Over at NLM there is a very useful entry, which also asks from some help from people who are competent in German.
At the German site of Vatican Radio there was an interview with the Secretary of my old haunt the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei”.
I am sure the discussion over there will be interesting, as it is going to be here. Do check it out.
My Preamble: For quite a while I grew less and less enthusiastic about the idea of a “clarificatory document” about Summorum Pontificum. I am a bit more optimistic now. Given the fact of ongoing talks with the SSPX, it is not at all likely that such a “clarificatory document” would not be quite favorable toward more traditional interpretations and aspirations. See if you can discern something of that in what follows.
My emphases and comments.
Interview with Ecclesia Dei Secretary on Three Years of Summorum Pontificum
by Gregor Kollmorgen
The German Service of Vatican Radio today carries an interview with Msgr. Guido Pozzo, the Secretary of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, on the occasion of three years of Summorum Pontificum. NLM will try to provide a full translation (if any of our readers would be willing to help, that would be greatly appreciated – email addressed can be found at the top of the left side bar). [If you can help them, please go offer your services.] In the meantime, here are a few salient points:
1. (When asked about resistence to the usus antiquior:) The old Rite of the Mass has a deep richness that needs not only to be respected, but also to be rediscovered, for the benefit of the liturgy, also as it is celebrated today. These prejudices and resistance have to be overcome by a change in the forma mentis, the disposition. A more adequate liturgical formation is needed. [And yet I am aware of a cases in which bishops are claiming that it is not permitted under Summorum Pontificum to expand the use of the 1962 Missal. I suggest a change in their forma mentis is in order. Otherwise, perhaps the “Bux Protocol” might be applied.]
2. (When asked whether interest in the usus antiquior is growing:) I would say growing. Also, because we observe that especially in the younger generations there is interest in and popularity of the old form of the Mass. And this is surprising news. [Huh? “Und das ist eine überraschende Neuigkeit.” Yep. That’s what he said. But… surprising to whom? It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone working in the PCED. It might be a surprise to a hardened liberal of the “Spirit of Vatican II” stripe. ]
3. (When asked about numbers of faithful interested in the Extraordinary Form:) It is certainly clear, too, that the value of the Extraordinary Form of the Rite has nothing to do with numbers. Both forms are equal in value and dignity. [This needs to be repeated and repeated and repeated. Opponents of Pope Benedict and Summorum Pontificum and all the Catholic faithful with legitimate liturgical aspirations that run in the traditional vein claim that “Extraordinary” is supposed to mean “rare”. Clearly that is not the case.]
4. I am of the opinion that one should offer seminarians in the seminaries the opportunity to learn the celebration in the Extraordinary Form properly – not as an obligation, but as a possibility. [I disagree.] Where possible, one could make use for the formation of the priests of those institutions which are under the jurisdiction of the Commission Ecclesia Dei and follow the traditional liturgical discipline. [I disagree with the Secretary here. I think that a priest ought to know how to offer the liturgical worship of his Church, his Rite. If there are two forms of the Roman Rite, then a seminarian ought to know both of them. Furthermore, I think that when a rector of a seminary stands in front of a bishop to declare that the deacons were suitably trained for the ministry of priests, and those seminarians were not trained in the older, Extraordinary Form, then there is a problem with the rector’s statement. And as long as I am ranting, what about 1983 CIC can. 249?]
5. In the letter to the bishops accompanying the motu proprio, Pope Benedict mentioned on the one hand the need to update the calendar of Saints, i.e. to insert the Saints proclaimed after 1962, and on the other hand that certain prefaces from the Missal of Paul VI should be incorporated in order to enrich the collection of the prefaces of the Missal of 1962. [Some of my traditional friends are against such a change. I am not. I am for it.] The Commission Ecclesia Dei has set up a study process to comply with the will of the Holy Father. Here one will soon, I think, arrive at a proposal, which will shortly be submitted to the Holy Father for approbation. [That’s news.]
6. I think we must also recognize that the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite offers a more extensive reading of Scripture than the Missal of 1962. [My very traditional friends will be pleased to read this part:] Nevertheless, an amendment of the Missal of 1962 in this regard is not easy, because one has to keep in mind the relation between the biblical readings and the antiphons or responsories of the Roman breviary for that day. It bears recalling, too, however, that under Pope Pius XII a number of additional readings for the commons of Saints has been added. Therefore, one can not rule out a possible extension for the readings of the Mass. That does not mean, however, that one may as a bishop or priest celebrant subjectively and arbitrarily change the sequence of the Lectionary or mix the two forms, so that the character of both is lost.
[And this is something that I have been repeating for many years now. ] 7. In light of these explanations (sc. in the letter to the bishops), it is clear that the Catholic faithful are urged to avoid participation in the Mass or the reception of the sacraments from a priest of the FSSPX, because they are canonically irregular. [That said, it is still possible to fulfill one’s Mass obligation at an SSPX chapel. However, if there is an alternative, I suggest strongly that you chose the alternative. Stick to that which is approved.]
WDTPRS kudos to NLM for getting on this fast. I hope they can get the whole thing done soon.