Monday, May 15, 2017


While less than 1% of a vocal clique in the Church wants the Ordinary Form of the Mass completely abrogated  and the pre-1955 liturgies restored, we all know in the deepest part of our souls that this is not going to happen, ever........

I do not know of any FSSP or SSPX parish that is larger than 1,000 households, in fact I don't know of any that large. Atlanta's St. Francis DeSales FSSP parish is less than that in a metro area that has seen the Catholic Church become the second largest Church second only to Southern Baptists (eclipsing the United Methodist is a major miracle in Georgia!) So you would think that if so many Catholics were clamering for the good old Liturgical days St. Francis would be a mega parish  by now equaling the size of the Mega Catholic parish in Charlotte with 30,000 members (and it is as spirit of Vatican II and cult of the priest's personality as you can get!)

So, we are to keep the 2002 Roman Missal or a facsimile of it until the Second Coming. If the pope in His Holiness' charity were to allow for a slight revision of rubrics of the 2002 Latin Rite Missal and mandate only one of these throughout the Latin Rite, which would you choose?

Ad Orientem?


Kneeling to receive Holy Communion?

While I would prefer both, if I could not have both, I would vote for kneeling for Holy Communion becasue in my most humble opinion the manner in which Holy Communion today is distributed, intrinsically leads to external and internal loss of the sense of the sacred and holy reverence as well as profanation of the Holy Eucharist and outright sacrilege. 


James said...

Difficult one. If I had to pick between the two, I'd go for more posts on gators and snakes, and fewer on liturgy.

rcg said...

We don't have to pick.

ByzRus said...

Without question, ad orientem. This posture completely changes the experience for all. During Holy Week, I attended an ad orientem NO mass and I was struck by the demeanor of all present (80-100 people, at midday, with about half going to confession prior to and during mass). It was quiet, reflective and reverent throughout. Many genuflected before receiving our Lord. This posture and accompanying altar arrangement, to me, can make even the ugliest, most barren Roman church (of which there are many) suddenly look dignified, reverent and other-worldly. While the so-called Benedictine Arrangement is a very good interim step, the overwhelming majority of Roman churches are neither modeled after nor oriented like Roman basilicas and, therefore, this arrangement should be treated as a go-between only. Larger churches can elevate the altar in proportion to the length of the nave (as was traditionally done) arriving at optimal sightlines.

Separately, distribution on the tongue only would help to greatly curtail if not eliminate profanation. It is important to note that in the Christian East, the posture for reception is standing and on the tongue. There, Sunday commemorates the resurrection and therefore is celebratory. Standing is the normative posture when this is the case.

Father, this says it all, “and it is as spirit of Vatican II and cult of the priest's personality as you can get’. We are either going to worship our lord, or, the cult of personality of the priest/presider and each other. You can only drive the proverbially bus effectively when you are facing where you want to go. I’d prefer, therefore, for all to be facing the New Jerusalem.

rcg said...

OK, ByzRC is right. Ad orientem and I will kneel anyway. The Shortage of priests will reach a new crisis point as their heads explode one by one.

Anonymous said...

Ad orientem, because kneeling for communion then follows, as night the day. It seemed to me in the 1960s that versus populum (which came first) was the linchpin pulled that released the other disastrous abuses.

"So you would think that if so many Catholics were clamering for the good old Liturgical days . . . "

So long as "what the most Catholics are clamoring for" remains the criterion, the Novus Ordo will continue to disintegrate. In which case, what is to be gained, even if more and more people of less and less faith attend more and more diluted liturgy?

Anonymous said...

One thing going against St. Francis de Sales in the Atlanta area is its location---in southwest Cobb, where the Catholic population is sparse compared to east Cobb, north Fulton and north DeKalb, where the region's largest Catholic population can be found. Southwest Cobb historically has been heavily Protestant (basically Baptist and Methodist) and is getting more that way with the growing black population, which historically has been, of course, Baptist and Methodist. However, even if in a better location, I don't think we would see the masses abandon their current parishes for that. I've never heard anyone complain at my 6,000+ parish in Atlanta over the years about the ordinary form of the Mass, lack of altar rails, minimal use of incense or altar girls. But just as their are different liturgies in the Anglican and Orthodox Churches, so should such be allowed in the Roman church.

Anonymous said...

A week out from my 28th anniversary, while choosing between Ad Orientem and kneeling to receive the Blessed Sacrament both need to happen, I would opt for the return of kneeling to receive the Blessed Sacrament on the tongue. The whole practice of Communion in the hand has been an unmitigated disaster and the root cause of so much lack of due reverence for the Sacramental Presence of our Lord.

On another note - that 30,000 plus parish in Charlotte you mention - that pastor is retiring. Pray for his successor, he's going to have an interesting journey.

Joseph Johnson said...

I don't know---it's a hard choice for me because both things are so much of a hand in hand proposition, as I see it.

I do know this: I get really impatient and annoyed when someone superciliously corrects regarding the ending of sentences with prepositions. I know that's the grammatical rule but, in reality, it is not standard southern usage. To speak "correctly," in observance of that rule, sounds stilted and pompous to southern ears. The rules of grammar can change with usage.

rcg said...

All joking aside: this is a bull $#!€ dillemma. Did more than 1% want the Vetus Ordo replaced by the pig in the poke liturgy that didn't even exist when they decided to replace it? If this is going to be put to a vote then why not start with the NO and let the inmates of that Bedlam decide how it should be run?

Doctors make educated choices for their patient's treatments and observe the results to determine if it is the right course of action. If the Church is a field hospital for the people caught in life's war then there is a case to be made that the current treatment is wildly successful since so many are leaving and the ward population is down to 10% capacity. Before we head off for a round of golf, however, we should check to see how many of the patients that leave are going feet first.

John Nolan said...

The idea that one can't end a sentence with a preposition comes from a 19th century conceit which would impose Latin rules on English. Unlike other languages, English has a large number of phrasal verbs (verbs followed by one or more prepositions). One can, of course, replace them with Latin derivatives, and write 'tolerate' rather than 'put up with', but what's the point if one is merely trying to conform to a rule which doesn't exist in the first place?

Anonymous said...

Between ad orientem and communion while kneeling, no need to choose. You get both if you start with the right one. Father Z today mentions two parishes that went ad orientem a while back, and now--without kneeling for communion being pushed particularly--most parishioners have started on their own to receive on the tongue while kneeling.

Setting liturgical priorities properly is just a matter of having a sense for the liturgy, informed by tradition. For instance, ad orientem celebration has been integral to the liturgy from the beginning, while communion by the faithful was not an essential part of the Mass--indeed for many centuries it was a separate ceremony not included in the missal itself, which could optionally performed within the Mass, though is was sometimes delayed until the end of the Mass.

Marc said...

I think that Assumption Chapel (SSPX) in St. Mary's, Kansas, might have more than 1,000 households. They have 6 Masses on Sundays, a school, and a college. There are other SSPX outposts that might have similar numbers, such as Our Lady of Sorrows in Phoenix and Immaculate Conception in Post Falls, Idaho.

Our parish has about 300 families. But, keep in mind that 1,000 families in a Novus Ordo parish is going to be very different from 300 families in an SSPX parish. With our 300 families, we just had 50 people confirmed. I see that your parish also confirmed 50 people this year. And I see that your parish has nearly 1,000 families. So, things are a little different in traditional parishes.

Православный физик said...

Having observed Communion in various parishes of the Eastern variety, I'm going to have to say, Ad Orientem AND, the use of actual propers will have a profound impact on the Roman Liturgy.

It's not that Communion in the Hand in of itself is evil, it's the casual attitude in which Our Lord is approached, which isn't helped by the 4 hymns with nothing to do with the propers I believe makes more of an impact than the actual gesture itself.