Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Cardinal Cañizares Llovera, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in an interview states the following: You can read the short entire interview HERE!

The Congregation in which the Pope has called me to act as Prefect does not oppose the use of the old liturgy, although the task of our dicastery is to enhance the meaning of liturgical renewal according to the directives of the Sacrosanctum Concilium constitution and follow in the footsteps of the Second Vatican Council. In relation to this it must be said that the extraordinary form of the Latin Rite must draw inspiration from the conciliar Constitution which in the first ten paragraphs focuses on the true spirit of the liturgy and so is relevant to all rites.”

I presume these are the first 10 paragraphs of Sacrosanctum Concilium that apply to the Extraordinary Form Mass:


1. This sacred Council has several aims in view: it desires to impart an ever increasing vigor to the Christian life of the faithful; to adapt more suitably to the needs of our own times those institutions which are subject to change; to foster whatever can promote union among all who believe in Christ; to strengthen whatever can help to call the whole of mankind into the household of the Church. The Council therefore sees particularly cogent reasons for undertaking the reform and promotion of the liturgy.

2. For the liturgy, "through which the work of our redemption is accomplished," [1] most of all in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist, is the outstanding means whereby the faithful may express in their lives, and manifest to others, the mystery of Christ and the real nature of the true Church. It is of the essence of the Church that she be both human and divine, visible and yet invisibly equipped, eager to act and yet intent on contemplation, present in this world and yet not at home in it; and she is all these things in such wise that in her the human is directed and subordinated to the divine, the visible likewise to the invisible, action to contemplation, and this present world to that city yet to come, which we seek [2]. While the liturgy daily builds up those who are within into a holy temple of the Lord, into a dwelling place for God in the Spirit [3], to the mature measure of the fullness of Christ [4], at the same time it marvelously strengthens their power to preach Christ, and thus shows forth the Church to those who are outside as a sign lifted up among the nations [5] under which the scattered children of God may be gathered together [6], until there is one sheepfold and one shepherd [7].

3. Wherefore the sacred Council judges that the following principles concerning the promotion and reform of the liturgy should be called to mind, and that practical norms should be established.

Among these principles and norms there are some which can and should be applied both to the Roman rite and also to all the other rites. The practical norms which follow, however, should be taken as applying only to the Roman rite, except for those which, in the very nature of things, affect other rites as well.

4. Lastly, in faithful obedience to tradition, the sacred Council declares that holy Mother Church holds all lawfully acknowledged rites to be of equal right and dignity; that she wishes to preserve them in the future and to foster them in every way. The Council also desires that, where necessary, the rites be revised carefully in the light of sound tradition, and that they be given new vigor to meet the circumstances and needs of modern times.



1. The Nature of the Sacred Liturgy and Its Importance in the Church's Life

5. God who "wills that all men be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth" (1 Tim. 2:4), "who in many and various ways spoke in times past to the fathers by the prophets" (Heb. 1:1), when the fullness of time had come sent His Son, the Word made flesh, anointed by the Holy Spirit, to preach the the gospel to the poor, to heal the contrite of heart [8], to be a "bodily and spiritual medicine" [9], the Mediator between God and man [10]. For His humanity, united with the person of the Word, was the instrument of our salvation. Therefore in Christ "the perfect achievement of our reconciliation came forth, and the fullness of divine worship was given to us" [11].

The wonderful works of God among the people of the Old Testament were but a prelude to the work of Christ the Lord in redeeming mankind and giving perfect glory to God. He achieved His task principally by the paschal mystery of His blessed passion, resurrection from the dead, and the glorious ascension, whereby "dying, he destroyed our death and, rising, he restored our life" [12]. For it was from the side of Christ as He slept the sleep of death upon the cross that there came forth "the wondrous sacrament of the whole Church" [13].

6. Just as Christ was sent by the Father, so also He sent the apostles, filled with the Holy Spirit. This He did that, by preaching the gospel to every creature [14], they might proclaim that the Son of God, by His death and resurrection, had freed us from the power of Satan [15] and from death, and brought us into the kingdom of His Father. His purpose also was that they might accomplish the work of salvation which they had proclaimed, by means of sacrifice and sacraments, around which the entire liturgical life revolves. Thus by baptism men are plunged into the paschal mystery of Christ: they die with Him, are buried with Him, and rise with Him [16]; they receive the spirit of adoption as sons "in which we cry: Abba, Father" ( Rom. 8 :15), and thus become true adorers whom the Father seeks [17]. In like manner, as often as they eat the supper of the Lord they proclaim the death of the Lord until He comes [18]. For that reason, on the very day of Pentecost, when the Church appeared before the world, "those who received the word" of Peter "were baptized." And "they continued steadfastly in the teaching of the apostles and in the communion of the breaking of bread and in prayers . . . praising God and being in favor with all the people" (Acts 2:41-47). From that time onwards the Church has never failed to come together to celebrate the paschal mystery: reading those things "which were in all the scriptures concerning him" (Luke 24:27), celebrating the eucharist in which "the victory and triumph of his death are again made present" [19], and at the same time giving thanks "to God for his unspeakable gift" (2 Cor. 9:15) in Christ Jesus, "in praise of his glory" (Eph. 1:12), through the power of the Holy Spirit.

7. To accomplish so great a work, Christ is always present in His Church, especially in her liturgical celebrations. He is present in the sacrifice of the Mass, not only in the person of His minister, "the same now offering, through the ministry of priests, who formerly offered himself on the cross" [20], but especially under the Eucharistic species. By His power He is present in the sacraments, so that when a man baptizes it is really Christ Himself who baptizes [21]. He is present in His word, since it is He Himself who speaks when the holy scriptures are read in the Church. He is present, lastly, when the Church prays and sings, for He promised: "Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them" (Matt. 18:20) .

Christ indeed always associates the Church with Himself in this great work wherein God is perfectly glorified and men are sanctified. The Church is His beloved Bride who calls to her Lord, and through Him offers worship to the Eternal Father.

Rightly, then, the liturgy is considered as an exercise of the priestly office of Jesus Christ. In the liturgy the sanctification of the man is signified by signs perceptible to the senses, and is effected in a way which corresponds with each of these signs; in the liturgy the whole public worship is performed by the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Head and His members.

From this it follows that every liturgical celebration, because it is an action of Christ the priest and of His Body which is the Church, is a sacred action surpassing all others; no other action of the Church can equal its efficacy by the same title and to the same degree.

8. In the earthly liturgy we take part in a foretaste of that heavenly liturgy which is celebrated in the holy city of Jerusalem toward which we journey as pilgrims, where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God, a minister of the holies and of the true tabernacle [22]; we sing a hymn to the Lord's glory with all the warriors of the heavenly army; venerating the memory of the saints, we hope for some part and fellowship with them; we eagerly await the Saviour, Our Lord Jesus Christ, until He, our life, shall appear and we too will appear with Him in glory [23].

9. The sacred liturgy does not exhaust the entire activity of the Church. Before men can come to the liturgy they must be called to faith and to conversion: "How then are they to call upon him in whom they have not yet believed? But how are they to believe him whom they have not heard? And how are they to hear if no one preaches? And how are men to preach unless they be sent?" (Rom. 10:14-15).

Therefore the Church announces the good tidings of salvation to those who do not believe, so that all men may know the true God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent, and may be converted from their ways, doing penance [24]. To believers also the Church must ever preach faith and penance, she must prepare them for the sacraments, teach them to observe all that Christ has commanded [25], and invite them to all the works of charity, piety, and the apostolate. For all these works make it clear that Christ's faithful, though not of this world, are to be the light of the world and to glorify the Father before men.

10. Nevertheless the liturgy is the summit toward which the activity of the Church is directed; at the same time it is the font from which all her power flows. For the aim and object of apostolic works is that all who are made sons of God by faith and baptism should come together to praise God in the midst of His Church, to take part in the sacrifice, and to eat the Lord's supper.

The liturgy in its turn moves the faithful, filled with "the paschal sacraments," to be "one in holiness" [26]; it prays that "they may hold fast in their lives to what they have grasped by their faith" [27]; the renewal in the Eucharist of the covenant between the Lord and man draws the faithful into the compelling love of Christ and sets them on fire. From the liturgy, therefore, and especially from the Eucharist, as from a font, grace is poured forth upon us; and the sanctification of men in Christ and the glorification of God, to which all other activities of the Church are directed as toward their end, is achieved in the most efficacious possible way.


Father Shelton said...

It should be noted that the basic principals of SC apply to all liturgical families, East and West. Also, just a few years before his election in his 1998 speech "Ten Years of the Motu Proprio 'Ecclesia Dei'", Pope Benedict insisted on the continued importance of SC for celebrations of the Roman liturgy according to its earlier forms.
I would say this is a bombshell statement only for those hardliners on both "sides" who have not been paying attention.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

And of course there is a bit of tongue in cheek with this post as SC was for the Liturgy that the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council celebrated at that Council, which was--the 1962 missal.

Father Shelton said...

The first paragraph says the Council intends to directs us to do four things: (A.) make Catholics better Catholics, (B.) make Catholic institutions more useful, (C.) make all Christians Catholic, and (D.) make non-Christians Catholic. So, VCII is a very Catholic council, readily applicable to the sacred liturgy. As Dei Verbum puts it in its first paragraph, "...following in the footsteps of the Council of Trent and of the First Vatican Council, this present council wishes to set forth authentic doctrine on divine revelation and how it is handed on, so that by hearing the message of salvation the whole world may believe, by believing it may hope, and by hoping it may love". This, too, is readily applicable to the way in which the sacred liturgy is celebrated, since the liturgy is truth in action.

Henry Edwards said...

Looks like the cited introductory paragraphs of SC--if not precisely same ole same ole boilerplate--simply consist of standard doctrine that long predates Vatican II. If so, what's the "bombshell"?

Joe Shlabotnick said...

"Lastly, in faithful obedience to tradition, the sacred Council declares that holy Mother Church holds all lawfully acknowledged rites to be of equal right and dignity; that she wishes to preserve them in the future and to foster them in every way."

Perhaps the greatest failure of the Postconciliar Church. The only thing that has been fostered since 1970 has been dissent and destruction, at least before JPII started reigning in the rot.

Sorry, but I still can't jump on the revised look at Vatican II bandwagon. The Blessed Mother clearly instructed that the Pope was to reveal the 3rd Secret of Fatima in 1960. Instead, it was suppressed for a Council that Pius XII had considered calling himself but wisely thought better of. The Council further doomed itself by the Vatican's Metz agreement to remain silent about Communism, which was (and might still be) the greatest threat to humanity at the time. We have reaped the fruits of selling out our integrity: Russia has continued to spread her errors (no one can look at Russia today and claim it is "converted" by any stretch of the imagination) and we continue to have popes, cardinals, bishops and priests, who, in spite of being good men in all other respects, continue to defend a misguided council that has done far more damage than good.

I am convinced the reason the 3rd Secret of Fatima remains a secret is because it would shame the Church's leadership if revealed: Very likely it predicts a great apostasy within the Church under the guise of renewal under the auspices of an Ecumenical Council.

I don't see anything to celebrate yet.

rcg said...


Joseph Johnson said...

More of a "bombshell" to me was an article in the most recent issue of our diocesan newspaper, "The Southern Cross," (both in English and in Spanish) wherein a layman wrote of giving homilies at a pastor's request. In his article, even the layman writer, when first asked to do so by the priest, appeared to know that this function is reserved to priests and deacons. Nonetheless, he preached, as he was asked to do, and seemed then to promote this idea as something that more lay people should be ready to do if asked to do so in a church with a shortage of priests.

What gives here? If preaching homilies is the reserve of ordained priests and deacons why is this article in our diocesan newspaper? I had thought that we were trying to recover from a period of confusion and bad catechesis. Now all we need is well-meaning but unqualified laypeople "sharing their experiences" and perpetuating the confusion and bad catechesis!

Gene said...

Every time I read an article that is supposed to be a "bombshell" I am reminded of the line from T.S. Eliot,"...not with a bang but a whimper..."

Joseph Johnson said...

Incidentally, the article (to which I referred above) and which I considered more of a "bombshell" was in the October 11, 2012 issue of "The Southern Cross," which is the official newspaper of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Savannah, Georgia. The article is by Moises Sandoval, who says that he works for Maryknoll, and is entitled, "Invited to Preach." The subscript to the article states that Mr. Sandoval is the author of several books on Hispanics in the U.S.

Nonetheless, as far as I know, Hispanic Catholics are not governed by different rules when it comes to who gets to preach the homily at Mass (bishops, priests, and deacons).