Thursday, December 1, 2011


From this...

to this?

Be grateful that we have the corrected translation of the Latin Mass into English. This is a huge reform in the right direction. Catholics who belong to the Latin Rite deserve a Latin Rite Mass. The corrected English translation gives us that. It is more than just being literal in translating the Latin into English, it is about devotion and spirituality. The Latin reformed Mass never did away with the spiritual and devotional use of words that the uncorrected English did. Why did that occur? We'll find out at the Last Judgement.

With that said, I don't see a new missal that is more like the 1962 or the 1965. What I do see as through clairvoyance is the possibility of two things one of which is already happening in some places:

1. Bishops of local dioceses will allow explicitly the Mass to be celebrated Ad Orientem, but under strict guidelines so that the laity aren't yanked around on the whim of the priest who might be celebrating Mass.

2. The Ordinary Form Missal will be allowed to be celebrated using the 1962 Order of Mass except for the Liturgy of the Word and in the vernacular

The second option simply means that the Prayers at the Foot of the altar would be restored; the Introit, offertory and communion antiphons would be sung or spoken as in the 1962 manner; the offertory will be the 1962 version and the Communion Rite would be the 1962 version. This would be very simple to accomplish with a simple insert for the current missal. In this option only the Roman Canon would be prayed. Actually, the insert could be a permanent feature of the new missal as it is further published, in the mean time a simple additional insert could be used. All you would need is the order of the Mass with the 1962 rubrics (in English) and the rubrics for the Roman Canon in English, but spoken aloud, and the Communion Rite. Everything else in the missal would remain the same--the best of both worlds and so easy to accomplish that one Mass in multiple Mass parishes such as St. Joseph could easily take over an existing Mass with the 1962 order of the Mass in the vernacular and with the Ordinary Form calendar and lectionary--it would be not big deal in other words!

Other reforms to the current missal will concern art, architecture and music. There will be stricter norms for music so that the silly season symbolized by Elvis Presley is eradicated from the current Liturgy.

I say this because we must be realistic about what reforms will occur and what won't. The Ordinary Form of the Mass is here to stay as is the Extraordinary Form and for most of us for the rest of our lives.


Gene said...

Do you think we will get to the point, generally and at St. Jo's in particular, where one regular Sunday Mass is always the EF?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

If we were averaging between 150 to 200 people at the once a month EF I would consider it. However, we only average about 50 to 70 and many of those are not from our parish. I just don't see enough people clamoring for the EF to the point that I could eliminate one of the OF's for an EF. Our 12:10 PM is the likely candidate, but this Mass is almost filled and if it became an EF Mass only about 100 would show up. I don't think it is the form of the EF that is not appreciated, most laity love worshiping in their own language. The first change to the EF Mass in 1965 was for English in a significant amount for the Mass and in an English were close to our corrected English. People, old and young loved it and this was the best thing about the reform of the Mass initially--until the Elvis mentality took over and the equivalent English was imposed.

Gene said...

Once again, if the laity were catechized about the EF and the history of all this was explained and there were preparatory classes (Coffee and Conversation on Sunday would be an excellent time), I'll bet the numbers attending would double. How about an ad in the paper: St. Joseph's Catholic Church is now celebrating the Mass in the Extra Ordinary Form (Latin Rite) every Sunday at 12:10 p.m. All Catholics (as well as those of other faiths) are welcome. Unless you think an ad is too tacky. I mean, we now have two Priests who celebrate the EF. How many parishes in this country do you think can say that? I think we should capitalize on this.

Anonymous said...

Frajm, this made me think that the OF would be, essentially, the most 'relaxed' form of the Mass. This inverts what has happened the last few decades where the OF was the generally most reverent form and 'clown mass' was an option.

I agree with Pin that a significant number of people will seek the EF as they are educated and begin to understand it. What I found in my area is that the people who prefer the OF resent the people who like the EF thinking the EF people feel superior. I can see where that comes from, although I have not heard anyone claim they are personally superior, but that the form of the Mass is more reverent, etc. OF supporters have made statements that they feel their devotion is just as great and that their music is acceptable, etc.

It is a practical issue that cannot be solved, but managed by the pastor so that the people who desire the EF are known to be attending a more meaningful personal devotion, (which is how they actually feel).


Marc said...

Father, how does your response to pinanv525 gel with the Holy Father's statements about making sure "a stable group of the faithful" are provided the Traditional Rites of the Church? The Holy Father was pretty specific that there was no mandatory size for the "stable group" and that they didn't have to be parishioners of the particular parish.

I'm seriously not trying to debate or claim you're doing anything wrong... I'm just curious how you see this from a pastoral perspective.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

We're providing the Mass weekly and once a month for our stable group with while small is stable. I've not seen any growth, but from the initial experience there has been decline, not so much with the Tuesday Mass, but with the Sunday Mass.

Marc said...

You are correct. I wasn't thinking of the Thesday Mass. Given the low number of attendees, I think you're probably doing the right thing. I wish we could catechize the people to the point where everyone attended the Latin Mass, but that isn't realistic as you point out in this blog post.

Anonymous said...

2:00pm on Sunday is just about the most inconvenient time of day. That explains why I cannot go as often as I certainly would like.

If once a month it was offered at a regular Mass time instead, then the workload on the priests would be less and it wouldn't be getting rammed down anyones' throat, and it might be more accessible.

just a thought...perhaps the 5pm Mass?

This is tricky.
At the end of the day, the pastor needs to do what works for him, because he cannot please everyone.

Anonymous said...

The traditional rites of the Church are provided at St. Joseph Church daily. The EF is not the only "traditional" mass celebrated there.

Templar said...

The TLM Community originally from Thunderbolt GA, which now has it's WEEKLY Sunday TLM at the Cathedral in Savannah, numbered roughly 50 as a stable group when it was granted weekly status and has grown now to roughly 75-100 in stable attendance. These are the numbers I can find on the Una Voce websites they could be higher now, but the point is, they were smaller than what we have now at Macon when they were granted a weekly Mass, and they were not of the Parish either, traveling some 15 miles away from their Home Parish in Thunderbolt.

Do I sound ungrateful? Perhaps, and I do try not to be, but it is hard, so very hard, to constantly be given crumbs and be told to be happy about it. We're not asking for padded pews for Pete's sake, we're asking for THE MASS and regular access to it on Sunday. When the Diocese doesn't make those who seek the TLM welcome do not be surprised when those who seek it leave for the FSSP and SSPX Parishes in Mableton and Roswell, which by the way I can tell you with some authority is where some of our St Joseph "decrease in TLM attendance" has gone. They are tired of waiting after 3 years for it to expand at St Joseph. The TLM is not some "neat show" to come watch every once in a while. For those to whom it has an appeal it is like denying us water or oxygen for the 3 weeks in between Sunday High Masses. A High Mass too much for every Sunday, okay, give us a Low Mass and the High just once a month. That's fine, but by all that is Holy please I just want to attend Mass without the distractions, without the Priest looking at me, and where I can receive Communion on my knees without being made to feel like some sort of Pariah.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 5:49,

I strongly suspect you are really Ignotus but since you chose to be Anonymous this time I thought I'd do the same.

That said, I believe I understand what you mean when you say that the OF is a "traditional rite" of the Church in that it is a Roman Rite Mass based on Sacred Tradition (as are all Catholic rites). It is a valid form of the Mass which consists of the elements needed to make it so, (fair enough).

Nonetheless, it is also the first form of a Catholic Mass to ever have been completely rewritten (but still consisting of the basic parts of a rite of Mass) as opposed to times past when the Roman Rite was always received from the past and merely organically evolving through use or specific parts modified or adjusted through specific Church legislation (such as the addition of St. Joseph' name to the Canon or the restoration of Holy Week rites in the 1950's, or the earlier use of Aramaic or Greek before Latin).

Never, however, at least as far as I have ever read, has the Church (prior to Vatican II) ever seen fit to set up a committee (the "Consilium") and rewrite the whole Mass (even if it does use parts which are substantially the same as the old). This is why many don't use the word "traditional" when they refer to the Novus Ordo of Pope Paul VI. Even Pope Benedict has referred to it as something that was fabricated or created rather than simply a modification of what had been received.

I just wanted you to understand where many of us are "coming from" when we use the word "traditional" when referring to the 1962 Missal. 'Kind of like continuing to use a very old house while making only the necessary modifications necessary to make it livable in the present rather than replacing it completely with a new building which has salvaged architectural elements incorporated in it which came from old houses which have been razed.

Both are houses and both may have elements which look the same but one has actually been in continuous use for a very long time, substantially still the same building with little changes over a very long time.

Amos said...

Temp - I was born in Thunderbolt, GA, and baptized at Nativity Church, now Sts. Peter and Paul. Thunderbolt to Savannah is 4.5 miles, not 15.

Joseph Johnson said...

I have been to the EF Masses both in Savannah and in Macon (in Macon, twice at the Tuesday afternoon Mass, while in training near there, and once to the Sunday Mass with Jody Peterman).

The closest regular EF to where I live (near Waycross) is the Savannah Mass, to which I have taken my wife and our 11 and 13 year old daughters several times. This involves making it a day trip to Savannah whenever we do go. Savannah Dentist Felix Maher has been a faithful proponent of the EF Mass in Savannah.

In 2008, we had a weekday EF twice in Waycross, several months apart. The first time, we had 117 in attendance, mostly from Waycross but some from Valdosta (including Jody Peterman and Robert Kumpel), Savannah and Brunswick. The second time we had less in attendance because it was not as widely publicized and about 40 or so people showed up.

Because Waycross is in the middle of the Brunswick/Valdosta Deanery, I have long maintained that we are the logical central location for the EF in this sparse and rural part of the Diocese. I would predict regular attendance at EF Masses in Waycross (if offered) would probably be between 30-50 locals but it could be more if it was widely known throughout the Deanery. For a smaller parish in an isolated, off the Interstate rural town, I think we made a very respectable showing of interest for the EF in 2008 and, from what I can tell, the interest is still there.

Templar said...

Amos, my apologies for the error.

Joseph, I know fairly well of the now YEARS long struggle to get the EF in South Georgia. I pray for you guys every day in my Rosary Intentions. Another group of faithful Catholics wandering in a desert and given a cup of water one day by the Diocese, and then told to be happy we let you have it at all.

Now be good little NO Catholics and return to St. Bozos for your clown Mass. Oh, and don't forget to give to the Bishop's Appeal.

Anonymous said...

The OF is not the result of a "complete re-write" of the liturgy. This assertion assumes, wrongly, that the Tridentine Form is the first or only form of the mass that ever existed. It also assumes, wrongly, that the Tridentine form was not, itself, the result of development and evolution through the centuries.

Too often I find that those who refer to the EF as the "traditional" mass do so as an attempt diminish the equally "traditional" OF.

Summorum Pointificum could not say there are two forms of the mass in the Roman Rite were both forms not equally traditional, not in the historical sense of "tradition," but in the theological sense.

This "two forms in one rite" assertion, by the way, is completely outside the "hermeneutic of continuity" since there has never been a time when there were two forms of the mass in the Roman Rite.

A re-check of Google Maps indicates that from Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Thunderbolt to the Cathedral in Savannah is a journey of 4.0 miles. Their estimation is a travel time of 11 minutes.

Gene said...

Ignotus Final Exam (blue books up front):

1. Please elaborate on the difference between "historically traditional" and "theologically traditional" and explain how the two overlap or intersect.
2. When it is said that the OF is equally as "traditional" as the EF, does that mean in the "historically" traditional sense or the "theologically" traditional sense? Both? Neither?
3. Since "there has never been a time when there were two forms of the Mass in the Roman rite" and there are now, how does this relate to the "hermeneutic of continuity?" If you are arguing that both the EF and the OF are the same form, please define the following terms: 1. same, and 2. form.
4. What is the first form of the Mass that "ever existed?" You receive extra credit for archeological expeditions to Rome and Jerusalem. Government grants may be applied for. There is a time limit on this question of one thousand years. Get busy. You may use Google maps for directions to Rome and Jerusalem. If this is a penitential pilgrimage on foot (and swimming) a GPS would be helpful. Take sunscreen.

Carol H. said...

Anonymous, there are currently at least three forms of the Latin Rite, the OF, the EF, and the Anglian Usage form. The Anglican Usage is the catholicised anglican ceremony of the Mass for the anglican congregations that by the Holy Spirit have come to accept the Pope as the Vicar of Christ. It is not a new rite, but falls under the Latin Rite that it was originally modeled after

Anonymous said...

Carol - the Anglican Use form is not a form of the Roman Rite. It stands as its own entity.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 10:27,
If you read closely what I wrote, I was very careful to mention that what we now call the EF Mass had, in fact, changed or evolved over time. I even gave some more recent examples of legislation changing certain things in that Mass (like adding St. Joseph to the Canon). That was one of the main points of the post, which ended with the "old house with modifications" analogy.

I don't generally speak of the EF Mass as the "Tridentine" Mass because that is the specific form codified by the Council of Trent in 1565. The 1962 or EF Mass is substantially, or organically, the same Mass as the Tridentine but even it had "evolved" or had small changes made to it between 1565 and 1962. Likewise, as the Pope has recognized, the 1565 "Tridentine" Mass and the 1962 Mass are subtantially the same historical Roman Rite Mass that can trace its beginnings back to about the fourth century in and around Rome. This is why some, such as Cardinal Castrillon (the former head of the Ecclesia Dei Commission), choose to call this form of the Mass the "Gregorian Mass" rather than the "Tridentine Mass" because it is much older than the Council of Trent. Detractors of this form of the Mass usually don't like to recognize this and they will call it "Tridentine" to create the impression that it only goes back to 1565 and is therefore less significant in the liturgical history of the Roman Rite.

You will also recall that I recognized that the OF Mass is based on Sacred Tradition, which is part of the deposit of our Faith. Sacred Tradition and mere historical tradition are two entirely different things as you very well know. Both the EF and OF Masses are valid forms of the Mass based on Sacred Tradition, our Faith. But, as between the two, only the EF Mass is the Mass with a very long historical tradition of continuous use. Sacred Tradition is far more important, obviously, but historical tradition should not be lightly discarded. Even the OF carried over certain historical traditions, such as vestments and other furnishings used at Mass. Historical traditions, while not the essence of the Faith, can still aid us in strengthening our Faith.

As far as the pre-fourth century Roman Rite (or its generic antecedent(s))of the early Church era idealized by many of the liturgical reformers, all I can say is this: I've never read of any decision by leaders in the "early Church" to specifically reorder the early Church rite to create the beginnings of the Roman Rite. No, the Roman Rite, though a Sacred rite of Mass, is a product of historical evolution with some changes being intentional, by legislation, and some being merely practical changes by long usage which may have been codified later.

At any rate, what I meant by "complete re-write" was that, previous to the Consilium, the Mass had always changed in the gradual and incremental ways that I described above. It was a received historical form of the Roman Rite, "tweaked" over the centuries but never replaced outright by a new order of Mass. So, yes, I was talking about historical "tradition" in the sense that the Mass had always been a slowly evolving form which was the product of many centuries. This, as opposed to starting with a clean slate and drawing certain parts word for word from this historical form but also writing some all new parts and drawing on some manuscripts (from the very early Church era) and adapting or paraphrasing these to be incorporated in this new form (this "New Order"of the Mass). Just look at the difference in the Offertory prayers of the EF and OF Mass. It is easy to see that while the essentials of the underlying theology are the same, the emphasis is deliberately different. By the way, it can still be fairly characterized as a "re-write" even if it uses some of the older wording.

Joseph Johnson said...

I am truly very grateful for you prayers for the EF to become more available in South Georgia.

I will say this, though, our pastor really puts his heart into trying to make our NO Masses as reverent and as correctly done as possible.

Yes, we still have to contend with "Glory and Praise" songs resurfacing here and there as well as occasional applause when PRE certificates, etc. are presented. The "Glory and Praise" music can be made more rare by simply getting different musical materials, such as the "Vatican II Hymnal" or the new "Adoremus Hymnal" to replace the OCP Missalettes. Applause at Mass is a cultural problem having its beginnings in the Elvis-era inspired "silly season." This may take years of catechesis and generational change to put us back to the point where it would, once again, be unthinkable to applaud at Mass.

Gene said...

Anon at 8:04: You are not supposed to help Ignotus on his exam. Shame...but informative post. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Historically traditional might be defined as "customary."

Theologically traditional might be defined as "Divinely revealed."

The OF is theologically traditional, as is the EF. Each contains elements that are "customary." Elements that are customary can be changed. Elements that are theologically traditional cannot be changed.

The OF and the EF are not the same form. The existence of "two forms" in the one Roman Rite is, I believe, historically unique and, therefore, something discontinuous with past tradition.

The first form of the mass is the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. His LDR is the "New Covenant" incarnate. It is this mystery that we celebrate at mass, whether in the OF or the EF.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 10:17,

Maybe the unique historical situation involving the co-existence of two forms of the one Roman Rite is the consequence of the unique historical situation of having put aside the slowly evolved Roman Rite of history (now called the EF) and replacing it with a new form of the Roman Rite (the New Order of Mass of 1970, now called the OF).

Rather than acting in continuity with the past and simply modifying the existing Roman Rite (as was done in the 1965 Missal) the Church broke, or ruptured, with its past and devised a new form of the Roman Rite (which it certainly has the authority to do--it's just different from what had happened up to that point in history). The results of this unique break with the past have, at best, been mixed for the Church and the Holy Father has seen fit to make it easier for the older form of the Roman Rite to be celebrated because, somewhere along the way, we lost an understanding of and a sense of identity with our Faith that needs to be recovered and passed on.

Gene said...

Ignotus (10:17), That is a pretty good response. I do not like the term "customary," rather I prefer "normative." Customary implies that one may take it or leave it; whereas, normative implies a directive "tradition" with some defining limits. If you insist upon "custom," then I would argue that, at some point (after long deliberate and studied usage), customary becomes normative. That is historical tradition in my opinion.

I agree that "theologically traditional" is Divinely revealed, however, there is that theology that is conducted within the parameters of the Divinely revealed that is argued and which has varying nuances of truth and accuracy. I think of some of the discussions of the nature of the Eucharist, i.e. impanation, transignification, etc. that took place among those who fully accepted the Real Presence but who disagreed as to the "mechanics" (a terrible choice of words)of it.

"The first form of the Mass is the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ." Well said. You trumped me on that one. Next round tomorrow. LOL!