Tuesday, July 8, 2014

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM

Praytell has a post on SP which is written by William H. Johnston which you can read HERE. This is what he writes in part which I find spot on and which I think Catholic pastors should heed:

  1. SP does not displace or diminish the postconciliar reformed liturgy which remains, by clear intent and design (and naming it the “ordinary form”), the ordinary liturgy Catholics celebrate as a matter of course.
  2. SP does give the 1962 Missal new standing as a structural component of the Roman Rite, its “extraordinary form”; it is now legally established, though secondary or subsidiary to the OF.
  3. SP does not assert or assume the priority or superiority of, or otherwise preference, the EF over the OF in the church’s liturgical life.
  4. SP does call on Catholics today to respect the EF “on account of its venerable and ancient usage” (SP, Art. 1).
  5. SP imposes the EF on no one. Catholics wishing to have nothing to do with it need never celebrate it (with the exception of clergy called upon to provide EF celebrations).
  6. SP does authorize, for Catholics who desire it and take steps to seek it out, a wider-than-before yet still restricted access to the EF.
  7. SP subjects each form, in its ritual elements or manner of celebration (ars celebrandi), to the influence of the other form. Though little has happened in seven short years, SP intends the EF to change, as also the OF. How much change results from their “mutually enriching” influence, whether much or little, of what kind, in which direction, is not predetermined by SP, and depends first of all on members of the church who celebrate the liturgy in each/both form(s) and what they discern to be desirable – thus enacting a kind of “grass roots” liturgical theology and process of ritual reform.
I can live with and promote these seven principles. It would also mutually enrich doctrinal, scriptural and ecclesiological aspects of the Church reflected in both liturgies of the one Roman Rite.

56 comments:

Henry said...

As usual, Peter Kwasniewski at New Liturgical Movement says it best:

“Pope Benedict XVI established equal canonical rights for the OF and the EF. He did not say they were altogether equal in every way; he noted that the OF is more prevalent, while the EF ‘must be given due honor for its venerable and ancient usage.”’ Nevertheless, for the immediate peace of the Church, what matters most is that, canonically speaking, they are equal.”

And, what’s so crucial for our bishops to recognize:

“The New Evangelization will stand or fall on the strength of authentic liturgical renewal, and this renewal will stand or fall depending on whether or not it is rooted in the traditional Latin Mass as an immense good in itself and as a constant point of reference for the Ordinary Form.”

Anonymous said...

Not a bad post, but I can't help but feel like we're celebrating the birth of a stillborn child.

Summorum Pontificum is sort of like immigration law: It's on the books, but nobody uses or enforces it--and when someone DOES, like, say, Sheriff Joe Arpaio, he is labeled and "extremist" (or as the current Vatican bureaucrats like to say, "crypto Lefebvrians").

I'd feel more like celebrating if there was a TLM within driving distance. As for now, it's just empty.

Marc said...

When I read things like paragraph 7, I thank God all the more for the SSPX.

Henry said...

Anonymous, I wonder which situation is more typical of the post-SP U.S. as a whole, yours or mine.

In mine, the difference is like night and day. Before SP, we a single reasonably near EF Mass every other Sunday. Now, our small diocese has 7 TLM-capable priests (5 ordained since 2000) and scheduled EF Masses in 5 different parish locations (2 every Sunday in driving distance for me, 2 others every other Sunday, one monthly).

Gene said...

Anonymous, well said.

Marc said...

I think Anonymous's situation is actually more prevalent, Henry. To balance your post, I'll share the situation in my archdiocese:

There is a TLM 6 times per year, one Sunday every other month in a small town an hour from Montgomery, the state capital. There is also one Sunday TLM per month in another small town about 30 minutes from Mobile (this parish might be a hold over from the indult days, but I'm not sure).

For comparison, the diocese to my north has a Sunday TLM each week in Birmingham at one parish and another parish in Huntsville is a personal parish for exclusively the TLM. There is also a Traditional monastery (formerly sedevacantist) between Birmingham and Huntsville.

In Mississippi, there is no TLM in either diocese.

I guess the situation is better in Louisiana. I was in New Orleans this past Sunday. The SSPX Chapel where I went to Mass was filled to capacity. I understand there are also some diocesan Sunday TLMs in the city.

It's definitely a mixed bag. On the whole, there are more Masses available. But there are still many of us being denied the Mass unjustly despite the motu proprio, which makes the long drives all the more difficult.

Anonymous said...

Henry, I don't know what is more typical of the post SP U.S., but I suspect your situation is more reflective of an area with a larger Catholic population and young, open-minded bishops. You are obviously not from either of the two Georgia dioceses.

The irony of this is that in an area where we already suffer from being outnumbered by protestants, we suffer doubly by not being able to enjoy the graces we are entitled to by our Catholic patrimony in the EF.

You can look again and again at different dioceses in America where some ghetto parish is slated for closing and it is turned over to the FSSP or made a TLM parish and the entire dynamic changes. It become the parish that is packed for Mass every Sunday (maybe not overnight, but it always happens) and they regain their financial footing. But our "shepherds" in many places don't like that model. A clear template for renewal is eschewed in favor of the fake, parish-closing, vocation-killing "renewal" we've experienced in the postconciliar Church.

This is only going to change when we get real dynamic leadership, which means a whole lot of very comfortable people will have to retire. I don't expect to see it in my lifetime.

JBS said...

Anonymous,

"...Your situation is more reflective of...a larger Catholic population and...open-minded bishops." Since Henry's diocese has the smallest percentage of Catholics in the USA, and since his bishop has, shall we say, little regard for the EF rites, your comment is stunningly comical! Henry's diocese has what it has because the faithful ask for it and won't take 'no' for an answer. Bishops do whatever the faithful with checkbooks tell them to do.

Henry said...

Anonymous: "I suspect your situation is more reflective of an area with a larger Catholic population and young, open-minded bishops."

Actually, my diocese is the most sparsely populated with Catholics, dead last among the 196 U.S. Catholic dioceses. But we do have ordinations exceeding the retirements of priests, and most if not all new young priests are vibrantly faithful (everywhere, I understand).

I believe the reality is that the EP depends upon individual priests to whom SP gives the right to celebrate it, not to bishops who are largely preoccupied with concerns other than liturgy.

Pater Ignotus said...

Anonymous 11:56 a.m. - You are being denied no graces because the EF is unavailable to you. There are no special or particular graces attached to an EF mass that are not available to you in an OF mass.

The OF is every bit a part of our Catholic patrimony as the EF. It is the one sacrifice of Calvary represented in an unbloody manner. It is "a sacrament of love, a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a paschal banquet in which Christ is consumed, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us." (SC 47)

If you, for whatever reasons, you choose not to receive the graces offered by the Sacrifice of the Mass in the OF, that does not amount to your being denied or refused grace.

Marc said...

Henry, your diocese is a great example of what brave priests can accomplish. I have had the pleasure of going to the Traditional Mass at two locations there.

Fr. JBS, as far as I can tell from speaking to priests here, they are afraid of what the bishop might do if the offer the Traditional Mass. Heck, they are afraid to put out kneelers for Communion at the OF for fear of episcopal retribution in the form of transfers and parish closings.

Anonymous, rest assured you are not alone. God does not expect the impossible from us. If there is no Mass within reasonable driving distance, the obligation to assist at Mass is relaxed. Keep fighting.

Bill Meyer said...

Henry, here in the Atlanta archdiocese, I am 43 miles (one way) from the nearest Latin Mass. Unless you consider the SSPX chapel, about 18 miles away.

In an archdiocese of 100 parishes, it is sad, to say the least, that there are apparently only three in which the Latin Mass is celebrated.

I think you are blessed in Knoxville, though of course, you have labored hard to make the current situation there a reality.

JBS said...

Five young men from Knoxville who were home-schooled and have a connection the the EF Mass are presently studying for the priesthood.

Marc said...

Fr. JBS, didn't you have a parishioner go to study with the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest? How is that going?

Anonymous said...

Ah, Pater Ignotus, I feared I might arouse your Novus Ordo At All Costs sensibilities by my comments about the graces and patrimony of the Extraordinary Form.

I don't expect you to understand this, much less respect it, but I will try to explain according to my limited learning, which I know cannot stand up against your superior education, which you never fail to flaunt in these discussions. Nonetheless, if you will bear with my ignorance…

I AM denied the patrimony of reverence, when the only Masses I can attend are in churches where people talk as loudly as they can the minute the last bit of music has stopped. I am more deeply denied that reverence when the priests refuse to do anything to discourage the empty din, but come in and chat as loudly as they can before Mass as they "work the room".

I AM denied the patrimony of the rich liturgical music and chant that organically developed when I am forced to listen to folk groups, canned music and keyboard players playing nothing but "relevant" "contemporary" worship music.

I AM denied the grace of silence when the only Masses offered make sure there is not one moment of silence offered for prayer.

I AM denied the grace of continuity when the mystery of the Church's ancient sacred language is suppressed, all the while living in a society that promotes tolerance for Islam, which has ITS own ancient sacred language. Why YES to them and NO to us?

I AM denied the grace of deeper reflection when the prayers that emphasize the sacrificial nature of the Mass are not available and I am instead forced to inhale while simplified and dumbed down prayers are uttered that emphasize "joy" and "community" while ignoring the reality of my unworthiness. It is difficult to fully appreciate the Eucharist without the contrast of a deep knowledge of how unworthy I truly am.

I could go on, but I think you get my drift. I am sure that with your superior education and longstanding reputation of tolerance that you can rip my assertions apart and put me in my place and I have no doubt you will. But for some of us "lesser" and "little" Catholics, we cannot forget the words of Pope Benedict who insisted that what was sacred for prior generations remains sacred for us as well.

Gene said...

Anonymous, I have seen no signs in any of Ignotus' posts that would indicate his having a "superior education."

JBS said...

Marc,

He's now Abbé Christian J., which in that community means he has begun philosophy studies.

Joseph Johnson said...

Marc,
When you say "here," to which diocese are you referring?

I am always keen to get more insight into the real status of the EF in the Diocese of Savannah as well as making comparisons to how the EF is faring in the contiguous dioceses. I know what I know but I'm always interested in what others can tell me on this issue.

The main problem in the Diocese of Savannah, as I know it, is the lack of priests who have sufficient knowledge of the EF AND are willing to offer it (even on a limited basis). For examples: My last pastor (in his mid 40's) had some very traditional liturgical preferences (he seemed sympathetic to the EF) but he plead ignorance of Latin. Conversely, my current pastor (in his 60's) says that he studied Latin for several years (a long time ago in the seminary) but he is of the more "progressive" liturgical bent and has no interest in celebrating the EF (as of the last time I asked him).

If we could only have more priests with knowledge AND willingness . . . Maybe this will happen one day when we get a priest still in his 30's!

Pater Ignotus said...

Anonymous 4:54 - The gift of grace is available to you in each mass celebrated - OF or EF. If you choose, because the music is not to your taste or the language is not your favorite or the vestments are too "plain" to suit your sensibilities - that's your issue, not mine and certainly not the Church's.

I would be interested in knowing which of the prayers of the English translation of the Roman Missal are "dumbed down," which fail to emphasize the sacrificial nature of the mass, which express so much joy that you, in your unworthiness, cannot get beyond...?

If having and using my education is "flaunting" such, then I am guilty - and proud to use the gift God and the Church (22 years in school, all of it in Catholic schools) has given me.

Marc said...

Joseph, I have moved from the Savannah Diocese and am now living in the Mobile Archdiocese.

Fr. JBS, I am happy to hear that. Each Thanksgiving, I have the joy of going to see my in-laws in St. Louis and attending Mass at the ICRSS oratory there. I have found the priests to be very holy and nice men with a very deep piety. And they are a very diverse group. Last Thanksgiving, the priest was saying the High Mass in the large church (we are usually there for the external solemnity of the dedication of their church). When the homily came, he ascended the pulpit. It was only then that I discovered he had a very thick accent (of some Asian persuasion). His Latin chant was so perfect, I had no idea! The priest to whom I went to Confession (during Mass), was French, and he was very kind and helpful.

Anyway, I'm very happy to hear about this. He will be in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pater Ignotus,

Where to begin?

In the TLM Collect, the priest prays:

"Almighty and everlasting God, Thou hast given Thy servants grace in the confession of the true Faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity and in the power of Thy majesty to adore the unity; grant that by steadfastness in the same Faith we may be defended from all adversities. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end."

Note the use of THE TRUE FAITH. Since the Novus Ordo concoction (thanks to the Consilium's protestant advisors) such terminology has been purged and our faith is treated as one of many valid faiths. The prayer also begs for the grace to be steadfast.

After the Gospel is read, the priest prays:

" May our sins be blotted out by the words of the Gospel" as opposed to the Novus Ordo's ever-existential "THE WORD OF THE LORD"

At the offertory, the priest prays:

"Receive, O Holy Father, almighty and eternal God, this spotless host, which I, Thine unworthy servant, offer unto Thee, my living and true God, for my countless sins, trespasses, and omissions; likewise for all here present, and for all faithful Christians, whether living or dead, that it may avail both me and them to salvation, unto life everlasting. Amen."

The most revered among us, the priest, the Alter Christus confesses his utter unworthiness and approaches the consecration with an open proclamation of humility that is just not seen in the Novus Ordo. We are not even at the consecration yet, and the priest prays:

"Receive, O holy Trinity, this oblation offered up by us to Thee in memory of the passion, resurrection, and ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and in honor of blessed Mary, ever a virgin, of blessed John the Baptist, of the holy apostles Peter and Paul, of these, and of all the saints, that it may be available to their honor and to our salvation; and may they whose memory we celebrate on earth vouchsafe to intercede for us in heaven. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen."

What a beautiful reminder of our place in the Church uniting us with the Church Triumphant. Do most Catholics today even KNOW what the Church Triumphant and Church Militant are? Except for All Souls Day, is any mention ever even MADE of the Church Suffering?

During the Canon, the priest prays:

"Wherefore, we beseech Thee, O Lord, graciously to receive this oblation which we Thy servants, and with us Thy whole family, offer up to Thee: dispose our days in Thy peace; command that we be saved from eternal damnation and numbered among the flock of Thine elect. Through Christ our Lord. Amen."

Later, after the Consecration, the priest prays:

"O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, Who, according to the will of the Father, through the co-operation of the Holy Ghost, hast by Thy death given life to the world: deliver me by this Thy most Sacred Body and Blood from all my iniquities, and from every evil; make me always cleave to Thy commandments, and never suffer me to be separated from Thee, Who with the same God, the Father and the Holy Ghost, livest and reignest God, world without end. Amen.

"Let not the partaking of Thy Body, O Lord Jesus Christ, which I, all unworthy, presume to receive, turn to my judgement and condemnation; but through Thy loving kindness may it be to me a safeguard and remedy for soul and body; Who, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, livest and reignest, God, world without end. Amen."

There is a constant awareness present in the Extraordinary Form of OUR responsibility to live in a state of Grace and approach the altar ONLY if we are fairly sure that we are in such a state. Even then, we are reminded of the majesty of this great Gift and our unspeakable unworthiness.

Anonymous said...

PART 2

It is much easier to pray properly during Communion when I do not have to fear that I am stepping upon particles of the Body of Christ from all the people receiving in the hand. The altar boys and patens assure us that no particles will touch the ground. Such care and reverence are almost scoffed at by the Novus Ordo establishment and certainly little or no concern for such sacrilege is ever shown.

VESTMENTS? How poorly you assume Father? This Mass has been prayed in wartime by priests wearing no more than a stole as their vestment.

MUSIC? Again you err in assuming that I prefer music to my tastes. NO MUSIC would be just fine. However, it must be admitted that prayer come much easier when we are not distracted by some flat-sounding cantor leading us in "On Eagle's Wings" or other such contrived tripe.

The point it the ritual itself. The reverence, the difference of the prayers and the sensibilities aroused by these much more reverent and much more precise prayers.

If you want to accuse me of having "issues", fine. Guilty as charged. The issues started when I was about 10 and even then I could see that someone higher up the ladder had taken something ancient and beautiful and tweaked it to pander to he lowest common denominator.

Maybe they though our attention spans were too short? Or that we needed to be entertained?

What I DO know is that people rise to the level of your expectations of them. For over 40 years the Church has expected less and less from its congregants. By switching to these low expectations of the laity, the laity has certainly responded by their willingness to pay less and less attention to God in their lives and almost no concern whatsoever for the state of the liturgy.

Django said...

PART 2

It is much easier to pray properly during Communion when I do not have to fear that I am stepping upon particles of the Body of Christ from all the people receiving in the hand. The altar boys and patens assure us that no particles will touch the ground. Such care and reverence are almost scoffed at by the Novus Ordo establishment and certainly little or no concern for such sacrilege is ever shown.

VESTMENTS? How poorly you assume Father? This Mass has been prayed in wartime by priests wearing no more than a stole as their vestment.

MUSIC? Again you err in assuming that I prefer music to my tastes. NO MUSIC would be just fine. However, it must be admitted that prayer come much easier when we are not distracted by some flat-sounding cantor leading us in "On Eagle's Wings" or other such contrived tripe.

The point it the ritual itself. The reverence, the difference of the prayers and the sensibilities aroused by these much more reverent and much more precise prayers.

If you want to accuse me of having "issues", fine. Guilty as charged. The issues started when I was about 10 and even then I could see that someone higher up the ladder had taken something ancient and beautiful and tweaked it to pander to he lowest common denominator.

Maybe they though our attention spans were too short? Or that we needed to be entertained?

What I DO know is that people rise to the level of your expectations of them. For over 40 years the Church has expected less and less from its congregants. By switching to these low expectations of the laity, the laity has certainly responded by their willingness to pay less and less attention to God in their lives and almost no concern whatsoever for the state of the liturgy.

JBS said...

Anonymous,

There are several problems with your comparisons, although I appreciate the broader point.

In the OF, after the Gospel, the deacon or priest stills says "per Evangelica dicta..." It's exactly the same as the EF.

The Roman Canon remains an option in the OF, and retains the prayers you mention before and after the Consecration.

Communion plates are still required in the OF, although there is wide-spread neglect of this duty.

Vestments and music can be traditional in the OF, and modern in the EF. A chasuble is always required in both forms.

Finally, I would note that the same priests who celebrate the OF poorly would do the same were they to use the EF rite.

Marc said...

Cardinal Ottaviani summed up the problems with the Novus Ordo very nicely. And, while I haven't read his book, Fr. Anthony Cekada has done extensive comparisons and pointed out additional problems in "Work of Human Hands."

Henry said...

JBS: "Finally, I would note that the same priests who celebrate the OF poorly would do the same were they to use the EF rite."

Yes, the state of the liturgy today is due less to the rite of Mass than to a malformed generation of priests and bishops.

Henry said...

JBS: "I would note that the same priests who celebrate the OF poorly would do the same were they to use the EF rite."

And this is one reason not to encourage priests to celebrate the traditional Latin Mass unless they themselves are personally motivated to do so. The last thing we want to see is the TLM celebrated unworthily. Surely better to not see it celebrated at all.

Django said...

JBS, I appreciate that you take my broader point. I don't deny any of the details you point out, however in the larger scheme of things, something--a great deal--seems lost when comparing the two forms of the Mass. I have never thought that there was an absence of grace in the Novus Ordo, or else I wouldn't bother clenching my teeth and attending each week. I also happen to believe that there is a significant number of Catholics, like myself who would like
Mass to be something savored rather than something endured and, to this day, I cannot understand the outright hostility so many priests and aging "hipster" Catholics show when it comes to mentioning the Traditional Latin Mass or the not-so-subtle wisecracks that often follow about Confession, nuns and Traditional Catholics.

If you could compare the graces of the Mass to nourishment, for some of us, the Novus Ordo is like looking at a bowl of baby food that has been enriched. It will supply the nutrients, but it is increasingly difficult to swallow. Some of us would like something to sink our teeth into.

I have no illusions. It's not going to happen in my lifetime. I accept the penance of attending annoying Masses and offer it up for future generations of Catholics.

Django said...

I also did not know that patens or Communion plates were required, which certainly speaks to the widespread neglect of this duty. I have only attended ONE Novus Ordo parish in my lifetime that retained this practice.

I cannot emphasize enough how much we should all think about this and think hard: Probably every time you do the Novus Ordo walk to receive Communion, regardless how YOU receive Him, you are very likely standing upon particles of the Body of Christ which have fallen from the hands of Catholics who insist on receiving in the hand. Those who vacuum and sweep the churches are literally consigning our savior's Body and Blood to the trash heap.

Bishop Athanasius Schneider believes that this much-ignored scandal is a huge crisis in our Church and one that few if any bishops seem prepared to deal with:

http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2014/06/bishop-athanasius-schneider-in-england.html

If there are any priests with a modicum of reverence reading this, I beg you: Get out the patens and use them. Discourage Communion in the hand. It is NOT the norm, but the result of an indult which was obtained by dishonest means by bishops who should have known better, led by a bishop who remains infamous after his death.

Marc said...

It is not true that the graces of the Novus Ordo and the Traditional Mass are the same. There are many reasons for this having to do with the nature of each Rite and the disposition of the attendees.

I do not agree that one must attend a Protestant worship service that happens to be presided over by a Catholic priest in order to fulfill the Mass obligation (if you believe the Novus Ordo to be so flawed, surely it follows that one cannot be bound to attend it). I see little difference between doing that and going to the local Episcopalian Church. If there is no Mass within reasonable driving distance, the obligation is relaxed.

The question is really whether you believe there is an unprecedented crisis in the Church today or not. And, if you do, how much are you willing to compromise with error and those who promulgate it? One cannot be bound to become a Protestant or other sort of heretic just because the hierarchy has decided to go that route for the time being. Obedience cannot constrain one to sin.

JBS said...

Django,

As for the communion plate, in addition to the rubrics of the OF missal itself (GIRM 118), the Vatican has reiterated that, "The Communion-plate for the Communion of the faithful should be retained, so as to avoid the danger of the sacred host or some fragment of it falling" (Redemptionis Sacramentum 93).

Templar said...

After attending the 12:10 at our beloved St Joseph's this past weekend (because the monthly TLM was once again cancelled) I can honestly say I went out to my car and wept while my children laughed at what they had just experienced. The experience moved me several steps closer to acceptance of the fact that there is no Grace to be received at your standard OF Mass.

Pater Ignotus said...

Anonymous - In the OF the priest, before he proclaims the Gospel, says quietly, "Cleanse my heart and my lips, almighty God, that I may worthily proclaim your holy Gospel." At the end of the Gospel the priest says aloud, "The Gospel of the Lord," and quietly while kissing the book, "Through the words of the Gospel may our sins be wiped away."

There are multiple times throughout the mass when the priest and people acknowledge their unworthiness:

"Brothers and sisters, let us acknowledge our sins, and so prepare ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries."

"I confess to almighty God, and to you, my brothers and sisters, that I have greatly sinned, in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done and in what I have failed to do, through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault: therefore I ask Blessed Mary ever-Virgin, all the Angels and Saints, and you, my brothers and sisters, to pray for me to the Lord our God."

Or he may use one of the seven formulas of the three-fold invocations, each of which acknowledges our unworthiness.

"May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life.

In the Gloria: "...you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us..."

The collect for December 18 includes an admission of unworthiness, as do many of the collects, "Grant, we pray, almighty God, that we, who are weighed down from of old by slavery beneath the yoke of sin may be set free by the newness of the long-awaited Nativity of your Only Begotten Son...."

Or the Mass for Giving thanks got God (49A), "O God, who always listen mercifully to your servants in distress, we humbly beseech you, as we give thanks for your kindness, that, free from all evil, we may constantly serve you in gladness...."

It simply is not true that the OF does not recognize - repeatedly - in its prayers our unworthiness and our need for God's mercy. There is a constant awareness present in the OF of our sin and our need for God's grace and mercy to restore us to the state of grace.

If you choose - and it is entirely your choice - to refuse to acknowledge that the OF is as replete with acknowledgements of our sinfulness as the EF, then you simply are choosing to ignore the very words printed on the pages of the missal.

And if you are worried about stepping on the "particles of the Lord" then you have to be equally worried about inhaling the "particles of the Lord" that are present in the air in every church where wine is consecrated and where that same Precious Blood evaporates into the atmosphere. Shall we turn off the HVAC systems so that Jesus is not sucked into the filters on the system only to be vacuumed away each time the filters are cleaned?

Anonymous said...

"...so that Jesus is not sucked into the filters...only to be vacuumed away..." Nice,Ignotus, nice.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc and Templar it is heretical to say that any Mass whatever rite or style gives more or less grace. The appropriation of the grace varies from person to person depending on their disposition in either form of the Roman Rite Mass. A truly faithful Catholic properly disposed and imbued with orthodox Catholic spirituality will receive all the graces of Calvary at a Mass that is validly celebrated but perhaps lacking in aesthetics due to the idiosyncrasies of the priest or style of music or whatever. It really hinges on the humility of the Catholic who sees the heart of the Mass whatever form.

Marc said...

Templar, I share your pain. This is not about aesthetics or style, as some would erroneously have us believe. I'm content to be labeled a heretic by those whom I believe to be in error themselves.

JBS said...

I agree with Pater Ignotus up until his final paragraph, where he can appear to be at odds with established piety and current canonical norms. As a rule, he doesn't seem to understand that one can toss out the bathwater while retaining and even cherishing the baby.

Joseph Johnson said...

I always thought the teaching on the Real Presence depended on the fragments (or drops) being visible to normal eyesight (I say "normal" eyesight because a consecrated host obviously is Jesus Truly Present even to a blind or sight-impaired person).

It used to be a common practice that if a Host was dropped and not consumed it was to be placed in a glass of water on the altar (maybe over a period of days) until it dissolved and was no longer visible (the idea being that the Real Presence is no longer there because the Host is disintegrated and no longer visible, even as particles). FSSP priests still use this practice. Even then, I suppose the better practice would be to pour this water into the sacrarium and not into the sink drain.

By the same reasoning, if the Precious Blood evaporates then it is no longer visible in its liquid form---hasn't the Real Presence left it at that point?

My point is that particles of Hosts are often visible (even on a floor) so they are just as much the Real Presence of Jesus as a whole consecrated Host. Evaporated consecrated wine is not visible and probably (like the dissolved Host) is no longer the Precious Blood.

Consequently, hand patens for Communion make logical (and theological) sense.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Not only heretical but schismatic and anathema to say the grace ofCalvary is less or does not exist in the OF compared to the EF is, well anathema.

Marc said...

I'm also content to be labeled a schismatic by those whom I believe to be in error themselves.

Henry said...

Fr. McDonald,

Certainly the intrinsic merit of any valid Mass is infinite, but when there was only a single form in the Latin rite, it was standard theology—cf. any classical manual of sacramental theology (e.g., Nicholas Gihr)—that any two celebrations of the Mass were likely to differ in their external merit, that is, their effectiveness as channels of grace to the particular individual, depending on variances in his disposition, in the manner of celebration of the Mass, the effect of the latter on the former, etc.

Would it not stand to reason that this is even more so true in this era of much greater differences in liturgical celebrations from one Mass to another, one time and place to another? Indeed, given the weakness of human beings, would it not be fatuous to suggest that a sloppy and irreverent Mass would be as efficacious for every individual present as would one filled with reverence and devotion in every aspect of its celebration?

Otherwise, it seem a waste of effort for a priest or parish to do its best in the liturgy. Why should some work so hard to make every Mass “be all that it can be” as an occasion of grace for all involved?

George said...

Joseph Johnson
Good points (your post @ 4:56)

Pater Ignotus:
"And if you are worried about stepping on the 'particles of the Lord' then you have to be equally worried about inhaling the 'particles of the Lord' that are present in the air in every church where wine is consecrated and where that same Precious Blood evaporates into the atmosphere."
It comes down to the respect for God -for the Body and Blood of Our Lord. How much pains would we go to in protecting something of far less value? Communicants should be taught how they are to receive because if done properly, one of the hands serves the purpose of the paten. It wouldn't be a bad idea to use a paten however.
As far as Our Lord being wounded, this is much more so when a person receives Him in a state of serious sin than when a particle of the consecrated Bread or Wine falls or is spilled. As far as the particles in the air and evaporation, God takes care of that.

Joseph Johnson said...

George,
As to one of the hands serving the purpose of the paten (if receiving in the hand): at least with the hand paten, the priest takes it from the server after Communion and tamps any visible Particles into the chalice for the Ablution which he will consume himself.

People receiving on the hand (which I think shouldn't be favored) should examine their hands after receiving and pick up any visible particles with their tongue, I suppose (as in the early Church era as described in Bishop Schneider's book, "Dominus Est").

HAL said...

I'm sorry, Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

Gene said...

Indeed, George. The Holy Spirit is not trapped in the elements…that would be idolatry. God protects the Real Presence from abuse or denigration by simply removing it. He also protects it from the cynicism of modernist, irreverent Priests who speak of it being "sucked up in vacuums."

Pater Ignotus said...

Pin/Gene - and being sucked up in vacuums is far more "irreverent" "It is much easier to pray properly during Communion when I do not have to fear that I am stepping upon particles of the Body of Christ from all the people receiving in the hand."

Potomac Two-Step, anyone? (That's self-serving hypocrisy for those who don't know the quote.)

Gene said...

Hey, HAL…I know a little song. Do you want to hear it? "Daisy, Daisy, tell me your answer true…"

Anonymous said...

Gene...do you really mean
"Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do"?

These kids today....

Joseph Johnson said...

I'm sorry, I just don't get why the Church was once so careful and scrupulous in the way it had its clergy handle the Eucharist and the way it had the laity receive (hand patens, no touching with hands by laity, priests with joined fingers after Consecration until purified at the Ablution, sacrariums, specific practices in handling dropped Hosts, not to mention the need to receive worthily, etc.)

Our belief in the Real Presence has, theoretically, not changed since Vatican II but we have surely become a great deal more lax in how we approach and handle the Eucharist (which I think diminishes, rather than reinforces, belief). Why were particles such a concern for such a long time and now people who think we should still show this same carefulness (like myself) get scoffed at?

Geez, sometimes I feel like the kid who still believed in Santa Claus in the fifth grade!

Anonymous said...

The manner in which P.I. chooses to use quotation marks speaks volumes.

Gene said...

Templar, what happened Sunday?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 12:14 - "Wow!" Now the "manner" in which a person "uses" quotes" is "revelatory." This "is" utterly "amazing" and speaks "volumes."

JBS said...

Henry is certainly right in saying that a valid Mass in either form offers infinite grace, but that a poorly celebrated Mass can limit the participants' receptivity to the grace.

As far as validity of a particular celebration of Mass, or a particular form of the Roman Mass, is concerned, it is for bishops in union with the bishop of Rome to make such determinations. Priests, laymen and even academic theologians do not do make such judgments.

JBS said...

Well, judging by the comments here, I think we can say that Summorum Pontificum has yet to heal the rupture in the Church.

Henry said...

JBS, when the EF Mass and the OF Mass are both routinely celebrated in most parishes, and when many Catholics routinely attend both, and people have hangups about neither, then I'd say that Summorum Pontificum will have healed the rupture in the Church. But right now there are only a few such parishes, and a few such people, so the work on the new evangelization remains undone.

Templar said...

And in the western world, whenever and wherever the EF is celebrated regularly, it grows Parishes faster, and produces more conversions and vocations (proportionally) than any OF Parish. Yup, let's keep hiding that light under the bushel.