Friday, June 15, 2018


Vatican II did not intend this, but his is what happened:

Before Vatican II:
They said Vatican II mandated this:
 They said, no Vatican II didn't mandate stripping things and it was restored

When you look at the current mast photo of an ordination in the Extraordinary Form, you see why 95% of Catholics attended Mass each Sunday: it was otherworldly and it brought peace and beauty to people's lives. Something important was happening in the Church--a foretaste of heaven where everything would be made right and beautiful.

How is it that the implementation of Vatican II's liturgical suggestions got it so wrong? Did Vatican II mandate the stripping of churches, altars, railings, art, statuary and icons, the dismantling of reredoes?

No, only those who listened to liturgical theologians after Vatican II who promoted an "anti-Council" or the Protestantization of our liturgy and churches are the ones that caused this. I hope they repented before they died.


Victor said...

"Did Vatican II mandate the stripping of churches, altars, railings, art, statuary and icons, the dismantling of reredos?"

Yes it did. Bl. Paul VI's insistence on inserting the phrase "noble simplicity" into the liturgical conciliar document produced this vandalism.

Fortunately, Sacrosanctum Concilium is a disciplinary document, so what was thought important or necessary 50 years ago need not apply today through the proper authorisation.

John Nolan said...

And 'Blessed' Paul VI is to be canonized this year. The worst pope of modern times canonizing the second worst. You couldn't make it up.

Carol H. said...

I think it would have been more noble and simple to just leave well enough alone. Only the devil would want to dismantle God's house.

Anonymous said...

"Only the devil would want to dismantle God's house."

As if we knew that God's house is decorated with red velvet, faux gold tassels, and a somewhat gaudy baldacchino...

Victor said...

Mr Nolan:

'The worst pope of modern times canonizing the second worst.'

You have heard of the "old boy" network, I am sure. But for quite a while now there has been the "old pope" network that has made these canonisation of popes a requirement.

Carol H. said...

Anon @ 5:02 PM,

Please try reading the OT descriptions of how the Ark of the Covenant, the priests' vestments, and the tent and temple were to be made. Fine wood, gold, purple, and semi-precious stones were to be used- God was quite clear on how His house should look.

ByzRC said...

"As if we knew that God's house is decorated with red velvet, faux gold tassels, and a somewhat gaudy baldacchino..."

We also don't know that white-washed, minimalist, abstract and/or somewhat gaudy felt banners are the principal decorations of God's house either. I'm sure this will swiftly earn me a custom-crafted, smug/holier-than-thou retort but, I think I'd rather attend where we try to provide the beauty that we cannot even contemplate using the best materials worked by the best craftsmen.

Anonymous said...

In the aftermath of Vatican II, an overwhelming fetish for novelty swept over the Church. The novelty of using the vernacular and the virtual wipe-out of Latin, rearranging the sacred furnishings and superimposing sentimental reflections onto the canon and the collects, the annihilation in parishes of Gregorian chant with the widespread introduction of my favourite ditty.
The novelty began to wane within a decade following the council and Catholics have long since walked away in their droves.
The restoration of the Pre Vat II Mass has helped to hold back the tide but it will not be enough. The Novus Ordo when carried our faithfully and in accordance with its sacred rubrics is crucial to rebuilding the Kingdom of Christ on earth. Pope Bendict's 'mutual enrichment' is the way forward.

John Nolan said...


There should be a moratorium of at least half a century (preferably longer) before popes are considered for canonization. The greatest pope of the high Middle Ages, Innocent III, was not canonized.

Don't get me wrong - John Paul II was in my opinion the greatest man of the last quarter of the twentieth century, despite competition from Ronald Reagan, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela and Margaret Thatcher. (The last-named was actually a woman, but she had more cojones than any of her male colleagues, and can be regarded as an honorary member of the male sex.)

Not the feminine gender, lest Anon-the-Troll pop up and start nit-picking.

John Nolan said...

The masthead photograph shows Malcolm MacMahon OP, Archbishop of Liverpool, conferring ordinations in the FSSP church in Warrington, Lancs., which he himself established as a shrine church.

Before his elevation he was my bishop in Nottingham and in 2010 he marked the 10th year of his consecration by celebrating a Pontifical High Mass in the classic Roman Rite. He's not an arch-conservative either - too many people think that liturgical beauty is a political issue.

I notice that A-the-T has popped up again to display his ignorance. Warrington is neo-Gothic and does not boast a baldacchino, gaudy or otherwise.

Anonymous said...

An appreciation of Church History will inform commentators that there were worse popes in the past with the Borja and Medici dynastys .
Paul VI completed what John XIII had begun. Even if Sacrosanctum Concillium was misinterpreted and its implementation spiralled out of control, Paul VI courageously gave the world 'Humane Vitae'. Most of its critics have never read the relatively short document which has proven to be prophetic.

Anonymous said...

Carol, I've read the OT descriptions you mention.

If those are the plans we MUST follow, then every cruciform church is in violation of those biblical "norms."

Every priest who fails to adorn the hem of his tunic with bells and pomegranates is in violation of those norms.

Every priest who fails to wear a turban without a blue cord fastened to the front thereof is in violation of those norms.

You see, I read those OT descriptions with understanding. I also read with understanding the warning against idolatry, "Are you the one to build me a house to dwell in?" (2 Sam 7:5)

No, we are not given clear instructions on how we should adorn God's house and the ministers who serve therein.

Nor are we told what constitutes beauty. Ornate, baroque or rococo churches can be and are beautiful. So are plain, largely unadorned country chapels. Elegant Italianate churches can be visually stunning. So is the French neo-Gothic chapel at the Monastery of Our Lady of the Holy Spirit in Conyers, Georgia, which has, aside from it's modern stained glass windows, little or no decoration. Whitewashed walls, black terrazzo floors, simple wooden stalls for the monks - it is a symphony of simplicity and, to many, exceptionally beautiful.

If that monastic chapel, or the contemporary Catholic parish church around the corner, is not to your liking, well, fine. But don't presume that your tastes are God's tastes or that your plan for the decoration of churches and chapels is God's plan.

Mr. Nolan, the photographs Fr. McDonald posted in THE DIVINE LITURGY SWEEPING US UP INTO HEAVEN AND ITS PEACE AND BEAUTY do, indeed, show a baldacchino. "a ceremonial canopy of stone, metal, or fabric over an altar, throne, or doorway."

Notice that "fancy" baldacchino over the bishop's chair...?

Marc said...

There’s a major difference between a sinner pope and a heretic pope. Sin is found in all men and doesn’t separate one from the Church; whereas, heresy does indeed separate one from the Church.

So, I disagree that pointing to the bad pope’s of the past is wholly relevant to the last few decades.

Henry said...

The Borgia and Medici popes may have been worse men in aspects of their personal lives, but this doesn't mean they were worse popes--none of them did the damage to Catholic faith and doctrine that is occurring in the present papacy. Not even Alexander VI with his numerous mistresses and illegitimate children.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I disagree that Pope Paul VI was the worst pope. There was a giddiness (a pre-Vatican II triumphalism applied to a "pastoral ecumenical council") that convinced the pope and bishops that Vatican II would usher in the Holy Spirit as though at a new Pentecost bringing about a "new springtime" for the Church.

People believed that for the most part, especially those in the the clergy and religious.

If there was ever a 20th century symbol of the meaning behind the Old Testament "Tower of Babel" passage, this is it!

Pope Paul VI began to realize the folly of what was happening with the "spirit of Vatican II" by 1968 but was impotent or unwilling to apply pre-Vatican II harshness on post-Vatican II idiots. He was weak but not corrupt.

John Nolan said...

Unfortunately, even if we believe that Paul VI came to appreciate the damage caused by the Council which he himself reconvened, he had ten years to put it right and signally failed to do it.

A tragic figure? Yes. A saint? Definitely not.