QUAERITUR: Why so many variations in Mass depending on the priest?

From a reader:

I am a new convert to the Faith within the last nine months, and I am
still in the process of joining the Church formally. As such I’m still
learning a good deal about the Church, her liturgy, etc. One thing
that I’ve noticed that’s struck me as odd is the sheer number of
variations there are within the ordinary form. I’ve seen Priests vary
how they hold the Hosts during consecration, I’ve seen some not even
raise the Host. Then after the canon of the Mass I’ve seen some
variance regarding whether the Priest raises the Host over the Chalice
in front of the people, or whether they just raise them both in
opposite hands, and on and on. Are any of these type of variations
liturgical abuses, or is there *that* much room for variation in the

Congratulations on your journey into union with the Church Christ Himself established.

In a nutshell, some decades ago in the books for the older form of Holy Mass, what we call the Extraordinary Form, there were clear indications that some “defects” in how the priest celebrated Mass were sins. The Missal said, in black and white, that if a priest did certain things wrong he committed a sin. Furthermore, since the issue of rubrics (the red writing in the Missal providing “stage directions” for Mass) was a matter of moral theology, when seminarians and priests studied moral theology and also how to say Mass, they learned specific ways to do things. There would still be a little variation from priest to priest, but in general every priest in the world said Mass more or less the same way.

Sadly, some seminarians and priests who came out of particularly rigid programs of formation because, if they were on the scrupulous side, fixated on certain details of celebration to such an extent that their concerns for perfection were rather unhealthy. This rigidity in some, tarred the whole clear, precise method and approach to following the rubrics with the same brush. When the chance came with the post-Conciliar reform of the liturgy, the complex web of clear and understandable rules was swept aside. There was no longer any mention of sin in the forward for the newer Missal (Ordinary Form) if someone went off and did his own thing or made up his own words. There was also a terrible antinomian spirit that flooded into the Church through that crack Paul VI famously mentioned as the ingress of the smoke of Satan. There was a wave of wild-experimentation that was utterly at odds with the way Catholics had done things for centuries.

We are still living in trailing edge of the riptide of those times, especially when it comes to priests who went through those wild days in the 60s and priests who were trained by the iconoclasts through about the 80s.

Another problem is that the book for the Ordinary Form describes how to do certain things in rather vague terms. Therefore, variations crop up.  Some legitimate.  Some not.

Happily younger priests are more and more inclined to follow the book exactly, to say the black words on the page and do what the red words indicate. They are happy to take their cue from the older, Extraordinary Form to recuperate a Roman style of celebration consistent with our Latin Church identity.

In short, we are growing out of the silly season.

But we are a long way from consistency from priest to priest (especially those of a certain age) when it comes to the Ordinary Form. It’ll take quite a while for that to happen.

This is one of the reason why we need more and more and more celebrations of Holy Mass with the Extraordinary Form. This is one of the reasons Pope Benedict issued his provision in his document Summorum Pontificum, the “emancipation proclamation” for the older form of Mass.  He thinks that a kind of gravitational pull will be exerted by side-by-side use of both Forms of the Roman Rite.  The growing use of the older, Extraordinary Form will do a great deal to clean up liturgical sloppiness in the Ordinary Form.

In the meantime, don’t let the small variations bother you too much, unless they are simply weird.  And you should also attend the Extraordinary Form if it is available in your area.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, ASK FATHER Question Box, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Our Catholic Identity, SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Christo et Ecclesiae says:

    Very well-written, Padre! Thank you. It’s exciting to be a young Catholic on that “trailing edge” you spoke of… to see the beauty of the Latin Rite to shine through while the healthy growth since VII is retained amidst all the insanity.

  2. Tom Esteban says:

    Go to a Tridentine Mass! It really does bring it home that most new converts today are unhappy with the Novus Ordo in some way or another, though that perhaps isn’t always the case. Anyway, I hope he/she will start regularly attending the TLM.

    On a related note, though, I attended an OF Mass at the Brompton Oratory which was actually quite nice simply because I had never once seen the OF ad orientem. I bet they do a good TLM.

  3. Sixupman says:

    My experience of Oratory clergy, throughout Europe, is that they Celebrate the NOM strictly in the manner which was intended and with the same fervour as they Celebrate the TLM. Regardless of ‘New Translation’, diocesan clergy appear to make it up as they go along, according to their own whims!

  4. It’s a funny old business, this rubrical thing. Now traditionally-minded priests (including me) tend to elevate the Sacred Host high, even when facing the people, after each Consecration, and for the per ipsum raise the Host over the Chalice a short way.
    I have been rebuked for both these practices by those who maintain that I am being disobedient to the rubrics, which make a distinction between the Consecration (after which the celebrant is directed to merely ‘show’ the Host and Chalice to the people), and the per ipsum which directs him to ‘elevate’ (i.e. lift high) the Host (on the paten) and the Chalice.
    So, to whirl around holding the Host vertically at chest level is to do the red, whereas (as at the Reformation) to elevate It is to be disobedient. And not to elevate, lift high, both paten and chalice at the per ipsum is likewise to be disobedient.
    A hermeneutic of continuity would suggest that one interpret ‘show’ as ‘elevate’—if it were not for the fact that the word ‘elevate’ is used later and is consciously not used at the Consecration.
    A way out of this is to celebrate in the manner of the Holy Father who, I think, does it in the traditional way. Whatever the books and the ‘liturgists’ say, I think that the very definition of the Roman Rite is what the Holy Father does.
    Unless one is Paul Inwood, of course, who considers that (unlike himself) the Holy Father is not a liturgist, and therefore has nothing worthwhile to say on the matter.

  5. Correction: I find that the Extraordinary Form also uses ‘ostendit populo’ after the consecrations and ‘elevans (parum)’ for the Per Ipsum. Therefore one is completely at liberty to interpret these in line with tradition. Except, perhaps, for the paten at the Per Ipsum.

  6. Cath says:

    I wonder how strong is the correlation between how Mass is offered and what the people in the pews believe? My college age son said to me last night that one of the complaints his non-Catholic friends have about the Church is that it seems Catholics believe so many different things.

  7. TNCath says:

    The irony of the present day seems to be that most older priests, those ordained just before, during, or after Vatican II, developed a “liturgical style” by taking their cues from those giving “workshops” on the Novus Ordo in the aftermath of the Council. Mass facing the people turned priests into performers who were told to make eye contact with the people, extend their arms broadly so as to “gather” and “welcome” the “people of God” to the “table of the Lord” and other such silliness. And, since no one in authority seemed to mind or care at the time, these variations of practices have continued to the present day. And now, with the advent of the new translations, these men who have spent 30-40 years saying Mass by “doing their own thing” resent being told, after all these years, “No, Father, you have to read the texts verbatim.” While I am happy to see the gravitational pull back to uniformity in worship, I’m afraid we are going to have to put up with the remnants of the “silly season” for a number of years to come. “We’d like to welcome all of you here to St. Withit parish today on this beautiful spring morning. A special welcome to our visitors” and “The Mass is ended: have a great day” still rings out in parishes all over this country.

  8. PhilipNeri says:

    I’ve lived in five provinces of the Order in about 10 different priories/house. Everywhere I’ve lived the resident friars assure me that they celebrate the Mass and pray the hours according to the Roman rite. . .and at every single place both the Mass and the hours were prayed with variations in the Roman rite and one from another.

    It’s not possible to celebrate either the EF or the OF perfectly. The rubrics are too vague (as Fr. Z. correctly notes). The rubric instructs the priest to lift the consecrated host “slightly” above the paten. How many inches is “slightly above”? Another instructs the priest to read the prayer with “arms extended.” Does this mean his arms should look like a football referee signaling a field goal, or someone trying to push open a door with both hands, or someone warding off a surprise frontal attack to his shoulders?

    Now, priests of a certain generation will take the vagueness of some rubrics and pretend that all the rubrics are vague. Others will take rubrical silence as permission. And some just don’t care one way or another. Bad liturgical habits are hard to break–I have a few myself–so a little patience goes a long way!

    Fr. Philip Neri, OP

  9. Supertradmum says:


    I would guess that one of the mottoes of this blog would be “lex orandi, lex credendi”. This can be translated in several ways, but the most common is “the law of prayer is the law of belief”. The Catechism has this to help you answer your own question:”The Church’s faith precedes the faith of the believer who is invited to adhere to it. When the Church celebrates the sacraments, she confesses the faith received from the apostles – whence the ancient saying: lex orandi, lex credendi (or: legem credendi lex statuat supplicandi, according to Prosper of Aquitaine). The law of prayer is the law of faith: the Church believes as she prays. Liturgy is a constitutive element of the holy and living Tradition.”

    One of my teachers used to extrapolate and say, “The way we pray is the way we believe.” So, briefly, yes, the correlation is clear and an ancient awareness. Sometimes, the phrase is lengthened to include, “lex vivendi”, adding the idea that how we live follows on how we pray and what we believe. It is so wonderful being a Catholic which such a rich heritage of Liturgy and Theology.

  10. The Liturgy, OF or EF, is not just text and rubrics. It is Christ truly present to us, renovating our relationship with Him everytime we participate in the Liturgy. So, it really does matter! How we pray is not just what we believe but He in Whom we believe. Dom Prosper Gueranger , OSB, said, of the yearly liturgy: “It is therefore Jesus Christ Himself who is the source as well as the object of the liturgy; and hence [the Liturgy]…is neither more nor less than the manifestation of Jesus Christ and His mysteries, in the Church and in the fiahtful soul.”

  11. Innocentius says:

    The “defects” mentioned is found in the front pages of the Missale Romanum of the Tridentine Rite, the papal Bull of St. Pius V, “De Defectibus, which Fr. Z discussed sometime ago. Why it was removed from the “Ordinary” Roman Missal of the Novus Ordo Missae we can essay a guess — it is just plain too cumbersome, too demanding, among other things, and it just wouldn’t fit into the modernization of the Mass. The celebrant (now called “presider”) can’t be bothered with all those things regarding Form, Matter, Intention, etc. So if some of these are missing, are we congregants missing something or deprived of the graces merited from attending the Mass?

    Here is the Introduction to De Defectibus:

    “The priest who is to celebrate Mass should take every precaution to make sure that none of the things required for celebrating the Sacrament of the Eucharist is missing. A defect may occur with regard to the matter to be consecrated, with regard to the form to be observed and with regard to the consecrating minister. There is no Sacrament if any of these is missing: the proper matter, the form, including the intention, and the priestly ordination of the celebrant. If these things are present, the Sacrament is valid, no matter what else is lacking. There are other defects, however, which may involve sin or scandal, even if they do not impair the validity of the Sacrament.”

    The celebration of the Mass requires PERFECTION.

    From the article, The One Catholic Mass, we are told: “To know whether any given Mass presents all the requisite or desirable characteristics of perfection, one will observe that it is the action of Christ which assures its validity, the co-operation of the Church which assures its liceity, and the disposition of the priest and the faithful which assures its benefit.”

    And by the way, in the Tridentine Rite the priest keeps his thumb and forefinger closed together in both hands right after the Words of Institution (This is My Body) and keeps them closed until after the purification or ablution of the Chalice. No longer needed in the N.O.M. sinced anybody can now touch the Host and the Chalice.

    “Because out of reverence towards this sacrament, nothing touches it, but what is consecrated; hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest’s hands, for touching this sacrament.” – St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, III, Q. 82, Art. 3

  12. Anne 2 says:

    Regarding the LITURGY OF THE MASS in the USA in the Roman Catholic rite – – – all Priests are required to follow GIRM (General Instruction of the Roman Missal of Nov 2011) for the Ordinary Form of the Mass;
    and the 1962 Missal for the Extraordinary Form (aka Tridentine/Latin Mass).
    You can find GIRM on the USCCB web site, or purchase a copy from them.

    “Regulation of the sacred liturgy depends solely on the authority of the Church, that is, on the Apostolic See and as laws may determine, on the Bishop……Therefore no other person, not even a priest, may add, remove, or change anything in the liturgy on his own authority.” – Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict), Ratzinger Report. (Sacrosactum concilium, no. 22, 1 & 3)

    If Laity witness an abuse of the Mass, they should talk privately to the Priest, if that does not work we contact the Diocese Bishop, if that does not work we contact the US Papal Nuncio and the Vatican.

    As stated by another poster, I also very highly recommend reading the “CATECHISM of the CATHOLIC CHURCH, Second Edition” which was first publised in the USA in March 2000 and has a dark green cover. The copywrite is held by the Holy See.
    “…….. the Catechism has raised throughout the world, even among non-Christians, and confirms its purpose of being presented as a full, complete exposition of Catholic doctrine, enabling everyone to know what the Church professes, celebrates, lives and prays in her daily life” – Pope John Paul II, (CCC pg xiv).
    “Through the harmonious and complementary efforts of all the ranks of the People of God, may this Catechism be known and shared by everyone, so that the unity in faith whose supreme model and origin is found in the Unity of the Trinity may be strengthened and extended to the ends of the earth” – Pope John Paul II (CCC pg xv).

  13. Anne 2 says:

    Cath –
    If your son is over age 16 and lives in the USA, he should be able to read and understand the “CCC 2nd Ed”. Catholics all believe the same things – those that are contained in the CCC. After reading it, your son should be able to explain to his friends that some Catholics are heretics or schismatics.
    CCC: ” 2089 INCREDULITY is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it. HERESY is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same;
    APOSTACY is the total repudiation of the Christian faith;
    SCHISM is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.”

    “Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise and obstinate doubt concerning the same. As regards sanctions, Canon 1364 stipulates that the heretic as well as the apostate and schismatic incurs excommunication latae sententiae. ” Cardinal Ratzinger, “Ratzinger Report” pg 24 & 25.

    “The Catholic Church is not a salad bar. We can not pick and choose what we want to believe.” – Cardinal John O’Connor.

    “ The Catechism of the Catholic Church, which I approved … and the publication of which I today order by virtue of my Apostolic Authority, is a statement of the Church’s faith and of catholic doctrine, attested to or illumined by Sacred Scripture, the Apostolic Tradition and the Church’s Magisterium. I declare it to be a sure norm for teaching the faith and thus a valid and legitimate instrument for ecclesial communion. “ – Pope John Paul II.

  14. Supertradmum says:


    Just curious, why 16 years of age for understanding such things? In most home schooling groups I was in , the moms had 12 to 14 year olds reading Belloc on heresies and histories of the Church which included descriptions of certain heresies. We finished Anne Carroll’s books in junior high, that is eleven and up.

    In fact, children as young as nine can understand such things by reading the lives of the saints, like Thomas a Becket, and the martyrs, as many were killed by heretics, or in Roman times, because they were considered heretics, or even discussions in families as to why certain extended family members do not go to Church albeit with charity. We used to play heresy watch and pick out such on the back of cereal boxes or commercials. The age of reason is seven. And, the Creed is taught in First Communion preparation or Confirmation prep. Some children are confirmed as early as eleven. Sixteen is an arbitrary age, it seems to me.

    Sixteen is a bit late to learn these things and some adolescents I know started reading the CCC earlier than that age. I taught religion to junior high students and I can assure you we covered these concepts and vocabulary.

  15. Supertradmum says:

    PS I was twelve when I first read Come Rack, Come Rope, which is one of Robert Hugh Benson’s best novels on the persecution under Elizabeth l. The reading level is quite easy and the story riveting. Even the kids reading The Lord of The Rings in junior high leads to discussions of heresy and apostasy regarding the elves. There are many ways to introduce such ideas and vocabulary at ages much earlier than 16, which by the way, is the age of school leaving in England, unless one goes on to Sixth Form College.

  16. Tom T says:

    Thank you Fr. Z for the encouragement. I am grateful you explained it all. I have been waiting
    for silly season to pass for too many years and yes it has at times gotten weird. Where else can you go except to the EF when you have the one true Faith that has been under attack from Satan, from all the history I`ve read, to the second century and well after all, they crucified it`s founder. Patience is a virtue we are supposed to work for in our lives. Happy New year to you and all your readers and commentators. Pax.

  17. aspiringpoet says:

    “I have been rebuked for both these practices by those who maintain that I am being disobedient to the rubrics, which make a distinction between the Consecration (after which the celebrant is directed to merely ‘show’ the Host and Chalice to the people), and the per ipsum which directs him to ‘elevate’ (i.e. lift high) the Host (on the paten) and the Chalice.
    So, to whirl around holding the Host vertically at chest level is to do the red, whereas (as at the Reformation) to elevate It is to be disobedient. And not to elevate, lift high, both paten and chalice at the per ipsum is likewise to be disobedient.”

    Reading this makes me very sad. I have seen priests do the side-to-side whirl at chest level that you describe, and other abbreviated forms of “showing,” and it has actually made me cry in the past (and I’m not talking about the gift of tears). The elevations are the most beautiful moments of the Mass, why abbreviate them in any way? Please keep doing what you are doing, showing reverence to Our Lord.

  18. scottylellis says:

    There is a way in which strict, unyielding rubrics can call to mind the impersonal state religions throughout world history. Take, for instance, what Rodney Stark writes in Discovering God:

    “One reason that priests oppose religious innovations is because their status rests on a mastery of a relatively complex body of knowledge – especially rituals. Once learned, it is not lightly discarded in favor of something new. In addition, their education into the priesthood is steeped in the principle that there is a correct view, or a right way, to perform a ritual. Therefore, innovation is error.”

    It seems to me that the recent movements in the Church towards a more, dare I say, “populist” mass, complete with liturgical innovations, is an attempt to move away from something perceived as rigid, impersonal, or non-engaging. Now I am neither condoning nor condemning such innovation: as a convert to Catholicism, I am trying to sort out my own understanding of the current and ongoing liturgical controversies. With this in mind, I wonder the degree to which Catholicism’s monopoly in Western culture, which lasted roughly until the Reformation and in particular locations longer than that, tended to cultivate a style of worship that rejected innovation (since, to the power-holders within a religion with a virtual monopoly, innovation is usually perceived as subversive) and thus protected ossified rubrics. Since secularization has resulted in a much more open religious market, a new trend (perhaps more so among certain segments of Catholicism) has been towards liturgical freedom and innovation in order to compete on the religious market with a more “personal” or “engaging” worship (whatever that might mean; I fully recognize the ambiguity of those sentiments). Any thoughts?

  19. RichardC says:

    here are a couple of pragmatic reasons why I think the altars should be turned back around: we spend a lot of time staring at the priest and the priest spends a lot of time staring at us. There is a lack of trust implied by the priest always keeping his eyes on the parishoners, as though he fears spit balls being thrown at him. When the priest is unseen when he says the words of consecration (and when he grants absolution, for that matter), there is a kind of modesty in that, as though he is admitting his unworthiness for the universe shattering activity that he is involved in. also, as I have heard else, he is leading us into heaven. also, the changes , to me, seem tv inspired, and oddly what makes for better tv make for worse sacrimental activity.imo AMDG

  20. Random Friar says:

    After a certain Mass, one of the faithful took the great pains of pointing out to me that I did not say the absolution “May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins…” after the Confiteor and before the Gloria. He kept insisting on telling me how it should be there, and even offering musical help if I wanted to sing it, and asking why I didn’t say it, over and over again.

    “Because I forgot.” I replied.

    Did I know it was there, after the Confiteor?

    *SIGH* “Yes, I simply forgot today. I say it or sing it every other day.” (And this member has been there for many of my Masses).

    Priests do forget things once in a while. Please be willing to give your priest the benefit of the doubt on a “once off.” I don’t try to make political statements with the liturgy, and neither do most priests I know. Funny how the same people don’t run up to me if I forget the collection!

  21. Pingback: SUNDAY EDITION | ThePulp.it

  22. robtbrown says:

    Pastor in Valle says:

    Correction: I find that the Extraordinary Form also uses ‘ostendit populo’ after the consecrations and ‘elevans (parum)’ for the Per Ipsum. Therefore one is completely at liberty to interpret these in line with tradition. Except, perhaps, for the paten at the Per Ipsum.

    There is an obvious difference here between ad orientem and versus populum celebration.

    With the first (AO), ostendit populo actually requires the host/chalice be held high above the head for logistic reasons. With the per ipsum, a lower position would suffice because it is not necessary
    to show the people.

    Likewise, in the second (VP) showing the host doesn’t require it be held high. And after the per ipsum, elevans can be interpreted as merely lifting the chalice off the table.

  23. Supertradmum says:

    And, am I assuming correctly, that all those EMHCs who hold up the Host like the priest does at the

    Behold the Lamb of God,
    behold him who takes away the sins of the world.
    Blessed are those called to the banquet of the Lamb

    are dead wrong? Hate it, as it pretends the laity are doing the same as the priest.

  24. Gail F says:

    TNCath makes a good point and I will go one further: The priests the enquirer mentioned have probably gone to all sorts of seminars and events at which they were encouraged to “make the mass their own,” and “make things relevant to the people,” etc. They may even have been trained in the seminary to do this. It’s not as if they all decided on their own to ad lib. They have been encouraged to do it, sometimes for decades. They’re not going to stop now, unless they never really wanted to do it in the first place.

  25. Random Friar says:

    @Supertradmum: Yes, first the EMs should not receive until after the priest does, which means they should not have the Host in the first place. Second, yes, they are mimicking an action reserved to the celebrant (concelebrants should not be doing it, either, AFAIK).

  26. Tom T says:

    Supertradmum and Gail F,
    I agree with both your comments. Sadly Gail F you are correct in your assumption about the seminaries. CTU (Catholic Theological Union) in Chicago is one such place. I know of two very liberal orders of , ” do it your own way Novus Ordo” and wearing of stylish clothes instead
    of clerical garb is the norm, who send their seminarians there for liberation theology studies. And oh, those EMHO`s that take on the clerical duties and usually number way more than is actually needed. Sadly, I am afraid we have a way to go before we are passed silly and yes, weird. Pax

  27. Anne 2 says:

    The reason for age 16 and up for the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” for the average literate American is because Pope Benedict wrote the preface for the YOUCAT “Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church” and recommends the YouCat “” for younger teens. The Baltimore Catechism is still being printed for elementary school age children.
    If your children under age 16 can get the most out of the “CCC 2nd Ed” (which is certainly the complete Catechism), there is nothing wrong with providing them one.
    Catechisms must be age appropriate for understanding, and literacy appropriate for the Country they are being used in.
    (I write about the USA only, and it is best that those from other Countries answer for the situations in their own Countries for the most accurate info. It would be helpful for understanding if everyone would identify their Country, since there are some variances.
    In the USA, the “CCC 2nd Ed” has a green cover, and was first printed in March, 2000. It is published by the USCCB with the copyright held by the Holy See.

    Caution on catechisms in general – – – – – In the “RATZINGER REPORT an exclusive interview of the State of the Church”, Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict) discussed a “shattered catechesis” starting on pg 72.
    He warned: “Some catechisms and many catechists no longer teach the Catholic faith in its harmonic wholeness – where each truth presupposes and explains the other – rather they try to make some elements of the Christain patrimony humanly interesting (according to the cultural orientations of the moment).”

    On average in the USA, I recommend the “CCC 2nd Ed” for all over age 16,
    YOUCAT for younger teens,
    and the “Baltimore Catechism” for children.

    It is the parents first responsibility to educate their children, even if catechesis is not properly done in their Parish or Diocese.

  28. Supertradmum says:

    Random Friar,

    Sometimes, I despair at things in the NO ever coming around to the correct order.

  29. Supertradmum says:


    Well, the youth catechism did not exist for younger ones when I was raising my son and we used the Baltimore Catechism as well. I still think we talk down to kids and do not expect them to rise the educational levels we can set for them despite the horrible school systems. I educated my son in the USA and taught there as well. I taught college students in England, but did some teaching in private Catholic schools in the States. I home schooled by son except for about two years all the way through high school.

    Those books I mentioned are all appropriate for younger ones.

  30. Anne 2 says:

    There are ABUSES at the Mass from the LAITY.

    1. The LAITY is addressed in GIRM as well as Priests and Deacons.
    The LAITY are not supposed to be mimicing the Priest, nor giving the sign of peace to those not near them which is disruptive, etc.

    2. Bishop RJ Foys, explains role of Laity in his Decree of Nov 18, 2011 – no holding hands, no talking in Church before Mass, no laity extending of hands during the Our Father, etc.

    3. EMHCs are only to be used when absolutely necessary.
    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/laity/documents/rc_con_interdic_doc_15081997_en.html ARTICLE 8

    If there are abuses by the Laity in your Parish, talk to your Pastor, if that does not work to your Diocese Bishop, if that does not work to the US Papal Nuncio with a copy to the Vatican.
    It is the responsibility of each of us to do our best to stop liturgical abuses.

    I don’t know why many Diocese Bishops and Parish Priests do not enforce the above, since it is many times the Laity who distract those around them and do not behave appropriately.

    Both the OF and EF Masses are HOLY and must be treated with respect at all times. One Mass when done properly, although different, is not’ better’ than the other.
    To say otherwise is a heresy. Canon 1364 stipulates that the heretic as well as the apostate and schismatic incurs excommunication latae sententiae.
    There are heretics on both the conservative and liberal factions of the Church.
    “Punishable offenses against religion and the unity of the Church – exist….” – Cardinal Ratzinger.

    I recommend reading “The RATZINGER REPORT, an exclusive interview on the State of the Church”. Many may be surprised.

    2. EMHC’s are not to be used unless absolutely necessary.

  31. Anne 2 says:

    Instead of criticizing Christ’s Church, pray for our Pope, Bishops and Priests.
    Be OBEDIENT to the Magisterium; do not tear down our Church.
    Report Liturgical and other ABUSES appropriately.
    Know your Faith so you will know real abuses;
    Read: a Catholic “Bible”; the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition”; Code of Canon Law; and GIRM. The “Ratzinger Report” gives further insite and explanation on the State of the Church today.

  32. Tom T says:

    Thats quite a lofty lecture. Its so nice of you to tell us what we should do in our Church. Silence a has price. Your seeing the results of that with the alarming infiltration of the “one world order” which is the new name for the modernists that Pope St. Pius X warned about in 1907 when he declared it a heresy in the encyclical called Pascendi Domenici Gregis. EWTN as matter of fact did
    a story on some of these very problems New Years eve about the infiltration of the Church and warned that it is on all levels from some of the Pontifical Councils to the parish priests. Some of what you describe as judge. jury and instructionist is merely pointing out what is from the Magisterium and what is not and I assure you that there is considerable disagreement in the Vatican amongst some very learned theologians and philosophers on interpretations of meanings as they apply to certain Dogmas, Post Conciliar Documents of Vat II. I also think it is quite assumptive and judgemental to assume that we are not already praying for our Pope, Bishops and Priests some of whom, by the way created the very problems we are discussing here. A good many abuses we already know they have been discussed on this blog and others for some time. I would suggest that you go and instruct your class properly and tell them how to behave Catholic and allow us to express our concerns about problems we see in the Church with the hope of arousing enough attention from the right people to perhaps change things for the better. These problems have been allowed to creep into our worship and practices precisely because no one said anything or ignored them and did`nt really pay attention and assumed this is all the way it is supposed to be. You may want to deny that there is evil in the Church and that it you don`t need to look at it or describe it`s efforts to tear the Church apart but I would like to ask you, if you don`t look at it how do you recognize it and what it is trying in some very subtle ways to do? I would like to further suggest to you that since the scandals and abuses which were covered up by many bishops, the days of blind obedience are over. The laity is paying close attention to everything. Pax

  33. brunob says:

    But the first variation, the mother of all variations, is in the essence: the NEW Mass has nothing to do with the OLD one, as a luteran- anglican ‘holy communion’ has nothing to do with the catholic Mass of Saint Pius V. [Nooooo. That’s wrong.] That is the reason why the luteran anglican clergy are so in sympathy with the NEW rite, the ordinary one, and so inconcialiable with the OLD rite, the extraordinary one, an extra- understandable rite indeed!

  34. Anne 2 says:

    Tom T., you certainly haven’t read the book I recommended, and therefore you certainly jump to conclusions about people you don’t know. Isn’t that called rash judgment in the CCC.

    The “Ratzinger Report” covers “two counterposed errors” regarding Vatican II, “heresy” relating to Vatican II and unforseen effects; a “prescription against anachronism”; the “problem of episcopal conferences”, an “individualistic theology”, a “shattered catechesis” , “feminism in the convent”, “Fatima and environs”, “liturgy between the old and the new”, and much more directly from Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict).
    I don’t expect anyone to follow MY words or YOURS, that is why I give the source, so people can check it out for themselves.
    EWTN taught me many things, and reading the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” which they sell in their catalogue store is one of them. They strongly support the CCC, and reference it in many programs.
    Obedience is to the Magisterium – not Bishops or Priests who do not teach according to the CCC. Do you know what the Magisterium is? Have you read the “CCC 2nd Ed” from cover to cover?

    In addition, in the past two days I have posted who to contact about liturgical and other abuses. Have you been sleeping? If you only sit and complain in blogs, you will not be very efficient in correcting abuses/errors.

    CCC: ” 2089 INCREDULITY is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it.
    HERESY is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same;
    APOSTACY is the total repudiation of the Christian faith;
    SCHSIM is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.”

    CCC: “2051 The infallibility of the Magisterium of the Pastors extends to all the elements of doctrine, including moral doctrine, without which the saving truths of the faith cannot be preserved, expounded, or observed.”

    Tom if you don’t like any quotes from the CCC, go complain to the Pope.

  35. Tom T says:

    Your pompous and intellectually prideful response, and yes thats my rash judgement and also my view dosen`t really impress me or enlighten me. And no I don`t sit around all day posting on blogs however judging from your comment of posting to, everyones edification, over the last two days, your referances, I must have missed your insightful guidance. [This is going in a bad direction.] Yes I do know what the Magisterium is and I would like to ask you if have read the Post Conciliar Documents of Vatican II
    and the current discussions concerning Benedict XVI`s key to interpreting the councils with innovation and continuity in the Church wherein he talks about “hermeneutics of renewal in continuity” words of Pope Ratzinger, wherein he has failed to satisfy thinkers of the traditionalist
    sphere, who are disappointed with the current Pope as documented recently by Magister in http://www.chiesa. One of the main issues of such comes to us from the book of the respected theologian Brunero Gheradini entitled Quaecumque dixero vobis. Have you read it? He writes in no uncertain terms that “Dignitatis Humanae “renounced” and “reversed” the teachings of the previous popes and not on ” historical decisions” of a practicle nature , but on matters of faith.
    I have no problem with the quotes from the CCC but only with your remarks that assume we are not obedient to, the Magisterium and your false assumption that we don`t pray for our priests, bishops and Pope. So to conclude this contentious discussion there are differances on the infallibility of the doctrine that came from Vat II, of course if you have`nt been following the divisions that occured during and after Vat II well into Pope Ratzingers reign, you would`nt know that. Pax

  36. This discussion is not going in a good direction, in my opinion.

    People need to learn to work and play together. Get my drift?

    Thanks in advance!

  37. Cath says:


    My kids hear “Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi, Lex Vivendi” often from me. I guess my son was trying to understand how we can have so many different people who give the appearance of being in good standing within the Church (and not a word from some bishops to clear up so much confusion) all the while spewing heretical garbage.

    Anne 2

    My son knows the Truths of the Faith. But, if you are trying to explain those Truths to non-Catholic peers (sadly even to some catholic ones as well), it does not help that there are so many catholics who are undermining the Faith. I guess we have a difficult time understanding why those who are charged with protecting the Faith, allow public scandal to go unchecked.

Comments are closed.