Saturday, June 16, 2012


Watch this video only posted yesterday, June 15th and then read my comments below it and make your own! At the end of the video Fr. Jeremy Driscoll, OSB speaks of the possibility of certain “restorations” in future revisions of Pope Paul VI's Mass. Given his position in Rome, is he reflecting the thinking of the Holy Father and the Congregation for Divine Worship? Is he hinting or revealing, in a rather dramatic way,what he knows is in the works for the reform of the reformed Mass? And does he prove that I am clairvoyant about these things? This Benedictine thinks like me; I like this OSB! :)
Click twice on this video to go to full screen:

My comments: Father Jeremy Driscoll, OSB makes his comments on this very well produced video under the following five subtitles:

1) A Loss of the Sacred
2) Mass Facing the People
3) Sacrifice or Supper
4) Active Participation
5) Criticism and the Reform

Celebrating the legitimate option of the Tridentine Mass (as we do at St. Joseph Church in Macon) gives priests and communities an opportunity in our current day to critique the reform of this Mass which now is the Ordinary Form, and also the ability to critique the 1962 missal afresh. Fr. Driscoll hits the nail on the head, but now we don’t need him telling us, for now we, the community, can see for ourselves if the reform accomplished what was intended as highlighted by others, ”…the voices of the Bishops from all across the world, as expressed in the vota, and their comments on the schema that became SC, asking for a liturgy that could speak to the people, that could draw them even more into the celebration of the mysteries of the faith.”

Fr. Driscoll highlights much of Cardinal Ratzinger’s critique of the reform having been turned into an “enclosed circle, too horizontal” that active participation has been turned into a babble of words and activities, that some of what was good in the unreformed Mass should not have been tossed out and that the implementers of the reformed Mass attempt to do too much to please superficial emotional needs rather than the deepest spiritual needs of communities.

Who would have thought ten years ago that someone of his liturgical background would make a strong case for ad orientem without denigrating completely facing the people. Also, the Latin/vernacular mix seems to be back on the table.
Finally, the video itself shows two images as Fr. Driscoll states that certain things might be recovered from the Tridentine Mass apart from ad orientem, although Fr. Driscoll doesn’t name them, but what is shown are the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar and the Offertory Prayers.

Finally, my own perspective, which I humbly submit once again, is simply offer the Tridentine Order of Mass (preferably the 1965 missal’s version and rubrics) as an option for the current reformed missal in Latin or the vernacular. Nothing else would need to change in terms of lectionary and calendar. Of course with this option, I suspect only the Roman Canon would be used or simply keep the reform of additional canons and prayed audibly as an option. The current order would also remain as a normative option. Now isn’t that simple? Of course, for those who celebrate it, the 1962 Missal would still be the Extraordinary Form.

There are two things that I have recovered here at St. Joseph Church:

1. The chanting of the Introit and the Offertory and Communion Antiphons which were recovered about three years ago now, but we still sing a Processional Hymn and additional anthems or hymns at the Offertory and Communion.

2. On the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of our Lord, I implemented the option of communicants choosing to kneel to receive Holy Communion. During the summer months at our 4:30 PM anticipated Mass on Saturday and our 7:45 AM and 5:00 PM Sunday Masses, due to the large number of Extraordinary Ministers away on vacation, I've implemented "intinction" as an option which means we only need two to three Extraordinary Minsters of Holy Communion rather than eight or nine. Communicants still have the option to receive on the hand either standing or kneeling even when intinction is provided, they simply place their hands in the throne fashion which indicates to the minister of Holy Communion to give them an "unintincted" Host.

What Father Driscoll says about the Liturgy as God's "impressing" upon the assembly God's spiritual formation of them by His grace and actions in the Liturgy rather than the assembly expressing who they are at a particular cultural moment in their lives is very important to make distinctions. I wonder what kneeling or standing for Holy Communion impresses upon those who receive this way and those who witness it?

This video below is a bit too strident and negative about the reforms compared to how Fr. Driscoll describes them above. But in terms of how modern liturgists and enclosed communities manipulated the reform of the Mass, which Pope Paul VI never envisioned or encouraged, creates this sort of reaction which has sympathy in not just few places. Modern liturgists are responsible for this sort of push back against the Mass of Paul VI, but Paul VI's Mass can be celebrated reverently and the 1962 missal could be celebrated the way that some of these abberations are celebrated, nothing would stop a rebellious community from doing this to the 1962 missal, so don't forget that:


Carol H. said...

The second video is actually a very good depiction of the layperson's experience of everything that has taken place. I have experienced some of these attrocities myself, and others that were not shown.

I thank God for Mother Angelica and EWTN- I would have been lost without them.

Templar said...

The 1st video is typical of the problem as I see it. he is saying the right things, but he is using words that are not clear and unambiguous. You hear them as saying the right things because you are of a right mind. Some Liberal minded person will hear the opposite of what you are hearing. That's been the problem with the Council and the Church since the Council all along.

The 2nd video on the other hand is clear, concise, unambitious. No shades of gray, just black and white, right and wrong, as Catholicism should be.

John Nolan said...

Father, if you must have an entrance hymn, it should be before the chanted Introit. If necessary pause at the foot of the altar until it is over. The Introit is the liturgical beginning of Mass and indeed gives the Mass its name; Dilexisti, Suscepimus, Requiem and so on. At the Offertory the people are seated and the collection is being taken, so it is best that they are listening, not singing. The Communion Antiphon, repeated after each verse or pair of verses of the psalm is the best accompaniment for Communion.

Vernacular metrical congregational hymns are not liturgical; they are not allowed at a sung mass in the EF (except at the end, when the Mass is over, there being no recessional in the Roman Rite) and before any real reform can take place congregations must be weaned off their hymn-addiction. We should be singing the Mass, not singing at Mass.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

My policy is that there is no congregational singing at the offertory, although the cantor or choir are free to sing something in addition to the antiphon. Unfortunately, the GIRM allows for hymns in place of the official introit and at communion. This is an aberration I believe and a hold over the from was allowed for the Low Mass on Sundays in the Tridentine period. It needs reform, but when O Lord?

Carol H. said...

I am not clairvoyant, but I have always suspected that we might see some reforms of the reform during the year of faith. After all, The Pope said that it will be a time to take a second look at the V2 docs to see what they really say.

ytc said...

I think we will be hearing something soon. Year of Faith and Synod of Bishops...

ytc said...


The AUCSP is a new group of ancient priests who are working to keep alive the "Spirit" of Vatican II.

I want to also give you a well-rounded reaction from a priest a bit older than I am:

Don B said...

My guess is, when (not "if"... "when") the SSPX returns to full communion with Rome, that will signal the beginning of the end of the revised Missal of Paul VI as the ordinary form. Within a decade, it will be supressed, and the vernacular Missal of 1965, adapted for the modern calender, will become the new OF (while the EF remains the 1962 Missal set to the pre-Vatican II calendar). Then it will truly be "two forms, one rite".

As for the SSPX, my guess is (and am I clairvoyant, or just a "Southern Orders" reader?) Bishop Fellay and the other 2 bishops will reunite with Rome, bringing most of the laity with them. Only the anti-semetic, somewhat looney Bishop Williamson will refuse. He will take his small group of fanatical followers with him, and unite with the sedevacant groups SSPV (North America) and Institute of the Mother of Good Counsel (Europe), to form a single, unified society (or more accurately, "cult") with Williamson as Superior, or perhaps even elected anti-pope. The wild card is the Priestly Society of St Josephat. Will they return to Rome with the SSPX or will they join Williamson in his united Sede cult?

Carol H. said...


When I first saw the video, it didn't bother me at all. I thought 'if they want to do this on their own time, fine, as long as they don't bring it to Mass with them'. Then I checked out their website. Scarey! That is precisely what they plan to do, contaminate the Mass with this stuff and bring back the 60's and 70s. Freaky!

Then I read the piece from Chant Cafe- a breath of fesh air! It gives me hope for the future of the Church. It would be wonderful if new Bishops could be appointed from this group of holy young Priests!

ytc said...

Or, even more accurately, Bishop Williamson will in that case be the Patriarch of a new schismatic Church... And then Rome will really have some problems. There hasn't been a declaration of schism in a while...

ytc said...

Carol, "if" new bishops can be selected from these young priests? This isn't a matter of if, it's a matter of when. :D

David said...

ytc, you mean schismatic church like the "Polish National Catholic Church", "Old Catholic Church", "American National Catholic Church", and "National Catholic Church of North America"?