Friday, March 10, 2017
I DISAGREE THAT THE ORDINARY FORM OF THE MASS CAN'T BE AS REVERENT AS THE EXTRAORDINARY FORM EVEN IF LATIN IS NOT USED
WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO READ WILL NOT BE SUCCESSFUL UNLESS IT COMES FROM ON HIGH, FROM THE POPE AND BISHOPS OF THE HOLY ROMAN, LATIN RITE OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH. IF THIS IS NOT THE DIRECTION OF LEADERSHIP ANY CONGREGATION AND PRIEST DOING SO FROM BELOW WILL BE SEEN AS IDIOSYNCRATIC AND THE WORK OF THE PRIEST PROMOTING IT WITH BE UNDONE BY A SUBSEQUENT PASTOR WHO DOES NOT ACCEPT THE RE-SACRALIZATION OF THE MASS IN THE ORDINARY FORM. WE CANNOT REFORM THE ORDINARY FORM IF SUBSEQUENT BISHOPS AND PRIESTS PREFER STATUS QUO AND RETURN TO IT THUS CREATING MORE ANGST AND DIVISION IN PARISHES.
What does an Ordinary Form Mass, even all in English, which recaptures the Sacrifice and reverence of the Extraordinary Form?
1. It begins with the reform of the OF Roman Missal to include what the Ordinariate's Divine Worship the Missal already accomplishes except ours would not have the Anglican patrimony or archaic English, but would allow for the use of EF characteristics gutted from the current OF Roman Missal.
2. The Mass is celebrated ad orientem with the chanting in English of the Propers, Introit, Offertory and Communion Antiphons and as it is done in the EF Roman Missal. This allows for plain chant in English or more complicated forms of English chant but certainly does not exclude our patrimony in Latin!
3. The entire Mass is celebrated ad orientem as in the EF Missal except for the Liturgy of the Word which remains as is in terms of style but without the useless repetition of the refrain of a "responsorial psalm, but the use of the Gradual and Tract.
4. The return of the use of the altar railing with communion received kneeling and on the tongue and the only option for the Precious Blood for the laity by way of intinction, not the common chalice.
5. The rule of silence in the Church maintained scrupulously before, during and after Mass.
6. Silence occurring in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in the context of actual liturgical prayer rather than imposed on the liturgy after certain elements of the Mass. This means a Silent Canon and other points of silence during actual liturgical prayer that is common in the EF Roman Missal.
Any other suggestions that embraces the Ordinary Form of the Mass and does not suggest it be suppressed in favor of the 1962 Roman Missal?????
Posted by Fr. Allan J. McDonald at Friday, March 10, 2017
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It really all depends upon the Priest...your OF Masses were about as well done as they could be and quite reverent and dignified. I left Mass feeling like I had been in Christ's Presence. I have only seen one or two other Priests celebrate in the same manner. So, it depends upon the Priest...WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE OF! It should not. The EF is so structured that the Priest matters very little, and it is difficult to mess it up. With the OF and the Vat II "spirit," it is more like attending a Baptist or Pentecostal service...you never know what the Preacher is going to do...take off his coat and throw it down and stomp on it (I have seen this), jump over pews, fall on his knees crying, bring in Bobbie Jo and Mary Sue to sing, "Ain't No Flies on Jesus," through their noses as loud as possible or, as I once witnessed, begin making chewing and spitting noises into the mike and ask, "Ya'll know what I'm doing? I'm 'a' eatin' the grapes of Esther and spittin' the seeds in the Devil's face!" Anything goes in the OF. But, if you like surprises, it's great.
Paraphrasing Mosebach slightly:
The weakness of the OF is revealed by the observation that, with sufficient effort, it can be celebrated reverently.
The strength of the EF is revealed by the observation that, with sufficient effort, it can be celebrated irreverently.
Why not merely conduct the EF in English?
RCG, that would be a no brainer. However, we cannot dismiss Sacrosanctum Concilium altogether as much as some would like to do so. It did call for the expansion of the lectionary. I do not think this should in any way be a flash point for those who prefer the simpler EF lectionary which I think, though, is dismal for daily Mass. I much prefer the richness of our daily Mass lectionary compared to the EF which only repeats the Sunday Mass all week long unless there are proper readings such as during Lent and Advent and the Easter Season.
The call for noble simplicity should not be rejected outright, especially as it concerns the Solemn High EF Mass. The use of a deacon apart form the Solemn High Mass needs revision too and the OF is on target there but with the unfortunate suppression of the sub deacon.
Useless duplication of the Communion Rite, once for the priest and the other for the laity is a good reform in the OF Mass, although I the three prong: Lord, I am not worthy... would be a welcome restoration as well as the placeat!
Henry, what makes the OF more difficult to celebrate reverently is the lack of rubrical details in the EF, the turning of the priest to face the people in all prayer, with the ability to ad lib because of the English---one can't very well ad lib in Latin, but one can read it too fast to say the least and mumble it--both deformations in the EF by some priests. An EF Mass that ends in 15 minutes of less has to be considered an easy to abuse it!
While I am not opposed to lay ministers, lay clothing for their ministries is a mistake given the fads of fashions, immodesty in dress and casualness in dress that shows forth a casual attitude toward God and the Sacred.
Henry: that is a wonderful aphorism!
You will never get the sacredness of the EF unless the OF uses one of the tres linguae sacrae for at least the Canon which is the priest's sacrificial prayer to God on behalf of all the faithful present. For 1400 hundred years in the West, that language, made sacred by its use on the Cross, as Aquinas pointed out, has been liturgical Latin, a special sacred language that has not been understood well, if at all, for that same time by ordinary people, since it is addressed solely to God, but which nevertheless has produced counteless saints and followers of Christ everywhere. Because of the particular nature of the Roman Canon, once you lose the Latin, you lose its important connection with the Sacrifice on the Cross.
"An EF Mass that ends in 15 minutes of less has to be considered an easy to abuse it!"
Au contraire, I think it would be very difficult to celebrate an EF Mass in 15 minutes or less. In my pre-Vatican II convert days, I had the opportunity to attend daily as well as Sunday TLMs. Daily low Mass typically was about 25 minutes; Sunday low Mass with sermon, longer communion, etc more like 45 minutes. Of course the typical high Mass (then and now) lasts over an hour (with the none of the fluff and padding characteristic of OF Sunday liturgy).
The only Masses much less than 25 minutes in length I've ever attended were all Novus Ordo. One hears allegations of EF Masses with slurred or mumbled Latin, but in about 60 years of attending TLMs whenever I could, I don't recall witnessing one myself.
Every TLM priest I've ever known personally has appeared to be serious and reverent in celebrating it, but it be hard to count the number of Novus Ordo priests I've seen who did not appear to be.
The lack of detailed OF rubrics is a factor, but I suspect that the much larger factor is the fact that OF training celebration does now infuse a priest with the depth of sacrificial theology and spirituality that the TLM provides him.
That is a tired old canard, slurred or mumbled Latin, and the Mass being hurried. I was an Altarboy then and never encountered that. I think one of the reasons the weekday Low Mass didn't take a great deal of time was the lack of a homily.
Your last observation is spot on.
A Solemn OF High Mass in Latin, celebrated ad orientem with the music proper to it, is close enough to the classic Roman Rite as almost to pass as a Use of it. Even when a lot of it is sung in the vernacular, it can still be authentically Catholic, uplifting and spiritually edifying.
However, the achievement of this accomplished by simply applying one option of the NO among many, and it is a little-used option. When the Mass is celebrated according to the 1962 Missal what happens is determined by the rubrics and there are essentially no options.
That is the main difference. Incidentally, it would have been quite feasible to have added weekday readings (some older rites had them) without disrupting the Sunday cycle and the imposition of a cumbersome 3-year/2-year lectionary was not necessary.
The EF Missal does not allow chanting of the Propers in the vernacular.
Henry is right; the 12-minute Low Mass is an urban myth. Priests were familiar with the Vulgate and could read the epistle and gospel at a brisk conversational speed, but I never came across a priest who talked over the server's responses or omitted rubrical gestures. The pace of the Offertory and Ablutions is dependent on the server and I do not recall running around. The pre-Communion Confiteor did not begin until after the priest's Communion and the Leonine Prayers were mandatory.
You could use EP 2 and get through the NO in 12 minutes, which is why it padded out even on weekdays. 'A homily is recommended ...' This alone would put me off ever attending a weekday EF Mass.
Fr. During the early phase of relearning the EF I would think the repetition would helpful to everyone. After the parish is used to it you can look for the allowed feasts then add in special intentions. In the Southern US we have a need for prayers to protect against various pests and weather as well as for crops, livestock, families, specific vocations, people in harms way that you should not find a daily EF all *that* repetative.
Sorry, I meant a weekday OF Mass!
Gene and Henry are spot on! I was fortunate enough when I didn't have a weekly EF Mass available to attend St Mary in Nashville with Fr. Baker. It was as close to the EF as the OF could get. By far the most reverent Mass I had been to outside of the EF. No exchange of the sign of piece between laity is one I think you missed in your list.
The OF of the Mass isn't so bad on weekdays if it is offered according to the rubrics, but most often there are the bidding prayers called out by lay people etc. and that is very intrusive. Also, unless Eucharistic Prayer 1 is said then there is very little time between the homily and the consecration and, as the priest's jokes seem to be mandatory in the OF homily, there is very little time to get over laughing at the joke before we are into the consecration.
RCG say "why not merely conduct the EF in English". I don't know if RCG is aware or not but that is what was supposed to happen initially and things slowly moved on over the years until, yes, Mass is now "conducted" as opposed to the offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass which it used to be when Mass was offered solely in the EF.
I never hear any complaints about Mass offered in the Extraordinary Form. Everyone is very content. It seems to be only those who want a reverent OF Mass who are discontent.
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