It seems diocesan bishops can ordain using the older rite of ordination after all!

Here is something that merits attention.  As you might recall, the clarificatory document about Summorum Pontificum from the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei” entitled Universae Ecclesiae indicated that the Pontificale Romanum was to be used for ordinations only by those groups which had general permission to use the older books.  (cf. no. 31).  In other words, diocesan bishops couldn’t ordain their own men with it.

However, that appears not to be the case.  At the time Universae Ecclesiae came out, I opined that bishops could ask for permission the PCED to use the older form.

I saw this on Rorate:

On October 23, 2011 the Bishop of Frejus-Toulon, Msgr. Dominique Rey, ordained a new priest for his diocese using the 1962 Pontifical. The new priest, Fr. Jean Christophe Pelegri, was ordained by Msgr. Rey to the diaconate on May 11 of this year, only two days before the promulgation of Universae Ecclesiae.) A photo gallery is in the Picasa account of the Cathedral of Frejus-Toulon.

Msgr. Rey has been known to give the seminarians of his diocese the privilege of choosing the rite of their ordination, and it seems that Universae Ecclesiae will not put a stop to this practice, as had been earlier feared or predicted by some commentators. Earlier this year, 15 new priests had been ordained for the Diocese of Frejus-Toulon according to the liturgical books of Paul VI.

Interesting, no?

I suppose that the bishop sought permission to use the Pontifical to ordain a priest for his diocese and obtained it.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Brick by Brick, Just Too Cool, New Evangelization, Our Catholic Identity, SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM, The Drill, The future and our choices, Universae Ecclesiae. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Legisperitus says:

    Huzzah! Let’s hope many more bishops ask for permission.

  2. irishgirl says:

    I say a second ‘Huzzah’!
    As the French would say, ‘Vive Monseigneur Dominique Rey”!

  3. dominic1955 says:

    That’s old news. That bishop ordained a priest or two with the traditional book last year.

    I’m guessing the real issue is that the good bishop is taking the “never abrogated” thing at face value. If the Old Rite (and that means the whole kit and kaboodle of the Old Books) was never abrogated, there is no need to ask “permission” for a Roman Rite bishop to use the Pontificale of the Roman Rite.

  4. RichR says:

    It’s nice to see Bishops seeking a more generous expansion of the terms outlined in UE. I’m sure any bishop that asked would gladly be given this permission. However, the Holy See is wise to safeguard the new ordination rite with the language employed in the documents. It prevents the fringe tabloids from going nutty with insinuations of invalidity.

  5. mrose says:

    A third huzzah!

    And a noteworthy point from dominic1955 – if the books were never abrogated, then why would an Instruction from an office of the Holy See trump that?

  6. Supertradmum says:

    This is excellent news, and real progress. And, as I have read Michael Davies on this and looked carefully at both Rites, I think the Old one is superior in language and depth, as well as what it covers. I hope other bishops will do likewise and request this older form of the sacrament.

  7. Hidden One says:

    Vive Monseigneur Dominique Rey!

  8. moon1234 says:

    This is good news! I want it all back! I want the next Pope to have the papal corination with all of the regalia, pomp and circumstance his office affords. The traditional books really make you cry when you read the words and see their meaning.

    The newer books, while vaid, just don’t have the same connection with the sublime and divine nature of the office.

    Congratulations to those deacons who have the intestinal fortitude to request this of their Bishop!

  9. Legisperitus says:

    moon1234: I hope you meant “valid” and not “vapid.” :)

  10. pfreddys says:

    It seems this bishop has a proportionally large number of men to ordain. Perhaps his approach of giving the men the option at which rite they wish should be adopted as a bishop’s “Best Practice”.

  11. ChrisWhittle says:

    Why can’t they ordain using the Extraordinary Form? It’s a shame that priests are not ordained using the Traditional Rite of Priestly Ordination, and it’s mostly because of the bishop. I went to a Novus Ordo ordination a few years back, and the whole thing was done wrong. (Don’t forget this is in a diocese that is falling apart.) I have a friend who is now a transitional deacon who is scheduled to be ordained a priest in 2012. He’s been learning the Extraordinary Form in the seminary, and if he doesn’t speak-up and have someone ordain him traditionally, then I WILL NOT BE GOING to the annual Novus Ordo “moving up” ceremony.

  12. Mitchell NY says:

    Just ask for permission. It is the correct route spelled out by UE. If we want it respected we have to respect it ourselves. Most likley, which appears to be the case, the Holy See will approve the request. I suspect as well that the reason for the need to ask for permission is to preserve the unity and integrity of the NO Missal and the 62 books. The questioning of validity is a serious charge and the attempt to minimalize that question appears the impetus here. We may not agree with it but one can understand the reasons behind it.

  13. NewfieSem says:

    It is amazing to note that this Diocese (Frejus-Toulon) also has the highest Ordination rate in France. The Diocese in second place is Metz, with 6.
    I wonder if any connection exists?

  14. leonugent2005 says:

    Moon1234 I certain that the college of Cardinals will provide you with what you are looking for.

Comments are closed.