There is an interesting bit of news from the UK via Telegraph.co.uk.
My emphases and comments.
Fifty priests will be learning how to say the traditional Latin Mass at a conference at Merton College, Oxford, later this month. That’s 10 more than the organisers, the Latin Mass Society, had originally catered for. And, I should think, 50 more than the Bishops of England and Wales were hoping for.
Also, here’s some really bad news for the trendy old prelates: the average age of the priests at the conference is about 20 years younger than that of the clergy in general. [This is exactly what I have been talking about for the last few weeks. Younger clergy, without the 60’s-80’s baggage of their older brethren, are interested in the older form of Mass. When they learn it, they will change the way they celebrate the Novus Ordo. Thus, the older form of Mass will exert a gravitational pull on the newer form.]
The event is a response to Pope Benedict’s wonderful apostolic letter liberating the ancient form of Mass; priests can now say it whenever they want, without having to go biretta in hand to their bishop. But the multiple crossings and genuflections of the traditional Mass are difficult to master; [well… not that hard. Think about it. Back in the day, those priests who learned to say Mass weren’t all rocket scientists, were they?] hence the need for this initiative.
The Archbishop of Birmingham, Vincent Nichols, will open the conference by celebrating a Latin Mass on August 28. Good for him. But WHY is he insisting on using the 1970 Missal, when the whole point of the conference is to deepen priests’ understanding of the ancient liturgy, codified in the 1962 Missal? It just seems rude. Can’t he change his mind? [This is a little odd. I suspect he doesn’t know the older form … yet.]
Fortunately, the Bishop of Tulsa, Oklahoma, is coming to the conference and, quite properly, closing proceedings with Mass according to the “extraordinary form” of the Roman Rite, as Catholics now know the 1962 missal. (The phrase “Tridentine Rite” was used until recently.)
I think the nylon chasuble-wearing bishops of England and Wales are still “in denial”, as they say, about the Pope’s apostolic letter. They should snap out of it.
The liberation of the ancient liturgy – which Benedict XVI made quite clear was a response to its popularity among young people – creates a pastoral need for priests who can celebrate it in every diocese.
Yet, until now, the two international priestly bodies who specialise in the old liturgy – the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter and the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest – have been discouraged, shall we say, from establishing a home in the English Church. The bishops usually fall over themselves to welcome immigrants to these shores – but not if they are priests commissioned by the Pope to celebrate the traditional Mass. Whatever happened to “celebrating diversity”?