“If you want your Latin in the Mass, you can keep your Latin in the Mass. PERIOD!”

The 1983 Code of Canon Law says, first, that Mass is to be celebrated in Latin, and then, or in other approved languages.

The Council’s document on liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium, says that the Latin language is to be preserved.

Contrary to the LIE that Latin was forbidden or that special permission is required, Sacrosanctum Concilium 54 requires that pastors of souls teach their flocks to sing and respond in Latin and their mother tongue.

If you want your Latin in the Mass, you can keep your Latin in the Mass.  PERIOD!

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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11 Responses to “If you want your Latin in the Mass, you can keep your Latin in the Mass. PERIOD!”

  1. wmeyer says:

    “Contrary to the LIE that Latin was forbidden…”

    Fr. Z, I hate when you mince words. Given the clarity in both Canon law and in SC, it is all the more disturbing what has happened in the last 40+ years. Clearly, many bishops have imposed their own wishes in preference to those documents. Shepherds we need, but when a shepherd drives his flock over a cliff?

  2. Robbie says:

    Do all of the Bishops agree with this?

  3. Gratias says:

    In the praxis we could not keep our mass. Happy fiftieth anniversary, Council Vatican II.

  4. PA mom says:

    Father, this is truly inspired work!

  5. kpoterack says:

    “Do all of the Bishops agree with this?”

    Things are actually a lot better – in America at least. I remember when I joined the Latin Liturgy Association back in the 1980’s, one of the hot topics was if a diocese banned the use of Latin or not. The last time I heard any talk along these lines was in the early 1990’s when (then) Msgr. (now bishop) Poprocki, chancellor of the Archdiocese of Chicago told us at a conference that he had personally removed from the books the old (largely ignored) diocesan law against the use of Latin at Mass. He said it was illicit, contrary to the universal law of the Church.

    This was the famous “Black Sunday” law which required every Mass celebrated in the archdiocese to be entirely in English beginning the First Sunday of Advent 1967.

    As I said, while I can’t speak to every bishop (even American), most bishops are much better on this topic. Whether they like Latin or not, they won’t forbid it (which they really can’t) – and an increasing number like it. Especially now, Summorum Pontificum has changed the atmosphere.

  6. Sword40 says:

    I have seen several articles on this very topic lately. When I discussed them with our local pastor, I just got the “goldfish in the bowl” look in return.

  7. Massachusetts Catholic says:

    Sadly, canon law does not seem to be in effect in the archdiocese of Boston. According to an article in a local blog, Boston Catholic Insider,

    “As implementation of the new Pastoral Plan in the Boston Archdiocese progresses, complaints continue to come in about problems with the plan. The latest comes from the Latin Mass Community at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes–the only church where the Latin Mass is celebrated daily and weekly–which is currently under a threat of being disbanded by the Boston Archdiocese…”

    The blog quotes the pastor of Mary Immaculate, writing in the parish bulletin:

    “In August I received another letter from the director of the Pastoral Planning Commission, informing me that Mary Immaculate of Lourdes was to be joined in a Pastoral Collaborative with St. Bernard’s Church in West Newton, whose official name is now Corpus-Christi/St. Bernard Parish. When I asked for further clarification on how such a plan could be reconciled with the special apostolate of the traditional Latin Mass in place here, I was informed by another letter in October that, since the Latin Mass can now be said anywhere, the canonically open status of Mary Immaculate of Lourdes will be revoked and that it will be up to the future pastor of the Mary Immaculate of Lourdes—Corpus-Christi/St. Bernard collaborative to decide whether or not to continue offering it. I then wrote another letter as a response-to-their-response. This letter went unacknowledged. After a month, I followed up with an e-mail inquiry. The reply I received was that the final decision had been made, the matter was closed, and there would be no further discussion with me.”

    There is more at the blog post here: http://bostoncatholicinsider.wordpress.com/2013/11/25/boston-latin-mass-community-under-threat-by-archdiocese/

    As you can imagine, the comments are spirited.

  8. akp1 says:

    The beauty of Latin in the Mass was obvious to me when I visited Estonia recently. The Mass was NO and in Estonian but most of the peoples parts were sung in Latin (‘Missa de Angelis’) so I was fully participating not only in prayer but in the vocal prayers too. It is so sad and distracting when I’m on holiday and Mass is said in a mixture of (e.g.) Spanish, German and English to cater for the various groups present. I always try to ask at the end, ‘why not use Latin, the official language of the Church, which would unify us?’…and the answer is usually…’because no one knows it any more.’ (well some of us do).

  9. keithp says:

    “If you want your Latin in the Mass, you can keep your Latin in the Mass. PERIOD!”

    What about the Franciscans of the Immaculate? [I give up. What about them?]

  10. mburduck says:

    LOL! You must be a Groucho Marx fan, Father!

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