Cardinal Lehmann criticizes advocates of the old rite of Mass

Wurzburg (dpa/lrs) – Battles flame up repeatedly in the Catholic Church regarding the form of the celebration of Mass. The bishop of Mainz and former president of the German Bishops’ Conference, Cardinal Karl Lehmann, defends the liturgical reformed mandated by the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) against its conservative critics. Whoever is attached to the “time-honored, unchanging forms” does not see “their historical conditionality,” he said on Monday at an event in the lower Frankish see city of [Wurzburg].  

Allgemeine Zeitung

121 comments

    1. Fr. McDonald, I wish you wouldn’t post such unreliable and tendentious reporting. I’m not sure how much you know about the counseling centers in Germany. They were run by every diocese and prevented about 1/3 of the women from having an abortion. Counseling is mandatory before an abortion in Germany. The Catholic centers issued certificates stating that the counseling session was in the service of the protection of life. Every bishop in Germany, not just Cardinal Lehmann, disagreed with Cardinal Ratzinger who stated that such counseling must stop because women used the certificates to get abortions despite the Church’s statement that the Church didn’t intend them to be used for that purpose. When Cardinal Ratzinger pushed back, the bishops continued to resist, so Ratzinger got the Pope to order them. One bishop still resisted – not Lehmann. He was eventually forced into line. I don’t see how any of this makes Lehmann “extremely liberal.”

      This is an extremely difficult moral situation with no easy answers. Now, probably, the abortion rate has increased, but it is without anything which could be interpreted as the Church’s cooperation. Previously, the abortion rate was probably lower, and most didn’t think the Church was cooperating with abortion, but a few could interpret it that way. All sides in the German Catholic debate wanted to reduce and eliminate abortion; no one wanted the Church to cooperate with abortion. Calling anyone an “extreme liberal” is just name-calling. It’s irresponsible.

      I suppose Ratzinger’s position could be characterized as “better 3 abortions with no church involvement than 2 abortions with the appearance of a tiny amount of cooperation with them.” I have some sympathy with that position because I don’t want cooperation with evil, but I’m not entirely convinced because of concern for that third unborn baby. This one isn’t black and white for me.

      awr

      1. Reading what you say, I guess the Church’s participation in these counseling services and certificate issuing (which the article does say does not give permission for an abortion, but some doctors took it to mean that), could be likened to Pope Benedict’s comments on condemns being used by an infected person with HIV/AIDES as a “movement” toward morality; I think though, given what the pope says, that it would be inappropriate for the Church now to give vouchers to those seeking condoms from Catholic institutions.
        Finally being “extremely liberal” isn’t necessarily a derogatory term although I suspect the intent of that article in the free press might have used it in that way, but each of us can decide that for our selves, “they report, we decide” given the origin of the news source.

      2. Fr. Allan,
        “extremely liberal” is a derogatory term for you, as the readers of this blog well know. I wish you’d be honest.
        awr

      3. Fr. Ruff, perhaps you’re not fully aware how genuinely liberal Fr. McDonald himself is. In following his blog at http://southernorderspage.blogspot.com for a while, I’ve not ceased to be impressed by his serious efforts and devotion to celebrating the ordinary form in a truly beautiful and exemplary manner, while at the same time offering a monthly EF Mass with an explicit view to the mutual enrichment of forms that I take to be Pope Benedict’s principal objective with SP (rather than the return of the older Mass in and for itself). In addition to this literally liberal stance, Fr. McDonald is so progressive in his repeated suggestions for updating the 1962 missal and praxis with post-Vatican II innovations that few traditionalists will agree with him. So if Fr. McDonald does not qualify as a liturgical liberal, I’m not sure who would. (Other than me myself, of course, as a layman fully and fervently devoted to both forms of the Roman rite.)

      4. I fancy myself an extreme liberal when it comes to charity and assisting people in accepting the truths of the Church. I think of myself in that term too, from the pastoral point of view. Doctrinally and liturgically, you are correct, this would not fit me. But you miss the mark in your caricature of me as seeing this label completely as negative.

      5. Thank you Henry. But being a product of the 1970’s seminary, I’m all over the place on certain things, not yet fully integrated as a person! But I think I have a little time left before the Lord calls me home to rectify this, at least I hope so.

      6. Allen – I used to say that I’m a liberal only in eating and drinking, though I’ve since given up the latter. So we’re both liberals at least on some issues! Any common ground? 🙂
        awr

  1. Let me take this opportunity, Fr. McDonald, to thank you for steering me to the video Pontifical Mass celebrated according to the 1970 Sacramentary in English produced by the Canons of St. John Cantius in Chicago, which I am watching and listening to right now while browsing.

    Recently I ran into a “rad trad” attempting to argue that the Novus Ordo simply cannot be celebrated in a reverent and beautifully way, certainly not in the vernacular. Of course, I pointed out that the mere fact one has not personally seen a thing, does not prove that it cannot exist. If I can get him to watch this video, surely he will be forced to admit that, whatever his doctrinal opinions may be, the vernacular ordinary form can be celebrated in an exquisitely beautiful and transcendently worshipful manner that is beyond reasonable criticism by anyone who does not heretically deny the validity of any approved form of our rite

    PS. Well, now that I’ve already posted this, I recall that first I saw the SJC video at NLM instead, so let me steer steer you to it, thinking you will agree with what I’ve said about it as exemplary of what the OF in English can aspire to.

    1. Not sure what to think about the video. Some very lovely things indeed, and some ceremonial that I would do differently — in our little ad orientem Episcopal Parish, we preside for the modern rite from the altar, not the chair. Generally, I oppose concerted masses, and certainly would be reticent holding such up as a model. Always more than one way to do things right and do them well — a balancing act to be sure, and one that requires formation in both areas, “right” and “well.”

      All that being said, I still prefer the modern rite celebrated in a modern setting, with modern vestments and tasteful but eclectic music. . . a model I learned from a certain group of Benedictines in central Minnesota who seem to have the balancing act down pat.

      1. Fr. Cody, Despite my great support for the EF, the OF is the Mass that I am most concerned about as it is the Mass that 99.9% of my parishioners who attend Mass attend. But I agree with you that in terms of vestments, a concerted effort should be made to blend these with the style of architecture of the church building. For example, modern vestments look out of place in a neo-Gothic/Romanesque building and the more traditional ones look out of place in a building such as the Benedictines’ one you cite. But many of us celebrate the modern rite (or shall we say reformed rite) in a traditional setting. And just how is it that you Episcopalians can have ad orientem and not blink an eye at it and kneel to boot for Holy Communion and no one blames the EF people for foisting these retro practices into your modern rite? Lutherans do these retro practices too. Are you still stuck in the Reformation period? 🙂

      2. My preference is actually for communion standing and in procession, on both theological and practical grounds. And most Sundays, I distribute to kneeling communicants along the rail, without complaint. 🙂

        In our parish, we’re flexible about ad orientem: we have a nave and chapel with lovely east-facing altars, and we use them on Sunday mornings. We have a very well-built freestanding altar that we move into the nave for a congregation of about 50 on Sunday evenings. During my formation, I never thought I would care to celebrate at an oriented altar. . . surprise, surprise, I’ve come to prefer it; but I’m totally flexible about it. And here’s the rub — arguments get made for this or that, theologically, historically, practically; and I find that most of them have their good points. The bottom line for me is that both ad orientem and versus populum celebration are defensible practices, and the arguments around them are not ditches that I care to die in. I have my preferences, I’ll state my opinion, but I won’t fight about it. Local custom wins on this one, and I don’t have enough invested in the issue to try to bring a congregation to change that — nor do I think most congregations need to change whatever their current practice is.

    2. In all honesty, I don’t really see this as the sort of mutual enrichment that is needed. In fact, it struck me as simply trying to make the OF as much like the EF as possible, without taking advantage of the opportunities presented by the OF. For example, why not chant the prayer of the faithful? Why not sing the canon? Why not take advantage of the opportunity for communion under both species? I also think this is a pretty good example of why an orchestral Sanctus or Agnus Dei does not work very well with the OF — with the celebrants standing at the altar they came across as an interruption and not really part of the liturgy at all.

      Of course, it’s better than a clown Mass.

      1. Karl, I know you were being facetious, but I do think that if you are going to have both forms with the intention of mutal enrichment, that the point you raise should be considered, or at least the Roman Canon prayed in an audible way. Keep in mind that the 1965 reformed missal, while still Tridentine allowed for it to be audible and that the parallel liturgy of the choir doing one thing while the celebrant did his was not to occur any longer. My dream is that we can have the EF form as an option, but using the modern missal with all its options and in the vernacular, the good one we’re about to get. 🙂

      2. Examples of mutual enrichment might include the reconciliation of calendars, a constant headache for parishes where both forms are used. A Pater Noster chanted by the congregation might be found unobjectionable for Solemn Mass. Use of the vernacular only for epistle and Gospel are already allowed and should perhaps become more widespread. Maybe a dialogue penitential rite at the beginning of Mass.

        Progressives may object that these possible “enrichments” of the EF by the OF are trifles: as one attached to the EF, I would say they are not.

        A chanted Canon would utterly undo the EF’s characteristic of sacred silence. Bad idea, IMO.

      3. Mr. Bauerschmidt: I agree with several of the points you make, e.g, sung canon, chanted prayer of the faithful, and communion in both species (which, particularly with intinction as is common at Latin OF Masses, is an example of an OF feature that the EF lacks). I cited this SJC video mainly because it came to my attention this very day as an example of a nevertheless truly beautiful OF Mass.

        I am looking forward more to their forthcoming video using the new English translation and (I assume) beautiful settings of the Ordinary in English (rather than orchestral Latin settings). In the meantime, I might mention the video Anglican Use Liturgy which shows a stunning entirely vernacular OF liturgy with wonderful participation, which – though with some BCP interpolations – leaves no doubt that the ordinary form can be celebrated with that beauty and solemnity that some associate largely with the EF.

      4. Robert

        The sacred silence during the Canon is only true for the EF Masses without music, which is not normatively best; what about the closer-to-normative Masses where the Sanctus and Benedictus are sung during the Canon? What’s the sacred silence there?

      5. One of the more interesting things I once saw at the EF was a priest who said the words of consecration aloud. The rest of the Canon was quiet, but the words of consecration themselves were deliberate and audible. It might have been the intimacy of the setting (I was probably five feet away from the altar), but the rest of the Canon was an inaudible whisper, so I imagine the priest was trying to be audible.

      6. Robert said A Pater Noster chanted by the congregation might be found unobjectionable for Solemn Mass.

        Strange. I remember very well when this practice was introduced in the 1950s. We rejoiced in singing something that had formerly been reserved to the choir.

      7. Paul, our parish, when celebrating the EF, either low or high, everyone sings or says the Pater Noster, we use the simple Gregorian chant for the Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Santus and Agnus Dei, and have taught and cajoled everyone into trying to join the schola in singing these. For the most part they do try. We do the readings in English facing the congregation (although the Gradual is chanted in Latin, when sung) We also sing a vernacular processional and recessional. The processional ends about the time we arrive at the foot of the altar and we encourage the congregation to take the servers’ s parts for the prayers at the foot of the altar. In other words, we expect full, conscious and active participation. But I admit, it is easier when the Mass is in the vernacular, but the EF does allow us to preserve our Latin heritage. As celebrant, I join the choir and congregation in singing the parts and do not say them and jump forward with my parts. I pray the canon in a soft voice, but I wear a microphone, so the people can hear what is being prayed.

      8. Fr. McDonald,

        I suspect there are a number of EF devotees who would be appalled by your EF Mass, thinking, “if you’re going to do all that, why not just do the OF in Latin?” I suppose that I, no EF devotee, would ask the same thing.

      9. F. C. I see your point. But Cardinal Ratzinger way back in 1998 made it clear to a very traditionalist group of Catholics that Vatican II’s SC did apply also to the Tridentine Mass and he made reference to full, conscious and active participation with the chants and spoken parts.
        The EF Mass has a different spirituality, not necessarily better, but different, and those who attend it in my parish as well as myself will attest to its celebration being an enrichment of our Catholic spirituality all the while acknowledging that the OF Mass is our primary food!

      10. Can you say more about the different spirituality? So many of the documents that characterise this — from both “progressive” and “conservative” camps — focus on how one form is superior to the other. Where and how are they different?

      11. Jonathan, I think you could say the same thing about the spirituality of the OF Mass. There is a different “feel” to Mass when it is with contemporary music, versus just organ and traditional choir. Gregorian chant touches a different part of the brain than an English metrical hymn, perhaps it is style but it is also more than that. An OF Mass in Latin would come close certainly to the EF’s spirituality. Maybe it is the ad orientem position, the additional ceremonial aspects of the rubrics that speak of a particular way of relating to God.
        At any rate, I’m not sure that the 1970 missal, with all the current rubrics and amendments in the most recent General Instruction of the Missal envisioned some of the developments of the OF Mass encouraged by liturgists and musicians that moved this Mass and its spirituality further away from its “unreformed” roots, not so much in terms of active participation or simplicity, but ethos. I don’t know how to say that better.

      12. Let me try to answer my own question by identifying a few aspects of the EF that seem fundamentally different to the rubrics and spirit of the OF. I’m looking for aspects that you could not replicate in an OF celebration, without bending the rubrics of the Mass or the GIRM.

        I write this with a lot of hesitation, because my knowledge of the EF is very sketchy … mostly rapid low Masses from childhood and a few more recent celebrations post-SP.

        1) As Jan noted at the bottom of the thread, a different attitude toward women. Veiled headcovering, restrictions on their participation as servers and readers, etc. I have no idea how ‘weak’ or ‘strong’ these restrictions are. Didn’t Cardinal Burke recently reinforce them in a speech?

        2) A more ‘structured’ attitude toward space and objects: people and things that are more ‘objectively sacred’ than others. Differentiated numbers of swings of the thurible, for instance, for the priest, the people and the Blessed Sacrament. A greater degree of hierarchical differentiation on many levels.

        3) More repetition, sometimes in a way that can be confusing; I think Catherine Pickstock writes about this. The OF has a more linear structure.

        4) In the prayers, more emphasis on sin, shame and the distance between God and his creation. As I understand it, there was a fair bit of editing of the (Latin) prayers to reduce this element.

        That’s a start. Are those wrong? What other differences could be identified?

      13. Jonathan,

        I wouldn’t say there’s less emphasis on sin. However, the ways sin are addressed are enlarged and more complex and interrelated. (For example, I’m rather amazed by common EF-enthusiast complaints that the new Lectionary cycle is bereft of “hard sayings” compared to the old Missal lesson cycle; the three-year Lectionary cycle is replete with hard sayings that never saw the light of vernacular day as a Sunday Missal text.) There is also an increased emphasis on sanctification/divinisation/theosis, though without using those terms necessarily.

        To use a metaphor I’ve employed before: if EF enthusiasts tend to emphasize the Mass as re-presentation of Good Friday, and a certain common (but hardly universal) breed of OF enthusiasts tends to emphasize the Mass as a re-presentation of Holy Thursday, both obscure that the longer-standing drift of liturgical reform to emphasize the Mass as a foretaste of the Wedding Banquet of the Lamb, inclusive not only of Holy Thursday and Good Friday, but also Easter, Ascension, Pentecost, et cet. IOW, the eschatological dimension.

      14. Karl, your last paragraph is right on and something I think the Eastern Rite liturgies, even with their very complex ritual and ad orientem celebration, not to mention the iconostasis, have always emphasized. Theirs is certainly the oldest tradition and one that somehow we lost in both the EF and in the OF through the more “literal” examples of celebrants who by their gestures celebrate the Liturgy of the Eucharist as though it was Holy Thursday all over again.

      15. Response to #20: Karl, the sacred silence is maintained during the words of consecration, which constitute the heart of the canon.

        Response to #21 and 23: The EF rubrics are quite clear that the words of consecration are to be pronounced very quietly. To take steps to ensure the congregation’s ability to hear would be contrary to the rubrics, which within the EF have the force of law. There are good reasons to argue that this silence be observed faithfully.

        Response to #22: Paul, in the EF, I believe the Pater Noster is still reserved to the celebrant in Solemn Mass. As I note below, this restriction is frequently honored more in the breach than in the observance. I see nothing wrong with a loosening up here.

        Response to #23 and 24: This description of the EF is very close to my routine experience (except that the people usually do not take part in the prayers at the foot of the altar (I have seen this done in London, however). In all other respects, the congregational participation is not remarkable and is well within the bounds of what popes were urging well before the Council.

        Response to #28: In my EF experience – which is fairly extensive, geographically speaking – most women do not cover. It’s purely a personal decision. I read of disapproving glares, but have never seen one. Point # 2 – agreed. Point #3 – the confusion mentioned goes away with just a little experience. Point #4 – I would characterize it not as sin & shame, but as the creature’s acknowlegement of his lowliness compared to God, and of both his lack of holiness and his desire for same. The Judica me clearly declares that the celebrant is embarking upon a holy thing to be distinguished from the profane world.

        Response to #29: I agree only in part. EF adherents are very conscious of the eschatological dimension, which is vividly presented in the Preface.

  2. Whoever is attached to the “time-honored, unchanging forms” does not see “their historical conditionality,”

    Actually, a great many do. It’s just that, in this fallen world, they see also other possibilities far less attractive. All believing Christians know that this sublunary world is passing away. Traddies are no less capable of praying “come Lord Jesus”. They have their own faults but are happily immune to the liberal vice of hankering to immanentize the eschaton.

  3. Perhaps, we should examine the reasons why the Holy Father issued his MP. According to Msgr. Guido Marini:

    “As for the motu proprio cited, considering this with serene attention and without ideological views, together with the letter presenting it addressed by the pope to the bishops of the whole world, a precise, twofold intention emerges. First of all, there is the intention of making it easier to reach “a reconciliation in the bosom of the Church”; and in this sense, as has been said, the motu proprio is a beautiful act of love for the unity of the Church. In the second place – and this fact must not be forgotten – its aim is that of fostering a mutual enrichment between the two forms of the Roman rite: in such a way, for example, that in the celebration according to the missal of Paul VI (the ordinary form of the Roman rite) ‘will be able to demonstrate, more powerfully than has been the case hitherto, the sacrality which attracts many people to the former usage.'”

    Msgr. Marini goes on further to say that:

    As for terms like “preconciliar” and “postconciliar” that are used by some, it seems to me that these belong to an outdated language, and if they are used with the intention of indicating a discontinuity in the Church’s journey, I maintain that they are mistaken and typical of highly reductive ideological views. There are “old things and new things” that belong to the treasury of the Church of all time, and must be considered as such. The wise man is able to find both of these in his treasury, without appealing to other criteria apart from those of the Gospel and the Church. Not all that is new is true, nor is all that is old. The truth spans old and new, and it is for this that we must strive, without prejudice. The Church lives according to the law of continuity in virtue of which it recognizes development rooted in tradition. What is most important is that everything work together so that the liturgical celebration truly is the…

  4. Here is the rest of the quote:

    the sacred mystery, of the crucified and risen Lord who becomes present in his Church, reenacting the mystery of salvation and calling us, in the logic of an authentic and active participation, to share to the full in his own life, which is a life given in love to the Father and to his brothers, a life of holiness.»

    The entire article can be read here:

    http://chiesa.espresso.repubblica.it/articolo/205488?eng=y

  5. Thanks, Michelle, for the link to this very informative Magister article.

    “As for the motu proprio cited, considering this with serene attention and without ideological views”

    Indeed, a prescription for avoidance of unseemly contention, on both sides.

    ”its aim is that of fostering a mutual enrichment between the two forms of the Roman rite: in such a way, for example, that in the celebration according to the missal of Paul VI (the ordinary form of the Roman rite) ‘will be able to demonstrate, more powerfully than has been the case hitherto, the sacrality which attracts many people to the former usage.’”

    How could it be said better? Except perhaps with a picture worth a thousand words:

    http://data.kataweb.it/kpmimages/kpm3/misc/chiesa/2008/01/24/91642.jpeg

    Of course, this is an OF Mass, unless Pope Benedict has surreptitiously celebrated an EF Mass in the Sistine Chapel.

  6. Cardinal L>Whoever is attached to the “time-honored, unchanging forms” does not see “their historical conditionality,” <

    Father, it is difficult for me to see this criticism as not ingenuous.. Has the Cardinal ever criticized 'attachment' to Gospel Masses? Or
    Cardinal's Schonborn's balloon Mass? Or his bierfest Masses?

    I ask because I really doubt it. I don't think progressives criticize attachment to any kind of Mass….except the EF.

    1. George Andrews,

      This is a discussion board for the whole world, not a classroom where I’m teacher. Why do you address just me? Please just add your contribution to the discussion for everyone to read, and don’t expect me to reply to your comments unless if I think I have something to add to the group discussion.

      awr

  7. Cardinal Lehmann is right, and he needs to write a pastoral letter or similar on the subject, so that we can have more of his thinking than is embodied in a brief quote or sound bite.

    On two fronts, some pastoral attention and good leadership is needed. You don’t simply create a two-form Roman Rite ex nihilo and then do nothing to sort out the problems this engenders.

    (1) The people who celebrate the Ordinary Form are being “poached upon” and it’s now open season on every aspect of what the reform accomplished. Hence what was once taken for granted needs to be upheld in a more conscious and committed manner, not merely taken for granted. Some genuine, principled leadership, not just a passive attitude toward the reform, is needed.

    (2) The issue is not just celebrating the Extraordinary Form; it’s also what people think they are doing when they celebrate it. There is a considerable body of FALSEHOODS about the EF — eternal Mass never changing, celebrated in the catacombs, the one bearer of authentic Catholic tradition, etc. etc, etc. — that cannot be tolerated because these ideas are frankly toxic, and untrue. Again, good pastoral leadership is essential to keep this EF from becoming the Trojan horse by which we mainstream crank opinions that do no credit to liturgy or the people of God.

    1. Some genuine, principled leadership, not just a passive attitude toward the reform, is needed.

      Agree wholeheartedly. “Because I said so” was not adequate then, and it isn’t adequate now.

      There is a considerable body of FALSEHOODS about the EF —

      I’ll say. Similarly, there’s no shortage of misinformation about the OF — but we don’t reduce advocacy from any direction to the lowest common denominator, nor resort to caricatures, unless we’re more interested in dismissing than engaging.

  8. Let’s consider what the excerpt above said:

    Cardinal Lehman is defending the OF from its critics.

    Isn’t it necessary to take this into account? For all the hot air that is expended, saying how innocent, non-aggressive, and lovely all advocates of the EF are (and I know there is a difference between people who are enthusiasts and people who are aggressive), there is also something else going on. Advocates of the EF are indeed attacking the OF, because they are hoping to undermine and eventually replace it.

    I’ve heard many similar stories on this side of the Atlantic, unfortunately.

    A “free market” capitalist idea of competing liturgies has been set up by Pope Benedict. Frankly, I do think this breeds problems.

  9. Rita, of course there are some odd ball EF advocates who think it possible and desirable to replace the OF, and some who harbor crank ideas like the straw men you mention above. But these types aren’t sufficiently important on the liturgical scene for you or me or anyone else to take them seriously.

    Because they are mostly on the outside looking in, on the current movement to build on the post Vatican II liturgy by reconnecting it with the tradition that clearly the Council never meant to abandon. The cranks are mostly the older folks, whereas most of the dynamism in EF circles comes from young people don’t date back far enough to be nostalgic, or to care about the outworn ideas you suggest.

    Indeed, most of the folks I know personally (both lay and especially clerical) in EF communities are devoted to good reverent liturgy in both forms — I know them also in their OF parishes and mine. They may well think your favorite crank ideas are even crankier than you think they are.

    At any rate, it does not promote convergence towards improved liturgy from both sides, to rely on straw man arguments that do not fit any of the legitimate participants in the discussion, and don’t address any of the real issues between them. Folks who in good faith discussion and even argument are “united by more than divides them”.

    1. CH, here we are at a disadvantage, once again, because of the brevity of the quote and summary of the situation. What are the arguments? Are they aimed at undermining the OF? One cannot say with certainty because we haven’t got the terms of the discussion in front of us. But evidently the Cardinal thinks they are. Going from what the Cardinal said about “historical conditionality” and “unchanging forms” it seems to me the examples I raised and which you regard as straw men are alive and well. I am not sure how you decide who are the “legitimate participants in the discussion,” but the fact that there must be some discrimination is fair.

      1. I agree, Rita, that the locus and terms of discussion need to be more carefully specified. I’d assume that Cardinal Lehman was thinking primarily of the situation in Germany and France, where I understand that a majority of TLM adherents may be SSPX members, and I have no reason to doubt that what he says is accurate regarding them.

        On the other hand, I am thinking of EF adherents in the U.S. where I think a majority share the views Fr. McDonald and I have expressed in this thread, so the “straw men” positions you suggested represent an absurd caricature of them.

      2. CH, How do we know that you and Fr. Allan are a representative sample? Could you not be exceptional, rather than the norm? I am asking sincerely.

      3. A reasonable question, Rita. No doubt, there are still some old-style TLM-only types and TLM-fringe groups around who maintain views that informed Catholics of whatever stripe regard as absurd, or at least downright peculiar. However, these “sad trads” seem much more common on the internet than in real life.

        At any rate, in many or most EF groups of this country, these more rigid types are increasingly outnumbered by what might be called “JP II Catholics” – younger post Vatican II Catholics who carry little or no pre-JP II baggage and preconceptions. They grew up in the OF and their more recent affection for the EF is non-exclusive, since they frequently continue to attend the OF as well. Typically, they appreciate beauty and reverence in liturgy of both forms. The extent to which they find something in the EF, which (for them) is absent in the OF, depends upon the individual and/or their local situation.

        All this holds still more so for EF celebrants. The half dozen priests in my local diocese who have learned in recent years to celebrate the EF are equally devoted to proper celebration of the OF. With one exception, all are dynamic young “JP II priests” ordained within the past decade. And similarly with the several diocesan seminarians I know, who say that at least of their fellow seminarians expect to celebrate both the OF and the EF.

        Obviously, these facts add up to a picture that belies the “rad trad” stereotype that some unfamiliar with contemporary EF Catholics may take too seriously.

  10. As someone who loves Latin and chant, my concern is that many EF people do not seem to be interested in the LATIN OF. I can understand why they might not be interested in the English OF, either because of the modern music and/or the manner in which it is done. But if one does a LATIN OF chanted Mass it brings with it a lot of the advantages of the EF plus the flexibility of the OF, e.g. a chanted Eucharistic Prayer, Lord’s Prayer, etc.

    Almost all the liberals who have spent an evening at my house listening to Latin chants bemoan that they are no longer done in our churches. But I am sure that all of them, like myself, don’t want to go back to the EF. We like the OF; many of us who know Latin would like it just as well or even better if it were in Latin with chant, etc.

    It seems to me that EF people are painting themselves into their own isolated corner by spending a lot of time criticizing the poor choices that many have made when implementing the English OF, and exalting their love of the EF over the OF. A wiser strategic move would be for communities who currently celebrating a chanted EF to offer a chanted OF. If I saw such an announcement in my area, I would promptly check it out, and likely attend and join the choir if I could work it into my life.

    I know that CMAA and others seem to want to do both the Latin EF and the Latin OF, but people like myself and many other Latin and chant lovers just do not buy into that. Few of us think the Latin EF and the Latin OF are equally good.

    My own suspicion as a sociologist is that the EF is just a way of creating a sectarian community that views itself as different and superior to the rest of us Catholics. Those who like the EF might try testing this out by asking themselves if they would be willing to sing a Latin OF in a community full of liberals who also want married priests and women priests.

    1. Jack, every Sunday I attend an OF Mass celebrated ad orientem, with chant, with Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, and Agnus Dei in Greek/Latin. Choir, incense, torchbearers — the works. It’s nice — so nice that many visitors ask if it’s EF. But it still doesn’t satisfy as the EF does.

      You must not imagine that traditionalists are all about the Latin. If forced to give up Latin, ad orientem, sacred silence, etc., I believe many would sooner surrender Latin (if grudgingly) than other elements. The traddie objections to the OF are structural much more than cosmetic.

      You are quite mistaken to suppose that those attached to the EF do so as a bid for exclusivity and moral superiority. They’re grateful for access to the liturgy they cherish and sorry for those who don’t get it. The EF parishes I’ve visited in the US and abroad are the very opposite of exclusive, with a readiness to welcome, assist, and engage the stranger.

      1. I’m curious as to the structural deficiencies of the OF. Is it the prayer of the faithful? The absence of the last gospel? The canon said aloud? The inclusion of an Old Testament reading? Most other differences would be masked by being said silently, but perhaps the mere knowledge that the offertory prayers were different would be a problem.

        I really am curious. What are the objectionable structural features?

      2. My sense is that most traditionalists regret the truncation of the prayers at the foot of the altar that resulted in the OF penitential rite, as well as the abbreviation of the Kyrie.

        I have never heard an objection to the addition of a first reading — but of course the 3-year lectionary cycle is a major departure from the EF that disrupts seasonal stability. Though it’s good to hear sacred scripture proclaimed, traddies point out that the Mass isn’t Bible study – and in any case, numerous elements of the Old Testament are embedded throughout the EF, particularly during Lent.

        Speaking of Lent, I have already mentioned the incompatibility in calendars.

        The OF offertory prayers are a source of particular objection – not only for their composition but because of what they have displaced in the EF. The loss of silence I have mentioned repeatedly. The abolition of the subdiaconal order regularly creates challenges for parishes wishing to celebrate Solemn Mass.

        The multiplicity of OF Eucharistic prayers is a common point of objection in itself, as well as being part of the overall menu of options that practically beg the celebrant to bring his “creativity” with him to the altar.

        And since we’re talking about structural differences, it should be mentioned that a typical trad complaint about the OF is precisely its lack of structure: too many options, lack of clarity about how things are to be done, and the stripping out of old rubrics that are a challenge to uphold but ensure that the liturgy is enriched by layer upon layer of eloquent signs.

        These are structural departures from the EF that spring readily to mind.

  11. I think that the Cardinal is consistent with Mediator Dei (65-68) in opposing ‘archaeologism’.
    If you try to find references to him through Google you will find that he seems to have offended those more attached to tradition. Father Allan McDonald may be doing us a service in letting us know this: he does not seem to have endorsed attacks on the Cardinal.
    Paragraph 215 of the encyclical encourages us lay people to learn about liturgy and paragraph 7 regrets that some take little or no interest. I suspect that many readers of the blog are keen to understand different points of view.
    This is not done by attacking the character of those who challenge our own preferences.
    It seems to me that by encouraging mutual enrichment the Pope is looking to improve both forms of worship. He may also be encouraging us to study the liturgy and understand it better. Perhaps the OF will be the normal form and the EF used on special occasions with the congregation taught to appreciate the extra devotions and so better appreciate the OF. Or maybe we will have a partly vernacular EF as seems to have been the case for a short time prior to the introduction of the reformed Mass.
    Whatever happens it seems that excessive ritual will alienate some and insufficient serenity will offend others. Mutual enrichment should help make our worship unite rather than divide us.

  12. “Pope Benedict’s comments on condemns being used by an infected person with HIV/AIDS as a “movement” toward morality;” — Indeed condemns are a very ineffective prophylactic.

    It is not just “oddballs” who want to scrap the OF on the basis that it is riddled with heresy and the product of a freemason plot (shades of Franco) — Pope Benedict’s 2003 letter to Heinz-Lother Barth foresees that the result of reviving the EF will be that a new rite will emerge closer to the EF than to the OF but retaining some good elements that the OF introduced. http://josephsoleary.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/11/a-frightening-l.html

  13. A few thoughts regarding that video that C Henry kindly provided.

    First, where I live you can find the OF celebrated with with every bit as much reverence (and, generally, better music) in at least a dozen churches on any Sunday of the year. And there are choices: everything in Latin, combination of English and Latin, ad orientem or not, with or without birettas, etc. In some of these Masses the berakah offertory prayers, which apparently annoy some traditionalists, are said silently.

    For the most part, these Masses are celebrated in strict accordance with the General Instruction of the Roman Missal.

    Second, I would echo Fritz Bauerschmidt’s reaction to this particular Mass. To me it came across as fussy and overly embellished. And there were bits that contravened the GIRM, at least the UK edition. The ministers aren’t supposed to genuflect each time they pass the tabernacle: §274 If, however, the tabernacle with the Most Blessed Sacrament is present in the sanctuary, the priest, the deacon, and the other ministers genuflect when they approach the altar and when they depart from it, but not during the celebration of Mass itself.

    During the Creed, isn’t everyone meant to stand and to bow at the incarnatus, not to sit there as if at a concert? Maybe the rules are different in the US. As beautiful as some of the choral Creed settings are, our priests refuse to use them; they want the entire congregation to sing, which we do in plainsong.

    (By the way, what was that weird choral Mass setting? It sounded like Hummel imitating Salieri imitating Mozart.)

    Finally, given that a beautiful and reverent Mass can be celebrated in the OF, in complete adherence to the rules, what more does the EF provide? Like Fritz, I seek understanding here.

    1. Jonathan, the OF Mass provides many options and flexibility as witnessed in the video, but the video is far from what most parishes could do every Sunday–it might be done for a special event. Cardinal Ratzinger said that an OF Mass celebrated ad orientem and an EF Mass would be more similar to one another than some of the more creative forms of the OF Mass compared together. I think the video proves that point.
      Why have the EF Mass? It gives us another option. We celebrated it on All Souls, once a month as a high Mass on Sunday and each Tuesday as a Low Mass and once in a while for very special occasions where the choir will do a special setting Mass.
      But I have to admit, in my previous parish we did celebrate a completely Gregorian Chanted Latin Mass in the Ordinary Form once a month. It was celebrated toward the people, exactly as an OF Mass would be celebrated in English, but entirely in Latin except for the readings. It was a Saturday night Vigil and people loved it and came from all over the city for it, others hated it and skipped the Vigil once a month. Now that we celebrate the EF monthly, we don’t celebrate a Latin OF and I miss that. When the OF Mass in Latin is celebrated ad orientem, most laity don’t realize that it is the new order of the Mass.

  14. In reference to Fr Allan’s interesting post (#23) about his celebrations of the EF, here are comparisons with our Latin OF Mass.

    everyone sings or says the Pater Noster

    Same for us, in Latin. I thought the congregation was once forbidden from saying the Pater in the EF, though I remember saying it in “dialogue Masses” back in the Jurassic era. More recently I have been shushed by mantilla ladies at EF celebrations for joining in.

    we use the simple Gregorian chant for the Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Santus and Agnus Dei, and have taught and cajoled everyone into trying to join the schola in singing these.

    Our choir sings the Kyrie, Gloria – never the Credo – Sanctus and (usually) the Agnus Dei. When the choir is absent, in August, the congregation sings them in Gregorian chant.

    We do the readings in English facing the congregation (although the Gradual is chanted in Latin, when sung) We also sing a vernacular processional and recessional.

    Our processional is an Anglican hymn except in Advent and Lent, when the choir chant the Latin introit. No recessional: after the dismissal we chant the prayer for the Queen (Domine, salvam fac) and the ministers leave the sanctuary while the postlude is being played.

    we encourage the congregation to take the servers’s parts for the prayers at the foot of the altar.

    Doesn’t apply to the OF.

    In other words, we expect full, conscious and active participation.

    Your parish sounds great, I’d love to visit.

    I pray the canon in a soft voice, but I wear a microphone, so the people can hear what is being prayed.

    There are a number of prayers in our OF celebration that the congregation can’t hear at all – the offertory prayers, for instance. They can see the priest praying them (we don’t celebrate ‘ad orientem’) but the prayers are silent.

    * * *

    Overall I’m struck by the similarity of these celebrations. It would be interesting to see descriptions from other parishes.

    1. In the EF, the Pater Noster may be chanted by the people in all but Solemn Mass (I believe). This restriction is frequently set aside even in Solemn Mass — everyone chants with the celebrant. I don’t see anything wrong with this.

      1. Folks, the documents are available. You can go look at them. It’s really outrageous that people keep posting based on their own personal opinions or recollections of what their parish did in the 1950’s.

        You can look at numbers 25 through 29 of De musica sacra et sacra liturgia and read what the rules are. There are varying levels of participation and the leaders of each community get to decide what level is to be undertaken (which is why you will be rightfully told to stop singing/or reciting loudly if you start doing it in a community where it is not the practice.)

        There is a letter from Ecclesia Dei saying that the congregation may sing the Pater Noster at Sung Masses, but this ruling does not oblige other communities to allow it.

  15. Then there’s that nagging justice and equality issue: why would someone opt for a rite that strictly excludes females from even carrying a candle? I wonder if proponents of the EF are troubled by such things, and if not, why not? I sometimes think that people who scurry about seeking the most “reverent” Mass might be better served by some catechesis on the values we hold about lay ministry, equality of the sexes, and inclusion. I should think such basic gospel values would take priority in our wrestling with which rite offers the most reverence and personal satisfaction. Allowing the EF has highlighted a clash in ecclesiologies, and it didn’t have to be that way.

      1. Todd, the reservation of service in the sanctuary to men is very much a liturgical issue, among other things.

        The admission of women is ill-advised because it discourages vocations.

        It’s ill-advised because it obscures a sacramental understanding of the priesthood.

        It’s ill-advised because it obscures a sacramental understanding of the Sacrifice of the Mass.

        It’s ill-advised because it obscures the complementary sexual distinctiveness of men and women.

        It’s ill-advised because it disparages the dignity of womanhood as inadequate and unfulfilling.

        It’s ill-advised because it can implant in girls futile expectations that cannot be fulfilled.

        It’s ill-advised because it misrepresents the participatio actuosa prescribed for the faithful as a call for lay busyness, clericalism that disparages as inferior the liturgical participation of lay faithful assisting quietly from the pew.

        It’s ill-advised because service in the sanctuary is misrepresented as an exercise of rights and of power.

      2. Yes, a significant string of assertions, most of which strike me as a neo-Gnosticism, and not Christianity, let alone Catholicism.

        I do tend to think that the issue of women leaders at liturgy is not well-served by making it a justice issue. And yet, discernment of gifts in the Pauline tradition, and God’s continual tweaking of human cultural, political, and social expectations would seem to place Christian restrictionists on very unsteady ground.

        That said, service at liturgy has always been a function of the gifts and abilities of the faithful–the ordained priesthood is derived from baptism, not a cultic worship.

        The Biblical witness, as well as that of martyrs has included women, from the earliest days of Judaism. That self-sacrifice is limited to men is, frankly, heretical.

        Women serving the Church through personal and spiritual gifts is indeed parts of our identification as believers. Attempting to frustrate this expression actually does harm to the notion that men and women have, in general, complementary gifts.

        That female liturgical leadership presents some sort of falsehood to girls is a circular argument.

        The implied definition of participation is simply all wrong.

        This manifesto may be aligned to the interests and feelings of some traditionalists, but it is certainly non-Catholic, and has no basis in tradition.

      3. neo-Gnosticism, and not Christianity

        Huh. Speaking of sweeping assertions. Maybe Todd will share some specifics, so I can have the charges read to me before I mail in my baptismal certificate to be cancelled.

        The priesthood is male. It can’t be otherwise. Priestly maleness isn’t arbitrary; it’s sacramental. It signifies. That signifying power is lost when the maleness of the sanctuary is compromised. If altar servers are indiscriminately male and female, the maleness of the celebrant is reduced from a sign to something approaching a mere accident. The maleness of the inferior ministers in the EF is a reflection and echo of the celebrant who’s alter Christus, the Bridegroom at the wedding feast of the Lamb. Signs have been stripped out of the post-conciliar liturgies so ferociously that people have lost the ability to discern their meaning. Yet signs have always been an element of God’s ways with his people, including our Lord’s proclamation of the Gospel.

      4. Robert Ramirez, your statements could equally validly be used in the following argument, which we all agree is obviously false: “Maybe women should stay out of church altogether. Their presence might compromise the sacramental nature of that holy place. At least, they should stay away from the Mass, which is ultimately sacramental: its meaning is compromised when women are present. If members of the congregation are indiscriminately male and female, the maleness of the celebrant is reduced from a sign to something approaching a mere accident. The maleness of the assembly should be a reflection and echo of the celebrant who’s alter Christus, the Bridegroom at the wedding feast of the Lamb.”

      5. Robert:

        Your assertion about maleness signifying sacrifice et cet. is a string of conclusory statements.

        Now, I get that there are going to be conflicting assumptions here, and assumptions, being pre-rational, are not readily argued in a persuasive way.

      6. Your assertion about maleness signifying sacrifice et cet.

        Excuse me; I believe I argued that the maleness of the prist signifies Christ. That is not exactly a groundbreaking observation on my part.

        My text is Exodus 12:5. “Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male.”

        Just sayin.

      7. Actually, Robert’s assertion that the celebrant priest is a male sign (or a sign of maleness), a sign of the Bridegroom, might lead to the conclusion that congregations should be composed exclusively of women, as signs of feminine receptivity. Men in the sanctuary, women in the nave. Any other men, go to the pub or stay home and watch TV.

      8. LOL, Jonathan.

        Holy Orders is a sacrament — so it signifies. The lay state is not, and does not. So while it’s the practical rule in some cultures that most of the churchgoing faithful are women, there’s no serious argument that as such their presence is sacramental.

        As members of the Church espoused to Christ, we all participate in the female receptivity you mention. Regardless of sex, we are all called to hear, to obey, and to receive with gratitude (for which the Greek is Eucharist).

      9. An excessively syllogistic approach to using the image of the Bridegroom creates creates tensions with the implications of the teaching of St Gregory of Nanzianus that whatever Christ assumed, he redeemed, and that what he redeemed could image him. Et cet.

      10. “Holy Orders is a sacrament — so it signifies. The lay state is not, and does not.”

        This statement as it stands suggests a deficient understanding of Baptism and Confirmation and sacramental character.

        Why do you think the lay state is not constituted by a sacrament, Robert?

      11. Holy Orders is a sacrament, but so is Baptism! Girls and women can be baptized in spite of their lack of maleness.

      12. Karl, when you find a text in which Gregory argues for the ordination of women, I hope you’ll bring it to my attention.

        This statement as it stands suggests a deficient understanding of Baptism…

        Um…not it doesn’t, Rita. It suggests that one can be baptized and belong to either the lay or clerical state, but not both. Baptism imparts a sacramental character. Holy Orders imparts an different, additional character. We do not re-baptize ordinands.

      13. Here’s what you said, Robert:

        “Holy Orders is a sacrament — so it signifies. The lay state is not, and does not. So while it’s the practical rule in some cultures that most of the churchgoing faithful are women, there’s no serious argument that as such their presence is sacramental.”

        The presence of the faithful at Mass is indeed sacramental however. The serious argument that you seem unaware of or unwilling to acknowledge is that the faithful are baptized and confirmed, and that this confers on them a sacramental character. They participate in the liturgy in Christ, as the Body of Christ. If that does not signify something in a sacramental sense, neither does priestly ordination.

        Your idea seems to be that the priest signifies something and the people signify nothing. Compare this to numerous magisterial documents which affirm the assembly gathered at worship as a sign of the Church, the kingdom of God, the community of the redeemed, the eschatological banquet, etc. etc.

        If you want to say that the presence of the baptized as women doesn’t signify something different from what the presence of baptized men signifies, I’d be sympathetic, because the baptism of males and females is the same. But that’s not what you said. I stand by my critique.

      14. Wow… sort of glad I missed this conversation.

        Two points: First, baptism is part of the way in which the church “orders” itself, and all the members of the church are laos hagios theo, the holy people of God. Ordained and lay cannot be opposed, because at a very fundamental level all have the identity of being “lay” — including the ordained. Both are orders of ministry, differing essentially and not only in grade, but equal in dignity. And ordination doesn’t obliterate the character of baptism.

        Following on this, of the last assertion in the list that started this sub-thread, I will say: service in the sanctuary by women in any church is an exercise of rights and of power — rights and power given in baptism, confirmed by the church, and usually guaranteed by canon law.

        Second, in the last year, working through Aquinas — yes, Aquinas — on anthropology and on sacraments, I’ve come to believe that all the sacraments operate at the most basic level of the humanum. Being sexed biologically is a necessary characteristic of the humanum, but the chromosomal marker (XX or XY) itself does not affect the essence of the humanum. In other words, I’m convinced that the proper matter for any of the six sacraments after baptism is quite simply a baptized human being.

        I know, I know. . . I’m an Episcopalian, so I can get away with both believing it and saying it. But I am utterly convinced it holds true in any church that understands both baptism and holy orders to be sacraments, and any other reading vitiates the meaning of the sacraments as means of grace.

  16. Our OF Masses have female altar servers, readers and EMHCs. There were female servers at Pope Benedict’s Masses on his recent visit; if it’s good enough for him …

  17. Jan, it is just that attitude that has driven many to the EF. The tradition of this Mass still holds that serving at the altar is a means of helping young men to discern a calling. It’s not about equality. It’s about purpose. Now some may see any restrictions as a barrier to be broken, but that’s so 20th century.

    1. Interesting, Michael. Perhaps you can answer a question that’s been nagging me for a while: Who or what says that God can’t call women to this or that ministry, or Holy Orders? Many of the arguments and commentaries that I’ve seen strike me as humans telling God what to do, which I sort of think isn’t a good idea…

  18. To take a personal attempt at questions from FC Bauerschmidt (# 48) and Jonathan Day (#52) about preferences for the older form of Mass (EF Mass if you prefer). I attend a lot of Masses in both forms.
    What I hear from people who attend mainly the older form are preferences for: (1) the prayers at the foot of the altar, including Psalm 42 (Judica me), as an expression of unworthiness to approach the holy of holies; (2) the Offertory prayers (said inaudibly by the priest), which speak very explicitly of the propitiatory sacrifice to be offered, (3) exclusive use of the Roman Canon, (4) receiving Holy Communion on the tongue while kneeling, (5) yes, the Last Gospel. There’s also a preference for the older temporal cycle with the Sundays after Epiphany, after Pentecost, and the season of Septuagesima.

    Speaking only for myself, I’d say another aspect of the newer form is not only the introduction of changes, but the effective suppression of immemorial customs of. Yes, Vatican II said there should be more Scripture readings, but did the millennial course of Epistles and Gospels need to be done away with? Could it be an option? Did Sacrosanctum Consilium mandate new Eucharistic Prayers? Yet a plethora of new ones were introduced, with the effect (in my experience) that the Roman Canon is very rarely used. I understand the Offertory prayers and Last Gospel are relatively late additions to the Roman Missal, but had widespread local use long before Trent. Why could these not be options?

    Finally, the newer form Masses that Jonathan Day describes: Where I live, these options were practically unheard of from 1970-2005. Interestingly, now that Summorum Pontificum has hit the streets, some of these options are seen more. Before 2005, when the use of Latin or chant was suggested, pastors tended to look over their shoulder and mutter darkly about the chancery; either that or a pat on the head and “too bad, we don’t do that any more.”

    1. Just some random thoughts in reply:
      (1) the prayers at the foot of the altar, including Psalm 42 (Judica me), as an expression of unworthiness to approach the holy of holies;
      So these same people prefer the low Mass to the high Mass, since these prayers would be inaudible at high Mass?

      (2) the Offertory prayers (said inaudibly by the priest), which speak very explicitly of the propitiatory sacrifice to be offered,
      Again, these would be inaudible. Is it simply the knowledge that these are the prayers being said?

      (3) exclusive use of the Roman Canon,
      Again, I wonder why this would matter to people, since they can’t hear it?

      (4) receiving Holy Communion on the tongue while kneeling,
      One can do the former at the OF, and the latter is not entirely unheard of.

      (5) yes, the Last Gospel.
      One could read this to oneself (in Latin even) during, say, the closing hymn. What exactly is the appeal in having the priest do it?

      I really do not at all intend to be flip in my replies. But I note that all of the things you mention are things that, in the EF, more or less concern the priest only. I know that there are people to whom it matter what the priest is saying, even if they can’t hear or understand it, but I suspect that this is a rather intellectualized approach that is restricted to a few. I can’t help but think that for many there is something else that is at the root of the appeal.

      1. F.C. Your last paragraph does touch some of the differences between the OF and the EF. The reformed Mass is very straightforward and touches that part of the brain that wants information, understands everything and nothing is left to the imagination, even the religious imagination.
        The EF Mass touches that part of the brain that seeks mystery and understands beyond the intellectual capacity. Some people go into religious ecstasy listening to Latin Gregorian Chant although they may not understand a word of Latin. The same would be true of music with no lyrics.

      2. FCB, sometimes the faithful take it upon themselves to participate in the prayers at the foot of the altar, even though chant or a hymn makes this inaudible. If you’re experienced, you can pretty much tell where the celebrant is just by watching him. I saw this only today.

        WRT the Offertory prayers and Canon — here too the EF faithful have a sense of ownership even in what’s inaudible. They consider these prayers more worthy than the OF, and no doubt derive spiritual support from the knowledge that they are praying words sanctified by centuries of use. It is a sentiment, but sentiment is part of being human, and the liturgy rightly takes trouble to appeal to the whole person.

        One could read [the Last Gospel] to oneself

        Indeed. And at the OF, the faithful could do the same with the first reading. The Prologue of John is special, in a sense a super-concentrated proclamation of the entire Gospel. Entirely fitting that it be running through our heads as we walk out the door.

      3. In response, I like C Henry Edward’s cite below from Pope Pius X when he said:

        “If you wish to hear Mass as it should be heard, you must follow with eye, heart, and mouth all that happens at the Altar. Further, you must pray with the Priest the holy words said by him. You have to associate your heart with the holy feelings which are contained in these words and in this manner you ought to follow all that happens on the Altar. When acting in this way, you have prayed Holy Mass.”

        I don’t see how these prayers concern the priest only.

      4. “If you wish to hear Mass as it should be heard, you must follow with eye, heart, and mouth all that happens at the Altar. Further, you must pray with the Priest the holy words said by him. You have to associate your heart with the holy feelings which are contained in these words and in this manner you ought to follow all that happens on the Altar. When acting in this way, you have prayed Holy Mass.”

        I love that quote and I see it as a great justification of my wish to see what the priest is doing, hear what he is saying, understand the words, say them myself in my head and heart for the words that are familiar enough, and participate further by saying some responses as well. Isn’t that the point of the OF?

  19. I see Robert has narrowed the discussion to speak of an all-male priesthood. I was writing about the more general terms of women in liturgical roles: server, choir director, sacristan, lector, etc..

    If the proximity of women is a danger to the Catholic priesthood in such a way, the edifice is far more fragile than a council reform (or un-reform) can be expected to tackle.

    1. The EF has always known women sacristans. I have never heard of an objection. Nor can I imagine an objection to a woman choir director. What the EF requires for semiotic integrity is maleness among liturgical ministers. Surely the sex of whoever’s at the organ console is irrelevant.

      Relax, Todd, I’m not a gynophobe. Even of my wife, though I do have to sign off now to run to the store for her.

      1. Sacristans and choir directors are liturgical ministers in anyone’s book. If you look back in history far and wide enough, I’m sure you’ll find criticism of those who would include women in the loft, chancel, or sacristy.

        I don’t get anxious about the sometimes-convoluted theology that arises from a justification of how-things-are.

        If anything, I found the statement above ignorant of baptism and confirmation to be deeply amusing in its … quaint way.

        That women are more religious than men is nearly universally true regardless of religion, culture, and even the misogyny of the experience. Does that suggest that religiosity is more a female quality than male? I wouldn’t argue it, but to be consistent, some might have to suggest it.

  20. The last Gospel? What are people thinking of? There was no meaning whatever in flogging this text to death at the end of every Mass. I wonder what prompted people to tack it on in the first place.

    The OF leaves nothing to the imagination? Well, of course one could say exactly the same thing of the EF — except that its inaudibility allows the faithful more time to pursue their private pieties. The OF certainly has enlarged the Catholic imagination by exposing it to the power of Scripture, as opposed to an allegedly millennial diet of a few epistles and gospels. These captious and spurious objections explain the disastrous quality of the new translations, which are based on similar reasoning.

    1. “I wonder what prompted people to tack it on in the first place.”

      Joe, you ask a good question. For tacked on it was. The reading of the last gospel was a pious practice that grew up during the middle ages as a personal devotion of the priest after Mass was over. It was seen as a kind of blessing. The first time it entered the liturgy was in the twelfth century. The Tridentine reform made this private reading public and obligatory.

      It also allowed other gospels to be read from time to time. An elaborate method of deciding which gospel should be read, depending on the saint’s day, was in place until 1955 when Pius XII simplified the rubrics.

      It is interesting that this should be considered hoary tradition, given its late entry into the liturgy, its origin in private devotion, the recentness of its alteration, the complete lack of interest in re-instituting the more complicated rubrics, the fact that it is tacked on, the lack of any real or compelling reason to read it, etc. The council had a mandate to remove “useless repetitions.” Was this gospel a blessing? The liturgy already had a blessing. Was this a gospel reading? The liturgy already had a gospel reading. And so on.

      The sort of reflections this text engendered historically are just what you might think: theological embroideries long after the fact that have little to do with liturgical tradition as such and much more to do with fantasy and justifications for something presumed to be unchanged and unchanging.

      1. Of course the Last Gospel was eliminated in the 1965 Roman Missal which was still the Tridentine Mass. All of the accretions you mention did become institutionalized thus everyone did them.
        But shouldn’t we also speak about things that are creeping into the reformed Mass since the majority of Catholics are exposed to these accretions today, whereas only a small minority experience the ones in the EF?
        What about the “introductory rite”? I’ve been to Masses where the introductory rite is ten times longer than the “prayers at the foot of the altar” but the words ain’t prayer! It’s a mini-homily or credits of all who have worked so hard to enable this liturgy to occur. Sometimes people are asked after the greeting to sit for this long welcome. Unfortunately, these are more frequent at Masses with the pope when he visits and Cathedral Masses in dioceses. I’ve heard the names of lectors, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, ushers and musicians named in this introductory blather. Have you heard “prayers of the faithful” in some places? These often are mini-sermons rather than petitions and almost every particular, non general need is mentioned, and these too are longer than the Last Gospel. And yes, God forbid that anyone have any private piety, that’s the Last Thing we need after the Last Gospel.

      2. I like hearing the names of the cantor, lectors and presider right before Mass starts. In my parish it only takes a moment, and it has been very helpful for me to learn people’s names. It helps foster community, particularly for the people who are not insiders.

        The opposite: in my aunt’s parish in rural France, there is a Mass once a month. It is always a different priest. He arrives, says Mass, and leaves right away. The parishioners don’t know his name, and he doesn’t know any of their names. It’s completely anonymous. My aunt comments: “Sometimes we like the homily, sometimes not so much, but either way, it doesn’t matter how much we like his style: we know we won’t see the same priest again for another year or two.”

      3. The reading of the last gospel was a pious practice that grew up during the middle ages as a personal devotion of the priest after Mass was over. It was seen as a kind of blessing.

        Err, but so was the blessing of the people, a private devotion and a blessing. But we haven’t eliminated that from the liturgy.

        It also allowed other gospels to be read from time to time. An elaborate method of deciding which gospel should be read, depending on the saint’s day, was in place until 1955 when Pius XII simplified the rubrics.

        This is just false. The rules for a commemoration at the last Gospel are not very complicated. (You want complicated? Tell me how many times a canon should be incensed in the presence of a cardinal or the requirements for setting the date of a month’s mind requiem and its class) This kind of reference to how difficult the rubrics were is hard to see as other than an accusation of obscurantism against the old rite.

      4. Wow, strong defense of the old Mass here.

        I sure hope an ecumenical council never calls for its reform, with careful study by qualified experts of every part of the rite of Mass to decide which historical additions should be retained or not, with a view toward renewing and correcting whatever is obscure or lacking in simplicity and clarity.

        awr

      5. Well, Samuel, what’s complicated, more complicated and most complicated would take some time to sort out. I certainly don’t challenge your assertion that there were things more complicated than this in the old liturgy, but it evidently was not simple enough for Pius XII because he changed it, by simplifying it.

        I believe it is incorrect to say that the final blessing we now have was a private pious practice which later worked its way into the liturgy. I say this because it first appears in the papal liturgy. But if you have sources which demonstrate your point, please do direct us to them.

        As for the blessing that remains in the Mass (OF) being also a late addition, it helps to recall that there were prayers over the people added to the postcommunion in the Hadrianum and Gelasian and Leonine sacramentaries (in varied instances) which arguably gave way to the papal practice in Ordo I. The intention of the reformers was evidently to build upon these older traditions harmoniously, while at the same time clearing away some other material so as to let the basic structure stand forth more clearly. The prayers over the people, concluding with the sign of the cross (this last being, yes, a quite late addition) are a more elegant arrangement than could be achieved by retaining the last gospel.

        You don’t reply to my note about the Council’s mandate concerning eliminating useless repetitions, but I’d suggest this was a factor in the decisions that were made.

      6. “But shouldn’t we also speak about things that are creeping into the reformed Mass since the majority of Catholics are exposed to these accretions today, whereas only a small minority experience the ones in the EF?”

        Fr. Allen, I think you are right and that liturgists have indeed been fighting against accretions, on the ground, day by day. Consider the offertory processions we used to have, with globes and rulers at the beginning of the school year! You almost couldn’t find the bread and wine! Consider the communion ministers who have spontaneously added pious words to the prescribed words said as holy communion is distributed! “God bless ya, hon!” Priests who add poems and dramas to the liturgy, readers who add things to the formulae for reading or change the readings on their own bat.

        Every liturgist I know has combatted inappropriate accretions. It’s a full time job. But at the same time, the whole idea of organic development presumes that some changes which take place without permission are eventually approved. So the work is always one of discernment.

        I personally would “discern out” the unity candle at weddings. But the bishops have approved it. What does one say?

      7. Rita, I don’t allow the unity candle for weddings in my parish and it’s written in the guidelines we have. I didn’t allow it in my previous parish nor do I allow weddings during Advent or Lent.
        While there was some squawking about it in the transitional period from these being allowed, in the years since, no one complains and everyone follows our pastoral council approved guidelines.
        Our wedding guidelines:
        http://www.stjosephmacon.com/cms/index.php?id=118,0,0,1,0,0
        Funeral guidelines:
        http://www.stjosephmacon.com/cms/index.php?id=129,0,0,1,0,0

  21. A quick response, particularly to Rita. People who prefer the EF can’t be as easily stereotyped, no more than those who prefer the OF. We have some people who visit from the SSPX and we would encourage them to come home thanks to Summorum Pontificum. We have some who look like they sucked on a lemon and speak ill of the OF. We have a lot who are mentally or phyisically challenged or old and infirm. We have many young people, many with (many!) young children, and many new converts. A lot of former Episcopalians prefer it over the OF. Also, we have some who alternate between OF & EF at our parish. We sometimes attend the OF ourselves, especially if travelling to a region where the EF is not yet available easily.
    Last night, I read the prayers of the faithful at an OF in Cairo, Egypt, with many types of Catholics in attendance, all of us acutely aware of how our differences are internal: the killers of the Catholics in Baghdad, Iraq did not care to distinguish among them.
    Speaking for myself, I prefer the EF not because I consider myself as myself a better Catholic but a worse one – I do need the externals to remind me constantly. If somebody else does not, I admire them. This forum could be better used to get to know one another – I think my side would be reassured if your side would show us how your side is not using liturgical reform as a stalking horse for eventual softening of Catholic teachiing in faith and morals. I can take an OF if I know it is not a first step towards downplaying the sacrificial nature of the Mass offered by an ordained priest – and not a commemorative supper offered by a minister. If I want that, I know where to go – the market is well catered to.
    Your side may seek reassurance that our side isn’t backsliding towards clericalism – I don’t think we are. With an EF, the priest is constrained by the rubrics so it does not matter who he is – like a good waiter, he should provide good but unobtrusive service.

    1. The woes of losing internet connection before edtinig – I did not intend to imply that the OF is not the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. It is – it is just that sometimes depending on how it is celebrated one could be forgiven for not focussing on that fact. It is there but may be hard to find – like the tabernacle at Los Angeles Cathedral!
      Talking of which – I saw a good compromise solution in Northern Irealnd. A new church there has a tabernacle behind gates behind the altar. Outside Mass the gates are open for adoration, during Mass the gates are closed to turn focus to altar. A good solution, I think, that should satisfy many in both camps?

    2. Excellent, Ceile De! You capture more successfully than I did (in a post above) the great diversity of EF worshipers (particularly since Benedict and Pontificum Sumorum). It seems to me that most common misimpressions about the EF movement are based on an outdated assumption that it is monolithic. That its adherents are somehow very “different” in character or motives from any of the folks at a typical OF Mass. When so many EF worshipers are also OF worshipers themselves, and many of those I know are integrally involved in their OF parishes – as choir members, music directors, RCIA leaders, RE instructors, etc.

      And I appreciate especially your pointing out that mutual trust – and, I think, the mutual reinforcement that Pope Benedict suggests – depends on each “side” worshiping the best it can without using the liturgy as a hidden agenda for change in basic doctrine in faith, and with both the OF and the EF faithful to unchanging Eucharistic doctrine – e.g., as summarized most recently by John Paul II in Ecclesia de Eucharistia.

      1. Thanks for your comments; likewise, I enjoyed yours. I forgot to mention the joy so many of us new to the EF find. My wife was not even a baptised Christian but was baptised this year after 3 years of attending the EF. She is not a joiner by nature but she told me after about a year “I want to be part of this” – that in turn brought me back.
        I have compared the OF before to OTC remedies – sufficient for most people with the usual spiritual ailments. But more serious ones may require ‘prescription strength’ – the problem was too many bishops refused to prescribe it even for those who badly needed it – until Summorum Pontificum. For which we will always thank and honour Pope Benedict. Attending the EF gives me also a fresh appreciation of the OF – I can connect it to the elements of what used to be there and see how despite some efforts to the contrary it is still the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

      2. Attending the EF gives me also a fresh appreciation of the OF

        This is the heart of what I think was Pope Benedict’s intent in restoring the EF to the Roman liturgy. That is, for the benefit of the normative liturgy of the Church, rather than as a goal in and of itself.

        For many years, I have attended the OF frequently (several times weekly), something of a liturgy wonk, deeply interested in the liturgy both spiritually and intellectually. However, since returning to regular EF worship, mostly in the past decade, I see in retrospect that the interior dimension of my worship was not fully developed, regarding the full actuosa participatio urged by Pius X when he said

        “If you wish to hear Mass as it should be heard, you must follow with eye, heart, and mouth all that happens at the Altar. Further, you must pray with the Priest the holy words said by him. You have to associate your heart with the holy feelings which are contained in these words and in this manner you ought to follow all that happens on the Altar. When acting in this way, you have prayed Holy Mass.”

        This is pretty standard (now, if not then) for an EF worshiper following the priest’s silent as well as audible prayers in his missal, gradually learning to perceive with a glance at the altar action not only what is happening but what is being prayed, so as to unite himself with it.

        But now I find my active participation in the OF deepened in the same way – participating spiritually in the OF just as in the EF — whereas previously I had tended to listen more passively (to the canon, for instance) – not unlike one may listen while watching a televised Mass.

    3. Ceile, just a small interruption to your mutual affirmations with CH, to say thanks for sharing those comments of yours which were directed to me in particular. I can certainly agree that when those who take the most strident and extreme positions dominate in the public view, greater polarization does result.

      But this discussion began not with that point but rather with the rather vexing question of whether Cardinal Lehmann’s is justified in his defense of the OF against critics who have an idea that the EF is not historically conditioned. I’m perfectly happy to believe that you, and a number of the people who post here DO believe that the EF is historically conditioned, but I don’t think that disposes of the problem of people who do not share your enlightened views. In other words, I continue to support Cardinal Lehmann, as he is presented here, and I wish we knew more about his views and the experiences that led to this “defense.”

      Also, it’s nice that there are discussants here who are not interested in dismantling the OF, but we have on the other hand Ratzinger describing a long-range plan for doing just that once the territory is more favorable (see Fr. O’Leary’s posted link above), and we have a lot of people around on the internet who say similar things, and we have the SSPX, etc. So yes, not all are the same, but yes also, there is a problem not solved only by permissions but also needing to be addressed by genuine leadership.

      1. Rita, a verbatim quotation of the pertinent paragraph of Cardinal Ratzinger’s 2003 letter may provide an antidote to second-hand misinterpretation:

        I believe, though, that in the long term the Roman Church must have again a single Roman rite. The existence of two official rites is for bishops and priests difficult to “manage” in practice. The Roman rite of the future should be a single rite, celebrated in Latin or in the vernacular, but standing completely in the tradition of the rite that has been handed down. It could take up some new elements which have proven themselves, like new feasts, some new prefaces in the Mass, an expanded lectionary – more choice than earlier, but not too much, – an “oratio fidelium”, i.e., a fixed litany of intercessions following the Oremus before the offertory where it had its place earlier.

        It seems to me that this paragraph merely describes the obvious desirability of a joint long-term evolution of the present forms toward a single form that combines the proven features of both. Rather any “dismantling” of either existing form.

      2. I had the same interpretation as C Henry. Among other things, this suggests that Pope Benedict maintains a “developmental” view of the Liturgy, rather than seeing the Mass of 1962 as an insect preserved in amber, unchanging. The letter to Barth suggests that his primary concern here is pastoral — it is in fact difficult to manage both rites in a single parish.

        I also interpret “completely in the tradition of the rite that has been handed down” as encompassing both the EF and the OF.

  22. Robert said The EF has always known women sacristans. I have never heard of an objection. Nor can I imagine an objection to a woman choir director. What the EF requires for semiotic integrity is maleness among liturgical ministers. Surely the sex of whoever’s at the organ console is irrelevant.

    Robert, you are obviously unaware that up to as late as the first 20 years of the 20th century, women and men singers were forbidden to be in the same choir loft without a curtain down the middle dividing the sexes. The curtain had to be high enough so that women could not see men, and vice versa. They could only see in a forward direction towards the choir director, who was therefore the only person who could see everyone.

    One can only conclude that High Mass must have been perceived as an occasion of sin….

    1. Paul, my learned friend, what can I say? Except that reservation of service in the sanctuary to men isn’t supposed to be about avoiding occasions of sin. Though, knowing men, it couldn’t hurt.

      If our ecclesial forbears had recourse to crude devices, are we to mock them? On my planet, the sexes still notice each other at Mass and do not yet enjoy perfect recollection and serene composure enabling them to resist all distractions. Our solution is more elegant and subtle: denial. We simply pretend to possess powers of perfect concentration, and hope for the best. Isn’t progress a wonderful thing? Will you agree that we live in more enlightened times? Of course you will.

      1. I’m sure I live in more enlightened times. What I’m not sure of is whether you do!

        Seriously, we need to carry on a debate based on historical facts, which was the purpose of my post.

    2. And do you include readers in “semiotic integrity”? After all, the reader was once an ordained office, and not the lowest of the minor orders. No female readers?

      I think Pope Benedict’s approach is at least internally consistent consistent: he says that he has nothing against female servers or women taking positions of high responsibility, but that (i) he has no freedom to ordain a woman as a cleric; (ii) only a cleric can sign documents binding in canon law. And he has therefore allowed female readers and servers in his Masses.

      Richard Williamson, the SSPX prelate, also has an internally consistent model: he believes that women should avoid higher education; that is the domain of thinking, whereas women are good at feeling. So they should stay at home and feel…

      But this “semiotic integrity” business seems to me little more than an individual’s personal sensibilities.

      1. Yes, Jonathan, I do include readers. I hope this will not upset your, um, individual personal sensibility.

        I regret that Pope Benedict tolerates female servers. It’s his decision, but is very difficult to square with the GIRM, which clearly requires ecclesiastical persons to exercise the respective offices proper to them.

        Are you attempting to dismiss me with an impertinent reference to Richard Williamson? Oh, my ears and whiskers! For the record, I have never attended an SSPX liturgy, and hope that I never shall — at least until they’re canonically regularized.

      2. I wasn’t associating you with Williamson, Robert. Just saying that his position is entirely coherent: the role of women is strictly limited, so limited that they shouldn’t seek employment outside the home or pursue higher education.

        Stupid, in my view, but coherent. The “mixed” approaches seem less coherent to me — women OK as servers in the OF, not in the EF; women can be readers but not servers, etc.

        I have no authority here, but I would be grateful if you could be more sparing with the sarcasm. It does you no favours and it lowers the tone of the discussion. There are plenty of blogs where sarcasm is the norm in the comment boxes — I can think of a popular one run by an Internet priest. It’s a matter of my sensibilities, which of course you’re free to ignore.

  23. Todd F.>This manifesto may be aligned to the interests and feelings of some traditionalists, but it is certainly non-Catholic, and has no basis in tradition.<

    Dear Todd, Nice pontification!

    Robert is simply stating well know rationales which were behind the Catholic Church's exclusive selection of boys as altar servers up until the 90's or so.

    In your world, those rationales are not even out-moded. Now they never existed? Except by the Albigensians?

  24. George, I never said they were non-existent. I said they have no basis in Christian theology. Hey, they say Pelagianism pops up its head from time to time, too, but staying power doesn’t absolve it from being heretical.

    Robert needs to come up with new rationales, preferably rational ones, if he wants to stay in this ballpark.

    1. Todd, have you ever wondered why the Israelite priesthood was all male? Why the paschal lamb must be male? Why the Word became flesh as a man? Why Jesus chose only men as his apostles? Why he proposes himself as Bridegroom? Why Paul speaks of marriage as a great mystery? Just a nutty coincidence?

      I’m sorry to say you appear to be in denial about the sacramentality of maleness in the context of liturgy, but shutting your eyes doesn’t make it go away.

      I hope you’re not accusing me of heresy. I didn’t expect a Spanish Inquisition.

      1. The Israelite priesthood was all male because it was a patriarchal society. But if you read the Scriptures, it’s pretty plain that women were pushing the envelope, or that God was using them at times to push.

        Jesus chose the Twelve. He didn’t “choose” Paul in the same sense. He also chose Mary Magdalene and the woman at the well for apostolic functions.

        The Bridegroom is a metaphor. Like the Lord’s own mother hen.

        Go ahead and argue the point of women in or out of Orders from twenty centuries of practice if you care to. But don’t use a later theological explanation to justify your stance. This is circular reasoning whether it comes from your keyboard or a pope’s pen.

        You’ve already conceded women have crept into liturgical ministry in the sacristy and with music.

        And however hoary the reasons were that you quoted to make your switched point, some of them are indefensible from either a rational or theological perspective.

        And no, you’re not a heretic. But some of your quotes were quasi-Gnostic, and most of them are plain illogical. The rest are largely unfounded.

      2. I said it above at #75, but I’ll make the assertion here again (though part of me is really glad I was ignored above):

        Sacramentality operates at the level of the humanum. That the humanum is sexed is of its essence, but what that sex is chromosomally is not, and cannot be without violating the meaning of the sacrament — any sacrament — as a means of grace. Maleness as sex isn’t what’s at stake in these arguments anyway; it’s masculinity as gender, and that’s a very tenuous sociocultural construct on which to base a theology.

      3. Fr. Cody, if I could understand what you wrote, I might agree, so in the Catholic tradition, I will have to rely upon what Pope Benedict says about it from the historical point of view in our tradition and more importantly that the pope alone or the pope with an ecumenical council have no authority to authorize the ordination of women. I like limits on papal power and ecumenical councils better than arguing from anthropology and masculinity.

      4. Fr. Allan,

        I fully understand what the Catholic church teaches about the ordination of women, and while I disagree with it, I nonetheless respect it. That being said, I do wish that the position was built on fewer appeals to authority and and historically-conditioned anthropology. It’s hard to enter into serious dialogue about the issue in ecumenical settings when the basis of the opposing position seems shaky.

      5. Fr. Cody, I was being bottom line in my comment, and would prefer to argue less from authority, although for us that has to be the case, and more from the sacramental point of view of the priest acting in the person of Christ especially at the consecration of the Eucharist. I do think at that point, then, Christ as bridegroom and church as bride is as important sacramentally as the acting in the person of Christ, if only for a fleeting moment, but many don’t like that argument either, so we have to fall back on the pope has no authority to change this, which I like too, The pope has limited power. The Orthodox Church has its own perspective that adds to the ecumenical nature of this discussion: http://dlibrary.acu.edu.au/research/theology/ejournal/aejt_4/Nicolaides.htm

  25. Wow, strong defense of the old Mass here.

    Fr. Ruff, I can’t tell if you’re being sarcastic in the first sentence or not.

    I sure hope an ecumenical council never calls for its reform, with careful study by qualified experts of every part of the rite of Mass to decide which historical additions should be retained or not, with a view toward renewing and correcting whatever is obscure or lacking in simplicity and clarity.

    Fr. Ruff, as you well know, it’s not predetermined by the text of Sacrosanctum Concilium what action should be taken. The fact that the reforms were made in a certain way doesn’t prove that they were done correctly. Furthermore, even the action of the council itself is not irreformable. A mandate to reform the liturgy is not a teaching about the nature of the liturgy, otherwise we’d still be stuck with the Tridentine (strictly speaking) liturgy

    I believe it is incorrect to say that the final blessing we now have was a private pious practice which later worked its way into the liturgy. I say this because it first appears in the papal liturgy. But if you have sources which demonstrate your point, please do direct us to them.

    Dix, The Shape of the Liturgy, pg. 522: “The blessing is always said by priests in the Roman rite, even at a sung eucharist, an indication that it is no inherent part of the public rite, but rather to be classed with those semi-private devotions like the ‘last gospel’ (John i. 1-14) and the ‘preparation’, which grew up as a sort of ‘third stratum’ during the middle ages, around the completed Shape of the Liturgy, rather than as a part of it.”

    1. A mandate to reform the liturgy is not a teaching about the nature of the liturgy,

      Here’s a teaching about the nature of the liturgy:

      14. Mother Church earnestly desires that all the faithful should be led to that fully conscious, and active participation in liturgical celebrations which is demanded by the very nature of the liturgy. Such participation by the Christian people as “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a redeemed people (1 Pet. 2:9; cf. 2:4-5), is their right and duty by reason of their baptism.

      In the restoration and promotion of the sacred liturgy, this full and active participation by all the people is the aim to be considered before all else; for it is the primary and indispensable source from which the faithful are to derive the true Christian spirit; and therefore pastors of souls must zealously strive to achieve it, by means of the necessary instruction, in all their pastoral work.

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