem to be bringing up the prayers at the end of mass as comparable to this issue of the 2nd Confiteor, but to my very limited knowledge, they happen after mass is finished, right? So, what is to prevent a community of believers from praying together after mass? It seems a different issue from something occurring in the middle.

  56. Michael Garner says:

    Breier,

    You stated:

    * My post-1962 Celebration of the Mass by O’Connell mentions standard
    deviations from the rubrics even then, such as the sanctus candle, the omission
    of a pillow for the missal, etc. I wish I had the book on hand, as I there
    was very useful discussion about the principles undergirding these issues
    there.

    But…
    1. The Sanctus or “elevation” candle is not a deviation from the rubrics. The rubric states:

    * 530. Where the custom prevails of lighting a candle, near the altar, from the consecration to the communion, that custom should be preserved.

    2. The use of a stand instead of a pillow is allowed in the rubrics of the 1962 Missale Romanum as it was also allowed in previous editions through a decree from the Sacred Congregation of Rites though not found in the rubrics then.

    * 527. …and, at the epistle side, a cushion or a lectern for supporting the Missal.

    One would be hard pressed to find a deviation from the rubrics or official decrees of the SRC in O’Connell’s The Celebration of Mass.

  57. Joshua says:

    As I have pointed out before, the Society of St. John confirmed to me (Fr. Scott to be precise) that there was 1. Permission for the Sacred Congregation of Rites, 2. Confirmation from the PCED for the use of the 2nd Confiteor where customary (and they did confirm that it had been used in Chicago through the early sixties)

    Now assuming that the PCED confirmation was verbal, or private or in any case unable to be confirmed, then the claim that the SRC allowed it should be easier to confirm. By this time their decrees were in the AAS. I will look it up and see if I find anything.

    People should keep in mind that there are numerous instances of things ordered in the rubrics, that were legitimately not followed. Before 1962 the Elevation Candle was mandated, but almost nowhere was it used. If one digs into it, you will find a rescript from the SRC that permitted a local Ordinary to waive that rubric where local custom had largely dropped it. There are also examples from the modern GIRM, where Rome said that keeping the former custom of kneeling during the Agnus (when the GIRM at the time said to stand) was laudable.

  58. Jonas says:

    But what about Missa cantata? In this case the first Confiteor is said only by ministers, while the congregation is following the singing of Schola. In this case, the second Confiteor looks to be highly relevant and necessary.

  59. Joshua says:

    How about the use of a Cross bearer at Solemn and even just Sung Masses? A crucifer belongs only to a Pontifical Mass, where a subdeacon carries it (apart from a few days of the year, where again a subdeacon carries it). Are we to squash that practice, or recognise with O’Connell that it is probably legitimate (even he won’t say certainly so)?

  60. Pope Evaristus, Martyr says:

    Michael Davies opinion carries the weight of his authority. His authority is that of a second-rate High School teacher. If you read the above posts, you see that it was clearly DISCONTINUED. “omissis confessione et absolutione”

    (Is Scott Smith the same as Scott Emmitt Smith?)

  61. Breier says:

    Evaristus,

    That kind of venomous comment is unwarranted. Let’s try to stick
    to the issues please. The rubrics in the Mass text, say nothing
    about the Second Confiteor. The General Rubrics do mention the
    ommission. It seems to me that people may have been looking at
    the text of the Missal, not knowing there is a certain redundancy
    of its rubrics with the General Rubrics.

  62. Michael Garner says:

    Joshua,

    Yes, with the exception of some processions, etc. that call for them, the use of a incense and a crucifix at the beginning of the procession of Mass is a distinction of a Pontifical Mass and should be kept that way.

  63. Caeremoniarius says:

    Dear Lindsay,

    The prayers after Mass are indeed just that–after Mass. Theoretically,
    there is nothing to prevent people from saying them privately. But why
    should the priest lead the congregation in doing them before leaving the
    altar? They have been suppressed, along with the indulgences connected
    with them; for whatever reason, the Holy See determined that the public
    recitation of these prayers, priest and people together, was to cease.
    In practice, too, people have been known to get *very* huffy if the
    priest won’t say these prayers after Low Mass. It should really be
    made clear to the congregation that this practice is disallowed, but
    that if they (the laity) wish to say their 3 Hail Mary’s, etc., silently
    after the priest leaves the altar, fine. I have no problem at all with
    the abolition of these prayers. They were ordered by the Holy See for a specific
    intention (the restoration of religious freedom in Russia–see Pius XI’s
    allocution announcing this intention–*not* the conversion of Russia),
    and the Holy See has since determined otherwise.

  64. Caeremoniarius says:

    Dear Lindsay,

    The prayers after Mass are indeed just that–after Mass. Theoretically,
    there is nothing to prevent people from saying them privately. But why
    should the priest lead the congregation in doing them before leaving the
    altar? They have been suppressed, along with the indulgences connected
    with them; for whatever reason, the Holy See determined that the public
    recitation of these prayers, priest and people together, was to cease.
    In practice, too, people have been known to get *very* huffy if the
    priest won\’t say these prayers after Low Mass. It should really be
    made clear to the congregation that this practice is disallowed, but
    that if they (the laity) wish to say their 3 Hail Mary\’s, etc., silently
    after the priest leaves the altar, fine. I have no problem at all with
    the abolition of these prayers. They were ordered by the Holy See for a specific
    intention (the restoration of religious freedom in Russia–see Pius XI\’s
    allocution announcing this intention–*not* the conversion of Russia),
    and the Holy See has since determined otherwise.

  65. Scott Smith says:

    Professor Basto:

    If I may, the power of the document Rubricarum Instructum, by revoking even immemorial customs that stand in the way of the rubrics being promulgated, is not without authority. However it only revokes that which stands in the way of the new rubrics having the full force of law in the Roman Rite.

    I do not intend to debate the strength of the document. I intend to discuss the particulars of the document as it relates to contrary practices. Once the relationship is clearly determined the strength of the document is conceded and the question is closed. There is not a question about the gravitas of the entire document, the question is about the gravitas of the specific norm in question: #503 of the document.

    As to the total observance of the new rubrics, I will say that the clause revoking any thing to the contrary is for juridical value. If the Pope wanted it to be absolutely clear that he expected complete and total observance of the new rubrics with prejudice to any former rubrics, I can very well say that he should have borrowed more from Divino Afflatu, here are some excerpts:

    “Therefore, by the authority of these letters, we first of all abolish the order of the psaltery as it is at present in the Roman breviary, and we absolutely forbid the use of it after the 1st day of January of the year 1913.”

    “At the same time we proclaim the penalties prescribed in law against all who fail in their office of reciting the canonical hours everyday; all such are to know that they will not be satisfying this grave duty unless they use this our disposition of the psaltery.

    “We command, therefore, all the patriarchs, archbishops, bishops, abbots and other prelates of the church, not excepting even the cardinal archpriests of the patriarchal basilicas of the city, to take care to introduce at the appointed time into their respective dioceses, churches or monasteries, the psaltery with the rules and rubrics as arranged by us; and the psaltery and these rules and rubrics we order to be also inviolately used and observed by all others who are under the obligation of reciting or chanting the canonical hours. In the meanwhile it shall be lawful for everybody and for the chapters themselves, provided the majority of the chapter be in favor, to use duly the new order of the psaltery immediately after its publication.

    “This we publish, declare, sanction, decreeing that these our letters always are and shall be valid and effective, notwithstanding apostolic constitutions and ordinances, general and special, and everything else whatsoever to the contrary. Wherefore, let nobody infringe or temerariously oppose this page of our abolition, revocation, permission, ordinance, precept, statue, indult, mandate and will. But if anybody shall presume to attempt this let him know that he will incur the indignation of almighty God and of his apostles the blessed Peter and Paul.”

    This clearly forbids doing anything to the contrary and carries with it penalties for not completely observing the new rubrics.

    As to the reaction of the community, I did not intend to refer to people who happen to attend the TLM. My intention was to refer to juridical communities such as the FSSP. I would hope that they would be aware of the rubrics of the 1962 Missal.

    Rumors are not the same as lies, however un-corroborated and however erroneous they may be.

    You stated: “Up to today, we weren’t remembering general rubric 503, and we weren’t remembering Rubricarum instructum item 3, despite the texts being under our noses.” However we were remembering these specific points on and around September 14, 2007 on posts on this blog.

    I even posted on the topic on the 16th of September bring up specifically the grammar of the construction and its bearing on the topic at hand. Again I will say that it assumes the omission of the Confiteor at the time of Communion without forbidding it. The clause of the rubric in question that suggests to some that the Confiteor has been abolished is an ablative absolute, not an imperative nor is it an hortatory subjunctive construction. My Latin isn’t great, but if I’m way off, someone please tell me! After all if the rubric was intending to stop the practice of reciting the second Confiteor and it’s absolution, it could have done so very clearly, rather than implying its legitimate omission with an ablative absolute.

    While this topic may get on many people’s nerves, it is not compromising the nerve of ecclesiastical discipline.

  66. “There’s a lot of begging of the question going on.”

    At the rate we’re going, there’s a lot of just about anything going on.

    I’ve noticed that a number of us write at considerable length, on matters that were already settled with at least some citation. (How many times does someone have to reprint the text of Rubric 503, for example?) Those of my brethren in Christ who are considering a long treatise on the finer points of the Mass, might consider a closer review of what has already been written. I admit that this could take some time as the number of comments gets past one hundred.

    There may be a lesson in that as well.

  67. “Again I will say that it assumes the omission of the Confiteor at the time of Communion without forbidding it.”

    Well, if something is not forbidden, and is subsequently not omitted as a result, then the omission is not assumed to begin with, is it?

  68. dad29 says:

    I think it is the most significant aspect of the Confiteor debate.

    A hearty “hear, hear” for ALL of your comment, Aaron. We are on the same page, same score, same interpretation.

    And you said it more civilly than I would have!

  69. Scott Smith says:

    Aaron Sanders,

    I can appreciate your concern about customs contrary to or in addition to law. This whole issue seems to be about this concern of doing exactly what the book says and what can happen when people don’t. I doubt that anyone is really worried about having a Confiteor at communion as if it were wrong in and of itself and completely inappropriate.

    The question still has yet to be definitively settled before discussions such as these come to an end. It isn’t going to be settled here, however well it is discussed.

  70. prof. basto says:

    But Divino Afflatu didn’t took the care to also mention centennial and immemorial
    custom even if worthy of special mention. As for the abrogation of the previous
    rubrics by Rubricarum instructum, its item 2 accomplishes that, just as, in the
    case of Divino Afflatu, the previous psaltery was abolished. Rubricarum
    instructum, art. 2:

    “On the same day, Janurary 1, 1961, the “General Rubrics” of the Roman breviary and missal, as well as the “Additions and Variations” to the rubrics of the Roman breviary and missal according to the bull Divino afflatu of our predecessor St. Pius X, which have hitherto been prefixed to these books, shall become inoperative . As the provisions of the decree, The Reduction of the Rubrics to a Simpler Form , dated March 23, 1955, have been incorporated into this new edition of the rubrics, this general decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites shall likewise become inoperative . Finally, any decrees and replies on doubtful points issued by the same Congregation which do not agree with this new form of rubrics shall be abrograted.”

    Thus, the abolition of the previous rubrics as a matter of written law is
    accomplished by number 2. But, unlike Divino Afflatu, Rubricarum instructum
    took the care of also dealing even with the most die-hard forms of custom, that
    is, the immemorial ones.

    While Divino Afflatu mentioned only that it was to have force “ notwithstanding apostolic constitutions and ordinances, general and special, and everything else
    whatsoever to the contrary”
    , which, as you know, is not sufficient to deal
    with immemorial custom, since, per the general rules of canon law, those must,
    in order to be reppealed, be mentioned by name. Now, John XXIII’s Rubricarum
    instructum was more careful in that regard: after the revocation of the previous
    rubrics – general law – item 3 provided explicitly for the abrogation of special
    norms – indults, etc – and also customs, and in that matter it went really deep,
    by providing for the abrogation of centennial and immemorial custom, going farther
    then Quo primum tempore itself went when promulgating the editio princeps. The
    clause is really impressive, and I quote it again: statues, priveleges, indults, and customs of any kind whatsoever, including those that are centenary and immemorial, even if they are worthy of special and individual mention, shall be revoked if they are opposed to these
    rubrics
    .

    The only thing Rubricarum instructum didn’t do was to remind people of the
    sanctions, but that is not essential. The clauses commanding the new rubrics,
    and doing away with the old, as well as revoking customs, indults, etc, are
    intact. And while the letter does not close reminding those who disobey of the
    wrath of God Almighty and of his Apostles Peter and Paul – yeah, I miss that
    wording – it uses authoritative language very similar to Summorum Pontificum itself.

  71. Peter Karl T. Perkins says:

    Actually, #503 is not a forbidding of anything, Fr. Z.

    The expression, “the Confession and Absolution having been omitted” looks to me like a description of the standard procedure, given the new rubrics; it is not a formula of proscription. The legislation needs a verb of requiring here; it needs to say that the Confession and Absolution shall be or must be omitted. It does not say that. This is not a clear proscription. Since what is not forbidden is allowed, I must agree with Michael Davies that this legislation does not forbid the Second Confiteor; it merely establishes a norm that it not be included.

    Frankly, the entire formulation looks suspicious. It looks very much as if Bugnini was trying to bring about a change and was not sure that it would be accepted. I compare this to the latest GIRM in regard to black vestments. Earlier GIRMs said that they may be replaced by purple vestments. The latest one says that they may continue to be used only where this is an established practice. In the next one, I expect to see them abolished altogether for the N.O.

    My intuition is to reject anything touched by Bugnini’s Consilium unless that is not legally possible. I don’t think that B. really knew how far he might be able to go until he got there. He was not a clairvoyant, only a revolutionary. But he was definitely at work laying down the groudwork for revolution from the very time of his appointment, in 1948. Look how his reform of Holy Week destroyed entrenched devotional customs owing to the time changes for various services. His work was essentially disruptive.

    P.K.T.P.

  72. prof. basto says:

    Comment by Aaron Sanders — 14 February 2008 @ 3:33 pm

    Agreed. Very toughtful comment.

    Even if a custom contra legem can now be created, it would do harm to what is
    expected from the traditionalist movement. We must promote respect for the
    Liturgy we were granted, instead of embarking in contra legem enterprises
    according to our preferences.

  73. prof. basto says:

    “… this legislation does not forbid the Second Confiteor;
    it merely establishes a norm that it not be included”.

    Really, I confess. I’m no canon lawyer, and ecclesiastical legislation is
    sometimes governed by very arcane rules of interpretation.

    But, as a lawyer and a professor of Law,
    I really can’t find a difference between a “norm that it not be included”
    and a “norm of prohibition”.

    If the norm is that it shall not be included, then it is prohibited.

    But human language will always be human language. It never reaches perfection.
    If you want to
    find a reason to argue that the law is not clear enough so as to create an excuse for your violation or wish of violation, it will always be possible to create
    a bizantine thesis, however weak. Nevertheless, if any respect for the Law is
    to be preserved, sound legal interpretation canot allow that to prevail.

    The rule is clear in indicating that confiteor and absolution are to be ommited
    and it also states that the priest is to immediately proceed to the
    giving of Communion. That “immediately” clause means that NOTHING must intervene
    between the reception of the Precious Blood by the Priest and the giving of the
    Eucharist to the faithful, EXCEPT for the Ecce Agnus Dei and Domine, non sum
    dignus, the triple recitation of which is provided for. And, because, up to that
    rubrics, confiteor and absolution used to take place at this point, the norms take
    the trouble of making the reader know that it wasn’t a typo, no-one in the Vatican
    Press forgot to mention the confiteor and absolution. No, they are to be omitted.

    So, after the reception of the Divine Blood by the priest, confiteor and
    absolution omitted, Ecce Agnus and Domine non sum dignus having been said,
    communion of the faithful is to follow immediately.

    The norm explicitly calling for ommission is equivalent to prohibition.

  74. “Since what is not forbidden is allowed… this legislation does not forbid the Second Confiteor; it merely establishes a norm that it not be included.”

    So the difference between forbidding an action, and establishing that it not be included is… what, semantic? Does it not then become a transparent excuse to disregard the lawgiver? Does every nit that is ever picked require the legal weight of a papal bull before it is accepted?

    As to the involvement of Bugnini in the Holy Week reforms, as I have said before, the progress of the liturgical movement was already well underway by the time Bugnini was in position. (I am speaking in terms of decades here.) Granted, his influence was greater after the Council. But by 1948, his resume had consisted of being a professor of liturgy for only a few years. He was a parish priest outside of Rome until just after the war. The influence of Dom Casal and Maria Laach would have been far greater in the mid-1950s.

    And even if he had acted alone, even a stopped clock is right twice a day. To disregard a legislation because of who was behind the closed door when it was signed, without regard to merit, in and of itself HAS no merit.

  75. prof. basto says:

    I’m sorry for having messed the use of italics in my last post.

  76. Father G says:

    This whole debate is getting very old…
    yawn…

  77. “Comment by Father G — 14 February 2008 @ 7:45 pm”

    Now that you mention it, I’m even starting to bore myself.

  78. prof. basto says:

    I’m waiting for something new from Fr. Z so that I move to a different topic.
    But I agree, Father, that what had to be said is already said on this thread.

  79. Louis E. says:

    It seems that this is all part of the ancient “Can he make a stone so big he can’t lift it?” debate,as applied to Popes rather than God.

    The radtrad sedevacantist argument is that Quo Primum forbade all future Popes for eternity from altering the Mass,and Paul IV’s similarly perpetualist Cum Ex Apostolatus Officio IRREVOCABLY excommunicates anyone who tries.This is used by some to claim that the “Freemason” John XXIII was not a valid pope,but as the quote above shows it would also excommunicate Pius X for issuing Divino Afflatu.

    The fact of John XXIII’s motu proprio takes things beyond the argument of whether the issuance of a new Editio Typica of the Missal should be taken as implicitly abrogating the previous.
    Benedict XVI’s remarks that the 1962 was not abrogated implies the answer to this is no but an explicit revocation of pre-1962 renders this irrelevant.Otherwise one might see an interpretation that all old Missals remain valid even when no longer normative.

    There is of course a stated prejudice against “flies in amber” here,and the door being perpetually open to new saints and feasts means keeping an invariant calendar through the generations is virtually insuperable.But I wonder if there might be a case for Orders devoted to specific past missals and calendars with their own parallel sites in cooperation with the dioceses.For example an Order that celebrated the Mass and kept the calendar just as it was at the death of Pope Gregory XVI might satisfy even SSPV types.One might worry that Novus Ordo devotees would establish a Monday Heavy Metal Gay Striptease Mass,Tuesday Twisted Sister FeMinister Mass,Wednesday Inner Child Crayon and Play-Doh Mass,Thursday Frightfully Relevant Theme of the Hour Mass,Friday Everybody Cross-Dress and Dance to the Music of Your Own Kazoo Mass,Saturday Equal Time Fer Pore Ole Satan Mass,Sunday Take Off and Go to the Mall Order…but they wouldn’t have a missal to point to,only the scratch paper from the last Prayer Meeting Perpetual Redesign Committee kaffeeklatsch.

    But allowing Popes to bind all future popes would diminish the scope of legislation to the vanishing point.”Your Holiness,you’ve just excommunicated yourself…Leo XIV decreed perpetually that you had to breathe three times,each between fifty and sixty-three percent of lung capacity,during that prayer,and it’s no good saying the tight shoes made you gasp,Sixtus VI issued a bull stating that all future papal footwear MUST be size eight…”

  80. danphunter1 says:

    I like Larry Scotts preacher bench.
    Great for the lower biceps.

  81. Anonymous says:

    Just to make things even more contentious. It is a fact that every ICKSP mass I have attended, and it has been quite a few now, has included the second Confiteor.

  82. jacobus says:

    There is a deeper, philosophical issue here that I don’t think has been addressed. It is the reason no progress has been made in the debate.

    The deep question, I think, should be: how much power does/should the Holy See have over our liturgy?

    Of course, as modern Catholics we drink in a kind of super-ultramontanism with our mother’s milk, wielding the authority of the pope against Protestants, the SSPX, the Orthodox, et. al. But whereas having Peter as the established rock on which to build our faith and morals is a fundamental principle of the Church, does he have the same power over our liturgical minutiae? In practice, yes. But is it valid authority?

    Can we see why the Orthodox are scared to death of full communion?

  83. prof. basto says:

    Jacobus,

    My answer to you is the solemn canon contained in the Dogmatic Constitution
    Pastor Aeternus, issued by the First Vatican Ecumenical Council:

    So, then, if anyone says that the Roman Pontiff has merely an office of supervision and guidance, and not the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the whole Church, and this not only in matters of faith and morals, but also in those which concern the
    discipline and government of the Church
    dispersed throughout the whole world; or that he has only the principal part, but not the absolute fullness, of this supreme power; or that this power of his is not ordinary and immediate both over all and each of the Churches and over all and each of the pastors and faithful: let him be anathema.

    So, it is not ultramontanism, it is an article of Catholic Faith proclaimed
    in a dogmatic document. The Pope’s power extends not only over faith and morals,
    but also to Church discipline, and that includes liturgical minutiae.

    Another quote from the same document, chapter III:

    Wherefore we teach and declare that, by divine ordinance, the Roman Church possesses a pre-eminence of ordinary power over every other Church, and that this jurisdictional power of the Roman Pontiff is both episcopal and immediate. Both clergy and faithful, of whatever rite and dignity, both singly and collectively, are bound to submit to this power by the duty of hierarchical subordination and true obedience, and this not only in matters concerning faith and morals, but also in those which regard the discipline and government of the Church throughout the world.

    We may not like the liturgical reforms, but they are certainly valid.
    When it comes to discipline, the Pope is not endowed with the same protection
    that safeguards the Church and his magisterium from error in matters of Faith
    and morals. So, in the disciplinary minutiae, he can make mistakes, but still,
    he is the Vicar of Christ, and is to be obeyed.

    We may regret the use that was made of that power by Paul VI, but that
    is between him and God, and does not affect the validity of the reforms that
    were mandated. To deviate from dogma and try to support a doctrine of limitation
    of papal power that goes against Vatican I teaching does not make sense to me.

  84. Anonymous in Michigan says:

    Breier,
    American Ecclesiastical Review, Vol. 147, July 1962:

    Omission of Confiteor Before Communion

    Question: For some time we know that no Confiteor is to be said henceforth when people receive Holy Communion during Mass, because it has already been said at the foot of the altar. But when we have the blessing of candles, ashes, or palms, there are no prayers at the foot of the altar and therefore no Confiteor at all. Are we therefore to distribute Holy Communion during these Masses without the Confiteor? This procedure does not seem to me to be right.

    Answer: Neither the new code of rubrics nor the new Ritus servandus in celebratione Missae makes any provision for the recitation of the Confiteor in the Masses which have not been prefaced by the prayers at the foot of the altar. Until or unless some such provision is made we are to omit the Confiteor before the distribution of Holy Communion.

  85. David says:

    prof. basto:
    “So, then, if anyone says that the Roman Pontiff has merely an office of supervision and guidance, and not the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the whole Church, and this not only in matters of faith and morals, but also in those which concern the discipline and government of the Church”

    Msgr. Klaus Gamber wrote:

    “However, the term disciplina in no way applies to the liturgical rite of the Mass, particularly in light of the fact that the popes have repeatedly observed that the rite is founded on apostolic tradition (several popes are then quoted in the footnote). For this reason alone, the rite cannot fall into the category of ‘discipline and rule of the Church.’ To this we can add that there is not a single document, including the Codex Iuris Canonici, in which there is a specific statement that the pope, in his function as the supreme pastor of the Church, has the authority to abolish the traditional rite, In fact, nowhere is it mentioned that the pope has the authority to change even a single local liturgical tradition. The fact that there is no mention of such authority strengthens our case considerably.

  86. Larry Brooks says:

    I didb’t get in on this earlier. Missals were not abrogated in the sense you use the term. But in the period oh say 1955 through 1962 a great many changes occured in the liturgy. I have hand Missals going back to 1888. The St. Joseph Daily missal of 1950 has a confiteor before Holy Communion but the SJDM of 1961 does not. It was in this period that the Dialog Mass was started with the laity making some of the responses in Latin. The 1888 “Manual of Prayers” also shows a Confiteor before Holy Communion.

  87. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    Some day historians may muse that the greatest harm to the liturgy was the encroaching sense among the faithful that it’s not something handed down from time immemorial that the Church safeguards and holds in trust for all, but rather something that is subject to change at any time by the will of an individual pope.

  88. Jordan Potter says:

    Dr. Frantantuono: but rather something that is subject to change at any time by the will of an individual pope.

    or an individual bishop or priest or layman or laywoman.

    It is true, however, that although the liturgy is handed down from time immemorial and safeguarded by the Church, it is also subject to change at almost any time by the will of the Holy See.

  89. Paul Cavendish says:

    The late Mgr. Frederick McManus gives some intersting chapters on the changes in the missal under John XXIII in his book ‘Handbook for the New Rubrics’. He states quite clearly (p.102, 1961 edition) that “The Confiteor, Misereatur, and Indulgentiam are omitted before Communion at Mass..”.

    He also gave several intersting answers in ‘Worship’ explaining the reforms and changes of 1960-62 (e.g. the change not mentioned in Rubricarum Instructum of abolishing bows to the Cross at the Holy Name etc).

    My understanding is that Mgr. ‘Fred’ was a Consultor to the Preparatory Conciliar Commission, a peritus to the Conciliar Commission on the Liturgy and a Consultor to the Consilium – so pretty well versed in what was going on I would have thought.

  90. danphunter1 says:

    Jordan Potter,
    Balderdash!

  91. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    But the trend in the Church’s recent history has been overemphasis of the Holy See’a authority over the liturgy, I would submit. What impact does this have on the faithful? They get the message that liturgy is “mere discipline” that can be altered at whim. That doesn’t foster love and affection. It creates a rootless people without a past.

  92. “But the trend in the Church’s recent history has been overemphasis of the Holy See’a authority over the liturgy…”

    From the reading I’ve done, they were saying the same thing in Western Europe, particularly in France, for more than a century following Trent.

  93. danphunter1 says:

    Mr. Alexander,
    There is no comparison betwixt the two situations.

  94. george says:

    In responding to my inquiry concerning the 2nd Confiteor, the FSSP’s North American District Supervisor on 10-11-02 stated in paragraph 3 of his letter:

    “In 1989, the Ecclesia Dei Commission clarifieed that the retention of the second Confiteor was permitted for solemn or sung Masses, or a low Mass in those places where it had been the custom. It has been a custom (but not a rule) in most Fraternity houses. However, there is no obligation to use it, and, where the dialogue Mass is the norm, it seems unnecessary to repeat it.”

    Paragraphs 1 and 2 pointed out how in the 1950′s the dialogue Mass effected the use of the 2nd Confiteor in low Masses. I’ll be happy to add paragraphs 1 and 2 of this letter if it would be helpful.

  95. danphunter1 says:

    George,
    Thank you and God bless you.

  96. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    France is indeed the eldest daughter of the Church. As countries go, we owe thanks to France for the role it has played in preserving tradition.

  97. “There is no comparison betwixt the two situations.”

    Well, I maintain that there is. If I could find the book that’s currently packed away, I’d quote from it. I don’t suppose you have anything beyond naysaying.

  98. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    Not just “naysaying”. Simply desirous of liturgical study that goes beyond, “The Holy See can change anything anytime, and you either obey or you disobey.”

  99. RBrown says:

    Some day historians may muse that the greatest harm to the liturgy was the encroaching sense among the faithful that it’s not something handed down from time immemorial that the Church safeguards and holds in trust for all, but rather something that is subject to change at any time by the will of an individual pope.
    Comment by Dr. Lee Fratantuono

    Interestingly enough, the root (or the analog) of the problem can be found in Sacramental Theology.

    There are three different theories of the institution of the Sacrament of Confirmation:

    1. St Thomas: Only Christ can institute a Sacrament, thus it was instituted by Him (non exhibendo sed promittendo).

    2. St Bonaventure: It was instituted by the Apostles.

    3. Alexander of Hales: It was instituted by a Council.

    Thus: If someone embraces #3 (and perhaps #2), the authority of the Pope over liturgy could be seen as reaching beyond safeguarding liturgy to the level of fiat.

  100. danphunter1 says:

    Mr. Alexander,

    There is a lot to be said for naysaying.
    It has kept me out the clutches of Satan, at least to date.

    Just to cite one period in Church history; From the time of the Council of Trent, up until about 1965 there have been relatively few alterations, by the apropriate official’s, in the Ordinary parts of the Mass.
    Since 1965 the faithful have been forced to put up with, in the Sacrifice of Holy Mass alone, not to mention the Divine Office and other liturgical prayers, the stripping away of : The Roman Canon, the more orthodox wording for the Consecration, the correct position of the alter christus in offering Sacrifice to God [ad orientem] and on and on.

    All of this has had a monumental impact on the Lex orandi/Lex credendi and we all know those statistics which back up the loss of faith of millions as a direct result of these recent papally mandated alterations.
    Most people I speak with who are outside of traditional groups, believe that the liturgy is a, “mere discipline”, and not important..

    Before recent history [past 40-50 years] I am told by competent authority, this was not the case.
    God bless you.

  101. Dr. Lee Fratantuono says:

    I wonder if there would ever have been an indult, and then a motu proprio, if every cleric and layman since 1965 had simply said, “I must obey…the Church says to abandon the Tridentine Mass, therefore I must obey.”

  102. Prof. Basto says:

    But St. Thomas is correct on that one.

  103. Dan Hunter:

    First of all, I am no apologist for the last forty years of official liturgical reform. Nothing I have written would suggest this, so I don’t even know why you’ve made it a bone of contention.

    In the years following Trent, even with the exceptions to the standardization of worship in the Western church (Ambrosian, Mozarabic, et cetera), there were traditions in some parts of Europe that did not meet the criteria of longevity, but which were nonetheless within the living memory of its adherents, and would have been tumultuous just the same.

    Yes, the events of this past century were unprecedented since Trent. But there is nothing to suggest that a reform on the order of Trent would never happen again in the history of the Church. To say that does not defend every decision that has been made, but acknowledges where the responsibility ultimately lies.

  104. schoolman says:

    George, that is very helpful. Could you post the other paragraphs of the letter? Also, is there a link to the PCED letter in question that clarifies this point? Finally, was this intended only for FSSP Masses or any Mass according to the 1962 Missal?

  105. danphunter1 says:

    Mr Alexander,
    There is no comparison betwixt the two situations.
    God bless you.
    The “naysayer”

  106. “Comment by danphunter1 — 15 February 2008 @ 12:36 pm”

    Wow, you really got me with that one. I’m outa here…

  107. RBrown says:

    But St. Thomas is correct on that one.
    Comment by Prof. Basto

    And almost all the others.

  108. Brian Mershon says:

    I think perhaps what is probably happening is two-fold. Fr. Z can correct me if my presumptions are incorrect.

    1. Fr. Z gets a LOT of web traffic on this topic, which boosts his blog hit ratings.

    2. By continuing to post it, he hopes to conduct a PR campaign with the PCED to have them address it at some length, perhaps because Fr. Z’s personal preference is against the use of the second confiteor, AND as has been obvious for quite some time, he is not a big fan of the FSSP, ICR and other traditional orders.

    I could be wrong, so if I am, Fr. please correct me. Being a PR professional myself, I am often correct, although not always, when I find others conducting PR campaigns.

    My vote is for us to move on. Do we REALLY want the PCED to come down with a document to clarify EVERY single thing to be mandated from on high for the TLM? Do we really?

    No one has ever addressed the question I raised previously: “If the Holy See has to mandate EVERY detail of the Mass, how does legitimate organic development take place? Will we know it when we see it?

    How will “organic development” of our liturgy impact our relations with the Orthodox Churches, as they do not emphasize “organic development” in the liturgy.

  109. Antiquarian says:

    WHY is there “no comparison?” The two situations are analogous in many ways– but if that fact is in conflict with one’s preferences, one should want to do more than say there is no comparison, one should be able to demonstrate it.

  110. Brian Mershon says:

    rubricians, Latinists and canon lawyers abound…

    but no theologians… Why was the confiteor abolished? Upon what gronds?

    Three words: Archbishop Annibale Bugnini

  111. dad29 says:

    Well, Mr. Mershon, professional flacking is nice.

    Does paranoia come along with the profession?

  112. danphunter1 says:

    Dad 29,
    Since when does an honest quest for truth and enlightenment constitute paranoia?
    Antiquarian: I have demonstrated it already.
    Deo Gratias

  113. Jordan Potter says:

    Brian said: Why was the confiteor abolished? Upon what gronds?

    On the grounds that repeating the Confiteor was not actually necessary. By that time the liturgical reform was already headed in the direction of more “dialogue” — in such Masses, the lay faithful had already spoken the Confiteor. Even in traditional non-dialogue Masses, it was held that the server’s Confiteor was spoken on behalf of the lay faithful present. Since there had already been a penitential rite at the start of Mass, the Church deemed that a second one was superfluous.

    Three words: Archbishop Annibale Bugnini

    Well poisoning fallacy and non sequitur. The Church’s grounds for eliminating the second Confiteor was not “Archbishop Annibale Bugnini,” who in any case did not become an archbishop until 1972. That Bugnini advocated this liturgical reform is not sufficient to establish that the elimination of the second Confiteor was groundless doctrinally, morally, or theologically, or was not lawful or binding.

    as has been obvious for quite some time, [Father Zuhlsdorf] is not a big fan of the FSSP, ICR and other traditional orders

    I’d be interested in seeing any evidence supporting your claim.

    Regarding the above quote from Msgr. Gamber: “However, the term disciplina in no way applies to the liturgical rite of the Mass, particularly in light of the fact that the popes have repeatedly observed that the rite is founded on apostolic tradition”

    But the discipline and government of the Church are also founded on apostolic tradition, so if the supreme jurisdiction of the Pope doesn’t extend to the liturgical rite of the Mass, then by that argument it also would not extend to the discipline and government of the Church, which is absurd. On the contrary, in Mediator Dei no. 60, we read, “the sacred liturgy, as We have said, is entirely subject to the discretion and approval of the Holy See,” and in no. 187, we read, “First of all, you must strive that with due reverence and faith all obey the decrees of the Council of Trent, of the Roman Pontiffs, and the Sacred Congregation of Rites, and what the liturgical books ordain concerning external public worship.”

    Mediator Dei nos.22, 49-50 are also pretty clear:

    22. As circumstances and the needs of Christians warrant, public worship is organized, developed and enriched by new rites, ceremonies and regulations, always with the single end in view, “that we may use these external signs to keep us alert, learn from them what distance we have come along the road, and by them be heartened to go on further with more eager step; for the effect will be more precious the warmer the affection which precedes it.”[25] . . .

    49. From time immemorial the ecclesiastical hierarchy has exercised this right in matters liturgical. It has organized and regulated divine worship, enriching it constantly with new splendor and beauty, to the glory of God and the spiritual profit of Christians. What is more, it has not been slow – keeping the substance of the Mass and sacraments carefully intact – to modify what it deemed not altogether fitting, and to add what appeared more likely to increase the honor paid to Jesus Christ and the august Trinity, and to instruct and stimulate the Christian people to greater advantage.[47]

    50. The sacred liturgy does, in fact, include divine as well as human elements. The former, instituted as they have been by God, cannot be changed in any way by men. But the human components admit of various modifications, as the needs of the age, circumstance and the good of souls may require, and as the ecclesiastical hierarchy, under guidance of the Holy Spirit, may have authorized.

    The Church’s authority to modify the liturgy is undeniable, and in theory it may be exercised at any time. In the concrete, of course, it is not, and cannot, be exercised frequently or at a whim. Nor is it prudent or just to exercise it as drastically and extensively as it was about four decades ago, which was unprecendented in the Church’s experience and inevitably proved disastrous pasotrally. But the authority itself is real, even if capable of being abused.

  114. Prof. Basto says:

    Mr. Potter hits the nail on the head.

  115. Flambeaux says:

    Thank you, Jordan.

  116. Brian Mershon says:

    Jordan Potter,

    I never said Archbishop Annibale Bugnini was an archbishop when he helped to begin the destruction of the Roman rite. But he did end up an Archbishop.

    His memoirs are available for all to see that explain in detail why he did what he did.

    Dad29. (Sigh) Professional flacking? You don’t have an answer than to talk about paranoia? Read Bugnini’s memoirs and Michael Davies.

    Jordan Potter: Does the Mass really begin with the prayers at the foot of the altar? Historically, these were said during the long procession from the sacristy to the Church building. In either case, as someone else clearly demonstrated, the prayers at the foot of the altar are for the priest and the altar boys.

    And at most parishes today, traditional or not, there is AMPLE opportunities for temptations to sin on many accounts from between the first confiteor and the second. Take women’s dress for one…

    Just took a survey from a couple of diocesan priests who offer the TLM and they think this entire topic is misplaced ridiculous.

  117. Scott Smith says:

    Potter does hit an important point at the end of his comment. The authority is real, even if it is abused.

    Thankfully in the Church we have the principle of equity.

  118. Scott Smith says:

    It would be interesting if the prayers at the foot of the altar were indeed part of the procession to the altar as the celebrant’s and ministers’ preparation. But I’d hate to see that confiteor done while walking…just imagine the sight of it! Perhaps it’s current place is well developed liturgically.

  119. danphunter1 says:

    Just because something is deemed as unnecessary does not mean that it has no worth and should not be done.
    Praying a private act of Contrition before recieving the precious Body and Blood of our Saviour is not necessary, yet it is very good that it is done.
    The same with the second Confiteor.

    Many times, at Holy Mass right before Holy Communion, I have been distracted and in a reverie.
    As soon as I hear the altar boys begin the second Confiteor I snap to attention and pray it along with them, in preparation for the reception of our Lord.
    I realize that I should be focused of my own volition, but I have to deal with the stain of Original Sin just like anyone else and the audible Confiteor helps me and many others like me to approach the altar rail with a contrite heart.

    I am truly grateful to God for the second Confiteor.
    Deo Gratias!

  120. schoolman says:

    Yes, according to Fortesque, the confiteor was part of the preparatory prayers that were said while in procession while the chanting of the Introit was in the background. This explains the practice of the confiteor of the faithful before communion. After Trent the prayers were said at the foot of the altar. Interesting, as this is all the stuff or organic development.

  121. danphunter1 says:

    The distance from the vestibule, of my parish church, to the sanctuary is about 30 feet.
    I do not think that from the time the bell rings till the moment Father arrives at the foot of the altar, he could pray all those prayers.
    Also what about when Father comes in from the sacristy to the sanctuary.
    He’d have to be an awful fast prayer.
    God bless.

  122. Geoffrey says:

    I don’t understand what all the debate is about. Isn’t the above-referenced rubric all one needs to know? It seems “case closed” to me.

  123. Integer Vitae says:

    There is a solution so obvious I can’t believe it hasn’t sprung from the lips of any good traditionalist.

    Eliminate the Communion of the Faithful.

    Frequent reception was just an innovation pushed by that modernist, Pope St Pius X. Probably a Mason.

  124. Integer Vitae says:

    By the way– anyone who cites Michael Davies as a source is on shaky ground. He was a fairly good writer and polemicist but no scholar. His research is often shckingly faulty, and the conclusions he draws from it are unconvincing to anyone not already in agreement with him.

  125. Integer Vitae says:

    By the way– anyone who cites Michael Davies as a source is on shaky ground. He was a fairly good writer and polemicist but no scholar. His research is often shockingly faulty, and the conclusions he draws from it are unconvincing to anyone not already in agreement with him.

  126. Brian Day says:

    Eliminate the Communion of the Faithful.

    I.V.,
    LOL. You just made my day!

  127. Jordan Potter says:

    Brian said: I never said Archbishop Annibale Bugnini was an archbishop when he helped to begin the destruction of the Roman rite. But he did end up an Archbishop.

    I know. My comments on your words, “Archbishop Annibale Bugnini” had a certain degree of unseriousness about them, because it seemed to me that I should treat that comment of yours with the seriousness it deserves. For “Archbishop Annibale Bugnini,” or even just “Annibale Bugnini,” was not the grounds or reason the Church removed the second Confiteor.

    Does the Mass really begin with the prayers at the foot of the altar?

    No, the Mass does not start until the Introit concludes. But an act of contrition before Mass is good for the priest, for the servers, and for the congregation. But after Mass begins there is the Kyrie, a penitential rite.

    In either case, as someone else clearly demonstrated, the prayers at the foot of the altar are for the priest and the altar boys.

    By the mid-1900s, the pre-Mass Confiteor of the altar boys was understood as being on behalf of all the people, especially in the dialogue Mass, which was used in some places if not especially widespread.

    And at most parishes today, traditional or not, there is AMPLE opportunities for temptations to sin on many accounts from between the first confiteor and the second. Take women’s dress for one…

    Oh, I know what you mean. Any of the faithful who go up for Communion should be aware of their dispositions and offer God their contrition if needed. As a rule, however, there should not be a need for a repeated communal minor absolution, though.

    Just took a survey from a couple of diocesan priests who offer the TLM and they think this entire topic is misplaced ridiculous.

    A couple, eh? I’d watch out for sampling errors in your survey.

    Really, though, it’s hardly surprising that questions like this should come up, especially since there is a lot of confusion about the second Confiteor. Priests and laity who are new to the 1962 Roman Missal are going to want to find out how to do it right.

    Dan said: Just because something is deemed as unnecessary does not mean that it has no worth and should not be done. Praying a private act of Contrition before recieving the precious Body and Blood of our Saviour is not necessary, yet it is very good that it is done. The same with the second Confiteor.

    But here we are not talking about what the faithful may do privately, but what the liturgical books actually provide in the 1962 Missal.

  128. danphunter1 says:

    Integar Vitae,
    We may make a spiritual communion if we are in a state of mortal sin and were unable to recieve absolution from a priest beforehand.
    Or is that against the rubrics to?

    Its great to see that there are a plethora of I know better-than -the ICKSP-FSSP-St John Vianney-Canon lawyers that frequent this website.
    Ut Prosim.

  129. danphunter1 says:

    Jordan Potter,
    Fair enough.
    Next time I assist at a Mass where the altar boys do not utter the second Confiteor, I shall intone it myself seeing as there is no rubric that orders the faithful not to do this.
    Thank you for the advice, though I do not forsee myself having to do this for a while.
    Not at least until I travel to some other state.
    God bless you.

  130. Jonathan Bennett says:

    I am surprised nobody has picked up on the ending of the revised prayer. Perhaps it should be compared with the endings of the other prayers.

  131. Matt Q says:

    Slightly off topic but still concerns the controversy over the changes of the Tridentine Mass.

    “**Jewish Group Formally Criticizes New Good Friday Prayer**

    Washington, Feb. 15, 2008 (CWNews.com) – The Rabbinical Assembly, an organization of Conservative Jewish leaders, has approved a statement saying that its members are “dismayed and deeply disturbed” by the changes in the Good Friday prayer used by Catholics who follow the 1962 Roman Missal.

    The Rabbinical Assembly backed away from a stronger statement that would have said the changes made by Pope Benedict XVI (bio – news) “cast a harsh shadow” over relations between Catholics and Jews. The group asked for “clarification” of the intent behind the prayer, which asks God to grant that Jews will come to recognize Christ as their Savior.

    The revised Good Friday prayer, unveiled by the Vatican earlier this month, replaces a text that had referred to the “blindness” of the Jewish people. Pope Benedict eliminated that reference in an attempt to avoid giving offense to Jews. But public reaction from many Jewish leaders has suggested that the revised prayer, with its reference to conversion, remains a stumbling-block.

    The prayer in question will be said in the Good Friday liturgy only in those Catholic communities that use the traditional liturgy of the 1962 Missal. The prayer will be said only in Latin.”

    **Blah blah blah!**

    We have the right to pray for everyone, including the Jews. What’s the matter them? The more they carry on about this, in my opinion, the more they validate the prayer.

  132. Anchoright says:

    So much bla about whether a second confiteor is evil. I’d comment to.. but wait! I have a life to live.

  133. dad29 says:

    I would respectfully add that anyone questioning the authority of the Holy See on liturgy could take a hard look at Canon 2 (1983)

    Can. 2 For the most part the Code does not define the rites which must be observed in celebrating liturgical actions. Therefore, liturgical laws in force until now retain their force unless one of them is contrary to the canons of the Code.

    In effect, this Canon reserves all liturgical regulation to the Pope or his designees (e.g., PCED, Divini Cultus)

    Brian, you seem to have confused PR goals (increasing stat-counter numbers) with disseminating the truth. That’s either the sign of a sick mind (paranoia) or worse.

    Take your choice.

    As to Mgr ‘Bugsy’ Bugnini: the “well-poisoning” and “non-sequitur” comments are absolutely dead-on and sufficient.

  134. prof. basto says:

    It is off-topic, but other off-topic messages have already been posted in this
    thread, and this one is, i.m.o., important:

    When attending an Extraordinary Form Mass, are priests and those of the faithful
    desiring to receive the Sacrament of the Altar required toabide by the
    rules of eucharistic fast contained in Pius XII’s
    Apostolic Constitution Christus Dominus and appended Instruction issued by the
    Supreme Sacred Congregation for the Holy Office on January 6th, 1953
    or are they only bound by the less restrictive rules of modern canon law, that
    is, the one-hour fast that is required for Communion in an ordinary form Liturgy
    (CIC 919 §1)?

  135. george says:

    at schoolman’s request, hereafter is the letter I received from the North American District Supervisor of the FSSP dated Oct 11, 2002:

    “Thank you for your recent inquiry concerning the second Confiteor.

    “Before the advent of the “dialogue” Mass (and still in the sung or solumn Mass), the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar were recited solely by the celebrant and his ministers. It is their private preparation for the function they are to discharge in the sanctuary. Hence, before Communion of the Faithful, the Confiteor was recited again on behalf of those who were to communicate as their preparation for Holy Communion.

    “In the 1950′s with the introduction of the “dialogue” Mass, the faithful began to respond to the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar with the servers, including the Confiteor. Thus when the Roman Missal was republished in 1962, it was decided to drop the second Confiteor since the “dialogue” Mass now seemed to be the custom in most places. This was not, as such, a change in the Missal since the prayers to be recited before the Communion of the Faithful are not prescribed in the Ordo Missae, but had been borrowed from the rite of distribution of Holy Communion in the Roman Ritual.

    “In 1989, the Ecclesia Dei Commission clarified that the retention of the second Confiteor was permitted for solemn or sung Masses, or a low Mass in those places where it had been the custom. It has been the custom (but not a rule) in most Fraternity houses. However, there is not obligation to use it, and, where the “dialogue” Mass is the norm, it seems unnecessary to repeat it.”

    FYI, there was not any reference or link provided regarding the Commission 1989 clarification.

  136. Scott Smith says:

    Prof. Basto,

    I would say that the recent law minimizing the Eucharistic Fast for the Latin Rite does indeed derogate the former more strict regulation, even for celebrations according to the more ancient form. With this, it would seem to be a violation of canon law for a priest to require more than the current law of the Church requires when administering the Sacrament of Holy Communion within or outside of Mass.

  137. Jordan Potter says:

    an organization of Conservative Jewish leaders

    Conservative Jewish leaders, eh? Their concern is duly noted, as I also note that Orthodox Jews regard Conservative Jews to be just as Jewish as the Catholic Church regards Emanuel Milingo’s Moonie-affiliated organisations to be Catholic.

  138. Jeff says:

    I think the last point about “having been omitted” is decisive…

    …about as decisive a suppression as that of the Old Mass itself.

    I used to think that the argument that the Old Mass was never suppressed when the New Mass was published was ridiculous special pleading by traditionalists. And in those days, almost all non-trad orthodox Catholics agreed.

    But it seems they were right.

    And apparently that’s because when you suppress a custom and want to actually prohibit it by law, you have to be EXPLICIT.

    You have to say something like, “This is now being suppressed and no on is allowed to do it any more…”

    You can’t just say, “having been omitted”.

    So, I think there is still an argument that it is permissible to use the second confiteor.

    We use it at Old St. Mary’s in Washington DC and we always have.

    I wouldn’t object strenuously if it were removed. And if I were the pastor, I would probably try to phase it out with regret.

    But I don’t see any definitive argument against its use here.

    Most priests will give the altar boys absolution when they say it. One priest refuses, and leaves them with heads bowed, wondering what’s going on.

  139. Richard says:

    I’ve come late to this discussion and haven’t read all the comments but I offer the following for what they’re worth.
    1)I have about 10 or more pre-Vatican II Missals I’ve collected from St. Vincent DePaul and Salvation Army resale shops over the years and half of them have the second Confiteor and blessing before Communion.
    2) We’ve attended Mass at an ICK parish nearby (25 miles one way) for almost 10 years now and the Pastor and any visiting or substituting priest always says the Misereatur and Indulgentiam after a Confiteor is said by the servers or deacon.
    ROC

  140. D. Sp. says:

    Laudetur JS CHS!

    I´ve also come some late to this discussion and also to this whole blog. I know this blog and the page wdtprs only since I surched some information about the new Good-friday-prayer discussion and I left a comment to the title “The new Good-friday prayer…” of Father Z. (see there!). So let me just introduce myselfe to You: I´m a catholic student from Germany – and let me therefor ask You to excuse my English that is not that perfect. I enjoy this side and blog very much and I like the style of discussion.

    To the theme here: It was for me a great progress in knowledge as I went through the comments of 14th of Feb., especially those form Chad (9.49), Breier (10.10), Prof. Basto (11.44)[12.31] and S. Smith (2.03)[and then again Prof. Basto and Aaron Sanders].

    First Chad stressed on Rubr. Instr. item 3, and the question, which then arised in me was just asked by Breier, if the 2./3. Conf. is really opposed to the new rubrics. Then Prof.Basto maid the point by stressing rub. 503. (Special thanks to Prof. Basto – for all his comments, that are always very clear – I like the clear jurisprudentical style – it always helps in a good discussion.) So I was nearly convinced that now there should not be any further question.

    But then there was the also real good objection (against Basto): the matter of consuetudo contra legem by S. Smith (2.03). The answer from Prof. Basto then did not convince me – so there is still this problem of contra-legem customs. I will come to that point.

    But as first result we should hold – and not going behind that point in our discussion (and that`s the fine thing in Your discussions that I really like: you can really learn some things, you are really discussing, i. e. realy taking the arguments seriously, and then make/do a progress – and so I did, because before I red Your arguments I had an other opinion [that the Conf. is allowed or a cons. praeter legem] and now I revised it): the rubrics clearly forbid the Conf., it is/can be only a consetudo c o n t r a legem.

    More about in my netxt comment.

    In CHo per Mam
    D. S.

  141. D. Sp. says:

    Laudetur JS CHS!

    So to the consuet.-contra-legem problem. Though I praised Prof. Basto for his clear comments and I was nearly convinced by is argumentation on Feb. 14th, I see still (1) a problem in his argumentation (besides (3) the special problem of contra-legem customs) and (2) I see some confusion in the whole discussion, confusion between a custum and a law.

    To (1): Though Rub. Inst. #3 says, that all opposed customs (etc.) shall be revoked (as also Chad pointed it [9.44]) and rub. 503 shows, that the Conf. is really opposing the rubr. (as Prof. Basto stressed [10.10]) I thought against about that stuff and went to the CIC and now it seems to me not that clear any more , if that would really probate, that the Conf. is abrogated/revoked, if it is an immemorable custom. Why?

    Because if You look at CIC can.28 you learn that an immemorial custom need to be revoked explicitly ( by express mention). But is then Rub. Inst.#3 enough – or, my question, is it even legal? I really don´t know and perhaps somebody can help me ( perhaps Prof. Basto, perhaps any canon-lawer). I dont know if “by express mention” means, that this express mention must be concret (“speciallissima”)/individual or is it enough to mention such a custom in general? Rub. inst. mentions the custom of 2./3. Conf. not individual/as such/concret/expressis verbis, but only says in general, that all such customs shall be revoked. Well, it says also, that this shall also include the customs, that should be mentioned individually, but this seems to me – excuse me – “tricky” or, as I said before, illegal (better: not fullfilling the condition given in c. 28). Because if You have to enerprete can 28 this way, that You have to make a special, individual/concrete mention, then it seems to me not beeing enouhg to mention the customs (etc). in a general way.
    So can anybody tell me how to enterprete can 28 and if my reasoning then is valid?

    But then let us come to (2). I think there is some big confusion and by clearing it we will see that the problem discussed in (1) is not important for our question, because the Rub. Inst. #3 is only relevant on customs (etc.) but not on explicit laws! And because the Conf. at that time was no custom but a law (in the canonical sense), it is just abrogated by rub. 503 (on the principle of CIC c. 20). So for our question Rub. Inst. #3 is irrelevant.

    And also irrelevant to the question of abrogation/revokation the Conf. in 1961 is CIC c. 28. Only relevant is there c. 20 – for the reason, that, as I said, at that point of time you could not think about the Conf. as a custom, but as an explicit law. Or am I not right, that an explicit, approbatet “lex” cant fall under “consuetudo” in the canonical sense? (Can some lawer answer me this question? – I think that´s exclusive: a written law is not a custom (in the canonical sense).)

    So therefor it is very clear, without any long deliberation concerning Rub. Inst. #3 and c.28, just by c. 20 that with the rub. 503 the old lex of praying the Conf. is derogated. it´s just that easy (though, as I said in my preceding comment, I myselfe started up with an other opinion – but we have to learn…).

    And perhaps it is much easyer: Am I not right that it is a general law of all liturgical stuff, that you are not allowed to put in some things into liturgy, that are not entailed in the rubrics? (is it written anywhere?). If so, then even without clear prescription in 503 the introducing of the Conf. would be contra legem. more: all such things would not only be praeter legem, but always contra legem.

    So far so clear (or not??). Now (3) after that point of time – now – the Conf. is a case of custom. and, as stated, clearly of custom contra legem. So we are at S. Smith again. And I still see his questions and objections unanswered (- sorry, Prof. Basto!…).

    So can anybody tell me the differences between (a) de- or abbogation [that´s the same, isnt it?] (b)reprobation and ( c) revoking?

    And can anybody help me if there are good/justified reasons and what they are for (d) introducing a cnew custom, that is contra legem, (e) to tolerate such contra-legem-customs and (f) even promot/support such customs?

    In CHo per Mam
    D.S.