Monday, October 31, 2016


The result of 1960's and 70's "spirit of Vatican II" thinking was the following in my first 15 years or so as a Catholic priest, roughly from 1980 to 1995.

1. Many priests indiscrimately offered Holy Communion to non Catholics at funeral and nuptial Masses to specifically include the non-Catholic spouses and family members at either. In fact when I was in Augusta at the Church of the Most Holy Trinity, another parish had a large wedding in my church, which I allowed. I happen to be in the sacristy that faithful Saturday at about the time Holy Communion was to begin, only to hear the priest-celebrant boldly and arrogantly proclaim to the congregation that if you believe in Jesus come and receive Holy Communion. (This priest is now dead, but known for taking illegal liberalities with the liturgy and secular things.)

2. Improvisation of the Mass parts, which continues to this day and even under Pope Benedict will accelerate.

3. Liturgical dance was very much in favor. My first experience of it was Advent 1980 at St. Teresa's in Albany where the now deceased pastor, thoroughly prepared for the. Priesthood prior to Vatican II, loved the concept of liturgical dance, but didn't really understand what it was. Each year he would invite a dance group of little girls from a local dance studio to preform during Mass. What a fiasco!

At a non-liturgical prelude to a Marian Procession of Images of our Blessed Mother at St. Peter's Square, to fill time before it occurred and the pope came to pray the Holy Rosary with us, there was a sort of entertainment with a mix of interviews, music and dance. I had no problem with this because the place was packed for hours and it helped to pass the time and was entertaining in a very wholesome way.

The talent was great and to a couple of Marian hymns expert dancers danced to what was being sung. It doesn't do anything for me personally, but outside of Mass or any of the Sacraments of the Church it is no big deal to me, just don't drag it into the celebration of the official liturgies of the Church.

Pope Benedict an expert on the liturgy with a vision for it that included the older Mass but also the 1970's current Missal celebrated well, did not include the three things I list above.

We are going backwards, I feel, to the 1970's under the current thinking of many who are now in power in the hierarchy.  Will we ever go back to the future? Stay tuned for the sequel! I bet we will, but am I clairvoyant?


Anonymous said...

Has any one heard Sanctus at a NO Mass sung to the tune of "She'll be coming around the mountain when she comes"? This happened yesterday at a prominent Church in Roanoke, VA. This is the Blue Ridge area but that hardly justifies the musical aberration, does it?

Rood Screen said...

Pope Francis wants a Church without established doctrines or liturgical forms, but with a Pentecostal sentimentality and a secular morality. It will be interesting to see what we actually end up with.

TJM said...

To borrow a practice from the liberal playbook, if I were a traditional young priest I would simply stay the course and ignore the liberal members of the hierarchy whose failed policies and practices have devastated the Catholic Church. They will be gone soon enough.

Anonymous said...

"It doesn't do anything for me personally..." As if it's all about you and what you prefer. It's not.

"Pope Francis wants a Church without established doctrines or liturgical forms..." This is a slander against the person of the Pope. It is shameful that Catholics say such things and that Catholic priests post such things on their blogs.

Mark Thomas said...

Here is Pope Francis' address offered during today's ecumenical gathering at the Lutheran Cathedral:


Mark Thomas

Charles G said...

I have to hope that all the good done by Popes JPII and Benedict XVI will not have been in vain, and that all the damage done by this Pope will not be irreversible.

Rood Screen said...


I am merely responding to what the pope himself says and does. It's not slander if it's true.

Anonymous said...

Dialogue - That's exactly the point. It is not true. It is slander that comes from a dark, dark heart.

Without much, if any, hope for a response, can you give ANY evidence of anything the Holy Father has said or written that would back up your spurious claim?

Rood Screen said...


"Before the problems of the Church it is not useful to search for solutions in conservatism or fundamentalism, in the restoration of obsolete conduct and forms that no longer have the capacity of being significant culturally. The reform of the church then--and the church is semper reformanda--does not end in the umpteenth plan to change structures. It means instead grafting yourself to and rooting yourself in Christ, leaving yourself to be guided by the Spirit, so that all will be possible with genius and creativity. As pastors may you not be preachers of complex doctrine, but pronouncers of Christ, dead and resurrected for us. Aim for the essential, the kerygma."

And that's just some brief comments he made last Tuesday.

Victor said...

"We are going backwards, I feel, to the 1970's under the current thinking of many who are now in power in the hierarchy."
I am sorry to spoil your theory, father, but we never left the 1970's. The Church is still under the firm control of the World War II generation and their disciples, those that brought about the lack of reverence towards God in the liturgy during those years and continue to do so. You do not have to look further as to why the youth today are alienated from the Church (like everybody else) in the Western countries; her liturgy means nothing to them, just like the 1970's mean nothing to them.

Anonymous said...

Dialogue - There is nothing in that passage that states or even indicates that "Pope Francis wants a Church without established doctrines or liturgical forms."

Your accusation is slander and baseless.

Rood Screen said...


I read what he says with all due sincerity. If you find some other meaning in his words, then I commend you on your ability to do so. However, it is unfair of you to accuse me of slander, since I have no intention of misunderstanding the pope. On the contrary, I go to great lengths to try to understand him. It is also unfair of you to accuse me of making baseless comments, since I've quoted for you the statements upon which I base my comments.

Anonymous said...

Dialogue - Where does the quote you post say anything about abolishing doctrine of liturgical forms?

Are we reading the same passage?

Rood Screen said...


Even the most fundamental doctrines of the Church are complex (c.f. the first seven ecumenical councils), and, since the only liturgical forms for which there is serious advocacy are those currently in use, it can only be these which he deems "obsolete". He's had the same message for at least a decade, so it's easy to understand what he means. If, however, he has some secret agenda too hard to comprehend through his words alone, then it hardly seems reasonable to fault me for misunderstanding.

Anonymous said...

Dialogue - You have not indicated where Pope Francis calls for the abolition of doctrine and liturgical forms.

Without that, your accusations remain slanderous.