Tuesday, November 27, 2012


The blog, The New Liturgical Movement is reporting that the Patriarch of Venice, Archbishop Francesco Moraglia, recently celebrated Mass in the Ordinary Form at the Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute on November 21st, the feast of Madonna della Salute, at the famous high altar of the same. That means that the Mass was also celebrated ad orientem -- which is always a welcome development.

My comments: This would have been unheard of just five years ago or shorter. The Ad Orientem recovery toothpaste is out of the tube and it won't be able to be put back into the tube and it will continue to slink out everywhere.

This will certainly displease the obstructionists who believe Ad Orientem was suppressed by Vatican II reforms of the Mass which made facing the people mandatory in their progressive dreams only.

The Mass that is pictured will certainly displease those who think we're heading back to only the EF Mass and private Masses as this Mass as an Ordinary Form Mass was concelebrated in the post-Vatican II way.

Some days you just can't please everyone nor should the Church even try!


Jonathan B. said...

I don't have a problem with the current Roman Missal (Ordinary Form). I do wish the OF Order of the Mass would be replaced with a slight revision of the 1965 Order of the Mass, but the Missal itself is fine. The problem I have is, for lack of a better word, the "style" most rank and file parishes celebrate the Mass. In my area most all parishes have Mass very casual, with folk and broadway-pop Mass settings, and hymns that center on "we" and "me", virtually ignoring God, Jesus, Mary, and the saints and angels. Likewise the homilies are all about social justice and helping each other and even saving the environment. Nothing about faith or spirituality. The Church buildings we have are all generic architecture that look like a daycare center or medical office building, not a Church. The interiors are all plain auditoriums with a few felt banners on the wall or cloth streamers. Many have chairs intead of pews. The Altars are tiny wooden tables that look like it belongs more in a home dining room than a place of worship. These are the things that make going to Mass kind of a penance to endure: it's more of a social worker pep rally than Holy Mass of the Catholic Church.

Henry Edwards said...

The irony is that, whereas the typical parish celebration of the OF Mass is so bare and minimal (if not banal), the OF missal in its original Latin (and now in the new English translation) is in some ways fuller and richer than the EF missal.

The deficient manner of OF celebration stems from a combination of deficient rubrics and deficient formation of a couple of generations of priests.

But, having compared the EF and OF propers daily for the past year, I realize that the OF has a broader range of elegant propers (collects, etc) and a number of beautiful prefaces that would (IMO) be welcome additions to the EF missal.

Though the content of the OF lectionary suffers by comparison. Despite its broader range of scriptural selections--especially for daily Masses in ordinary time, where saints days with their own readings are typically observed in the EF but not in the OF--the OF lectionary is surprisingly lacking in the "hard" and deeper scriptural readings of the EF lectionary. For instance, this past Sunday's powerful and memorable EF Gospel reading (Matthew 24:13-25) does not to appear at all in the OF lectionary.

At any rate, though I hesitate to attend an OF Mass unless I know in advance what to expect, I love my new Latin-English OF daily missal, using it daily in my private devotions.

John Nolan said...

Henry, there is a lot of truth in what you say, and in the early days of the Consilium there was a scholarly examination of ancient texts which did indeed lead to a restoration of some prayers which had been dropped. However, the desire to inculturate the missal which reached its apogee in CLP 1969 where the future was seen to be regionally composed texts, tends to run counter to this aspiration.

I recently saw the Holy Father celebrate Mass using EP III. I have nothing against it as an anaphora, and he uses it as a matter of preference, but every time I hear it I am forcefully reminded of the fact that it was written on a typewriter by Fr Vaggagini forty-odd years ago. Traditional it ain't.

Henry Edwards said...

John, in regard to attending an OF Mass "only when I know what to expect", I mean when I expect no EP other than the Roman Canon--though I won't be outraged if EP III instead--no hand-holding and back-slapping, no banal ditties, etc.

Incidentally, I view essentially all of our Holy Father's Masses inside St. Peter's Basilica, and would have said his preference is the Roman Canon, though admittedly EP III shows up fairly often also.

In regard to "regionally composed" propers, we hear them rarely (if ever) in the U.S., though I have the impression (from my CTS missal) that you have a good many of them in Britain for the many Reformation-era English martyrs.

Andy Milam said...


As you know, we're on the same page 99% of the time, whether it be here or elsewhere.

I agree with you 1000% when you say, "The deficient manner of OF celebration stems from a combination of deficient rubrics and deficient formation of a couple of generations of priests."

I would add that there is a notion that liturgical law has been replaced by liturgical suggestion and that the rubrics are not governed. I would also argue that when one of the two legal systems which govern Holy Mother Church have been compromised, then there can be nothing but deficiency and chaos.

I cannot agree wholly with the idea that, "...having compared the EF and OF propers daily for the past year, I realize that the OF has a broader range of elegant propers (collects, etc) and a number of beautiful prefaces that would (IMO) be welcome additions to the EF missal."

The reason being they are contrived, no matter how elegant they are. While I understand the "license" being taken, it is this "license" which has undermined the whole of the Mass. It is because there are several options for collects and there are several options for offertories (which are not really offertories, but rather secrets said aloud), that suggestion still reigns supreme. This is a big problem which must be addressed.

So, I can't agree with the second statement. I do however commend you for finding personal devotional succor in them. There is nothing disdainful about that. Thoughts?

John Nolan said...

Henry, I was referring to the 1998 ICEL Sacramentary which was (rightly) thrown out by Rome and which gave licence to 'presiders' to produce Collects of their own devising. A Collect which includes the name of a particular martyr is in the Roman tradition.

Pius V did indeed cut down the number of Prefaces but the NO went to the opposite extreme and most of the new ones seem to be designed for the vernacular Mass. In particular the endings 'et ideo' and 'per quem' which are lapidary endings are too often replaced by ones awkward to sing.

I would add a warning to those who hanker after the 1965 interim missal as being "what the Council Fathers wanted". It was an unmitigated disaster and was only designed to soften the blow which was shortly to come.

Henry Edwards said...

Andy, it would take a pretty complex statement to say fully what I really meant. Roughly, that the propers and prefaces in the OF missal have a wider range of content than those in the EF missal, but certainly NOT that as a whole they are "better" in the OF than in the OF.

Indeed, if I had to choose exclusively between the two, I'd certainly keep the EF propers and ditch the OF ones. But I don't have to make that choice, and use them both daily, mostly the EF for liturgical worship at Mass, but the OF texts for private study and prayer.

Anonymous said...

Here is a hypothetical question. Suppose it was uncovered that Annibale Bugnini was a serial child molestor. Since he was the primary composer and designer of the Novus Ordo, would this alleged revelation spur the Vatican to instantly supress the Novus Ordo? Or would they be willing to continue to celebrate a form of the Mass designed by a serial child molestor, ignoring any outrage that may be directed at it?

Anonymous said...

They don't seem bothered to be celebrating a Protestant prayer service invented by a Freemason that uses Rabbinical Jewish meal blessings as an "offertory" and was composed to reinforce the errors of arahaeologism while promoting innovation and tolerating heresy.

So, I'm guessing they'd probably still force it on unsuspecting Catholics and call everyone who refused to accept it "schismatic."

Joseph Johnson said...

Not only do I applaud the ad orientem, I love the vestments the bishop is wearing!

Now, back to my home parish of St. Joseph in Waycross, Ga.:

For the first time in months, my family and I went to choir practice (this includes my 12 and 14 year old daughters, one of whom is taking Latin in school and the other can sing the Pater Noster in Latin). We sing in the choir every Sunday but we live 20 miles from town and we are usually ready to get home at the end of the work day/school night (not stay in town without supper for a meeting or a practice).

Tonight, resolved that we would go because I knew that they would begin practicing the Advent and Christmas music and I wanted to see what was planned (hoping not to be disappointed!). Some months ago at practice our pastor had asked us why we hadn't done any Latin pieces in some time and I wanted to see that our midnight Mass for Christmas would (at least) have a traditional Latin Gloria.

Father was there when we got there and he was going over a new English Mass setting for Advent (which is an improvement over what we have been singing). I then respectfully suggested a Latin Gloria for the Christmas Masses and he agreed, recalling that we had done this a couple of years ago. He said we would practice it during Advent. When I later brought it up (after he left us to practice) two ladies with short hair in their sixties obliquely objected, one by saying that the Latin Gloria didn't "go with this (English) Mass (setting)." My response was that the Latin parts could always be used and that if she wanted it to all "go together" I suggested my preference for an all Latin Mass setting and then told her, "but I KNOW you don't want THAT!" I told her that I was simply trying to compromise and have some Latin parts for Christmas and I didn't see why that was such a problem.

These women always object and talk over me when I bring up this subject and I had had enough! Throughout the year I put up with and sing the stuff they want to sing and when I ask for a little Latin (and get the pastor's approval) and they treat me like the crazy old uncle after the priest leaves (actually they're a good ten to fifteen years my senior).

These ladies in their 60's with the "nun cut" hairdos need to read Sacrosanctum Concilium and get educated! Sorry for venting!

Gene said...

Anonymous, I get your point and agree. However, the sins of the composer of the Mass do not invalidate it. I do not like the OF very much, but there are plenty of real reasons to suppress it without having to use your hypothetical. BTW, "...they don't seem to be bothered by celebrating a Protestant prayer service invented by a Freemason that use Jewish meal blessings...." LOL! You're killin' me...

WSquared said...

...or, Joseph Johnson, you might just want to highlight the relevant parts of Sacrosanctum Conclilium saying that you were at least kind enough to spoon-feed them.

Or perhaps that's being a little uncharitable, if not unkind. But I sympathize and empathize entirely. Your "but I KNOW you wouldn't want THAT!" killed me. I needed a good laugh!

Kudos for not being afraid to ask for a little Latin. Whenever silly arguments come up that "Jesus didn't speak Latin!" well yanno what?! He didn't speak ENGLISH, either, so there! Again, it goes to show just how limited some people's vaunted respect of "diversity" truly is. ...and you might point that out to them, too, at a choice moment. You might even ask them kindly, but firmly, what they're so afraid of.