#PreSynod #Synod2018 Young People document rigged against requests for traditional worship?

The Chant Cafe has a fascinating note from the “preparatory” young people pre-Synod confab.

Is the Vatican listening to young people?
by Kathleen Pluth

A member of the preparatory commission reflects:

On the journey, I checked in with the online community in the Pre-Synod English group and discovered a very different dialogue going on to the one present to us. [NB] There was a huge online community asking for the Extraordinary Form to be represented in the document, and I realised going through these comments that we as a writing team had not been shown the wealth of online commenting. [NB] We were given only a summary of these comments, and so I was saddened to see that many in this group felt disheartened or not listened to. I had turned to my Lebanese and Latin American editing colleagues and had asked them if the phrases ‘Extraordinary Form’ or even ‘Latin mass’ translated for them. They both said that they did not know what I meant, so I included the phrase, ‘reverential liturgies’ hoping to express those things, but looking online, I really saw that the document would have been different had the online world been represented properly.

¡Hagan lío!

The document … HERE

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. GypsyMom says:

    Dog and pony show. These are ALWAYS dog and pony shows. The desired outcomes are predetermined, and any input that doesn’t fit with the agenda is thrown down the memory hole. The goal is manipulation of the narrative to (mostly) outsiders. If comments from tradition-minded youth don’t appear, it can only be because they were discarded, as the tradition-minded are the only significant demographic of young people still practicing the Faith!

  2. TonyO says:

    Dog and pony show. These are ALWAYS dog and pony shows.

    That’s what I was going to say – only you said it better. Thanks.

    as the tradition-minded are the only significant demographic of young people still practicing the Faith!

    Well, “only” may be a slight exaggeration, but it’s not far off. And if the demographic were “young people still practicing their faith 7 years after college age…” it might be entirely true.

  3. David says:

    And if I recall correctly Pope Benedict said in “Summorum Pontificum” that he had observed a marked interest among young people (I can add from my experience in a college, especially among young men) in the old rite. This Synod will clearly be rigged to produce the teen version of the Vatican’s left wing advisors. How can such a Synod manage to avoid inviting the single most influential teacher of the Catholic Faith to youth today, Fr. Mike Schmitz, whose comment boxes are full of literally thousands of messages from young people all around the globe he has brought into or back to the Church. But his theology is 110% orthodox, and that simply will not due for the purposes of today’s Vatican.

  4. Sawyer says:

    @ GypsyMom, read about the Delphi method and how it can be manipulated to give the illusion of consensus while steering input to a predetermined outcome.

  5. ServusChristi says:

    I think the same thing is happening here as was the case in Amoris Laetitia. We seem to only hear the uncatechized and progressive youth whilst the traditional youth don’t get their voices through. I’ve heard from witnesses from these ‘Facebook groups’ who asked for a return to the Tridentine mass.

  6. billy15 says:

    A bishop I’m acquainted with has said before that there are two types of young Catholics today. To paraphrase, the first type are those young people that have an authentic love for Christ’s Church. They remain true to the doctrines and teachings of the Church, especially to things such as pro-life activities and what God’s intention for human sexuality is. They also have a great appreciation for the traditions of the Latin Rite particularly in the Sacred Liturgy, and have a great devotion to the Eucharist. They are, however, not a majority.

    The second type of young Catholic is the larger group. These Catholics may or may not go to Mass on Sundays, are less engaged in the going-ons of parish life, have more of a cultural affiliation with the Church (particularly through weddings, funerals, or baptisms), put great emphasis on the Church’s social justice doctrine and love to help the poor, and don’t put as much emphasis on other teachings of the Church.

    I know as a young person I took the survey on the Vatican’s website, but anyone could’ve taken it. It was even billed as a young person being someone going up through 40 years of age. I just wonder which voice will be heard in the end. I wonder if this member of the preparatory committee got to see my comments.

  7. Kathleen10 says:

    I can’t say it better than GypsyMom did.
    How easily people are fooled. It’s quite astounding that anyone believes anything coming from these people.

  8. Fern says:

    I read the “very” long document. It was difficult to tell who was talking. Was it the youth, the leaders or the Church? It reminded me of the group think youth marching. One doesn’t ask children what they think about rules! One doesn’t ask youth who have not been taught the Faith what they think about it! What a waste of time, money and effort!!!

  9. Andrew says:

    From the said document (only 13 pages long):

    12. Young Leaders:
    The Church must involve young people in its decision-making processes and offer them more leadership roles. [] Beyond institutional decision-making, we want to be a joyful, enthusiastic and missionary presence within the Church. We also strongly express a wish for a prominent creative voice. This creativity often finds itself in music, liturgy and the arts but, at the moment, this is an untapped potential, with the creative side of the Church often dominated by the older Church members.

  10. The Egyptian says:

    Well all the church needs is more MODERN HIP HAPPY CLAPPY CRAP. has worked out fell so far

    What do we expect, this is the last gasp of the HIP generation, locally I see the last remnants of the Sister of the Precious Blood trolling for fresh bodies , They just try and try to appeal to the young by being more hip than ever, as they slowly slip into oblivion. They have now turned the control of the shrine of the holy relics (second largest collection of relics in the USA) over to a lay management group with plans to sell it to them. They have said there seems to be no future for religious orders to take it over. However I am informed that they never tried, just stubbornly proceed to their demise, the biological solution. Would be beautiful place for a growing traditional order. Oddly it seems that every since they changed their chrism? after V2 from perpetual adoration to teaching they have gone down hill

  11. robert hightower says:

    Good point.

  12. FrAnt says:

    I hear pope Francis told young people to shout and let their voices be heard. Supporters of the Extraordinary Form should take him up on his suggestion.

  13. Malta says:

    It’s ironic, but young people relish the beauty of the Traditional Latin Mass–its transcendent beauty and meaning, even if they don’t know Latin. I think of, for instance, most of the greatest music the world has ever heard was written for the TLM: from Palestrina, to Mozart, Haydn and even a Leonard Bernstein mass (source: https://leonardbernstein.com/works/view/12/mass-a-theatre-piece-for-singers-players-and-dancers) It was all written for the TLM. The new mass has no musicality–except banjos, if one is into banjos and tango dancers at mass. But kids are in many ways smarter than us adults, and they yearn for beauty and transcendence.

  14. TimFinnegan says:

    That document was absolutely painful to read; I couldn’t get through the whole thing. However I do have a suggestion for those who say they want the Church to uphold the dignity of women (though I’m not sure they’re going to like it): increase awareness of the vocation to consecrated virginity. The Church has been blessed by many such women in the past, and I dare say we very much need them now.

  15. Elizabeth D says:

    The quote in the synod prep document itself refers to “reverential traditional liturgies” in the context of talking about varying ways that young people like to pray: “Some of us have a passion for “the fire” of contemporary and charismatic movements that focus on the Holy Spirit; others are drawn towards silence, meditation and reverential traditional liturgies. All of these things are good as they help us to pray in different ways. ” That is still vague when the intent of the online commenters was specifically about the Extraordinary Form, and presumably for reasons that go beyond a temperament for quiet and interior prayer, but it does suggest the EF more strongly than simply “reverential liturgies” does. It falls way short of actually representing what traditional type youth would want to express. I wonder has the document been changed to beneficially add the word “traditional” or was it just quoted slightly inaccurately above?

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  17. Moro says:

    With regards to the Traditional Liturgy, I have to be a contrarian. As much as I would love to see the TLM be the norm, the interest in the TLM by anyone, let alone youth and young adults is almost entirely an Anglo-Saxon phenomenon. world with strong numbers in countries with a substantial protestant presence (i.e. Germany). France is a notable exception, due to the influence of Abp. Lefverbe. I think there are still more TLMs said in London on a given Sunday than in the entire Iberian Peninsula (Spain, Portugal, Andorra, Gibraltar). The TLM I went to in Barcelona was lucky if it got 30+ people. So if you look at it globally, no it is not an issue for all the Catholic youth of the world.

    That’s not to say some aspects are not rigged or intentionally dismissed, but who knows. At the end of the day, the only thing we can do is what is in front of us: raise our kids well, get involved in our local parish and help (CCD, music, serving, KofC, etc.), work hard to become saints and help our friends, family, and acquaintances do the same.

  18. Elizabeth D says:

    To Fr Tim Finnegan: I think those who talk about promoting consecrated virginity often do not reflect on what it means to women formed and harmed by the sexual revolution. Virginity, taken literally, is not something that a sexually damaged person can aspire to, and can seem to signify that their personal value has been irretrievably damaged, especially in relation to marriage and even, mysteriously, being consecrated to God. It has often amazed me how many devout people do not imagine (or dismiss) that this subject of virginity can cause many women to conclude “it’s too late for me”. Bear with me here.

    I have a theory that consecrated virginity in the early Church was partly a response to practices such as pagan temple prostitution of virgins, surely one of satan’s favorite things ever in history, which one might think of as a sacrifice of women to demons. Christian consecration of virgins was a Godly and pro-woman way of “sacrifice” of women. This duel of ways of sacrificing women seemingly did not go well for the demons since temple prostitution ceased to exist. Consecrated virginity was subsumed into religious life. The Church is the one Bride of Christ and it’s really not just virgins who are brides in the Bride but all Christians are. Making a distinction between which chaste, never-married women wholly dedicated to Jesus in the secular life of the parish are virgins or not (and can be held to be loved by Christ as brides on that basis) is not always without pain for women who repent of sins, because the flipside of the categorization of women according to virginity in this way can be the ontological association of unmarried penitent women with past sins they now hate, which for a sensitive person can be profoundly and lastingly humiliating and anxiety-provoking even when no one is trying to be mean to them. Again, bear with me. This brings out the aspect of ANY fornication as a sort of sacrifice of women to demons, since it is in hell that our sins are remembered forever and continue to define and harm us. The re-valuation of sinners, the true redemption of sinners, “not partly but wholly clothed in beauty and dignity” (ie Charity and virtue) in the words of St John of the Cross, needs to be the business of the Church. In the Church, it really has to be clear that at the Cross sinners regain their worth, that even poor Magdalene is the bride made clean by the blood of the Lamb. The witness that Jesus is truly able to restore sinners to purity and virtue, to holiness, to being His trusty friends, is so essential that the post-Resurrection penitential consecrated life of Mary Magdalene and of women today who have been similarly healed, taught and befriended by Jesus should also be held sacred in the Church. Meanwhile, the sacrifice of women to demons (so to speak) continues and I would like to see the Church confront that more boldly. Both those means of the lives of virgins and the lives of those penitents who have been truly made clean by the blood of the Lamb are a confrontation of those evils.

    When the CV vocation is seen as being about celebrating the greater value of people who haven’t sinned in the first place, who haven’t experienced that grievous harm, who have their full personal value radiantly undamaged, that is not the most helpful thing for the other inmates of the “field hospital” who have been harmed. “But that’s not the intention” you may say. I suspect the CV vocation has always been significant to male chastity. How women perceive it can be more variable.

  19. Elizabeth D says:

    I really wish Tim Finnegan to think carefully about what he is saying “those who say they want the Church to uphold the dignity of women (though I’m not sure they’re going to like it)” since he’s apparently acknowledging that he even knows that women suffer from being categorized as to whether they are virgins or not.

  20. Malta says:

    Moro–I completely understand what you are saying. My former girlfriend (actually, we may still be together–but she needs some breathing room right now) lives in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The Tradition Latin Mass was as foreign to her as Mandarin Chinese is to me. I took her to the TLM in El Paso–both FSSP and FSSPX. It takes time to reacquaint our orientation to the liturgy of all time. But when I took her to the FSSPX mass she put on a veil and was beginning to understand the significance. In nominally Catholic France only around 2% of the population goes to mass. I have written of the effects of Vatican II here: http://www.newoxfordreview.org/article.jsp?did=0107-conlee

    But with all due respect I don’t think the TLM should be seen as an “Anglo-Saxon phenomenon.” I have a relic–an original piece of his clothing–or the martyr Blessed Miguel Pro (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguel_Pro) I pointed out the fact to my girlfriend that he only said the TLM.

  21. TimFinnegan says:

    Elizabeth D:

    First, I am not Father Tim Finigan, Tim Finnegan is my screen name based on the Irish folk somg Finnegan’s Wake (if Father Z would like me to change my screen name here to avoid confusion I will gladly do so).

    To your other points: It is too late for those who have sexual sin in their past to become consecrated virgins; sin has consequences, sometimes even unalterable ones. It doesn’t mean that they can’t have a very intimate relationship with Christ, but it does mean that they will not be able to be Brides of Christ in that particular way. Saying that because some people, even the genuinely converted, can’t aspire to consecrated virginity so we should just stop talking about it or promoting it is I think insulting to those women who have made or would like to make the sacrifice of consecrating themselves in perpetual virginity for Christ.

    Also the religious life is inherently different than consecrated virginity; one doesn’t have to be a virgin to join a religious order. There are also plenty of women saints with sexually sinful pasts from whom other women can draw inspiration: St Mary of Egypt, for example. But the fact of the matter is that the consecrated virginity is a holy and noble vocation which upholds the dignity of women in a special way. That some are not able to aspire to it should in no way keep us from promoting it as a good and holy practice to those that are able to aspire to it.

  22. khouri says:

    Have the young people of the Eastern Churches even been included? If they have I can’t tell. The the TLM young people need to be heard and so do the young people of the, granted, small, but important representatives of the Christian East. This should include not only experience of their Liturgies, but also the spiritual life and expression of the Tradition in their Churches. Though, in reality, the Eastern Churches are often forgotten and seen as neither truly Catholic or Orthodox by both Catholics and Orthodox.

  23. johnnys says:

    It seems the ‘Young People’s Document is also rigged against certain teachings of Jesus.

  24. scotus says:

    When a document comes, in what ever way, from the Vatican these days and states “It is neither to compose a theological treatise, nor is it to establish new Church teaching” you know that it is very possible that the latter purpose is definitely on the agenda.
    Also when it complains of ‘excessive moralism’ and ‘perceived standards’ you know that whoever wrote it is looking over their shoulder to another Vatican document with a forgotten footnote.

  25. scotus says:

    Later on in the documemt it states:
    “There is often great disagreement among young people, both within the Church and in the wider world, about some of her teachings which are especially controversial today. Examples of these include: contraception, abortion, homosexuality, cohabitation, marriage, and how the priesthood is perceived in different realities in the Church. What is important to note is that irrespective of their level of understanding of Church teaching, there is still disagreement and ongoing discussion among young people on these polemical issues. As a result, they may want the Church to change her teaching…”
    So there you have it. “They may want the Church to change her teaching..” It’s no longer hidden or presented ambiguously. It’s there loud and clear. The subtext: If we are to respond to the voices of young people the Church may have to change its teaching.” Note where the direction comes from: not from God but from what is presented as the wishes of young people.

  26. YoungLatinMassGuy says:

    Moses and his generation worshiped the golden calf, and had lost the Faith.

    It took 40 years for them to wander in the desert. Wandering in the desert was NOT a punishment from God. It was God Protecting His Chosen people.

    Moses, and the Elders of Israel didn’t have the faith, how were they expected to take on the Canaanites who sacrificed their own children to Baal? They didn’t have the Faith, nor the confidence that comes with the Faith, to take on evil, and God knew it, so like any Good Parent, God protected His Children.

    The Israelites had to wait for a new generation, Joshua’s generation, who had the Faith, to rise up, and take on the evil of the world.

    I think we today are in a similar position.

    God is probably thinking: “You worship the golden calves of the day: Global warming, illegal immigration, refugees and gun control… You think you’re ready to take on people who slaughter babies? No! You’re going to wander in the desert for 40 years with clown masses for your own good!”

    Moses – Baby Boomers.
    The Elders of Israel – Gen Xers.
    Joshua’s Generation – Millenials.

    Moses’s generation and the Elders of the Israelites were probably just as shocked at the audacity of Joshua and his followers as the Baby Boomers and the GenXers are at what’s going on with us Millenials.

    From this one Millennial to all you “old folks” We’re coming.

  27. Elizabeth D says:

    To Tim, Let me try to explain, because I think this is a widespread misunderstanding especially of men. As a catechist of 6th graders, I teach my kids very clearly and with much reiteration that they are meant to be a virgin, that it’s good to be a virgin and to be pure, and to stay a virgin for life or until they get married, and there’s no other choice that would be a good choice, and I guarantee they will have a happier life if they listen to me and act accordingly. To the majority of today’s youth and young adults very few of whom grew up aware of an ideal and necessity of chastity or virginity and have been mangled by the sexual revolution, a message that apparently “it’s too late” to be fully valued, at the point when they begin to know Christ and the Church, can be a breathtaking blow and humiliation undermining the experience and understanding of having been forgiven of sins they repent of. It can actually suggest that women’s dignity, especially on a social level in the Church, is fragile and breakable, and that in particular “it’s too late” to be seen in as positive a way, particularly by devout men (who I think are devoted to female virginity as an inspiring support of their own chastity). The Church’s challenge is to convey to women that Jesus doesn’t see them like other men do, such as the devout guy at church who finds consecrated virgins obviously more inspiring than they, or the cad who exploited their virginity in the first place (who likes to “use” virgins so he wouldn’t get a disease) and treated them as cheap and disposable. These are precisely women who have been treated as cheap and disposable by some man and need the strong reassurance that Jesus values them fully at the value of His own life that He lays down to redeem them.

  28. Kathleen10 says:

    TimFinnegan lad, ye may not be wearing the collar, but ye gave a fine answer to the question. :)

  29. Malta says:

    TimFinnegan–very cool! I LOVE Finnegan’s Wake! I have read Ulysses several times, and have been trying to read Finnegan’s Wake for a couple of years now. It’s not a novel, per se, but rather a very complex what I would call an algorithm, or puzzle to be solved. I have the Robinson Skeleton Key and annotations, but I can still only read portions at a time to get an understanding. I’m sure you know that it is apocalyptic in tone–or based on Giambattista Vico’s “Ricorso.” He pretty convincingly laid out the four stages of human society. Without getting into a big debate, we are at the last of ours. I believe based on the apparition at Akita (which I wrote about in this book: https://www.amazon.com/Catholic-Mystical-Tradition-Chris-Conlee/dp/1579216854/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1522021030&sr=8-1&keywords=chris+conlee+catholic+mystical+tradition)

    We are in for a terrible pounding from God–fire falling from the sky, wiping out a great part of humanity. This could either be an EMP from the sun (which in Ted Koppel’s book “Lights Out,” he convincingly argued could kill up to 90% of Americans,) or a war with Russia. James Joyce’s book was prophetic in my opinion. The “Ricorso” would mean society re-setting itself. I don’t know when it’s going to happen, but it will happen.

  30. Malta says:

    Ted Koppel wrote about a cyber-attack; but it’s the same grid-down scenario as an EMP attack. This is no joke. People don’t realize what would happen if a Carrington like event happened. There a National Geographic documentary “American Blackout” (source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aNx8UHteFUU) that is terrifying. Believe it or not, this does tie into the mass, because we have lost our orientation towards God–and to deny young people a yearning for something as basic as worship is demonic, in my opinion. Never mind the sacrifice of millions of babies, much greater than even the Aztecs could have even envisioned.

  31. Elizabeth D says:

    A follow up on the dangers of women feeling that the significance of virginity to them as “no longer a virgin” means it’s “too late”: In conversation with a woman today, who had been exposed to sex way too young and suffered sex abuse as a minor, she used this exact phrase to describe that that after her initial abusive experience, with a dismal loss of self worth apparently, she thereafter felt that since she was no longer a virgin “it’s too late” and now doesn’t matter what happens to her body sexually, she then was horribly exploited and disrespected by men. This woman has struggled for years to let the grace of Christ pull her out of that brokenness. She’s doing well now.

  32. Malta says:

    I don’t think anyone who has any understanding of the US’ capabilities are knows that we can literally destroy Russia very quickly–NATOs Trident missile system under the seas of the west coast of Scotland alone could. But this is easily verifiable; we are fighting currently fighting the Russians in the north-central part of Russia, which could escalate into a doomsday scenario. I was in the Navy myself, and if Russia thinks we’re going to stand-down, they are in for a rude awakening. They killed a couple of our Spec. Ops. boys, and we responded by killing hundreds of their soldiers. This is not going to end well with Putin trying to fled his muscles. He knows our secret capabilities, but seems to ignore how powerful we are. I wonder if he has a death-wish? I wonder if this ties into Fatima?


  33. Malta says:

    My grandfather was a B-17 pilot. We Americans do not back-down in the face of conflict. I’m not kidding when I say we are in conflict with the Russians. I somewhat lost my last girlfriend telling her I was thinking of going to Syria to help our troops there against the Russians. My dad was in Vietnam, my great-uncle fought in WWI, and took a Luger from a dead Nazi. We Conlees/Leslies were Nazi/socialist-fighters, and now I am trying to get my 20 y/o son to join the Marines or the Army–Socrates said the greatest duty is to one’s Country, even if you don’t agree with your Country. I’m ranting because I think we’re headed into WWIII. I think we are on the verge of the Fatima/Akita prophecies.

  34. Malta says:

    One last thing: that German Luger was given to me–but I got rid of it almost immediately. There is a good energy associated with relics, but negative energy associated with items associated with negative things. As a private investigator of all former FBI Agents I was given a case involving a satanic cult. I’ve had very strange phenomena happen to me. I think we need to focus on the positive—the incredible beauty of the TLM for instance. This cult worships death. Local law enforcement and the FBI has been notified about it. There is a cult of death out there that is insidious beyond belief. I won’t get into here because it’s not the right forum–but things are sicker than people imagine. Which makes not allowing kids to worship the TLM disgusting.

  35. Imrahil says:

    Dear Malta,

    I never handled a Luger, but I did handle an MG3 which basically is an MG42. I did not feel any negative energy, except of course the one time it got jammed.

  36. un-ionized says:

    Elizabeth, you write very well about a painful subject.

  37. TimFinnegan says:


    Thank you!


    I have not yet read the book, that will be a task I need to work my way up to. It’s not an easy thing to do by any means. I enjoy the song very much though.

    Elizabeth D:

    Who is saying that it’s “too late” for these women to be “fully valued? I’m certainly not. Your objection seems to be that virginity being a better and more dignified state causes others who are unable to attain it to despair. But the problem is not with the fact that states in life are not equal, it is the despair that is the problem. We shouldn’t shirk from the fact that virginity is objectively better than non-virginity simply because non-virgins can’t take back what they’ve done. While we may permanently live with the consequences of our actions (which is true for many sins, not just sexual ones) this shouldn’t cause us to despair, and it shouldn’t keep us from exalting things like the consecrated virginity, the priesthood, and the religious life.

    It should also be pointed out that simply being a virgin is different than being a consecrated virgin, and that the latter is a more dignified state than the former.

  38. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Malta – Of course, there’s always a place for spoils and history, and if you had needed to use the gun, I’m sure it could have been blessed. But I don’t blame you for getting rid of something nasty, if that’s what you felt.

    Re: virgins – More people should know about the opening bits of The City of God by St. Augustine, where he talks about how a virgin raped is still a virgin in God’s eyes; and that in God’s eyes, rape does not take away the chastity of anyone but the rapist. (He was fighting the cultural tradition of ancient Rome, which said that a raped woman really should kill herself to show that it wasn’t consensual.)

  39. TimFinnegan says:

    To clarify on my previous comment: I don’t think that virginity for virginity’s own sake is what ought to be lauded, but consecrating that virginity to God ought to be, and it is in doing so that consecrated virgins uphold the dignity of women in an extraordinary way.

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