Fr. Heilman responded to something asserted by Fr. Dwight Longenecker at Pathet… at Patheos. HERE Fr. Longenecker writes: Is the Latin Mass the Magic Bullet? The title is somewhat confused, since he clearly means the Traditional Latin Mass, in the Extraordinary Form. Latin Mass can and should also indicate the Novus Ordo as well. But I digress.
While I support those who promote the Latin Mass, I must say that I find it odd that some of them seem to think the answer to all the church’s problems is more reverence at Mass. I think this is mistaking the symptom for the disease.
The problems in the Catholic church are not due to lack of reverence at Mass. The lack of reverence at Mass is due to the problems in the church.
To which, Fr. H:
Reverent Masses are not the magic bullet, Fr. Longenecker contends. I could not disagree more. I have watched and heard from countless people who tell their stories of having had a complete conversion, once exposed to a heavenly, sacred and reverent Mass. Virtually all of them speak of being agnostic, at best, until they were exposed to the “true beauty and reverence” of the Mass as it should be offered. In that moment, they talk about a light going on inside them, and they knew (and I will paraphrase here) that they had been making their faith “no big deal,” but now they have truly recognized God in these Masses (for the first time), and now they knew this was a “very big deal.”
Be sure the read both offerings in their entirety. The brief excerpts point to the content of each but there is more to be said.
I add this.
No initiative we undertake in the Church, in any of the Church’s spheres of activity, will bear good and lasting fruit unless we revitalize our sacred liturgical worship of God. Everything starts there. Everything returns there. Revitalization of our liturgical worship is the first act of New Evangelization. It is the best means of communication and evangelization both ad intra and ad extra.
This is why we need the Extraordinary Form far and wide, often and everywhere.
Apart from the fact that the Traditional Latin Mass is in itself pleasing to God, from a practical viewpoint, its knock on effects are manifold. I have enumerated them here on many an occasion and need not recite them again.