A few days ago, I received a new 1962 hand Missal from Angelus Press to review. It represents an extraordinary achievement. As far as I know, it is the only new 1962 Spanish/Latin Missal now in print. More on this Missal later.
This Missal could not come at a more propitious time.
In just a few days, 14 September, Feast of Exaltation of the Cross, we will celebrate the 7th Anniversary of the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum. Pope Benedict issued this “emancipation proclamation” on 7 July 2007 (07/07/07) and it went into force on 14 September.
This year, 14 September falls on a Sunday. Make sure that your local celebration of the Feast is especially worthy of this 7th Anniversary. If nothing else, consider having the Te Deum sung at the end of Mass with the Church bells pealing!
I once heard a friend observe, astutely, that the reason the liturgical life of the Catholic Church had become so barren after the Council and before Summorum Pontificum (despite what one must honestly describe as a near mania for any conceivable innovation) was that, until then, “the new Mass had no past and the old Mass had no future.” Summorum Pontificum restored the possibility of organic development to the liturgical life of the Church by bringing the past and future together in a new present.
“But Father! But Father!” some of you are asking, “What about St. John Paul’s Ecclesia Dei adflicta? Didn’t it give the older form of Mass a future?”
At the time, it made a huge difference. But there’s no denying that it also put the future of the old Mass nearly entirely into the hands of the very people who most opposed it. In spite of the fact that the late saintly Pope commanded by his apostolic authority that bishops provide a generous application of his legislation…. they didn’t, in sheer defiance, fueled by ideological malice.
There are reasons why the older post-Ecclesia Dei communities can sometimes seem angrier than the newer post-Summorum Pontificum communities. Those earlier communities were relentlessly persecuted for their love of the Church’s traditions in a way that the new communities have not been. That takes a toll.
Wasn’t it in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles where, after Ecclesia Dei adflicta, Mass according to the 1962 Missal was grudgingly tolerated on Sundays but only — for pastoral reasons, of course! — at a different time and location every Sunday. There wasn’t even a location for 5th Sundays so that no location was repeated. Today, under Summorum Pontificum, the FSSP has been invited to establish a personal parish in LA.
In the Archdiocese of New York, after Ecclesia Dei adflicta, the first regular weekly Mass according to the 1962 Missal was only allowed on a Saturday afternoon, celebrated at a side altar. If I recall correctly, the initial congregations at these Masses were screened to admit only those old enough to remember Mass before the changes. No one under forty was admitted if not accompanied by a geriatric guardian. Today, under Summorum Pontificum, the Archdiocese of New York has (at least for now) the Church of the Holy Innocents. At Holy Innocents there are four sung Masses every week! There are Solemn Vespers and Benediction every Sunday. There are Solemn Masses every 1st and 2nd Class Feast. This is a vibrant, active, and happy community with a good liturgical and social.
That is what Summorum Pontificum sparked in New York and at dozens of other places throughout these USA.
I hope we won’t see those darker days again, but we have to be realistic and smart and watch the signs of the times.
Therefore, I circle back to my opening question, ¿Hablas español?
Is your Extraordinary Form community doing anything to reach out to the growing number of Spanish-speaking Catholics in these USA?
If yours is like most communities, I’ll bet you are doing nearly nothing.
I’ll also bet that you have been told, also as if through an organized propaganda campaign, that Spanish speaking immigrants don’t want any Latin, that it is too foreign to them, that they wouldn’t be interested, not to bother, etc.
It seems to me many these people come from places that are far more liturgically (and theologically) conservative than what they will find at any Spanish-speaking community here in these USA.
I don’t need to point out how deeply condescending so many Ordinary Form communities targeting Spanish speakers can be. Every goofy liturgical innovation, most of them hooted out long ago from even the most liberal English speaking communities), is still foisted upon our Spanish speaking brethren with a shockingly grim tenacity. They must still endure the worst music, the ugliest vestments, the most embarrassing improvisations. It has never stopped being 1977 for them. They are frozen in time.
You know the scene: The Rev. Fr. Francis X. O’Blather, SJ, who studied Spanish for a month in the Dominican Republic in the 70’s and spent six years earning his PhD. in liturgical inculturation in the 80’s, still uses balloons, crayons and crepe paper every Sunday to reveal to his “native peoples” congregation the mysteries of the his version of the Faith.
They deserve more. They deserve the patrimony which has been STOLEN from them.
Make sure that your Latin Mass community (Ordinary, Extraordinary, both) is open and welcoming to Spanish speakers.
I think that, once experienced, the Extraordinary Form will have a great appeal to them. There should be also Spanish language materials. Special attention should be given to feasts that are important in their cultures. Perhaps Father could also preach in Spanish? Even if he is of a certain age, God wants him to be also an opsimath. Omnibus omnia factus sum, right?
The new Angelus Press Spanish/Latin Missal will make it much easier for you to invite Spanish speaking Catholics to the Extraordinary Form of Mass. Buy one for yourself to loan out at Mass. If your Community cannot itself afford to buy enough copies to loan to people at Mass, you can at least buy some to sell.
Let’s now have a look at this fine new tool of the New Evangelization.
Let me try to post this as a gallery.
Some features: there are a good number of ribbons and the pages are gilt. The binding is strong and the cover is very good imitation leather. It is the same size at Latin/ English Angelus Press missal and slightly larger than Baronius.
There is good, traditional artwork.
The missal is a serious spiritual tool. There are sections for catechetical instruction about the faith, necessary prayers, morning and evening prayer, explanations of all the elements of Mass. In the back there is a Kyriale for singing the Mass and pages for you to write dates of baptisms, ordinations, religious professions, marriages, etc. The Ordinary is well laid out and the Propers have slightly larger print for Spanish than for the Latin, which is not unusual in hand missals.
To buy click HERE! $38