Over at the Fishwrap (aka National Schismatic Reporter) the “Wile E. Coyote of contemporary liberal catholicism”, Michael Sean Winters, had a nutty about Card. Sarah’s message to the Summorum Pontificum colloquium in Germany. HERE
He picked on the new ICEL translation a bit, blah blah blah, but saved his ire for Benedict XVI and Summorum Pontificum. That document that frightens the daylights out of libs.
When Pope Benedict issued Summorum Pontificum, he had no intention of starting a movement, [I think he probably did, given that he wrote a book with the same title as Romano Guadini’s Spirit of the Liturgy, and called for a “new liturgical movement.] still less of ideology. [Buzzzzzz] My problem with those who favor the traditional worship of the church is not their taste, it is that they twist that taste into an ideological framework. [Asinus asellum culpat!] Cardinal Sarah had no harsh words for the traditionalists, only for the post-conciliar reforms. He was throwing red meat to people who have become a kind of cult, who look down on those who do not share their fondness for the old rite. If the charge of “schism” is to be thrown around, it is misplaced when applied to the vast, vast majority of Catholics who follow the new rite. [This, from the National Schismatic Reporter. I remind the readers that every time they print something or serve up their webpage they issue a middle-finger at legitimate authority’s directive to stop using the title “Catholic”. Meanwhile, most people who attend the traditional form the Roman Rite also want the sound preaching that goes with it: the “cult” they belong to is the “Catholic Church”. That’s what they want.]
Worst of all, Cardinal Sarah and the traditionalists seem to be exercising a variety of secularism in that they believe God has stopped his activity in the world, that he makes himself accessible in the Tridentine rite and that rite only, and all the ills of the church flow from the fact that we have left that “golden age.” [In my experience, the vast majority of people who prefer the traditional forms don’t have that view. Most of them, who are too young to have known the time before the Council, have simply grown into the older form, or even grown up into it. Moreover, this is not a homogeneous group. Not at all.] Leave it we did, and not a moment too soon. The church was well served by Trent, liturgically, doctrinally, pastorally, but no council’s perspective lasts forever. In thinking that Trent’s rules and rites are the only legitimate ones, the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s. It can’t be done, and it is wrong to try. It is God alone who will have the last word, not the cardinal prefect.
Card. Sarah and Benedict’s Summorum Pontificum really spook these people.
And my favorite line from earlier in Wile E.’s piece:
The reform of the liturgy that began after the Second Vatican Council has been an overwhelming success.
Mass attendance in Belgium: 5%
Mass attendance in the Netherlands: 5%
Has the Novus Ordo been a huge success? Even if 100% of the 5% who still go to Mass in those places really love the Novus Ordo as it is celebrated there, has the reform been a huge success? Even in these USA, where attendance is still a little higher?
Note Wile E.’s technique. What he has done here is also what he does to the folks at Acton Institute, such as Fr. Sirico and Sam Gregg. He mischaracterizes them with a false label, “liberatarians”, and then allows no other possibility. They are all that way! That’s what he did here, too: “the traditionalists”, “cult”, “ideology”. He paints false pictures and wants the reader simply to accept them. That’s his trick. Sort of like what Wile E. does with the bungee in the following.
What really scares libs is that Card. Sarah spoke of the future.
Benedict XVI and Card. Sarah have the future in mind. Benedict XVI clearly had the future in mind when he desired to spark a New Liturgical Movement, and when he desired a “mutual enrichment” of the two forms. Because Holy Mass is at the very heart of the Church’s identity, if you change the Mass you change Catholic identity. Benedict and Card. Sarah have it exactly right and that terrifies the libs.
As Card. Sarah communicated to the colloquium:
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger tirelessly repeated that the crisis that has shaken the Church for fifty years, chiefly since Vatican Council II, is connected with the crisis of the liturgy, and therefore to the lack of respect, the desacralization and the leveling of the essential elements of divine worship. “I am convinced,” he writes, “that the crisis in the Church that we are experiencing today is to a large extent due to the disintegration of the liturgy.”
And yet it is precisely the disintegration that the libs embrace.
“the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s”? Really? From my perspective traditionalists want to find God in the infinite, in a timeless tradition that was unchanged for hundreds of years. It is the liberals who want to bind God in the 1970’s.
“the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s. It can’t be done, and it is wrong to try. It is God alone who will have the last word, not the cardinal prefect.”
At least Cardinal Sarah doesn’t wish to bind God to what was fashionable in 1970.
Based on this article, Mr Winters must then be a fervent promoter of the (real) reforms of the Second Vatican Council and the (real) Mass of Blessed Paul VI: Latin, chant, fidelity to the rubrics, reverence, incense, instituted ministers, etc.
I actually thought it was a very good article by MSW. Yes of course I disagree with his whole premise but he and the “liberals” get it when it comes to Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi. I only wish “conservatives” understood this concept too. The EF and OF cannot coexist. Like Jesus said you will either love one and hate the other. You cannot serve God and Mammon. The libs know this and will not tolerate the wide use of the TLM. How one worships is what they believe and today there are many different beliefs in the Church because there are many different ways we worship. There is a lack of unity of believe which is suppose to be a mark of the Church. The raison d’etre of the Novus Ordo is to foster this divide and usher in a new faith.
Marge Simpson, “Oh no, not Lenny”, and now “Oh no! Not an ideological framework!”
“We wants it, we needs it. Must have the precious. They stole it from us. Sneaky little traditionalists / hobbitses. Wicked, tricksy, false!”
Mr. Winters sounds like one Catholic who learned that confirmation was a graduation exercise. [I don’t agree with his view, especially on this, about which he is desperately wrong, but I don’t think your statement is fair. Read his whole piece.] It’s sad that most of us who grew up in the Church during the 80s exited the doors following high school graduation. Many of us were given poor Catechesis.
It wasn’t until I began to learn the nuts and bolts that I began a reversion story, but many baptized Catholics who are today between 40 and 60 are now either “nones” or Protestants. Why? The Catechesis was “dumbed down”, CCD was snack time, preaching was “Fr. Yeah Whatever”, and music was entertainment.
Geoffrey – Indeed Mr. Winters professes to be something of a devotee of the Mass in Latin:
“I usually attend a Novus Ordo Latin Mass at St. Matthew’s Cathedral here in Washington. My Latin is pretty good, and I can follow along. I do not need to consult the booklet to know what or when to speak the parts we in the pews say or sing.”
Perhaps some of our Washington area readers can tell us more about that Mass — as to “chant, fidelity to the rubrics, reverence, incense, instituted ministers, etc.” Ad orientem?
At any rate, he mentions that Sunday, “at St. Matthew’s Cathedral, the choir sang the [polyphonic] Kyrie from William Byrd’s ‘Mass for Four Voices’, posts a video of that Kyrie, and comments that “Those plaintive tones warm the heart to the sense of merciful pleading the Kyrie is all about, no?”
“thinking that Trent’s rules and rites are the only legitimate ones, the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s.”
More like 1550’s. And its not us binding God, it’s God binding us to His eternal truths.
At what point does one become a Traditionalist? Is it the taking of the Eucharist on the tongue that makes us so? Maybe it is not going up for communion when one is burdened by sin.
It b is curious to have ordinary piety be treated with contempt. It is all the more curious because most of the good, solid Catholic families are wed to our parishes. Nine kids and at 10:30 Mass.
Hates the music of Dan Schutte and Bob Hurd but our kids go to Catholic school through high school and we’ll be at the Chrism Mass on Holy Thursday.
Yes, I HAVE met real jerks who think that there is no merit to practice other than their own but they exist in all stripes.
There is one difference between Wile E. Coyote and Michael “oh-see-how-cool-and-Roman-I-sound-by-using-my-middle-name” Winters:
Wile E. makes me laugh and I’m happy to see him get up again for another go.
Maybe that’s two differences.
I go to the Novus Ordo (pretty much the only one available in my area). But I pray for the restoration of the Roman Rite and ad orientem worship. A young woman in her 20’s told me that when she went to the TLM for the first time, she realized what the Mass really is! She had no axe to grind about the 1950’s, etc. It was the power of the liturgy. That’s awesome!
I go to a TLM about twice a month, NO otherwise, for daily Mass as well. Our NO parish is even tastefully appointed, with the three archangels in marble holding the altar on their shoulders. And still. Still. The way the NO is celebrated there usually shows it’s a (valid) Liturgy for…kids. However, that’s not fair to children. To 70s retreads? Yes.
“Worst of all, Cardinal Sarah and the traditionalists seem to be exercising a variety of secularism in that they believe God has stopped his activity in the world, that he makes himself accessible in the Tridentine rite and that rite only, and all the ills of the church flow from the fact that we have left that “golden age.”
It was bad enough through the post up to this point, but this is where I really nearly lost my dinner. I am so tired of this.
People who want to hear Catholic teaching as the Catechism and 2000 years of Magisterial teaching, countless saints, faithful priests, religious, and laity have heard through those years are somehow, now, in AD 2017, a problem? How? What happened to the Catholic faith that suddenly what was taught in 1950, 1750, 1550, 1350, 1150, 950, 750, 550, 350, 150 is no longer that faith, but something that is so wrong that it can’t even be spoken of except to reject it?
Who are the rigid ones? Who are the ones who are really insisting, “Worship MY way or the highway?” It is NOT those who seek to worship Christ in the E.F. And it is not to a great degree those who seek to worship Christ in the O.F. (believe me, after more than 3 years in a parish where the priest ad libs the Mass from start to finish, I would welcome a ‘real’ O.F. Mass with tears of joy).
The rigid and coercive people are the ones (and they seem to be mostly those who favor an O.F. form of some type by definition) who are not content that they worship as they please, but must have everyone else worshipping them and their way. And they are IMO projecting a lot of what they themselves are guilty of onto people they label as ‘traditional’. Let’s get real here. In the U.S. there are how many parishes where the E.F. is celebrated as opposed to how many where the O.F. is celebrated? And yet somehow we’re supposed to be terrified that those ‘radicals’ who like the E.F. are somehow going to take over and force everybody to worship in THEIR way? And they’ll somehow turn Christianity ‘back into’ what it was before we became enlightened enough to believe in just about everything BUT that Christianity?
I wish it could be done, and with the exception of those gridlock lobbies I don’t think any force would be necessary. The average modern Catholic who is exposed to ‘those old things’ in an atmosphere outside MSW’s fainting couch would either actually LIKE them, or at worst, be indifferent “It’s not my thing, man, but whatever”. . . It’s only those who know deep down in their souls that their ‘new way’ is not just ‘Catholicism 2, modern and abridged” but that they are USING what they call Catholicism to advocate and advance ideas that are anything but, who are the ones causing the big stink here. God help them.
“In thinking that Trent’s rules and rites are the only legitimate ones, the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s”
Does Sean Michael Winters not know when the Council of Trent was?
“The reform of the liturgy that began after the Second Vatican Council has been an overwhelming success.”
Was its purpose to empty the parish churches of their parishioners and evacuate the faith of its content?
” in that they believe God has stopped his activity in the world,” hmmm. I think he’s got this wrong, too. If the “spirit” is moving, it must be the Spirit of God…. and since God is both unchanging and unchangeable…..
Quoting Mr. Winters and Father Z’s response
Maybe it’s worth emphasizing what that view is, because it’s pretty extreme. “He makes Himself accessible in the Tridentine Rite only” is basically a claim that the sacraments are invalid in the Novus Ordo.
He seems to be accusing Cardinal Sarah and effectively all traditionalists of being sedevacantists or holding practically equivalent beliefs. Honestly, I have yet to meet a sedevacantist in real life. With Cardinal Sarah’s focus on mutual enrichment and refusal “to pit one liturgy against the other,” as you highlighted in the podcast, clearly he himself accepts the novus ordo, even if he has numerous criticisms for how it has been implemented and taught.
That Mass is highly attended by a certain community that is not necessarily always -so to say – orthodox.
St Matt’s is right by Dupont Circle and all that comes with that.
It is a very pretty Mass, not ad orientem, but often with polyphony. The
Parishioners span the entire spectrum.
I should think that Fishwrap’s position would be better served if they had someone of Cardinal Sarah’s level of qualifications, by which I mean not only his years of service to the Church pastorally and his study, but also as a man of simplicity and silence, and deep reflection, and several other aspects of his lived out vocation which have called him to the ends of the earth in communion. I do not mean to say that this columnist lacks any qualifications, that is hardly the case, but I think it is not really a fair match up to put him against Cardinal Sarah.
Which I think leads to the kind of reportage and coverage in most secular media generally, which the Obama administration perfected as a political art (and this columnist was a part and parcel of that in the first election cycle), and now is kind of raging as a great toddler meltdown which cannot look inward and examine the real faults and failures that led to a media that denied what was speaking to people’s hearts this last election round — and that is the Alinsky freezing a target and calumnizing and harshing on them in so many and varied and humiliating, intimidating ways.
Piece after piece zooms in on one person to deconstruct by harsh and even deceptive “analysis”, faux, under the guise of “opinion” to make a loathsome caricature which the intended audience can unite in their hatred around and expend and air and vent their collected and varied angers upon and gather steam. It has its legs, and then, it eventually fails. It is not a lasting effective approach in activism, and I think that many people, even people who go in for that sort of thing, are tired of it and increasingly tune it out. In response, its authors and architects wear themselves out with more vicious targeting of selected targets, which seems to bode the general as the kids would say of yore, shark jumping of this whole phenomena as a means of political agenda advancement.
Even a middle school student of logic can easily pluck out the fallacy upon fallacy he introduces. One wonders how any literate audience could have the patience to read it without the prerequisite Outrage and Loathsome and Indignation Against Sarah and These Traditionalists Who Are Aptly Named Outed and Harshed Upon. In Passiontide. If you have no hatred towards your co religionists, I guess you just sigh and turn the page? Or, eventually you just use it to wrap the proverbial fish.
Anyway it’s true he totally buries his point which is that this very era is the one by which we ought to model all after. Or, he has a better idea for liturgy which is yet to be hatched? It’s hard to tell the point other than that all everywhere must hate these vile Traditionalists, call them that I tell you!
It’s pretty bizarre for anyone to attack Cardinal Sarah, truly. I mean, whaaaat? He’s an angel of a man who cares for us all deeply. But, they did the same to Cardinal Burke, I suppose they think that just because most normal people have given up on Alinsky tactics that certain quarters may yet want to have another soul destroying go round, even in our beloved Church…?
Probably also, in reactionary fashion, if a great deal of the Catholic world at present is reading Cardinal Sarah’s excellent books (and one hopes, meditating on his words), and even our esteemed blogger herein, the Fishwrap board then predictably shouts “Get him!” and we’re then all off to the races betting on the horse named Alinsky.
“seek to bind God in the 1950s”… the 1950s? Naw…i seek to bind God in the 1450s or maybe the 1350s.
A “vast, vast majority.” Because that’s so much vaster than a “vast majority.”
Card. Sarah for Pope
“no council’s perspective lasts forever” . . . Does he even realize the foot inserting into his mouth with this statement?
We don’t think God has stopped his activity in the world. That is demonstrated by liberals, stuck in the 1970s. They tried to make Mass “relevant” yet it is trapped like a fly in amber. Replete with guitars, bell bottoms and mullet haircuts
The article perpetuates a misunderstanding of what the Council of Trent did with the liturgy. It did not codify a rite out of whole cloth in the same way that the Consilium of the 1960’s did with the Mass of Paul VI. Instead it just cleaned up what had already existed for at least 1000 years before, eliminating some variations other than those local customs that had longevity such as the Ambrosian Rite. This is important because Trent was merely passing on the Tradition that had been handed down to it, much the same way that “traditionalists” are trying to do today through the Extraordinary Form.
So MSW admits that Councils can be appropriate for specific times. Can we also then say that Vatican II is dated and not really applicable for modern circumstances?
I hate to agree with MSW, but while he is wrong and sleazy to stereotype, he didn’t invent the stereotype out of thin air. There are people who use the TLM as an ideological club. This wouldn’t be so bad except in my experience of the EF, the ideological clubber was the loudest and shrillest voice in the parish. I understood where he was coming from–Vatican II came along and overturned his applecart. As far as he was concerned, the Mass was stolen from him. In a way he is right. BUT what wasn’t right was his perpetual resentment as he harrangued the poor OF pastor, browbeat the FSSP priests for not recreating the TLM excactly as he remembered it in 1950-whatever, and lambasted the choir director for actually using chant instead of limiting the music selections to Salve Regina and a handful of schmaltzy hymns that were just as inappropriate in the 1870s as the folk ditties from the 1970s are in the typical OF parish in Anywhere, USA.
The OF pastor could have pulled the plug on the EF any time he wanted and saved himself a lot of headache. Why didn’t he? Because he was a good soul who understood that a handful of shrill voices weren’t the norm.
I say all this as a warning to anyone trying to get an EF Mass going in their area. You will get resistance from the Always-Micheal-Sean-Winters-Never-Christmas types, but you already knew that. What you also need to be ready for are the perpetually resentful on the traditionalist side because they can burn the project down as easily as the EpiscoPresbyLutherans in the parish.
And ever again ad nauseam the background singing: “Do not wish yourselves back to the 1950s.”
People who in their heart of hearts really believed that our times are better than the 1950s would not do that, I assume.
People who really believed that to be modern – whether it is an “as far as not contrary to the Faith modern” or an “even contrary to the Faith modern” – would be a liberation and a beautiful thing, such people would not constantly moralize against the many, many people who don’t.
Scott W., that’s correct but becoming increasingly exceptional, or will be. To associate Cardinal Sarah with that phenomenon in order to write a hit piece for an anti Catholic agitating publication is obviously patently preposterous and intellectually and spiritually deceitful. But your points are very well taken aside from that. We know that MSW doesn’t give a fig about building up parishes or Catholic spirituality in the way you describe where a parish needs to get behind a good for everyone’s well being and the future of the Church. Whereas people in parish settings need to be generous and clear about what needs to happen in order for everyone to move forward. It’s bizarre to characterize someone like Cardinal Sarah as this sort of “Evil Traditionalist” (if they exist indeed much at all beyond the limited situations you describe). What MSW wants to happen is for that sort of thing to become the public face of the TLM. That in and of itself is sad and obviously another desperation move. But obviously his publication and whatever readership remains is into it to some extent for the time being.
I think that it’s fine for us to at this point after all has been said and done, call this for what it is. The dissent in the Church, the American Church and their European elitist associates is founded upon one principle and one principle only, though it masquerades and parades and pickets and obstructs under a great many guises. And that is the so called right to eliminate and slaughter a child in the womb, at all costs, by any means necessary, now and forevermore, the more the better, for profit, commercial gain and the dogma of women which has little to do with women’s rights, health, well being or dignity. The reason for this is well undisclosed but we can all guess and we see it in other manifestations in Church related situations and developments. This is the sole reason for the hating on other members of the Body of Christ. This is the sole reason for targeting the Latin Mass and all who may speak well of it or hold it dear, even if African, poor, simple, charitable, prayerful. I have listened to the supposed “dialogues” (if any), the pretense, the posturing, the buts, the we must have, and the rationales, and the ad nauseum and the not at all credible denials in the face of so much overwhelming evidence. And it can all be flushed in the same direction, it doesn’t add up to a hill of beans, it’s not worth listening to anymore as there is no there there. It is the culture of death. For real. That’s why they hate on so viciously and commitedly and without shame and at any cost and with the price of all sorts of horrible things that should never go on in our communion. That is it folks. It all boils back down to the truth. I don’t care how many times they might pretend to be Catholic or with the teachings with limitations or objections or putting the Alinsky politics before the communion and real people and all. Don’t listen anymore. We get it. Message heard loud and clear. Might as well get on with working to the good anyway. In fact, work to it, all the more, when you hear this sort of nonsense. Commit yourself, right then and there, and say an Act of Faith for them.
“In thinking that Trent’s rules and rites are the only legitimate ones, the traditionalists seek to bind God in the 1950s.”
Funny. All this time I thought Trent was in the 1550s, not the 1950s. Who knew?
Seriously, though, what is it with liberals’ fixation on and hatred of the 1950s? It’s like a profane slur to them.
At least Cardinal Sarah wasn’t venomous.
I actually pity MSW and those like him. I have often hear the “Jesus in a Box” comment from Liberals. Few who comment like this have ever attended the older form of the Mass with an open heart. It is people like MSW who tore out high altars, statues, and burned and buried relics and reliquaries. They say they are concerned with people and worship, but they really aren’t. They are concerned only with their ideological agenda. They fail to see that the very thing they accuse others of doing (rigidity) is what they do in actuality (We stand, we don’t kneel here. Please don’t trip others by kneeling for the consecration…etc….). I have to pity these people for their lack of understanding, and the obtuse way they fail to allow others to encounter Christ in meaningful way. They never cared about people at all. They continue not to care about people.
It’s all about the use of the Alinsky Method, within the Church, not merely for ideological, uncompromising, merciless dogmas which hurt attack and harm fellow Catholics but also writ large on innocent populus.
If I’m wrong, then, hey, why can’t we talk about it in the light of day in dialogue and transparency? Because we can’t. We can never do that. We can only receive threats, intimidations and harassments and humiliations for the supposed reason we like to worship and pray in one way or another and that is supposed to somehow be strangely satisfying to those who question things though devoid of reason and reasonableness.
Like, for instance, when HRC went from “abortion should be safe, legal and rare” and Obama saying we can work with pro life, to, extremist full on include the sale of parts and envision infanticide for any and no reason kind of a thing, at all costs, and with public fisc supporting it, and to heck with consciences, like, what is the public record on any development of the platform there? Policy wise. I mean, it should be publicly reviewable and discussed, no? No. It’s all a big secret. And, there was never any groundswell of support so it’s all weird and faux. But you’ve got the Fishwrap hammering away for what amounts to precisely and only that. Forevermore.
Look, for all MSW et al’s howling against the looming traditions, the fact remains that it’s easier for a supposed schismatic, Latin Mass, VII doubting St. Pius X’er to reconcile with Pope Francis than it is for this crew to mortify themselves of their addictions to the big commercial business of death in all forms and especially and most hoped after for them in the Church.
So what gives. Women really aren’t begging for that. I suspect the animators of that supposed “policy” are more in the area of certain moneyed, elite, male interests who seem very well let’s say traditional and certainly entitled. But no one can talk about it so I’m sure the Fishwrap fact checkers, if they ever get around to getting back to work, will show mercy towards me and let that slide for letting my imagination run away with me. After all I’m just a little lady with no credentials. What do I know?
The reform of the liturgy that began after the Second Vatican Council has been an overwhelming success. [Pure fantasy.]
Obviously, Winters does not quite grok that the fact that a Pope was able to impose a new rite on the Latin Church in the most ultramontane age in the Church’s history doesn’t automatically qualify it as an “overwhelming success.”
Where else were laity supposed to go if they didn’t like it? Perhaps indeed those collapses in attendance in the Low Countries cited by our kind host suggests where many did NOT go – to Mass. Maybe there were other factors. But such catastrophic data coinciding perfectly with the imposition of the Pauline missal might be grounds for some epistemological humility. Or even some minimal attempt to at least account for it.
Likewise, where were clergy supposed to go, if their bishops were unwilling to resist? More resisted than some people realize. Cardinal Sheehan of Baltimore forcefully retired some 40 or so of his pastors in 1969-70 for reluctance to embrace his desired liturgical reforms.
” but no council’s perspective lasts forever.” Vatican 2 was called over half a century ago to present the Church to the “modern world”. That world is now history and largely irrelevant to us today. So are large parts of V2. Time to move on from it and its insights.
By the way,
and a handful of schmaltzy hymns that were just as inappropriate in the 1870s as the folk ditties from the 1970s are in the typical OF parish in Anywhere, USA.
I’d deny the “inappropriate” for the former and the “just as”. (I will not deny that chant, where possible, should play the chief role.)
A little schmalz does nobody any harm, especially outside Lent.
It would be most interesting to know who is financing the Reporter’s activity. Its circulation obviously can not support the financial costs nor can the meager donations it receives from its fans. Since it is privately incorporated, there are no public records of its income so I suppose we shall never know. It is some small comfort to know that the investment is probably as smart as those who invested in Dutch tulips.