Vatican Radio: Card. Bertone on Summorum Pontificum

Check this out at the site of Vatican Radio

(03 Jan 08 -RV) Emer McCarthy reports on Vatican Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone’s statements to a prominent Italian periodical [Famiglia Cristiana] regarding an Instruction that will clarify certain questions that have arisen regarding the Holy Father’s Motu Proprio, Summorum pontificum

There are some other issues as well.


I think the recent AP article is in part a follow up on this Vatican Radio piece.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. EDG says:

    I keep reading that there are two focuses, the first being bishops who are ignoring the MP, and the second being “people” who are saying that this means they don’t have to bother with the NO anymore and can go directly to the classical Latin Mass. The only problem is that, aside from a confusing Italian report about some parishioners and priests in a village somewhere who seemed to want to dump the NO and go back to the Tridentine Rite (although the article was really too confusing to tell if this was actually what they wanted to do), I haven’t seen any reports of people who are insisting that it is no longer necessary to have the NO in their parishes. Are there such people? Or is this just a sop being thrown to the hounds of VatII? Does anybody know?

  2. TNCath says:

    I don’t know so much about parishioners wanting to dump the Novus Ordo, but I do know that there are many out there that, while happy to see the Extraordinary Form celebrated again, would be just as happy to see a better celebration of the Novus Ordo in their parishes and dioceses, much in the same way the Holy Father is trying to do as evidenced by the appointment of Msgr. Guido Marini as papal master of ceremonies. Msgr. Marini, Msgr. Schuler, and others over the years have shown us that the Novus Ordo CAN be done beautifully. Once again, it is the hope of the Holy Father that the celebration of the Extraordinary Form will have a positive effect on the celebration of the Novus Ordo. If there are indeed people out there who are insisting on the exclusive celebration of the Extraordinary Form, they missing the point of Summorum Pontificum and, I daresay, the definition of the word “extraordinary.”

  3. danphunter1 says:

    I am one of those men who are calling for a complete return to th the Tridentine Mass, in fact the parish that I assist at has just about completely done that.
    Of the 5 weekday mass’s all 5 are the Missal of 1962.
    The only Novus Ordo Mass’s are the Saturday anticipated Mass and one English Novus Ordo Sunday Mass and one Spanish Sunday NO.
    The other Sunday Mass is the Tridentine Mass.
    So there are six Tridentine Mass’s per week and two Novus Ordo Mass’s.
    Let us pray that this inevitable changeover to the magnificent Tridentine Mass will take place very soon.
    Deo Gratias.

  4. John says:

    “Let us pray that this inevitable changeover to the magnificent Tridentine Mass will take place very soon.”

    I am, and although I acknowledge that there are priests who try to do the Novus Ordo reverently, their efforts ultimately won’t provide the desired “reform of the reform.”

    The Novus Ordo does not correspond to the liturgy constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium, and that is that.

  5. Different says:

    Since we’re voting, I vote for the Novus Ordo and TLM remaining each complementing the other and both developing organically. Now, maybe a TLM translated in the vernacular with an audible canon…I could go for that.

  6. Timothy James says:

    I share your sentiments, in fact I have spoken to many people who feel the same way, who desire a proper and reverent Ordinary Form of the Mass. Unfortunately you aren’t going to find much support here. Most commenters on this blog and most other traditional blogs are ready to pounce on anyone who dares to mention a desire for the Ordinary Form.

  7. Brendan says:

    >>Different: Now, maybe a TLM translated in the vernacular with an audible canon…I could go for that.>>

    The Orthodox are doing just that via the Western Rite:

  8. BK says:

    Jeff Miller at Curt Jester has the real scoop on this impending document:

  9. EDG says:

    TNCath and John:

    For a long time, I thought it would be possible to improve the NO – that is, retranslate it (the English version, at least), get better music, etc. But a couple of months ago, our vindictive NO choir director (along with our vindictive pastor) forbade any music at the daily masses and early Sunday masses because too much Latin and chant were being done by the people who sang or played at those masses. The choir director did not regard those masses as part of his job description, btw, until people innocently started commenting on how beautiful they were (thinking he was responsible for the music, which he was not). At that point, he and the liturgist decided to forbid any music at all.

    At first I thought that would be fine. But then I realized why the NO has to have music, sound, lights, anything – it’s an incredibly dull, unworshipful and, most of all, wordy thing. The classical rite has lots of words, but they all mean something. The NO is wordy to the point of distraction, but it is generally about as meaningful as an office memo at a big corporation. And no matter how “reverently” you say it, it’s not going to be anything other than what it is.

    I realized then (and this was literally only a couple of months ago) that there is no saving the NO. It’s not the same as the classical rite on any level and it’s got to go.

    That said, I don’t think most people have been clamoring for it to go, if only because they don’t know the old rite or have been poorly introduced to it, either by sloppy celebration when they were kids or by hostile nitpickers in traditionalist parishes. So I am still puzzled by the comments about people wanting only the classical rite, unless, of course, there’s some kind of groundswell out there we’re not hearing about…

  10. TNCath says:


    ANY Mass without music (a simple Novus Ordo Mass or Extraordinary Form Low Mass) falls short of the ideal as far as liturgy is concerned. The Mass, ideally, is meant to be sung. The removal of music at your Masses by your pastor and choir director is unfortunate. It says a lot about how your pastor views the Mass, perhaps, but I really don’t think it accurately reflects the Novus Ordo. I’m not exactly sure what “the classical rite has lots of words, but they all mean something” means, either. Please explain. Does this mean that there are words in the Novus Ordo that don’t mean anything? Even as badly translated as the Novus Ordo is, I still find meaning to the words. Now individual hymns sung at the Novus Ordo are inane and poor in quality, but the overall text of the Mass itself (in the original Latin of course) is certainly not heretical!

    As for John’s comment that “Novus Ordo does not correspond to the liturgy constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium, and that is that,” I’d like to know exactly in what way does it not correspond?

  11. Jack Peter Gunning says:


    You asked: “As for John’s comment that “Novus Ordo does not correspond to the liturgy constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium, and that is that,” I’d like to know exactly in what way does it not correspond?”

    The best way to find the answer to this question is to look at the primary sources: Sacrosanctum Concilium, a Roman Missal in use in 1962, and the Roman Missal published in 1969. I believe that the answer will become obvious to you very easily.

    As an example, the defining characteristic [what makes the Rite the Rite] of the Roman Rite has always been The Canon, three Popes have claimed St. Peter used a version of it, no where in Sacrosanctum Concilium is there a call for it to be replaced of supplemented. Yet it was.

    I am loathe to recommend a secondary source, perhaps someone else will step in for you.

    Jack Peter Gunning

  12. Habemus Papam says:

    The 1965 Missal met the demands of Sacrosanctam Concilium. This is the Mass reformed according to Vatican II. Leave the 1962 Missal alone. You got what you wanted in 1965. Basta!

  13. Neal says:

    Jack Peter Gunning,

    One possible secondary source is Monsignor Klaus Gamber’s “The Reform of the Roman Liturgy”. Chapter 5 questions whether the NOM was necessary to implement the Council’s decisions and discusses some of its liturgical and theological novelties. The book has Cardinal Ratzinger’s stamp of approval (but then so does the NOM, so go figure).


  14. Habemus Papam says:

    pp46-48 Chap.5 Reform of the Ordo Missae;The Reform Of The Roman Liturgy.

    As already discussed, the Ordo Missae of 1965, published shortly after the Council’s conclusion, clearly indicates that at least at the ouset, a fundamental change of the traditional Mass had neither been contemplated nor intended. In its introduction, it states explicitly that the directives of the Liturgy Commission had been given due consideration and implemented by the new Ordo of the Mass. The traditional rite had been left intact, with the exception of a few, minor adjustments and edits-for example, by doing away with Psalm 42 as part of the Entrance and Preparatory Prayers and by dropping the Last Gospel.
    In saying this, we must add that the cited Instructio ad exsequendam Constitutionem de s. Liturgia of September 26, 1964, did make mention of a continuing librorum liturgicorum instauratio (revision of the liturgical books);see Article 3. Any objective theologian familiar with the way the Roman Church operates would have taken this statement to mean only a limited edit, an enrichment of existing liturgical texts-certainly not yet another revision of the rite of Mass. Otherwise , would the Intoductory Decree of the Ordo Missae of 1965 have directed “it is to be published in the new editions of the Missale Romanum” (in novis Missali romani editionibus assumeretur)?
    After all, it wouldn’t make sense to order thr printing of new missals knowing in advance that they would only be valid and in use for four years!
    The only logical conclusion we can draw from this is that the new Ordo Missae of 1965 was meant to be published as the new edition of the Missal, as directed in the Introductory Decree(Instrutio).
    Article 50 of the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy gives the instruction that in the newly edited version of the riteof Mass, those “parts that with the passage of time came to be duplicated, or were added with little advantage” should be done away with. Unfortunately, this statement is very general ang vague. But we can reasonably assume that what the majority of the Council Fathers had in mind were items like the Confiteor being recited twice(once during the entrance prayers and again prior to the distribution of Communion to the faithful), some of the priest’s private prayers, and the Last Gospel.
    The Article’s text continues, “Other parts that suffered loss through accidents of history are to be restored to the vigor thhey had in the days of the holy Fathers, as may seem useful or necessary.” What this passage probably referred to is, first of all, the Prayer of the Faithful (General Intercessions) before the Offertory Prayer; secondly, the use of a wider selection of Prefaces. We will discuss this later in more detail. Nobody can object to changes of this kind; they would have served not to dertroy but to invigorate the traditional rite, just as in centuries past the liturgy had gone through many organic developments.

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