Wherein Mr. Cricket goes to the Zoo

Forgive typos… I am writing under time constraint and pressures.

Biretta tip to Peter Kwasniewski  – o{]:¬) – for the following from Mr Cricket, Andrea Grillo, whose photo on his blog looks like – and it is exactly what he is doing – giving everyone the finger.

He is a scholar of liturgy and one of the purest of the pure ideologues of “re-interpretation” of Cult, Code and Creed in light of the gnostic reading between the lines of the texts of Vatican II, the empty spaces provided perhaps by active imagination.

He hates you.

Be clear about this.  The people who are relentless in attacking the Vetus Ordo don’t hate and fear only the Vetus Ordo, they hate and fear the people who desire it.  This is what Mr. Cricket posted on his site in the wake of a celebration of Vespers held at the Pantheon (aka St. Mary of the Martyrs) during the recent Summorum Pontificum Pilgrimage.  The celebrant for Vespers was the Cardinal Archbishop of Bologna, Matteo Zuppi who for some time was the Auxiliary Bishop for the center of Rome, where you find the churches with the Vetus Ordo.   Then-Bp. Zuppi had been at the FSSP parish for Masses.  Zuppi is now also President of the Italian Bishops Conference, which is a position of considerable heft.  People must understand that the rest of the Church throughout the world is influenced by what happens at and around the HQ.

Grillo’s venomous piece is, in part, a warning shot towards Zuppi, who is spoken of as papabile (electable as Pope) in the next conclave which some say isn’t all that far away.  I suppose Mr. Cricket’s default position is that everyone is out for himself and, therefore, Zuppi used the Pantheon appointment as part of a campaign. The other part of this is that Zuppi has shown openness towards those who are promoting a homosexual agenda.  Those who are on that side of things might have feelings of dismay that Zuppi cheerfully celebrated Vespers in the Vetus Ordo.   Hence, …

Here’s Grillo.  Not my translation:

“What are you, stupid?” [“Ma che sei scemo?” in the original… it’s quite a strong statement] Matteo Zuppi and the nostalgics of Summorum Pontificum  [“nostalgia” here has far more negative connotation than it would in English]

I very much enjoyed, a few months ago, the interview given by Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, shortly after his appointment as President of the CEI, in which, in his Romanesque style, he said that, to those who resent Pope Francis’ insistence on mercy, saying that this centrality of the theme is a serious mistake, one should say, instinctively, Roman-style, “What are you, stupid?” Well that was my own reaction when a friend said to me yesterday, “Did you see that Zuppi presided over the vespers of the nostalgics of Summorum Pontificum?” And I said, “What are you nuts?”  [“Ma che sei scemo”, again. Off the bat we learn from this that Cricket enjoys it when people call other people “stupid”.]

My amazement stems from some factors, which Card. Zuppi could not have failed to consider in his willingness to preside over the vespers of this de facto “outlawed” association and which claims to nurture a situation that the MP Traditionis Custodes has in fact overcome with the abrogation of the “object” of remembrance. [This is obviously pure fantasy on Mr. Cricket’s part.  Firstly, Traditionis custodes (TC) says that the Vetus Ordo can continue. It’s there in black and white.  Also, the Summorum Pontificum Pilgrimage events included a Solemn Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica by a priest who is in the Secretariat of State office.  So much for “outlawed” and “abrogation”.  When you get to Art. 8 of TC you have to read it with the eye of the technician rather than of the guy who squeegees windshields at the stop light. But, hey, Cricket, don’t let facts interfere with the narrative.] But I try to clarify the matter further:

(a) It seems that Card. Zuppi wanted to dampen the surprise [surprise to him, maybe, it was advertised widely] by saying that he accepted the invitation well before he became CEI president, but I do not know if before the publication of Traditionis Custodes. What is certain is that to stand at the presidency of a liturgical action that TC censures [This is a lie.  TC does not “censure” the celebration of Vespers in the Vetus Ordo.] and makes possible only in limited and circumstantial cases constitutes a fact of singular gravity. [Or singular hope, if you flip the coin.]

b) Secondly, the naming of the “Roman pilgrimage” of the so-called “People of Summorum Pontificum,” [Like those “scare quotes” and the “so-called”?  Remember: he doesn’t like the people who want traditional worship.] under the condition of the abrogation [again the lie] of the document that gives its name to the group itself, should have made one cautious, at least in the second place, with respect to the acceptance immediately given.  [Or maybe Zuppi was a) honorable in not standing the group up or b) trying to show compassion for people who have been violently kicked in the teeth by people like Grillo.]

(c) Third, the “representative” function of the CEI President cannot help but sound jarring with respect to the repeated assertion (in Traditionis Custodes and then also in Desiderio Desideravi) that the only lex orandi, even for the celebration of vespers, is that established by the liturgical books of Paul VI and John Paul II and not by the earlier books.  [Another possibility is that there are some people in the Church who are sort of “doing their own thing” under the shadow of Francis, who may not have as much of a dog in the fight as they would like.  It could be that they are far more invested in this than Francis and the influence they had is now slipping since he is moving on to other issues.]

[Watch this…] At the root of the misunderstanding behavior, [another shot at Zuppi.. poor man, doesn’t understand!] however, lies an original issue that marks the MP Summorum Pontificum: namely, the fact that it is the fruit of a “curial disease,” which has its center in Rome. Nostalgia for preconciliar liturgical forms (but also for the Church and preconciliar relationships and languages and doctrines and disciplines and forms) is a disease not primarily of the periphery, but of the Roman center of the curia[This is a pretty vicious attack on Benedict XVI.  Summorum Pontificum is the fruit of a disease, nostagia, not of the wider world but of the Roman Curia.  This joker hasn’t the slightest clue what he is talking about if he thinks that SP came from urging of the Curia rather than as a response to the many people exactly in the periphery.  The periphery was listened to under Benedict, who saw that there was, in fact, a “disease”, and that was a liturgical disconnect from our Tradition. ]

To the extent that you become a “man of the curia” you begin to hear the sirens of a “strange mercy,” which manages to convince you that you can stand, by mercy, [and here we go with the counciliar hyper-absolutism] with one foot in the council and the other in the pre- and anti-conciliar[NB: Anti- not ante-] And this illusion can infect even the best, to the extent that they allow themselves to be reduced to functionaries of a “mercy” of confusion and reaction. Desiderio Desideravi says it well: it is not the “sense of mystery” that we need, but it is the awe of the paschal mystery that nourishes identity and formation in the celebrated faith.  [Here’s the problem with the “Paschal Mystery” emphases in the post-conciliar absolutists’ minds.  They right look to the eschatological joy that the Resurrection presaged.  However, they have so emphasized it that they obscure the rest of the Paschal Mystery, the part that gives us the means of attaining it: Passion, Sacrifice, Death.  They want the joy without the Cross, like … proponents of the prosperity gospel.]

In perceiving sharply this difference lies the possibility of accepting or rejecting the invitation to preside at a vesper that fields a ritual ordo on which all resistance to Vatican II is symbolically projected, liturgical as well as ecclesial, disciplinary as well as doctrinal. [Straw man… not many people like that exist in reality.  Yes, there are people who reject V2 in its entirety.  Not so many.  Most will say that it was the most important Council in our lifetime and not accept that it was a new Council of Jerusalem ushering in a new age of the Church (which these absolutists do, probably not from conviction but because it is a line that brings them power.] If a man of Matteo Zuppi’s worth falls into this symbolic trap, I am surprised and wonder: [Orrrr… maybe you want to think the worst of people (look at that photo, above… orrrrr…. maybe you don’t know what you don’t know….] but how can one accept the request of a group that names itself and organizes pilgrimages with explicit references to a document abrogated in 2021? [Benedict XVI’s Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum was more than a mere juridical solution parts of which could be abrogated… but which probably haven’t been.  Mr. Cricket gets that… just barely.  Hence the fear.  I have the image of a slasher movie in which the girl alone in the house knows she shouldn’t open that door.] How did a Cardinal President of an Episcopal Conference fail to take into account this heavy symbolic and ideological entrapment?  [Ockham’s razor?  Maybe Zuppi isn’t a jerk?]

(The Italian original is HERE.)

I had a good long conversation with a real Vatican insider recently, not like Grillo.   He confirms what I learned back in the day when I was in these halls and offices.  There are those who were paid attention to.  Then they get dropped.  Languishing on the outside, waiting by the phone like a jilted cheerleader whom the captain of the football team once took out and got something from, she joins the tribe of mean girls in the bathrooms, to make her presence known and try to keep some of the luster she had for that fleeing moment before he moved on.   This sort of dynamic stems from… various causes.  I’ll stop here.

I applaud Card. Zuppi.  I know he wrote a preface to a really bad book that shall remain nameless.   BTW… one of the things I miss here in Rome at this time of year is Jasmine.  But I digress.

Zuppi gave a lovely sermon at Vespers. He talked about unity, which is the role of Peter.

Meanwhile, be a Custos Traditionis.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Liberals, Save The Liturgy - Save The World, The Coming Storm, The Drill, Traditionis custodes, What are they REALLY saying?. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Not says:

    Appreciate you put a face to this enemy of the Church.
    NOSTALGIA 1. A bittersweet longing for things, persons, or situations of the past.
    I prayed the Latin Mass this week. Is that the past? How can the Latin Mass that has been prayed everyday, non-stop for generations be referred to as nostalgia?

  2. Maximillian says:


    Just unbelievable! Priest suspended by bishop for speaking out against sodomy etc.

  3. Josephus Muris Saliensis says:

    In response to Maximilian, I hope many people will write to crazy Bishop Ray Browne, see his statement here: https://www.dioceseofkerry.ie/2022/11/statement-issued-on-behalf-of-the-diocese-of-kerry-regarding-the-offending-homilies/

    Information on what happened here, and the excellent sermon (scroll down): http://marklambert.blogspot.com/2022/11/grech-listening-sort-ofirish-bishop.html

    And please pray for them all, and that poor benighted island, once so faithful. No longer, no longer.

  4. amenamen says:

    Nostalgia may explain how some older folks long for the days when they were “looking for fun and feeling groovy.” (Remember the 59th Street Bridge Song, from 1966?).

  5. Fr. Reader says:

    He is angry :)

  6. Lurker 59 says:

    Mr. Cricket’s piece has such a “Notice me, Sempi” vibe to it that it makes me truly embarrassed for him.

  7. Charles E Flynn says:


    We should have an annual St. Peter Damien Award, the first of which should go to this Irish priest. His bishop should be sent to a refresher course.

  8. Maximillian says:

    Fr Z we all expect you will deliver a thundering post on this abomination re Fr Sheehy. Utter disbelief amongst us here in our parish.

  9. Maximillian says:

    Fr Peter Morello, PhD
    NOVEMBER 2, 2022 AT 5:01 PM

    With bishops like Kerry’s Ray Browne who needs Luther?
    “Be a sinner and sin on bravely, but have stronger faith and rejoice in Christ, who is the victor of sin, death, and the world. Do not for a moment imagine that this life is the abiding place of justice: sin must be committed. Sin cannot tear you away from him, even though you commit adultery a hundred times a day and commit as many murders” (Enders, Briefwechsel III 208).
    How ironic to read a modern Protestant, Harriet Beecher Stowe speak infinitely more in line with Christ, and Catholicism than Catholic Bishop Ray Browne:
    “Christ died for sin and took its penalty upon himself as a necessary sacrifice, to the governmental view of the atonement that interpreted the death of Christ as an example of the seriousness of sin that inspires sinners to repent and live sacrificial lives for others” (Harriet Beecher Stowe in Stowe’s theological transition reformation 21).

  10. cajunpower says:

    I’m glad that Zuppi doesn’t share Francis’ traditiophohia, but Zuppi still makes me very uneasy. Zuppi’s participation in the pilgrimage seems calculated. Frankly, even the spat with Grillo seems calculated—all part of a campaign to show that Zuppi is NOT Grillo’s man, even though he has been for years.

    Not to mention the foreword to James Martin’s book.

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