Saturday, May 12, 2018


In this Mass posted below, just what is being worshiped and sacrificed? Mass as a sacrifice is being sacrificed!

Music is being worshiped in all its eclectic forms, language too, creativity as well, convivial meal too. The congregation certainly. The lay ministries undoubtedly!

And wasn't every parish in the world mandated by the Vatican to stop consecrating the precious blood in glass pitchers and the use of glass forbidden?????????? And isn't communion under both kinds forbidden for large scale celebrations????????

And this Mass celebrated by two cardinals (at least) of the Church who believe that doctrinal/liturgical  development applies especially to the Mass so much so that it doesn't in any way resemble what most OF parishes experience today!

You don't have to watch the full thing, but watch portions, like the offertory, the altar set-up, etc.

What in the name of God and all that is holy would a Catholic time traveler from exclusively the EF Mass, as we call it today, think about this? Would they think they are on Mars?


Dan said...

They would think that "this is not the Catholic Church," and I'm beginning to think that they might be on to something.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Precious pageantry.

Henry said...

This was the Los Angeles RE Congress in 2011. It's liturgy is still just as raunchy 7 years later, even with an archbishop who otherwise seems faithful.

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

Hey, Fr. Kavanaugh - what's this??? The opening song a "traditional Mozambique" melody with words the narrator had to translate, because, what???, the people attending don't understand the language it's sung in???? But I thought we went to the vernacular so that EVERYBODY attending can understand the language, you know, so they can ACTIVELY PARTICIPATE, right, because I think you argued it makes most sense people can best participate when they understand the language.

Oh, but the audience seems to have a program that probably translated the words of the song for them. But you argued that should not be necessary.

Oh, aren't the songs included in the mandate of the vernacular? And in Spanish and an Asian language too, which I didn't understand. But is that okay, because at least some of the people can actively participate in Spanish, but I hope they weren't expecting those who don't know Spanish or the Asian language to actively participate.

And one "verse" of the Kyrie was in Spanish. I didn't understand it.

Wait! Holy Cow! The first reading is read in Vietnamese!!! I don't understand Vietnamese!!! How in the world could I have actively participated????? Oh wait, the audience looks at the program where the words are translated into English (and Spanish, I think) but you said we shouldn't have to use a program or missal.

The responsorial psalm is in Spanish. Oh, I don't know Spanish! I can't respond! Now what? No active participation for me, I guess.

The second reading in Spanish. Oh geez. Well, forget this. I can't actively participate at all, because I don't understand the language.

(at this point I had to stop watching the video because I had to go out. But I would guess this was pretty much how it went all throughout...)

Mass in the vernacular. What could go wrong?

God bless.

Gene said...

Bee, This is typical of libs. When they do it, it is ok.

TJM said...


You nailed it but don't expect logic or consistency from liberals. It's all about feeeeee lins, whoa, whoa,whoa feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee lins

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

"But I thought we went to the vernacular so that EVERYBODY attending can understand the language, you know, so they can ACTIVELY PARTICIPATE, right, because I think you argued it makes most sense people can best participate when they understand the language."

Alas, Bee, I wasn't on the liturgy planning team for this one....

Tom Makin said...

Please God Bishop Barron wasn't there. An absurd display of secularism. Was waiting on the human sacrifice!

TJM said...

Liturgy Planning Teams should be abolished, they serve no purpose other than to make lefties feel important about themselves. We have the Missale Romanum with all of the music for the Mass already there. Nothing to plan other than trivialities

John Nolan said...

'Liturgy planning teams'. What a nonsense. Liturgy is a given, a tradition which may develop organically over the centuries, but is not an on-the-spot manufactured product, to quote Benedict XVI.

Choirs need to be trained, servers need to be trained, clergy need to be trained - but only in the service of a liturgy which is far more important than themselves, and of which they are its servants.

To argue otherwise is to embrace a modernist heresy which, when implemented after V2, succeeded in emptying the churches.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Do you know when the first liturgy commission was created?

At Mt. Sinai:

When the people saw that Moses was delayed in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said to him, “Come, make us a god who will go before us; as for that man Moses who brought us out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has happened to him” (Exodus 32:1).

TJM said...

Father Fox,

I am a huge admirer of yours but I am not following your post

rcg said...

TJM. First Liturgy Planning Committee yielded a Golden Calf.

TJM said...


Comedy Gold!!!!!

Victor said...

One can see here the problem with the whole idea of active participation, the cornerstone of the liturgical movement and of its greatest accomplishment, Sacrosanctum Concilium. Full active participation is impossible in assembly-based worship because you can never accommodate the differing strokes of every folk. You have to deal with commonalities, such as language, cultural aptitudes, etc. which differ for each individual. Liturgical committees are needed to determine these commonalities of each liturgical community, the inculturation, but such attempts will always exclude some. Indeed, by nature, assembly-based worship is exclusionary because you must be part of that assembly by virtue of its cultural and social exigencies. If I do not speak Spanish or fail to appreciate the holiness of Mariachi bands in the liturgy, I am in principle excluded from that full conscious active participation in the Latino liturgy, for instance.

Cardinal Sarah has recently had something to say about this inculturation, that it is God descending and entering into the life, the moral conduct, the cultures and customs of men so as to free them from sin and introduce them into the Trinitarian life, not the other way around.

In the God-based liturgy of the EF, the liturgy speaks to everyone and to no one. It speaks to everyone because it is the same everywhere, worshiping God in the best manner hitherto possible irregardless of one's status or configuration in society. It speaks to no one because it is not understanding the words that matters as much as allowing each individual, in Silence, to pray to God in his own words, a deeply personal prayer, far greater than the contrived prayers of the NO.

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

Fr. Kavanaugh on May said:
"Alas, Bee, I wasn't on the liturgy planning team for this one...."

Good dodge....but still doesn't address the issue that we see the same problem in a cross cultural setting that was cited as a problem with a liturgy in Latin and the excuse for why we had to go to the vernacular to achieve "active participation."

God bless.

ByzRC said...

Yuck. If that's what you want, just be protestant.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

No, Bee, it's not a dodge.

95%+ of Catholics attend a mass celebrated in their vernacular language.

A single (or even a handful) of masses celebrated in a number of languages doesn't lead to the conclusion that we should use Latin, a language 95%+ of Catholic do not speak, for the celebration of the mass universally.

TJM said...

Bee - 1
Kavanaugh - 0

We all had our Missals - so going to the vernacular was a big con job. We are a universal Church and per
Veterum Sapientia, Latin is the language that joins the Church of today.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

I don't agree that Latin "joins the Church of today" and I wonder if it ever did. It joined the educated clergy and the few lay men and fewer lay women who knew Latin in the past. But the Church is far, far larger than the educated few.

TJM said...


Good to know you are St. John XXIII’ s superior and reject his teaching. You are clericalism on steroids.We all appreciate your condescension!

Henry said...

In reality, most traditional Catholics--even though they are engaged much more actively in a TLM than they would or could be at a Novus Ordo Mass—have little understanding of Latin beyond the most familiar chants—the Gloria, Credo, Sanctus etc. And their worship would not be improved by more understanding of Latin. Because it's not the Latin that makes the traditional Mass superior. But rather its embodiment of those features of traditional Catholic worship that have sustained faith and devotion down through many centuries during which most unlettered people probably understood Latin no better than most do today.

In short, people don't attend a traditional Latin Mass because of the Latin. They attend it because of the tradition and the spirituality it conveys.

In my own case, this is fact rather than opinion. Though familiar with scriptural and liturgical Latin--through many years of avocational parsing of Latin prayers, hymns and readings, comparing them with multiple translations, reading the Bible and saying the Divine Office in Latin—it’s almost irrelevant to my personal worship at Mass, because I pray the Mass largely in English following my missal, rather than in Latin.

Incidentally, when I attend a vernacular Mass, my familiarity with English is an almost insuperable barrier to prayerful participation--because I'm mostly forced to listen to someone else praying aloud, instead if praying myself. Seriously, with no knowledge of Spanish. I’ve participated better at a Spanish Mass with an English translation in hand.

So repeated reference to people’s ignorance of Latin—as though this were of some relevance to actual worship—is just another red herring, which betrays ignorance of traditional worship—whether in Latin or in archaic Greek or in Old Church Slavonic or in Aramaic--as well as of language.

TJM said...


Well said.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Henry - I would contend that we encounter within the mass, celebrated in the NO or the EF, a reality understood by our Tradition that is much more substantial, and potentially transformative, than the language used for the celebration. This notion is supported by the multiple forms of celebrations that are present among the multiple Rites of the Church.

"For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch."

That is the Tradition, the spirituality that is conveyed through the Eucharist.

The mass is, essentially for us, a communal, not a personal act. It is an action of the whole Church, Head and Body. This reality flows from the Trinitarian nature of the Christian faith

It is:
- thanksgiving and praise to the Father;
- the sacrificial memorial of Christ and his Body;
- the presence of Christ by the power of his word and of his Spirit.

Then Card Ratzinger wrote, "If until that time we had thought of the Church primarily as a structure or organization, now at last we began to realize that we ourselves were the Church. The Church is much more than an organization: it is the organism of the Holy Spirit, something that is alive, that takes hold of our inmost being. This consciousness found verbal expression with the concept of the 'Mystical Body of Christ', a phrase describing a new and liberating experience of the Church."

I think that language is relevant to actual worship. The very fact that Liturgiam Authenticam makes such a big deal over language is an indication that this is true. "The Roman Rite, like all the great historical liturgical families of the Catholic Church, has its own style and structure that must be respected in so far as possible in translation. The Instruction repeats the call of earlier papal documents for an approach to the translation of liturgical texts that sees it not so much a work of creative inventiveness as one of fidelity and exactness in rendering the Latin texts into a vernacular language, with all due consideration for the particular way that each language has of expressing itself. The special needs that must be addressed when making translations intended for newly evangelized territories are mentioned, and the Instruction also discusses the conditions under which more significant adaptations of texts and rites may occur, referring the regulation of these issues to the Instruction Varietates legitimae."

I do believe that, in Catholic worship, language really does matter. Certainly our liturgy is not ALL about language, but spoken prayers, readings from Scripture, vows spoken (they must be spoken or visually acknowledged) effect the Sacrament of Marriage, blessings are bestowed, decades of rosaries recited in common - all of these engage us at the level of the language used.

I truly believe we can be engaged best in a language we understand.

ByzRC said...

Henry -

I appreciate your points. I too find the TLM to be attractive more for the spirituality it provides as opposed to the Latin it relies upon. Putting aside the hand missal, the NO is clearly more understandable from the perspective of just sitting/kneeling and absorbing. The key element that is missing (at least to me) is the spirituality - the sense of reverence, awe, enchantment etc. that is inherent to the TLM.

As for the Divine Liturgy - most weeks, liturgy where I attend is celebrated mostly in English with some Slavonic (where Slavonic is used is not rigidly fixed). I find it to be a nice balance which reminds us of our roots yet, does not prevent us from understanding the Epistle and Gospel. At the same time, the spirituality that is so unique to the Christian East is completely unencumbered by the dominant vernacular. This aside, I have sought out liturgy that is mostly in Slavonic in the past as it possesses an etherial beauty when sung that I find to be appealing. Do I understand every word? No. Though my understanding of Slavonic is stronger than Latin, I don't think that understanding every single word is critical to the experience itself. There are plenty of other actions/cues to fill in the gaps.

TJM said...


Priests of a certain generation, without hesitation or any sense of irony dismiss the use of Latin in the Mass, notwithstanding the very words of Mediator Dei, Veterum Sapientia, or Sacrosanctum Concilium because ultimately it is all about them, not the Church or the Faithful. They lack the intellectual honesty or introspection to see where their attitudes have brought us - a collapse of Sunday Mass attendence in our own lifetime. Many of us elders recall a time when Sunday Mass was standing room only, attended by all ages and social groups. Today, it is generally Easter or Christmas where we can hope to see that.

In the Latin Church, the Latin language has for almost two millenia been a unifying influence in the Church which has always tried to unite the faithful through a uniform liturgy; and the fundamental reason why she has succeeded has been the use of a single universal language — Latin. The Roman Mass in the Latin tongue was the most splendid and eloquent manifestation and demonstration of the world unity of the Catholic faith. Pius XII underscored that point in Mediator Dei stating that the use of Latin “affords at once an imposing sign of unity and an effective safeguard against the corruption of pure doctrine”. St. John XXIII perhaps sensing how small the world had become due to air travel, reiterated in Veterum Sapientia stated that "Latin is the language which joins the Church of today."

Protestant Churches, after the Protestant Revolt, were quick to move to a vernacular liturgy and the results have not been impressive. No Protestant Denomination has ever had the reach or influence of the Roman Catholic Church in any century. Their congregations were already on a death spiral when the liturgical "elites" in the Catholic Church in the 1960s decided that the Catholic Church should ape the Protestants and go for a vernacular liturgy when there was no evidence to suggest vernacularization of the liturgy nurtured their faith or grew their numbers.

The vernacularization of the Roman Mass in a couple of generations has resulted in closed churches and a continuing downward spiral in Sunday Mass attendence. There has been no Springtime, no nurturing or growing the Faith for the majority of Catholics. It takes a contumacious or dull mind to hold otherwise. The only vitality in the American Church today is with those parishes which elect to have a least one Latin Mass on Sunday or parishes dedicated to that purpose. These congregations are young and enthusiastic. They are the future. The typical vernacular Mass has proven banal, trite, and boring. That's why when Hollywood makes a movie which portrays some aspect of Catholicism, there is Gregorian Chant, polyphony, and splendid altars and vestments. Gather Us In, stripped down Churches and burlap chasubles just don't cut it unless you are aesthetically moribound.

Henry we will soldier on. Deus Vult!