Those who have a taste for this image have been repudiated in the last four years or so. The irony in this look is that it comes from the masculine ethos of the EF Mass in terms of its army like marching regimentation but its very feminine ethos for liturgical garb. For many, this photo is the epitome of what is wrong with the EF Mass and recovery of its ethos in the OF Mass :
Let's face it, the liturgy has become a product. For some it is new and improved (meaning for those who only experienced the post Vatican II Mass, the EF Mass is the new and improved.) For others who knew the EF Mass when the Church was at her peak in the USA, the new is certainly seen as a part of the overall devolement and corruption of the Church in this country.
How can we be rational when it comes to the Mass given what has happened liturgically and otherwise in the Church and that the hand of God is somehow in it all despite the chaos and messiness of the Church today?
I think those who love Latin and the EF Mass must understand that the one area that most Catholics, traditional Catholics at the time of Vatican II, truly appreciated was the inclusion of some vernacular in the Mass. It was exciting and made participating in the Mass easier to watch as one didn't have to look at their personal missal for the vernacular translation. As a child of 12 years old it was for me a breath of fresh air.
Mind you, it was the Tridentine Mass or what was called the 1965 Missal. The ceremony was the same, the solemnity was the same and above all the reverence was the same.
Now I have to admit my father preferred the 8 AM Low Mass, so I can't judge music of that period. I have recollections of a few high Masses that made an impression on me, such as midnight Mass. But my main memory of the pre-Vatican II Mass was the Low Mass.
It wasn't until liturgical theologians of the 60's and 70's promoted experimentation with the revision of the Mass, mainly musical experimentation, that a course was set for what is now called the liturgy wars.
On top of that, what was called real bread and communicants eating and drinking made a mockery of the scrupulous care that priests and laity once took with even the smallest particle of a Host. Crumbs and splashes of Precious Blood didn't seem to matter anymore. The flippant remark, God can take care of Himself sums up all the irreverence. The apex of changing liturgical reverence towards the Sacred Species was standing for Holy Communion, receiving in the hand and drinking from a common chalice.
Then a departure from the texts of the Mass with verbose ad libs and changing of the words of the Mass turned the Mass into the playground for the corrupt spirituality and idiosyncrasies of the priest. And this was extended to liturgy committees when they seized control of planning the Mass. Creativity, not tradition, reigned supreme.
However, where traditionalists go wrong is to think that the EF Mass will ever be reimposed upon the Church in an all Latin all clerical form.
Our best hope is for the resacralization of the OF Mass along the lines of the EF Mass is the Ordinariate's Divine Worship, the Missal. That missal is that hope! What that missal has the current OF Mass could have as an appendix today!
The one area that is not truly being addressed by the Magisterium is music in the Mass. Way too many styles are being allowed under the ambivalent heading of inculturation. If you have a secular mentality about rhythm and bodily movement during music, then what constitutes reverence is called into question and anything goes from the black Gospel perspective to the Pentecostal, neither of which are Catholic but have Protestant roots which evolved from secular styles and tastes, even fads.
The other area that traditionalists will never ultimately succeed is banning the laity of either sex from liturgical roles of lector, EMHC and altar servers.
What needs to take place is a formal program for installing adults as lectors and communion ministers. There should be a sufficient number who are actually installed have undergone a "seminary" course curriculum which includes doctrine, spirituality and promises.
Many pastors are unscrupulous in selecting lay ministers and the term minister implies ordination. I don't know how many lawsuits there have been from lay ministers taking advantage of vulnerable children or adults, as this is not reported at all.
The hope for the future is the current OF Missal redesigned in such a way that it appears to be a vernacular EF Mass. Mandating Latin for the Canon and fixed parts of the Mass would be a wonderful solution to maintaining why the Latin Rite Mass is called the Latin Rite. The changing parts could be the vernacular exception.
I would say that the single most important recovery from the EF Missal is kneeling for Holy Communion for the OF Missal. If Communion in the hand it allowed, the ancient form of it should be mandated. All we need to do it to look to the Episcopalians who do not formally accept the dogma of transubstantiation but nonetheless receive their communion in the hand and in the most reverent way possible.
In doing so the current OF Mass will be what Sacrosanctum Concilium actually requested, minor simplifications, some vernacular and "full, conscious and active participation."
But with that said, the EF Mass can still flourish and make its way for those congregations that have it to include the FSSP and SSPX along with parishes like my current one which embraces both forms of the Mass with no difficulty.