Another reaction at NLM.
Be sure to read a response posted at CWR by a priest who wrote his thesis on Universae Ecclesiae. HERE
___ Originally Published on: Feb 8, 2017 ___
When I was around the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei“, in its early days, I had the opportunity fairly frequently to chat with the Prefect of the CDF (our offices were in the same building and our Cardinal and that Cardinal were friends). Card. Ratzinger had ideas about the organic development of liturgical worship which touched on the interplay of the older form of the Roman Rite and the Novus Ordo. Even then he wrote and spoke, though not always in the more current phrase, of a “mutual enrichment” of the rites. Ratzinger held – correctly – that there was a rupture in our worship through the imposition on the Church of an artificially cobbled-up “new order” of Mass. That rupture must be healed. That will take time. He thought it would be beneficial to have wide-spread (with the Novus Ordo) celebrations of Holy Mass using also the pre-Conciliar form. The contact of the two rites would jump-start the slow, organic development of worship which had been so harmfully interrupted.
Back in the day, I think that Ratzinger believed that logical priority in the mutual enrichment should be with the Novus Ordo. However, as time passed I had the impression that he shifted to the view that logical priority should be given to the older, traditional form. That’s my impression from our conversations.
In Summorum Pontificum he was able to issue legislation for the universal Church that would, inter alia, effect that contact and that mutual enrichment. Benedict’s Motu Proprio effected a juridical solution. It did not solve or resolve the other questions, for example, is the Novus Ordo really in continuity with the traditional Roman Rite? That is a matter for historians and theologians and liturgists. Summorum Pontificum made an elegant juridical determination: For juridical purposes the two rites are the same and, hence, if a priest has faculties to say Mass, he can use either Missal. Other questions remain.
The above serves to set up the following.
Fr. John Hunwicke has written at his blog Mutual Enrichment (sound familiar?) his brief comments on a proposal made by Fr. Peter Stravinskas at Catholic World Report about how the Novus Ordo, the Ordinary Form, should change the traditional, Extraordinary Form. At the time it came out, I simply shook my head and moved on. I disagreed with virtually everything he wrote and I wasn’t going to waste my time on it.
Fr. Hunwicke, on the other hand, did offer some reactions. Here are a few of his points:
Enriching the EF
I am afraid that there is an immensely silly article in the CWR by a Fr Peter Stravinskas. He asks how the Ordinary Form could enrich the Extraordinary Form. [NB: no “mutual” involved. It’s one way.]
The problem with his piece is that he goes on and on … and on … and on … having yet more bright ideas. One thing leads to another. You start off considering his ideas … but by the time he has finished with you he is proposing a completely new rite.
More to the point, and most disturbingly, he is apparently unaware of a large amount of work, academically, which has been done in the last twenty or so years. The 1960s changes were based on shabby and shallow scholarship. The last thing we want to do to the EF now is to make precisely the same blunder!
“The riches of prayers in the OF should be brought into the EF.” BUT it has been demonstrated that even where OF prayers have a pedigree in the old Sacramentaries, their selection and their conceptual bowdlerisation in the OF has made them very suspect.
“The OF Lectionaries should be brought into the EF.” BUT it has been demonstrated that, although the OF gives more Bible, it goes easy on certain Biblical themes, and so in fact it is something of an impoverishment; a censorship of Holy Scripture.
“The OF Calendar should be brought into the EF … for example, by shifting Christ the King to November.” BUT the (Evangelical Anglican) Bishop NT Wright has demonstrated what a very flawed move that was.
Fr Stravinskas’s proposed massive revision of the EF would provide a sort of intermediate use between the EF and the OF. His desires would much more easily be achieved by authorising certain optional changes in the OF … [In other words, give logical priority to the older, traditional form. Duh. Right?] for example, the silent Canon, disuse of the Acclamations after the Consecration, the restoration of the historical Roman Words of Consecration, and the authorisation of the old Offertory Prayers of the celebrant. These would all be a good thing, and could be done very simply by a decree which need hardly occupy more than one sheet of paper.
I’m with Ratzinger and Hunwicke in this. Also, Fr. H mentions some things that can be done with the Extraordinary Form (e.g., introduce some more recently canonized saints to the calendar – today, for example, is the Feast of St. Josephine Bakhita, a marvelous saint who could be included in the older form’s calendar). The changes Hunwicke would admit are discrete and would in no way affect the integrity of the Rite.
We need a period of long stability of the use of the older Rite, side by side, with the newer. Stability.
There is nothing to be afraid of, by the way. Let the two forms be offered side-by-side on an even field of play. Let market forces work. If, as some think, the Novus Ordo is so very superior to the traditional form, then people will choose to go to the Novus Ordo. Right? But let the playing field be even. If the Extraordinary Form is relegated to 7 AM or 2 PM every time a 5th Sunday in a month occurs… that’s not a level playing field. However, libs are terrified of the older, traditional form. And because libs view the world and the Church through the lens of the zero sum game, they use brutal power to suppress whatever (whomever!) competes with their progressivist notions.
Again, on the note of stability, some people inadvertently – alas! – allow Novus Ordo tinkeritis to take root in them. Tinkeritis seems to be part and parcel of the Ordinary Form: don’t just let the rite be! Provide option after option. The effect is that the rite is ever fluid, always malleable, conformable to our desire and imagination. Over decades the results have been disastrous for Catholic identity.
We need more and more celebrations of the older, traditional Roman Rite. We need a period of stability. It takes longer to build than it takes to demolish.
Brick by brick on a stable foundation.
The moderation queue is ON.
At NLM Peter Kwasniewski systematically demolishes the 14 Theses which Fr. Stravinskas nailed to CWR.
At CWR there is another response to Fr. Stravinskas’ ideas. HERE Fr. Albert P. Marcello, III gets to the core:
It would seem that if this entire article were to be put into practice, then the EF would not merely be “enriched by” the OF, but with a few minor exceptions, it would in fact become the OF.