We are coming up on the 2nd anniversary of the implementation of the Holy Father’s "emancipation proclamation" Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum.
You would that that, by now, enough time had passed for Holy Church’s shepherds to have at least sifted out the misinformation about the Holy Father’s provisions so that when speaking to their flocks, they could provide an accurate commentary.
This comes to us from the parish bulletin for 6 Sept from St. Pius and St. Patrick (I think they must be combined) in Portland, Maine.
The parish is staffed by Jesuits.
THE LATIN MASS
Many bishops feel their role has been undermined by Pope Benedict [From the onset, the writer wants to pit the Pope against the bishops.] who appears to allow priests to opt for the Latin Mass regardless of the attitude of local bishops. ["appears"? The writer should perhaps read the Pope’s provisions in Summorum Pontificum. The decision is now in the hands of pastors… who, btw, cannot simply ignore people who want the older form of Mass.] The view that the ordinary form of the Mass (in English) is in some way deficient, finds no place with these bishops. [Bad writing. Who are "these bishops"… the "many" referred to earlier? The "local bishops" referred to later? What does "local" mean, here. The bishops around Portland, ME? Diocesan ordinaries and auxiliaries?] A priest’s taste or preference is irrelevant. [HUH? Okay… if this is true, then perhaps more priests would be using the normative book, the Missale Romanum, in Latin, and would have Gregorian chant – which has pride of place in all the Church’s sacred music. Need I go on?] The single most pressing reason why the bishops [once again with "the bishops"] defend the ordinary form of the Mass, is the absence of any role for the laity. [This writer doesn’t really have a clue about what he is saying, does he. Watch for the tired clichés.. which you can feel are right around the corner…] They were little more than spectators [winner winner chicken dinner!] of what the celebrant was doing at the altar; in practice this meant many of them concentrated [wait for it…] on their own private devotions. It is an established principle of good liturgy to encourage the active participation of all those taking part in the Mass. [It helps if you know what "active participation" actually means. Now watch this incredible blunder of reasoning…] Implicit [!] in this directive is the rejection of any discrimination against girls and women among those who assist at Mass, such as altar servers, readers and extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist. [Just.Plain.Dumb. The writer clearly thinks that "active participation" essentially means carrying stuff around or doing what the priest does.]
The Latin Mass can take its proper but necessarily marginal place in the life of the Catholic Church.
I am guessing that the "Fr. Bob" here is the Fr. Robert F. Regan, S.J. listed in the parish bulletin. He is not the pastor, but rather is on the staff. But clearly, something like this would have the imprimatur of the pastor.
Again, after a couple of years, you would think something this staggeringly sloppy would have gone the way of the Dodo.
We still have a lot of work to do… and the biological solution still requires a little more time.
In the meantime, I remember writing about Portland, ME and Summorum Pontificum. The bishop in Portland, Most. Rev. Richard J. Malone, implemented the older form of Mass at the Cathedral there. The "local bishop" can’t be feeling too undermined by Pope Benedict.
BTW… doesn’t this sound an awful lot like that editorial in The Tablet? aka RU-486?