Beyond Pius V – Andrea Grillo and Alcuin Reid

For the past week or so, the blog world has been talking about Andrea Grillo’s new book Beyond Pius V: Conflicting Interpretations of the Liturgical Reform. On January 21st, Dom Alcuin Reid posted a review of the book which can be found at New Liturgical Movement. Reid begins his review by saying:

Late last year the Liturgical Press published this (second) edition in English, which includes a new chapter considering Summorum Pontificum and the subsequent 2011 Instruction Universae Ecclesiae. Why? The author claims that its publication, together with Massimo Faggioli’s True Reform (2012) and Patrick Regan’s Advent to Pentecost (2012), from the same publisher “is surely a ‘sign of the times’ worth noting.” To Grillo’s list we can add from this publisher John Baldovin’s Reforming the Liturgy (2009) and Piero Marini’s A Challenging Reform (2007). Indeed: the Liturgical Press is pulling out all the stops to defend the liturgical reform of Paul VI—presumably because it is considered to be in some danger.

At the conclusion of his review, Reid writes that:

[Y]es, we must move forward. And in doing so we shall indeed be moving (further) “beyond Pius V.” But we shall also, rightly, be moving beyond Paul VI—a journey for which Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, both through his critical examination of the liturgical reform as a cardinal and through his acts and teaching as Pope Benedict XVI—in particular his gift to the Church of Summorum Pontificum—has given us much guidance indeed.

Grillo felt the need to respond.

Grillo gets to the heart of the issue with admirable clarity and forthrightness, even if he perhaps expresses himself with more combativeness than one might have wanted. Pray Tell is happy to publish his sharp response, and we hope for a calm and constructive discussion of these important issues.



Before Paul VI?

by Andrea Grillo, translated by Barry Hudock.

The title and the conclusion of Alcuin Reid’s review of the American edition of Beyond Pius V reveal an obvious incomprehension of the principal questions addressed by the book.

Reid begins, though in a completely disingenuous way, by expressing his agreement that the rediscovery of the liturgy as the fons of the Church’s life is the central goal of the liturgical movement. On this, he seems to agree with my thesis. But then, with a quick pivot, he reveals his true inclinations and his particular idiosyncrasies. Here we find a small taste of authentically and hopelessly traditionalistic thought: Reid has no intention of putting up with or even understanding the fact that the history of the liturgical movement has clearly led to an epochal shift, initiated by Pius XII, in which the decision to restore the paschal vigil, and then holy week, and then all that makes up the church’s liturgy, made it clear that reforming the rites themselves was necessary. This, we should note, is expressed by Reid in his own way, which is both naïve and disarming: he speaks of my “conviction—often found amongst liturgists and prelates in Italy—that the new rites are themselves essential to liturgical formation, to the achievement of participatio actuosa and to the renewal of ecclesial life, and that the usus antiquior is, of its essence, antithetical to the achievement of these indispensible aims.”

It is truly surprising, not to say shameless, that Reid is willing to speak of the solemn decisions of the Second Vatican Council to reform the rites as “convictions of liturgists and prelates in Italy.” The fact that the solemn deliberations of an ecumenical council are attributed to private and questionable opinions explains a lot about the respect for reality and for tradition that unfortunate readers are subjected to by these reactionary approaches.

It is the Council that identified the need to profoundly modify the rite of Pius V. It is not the whim of Italian prelates, but the text of Sacrosanctum Concilium that officially called for it; Reid, like many of his reactionary friends, confuses the conciliar text with the backroom chatter of the Roman Curia.

But Reid does not seem interested in the true history – only in chasing fantasies about the “extraordinary active participation” of the traditionalist groups, all perfectly formed and ardent in their apostolic zeal.

In the end, it is clear that he wants to defend, at all costs – even at the cost of reason itself – the logic of the rite of Pius V, insisting that if one must be “beyond Pius V,” one must also agree to be “beyond Paul VI.”

This is a proposal, and not only this one, that I do not understand. For me, it is obvious that “beyond Pius V” means, necessarily, also beyond Paul VI, beyond John Paul II, and even – if we must say it – beyond Benedict XVI. It strikes me that Reid wants to place himself and the tradition he chooses to accept as being “only” beyond Paul VI. And here I am skeptical. Could it be that, by applying the preposition “beyond” only to Paul VI, Reid really means to say not “after” but “before”? Might his intention be simply to stay, forever, “before Paul VI”? Just to make sure of this result, Reid demonstrates his willingness to reconstruct the history and the liturgy of the last century in a totally ideological way, with no respect for the truth. I believe we have already wasted too much time with these pointless ravings.




  1. ” I believe we have already wasted too much time with these pointless ravings.”
    Perfectly stated considering what happened on Feb 28, 2013 and especially after this report: Breaking his silence… the 86-year-old (pontiff) reportedly said: “God told me to” when asked what had pushed him to retire to a secluded residence in the Vatican gardens.

    We are now proceeding in a new direction. Time for D.A. Reid to stop beating a dead horse.

  2. Bravo, Andrea Grillo. The continual denial of the “epochal shift” that took place historically, as well as the determination to confuse private opinions and “backroom chatter” with the pronouncements of an ecumenical council, are problems that need to be called out and confronted. What Deacon Reid does is not history, it’s fantasy posing as revisionist history.

  3. I find Grillo’s response both unsubstantial and unbecoming of one claiming to be an academic — he spends most of his effort in attacking Reid rather than responding to the points that had been made. Additionally, his polemic (“completely disingenuous”, “authentically and hopelessly traditionalistic thought”, “naive”, “reactionary” – not once but twice, “chasing fantasies”) is inappropriate, especially given the charity extended him by Dom Alcuin in his review of Beyond Pius V.

    He begins by taking one of the genuine compliments that Reid gave him (concerning liturgy as fons) and returning it as a backhanded compliment to Reid. Bad form.

    The position that Reid rightly called a “straw man” he fails to address:
    This is Grillo’s straw man: the conviction—often found amongst liturgists and prelates in Italy—that the new rites are themselves essential to liturgical formation, to the achievement of participatio actuosa and to the renewal of ecclesial life, and that the usus antiquior is, of its essence, antithetical to the achievement of these indispensible aims.

    To address the issue, Grillo would need to demonstrate not only that SC called for reforms (an undisputed point) but also that the new rites are essential to liturgical formation and that the Usus antiquior is incapable of providing that formation. Until he can demonstrate that second piece to be true, then such a notion is in fact only the “conviction of liturgists and prelates in Italy” — even if they were the same who were Council Fathers.

    And regarding the “fantasies” that Grillo speaks of — he clearly has little if any personal experience of the EF communities, otherwise he would know from experience the truth of Reid’s claim that the overwhelming majority of contemporary celebrations of the Sacred Liturgy (and not only Holy Mass) according to the usus antiquior evince a level of formation and true liturgical participation with which the Fathers of the twentieth-century liturgical movement and indeed of the Second Vatican Council would be utterly delighted.

    Of course, for Grillo to admit that liturgical participation can occur in the Usus antiquior would be problematic — because it would demonstrate a critical flaw in his whole thesis, and would be tantamount to admitting that what Reid called out as a straw man actually is one.

    Beyond this, he creates a second straw man: arguing that Reid wishes only to remain “before” Paul VI. However, Reid is clear in his statement — to be moving (further) “beyond Pius V” […and] beyond Paul VI. This is to take the best of the liturgical tradition, including the lessons learned through the Liturgical Movement, through Sacrosanctum Concilium, and through Summorum Pontificum and to move forward, not back.

    Enough fuming from Grillo — until he has both substance and civility to answer Reid’s claims, he is in fact wasting his time. Again, to borrow Reid’s words, “such shouting is not convincing”.

    1. @Matthew Morelli – comment #3:
      If the council thought that the EF was capable of providing liturgical formation, why would it have called for an extensive reform? That makes no sense. In fact, SC sets up the liturgical formation of the faithful as the driving force behind the reforms. That most of the council fathers believed the EF was not able to serve the needs and desires of the church seems implicit and obvious.

      1. @Jeff Rice – comment #6:
        Exactly Jeff, stated succinctly and so obvious !

        “The obvious is that which is never seen until someone expresses it simply.”
        Khalil Gibran

      2. @Jeff Rice – comment #6:
        “If the council thought that the EF was capable of providing liturgical formation, why would it have called for an extensive reform? ”

        Jeff, it does not follow from the council that the EF provided NO liturgical formation or participation, or was inherently antithetical to participation and liturgical spirituality and formation. It only follows that the council fathers thought that a reformed liturgy would be better at achieving these ends.

        Many people before the council, and in the present day, are fruitfully formed and nourished by the EF – and find spiritual fulfillment in that liturgical environment. That is a simple fact, which could be charitably acknowledged even by critics of the EF. Those real, living people who live their Catholic faith today nourished by the EF (I am not one, by the way) are walking, talking proof that the EF is not inherently antithetical to liturgical formation, participation, or the renewal of ecclesial life. And they are not drawn to the EF or to deeper Catholic spirituality IN SPITE OF the liturgy. The fact that there is even a small minority that feels better nourished in the EF shows that the “inherently antithetical” claim is silly. Grillo would have more credibility for me if he denied making such an extreme claim.

    2. @Matthew Morelli – comment #3:
      I think the first excerpt you quote (“Grillo’s straw man”) gets to the heart of the matter. Reid states clearly what is at stake. But Reid is on the wrong side of that question, in my view, and his interpretation of Vatican II is simply incorrect. Grillo expresses himself sharply, I admit, but the full force of his furor is directed at the falseness of Reid’s arguments, not at the person of Reid. At least I’m pretty sure that was his intention.

      The old rite, no matter how emotionally people are invested in it, no matter how closely they follow it during its celebration, does not express the nature of the Church according to the fathers of Vatican II. Clericalized sacred drama, no matter how prayerfully one prays along with it, is not what the fathers of Vatican II wanted. (There were such liturgies before Vatican II so they would have known about them.) The fathers wanted a liturgy communal in form, not merely in shared emotionality (or, less polemically, shared spirituality). One can debate endlessly whether this or that detail of the reformed rite follows the prescriptions of SC. That is rather beside the point. The main point is that the reformed liturgy is communal in form, – and this, and only this, is what Catholic liturgy is to be after Vatican II. How Summorum pontificum fits into this remains a mystery to me.

      Reid’s talk about a new moment, a new stage, overcoming the narrowness of the 1970s, and the like, however he words it, must be named for what it is: a clear and simple rejection of the understanding of liturgy in Vatican II, as I have tried to portray it above.

      I can understand why Grillo is combative about this. He knows what is at stake and he cares deeply about it. I agree with him.


      1. @Stanislaus Kosala – comment #15:
        No, I’m not.

        There is Participation 1 and Participation 2. There is much that is very good about Participation 1… it is what the magisterium advocated from 1903 until 1963. And then, in 1963, the magisterium solemnly decreed, in effect, that Participation 1 is no longer adequate.


      2. @Anthony Ruff, OSB – comment #18:
        Not only did it decree Participation 1 is inadequate, it laid down specific elements to follow to get people moving toward Participation 2.

        Any form of the Roman Rite is bound by honor, obedience, theology, and unity to strive for the best implementation of Church teaching with regard to participation. Even if there is an attachment to the 1570/1962 Rite. Lacking that, we have every reason to question their loyalty to the Church’s teaching, to its liturgy, and to the underpinnings of the Roman Rite itself.

        The former Roman Rite is a backwater, and will eventually fade. Its laudable qualities have been subsumed into the modern Roman Rite. And if other good qualities can be encouraged, they should be.

      3. @Anthony Ruff, OSB – comment #25:
        Father Anthony,

        I have seen your comments but I’m still confused. Participation 1, if I’m right , is paying attention to what the priest does at the altar, saying/singing responses, singing the ordinary, propers and hymns, and receiving holy communion, all of which happen in the EF.
        What additional practices does participation 2 entail? All you seem to say above is that it is “communal in form.” But what does that mean concretely?

        I would really appreciate clarification on this point. I guess I’m just incredulus that an ecumencial council could set criteria for liturgy that would make all liturgical celebrations up to that point illicit, and lacking the proper form of true liturgical celebration. It makes sense to me, and I agree with this point, that the elements of community are not sufficiently explicit in the EF, but to say that they are entirely lacking is mystifying to me.

      4. @Stanislaus Kosala – comment #26:
        I didn’t say that all liturgical celebrations before Vatican II were illicit, nor that elements of community were entirely lacking, so it’s difficult for me to reply to you.
        Perhaps chapter 2 on participation of Grillo’s book would help you.

      5. @Anthony Ruff, OSB – comment #36:

        Father Anthony,

        I know that you didn’t say those things outright, but when you refer to the liturgy before Vatican II as being “a clericalized sacred drama” whose “audience” is only linked by a common emotionality, and when you speak of it as not being communal in form (which implies that it is missing an essential aspect that liturgy requires in order to be liturgy), it’s hard to see your words as implying anything else.

        When you say that despite those concerns the pre-Vatican ii liturgy was still licit and not deficient in form it sounds like either you are contradicting yourself, or that magically before 1963 the same missal was authentic and complete liturgy, and after 1963 it loses the form of authentic liturgy and is just sacred drama, so that an underground community say in Ukraine without access to Rome, would go from having a real liturgy to simply a clericalized sacred drama without even noticing it which is, of course absurd. The other option is of course to acknowledge that liturgy according to the 1962 missal is still authentic liturgy after 1963 even though certain key aspects of liturgy are not sufficiently expressed in it.

        I am still interested in Grillo’s book, but the discussion here has drastically reduced my interest. The type of account that you present just seems highly implausible, it actually makes the Ratzinger seem very attractive.

      6. @Anthony Ruff, OSB – comment #10:
        Thanks, Anthony! You have done us a favour by expressing the difference brought about by the Second Vatican Council so clearly and so succinctly, i.e. a development from clericalized sacred drama to a liturgy that’s communal in form.


  4. Good points, Matthew – whichever side of the debate you lean toward, this was not a well-written or particularly professional rebuttal from Grillo.

    I find it interesting that after quoting Reid:
    “…the usus antiquior is, of its essence, antithetical to the achievement of these indispensible aims.”

    Grillo does not dispute that he holds this view. Does he actually believe that the usus antiquior is antithetical to full, active, and conscious participation? This does not square with common sense or the history of the liturgical movement, which began and continued for many years with the goal of increasing participation in the existing pre-conciliar liturgy.
    One can certainly argue that the very existence of the council shows more drastic reforms were necessary.
    One can argue that the post-conciliar liturgy is a much-needed improvement as far as FACP is concerned.
    But that the pre-conciliar liturgy is(was) inherently antithetical to ecclesial renewal and FACP? A bit extreme, if that is what Grillo really thinks. Isn’t it possible to say that reform was needed, and the final product was better, without also saying that the pre-conciliar liturgy was useless/worthless in terms of liturgical spirituality and ecclesial formation? Am I to believe that centuries of Catholics only achieved liturgical spirituality in spite of the liturgy? NO redeeming features to that tridentine mess?

    I also find it interesting that Reid is accused of focusing on “backroom chatter”. When I hear constantly (from many on this blog, among other places) that one cannot understand the documents of the council without delving into the committee deliberations, politics, and personal views of the council fathers. I often see council paragraphs dismissed as bones thrown to the traditionalist cadre.
    I’m all for not confusing deliberations with official pronouncements of the council, but let’s be consistent about it!

  5. Jared & Matthew – without sinking into semantics, a couple of points:
    – Reid states: “….convictions of liturgists and prelates in Italy.” This is not a * straw man* and it does reveal that Reid is either mis-stating facts or is trying to use dismissive language. Grillo merely refutes this obvious exaggeration or distortion (you may not like that he calls this exaggeration of SC or VII as curial backroom chatter but that is what Reid is alleging) Jared – this Reid exaggeration is very different from the many of us who contend that SC and VII documents need to be understood in context; studying those who wrote, spoke, developed these documents (but these folks were not just liturgists and Italian prelates). Suggest that you are not being consistent.
    To use your *alphabets – FACP – anticipate that this is at the heart of the point/counterpoint. Reid argues that the 1962 mass can be FACP and Grillo will respond that obviously the VII bishops came to a different conclusion – thus, the rreforms and the Paul VI mass.
    Jared – yes, you may not like the way Grillo replied but your comments basically align with his thought – reform was needed, the final product was better or, at least, corrected what was seen as no longer life giving in the 1962 mass.
    Not sure how you arrived at your next comments – it is the usual gambit that those who support reform are saying that *centuries of catholics were not aided by the Tridentine mass? No one including Grillo is saying this – it is a tired knee jerk reaction.
    Finally, you can not just focus on liturgy – the reform is based upon a reformed ecclesiology, theology, etc. Reid either ignores or takes this out of context.

    1. @Bill deHaas – comment #5:
      “Not sure how you arrived at your next comments – it is the usual gambit that those who support reform are saying that *centuries of catholics were not aided by the Tridentine mass? No one including Grillo is saying this – it is a tired knee jerk reaction.”

      Bill, if it is a reaction it isn’t my reaction – that is my point here. Reid says: “[Grillo asserts that] the usus antiquior is, of its essence, antithetical to the achievement of these indispensible aims.” And Grillo, in his response to Reid makes no effort to deny that he thinks this. You say that no one, including Grillo, is saying this, and yet Grillo doesn’t deny it when accused.

      IF the usus antiquor is inherently antithetical to “liturgical formation, to the achievement of participatio actuosa and to the renewal of ecclesial life” THEN it logically follows that centuries of Catholics only achieved these worthy goals IN SPITE OF the liturgy as it existed. And thus were not aided by the liturgy. That is quite a claim, and it seems to fly in the face of common sense, at the very least, not to say charity and respect for the church’s historical liturgical legislation. If Grillo does assert this, then he deserves a rebuttal. If he did not, he ought to deny it and offer a more fair and balanced thesis. E.g. “I am not saying there is no spiritual value to the usus antiquor, on a personal or ecclesial level. Rather, I am saying that reform was needed – as proved by the existence of the council, among other evidence – and that the post-conciliar result is inherently more conducive to the achievement of participation and personal and communal spiritual expression and formation.”
      If Bruckner re-writes his 8th symphony, does it necessarily follow that the first version was junk? It’s possible to improve on something that is already good.

      1. @Jared Ostermann – comment #27:
        Sorry – that is your conclusion – doubt that most here would agree with that conclusion. You are making moral judgments that appear, on the surface, to be logical, but they, in fact, make little sense.
        You put words into Grillo’s mouth – but, would suggest that he agrees with you – you are reacting to his strong choice of words (thus, semantics).

      2. @Bill deHaas – comment #29:

        I didn’t put any words in Grillo’s mouth – none. Maybe Reid did – which is why it surprises me that Grillo doesn’t say anything like “I never said that” or “I never meant that”. If Reid is putting words in Grillo’s mouth, Grillo doesn’t deny those words. That’s all I’m pointing out.

        ‘Inherently antithetical” is a strong statement, and one that does have logical consequences. Personally, I would distance myself from such strong language in referring to a liturgical form that served the church for centuries and continues to appeal to a small, if vocal minority of Catholics.

  6. I think that Professor Grillo mostly has it right: the shift *was* epochal, though his comments occasionally generate more heat than light.

    Were liturgical formation and full, active, and conscious participation impossible before the reforms called for by SC? Of course not. The pioneers of the liturgical movement formed those whom they touched and taught them to participate. Hand missals helped others. But they were a small minority of RCs.

    The question is, were *most people* fed by the so-called usus antiquior? The Fathers of VII obviously thought that most were not. Most of us who were around before VII know that most of our fellow parishioners were not. The mass for most was either an opportunity for personal meditation or an obligation to be endured for 45 minutes or so per week.

    Were some poorly formed when the new rite was introduced? Certainly. There was (and there remains) a great deal of bitterness, at least some of which might have been prevented with better formation.

    Are some today drawn to the old mass? Obviously so, but they seem to be few in number, albeit vocal.

    Could worship be improved in most parishes on most Sundays? Probably. But I think that most who attend today are being better nourished by liturgy than most were prior to VII.

    Those who are more familiar with the research than I have pointed out that the fact that fewer nominal RCs attend mass each week than did before the 1960s has significantly less to do with liturgical changes than with a myriad of changes in society at large.

    As a former RC and now Episcopalian, I find myself viewing the “mass of the ages” and Rite 1 in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer rather similarly. Both to me are museum pieces, though the latter is admittedly easier for me to make sense of than the former since I never read Latin well enough to do more than pick out a word here and there. But neither of them are *my* language, nor the language of most RCs or Anglicans. But they are part of our heritage and should be respected as such.

  7. I don’t think there is a lot to be gained by accusations and refutations. If the Church is to be truly universal – catholic in the literal sense – there has to be reasonable room for some variation. What I personally dislike is when a proponent of the EF becomes aggressively intolerant. Unfortunately, it seems as though too many of the newly ordained in particular fall into the aggressively intolerant category.

    But it doesn’t have to be that way: we have a newly ordained priest that is a bit of a throwback – he wears cassocks, uses a chalice veil, pall and burse, wears ornate vestments, and likes to intone almost everything, but he is very thoughtful, and very tolerant. He clearly has a preference, but does not seem to think that there is anything wrong or inadequate about what the pastor does and has been doing for most of his life. We can live together.

  8. I recently viewed a video clip from Radio-Canada of their weekly televised Mass from September 1960. ( Aside from the use of the missal in force at that time, the celebration of the liturgy was at least prima facie indistinguishable from most contemporary celebrations – versus populum arrangement of the altar and participation of the people which can best be described as loud and clear. From my own review of the reformed and unreformed liturgical books, it seems then that the only major differences would be the calendar, lectionary and omission of some liturgical gestures and prayers. At least from my vantage point, I wonder about the prudence and charity of allowing divisions to form in the Church over these relatively minor differences.

  9. ‘That is rather beside the point. The main point is that the reformed liturgy is communal in form, – and this, and only this, is what Catholic liturgy is to be after Vatican II. How Summorum pontificum fits into this remains a mystery to me.’

    I just had a zen moment centered on the word communal. What are introverts to do? Summorum Pontificum may have been the gift of a possible introvert to introverts.

    1. @Brian Duffy – comment #12:
      Extroverts and introverts are chiefly defined by the way they draw energy from life experiences. Not outward preferences, expressions, or the lack of them.

      Introverts have periods of silence from which to draw inspiration, both during the liturgy and outside of it. They have experiences of reflection to attend to–even time-out moments to take during Mass or the Hours during which they go deeper.

      Some traditionalist introverts seem unwilling to do more than our most passive parishioners. Too many Catholics of all sorts expect to be serviced rather than take responsibility for the Lord’s commands to them.

      Speaking for myself, I’m a rather solid introvert. I find more spiritual insight in Lectio Divina and in contemplative forms. After a morning of liturgy at the parish, I find a Sunday afternoon nap the most delightful part of the day.

      What are introverts to do? Daily prayer. And naps help.

  10. 1. @Dale R. Rodrigue — comment #1

    “Time for D.A. Reid to stop beating a dead horse.”

    2014 is the year of the horse, and a blue horse at that, so what else is one to do if not beating a horse, dead or not?

    2. @Gerry Davila – comment #11:

    Your link does not work.

    Regardless, I’m sure pretty much everyone reading this thread would know where to find Reid’s response to Grillo’s response to Reid’s review of Grillo’s book.

    Which I thought was interesting; too bad, however, Dr. Reid felt the need to play the ever condescending maybe Grillo doesn’t get it because his English isn’t so swell card.

    3. @Brian Duffy — comment #12

    “Summorum Pontificum may have been the gift of a possible introvert to introverts.”

    Wait, are you saying, then, that the EF is not communal?

  11. What the Missal of Paul VI establishes is that liturgy is mutable. If Paul VI could move the liturgy in one direction, it is hard to see what principled objection would exist to one of his successors choosing to move it in another. If Trent is not timeless, neither is Vatican II.

    1. @Tom Piatak – comment #16:
      Tom, yes and no. In my opinion, there is something both right and wrong in what you wrote.

      Vatican II gave a general ‘form’ of liturgy, which is a very, very broad category, as long as it is communal. There could be all kinds of ways to implement Vatican II, and all sorts of further refinements to the liturgy of Paul VI. But in my understanding of tradition, of progress, of doctrinal development as has happened throughout history and happened in a massive leap at Vatican II, the ‘form’ of liturgy has to be, now and going forward, communal in a way in which the preconciliar liturgy simply is not. The liturgical principles of Vatican II are (not absolutely but very strongly) timeless. The liturgy of Paul VI is not. It is merely a contingent manifestation – but a very good one in my view – of the principles of Vatican II.


  12. Tangent: Here’s a Ship of Fools account of someone who recently attended his first Latin Mass in a chapel in San Francisco. It seems to be objective.

    Ship of Fools/ The Mystery Worshipper

  13. Mr. Kosala – re-read your first paragraph. Everything you cite focuses only on the EP? Thus, you can deduce that your focus in on the priest, consecration, receiving communion.

    Also, you continue (like others) to repeat the mantra – *a council would make all liturgical celebrations up to that point illicit*….where do you arrive at that conclusion? The church and councils have made reforms and changes throughout our history without calling into question what folks did before in good conscience. And no one is saying that the EF lacks *communal* elements completely.

    Vatican II reformed and changed eucharistic theology – it is the *action* (not an object you receive) of the *community*. It is both the liturgy of the word and the liturgy of the table. It uses the Emmaus story as a structure – gatheriing, story telling, breaking bread, and commissioning*.

    From VII:

    the Council makes the following decrees in order that the sacrifice of the Mass, even in its ritual forms, may become pastorally effective to the utmost degree.

    50. The Order of Mass is to be revised in a way that will bring out more clearly the intrinsic nature and purpose of its several parts, as also the connection between them, and will more readily achieve the devout, active participation of the faithful. For this purpose the rites are to be simplified, due care being taken to preserve their substance; elements that, with the passage of time, came to be duplicated or were added with but little advantage are now to be discarded; other elements that have suffered injury through accident of history are now, as may seem useful or necessary, to be restored to the vigor they had in the tradition of the Fathers.

    51. The treasures of the Bible are to be opened up more lavishly, so that a richer share in God’s word may be provided for the faithful. In this way a more representative portion of holy Scripture will be read to the people in the course of a prescribed number of years.

    52. By means of the homily the mysteries of the faith and the guiding principles of the Christian life are expounded from the sacred text during the course of the liturgical year; as part of the liturgy itself therefore, the homily is strongly recommended; in fact, at Masses celebrated with the assistance of the people on Sundays and holydays of obligation it is not to be omitted except for a serious reason.

    53. Especially on Sundays and holydays of obligation there is to be restored, after the gospel and the homily, “the universal prayer” or “the prayer of the faithful.” this prayer, in which the people are to take part, intercession shall be made for holy Church, for the civil authorities, for those oppressed by various needs, for all people, and for the salvation of the entire world. (See I Trn 2:1-2.)

    54. With art. 36 of this Constitution as the norm, in Masses celebrated with the people a suitable place may be allotted to their mother tongue. This is to apply in the first place to the readings and “the universal prayer,” but also, as local conditions may warrant, to those parts belonging to the people.

    55. That more complete form of participation in the Mass by which the faithful, after the priest’s communion, receive the Lord’s body from the same sacrifice, is strongly endorsed.

    56. The two parts that, in a certain sense, go to make up the Mass, namely, the liturgy of the word and the liturgy of the eucharist, are so closely connected with each other that they form but one single act of worship.

    240. The sign of communion is more complete when given under both kinds, since in that form the sign of the eucharistic meal appears more clearly. The intention of Christ that the new and eternal covenant be ratified in his blood is better expressed, as is the relation of the eucharistic banquet to the heavenly banquet.9

    They should also be taught that the Church may change the manner of celebrating and receiving the sacraments, provided their substance is safeguarded. In doing so, the church judges when such changes will better meet the devotion or needs of different times and places.11 At the same time the faithful should be urged to take part in the rite which brings out the sign of the eucharistic meal more fully.

    281. Following the example of Christ, the Church has always used bread and wine with water to celebrate the Lord’s Supper.

    283. The nature of the sign demands that the material for the eucharistic celebration appear as actual food. The eucharistic bread, even though unleavened and traditional in form, should therefore be made in such a way that the priest can break it and distribute the parts to at least some of the faithful. When the number of communicants is large or other pastoral needs require it, small hosts may be used. The gesture of breaking of the bread, as the eucharist was called in apostolic times, will more clearly show the eucharist as a sign of unity and charity, since the one bread is being distributed among the members of one family.

    1. @Bill deHaas – comment #28:
      I think that you should reread my first paragraph, I say that those things happen in the EF(Extraordinary Form) not in the Eucharistic Prayer (EP).

      Also, that is the first time I ever wrote that about Vatican II. If before Vatican II all that we could ever possibly have was a “clericalized sacred drama,” that lacked the very form of a true eucharistic celebration, then it is hard to see how there was any real liturgy ever before Vatican II.

      BTW, i’m pretty sure that the Eucharist is defined as the action of Christ primarily not that of the community, though the activity of the community is important. This is both pre and post vatican ii. Nothing that you quote from sacrosanctum concilium is necessarily absent from the Extraordinary Form.

      1. @Stanislaus Kosala – comment #32:

        The translation on the Vatican website of Sacrosanctum Concilium says:

        For the liturgy, “through which the work of our redemption is accomplished,” most of all in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist, is the outstanding means whereby the faithful may express in their lives, and manifest to others, the mystery of Christ and the real nature of the true Church.

        The faithful is the only actor in this sentence, though I’m not sure that is true in the Latin. I’d probably express it as an action of Christ because it is an action of his Body, the Church., rather than placing the two in opposition.

      2. @Jim McKay – comment #34:

        Christ is the principle actor in all of the sacraments, but when it comes to the Eucharist.
        Look at the catechism of the catechism of the Catholic Church 662.

      3. @Stanislaus Kosala – comment #32:
        “Nothing that you quote from sacrosanctum concilium is necessarily absent from the Extraordinary Form”.

        Not necessarily? I don’t ever recall a Roman EF with the communion rite as a banquet with communion under both forms for the laity, nor the use of the vernacular within the Mass rite. Other than the Good Friday rites, I don’t recall the use of any form of the prayer of the faithful either.

        The Roman canon is markedly deficient in every way compared to EP 3 and EP 4. It comes as no surprise Pope Benedict’s favorite EP was number 3. Even though he used the Roman canon from time to time.

      4. @Brian Palmer – comment #38:

        I don’t see your point. The OF can be celebrated completely in latin with holy communion only under one species, and distributed to communicants kneeling at an altar rail. Those practices are acceptable in the post-vatican ii liturgy so they can’t be what invalidates the Ef.

  14. Jared,

    The remark by Reid is a bit of hyperbole that Grillo takes as a reference to the teaching of VII. He can’t distance himself from it without undercutting his primary point, that these things are not private opinions but conciliar teaching. IMO the fault is entirely Reid’s for smashing 2 arguments into one sentence, obscuring both. Grillo chooses one interpretation in an effort to make sense of this complicated rambling.

  15. The 1570/1962 Missal isn’t invalid. But it is deficient by any reading of SC: impoverished lectionary, unreformed Breviary, no permanent diaconate or catechumenate.

    It’s just time to move forward with sound, solid reform. Retire the old Missal in another generation. Unless its advocates are prepared to offer another suggestion for reform in accord with Vatican II. I would like to see it.

    1. @Todd Flowerday – comment #40:

      A permanent deacon can minister in the EF. I often attended a solemn Mass where a permanent deacon ministered almost every solemn Sunday and feast EF Mass. I know that the Lefebvrists have taken issue with the reinstatement of the permanent diaconate, but I have never known traditionalists in union with Rome to be upset by the ministry of married clergy in their church. I’m sure some traditionalists are upset by permanent deacons and other married clergy, but I suspect that very few would leave a particular church over the presence of a permanent deacon at Mass.

      Todd, your desire to see the EF abrogated in a generation is yours. However be aware that EF adherents often have noticeably larger families than most Catholics. Also, these families often produce vocations to the clergy and religious life. To abrogate the EF now or even later will result in a situation similar to 1965 – 2007, when traditionalists battled incessantly with their bishops over access to pre-Consilium Tridentine liturgy. An end to the EF might be an ideological victory for some, but this victory will be Phyrric at best.

  16. I agree wholeheartedly with you Todd.
    Jordan, the problem with some traditionalists is that NOT ONLY do they want the EF but they ALSO want to influence the OF.
    I know a few of them and will withhold further comment about them except to say they’ve been catered to and now feel entitled. You state that they have large families than most, so they’re going to swamp us?
    Doubt it. Maybe they need to take their own advice if they’re not happy. Lord knows they’ve dished it out plenty.

  17. Dale and Todd – you also have Jordan’s:

    “However be aware that EF adherents often have noticeably larger families than most Catholics. Also, these families often produce vocations to the clergy and religious life. To abrogate the EF now or even later……..might be an ideological victory for some, but this victory will be Phyrric at best.”

    Sorry, but even a rudimentary understanding of who and where the 1.3 billion catholics live and worship makes this statement both ridiculous and an over-exaggeration to the nth degree. (BTW – PTB has been around and around on the *trite, undocumented, and disproven* notion that the EF adherents will change the future in terms of catholic family size or conservative religious vocations (e.g. data shows that a few communities have increased novice classes – what the data does not show is that this results in more ordainations or final vows for nuns – and this is such a US or western european dominated data search that it only highlights its meaningless vis a vis the world catholic church.) Nor does it say anything about the church that these folks wind up ministering to (you know, the smaller, purer church)

    Sorry, this and other comments above, IMO, only reveal an effort to grasp at straws.

    1. @Dale R. Rodrigue – comment #42:

      I would not be concerned about traditionalists overtaking the mainstream Roman Rite. Still, despite the small size of the traditionalist movement, the movement is very vocal. An increased number of traditionalists relative to their population suggests that the movement will not decrease in relative influence but increase in relative influence. Todd’s assertion that the EF could be ended in a generation does not align well with a movement which, while still small, maintains a steady if not growing base.

      @Bill deHaas – comment #43:

      You’re right Bill that numerically traditionalism is tiny and relatively not powerful when compared to the 1.3 billion Catholic population. Also, you’re right that the number of traditionalist vocations to the clergy or religious life do not really affect the global Church. Again, however, a rise in vocations might have an effect on the traditionalist movement when it’s considered alone. These questions are all a matter of scale.

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