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Fr. Z is officially a hybrid of Gandalf and Obi-Wan XD
Rev. John Zuhlsdorf, a scrappy blogger popular with the Catholic right.
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[T]he even more mainline Catholic Fr. Z. blog.
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The Cardinal would do well to embrace the motto of the new attack submarine USS California SSN-781.
“SILENTIUM EST AUREUM”
nice picture at the link below
Blödsinn? Sheesh, that’s practically hate speech.
Don’t they get all over people now for calling somebody or something “retarded”?
Loved the picture – thanks for the chuckle! Certainly that bear would be a good mascot.
I’ll tell you what’s nonsense. Dragging kids into EF drama like this. I feel bad for kids who solely attend the EF, receive their first three sacraments in the EF, but must be Confirmed in the NO because of the higher-ups. It’s not fair to them; they’re just kids.
Reading these types of articles makes me thankful our bishop is so awesome and actually celebrates Confirmation in the EF.
Don’t they get all over people now for calling somebody or something “retarded”? No, not if it was true. I know I have days when I feel that way…
Word has it that Cardinal Lehmann has submitted his resignation to the Holy Father and it has not been accepted. Is this true?
I do know that the Pope has been unusually generous in extending the tenure of his fellow bishops past age 75 in Germany – his own successor in Munich, Cardinal Wetter, was allowed to remain even past age 80.
At any rate, even if Lehmann retires immediately, the Pope’s control over appointment of his successor is limited by the Holy See’s concordat with Germany – he gets to select the terna, but the cathedral chapter in Mainz has the right to elect the new archbishop from that list.
We can only hope and pray that his successor, whoever he is, is more pastoral – certainly not so selective in his pastoral sensitivities – than the incumbent.
Hey, at least his Eminence speaks plainly. I have read about many Bishops (and Vicars General) that obviously hate the more ancient rite but hide their insults in more syrupy and insidious language. His dissent is public and on-record. That is much easier to deal with than underhandedness.
In my diocese the bishop–no friend to the more ancient rite and never a supporter of traditional expressions of catechism and education–came to our local EF community, gave the confirmations according to the extraordinary form, and even assisted at Mass in choir. So, I guess we’re very blessed, and it could always be much worse.
Well, bloed means stupid, and it’s rather impolite. Lately Card. Lehman defended a bunch of Catholic polititians, who called for female diacons and married”viri probati” to be ordained priests. We were told, it’s not fair to criticize them, because they were polititians with a lot of merits. Considering this and his general welcoming attitude towards any form of criticism of Catholic traditions and teaching it is a very harsh statement of Cardinal Complaisance. Hard to understand why he is so sectarian here. He just could say, that he’d prefer not to do it personally because it would contradict his personal opinion, but the desire of his sheeps would be catered for. Well, perhaps I’m to young to understand all the fuss. There are to forms of the same rite, what’s so bad about it?
I read another article which said that defections from the Church in Germany are at an all time high. It quoted people demanding all the usual “liberal” stuff and mostly blamed the situation on the current scandals. I wonder, though, if it might not be more the attitudes of the bishops in Germany that lay the groundwork for this disaffection. If the bishop doesn’t think much of the Church’s teaching, why should anyone else?
I attended confirmation in the EF last night at Immaculate Conception Church in Omaha, performed by His Excellency, Abp. George Lucas. It was most elevating. I thank His Excellency for being so open to this and so capable a shepherd. Is he, too, foolish? I think not!
I don’t feel that Blödsinn is more hard than Unsinn or Unfug; in fact the strongest of all these would be, by a slight degree, Nonsens. It’s a matter of the degree of colloquiality in the language, and of personal preference. A friend can certainly interrupt a friend by “Entschuldige, das ist doch Blödsinn, was du da erzählst”, which roughly translates to “Sorry, but you’re wrong.” Also, to speak of something someone said as stupidity doesn’t mean calling the said person stupid himself.
However, to speak of such things as nonsense is itself harsh enough a statement; in this @outis is right.
What the Cardinal however did say literally is that he can’t imagine an understandable reason for the request. What he probably meant (since I’m sure he at least conceives the request) was probably no more than: They aren’t justified in requesting it.
@Aethelstan: The Holy See is perfectly free to nominate to the terna whoever it likes, provided he’s German and has a M. A. in Theology’s equivalent from a German or Papal university and they’re three different persons. That shouldn’t be a major problem.
However, coming to think of it, the governments of I think both (?) Rhineland-Palatinate and Hessen could intervene to speak of “mental reservations of political but not party-political nature” which basically would exclude a candidate.
Too bad he didn’t provide his thought process in coming to this conclusion about other Christians on the way. I think what he is saying is that they are “Holy Fools” or “Jesus Freaks”, intended as a deep compliment. It’s like his parting advice, “You are all a bunch of fools, and, have a nice life. I’m getting out of here pretty soon.” Bless him.
His Eminence allows the EF to be said in his Archdiocese, and yet won’t do Confirmation in the Old Rite? That’s not good. And it wasn’t nice of him to use the word that he said. (I’m half-German on my mother’s side)
pyrosapien-hey, what a cool picture of the USS California’s coat of arms! That ‘ol grizzly bar’ looks pretty mean! And I like the motto: ‘Silence Is Golden’! Perfect! For ‘The Golden State’, natch!
On 16 May His Eminence hit the milestone of 75 years, the age at which bishops who are ordinaries of dioceses must submit their resignations.
Maybe that’s what he meant when he said he wouldn’t do Confirmations according to the E.F.
Blödsinn is very rude in this context, much worse than “nonsense.” Friends may say “Blödsinn!” to each other, but here parishioners are called complete idiots.
AD PAUCOS ANNOS
Hey was that the bishop of Mainz that got devoured by rats?
“I’ll tell you what’s nonsense. Dragging kids into EF drama like this. I feel bad for kids who solely attend the EF, receive their first three sacraments in the EF, but must be Confirmed in the NO because of the higher-ups. It’s not fair to them; they’re just kids.”
I know. You’re right. That is nonsense. Parents ought to have better sense than to raise their children to fear and avoid the ordinary form of Mass the way they, themselves, do. Because what happens when the stark reality of the prevalence of that form of Mass hits these poor kids in the case of a wedding, or a funeral…or their own Confirmations? They’ve been taught to believe that the “TLM” is the true Mass, so what’s this other thing that’s been around for 40 years now that they’ve never seen?
Parents: live in abject fear of the Missal of Pope Paul VI if you must, but please don’t force your children to share your irrational fears! It is not fair to them!
Well, the Germans (if not the Austrians) are contracepting and aborting themselves into oblivion. I’ve heard it said that there probably won’t even *be* any Germans in a century or so. Those Catholics who remain in what will probably be just another part of the umma will be martyrs in both senses of the word. And something tells me that at that point, the happy-clappy Mass of the protestantizers just.won’t.do.
“And something tells me that at that point, the happy-clappy Mass of the protestantizers just.won’t.do.” I believe this statement is inaccurate and inappropriate.
What caused the moral weakness of so many Catholics, in the age range of 70 to 85 today, to happily and mindlessly and abjectly surrender to the obvious anti-Catholic Bug-nini revolution that took place after Vatican II? The question and observation applies to both clergy and laity alike…but especially to the laity who did not have the politics of “professional advancement” as a primary reason for support as so many of the clergy did. Had most of the laity who loved the Church simply walked away, as tens to hundreds of millions of conscientious Catholics did in short order worldwide, the Bug-nini teratoma could have been obliterated before it metastasized…bishops are nothing if not politicians! Instead, today one has typically the masquerade of a pentacostal-style new-church filled with mushroom-like laity and their priest or deacon on his throne at center stage where the altar should be, all singing kindergarten hymns while holding hands across aisles, all filled with uninformed praise for thoroughly discredited post-Vatican II “liturgy”. There is nothing Catholic in that picture!
One can not blame those who were raised in the post-Vatican II church. There are many of such who are enthusiastic for the relaxed and non-exacting nature of the new-church, and few will have the motivation and intellectual curiosity to learn millennia-old traditions of the Church to which they were never exposed, and which require unaccustomed discipline.
When post-Vatican II changes first infected my parish in 1965, it was a profound disappointment to me that clergy and laity then in their 30s and 40s failed to present resistance that was properly expected, had they cared about the Church and weren’t just looking for a happy-feel-good social club.
When the Bug-nini cancer has finally been completely excised, then studied for the pathology it represents to prevent recurrence, perhaps there can again after a half-century be a real unified Catholic Church. Lehmann, grimmiger tilger…schedlicher echter…(usw), you’re due in surgery stat!
Re: USS California. I was a little shocked when I first saw the logo. It wasn’t that long ago, historically, that the bear would’ve been seen as the symbol of the enemy, the former Soviet Union!
On 16 May His Eminence hit the milestone of 75 years, the age at which bishops who are ordinaries of dioceses must submit their resignations.”
Good. Let him resign.
Card Lehmann was Karl Rahner’s research assistant in the mid 60’s–both shared an enthusiasm for the use of Heidegger to obfuscate doctrine.
I have been told that he was the principal author of Rahner’s Foundations of Christian Faith, which set the world record for use of the phrase “man in the face of the absolute transcendent”. IMHO, reading the book could be described: Man in the Face of Absolute Boredom.
EWTN Rocks: “Inaccurate”? In what sense, especially since I was speculating? I could be wrong, or… “Inappropriate”: give me a break.
I know. You’re right. That is nonsense. Parents ought to have better sense than to raise their children to fear and avoid the ordinary form of Mass the way they, themselves, do. Because what happens when the stark reality of the prevalence of that form of Mass hits these poor kids in the case of a wedding, or a funeral…or their own Confirmations?
I don’t think blaming the parents is helpful, even if what you posted is not a straw man. My kids have attended Novus ordo Masses for weddings, funerals, First Communions, etc. but for their own confirmations I would prefer a bit less of a hootenanny and I think they would too.
“Bloed” means “stupid”. “Sinn” means “reason”, “sense”, “thinking”.
“Schwachsinn” (schwach = weak) means something like “nonsense”, though I would translate “nonsense” with the more literal “Unsinn”.
Bloedsinn directly means something like “idiocy”, “moronic thinking”.
Whilst it is true that “Bloedsinn” is used in colloquial terms to say “humbug”, “nonsense”, here Cardinal Lehmann is talking to a newspaper. I do not think that his choice of words is casual, he clearly wanted to be offensive and not use a word like “Unsinn”.
Please note that German is – like the Germans themselves – a rather precise language, complex and with vast possibilities of nuance. Whilst people are not always consciously aware of the words they are choosing, the difference between, say, “Unsinn” and “Bloedsinn” is instinctively clear to everyone.
No, if you take “you’re requesting complete nonsense” (which for all in the world is harsh enough to begin with) and “you’re complete idiots” as two different matters, Blödsinn says only the first of both. (“Schwachsinn”, for example, would also do the latter, even if this sounds weird.)
Can someone tell me what the EF of confirmation confers upon the recipient that OF does not?
And the reason why a “weak sense” is better than a “stupid sense” is probably that the first of both, and only, is the name of mental illness. And mental illness is somewhat the No. 1 fount of insult in Germany.
@Mundabor, you may be right to the question why he didn’t say “Unsinn”, but if argued from the other end: if he had wanted to offend in language as well and not only in content of speech, he could have been lots and lots more offensive.
“Parents ought to have better sense than to raise their children to fear and avoid the ordinary form of Mass the way they, themselves, do. Because what happens when the stark reality of the prevalence of that form of Mass hits these poor kids in the case of a wedding, or a funeral…or their own Confirmations? They’ve been taught to believe that the “TLM” is the true Mass, so what’s this other thing that’s been around for 40 years now that they’ve never seen? Parents: live in abject fear of the Missal of Pope Paul VI if you must, but please don’t force your children to share your irrational fears! It is not fair to them!”
Excuse me, but as the father of three young children raised exclusively in the EF, I assure you that I am the best judge of the form in which they are to be raised and that it makes perfectly good sense to me. Thousands of good parents choose to raise their children in the venerable form of our ancestors. My parents lost their faith along with millions of others in the 1960s/70s thanks in large measure to the liturgy of Paul VI we have endured for 40 years. My “fear” is the result of the wisdom and observation. It is in no way “irrational”.
I will not allow my young sons to be scandalized by the feminism present in virtually all OF celebrations in the form of female readers, cantors, eucharistic ministers and most perniciously altar girls. Men have disappeared from the sanctuary and are now a minority in the pews. Each man must make the decision that is best for his family. I don’t attack those who remain in the Novus Ordo, (many good people are struggling to reform it from within), but in my judgment as a father, it isn’t right for my family.
Apart from the occasional family wedding or funeral which we explain as best we can, they have no contact with the Novus Ordo world. Each of those encounters reminds us in ample measure why we have nothing to do with it.
Imrahil, he is still a cardinal, Bloedsinn is, I think, shocking enough.
To make a comparison: in an halfway decent office you would not answer to a colleague proposal that it is “Bloedsinn”, not without risking a very serious confrontation. With “Unsinn” you would still be on a way to an open fight, but not in such an open way.
He could have used expressions like: “Ich kann es gar nicht verstehen” (“I can’t understand it at all”), which are, in fact, the usual way of saying politely that you can’t see any usefulness in what is proposed; so usual in fact, that to a cardinal they should come fully natural.
He has clearly crossed a line here, as the press echo clearly shows.
can you tell me what the OF of confirmation confers upon the recipient that the EF does not?
According to my big old ugly Brockhaus dictionary from my college days, “Blödsinn” is a somewhat outdated mental illness diagnosis — more or less the equivalent of “imbecile” on the old scale – between “idiot” and “moron” in severity.
But regardless of whether it’s a mental illness term, or whether it’s used as a term of joking abuse between friends, a cardinal has absolutely no business using such a word for public consumption, and certainly not in reference to any member of his flock.
Sounds like His Eminence is going to retire not a moment too soon.
My son was confirmed in the old rite last night in Omaha, Nebraska. I thank my archbishop for being so kind and generous.
Overheard in the Papal offices . . .
“Georg, wrap up one of the Black Forest Cuckoo clocks and send it off to Mainz with my congratulations on His Eminence’s retirement.”
Restoration 3:00 pm,
what a beautiful post!
Agree with every word, and what a blessing both of you are for your children!
can you tell me what the OF of confirmation confers upon the recipient that the EF does not?
In short, nothing. So what does it matter which form is used?
All authorized rites of the Church are equally salvific and grace-filled, and accomplish what they set out to do, as the Church cannot authorize rites that are ineffectual.
However, there are some trads who seem to think that the EF has stronger juju.
“So what does it matter which form is used?” Simply for the same reasons some folks prefer the EF Mass over the OF Mass. But you already knew that of course, Fr. Basil. :)
By the way, the dictionary definition of the word “juju” is as follows:
A style of music popular among the Yoruba in Nigeria and characterized by the use of guitars and variable-pitch drums.
This is exactly what the EF does NOT have. :)
Fr. Basil, I agree with you up to the point where you have to insult those who prefer the EF. I am not a “Trad” and our family attends Mass and Sacraments in both Forms. We have had our children confirmed in both forms and prefer the older Form. All things being equal a Baptism performed in the kitchen sink is just as valid as one performed in a Church but I daresay you wouldn’t suggest making Baptism at home a regular occurence. Like Baptism in the EF we found Confirmation in the EF to be much more edifying. I don’t hold it against someone for choosing the New Rite, why don’t you extend us the same courtesy for choosing the old?
Maybe it’s not so much about the differences in the rite, but rather the preparation leading up to the rite that led us to prefer the EF. Our children were just confirmed in the EF. By choosing the EF route, our children did not have to do crafts, make a banner, or quilt, or attend an overnight touchy-feely co-ed retreat, collect Sunday bulletins to prove that they were regular mass goers or log-in a set number of service hours. In the EF, we were not subjected to music like, “We are a pilgrim people, cha-cha-cha.” This is what would have been their experience had we chosen the local OF.
By being taught the faith by our good priests, simply and reverently, I believe our children were better disposed to receive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
Does anyone here have advice re how to obtain an EF Confirmation, if there is no chance of one’s local ordinary offering it? Contra “Centristian,” my family attends the OF at least 3/4 of the time, but I am willing to go to rather great lengths to avoid the typical OF Confirmation.
With some scheduling flexibility, I might be able to help obtain EF confirmation, but may not be able to accommodate your family attending OF 3/4 of the time. I’d have to check for logistical issues.
Does anyone here have advice re how to obtain an EF Confirmation, if there is no chance of one’s local ordinary offering it? Contra “Centristian,” my family attends the OF at least 3/4 of the time, but I am willing to go to rather great lengths to avoid the typical OF Confirmation.
MWA, I’d be happy to but don’t have the time right now. I will try and repost here tomorrow or you can click on my name and it will take you to my blog where you can leave me a message. We just went through this in our Archdiocese and had 27 confirmed in the EF 2 weeks ago.
Although, I wish I could help you obtain an OF Confirmation as I feel responsible for current issues. Perhaps adding some sort of caveat for my involvement might help, e.g. trial period
If someone were to request the EF Confirmation because of a misguided understanding that it is objectively more effective or grace-filled than an OF Confirmation, then that would be a stupid, moronic, idiotic, etc. idea. And I for one would agree with His Eminence’s strong disdain for such an attitude.
I know people who were confirmed in the EF and are apostates or heretics. I also know people confirmed in the OF who are staunch and faithful Catholics. And there are even Catholics ordained in the various rites of the East who are just as exemplary.
However, if we speak not just of the sacrament, but of the confirmation program, and the parish attitudes which surround many OF confirmation programs, there is a reason indeed to be choosey and discriminating. Some OF communities, and their confirmation programs, are ineffective to transmit the faith and to celebrate the sacrament fruitfully. One example is that it is not unheard of in some OF parishes to have people being confirmed who did not even make a good confession beforehand because they do not even understand the sacraments, their grace, and the need to receive them worthily.
Many of the EF parishes and chapels, on the other hand, are “hard core” about the Faith and from doctrine, to a devotional prayer life at home, to practicing their Faith outside the home, to diligently preparing for the confirmation ceremony, are a welcome alternative. These EF confirmation programs are more effective to prepare and celebrate a fruitful confirmation and then provide the cocoon or apostolic setting in which the Faith will continue to flourish.
God bless those parents who are wanting that much more for the spiritual well being of their children. What is “Blödsinn” is for a bishop to in any way, shape, or form, discourage these kinds of parents.
“And there are even Catholics ordained in the various rites of the East……” above should instead read “And there are even Catholics confirmed…..”
This is a typical case of the pot calling the kettle black. He asserts his own superiority in the midst of his obvious & overwhelming failure to pass on the faith on to the young of Germany, and he doesn’t even seem to comprehend that basic fact. He’d ought to be damn careful who he’s calling stupid.
when you write “there are some trads who seem to think that the EF has stronger juju” you are answering a question that hasn’t been posed. Only a sedevacantist would say that an EF confirmation confers some sacrament the OF doesn’t.
The problem is, therefore, not in them but in you. They don’t have a problem with the OF’s sacramental validity, but you have a problem with them wanting the EF.
“Many of the EF parishes and chapels, on the other hand, are “hard core” about the Faith and from doctrine, to a devotional prayer life at home, to practicing their Faith outside the home, to diligently preparing for the confirmation ceremony, are a welcome alternative.”
Our EF parish just celebrated its first in-house confirmation in its 15+ years of existence. For a few years our confirmands had to travel 2 hours, and before that they had to travel 2 states away to receive this sacrament in the EF (and this is from a bishop who allows the TLM). My son attended CCD classes all year, took a 60 question test from the BC2, and went to an all day retreat to prepare for the sacrament. It was a beautiful and moving experience for all involved, a far cry from my own confirmation in the NO which asked nothing of me except luckily my first confession. I’m convinced that the only reason my child doesn’t know more about the Catholic faith at age 12 (due to his being raised attending the TLM) than his mother is because I am the one teaching him religion every day.
God bless priests and bishops who welcome and say the TLM, those who love the Catholic Church, and those who attempt to teach their children the Faith.
It is not permitted where I am but from what I know (and obviously this is very new as it hasn’t been permitted for so long) is that for confirmandi who receive the sacrament using the EF they certainly have no illusions that they receive something more or better in terms of the sacrament itself. But having been prepared in this way, in the process of investigating what the prayers really say and mean, preparing hymns and studying in groups of their cheerful and enthusiastic peers, it is more meaningful, to them. How could we any of us begrudge that for them, to them, in the light of their lives and process of maturity, they give their assent in such a context of preparation and study?
Are parents not within their rights totally and legitimately free to consider, even say if they prefer the OF, or, if they prefer themselves Mass in the EF, are they not quite right, and to be admired, for saying, well, on the one hand, my child may go through with the required local preparation to receive in the OF which is probably slim to none as far as going through the sacrament step by step, little in the way of communal prayer, and heavy on, concerts, pizza and fun. Probably results will vary depending on Diocese as to content…And then the fact that a great number who are confirmed in the OF promptly discontinue attending Mass just as soon as they are able, parents probably stop and say, well, maybe something a little more serious is needed, something that helps them to understand that they will be making a commitment and this is not just graduation from religious education for all time…Can we really blame parents in this?
Further, in some places quite likely good parents have attempted to become involved in charitable ways to encourage a little more oomph, reverence and comprehension in the OF sacrament. Now officials and leaders could, being human, do, a number of things in response to the laity making their good and legitimate needs known: they could listen and integrate their wisdom as suggested, or, they could, reject it and give reasoning. But unfortunately often enough another way is chosen which is, not only to reject the message but ridicule, ostracize, gossip about and condemn the messenger…So possibly, parents quite ready to participate in the OF, when they observe that their shared concerns with parents who prefer the EF are mocked, then are really left, through no fault of their own, between a rock and a hard place…
Fr. Basil and others may perpetuate the same old stereotypes and judgments about the faithful in order to at all costs attempt to contain and disperse…But after all these years it rings hollow, lacks juju, and becomes essentially oft repeated propaganda with little connection to real people and their struggles. How about some compassion for these families. How about a little listening to their experience, for once.
Perhaps I have you confused with someone else, but I find you comment of ” So what does it matter which form is used?” somewhat … odd … coming from whom (I thought) was an Eastern Catholic
If one looks at the goals and hopes that these parents have for their children in asking the Church to offer the possibility of confirmation in the EF, you can find these same values reflected in various secular health recommendations based on research. Other faiths and various denominations often listen to these needs of parents in raising children and ably respond. Why is it that merely because parents who prefer to pray in one form ought to be, not just, automatically rejected but then ridiculed for their efforts in raising children in the faith?
And at the least since quite often these same parents do so much for the Church in a variety of ways, it would seem that it would be prudent and pastoral to acknowledge them with a modicum of respect.
Maybe the egregiousness of this term is regional? According to my cousin, who perhaps was exaggerating for the benefit of his American cousin, casting aspersions on someone’s mental health or competence was a legally punishable offence.
He is from Hessen, by the way
“I don’t think blaming the parents is helpful, even if what you posted is not a straw man. My kids have attended Novus ordo Masses for weddings, funerals, First Communions, etc. but for their own confirmations I would prefer a bit less of a hootenanny and I think they would too.”
When I was confirmed by a bishop who used the reformed rite of Confirmation, I experienced no “hootenanny”. It is no fairer of you to say a thing like that than it would be for me to advise parents to avoid Confirmations in the extraordinary form because of all the unbalanced right-wing nutters who typically gravitate around “Tridentine” Masses. It would be unfair to assert that all parishes that offer the “EF” are clownish because of their parishioners, just as it is to assert that all celebrations of the liturgy in the ordinary form are characterized by clownish liturgy. Celebrated under either form, a circus environment of one type or another can obtain at a Confirmation, unfortunately, when the parish itself has a circus-like environment.
When that happens, the fault is of the parish and its leadership, or perhaps of a bishop lacking in judgment, not the form of the celebration of the Sacrament. Just as there is nothing about the extraordinary form of the Sacrament of Confirmation, in and of itself, that makes some worshippers self-righteous, conspiratorial, and agenda-driven, there is likewise nothing about the ordinary form of the Sacrament of Confirmation that makes those in charge of planning the event mad liberal kooks who have lost all sense of Catholic piety and liturgical order.
I have been to Confirmations celebrated in the ordinary form, and I have been to Confirmations celebrated in the extraordinary form. If I had to judge the forms of each by those experiences, I would have to judge in favor of the ordinary form. In the celebrations of the ordinary form I have been to, the bishop preached about becoming “Catholic ladies and gentlemen” in one case, about “putting on the armor of Christ” in another, and still another about “being filled with the Holy Spirit”. You know…the typical stuff you’d expect to hear a bishop say on the occasion of a young Christian’s Confirmation.
With respect to the Confirmations I have witnessed in the extraordinary form, however, the bishop preached about how we must fortify ourselves in the Holy Ghost, because “Jewish liars” in charge of the worlds banks were plotting the advent of the reign of Antichrist; that women should not wear pants or have careers or college educations, as such things rob them of their femininity; that Freemasons are running amok in the highest levels of the Vatican; and that we may expect the “three days of darkness” any day, now.
Now, was the fact that all of that nonsense was preached from the pulpit the fault of the extraordinary form of the Sacrament? No, of course not. It was all preached because the bishops performing the Sacrament on those occasions were given to peculiar notions and unregulated speech. By the same token, however, when you see a Sacrament in the ordinary form accompanied by abuses and idiocies, it isn’t the fault of the ordinary form, itself, but of the people responsible for mis-celebrating it. Either form can be subject to an ugly environment thanks to
“Excuse me, but as the father of three young children raised exclusively in the EF, I assure you that I am the best judge of the form in which they are to be raised and that it makes perfectly good sense to me.”
Oh, I beg your pardon; I was under the erroneous impression, evidently, that it was the bishop who was the best judge of the form to use for the Sacrament of Confirmation in his own diocese, not each individual parent of a confirmand. I won’t go as far as Cardinal Lehmann goes in calling persons “idiotic” for desiring to be confirmed according to the extraordinary form of Confirmation; I think that’s uncharitable and uncalled for, particularly in light of Summorum Pontificum. But I will say, that if you can’t have it in your preferred form for some reason, there’s no cause for distress. Just have your child confirmed in the other form, which is just as vaild.
My concern is not with parents who merely prefer the extraordinary form of the liturgy and Sacraments (personally, I would prefer the same, too), but with those parents who sort of lock their children in the liturgical attic, so to speak, of an infrequently celebrated form of liturgy, so restrictively that the children can only grow up in a sort of parallel ecclesial universe apart from the rest of us. I can see that happening in your case, in fact, when you describe the rest of the world outside of your “EF”-centered experience as “the Novus Ordo world”. “…they have no contact with the Novus Ordo world,” you said. That’s a little alarming. It would be one thing to express a preference for the pre-Conciliar rites and to enjoy them whenever possible, but to create a separate pre-Conciliar “world” in which the prevalent form of Mass and the Sacraments doesn’t exist (it exists only in that other world…”the Novus Ordo world”) seems very unhealthy, if I may say so.
Go to the “EF”, sure, and even prefer it. Fine. But if the bishop deems it impossible/impractical/undesirable to offer Confirmation in the extraordinary form, it has to be remembered that the ordinary form of the celebration of the Sacrament of Confirmation is good and valid and still imparts the Sacrament of Confirmation, every bit as validly and perfectly as does the pre-Conciliar form. Don’t confuse aberrations and poor taste for the form, itself. Those aberrations and expressions of poor taste, thanks to Summorum Pontificum, may now obtain just as easily under either form, since now, any priest may celebrate any Sacrament under either form without any need for permission in advance. And so a good, devout, liturgically-sensitive bishop could celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation in the ordinary form, in Latin, with all due reverence and solemnity whereas a parish priest deputized by him to offer the Sacrament in his parish could celebrate a “folk” celebration dressed as a clown using the 1962 Missal. A form of the liturgy is not defined by the abuses it endures illegally by irresponsible celebrants and participants.
St. Ignatius, in his letter to the Smyrneans, reminds us…
“See that you all follow the bishop, even as Jesus Christ does the Father, and the presbytery as you would the apostles; and reverence the deacons, as being the institution of God. Let no man do anything connected with the Church without the bishop. Let that be deemed a proper Eucharist, which is [administered] either by the bishop, or by one to whom he has entrusted it. Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude [of the people] also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church. It is not lawful without the bishop either to baptize or to celebrate agape; but whatsoever he shall approve of, that is also pleasing to God, so that everything that is done may be secure and valid.”
It’s one thing to teach children that Mass and the public expressions of the Sacraments are meant to be celebrated well and properly, with all due reverence, ceremony, and devotion. It is quite another thing, however, to hide them away from the breadth of the contemporary Church for fear that they might be exposed to the form of Mass that the Pope, himself, offers, and that 99% of Roman Catholics attend each Sunday, and thereby imply that the worship of most Roman Catholics is deficient in its very form.
I wonder if a bishop offered the ordinary form of Confirmation in Latin, followed by Mass in the extraordinary form, how many people in attendnace would even notice (or the reverse of that scenario, for that matter). When celebrated optimally, the two forms are more similar than they are different. Both forms of the Mass confect the Eucharist just as truly, just as both forms of the celebration of any Sacrament give us that Sacrament fully and perfectly.
Somehow I left a thought unfinished in my previous post:
“Either form can be subject to an ugly environment thanks to”
Was meant to read: “Either form can be subject to an ugly environment thanks to the imprudence of the persons involved in hosting it.”
The Pope recently didn’t let him resign …
Centristian, No one is saying that the sacrament is not valid in the OF. And maybe you could reference that Bishop who talked about those very weird topics at an EF confirmation? Regardless it’s true that confirmation, nuptial Mass, funeral in the EF is not the norm. Seeing as how it isn’t the norm I am curious about your reaction to automatically rip the notion to shreds.
Given that young people confirmed in the OF often promptly discontinue practice of their faith afterwards, perhaps the concern of the parents, rightly so, is not so much the form if the rite but the preparation required by Bishops in order to receive the sacrament. If it has a lot of content and is meaningful, then one would expect that young people would be connected to a more and more mature expression of faith, not to simply, give it up at the first opportunity and not look back until ready to get married or even ready to present a child for baptism, if at all.
It’s admirable if where you are the confirmations are fabulous and meaningful. I don’t know how common that actually is. But why not then have confirmations, for everyone, in the EF? That sounds really quite merciful and generous. It doesn’t require the Mass in the EF does it — couldn’t they receive the sacrament apart from a Mass? All would be edified by the preparation. Is it better, spiritually, to invite a teen to, investigate the sacrament and the prayers, to consider what they say, and what they are getting into, and with free will assent to that, or, to hide the content or diminish it, let them socialize as they will all do anyway over pizza and then, give the sacrament to all comers and be done with it? As a parent I would be suspicious of the latter, since that seems to deprive a young person of the opportunity to know and consider and choose freely what they are being invited by the Church to do. Isn’t it also true with respect to all sacraments that if one doesn’t freely choose it that the grace imparted could be affected? If one hasn’t looked into its meaning and considered it fully as an adult can it be said that one then chooses the sacrament in an act of free will? How is it better when a teen is pushed to receive it because a parent wants it and that’s that.
If just the notion of confirmation in the EF makes you so angry that you have then to trot out, to amaze and dazzle us, legends and tales of, freemasons, prohibiting ladies from attending college, etc etc etc, I don’t think that should necessarily be what we ought to lead with. A paranoid, embittered fear of “some people” who insist on ladies wearing skirts, first and foremost? It’s just not reality or common. A great many professional working educated women who raise their daughters to be fully in the world, competent, knowledgeable, confident, fully empowered, prefer the EF. You think that somehow they do not exist? That they do not matter or should not be listened to or that we should consider, overall and above all else, your experience with some nut obsessed with freemasonry?
I’m sorry but I think that precisely in these mothers taking the temperature of the times as they are in the world and know exactly what is going on, they are fully cognizant of what is needed as far as supporting and listening to young people’s genuine needs, as far as responding to what the Church is doing in a universal sense, and of being creative and faithful about how best to respond and cooperate with that. Even if not attached to the EF I would desire that for my own family as a parent and consent to the rite even if it is not familiar to me so that my child could live his faith so prepared and aware.
As to parents cooperating with the Church in raising their children in the faith, well, obviously there is a meeting of the minds there such that Bishops are happy to do this. I think that’s a false dichotomy that the catechism doesn’t support, to pit family against Bishop. It’s both. Is there really dialogue and support? There sure ought to be.
Since the EF is still quite rare it is utterly ridiculous to say that these children will be rendered unable to function at an OF, even if a hootenanny, however it turns out. The mostly irreverent OF is and has been the prevailing and totally empowered norm for quite a long time, decades, and given that some in authority feel it just fine to curse people out publicly to a newspaper as “foolish” then it looks like that situation will be continuing no matter what we all have to say here. So your paranoia or charitable thoughts towards these EF-prepared confirmandi is misplaced. Believe me, they will be able fully to pray in the OF. Not going to be a problem.
You can rage all you want but I think that you are on the whole kind of out of touch on this one.
Again Centristan? Really?
Do you honestly expect me to believe this? Given the hobgoblins you evoke, I can only assume that you are hinting that Bishop Williamson gave the Confirmation. I’ve been to a Confirmation given by Bishop Williamson (at St. Athanasious in Vienna, VA). His sermon was nothing like your invention. The “worst” thing he did was rather forcefully assert that the Catholic Church was the only True Church and that those of other religions were risking their Salvation.
As my sons would say, I’m throwing the BS flag and calling a 15 yard penalty.
Restoration, you have given me new faith in seeing the presence of St. Joseph in fathers. Bravo! As the psalm says, what a joy it must be to have sons like a quiver of arrows. But also for them to have a dad like you.
\\Perhaps I have you confused with someone else, but I find you comment of ” So what does it matter which form is used?” somewhat … odd … coming from whom (I thought) was an Eastern Catholic\\
This is PRECISELY what I’m saying. ALL authorized rites of the church are equally efficacious.
Both forms of the Roman Rite (as well as all the others) confer the COMPLETE Holy Spirit on the recipient.
**when you write “there are some trads who seem to think that the EF has stronger juju” you are answering a question that hasn’t been posed. Only a sedevacantist would say that an EF confirmation confers some sacrament the OF doesn’t.
The problem is, therefore, not in them but in you. They don’t have a problem with the OF’s sacramental validity, but you have a problem with them wanting the EF.**
No, I don’t.
Actually, Mundabor, I’ve seen trads in other places claim that the EF is more grace filled than the OF in anything. And I’ve seen Orthodox holding similar absurdities. To look at the worst of one rite and compare it with the best of another it totally unjust, though it’s a trick that’s been used by all factions.
I have no problem with people preferring one or the other of the authorized liturgical uses of the Church. That’s why the Church is Catholic–she has something for everybody. I make no secret of my preference for the Byzantine tradition, but I respect and honor ALL of them.
But someone on another blog claimed that the EF confirmation confers “dignity, tradition, and reverence”–things not on any list of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit–and the OF does not. This is foolish and possible heretical.
And this Cardinal was being tasteless and rude in his own remarks.
Well if one wants alternatives to the Latin rite that is possible to. But with respect to confirmation isn’t it the case that then one as a parent presents their child for chrismation at the same time as baptism, as an infant? I wonder with respect to parents’ needs to find something, a little more meaningful, for their children how one of the other traditions would regard their joining the tradition and asking that their older child receive chrismation? Of course that would by no means avoid the horror that Centristian would condemn, of a child comfortable in one liturgy having to then participate in another for the sake of the sacrament, though most of the Catholic world they know worships only in the one way…would it prevent the child into adulthood in finding a “home” at the NO? I wonder. And then of course when one presents an infant for the sacrament of confirmation then clearly the parent, before-hand makes the decision for the child and we presume the child’s assent since they are infants. No special knowledge or exercise of free will required. But if we take that as our model then reverence in the liturgy, including chant and ad orientem worship, shouldn’t be barred, nor should parents’ excellent hopes that the entire inquiry not be rendered just another social gathering since that may be had elsewhere and often in more diverse, even tolerant, surroundings but involve some genuine expression of faith and a celebration of that.
“Actually, Mundabor, I’ve seen trads in other places claim that the EF is more grace filled than the OF in anything”.
The argument for the EF must be seen in the light of what sincere EF supporter say and want, not in light of what conveniently picked nutcases may believe.
If you mix together nutcases with sincere Catholics preferring the EF and call all of them “trads” you are being confusing in the best case, and disingenous in the worst.
If I had your forma mentis, I would say that NO masses should not be celebrated because we know that many NO churchgoers do not believe in the Real Presence; or that they shouldn’t be celebrated because someone has told me that he has received communion to 77.5% . But I obviously don’t, because I know that what nutcases say is not a valid argument against the NO.
I don’t think I can agree (shocking, I know) with the statement that “ALL authorized rites of the church are equally efficacious” I understand that the Sacraments “produce” Grace ex opere operato, but the fruits of the Sacraments – their efficaciousness – are dependent (or so I thought) on the disposition of the recipient. It seems reasonable to me then, (completely avoiding the OF /EF debate) that one could argue that one rite better prepares the disposition of recipients than another, despite that both validly confect the same Sacrament.
“I have no problem with people preferring one or the other of the authorized liturgical uses of the Church”.
Then I suggest that you do not make any opposition to those who want a confirmation in the EF in the first place. As other have pointed out, no one has demanded that the OF be banned.
As to the dignity and reverence, a Mass can be celebrated more or less reverently, or with more or less dignity, without this having any effect on the sacramental validity of the consecration. It is somewhat surprising that a priest would not see the difference between “dignity, tradition and reverence” on the one side, and sacramental validity on the other. Where the potential heresy be, you don’t say.
I have seen masses *celebrated with very little reverence*, and *attended with utter irreverence*. All of them OF, obviously. But no Catholic with a minimum of instruction would tell you that their consecration was a lesser one in any shape, way or form.
Just as I don’t say, “Well, they bring out the drum set…or, I saw a giant puppet head…or, the liturgy was led by a bunch of clowns (literally)…or…widespread and dictated irreverence…or integration of non theistic or non monotheistic religious tradition…or nice music with dissenting doctrine and quirky and strained interpretation of scripture…or self and group centered worship…or there was a liturgical dance on the altar…or we all wrote down our sins, received group absolution as in on the battlefield and then lit a giant bonfire over which we roasted weenies and marshmallows and sung kumbaya and pete seeger…or the Protestants in attendance were formally invited to the pastor to come up and receive the Eucharist and he would not take no for an answer…or after the religious ed training we walked out to the sidewalk and found a tree around which we stood on the cement and held hands around the tree and evoked mother nature’s nurturing ways…or, different, not universal, technically listed as illicit yet still according to the legalisms still minimally valid…or “Here is what Pope Joan has to say on…or we sing marty haugen for many decades though he is a Church basher and we like it that way…or the folk ditties one might sing at a revival/hootenanny…it all has happened and does but still at the end of the day I don’t despise worshippers. And I don’t believe for one moment that the average person in the pew has demanded this. Nor can we find it referenced in VII.
Whereas if a family in all humility and charity asks for confirmation in the EF, I don’t expect that it is out of a family (now you are talking, two married adults responsible for, jobs, household, education, children, etc…) I don’t think a family will say, and by the way, Bishop, it’s about the freemasons…?! Or here we are, utter fools as we may be yet we think it could be a really nice thing for our family and these other ones besides to have our young adults prepared to meet the future (win it?) by learning prayers and hymns and why the sacrament. Here, you can even interview and meet with our young people and see what they say. If they say, well, my freemason hating dad is forcing me…well. Or if they say, we just want the pizza and the confirmation so we don’t have to go to church anymore. Well. But if they say, we are interested in this and here is why and here is where we see ourselves to be heading, to meet the universal call to holiness, then. I should think a kind and pastoral Bishop, unafraid of what the gossips will say, could do, a lot worse by himself, what he has agreed to do, and his flock. Why could it be said that, we will have all these other various things, and they will be ok but if you want this particular thing, then, no to you, and not only no but, you and all to whom this thought crosses your mind, you are fools, and, we’ll fix it so that no one will ever even attempt to ask lest they be condemned in future as freemason conspiracy theorists, temple police, or whatever other mean mccarthyist name we can cook up.
Why do these families even have to give an explanation. No one asks the clowns or the puppet heads to give us a reasonable reading of scripture or tradition to explain the million dollar question, why. They are Catholics, it is a tradition and real part of the very fabric of our faith, it should be fine. What is the problem. If the wild freemason militia comes out in force then I’m sure there could be some kind and charitable approaches employed…but to lead with the paranoid fantasy I don’t think is really going to be helpful or pastoral.
\\ It is somewhat surprising that a priest would not see the difference between “dignity, tradition and reverence” on the one side, and sacramental validity on the other. \\
In fairness, I don’t think the person who said this was a priest, and I never said he was.
\\Where the potential heresy be, you don’t say.\\
I have mentioned it elsewhere, but I will be clear here. I believe that the notion that the Church would ever promulgate invalid or ineffectual rites is to disbelieve the indefectability and infallibility of the Church,
I suppose it depends on what is meant by “ineffectual”. If you mean “completely unable to fulfill its intended role of imparting Grace to the faithful”, I would tend to agree with you. On the other hand, if it means “Is only poorly able..”, then I would disagree.
Getting back to the original pont of this thread, Cardinal Lemann’s remarks certainly seem to indicate that he believes that Confirmation in the Older form is “ineffectual” in the first sense of the word. They are therefor far worse than “tasteless and rude”, don’t you think?
no, the remarks, however rude, do not postulate ineffectualness of the EF.
the fact that a great number who are confirmed in the OF promptly discontinue attending Mass just as soon as they are able
is not far from a – sad – logical necessity as long as Holy Confirmation remains an (albeit not in the strictest sense necessary) piece of Everychristian’s initiation. (With “Christian” I mean here the ones that get to be baptized, not only the ones who choose to practise their faith.)
That’s, of course, a dilemma. However, I just can’t see what could be done about it. Unbureaucratical decision of admission by, say, the parish priest would tend to be unjust, producing exteriorness of worship, open to cronyism, and above all violating can 213. And every bureaucracy to deal with it – which, in fact, exists with these regrettable “Sunday Mass attendance certifications” – will produce the habit to do no more than necessary for slipping through its net.
In this EF communities are on advantage because though I don’t accuse them of elitism, they are an elite. Now it’s not their fault that there aren’t those less practising their faith among them. They attend the EF thinking, as I think, that the EF is in general more alike their personal preferences; they may attend it thinking, which as well is their right as (to use the expression) mature Christian, that saving all questions of validity and legitimity the OF is objectively better. They are perfectly right under Summorum Pontificum and Universae Ecclesiae to do so. Their children are, in my opinion, perfectly right to ask for Holy Confirmed in the rite they attend, or the form they prefer. They may even, in my opinion, be not unhappy- after the decision to do so – about the fact that they don’t have to deal with the “confirmed-and-out” majority of their coconfirmands.
But they wouldn’t in my opinion be right to avoid an OF confirmation for the sake of avoiding this majority. That would, among the whole mass of things unjustly titled elitism, a real case of it.
please read: “that the EF is objectively better”. Otherwise I don’t make sense. Sorry.
Imrahil, I really don’t think it is so much about avoiding the OF, when it comes to confirmation for young people, teens, as much as it is about the preparation. Undertaking to learn the prayers and hymns in the EF necessarily requires a level of comprehension that gives the preparation a bit more seriousness, it makes it a commitment, and when one has to translate a different language then one also is forced to consider the content and the assent given to that is out of a freely made choice after consideration of what the Church is proposing. As I said about preparation in the OF surely varies by Diocese. If we were able to actually put aside the hatred and stereotypes for one single moment, wouldn’t that type of preparation be what all families would like ideally for their children? If we agree that we all would want our young people so prepared, jumping over the vitriolic hostility, why should it not then be the norm rather than the exception?
In the old days Confirmation was not given during Mass. A lot of priests I have spoken to have grave reservations about the changes to the ritual books which in some respects are more damaging than the changes to the Mass. It is a question of efficacy, not validity. When the new rite of exorcism was promulgated in 1998 trained exorcists claimed that it was less effective, and so Cardinals Ratzinger and Medina said carry on with the rite of 1614.
I attend OF Mass every Sunday and as director of the schola have introduced plenty of Latin and Gregorian Chant, with the encouragement of the priests who now celebrate ad orientem; but when it comes to Extreme Unction I will insist (if I have the strength to do so) on the older rite and my obsequies (Placebo, Dirige and Requiem) will be according to the Usus Antiquior.
indeed why shouldn’t it? I only have a fancy – which I don’t particularly like – that if it should become the norm, those that quit Church attendance would just switch from the now-norm to the then-norm. They might become less in number. I doubt, though I don’t like my doubt, that they wouldn’t be there any more.
That’s all I have said: the fact that “they drop” out is in itself not a decisive argument.
And well yes, avoiding the kind of preparation usually given – though I don’t know the way Americans do it – might be a quite good reason to opt for the form which is extraordinary this day. Said without any complaints against the preparators in general, but those who train them (if they get any training at all) or those who design the programs, rather than those who perform them, might one day think of something better.
There might also be complaints against the preparators in particular; e. g. those who mistake their youths for children and do the candle tinkering etc. stuff even besides the program designed by the parish…