Canon Law Conference

I am attending a Canon Law Conference held at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe south of La Crosse, WI.

There are some distinguished people here. Archbp. Burke is a mainstay of the conference.

I was pleased to find other friends and some blogging notables.

The WDTPRS parodohymnodist Tim Ferguson is here. Fr John Boyle of Southwark has come. Dr Ed Peters of In the Light of the Law is attending.

I will have some photos eventually. There is no phone signal/service up here.

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54 Responses to Canon Law Conference

  1. What an awesome event!

    It is so good that such learned minds are getting together to discuss an important area of the Faith. Hopefully the Church will be bolstered and strengthened through such efforts.

    I would love it if one day God lead me down a path which lead me to the possibility of studying for and obtaining a Canon Law degree. (But I think that would entail me winning the lottery to pay off the tuition + my law school loans).

    My prayers are with all the Canon Lawyers and attendees.

  2. dans0622 says:

    Good for you, Father. Wish I could be there.

    Dan

  3. Emilio III says:

    Being there would be nice, but having that new church here would be even nicer…

  4. JosephMary says:

    I would love to visit there one day. (the church that Burke built).

    I know the Franciscans of the Immaculate friars are also there.

  5. Elle says:

    The side altars at the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe are beautiful…nicer than many Churches.

    ArchBishop Burke being the mainstay of the conference doesn’t surprise me one bit … a truly holy man to boot…

  6. theloveofwisdome says:

    Father Z!!!

    Please!!

    Would you be so kind as to ask someone qualified as what exactly “never abrogated” means in Summorum Pontificum? I really want to understand precisely what this means. This statement seems to fly in the face of previous legislation. I know the pope interprets canon law, not us- but how exactly is he interpreting it?
    How does this “never abrogated” statement square with:

    1) Missale Romanum 30 April 1969
    2) Constitutione Apostolica 20 October 1969
    3) Celebrationis Eucharistiae 26 March 1970 by the CDW on behalf of the Pope
    4) Instructione de Constitutione 14 June 1971 By the CDW , with the approval of the Pope

    I don’t understand how it makes sense, canonically speaking, that it was “never abrogated”. Could you PLEASE look into this for us???? [It has been looked into already. Benedict XVI, the Supreme Pontiff, the Vicar of Christ, the Church’s Legislator, says it was never abrogated. And I think you will not find a text before Benedict XVI’s determination that stated that it was abrogated. So, I think we only need to determine why, really, you are asking the question.]

  7. DHippolito says:

    There is no phone signal/service up here.

    Fr. Z., you mean to say that you’ve found someplace in the Continental United States that does not have Internet capability?

    Wow….

    That’s probably more newsworthy than the conference…. :D

  8. Hieronymus says:

    Yikes, loveofwisdome! Looks like someone is upset about the Holy Father’s decision to stop letting the bishops treat us like unwanted stepchildren.

    Perhaps I am misreading your post, but you come across as one quite desperate to prove that the traditional Mass was abrogated.

  9. Sleepyhead says:

    Uh-oh… we can already hear the avalanche of emails Father Z will get asking him what Canon Law says about such-and-such a topic.

  10. Animadversor says:

    Hieronymus, it doesn’t necessarily follow that theloveofwisdome is opposed to Summorum Pontificum. The questioner could be entirely in favor of the widespread celebration of the older form and be delighted that the Holy Father has done what He has, but nevertheless have difficulties with the logic of the matter. I confess that I have a similar concern. Pope Benedict clearly states in SP that the typical edition of that Missal was anno 1962 promulgatam et numquam abrogatam. But in the same paragraph He refers to other documents that imposed conditions on celebration according to that Missal, and He then goes on to say that He’s replacing those conditions with His own: Conditiones vero a documentis antecedentibus “Quattuor abhinc annos” et “Ecclesia Dei” pro usu huius Missalis statutae, substituuntur ut sequitur:. So perhaps it is best to say that the Missal of 1962 was never abrogated, but that the right to celebrate according to it was modified by both Quattuor abhinc annos and Ecclesia Dei, and then finally by Summorum Pontificum.

  11. theloveofwisdome says:

    No, I LOVE the TLM. I just want to make sense of it all. Doesn’t make a lick of sense to me.

  12. Jerry says:

    @theloveofwisdome – “Would you be so kind as to ask someone qualified as what exactly “never abrogated” means in Summorum Pontificum?”

    You stand a better chance of getting an explanation if you politely and humbly approaching the owner of one of the canon law blogs and asking if they might address your questions in their blog when they have time. I suggest preparing brief but specific questions, including quotes from each of the four documents you feel conflict with the Holy Father’s statement that the 1962 liturgy was never abrogated. I suspect most canonists are not going to have the time or inclination to participate in the fishing expedition you have presented here.

  13. theloveofwisdome says:

    In addition to the seeming abrogation of the the TLM in the 4 texts above I mention above, another of the things that troubles me is understanding the fact that there was once an ‘indult’ for the mass. The 1984 & 1988 indults presuppose that it was against the law to use the TLM- ‘abrogated’ if you will. An indult is an exception for a rule- the rule then, is the old mass is normally not allowed- but under certain circumstances (by means of an indult) it is. But now, the it seems that the indult (and therefore the law against the mass) has been undermined by the fact by the fact that the mass was “never abrogated” … what gives??

  14. Enjoy the beauty of this hallowed place, Fr. Z!
    Greetings to T. Ferguson and Dr. Peters, as well as our beloved Archbishop Burke!
    I, also, wish I could be there.

  15. I have no intention of following this combox down a rabbit hole, but the term “abrogate” means to “abolish or replace completely” in contast to “derogate” which means to “abolish or change in part.” As, from the promulgation of the new Missale Romanum in 1969, it has always been possible, with permission, to use the 1962 Missal, the new rite did not “abolish or replace completely” the older liturgy. If it did, no permission to use it could have been given.

    This is unlike the new Code of Canon Law, which, in 1983, abrogated the entire 1917 Code and other canonical legislation up to 1983. This means that no pre-1983 law that is not included in the new code has any force of law whatsoever. It does not mean, however that older law can not be evidenced to help explain current law, but it has no legal force of its own.

    That this is obviously not the case for the old Missal, which continued to be used (with permission) after 1969, it should be obvious that the old Missal was not abrogated.

  16. One further point. That permission is necessary to use a liturgical rite has nothing to do with whether it is “abrogated” or not. For example, even before 1969, some priests were forbidden to use the old Roman Rite: e.g. Byzantine Rite priests and, in the Latin Rite itself, Dominican priests. Although it was possible to give them permission: e.g. by granting biritual faculties to the Byzantine’s or by a special petition to the sacred congregation for Dominicans. And the ability to use the rite would be taken away from Roman priests too, by suspending their faculties.

    Even if permission were given to no one to use a rite that would not “abrogate” it. It would only be abrogated if the ability to give permission were itself abolished.

  17. TJerome says:

    Father Z, enjoy your time at the conference. What an absolutely sublime Church building. It just shows that beautiful NEW Catholic Churches are still possible. Best, Tom

  18. TJerome says:

    Father Thompson, was that rule necessitated because the Church wanted to preserve those ancient Rites?

  19. Rather than let this go down the “rabbit hole,” I have reposted my comment on abrogation over at Dominican Liturgy:

    http://dominican-liturgy.blogspot.com/

    Rather than run down a rabbit hole here, those who want to discuss my comment can do so there.

  20. shane says:

    As I understand, Quo Primum expressely allowed rites older than 200 years to continue being said. What, therefore, is the current judicial status of pre-Tridentine Latin rites? Is it permissible for any Latin priest to celebrate the Sarum rite, for example?

  21. shane says:

    Forget that question – I just seen Fr Thompson’s comment above.

  22. Father: Will you be at Mass tomorrow (11AM Solemn Mass with the Archbishop)??!!! My brothers and I are serving. I’d love to meet you!

  23. C. says:

    it has always been possible, with permission, to use the 1962 Missal

    Really? Do you have a paper trail on that?

    I don’t challenge the Holy Father’s truthfulness, but your (narrow, positivist) interpretation of his meaning.

  24. C. says:

    Sorry, rather than let myself be the one who gets blamed for “pushing Alice”: feel free, Fr. Thompson, to post the paper trail on your own site, if you find it.

  25. robtbrown says:

    it has always been possible, with permission, to use the 1962 Missal

    Really? Do you have a paper trail on that?
    I don’t challenge the Holy Father’s truthfulness, but your (narrow, positivist) interpretation of his meaning.
    Comment by C

    The qualifier is “with permission”. The question of abrogation or derogation is important, but it is no secret that many bishops and religious superiors were putting the hammer down on priests who wanted to use the 1962 Missal.

  26. Agnes says:

    Missed ya by *that* much! Blessings, Father. Enjoy.

  27. shadowlands says:

    ‘The WDTPRS parodohymnodist Tim Ferguson is here.’

    I like visiting here, because I always hear a new word that I don’t have a clue, to the meaning of. Which also makes the visit a bit terrifying too, knowing that all the other commenters probably do.

  28. Sleepyhead says:

    Couple of words missing there, shadowlands

    “… all the other commenters probably do not either.”

  29. irishgirl says:

    Enjoy your time at the conference, Father Z!

    I’m not much of a brain canon law-wise (I’m just a dumb single laywoman).

  30. AnAmericanMother says:

    irishgirl,

    Welcome to the club. I think being a civil lawyer completely unfits me for even thinking about canon law. Like trying to learn Dutch when you already speak German, what you think you know winds up just confusing you more.

  31. Eric says:

    I’m sure the La Crosse PD has several officers working overtime trying to contain the after hours partying.

  32. C. says:

    @robtbrown: I’m not asking for theory, I’m asking for a document.

    Anything really, allowing the use of the 1962 Missal (as opposed to the 1965, or 1968), anywhere on earth, issued before 1984.

    I notice that Fr. Thompson hasn’t responded, so I will go on assuming that no such document may exist.

  33. Titus says:

    You should say hello to Fr. John Coughlin, OFM, from Notre Dame Law. He’s a smart one.

  34. Titus: I was super impressed by Fr. Coughlin! ND is happy in him as a faculty member.

  35. Jordanes says:

    C. said: I notice that Fr. Thompson hasn’t responded, so I will go on assuming that no such document may exist.

    So you’ve never heard of the Agathie Christie indult?

  36. Jordanes says:

    “Agatha.” Duh.

  37. C. says:

    The Agatha Christie Indult was for the 1967 Missal:

    “The edition of the Missal to be used on these occasions should be that published again by the Decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites (27 January 1965), and with the modifications indicated in the Instructio altera (4 May 1967).”

    — Annibale Bugnini, Secretary, Sacra Congregatio pro Culto Divino, 5 November 1971

  38. Andy F. says:

    What makes it the “Agatha Christie” indult? Just curious.

  39. robtbrown says:

    @robtbrown: I’m not asking for theory, I’m asking for a document.

    I explicitly said it wasn’t a matter of theory but rather of practice.

    Anything really, allowing the use of the 1962 Missal (as opposed to the 1965, or 1968), anywhere on earth, issued before 1984.

    I notice that Fr. Thompson hasn’t responded, so I will go on assuming that no such document may exist.
    Comment by C.

    You don’t seem to understand what happened.

    1. There is no document saying that the 1962 Missal is abrogated (i.e., abolished). If there is, I invite you to reference it.

    2. There is, however, the Apostolic Constitution by which the 1970 Missal is promulgated. In said document Paul VI said that he wanted the new missal used, with certain few exceptions.

    Basically, it was: Yes, you can use the 1962 Missal, but, no, you won’t.

    3. By such an approach Paul VI circumvented the juridical problem of contradicting a predecessor (Pius V). A similar approach was used in Ministeria Quaedam. Later, JPII did almost the same thing with capital punishment.

    4. Of course, such a tactic creates chaos by giving bishops and religious superiors carte blanche.

  40. robtbrown says:

    What makes it the Agatha Christie indult?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agatha_Christie_indult

  41. Henry Edwards says:

    I notice that Fr. Thompson hasn’t responded, so I will go on assuming that no such document may exist.
    Comment by C.

    Curious approach. When something has existed for hundreds of years, seems like the burden of proof would be to show that it has been abrogated, not that it has not been abrogated. (You continue to see it, you naturally assume it continues to exist.)

    Aside from the fact — allegedly well-known among those who knew him well — that Pope Paul VI himself continued to celebrate the TLM privately until his death. (As reportedly did numerous others, such as Padre Pio and Jose Escriva.) If he had abrogated it, surely he would have remembered this fact.

    And aside from the fact that the SSPX (among others) continued to celebrate the TLM without sanctions (so far as I know) until the late 1980s — and even then, their sanctions did not appear to involve the TLM itself.

    And (for canon lawyers) the question whether the word “abrogate” has a meaning under which any valid rite can be abrogated — as opposed to the different and separate question of prohibiting its continued use in practice.

  42. dans0622 says:

    Mr. Edwards,
    I don’t think “C” is trying to prove abrogation but looking for “a paper trail” regarding the permissions/indults which were given in regard to the use of the 1962 Missal. I could be mistaken.

    C: There was no 1965/1967 Missal. The 1962 Missal was slightly modified by means of those 65/67 documents. That is how I understand it, anyway. I have no idea if those persons/groups who had permission to use the 1962 Missal ever observed these later modifications or not.

    Dan

  43. C. says:

    Dan, see the citation in my last post, where the Sacred Congregation of Rites refers to a 1965 Missal. It would seem that this separate permission is still valid and the bishops of England and Wales may grant the right to use the 1967 Missal (Tridentine Mass, heavily modified, in English or Latin) occasionally under the conditions of that Indult. That means there exists another Form of the Roman Rite, BTW.

    As far as permission for the 1962 Missal, Inter Oecumenici (1964) seems to command obedience and grants no permission for prior use. I don’t know of any documentary evidence that anyone was given explicit permission to say Mass according to the 1962 Missal from 1964 until 1984. (I’m not a scholar, and so I am asking the good people of the Internet to point me to any such documentation.)

    But “never abrogated” does not appear to mean that there never was a time when nobody had received actual permission. It must mean something else. The Agatha Christie Indult and “never abrogated” seem to be separate topics which should not be conflated.

  44. dans0622 says:

    C.,

    Yes, I saw the citation. I have seen different people say different things about the “1965 Roman Missal.” Some say it is not really a new edition of the Roman Missal, others seem to think it is. I don’t think it qualifies as a “new edition” but that is my unlearned opinion. The 1967 document is not what I consider to be a new edition of the Roman Missal, either. It’s only a couple of pages long and doesn’t make a lot of alterations. The 1965 changes were more substantial, but still nothing like the 1970 Missal, as far as changes from the 1962 edition. Of course, I am much too young to have any personal experience of any of this…

    Anyway, this is an interesting question. I know that a canon law student in Ottawa is working on his doctoral dissertation with the topic being Summorum pontificum. I’m sure it will address this “never abrogated” question in some detail.

    Dan

  45. robtbrown says:

    As far as permission for the 1962 Missal, Inter Oecumenici (1964) seems to command obedience and grants no permission for prior use. I don’t know of any documentary evidence that anyone was given explicit permission to say Mass according to the 1962 Missal from 1964 until 1984.

    That IO or any other document seems to command obedience, etc., to use the 1970 Missal does not constitute abrogation of the 1962 Missal.

    But “never abrogated” does not appear to mean that there never was a time when nobody had received actual permission. It must mean something else. The Agatha Christie Indult and “never abrogated” seem to be separate topics which should not be conflated.
    Comment by C.

    “Abrogate” is a juridical term that in this matter refers to the abolishment of the Missal. I am not aware of any document that does that.

    The situation for the past 40 years, however, has been that the 1962 Missal was never abolished, but pressure was put on priests not to use it.

    IMHO, the important event was the creation of the Ecclesia Dei Commission, which sanctioned groups that only wanted to use that Missal. That gave options to priests whose bishops didn’t want them to use the 1962 Missal.

    I know of a priest who went to his bishop, saying he wanted to have a weekly mass using the old missal. The bishop gave him the run around in his best episcopese: I love the beauty of the old mass and Latin . . . but now is not the time for it . . . blah, blah, blah.

    The priest then joined the FSSP.

    Consequently, bishops, most of whom are already faced with a shortage of priests, face the prospect of them leaving to join a group that exclusively uses the 1962 Missal.

  46. robtbrown says:

    If I might make one more point: After the Council Rome all but turned liturgy over to national bishops conferences, thus the question of abrogation became irrelevant.

    Any indult meant that those conferences could not completely prohibit the use of the 1962 Missal.

  47. Henry Edwards says:

    Perhaps someone can clarify my understanding that the monasteries of Barroux and Fontgombault (of the Benedictine congregation of Solesmes) have, perhaps among others, preserved the traditional Latin liturgy from 1970 to the present, at the specific request of Pope Paul VI (presumably in writing?). I’m told that Fontgombault uses the 1962 missal, while more recently Barroux has been granted permission to incorporate some limited modifications reminiscent of the 1965 Ordo Missae.

    There’s an interesting anecdote told of a Cardinal Ratzinger visit to Fontgombault. Early the first morning, the abbot showed the Cardinal into the vault where a dozen or more of the monks were celebrating (each with a single server) their individual silent low Masses at the small individual altars lining the walls. “Now this is the real Catholic Church,” the future pope is alleged to have remarked.

  48. Jordanes says:

    C. said: The Agatha Christie Indult was for the 1967 Missal

    Yes and no. Bugnini wrote:

    Considering the pastoral needs referred to by Your Eminence, it is permitted to the local Ordinaries of England and Wales to grant that certain groups of the faithful may on special occasions be allowed to participate in the Mass celebrated according to the Rites and texts of the former Roman Missal. The edition of the Missal to be used on these occasions should be that published again by the Decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites (27 January 1965), and with the modifications indicated in the Instructio altera (4 May 1967).

    Notice, he first refers to “the former Roman Missal,” and then he goes on to say that they “should” use the 1965 and 1967 modifications. He does not say that they MUST use those modifications. That is why so many the English priests who took advantage of the Agatha Christie indult didn’t bother using the modifications, but simply used the 1962 Missal — that is, the former Roman Missal.

    But “never abrogated” does not appear to mean that there never was a time when nobody had received actual permission. It must mean something else.

    If you think permission to use the 1962 Missal does not constitute evidence that the 1962 Missal was never abrogated, why are you demanding evidence that permission was granted to use the 1962 Missal?

    The Agatha Christie Indult and “never abrogated” seem to be separate topics which should not be conflated.

    No, they’re not, because as Dan mentioned, the 1965 and 1967 modifications to the 1962 Missal were not formal, stand-alone editions of the Roman Missal the way the 1962 Missal was. That’s why, when the Pope granted the Agatha Christie indult through Bugnini, Bugnini said merely that the 65/67 modifications “should” be used, not “are to be used” or “must be used.”

  49. C. says:

    That IO or any other document seems to command obedience, etc., to use the 1970 Missal

    No, it commands obedience to itself.

    does not constitute abrogation of the 1962 Missal

    What would constitute abrogation of a duly-approved and indefectible liturgy of the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church? Do you have an example of such an act?

  50. C. says:

    If you think permission to use the 1962 Missal does not constitute evidence that the 1962 Missal was never abrogated

    Continuous permission would in fact constitute that evidence. But if there was no continuous permission, then the Holy Father had some other reason for saying “never abrogated”.

    Even if you can prove that both 1962 and 1967 were options under the English Indult (and I appreciate your efforts in that regard), we still have the period of time from 1964-1970 during which it appears that permission did not exist.

  51. robtbrown says:

    Perhaps someone can clarify my understanding that the monasteries of Barroux and Fontgombault (of the Benedictine congregation of Solesmes) have, perhaps among others, preserved the traditional Latin liturgy from 1970 to the present, at the specific request of Pope Paul VI (presumably in writing?). I’m told that Fontgombault uses the 1962 missal, while more recently Barroux has been granted permission to incorporate some limited modifications reminiscent of the 1965 Ordo Missae.
    Comment by Henry Edwards

    Fontgombault dropped the 1962 Missal in the mid 70’s when the French bishops prohibited it. There were still monks using it for private masses, but those masses were said on altars where the laity could not assist. With the indult they restored use of the old mass.

    BTW, the abbot thought that even with the prohibition by the bishops, they still had the right to say it.

    Le Barroux is a different case. It was founded after the prohibition and was aligned with the Lefebvrists until the episcopal consecrations.

  52. robtbrown says:

    That IO or any other document seems to command obedience, etc., to use the 1970 Missal

    No, it commands obedience to itself.

    You contradicted your previous claim.

    does not constitute abrogation of the 1962 Missal

    What would constitute abrogation of a duly-approved and indefectible liturgy of the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church? Do you have an example of such an act?
    Coment by C.

    You’re saying a document needs to be produced to demonstrate that something did not happen. That makes no sense.

  53. robtbrown says:

    If you think permission to use the 1962 Missal does not constitute evidence that the 1962 Missal was never abrogated

    Continuous permission would in fact constitute that evidence. But if there was no continuous permission, then the Holy Father had some other reason for saying “never abrogated”.

    Permission by the Holy See and permission by the bishops’ conferences are not the same thing.

    Even if you can prove that both 1962 and 1967 were options under the English Indult (and I appreciate your efforts in that regard), we still have the period of time from 1964-1970 during which it appears that permission did not exist.
    Comment by C.

    Once again: It is one thing to say that a Missal can never be used, another to say that most priests should not use it.

  54. C. says:

    @robtbrown:

    Here’s the deal. The Holy Father wrote the wonderful phrase “never abrogated” in Summorum Pontificum and a whole host of people have been explaining its meaning ever since. Unfortunately they give different explanations.

    One side, which I would call “narrow positivist”, claims that there was always an Indult somewhere for the 1962 Missal. I believe that this is demonstrably false, so I am challenging for those Indults. If they existed, fine, but if not, then once this school is out of the way, we can focus on the others.

    Another side, which I would call “traditionalist” for lack of a better name, claims that the 1962 Missal could never be abrogated, perhaps because of Quo Primum, or perhaps because indefectible liturgy of its nature cannot be abrogated by subsequent Popes. This is not disproved if the other theories are proved, BTW.

    Finally, in the middle ground, we have a “broader positivist” side that claims that there was happily some neglect of text in the commands being issued out of Rome by Bugnini after Vatican II, and the 1962 Missal was always therefore retained as an option, provided that you knew enough to read the text correctly, and were not otherwise forbidden for example by a legitimate superior. The problem with this argument is that there were plenty of explicit commands to replace or modify the 1962 Missal, and I really fail to see how anyone can be expected to read all those documents “correctly” and know that they didn’t have to obey them. So I am asking, for future reference at least, what sort of words of prohibition would be sufficient to abrogate liturgy? And if this is not possible, then we need to look more closely at the traditionalist school, to explain “never abrogated”.