Wednesday, August 29, 2012


In the post below this one, the good cardinal says the Liturgy of Pope Paul VI did not revise the Mass as Vatican II envisioned by Sacrosanctum Concilium!

Ao I trust that you have read SC and understand that it should be followed. Without having SC in front of me, let me highlight what I see as indispensable:

1. Latin to be retained, but some vernacular, Pope Benedict models the future with the preface, Canon and Pater Noster in Latin

2. Noble simplicity without useless repetition

3. More lavish use of Scripture, I say SC was implemented in the lectionary

4. Actual participation--the laity must have actual participation in their parts and strict rubrics for their postures

5. Inculturation through art and style of chant but very conservatively

6. Gregorian chant the norm for the Mass parts themselves

So, don't expect the 2002 revised Missal to be dumped but plan to see:

A. The EF Order of Mass restored

B. The Prayers at the Foot of the Altar restored but responded to by the laity even in a sung Mass, but without the double Confiteor

C. Restoration of the traditional Offertory Prayers

D. Communion Rite as in the OF (beginning with Pater Noster and through the Mass's dismissal) with the option of the Last Gospel

E. Revised Roman Calendar as the Amglican Ordinariate has done

I think certain musical instruments should be suppressed such as piano, tambourines, snare drums and guitars.

Of course the norm for the Mass would be Ad Orientem as well as kneeling for Holy Communion and intinction the norm for the laity.

All that I write could happen by papal order today with catches is first and implementation Advent of 2013.

So keeping SC 's normative requests in mind how would you revise the Mass keeping in mind that the 2002 missal itself will not be discarded.


Marc said...

I agree with you partly, Father. Here's what I suspect is the likely result of the "reform of the reform" if it is to have any meaning. I'm assuming here a High Mass.

1. Optional vernacular processional hymn.

2. Prayers at the Foot of the Altar restored that includes a "double" Confiteor. But, the people will participate in the responses.

3. Introit sung by people (optionallly in the vernacular). All propers said optionally in the vernacular.

4. Priest remaining at the altar and facing ad orientem except as permitted in the Traditional Mass (during the Gloria, Credo, and longer Graduals).

5. Gloria in Gregorian settings in Latin (with no vernacular option).

6. The return of the Mass of the Catechumemns: Old Testament read by priest at the altar ad orientem with the option of simultaneous vernacular reading from the lectern by a minor cleric or layman.

7. The return of the Gradual instead of the Responsorial Psalm chanted in the vernacular with Gregorian settings.

8. The Epistle read in the same manner as the O.T. above.

9. Gospel in same manner as O.T. and Epistle. The entire lectionary to be fixed to include those portions excised by the liturgical reformers. Calendar returned to a Traditional state in a meaningful way (which the Anglican Ordinariate calendar is not - topic for another day).

10. No "Prayers of the Faithful" because they are duplicative of the Canon.

11. Credo chanted in Latin.

12. Canon said silently and in Latin ad orientem. Rubrics returned to Traditional Form. Offertory restored. No optional "eucharistic prayers" - only the Roman Canon. People kneel before the Sanctus.

13. Pater Noster sung optionally in the vernacular (with people singing the entirety).

14. No sign of peace amongst the laity.

15. Distribution of Communion kneeling and on the tongue only under one species except in the ordinary exceptional cases. No intinction. Optional vernacular hymns during Communion.

16. Final blessing in the vernacular with people kneeling.

17. No Last Gospel. Optional vernacular hymn as recessional.

Lewis said...

What, pray tell, are examples of useless repetition? I have seen this terminology used on this blog and elsewhere but with no specific examples. Also, I do not understand the litany of active participation. If a person is at Mass, and their heart/mind is aligned with the prayer, then they are participating, whether they open their mouths and speak/sing the same language as those around them/the priest. The proper role of the laity within the Mass is as witness; the priesthood of the faithful is not of the Sacrament of Orders, and therefore our role is different within the Mass, as effected by the nature of the people's classical responses. True, there mayhaps be no reason the laity should not be allowed to sing/chant/speak the Ordinary, but what reason is there that this should be required, albeit emphasized?

Jake said...

"...don't expect to see the 2002 revised Missal to be dumped..."

But if they make the A thru E changes you suggest, aren't they, in effect, dumping the Pauline Missal in favor for the 1965 Missal, albeit with the newer Lectionary?

" would you revise the Mass...?"

I'd like to keep the two forms, EF and OF. EF would continue to be the 1962 TLM Missal as is, but the OF would be the 1965 vernacular Missal, with some Novus Ordo revisions, such as the newer Lectionary, adding " my thoughs and in my words, in what I have done and what I have failed to do" to the Confiteor, perhaps keeping EP2 as an option. For the English vernacular, keeping the recent translation of prayers ("consubstantial" in the Creed, etc).

Things I definitately want to see supressed:
Handshake of peace
protestant part of the Our Father
Penitiential rites b and c
responsorial Glorias
handholding and/or lay orans during the Our Father
Would much rather see these supressed than the musical instruments you suggest.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

It was never really clear what useless repitition means in SC--that should be clarified. It could be what the 1965 missal suppressed -- the priest saying certain parts of the Mass like the Introit Kyrie Gloria credo & Sanctus even as the choir sand these parts thus useless repitition .

The orations of the Mass in terms of the collects prayers over the gifts and post communion prayers as well as prefaces canons and blessings are what I mean by the 2002 MR.

Marc one of the great aspects of the council is its emphasis in the laity and their call to holiness through the priesthood of all believers--we need to go back and evaluate where we went wrong with that and what we did right and I would suggest that is occurring now and has liturgical underpinnings.

Marc said...

Father, how does your comment directed at me impact what I've written? I do not see the connection...

John Nolan said...

The problem with the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar is that they were never intended as a dialogue between priest and people, which is why they were never sung. To recite them as a dialogue in the context of a sung Mass is incongruous. If you want a dialogue at this point, the NO Introduction and Penitential Rite, which can and should be sung, is preferable.

Marc's idea of the priest reading the lections at the altar (presumably in Latin) while someone simultaneously proclaims them from the ambo) harks back to the pre-1960 practice of the celebrant reading the Epistle and Gospel even when they were sung by the subdeacon and deacon. Also his prescriptions for the sung propers would appear to give no place to the schola or the Graduale Romanum. As far as the latter is concerned, the chants are way beyond the capabilities of any congregation, and don't work in any other language but Latin.

The Pope obviously likes EP III and it is the one most used in Papal Masses. However, the Roman Canon should be mandated for the principal Mass on Sundays and Solemnities, and all other EPs suppressed. I would also suppress the 'memorial acclamations' (a novelty of 1969) and restore the 'mysterium fidei' to its traditional place. The Canon to be in a low voice during a Sung Mass, so the celebrant is not hanging around for the Sanctus to finish; however, the section from Qui pridie to the consecration of the Chalice may be sung.

In a sung mass the prescriptions of Musicam Sacram (1967) should be observed - in other words the priest may not recite the texts simply because he can't be bothered to sing them. If it's purely a spoken Mass, there should be no singing at all.

Things that began as abuses and were legitimized afterwards (Communion in the hand, EMHC, altar girls) to be forbidden. Suitable laymen to be instituted as acolytes and lectors and the latter to be in choir dress.

The GIRM needs to be re-written and the rubrics tightened up. No more ad-libbing or mini-homilies. No more extravagant and personalized gestures, or eyeballing the congregation. Ad orientem to be the norm. Reintroduce some of the gestures traditional to the Roman Rite which were unceremoniously dumped in 1967.

This cannot be achieved overnight. Bishops will drag their feet and turn a blind eye to disobedience. Seminary formation needs to include a qualification in Latin and training in the EF. There will very likely be a revolt at parish level, particularly in the USA. Over at PTB the Romophobes are still frothing at the mouth over a translation which renders the Latin more accurately; ask them to use the language itself, even to a limited extent, and they will probably keel over.

Bill Meyer said...

As to drums, why suppress only the snare? In the absence of an orchestra, I find no justification for them at Mass, and they are intrusive, therefore offensive.

Marc said...

John, good catch correcting my vagueness there.

As you guessed, my suggestion regarding the Readings was for the priest to read the prescribed readings in Latin at the altar while they were simultaneously proclaimed in the vernacular by someone else. This restores the proper theology of the Mass of the Catechumens, while also deploying "active participation" to a degree. Further, as I understand it, this is in continuity with some local customs in existence prior to the Council.

Regarding singing certain parts of the Mass, my suggestion was confusingly mixed. Allow me to clarify: As is currently the case in most Traditional Chapels, the people can chant certain aspects of the Mass (when the Gregorian chants are used). Specifically, this would include the Gloria and the Credo. The choir/schola is typically charged with chanting the remaining Propers. This would still be the case in the scheme I have submitted.

I apologize for not being as clear as I should have been.

Now that you have raised the point regarding the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar, I agree with you. Those prayers are more properly restricted to those who will be present at the Altar: the priest and the MC/servers. The people could participate in the final portions of the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar in a meaningful way, though (beginning with the Deus, tu conversus...).

I would personally like to the see the return of the so-called "second Confiteor" (actually the third Confiteor) in the Ordinary Form (as well as in Diocesan TLMs which seem to exclude this almost as a rule for some reason). The placement close in time to Communion has a particular emphasis on our unworthiness (much more so than the currently ill-placed Sign of Peace).

Carol H. said...

I would return the threefold Kyrie.

Dom Prosper Gueranger in his book "The Holy Mass" says, "The three invocations, each repeated thrice over...are like a telling us of our union, here below, with the nine choirs of Angels, who sing, in Heaven, the glory of the Most High. This union prepares us to join them in the Hymn which is now to follow, and which these blessed Spirits brought down to this our earth.

What beauliful imagery! I can't understand why the number was reduced to six. This surely couldn't have been considered useless repetition?

Marc said...

Regarding this speculation:

The best course of action is the return to the use of the Traditional Roman Rite. The Holy Father has given every Latin Rite priest the privilege of saying this Mass. The solution to the Church's liturgical problems lies not in creating a hybid Mass, particularly given that the mixing of Rites is specifically forbidden.

The solution is for every priest to exercise the privilege given him and in obedience to the Holy Father to say the Traditional Roman Mass.

That said, both Rome and individual priests need to stop tinkering with the Mass (with the exception of legitimate development, such as the adding of Propers for new Feasts).

In other words, the Liturgy is perfectly fine. Unfortunately, most priests happen to be saying the wrong Liturgy.

Gene said...

Why intinction? Why not just kneeling and in one kind? Yes, yes! Ban all those dumb instruments. I never want to see another guitar in a Church unless it is in the social hall or in the school where children sing "Froggy Went a Courtin'" and "Jesus Loves Me." Drums should bring immediate excommunication. You know how I feel about that stupid Lion's Club type handshake, and every time I see the laity lifting their hands up in an oracular gesture I want to throw out some snakes! God help us, the circus comes once a year...isn't that enough?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc, you're slipping back to la la land of belonging to a microcosm rather than the macrocosm. By that I mean the EF is only going to be a small movement in the Church like the charismatic movement. The vast majority of Catholics will not request the EF Mass or a Charismatic Mass and most Latin Rite Catholics in Augusta can choose the Melkite Rite Mass but rather choose those the Ordinary Form, even though the Melkite is offered each Sunday. So the point of this post is that the Ordinary Form of the Mass more than likely will be reformed and more like the EF but Sacrosanctum Concilium won't be eliminated and no documents of Vatican II will be eliminated but interpreted with the hermeneutic of continuity.
As for Gene's comment, we have to admit that the Eastern Rite of the Church as well as Eastern Orthodoxy that broke from the papacy and is schismatic but with valid sacraments has always allowed the Precious Blood to the Laity and normally through intinction. It is also the Latin Rite's oldest tradition in one form or another. It subsided sometime after the Great Schism, but never in the East. It would have been recovered for the laity much sooner than it was if not for Martin Luther and other Protestant reformers that pushed the Latin rite into a corner when they insisted that one did not receive Christ totally under the form of Bread or Wine alone. We're over that now and we shouldn't begrude the laity the right to the full Communion Rite in terms of the sign of Body and Blood. It is telling that the Church tells us in the Latin Rite when intinction is used to say to the communicant "The Body and Blood of Christ" and when the laity receive from the chalice directly that only the Body of Christ is said of the Host and The Blood of Christ for the Precious Blood---its sign value and symbolism going on here.

In terms of the Liturgy and a recovered sense of the priesthood of the laity (not to muddle the ordained priesthood) the Church recovered in Vatican II and the revision of the Mass the (baptismal priesthood of the people in joining with the priest as he for and with them offer the sacrifice). Keep in mind sacrifice means worship. The laity, once represented by the choir and altar boys are now to participate acutally as they do. That is why I would insist that the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar in terms of the altar ministers or boys responses should also be said by the laity present as all prepare to participate according to their status in the Church in the Unbloodly representation of the One Sacrifice of Christ. This is a no-brainer as far as I am concerned even in the EF Mass and the laity's participation, completely in terms of the altar boy responses and the choirs parts should be done by the laity also, all of the responses including the prayers at the foot of the altar.

Lay lectors also are a part of this recovery of the priesthood of the laity, in addition to the primary recovery of their actual participation in the Mass and also of EMC's when there is truly a need, which is determined locally by the bishop and priest alone in their role as priest, prophet and king, which is not given to the laity as to the ordained. So the clergy indeed have an authority that is quite different than the laity's not only in terms of the Liturgy, but governing the Church as the clergy participate in the bishops' three-fold ministry of sanctifying, teaching and ruling or governing.
I think that the EF Mass could have some minor reforms immediately, meaning that the Liturgy of the Word using the EF lectionary be said in the vernacular, which is permitted already in the OF Low Mass, but should be permitted also in the Sung and Solemn Sung Masses and facing the people either in the traditional positions or at the ambo. And the use of lay lectors as well as the general use of the deacon in any form of the EF Mass including the Low Mass--that would be very minor adjustments and quite welcomed and might make the EF Mass more palatable to more people in general.

John Nolan said...

Marc, your observation concerning the third Confiteor is an interesting one. If the server did not recite it the priest would assume there were no communicants and would proceed directly to the ablutions. If the server did recite it, the priest would turn and give the Misereatur and Indulgentiam followed by the Ecce Agnus Dei. When the third Confiteor and the formulas for absolution were no longer required (I think it was a result of the 1960 rubrical changes) presumably the priest would have had to glance round and ascertain for himself as to whether or not there were communicants.

Also, the decision as to whether or not to say the Confiteor now rests with the server. Since the Indulgentiam at this point is in the second person (vestrorum/vobis) does it become tuorum/tibi if the only communicant is the server himself?

In a sung Mass the third Confiteor can be justified since the first two are overlaid with the singing of the Introit.

Andy Milam said...

I'd like to add my .02 (shocking, I know)...

Ao. I have read Sacrosanctum Concilium and know the meaning. It was a course I took specifically on in school.

1. Latin only for the Mass. There is no need to use the vernacular. It was intended to be used for the other sacraments, first and only in the Mass if there was a genuine need, such as a translation of the readings and the homily.

2. There is no useless duplication in the TLM, so we agree.

3. What is meant by "lavish?" The lectionary in the TLM is noble and it is simple. That is exactly what SC called for. It is the lectionary in the Novus Ordo which is impossibly complex for the average Catholic.

4. Participatio actuosa is not "doing" it is "being." The reason the servers respond is so the faithful may be liberated to worship in the way which is most pleasing to them. To require the faithful to respond to the various prayers is participatio activa and it is part of the major issues and confusion in the Mass today.

5. Agreed, but Gregorian Chant must be the model and the norm.

6. Agreed.

A1. Agreed.

B. Disagree. See above. The priest must make reparation for himself and the faithful likewise. Therefore the so-called duplication is not really a duplication at all, but rather is a wholly separate and complete prayer. Notice that the words of the priest are different than the words of the faithful in the Confiteor.

C. Agreed.

D. Disagree. The OF Communion Rite is Protestantized on several levels, including the Protestant doxology, the simplified formula for distribution, the loss of the preparatory prayers of the priest, the disjoining of the communal Pax, the true duplication of the Mass, the reception of the cup (we receive the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Chris in the Host, there is no need for the cup for the faithful).

E. Agreed, only insofar as the new saints are added and properly classified (Classes I-III, commemoration)

Those instruments that you say should be suppressed already are, by documents of the 20th century. They simply need to be enforced.

And finally, I would switch the TLM to the be the Ordinary Form and the Novus Ordo to be the Extraordinary Form.