Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Don't get me wrong, because of course I am always right, but I think bloggers have a right to post on their blogs what they believe their blog should be about. I also agree that bloggers should censor or eliminate comments. They have that right.

But when someone on a supposed academic blog concerning the liturgy makes blanket statements which are intended to provoke comments, since comments are allowed and encouraged, but only from like minded individuals of a certain class, other bloggers can take up a voice of protest or even set the record straight, especially if what is spewed forth is done so in an "infallible, not to be questioned way."

The worst thing about post Vatican II "spirit of Vatican II" ideologists is that they, professing to be progressive, open minded, open to dialogue and discussion, promote their post Vatican II, spirit of Vatican II ideologies in the most pre-Vatican II authoritarian way.

And thus I read this comment by a blogger of an infamous liturgy blog that while progressive is very narrow minded, which is not an oxymoron (MY COMMENTS IN RED):

Allow me to clarify the editorial policy of this blog. There really is no controversy for those who understand and accept Vatican II. It’s become increasingly clear to me that those who want to stir up all this controversy about Bugnini either really don’t accept Vatican II, or they fundamentally misunderstand Vatican II, or both.

 The Council laid out all the principles for reform – principles which clearly call for a paradigm shift that has lots of implications for structural reforms. (This is true, but with some 50 years having  passed and this shift in paradigm and so-called implications shoved down the throats of innocent laity after Vatican II, it is permissible, even morally ethical to call into question those things that many, many clergy and laity believe have deformed not only the Liturgy but the Church. There is nothing infallible about a paradigm shift and certainly about subsequent implications shoved down people's throats by academics with an ideological agenda.) The reform went beyond what Vatican II said because Vatican II didn’t say that much about the particularities of the reform, but left that to the postconciliar commission. It’s the fundamental principles that are key.

For those who understand and accept Vatican II, of course there can always be calm discussion about whether this point or that could have been handled differently (which of course can be the case) or should have been. But this isn’t controversy – note the difference. (This is trying to debate what the meaning of the word "is" is, as the Clinton's did. There has been controversy galore since Vatican II in a non stop way that has diminished the mission of the Church and her members, most of it caused by those who sought to put their version of the "implications" i.e. spirit of Vatican II forward and with great success for themselves but not for the Church--that is the meaning of controversial.)

This website has a clear mission – to promote the liturgical reforms of the Second Vatican Council. This means that our editorial policy presumes that there really isn’t any serious controversy around Bugnini. Our readers really don’t want to read about those who think it is a controversy – since our readers are people who tend to understand and accept the liturgical reforms. (In all other areas, this blogger would applaud the "inclusive" ideology so prevalent in so-called open minded progressives in the Church but with one big caveat which he has stated loudly and clearly. Don't rock the progressive boat, because the captain is extremely insecure and it could cause those who agree with him to reconsider their agreement or worse yet, stop reading his blog.)

Also, note that you’re mistaken about Redemptionis Sacramentum – it is not more authoritative than the reformed liturgy carried out under Bugnini. It is a minor document. The reformed liturgy is not – it’s is the papally approved official liturgy of the Catholic Church. (In terms of authority, I would say that an ecumenical council has great authority but if it isn't dogmatic, it can be adjusted subsequently, especially if the non-infallible ideologies or theologies are proven to be the cause of the Church running off the rails. Yes, the reformed liturgy is of the highest, or almost highest form of papal authority. So is Pope Benedict's allowance of the now so-called "two forms of the one Roman Rite: the Extraordinary Form (out of the usual) and the Ordinary Form (the normal form of the Mass). 
Progressives love to sing the praises of Pope Paul's liturgical authority, which His Holiness possessed by virtue of his office, but decry Pope Benedict's authority--how do you spell HYPOCRISY?)

And finally this last comment from the same insecure blogger who can't stand being challenged by his readers who post cogent comments which are anything but disrespectful:

I’ve left these last two comments from you two, but then that will be enough. Pray Tell readers have said ‘loud and clear’ that they like Pray Tell as a place to support the reformed liturgy and celebrate it better. They’ve heard all the arguments about ‘reform of the reform’ and what Vatican II supposedly really intended and aren’t interested in re-hashing it over and over. There are other places for that – Pray Tell isn’t the place and it isn’t our mission.

There was an article in our Worship magazine by an expert on the low canonical status of RS – you can search it out there if you’re interested. Or any basic textbook on liturgical law by a reputable author would clarify this matter.

Thank you for your understanding.

In fact the two who offer the best rebuttal to an insecure blogger are the most interesting and intelligent comments on the whole thread, but the blogger's insecurity shuts the discussion down. That's his right, but also our right to call it out for what it is.  



Anonymous said...

Shame on you. You've done it to me again. Shame on me. I've never succumbed to the temptation to visit Pray Tell without regretting having wasted my time so foolishly.

TJM said...

Father you're describing a typical, modern "liberal." If you don't agree with them, they shut down debate instead of engaging you. This phenomenon is widespread on college campuses today. Pathetic. I lost interest in "Pray Sniff" ages ago.

Victor said...

I long ago abandoned PT. As TJM said, there is no debate among certain people who hold influence. Perhaps that is why they hold influence, using tyrannical mindsets, very common in the political sphere.
Yet only a fool would claim that "There really is no controversy for those who understand and accept Vatican II." That would only hold if the understanding and acceptance were contingent on certain exceptional opinion. I would, rather, follow the opinion of a pope, such as Benedict XVI who sees problems with both the Council documents and their interpretation, than someone who is still fuming for being fired from a prestigious position at ICEL for his radical tyrannical mindsets of views. Indeed, as Cardinal Sarah pointed out, we still have quite some way to go to implement the liturgical reforms as the Council Fathers wished them since they were hijacked by tyrannical mindsets such as that of Bugnini at the time. I could not believe how Paul VI was conned into accepting the reforms in all this if one reads Fr. Bouyer's journal.

Anonymous said...

Praytell makes me weep. I hope that at the very least they have some awareness of the hypocrisy/irony of their position. At the end of the day, he and his ilk come off as saying that "we want to be able to critique, mock, disparage and demean people who disagree with us without having to respond to those same people," all the while padding themselves on the back about how much more tolerant, charitable and intellectual they are than the straw men that they set up. It would be very funny if it weren't so sad. After all, Father Ruff has said that:
Father Ruff himself has said that

"Unless you can predict the future, you don’t know what the Catholic Church will believe to be God’s will, and what the Catholic Church will teach 100 years from now about women’s ordination or same-sex unions or all the other issues. '

It's so surreal to read that statement and then see him carry on with his claims about Vatican II and its "paradigm shift."

I used to think that there was good will on the side of Father Ruff but now I don't believe it. He, for example, made a recent post (June 2) arguing how Pope Francis wants to move beyond conflict and condemnation when it comes to the ordination of woman to the priesthood but conveniently neglects to mention how Francis signed the excommunication of a priest who advocated ordination of women, how he[Francis] has stated in Evangelii Gaudium that it is a topic not open to discussion, and has reiterated that John Paul II's judgment is definitive in two interviews. I don't think it's a coincidence that Ruff forgot those points in his post. I don't want to slander him but I think that he likes to play hard and fast with the truth when it comes to promoting his view of things and I no longer think that this is innocent.

anon-1 said...

Father, for situations such as you present here, I have a stock (cliche) recommendation: Do not try to teach pigs music (especially liturgical music) because it will only waste your time and annoy the pigs. And if the pigs are bloggers...they will act like pigs do, no surprise in that.

Rood Screen said...

Comparing his attitude to our racist past is interesting. Enforced segregation of races was always really about preventing the gifts and dreams of a group of Americans from bearing fruit. I have nothing but respect for those advocating the various liturgical novelties of the past fifty years, but it is painfully clear that they have no respect for the gifts and dreams of those of us who thrive in the fullness of the Roman liturgical tradition. In parish after parish, diocese after diocese, pastoral leaders have made it clear that no steps will be taken to accommodate our legitimate liturgical gifts or dreams, lest we bear fruit.

John Nolan said...

Redemptionis Sacramentum (2004) is not in opposition to the 'reformed liturgy carried out under Bugnini', so which has the greater authority is irrelevant. It upholds the 'reformed liturgy' against abuses and misunderstandings which arose later; it introduces no changes; its authority (it's an instruction from the CDWDS) is not derived from itself but rests on the documents which it references.

The idea that a pope, especially acting on the mandate of an ecumenical council, can do as he pleases with the liturgy (as Paul VI did) is, according to Ratzinger, an aberration. As Benedict XVI he attempted no such thing. If this is so, Paul was acting ultra vires and his new Mass, while valid, may be illicit. This, along with the authority of the Council itself (which was hi-jacked early on and subsequently manipulated by a 'progressive' - if not Modernist - faction) will need to be seriously considered in the next hundred years.

TJM said...

John XXIII, the smiling conservative, would have crushed Bugnini like the little bug that he was, had he lived. The left-wing loons over at Pray Sniff conveniently forget Veterum Sapientia.

John Reb said...

Glad to see the secular national flags are receding. I guess you found the military folk not so menacing...

Tony V said...

Alas, PT has closed comments on that I must inflict upon you the comment which would have been swiftly deleted over there:

‘This website [PT} has a clear mission – to promote the liturgical reforms of the Second Vatican Council.’
Fair enough, and when you run a blog you can post whatever you like. But when one runs a publicly accessible blog that purports to post accepts reader comments, it’s extremely disingenuous to censor viewpoints that politely disagree with your own and express coherent reasons for doing so. This not only deprives readers of a broader perspective, it also deprives the blog-owner himself of the chance to expand and, dare I say it, even change his own ways of thinking. It also balkanises the on-line liturgical community, by removing a place where people can come to respect each other even when they continue to have differences. The honourable alternative, of course, would be to eliminate comments, like Rorate Coeli and Crux have done.

‘For those who understand and accept Vatican II…’
No doubt it wasn’t intended, but this phrase does come off as condescending. It should be obvious by now that there are many ways we can ‘understand’ Vatican II, and some of those ways may not be to any one individual’s liking. But sharing these understandings with each other might actually broaden our ways of thinking.
As for accepting the council, it’s clear that there are people (some of whom, like it or not, are readers of this public blog) who very much accept Vatican II. They may or may not like what’s been done to the liturgy; they may feel that imposing changes devised by ‘experts’ in a top-down manner was not wise. And they’re puzzled when they criticise issues that are not dogmas or doctrines of the faith.

For the record, I’m not one of them, mainly because I am too oecumenically-minded. I freely admit that I don’t ‘accept’ Vatican II as anything more than a local council, and I think it made mistakes. I also don’t believe the pope—any pope—has the authority to make sweeping changes to the liturgy, and I think Paul VI’s presumption in doing was grounded firmly in the ‘Spirit of Vatican I’, that ultramontane view that the pope can do anything he wants. (Paul tried, and failed, to get into the council documents the statement that the pope is ‘only answerable to God’—source: Granfield, Limits of the Papacy). Both Vatican councils are an immense stumbling block to Christian unity--also, we lost a lot of good people after each of them.

One of the VII pronouncements I find most troubling is this: ‘The laity should, as all Christians, promptly accept in Christian obedience decisions of their spiritual shepherds’ (LG37). This, in a nutshell, defines clericalism. And it explains why some clerics are so adamant in their attempts to stifle honest critique of the council.

Don't get me wrong--I've got nothing against obedience. In particular, I firmly believe that bishops, including the bishop of Rome, should be obedient to Scripture and Tradition. But V2 turns obedience on its head.

John Nolan said...

It is said that by inserting 'sed et beati Joseph, ejusdem Virginis Sponsi' into the Roman Canon, John XXIII was signalling that it was all right to change the Mass Ordinary. It is said that Pius X, who, like John, was christened Giuseppe, toyed with the idea but decided against it, remarking 'I'm only the pope!'

However, extra words have long been added to this prayer (the Communicantes) at Christmas, Epiphany, Easter, Ascension and Pentecost, so John's addition of seven words isn't altogether revolutionary. And if anyone had suggested omitting anything from the Canon, or changing the words of Consecration, he would have been horrified. He didn't like Bugnini's revised Ordo for Holy Week which Pius XII had mandated in 1955.

A good example of the reformers' preference for novelty over tradition can be seen in the blessing of candles on 2 February in the Novus Ordo. The Roman Rite has five, of not inconsiderable antiquity. Five longish Latin prayers in an ordinary parish context might be considered too much. A genuine reform could be to allow a choice of (say) two, or to recite the prayers in the vernacular. In cathedrals and monastic institutions the full rite would be followed.

However, all five were suppressed and two entirely new ones composed, with the instruction that only one be chosen.

Another example of unwarranted innovation was the suppression of pre-Lent ostensibly to bring the 40-day penitential season into sharper relief and then to change the Collects so that they were no longer penitential in character.

Bugnini was well aware that his handiwork was inherently unstable to the extent that he gave it a lifespan of only 20 years before even more radical changes would be needed. It reminds one of Thomas Cranmer who by 1555 was already moving towards a more Genevan model of Protestantism; the accession of Mary Tudor actually saved the Book of Common Prayer. This is why Bugnini wanted the classic Roman Rite juridically abrogated (he was given the bum's rush on this one). He was galled when Paul VI allowed an indult in 1971 to Cardinal Heenan to allow the old Rite in England and Wales and tried to restrict it to the bastardized 1967 version, again without success.

The fact that the liturgical reform has his grubby paw-prints all over it is sufficient to discredit it in the eyes of anyone who has any knowledge of, or respect for, liturgical tradition.

Unknown said...

'The Council laid out all the principles for reform – principles which clearly call for a paradigm shift that has lots of implications for structural reforms.'

This goes to the very root, heart, and spirit of the difficulty re: the Second Vatican Council and 'acceptance' of its texts, their application, and any possible meaning they may have for 'times' other than their own (as stated in the texts) now long gone. The 'principles for reform' - clearly calling for a paradigm shift (with all the vague implications that may entail) - were pastoral in purpose, meant to meet the supposed needs of the times, none of them were (or are) binding as in in matter of faith. Their teaching authority - and its countersigning Fathers (including Archbishop Lefebvre) did have teaching authority - was of strict and self-appointed limitation .. to lay down pastoral principles (to better express Sacred Tradition) for times that were indeed a-changing (rapidly, posing many challenges and opportunities, and in ways that previous generation had not and could not have foreseen); those limits were not heeded (the Modernist cabals and individuals long before the Council had never intended to heed any limitation, once given their chance), and there we meet the point of the crux with the excruciating passion it imposed upon the Church, even ripping its pastoral leadership apart from top to bottom as if a veil rent by human will (rather than divine influence): that is, can we find and offer any trustworthy, meaningful or authoritative justification for treating that pastoral guidance (now long past its use-by-date, btw) as definitive (or even useful, let alone applicable) in matters of faith, morals, doctrine or practice?

And that is the dilemma still justly posed to and by the Society of Saint Pius X (and other faithful Catholics). If in justice the Church can find reasons to bind souls as a matter of faith to the acts of the Council, or worse to the actions wrought in answer to its 'principles', then of course Her pastors ought to do so, if not, then they should not. Therefore the whole matter rest not on whether we like, accept, implement the texts (or the wayward spirit) of the Council, rather of whether it is just or unjust to apply them as if binding in faith .. and that is before one questions the state of grace, official authority, or reasonableness of those who must make any decisions affecting the issue.

TJM said...

John Nolan,

If you posted at Father Z's you would get his gold star for this remark:

"The fact that the liturgical reform has his grubby paw-prints all over it is sufficient to discredit it in the eyes of anyone who has any knowledge of, or respect for, liturgical tradition."

Unknown said...

If you're at all interested in knowing . . . the Catholic Dogma . . . that we *must believe* to get to Heaven, and which you have *never* seen . . .

I list it on my website > >

> > Abjuration of heresy to enter the Catholic Church >

The Catholic God knows . . . what we think and believe . . .

Catholic writing of Romans 1:21 >
"They ... became vain in their thoughts, and their foolish heart was darkened."

Catholic Faith (pre-fulfillment) writing of Deuteronomy 31:21 >
"For I know their thoughts, and what they are about to do this day."

Catholic Faith (pre-fulfillment) writing of Job 21:27 >
"Surely I know your thoughts, and your unjust judgments against Me."

The group that calls itself "islam" ... is not a religion. Fully proven by the fact that the "koran" says the *opposite* of the Old Testament Prophets > Section 113 of the site.

Fr Martin Fox said...

what I would highlight in Father Anthony's approach, and that of the PrayTell cognoscenti in general, is the tendentiousness of their "defense" of Vatican II. Their account of the post-Vatican II reforms laughably omit any serious acknowledgement of the abuses and misreprentations of Vatican II that came, not from terrible traditionalists, but from their own tribe of put-upon, under-appreciated, enlightened reformers. Father Ruff and his acolytes express shock that traditionalists see Vatican II as a rupture, conveniently overlooking how much the disciples of Bugnini, down to the parish level, pounded that message for years, well into the 90s.

I am all for tradition, myself, but I am not a "traditionalist" (nttiawwt); and in my time in the seminary, under Pope John Paul II, was pushing back (carefully) against this "rupture" celebration of Vatican II. As I saw it, if there were two churches -- old and new-- there is NO church. Well, of course, after Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict won that argument, the we're-the-only-ones-who-love-Vatican-2 crowd starting claiming, oh well, we always thought that way!

This is all part of what I call the progressives' "Operation Memry Hole." Now that the tide has turned in many places, they are embarrassed about their silliness and tolerance for abuses and misreprentations to the faithful for so many years, they are furiously claiming it never really happened, that it's all urban legend, perhaps based on some isolated excesses here and there. Only then can they make us look bad when we highlight all the progressive nonsense that's not in Vatican II. We say it, because for so long, the faithful were lied to, and told, yes, Vatican II says we have to destroy this altar, take out these statues, etc. We are cleaning up the progressives' mess.

No wonder that Father Anthony would wave away Redemptionis Sacramentum as a "minor" document!