Yesterday, (Sunday, the 12th Sunday after Pentecost, orthe 19th Sunday of the Year) I took my turn celebrating our Cathedral's weekly 1 pm EF Mass.
Just as an aside, I was the associate pastor, as it was once called, at our Cathedral from 1985 to 1991. I returned to the Savannah area in 2016. When I enter our cathedral, it's as though the time between 1991 and 2016 didn't happen and I expect to see everyone there who was there in 1991. But alas, many aren't there, they are dead, but then again if in heaven or purgatory, they are at Mass! So, yes there is some nostalgia and as though time has stood still, but of course it hasn't.
But let's speak of the timeless EF Mass. For the most part, the EF Mass I celebrated on Sunday was exactly like the 12th Sunday after Pentecost Mass of my youth prior to Vatican II. Exactly. There was no freelancing. There was no ad lilbing. There was no creativity. I suspect the only thing different was the fact that the Cathedral's scola is perhaps one of the best young scolas in the country. I really can't remember how good the choirs or scolas were when I was a child in the pre-Vatican II Church.
But how could we offer a minor reform of the EF Mass to make it more palatable for earnest Catholics who are orthodox but find themselves mystified by the EF Mass when they attend for the first time but choose not to return because they don't know how to participate in this Mass given how they participate in their Ordinary Form Mass.
What is the main difference in the spirituality and devotional qualities of the EF Mass compared to the OF Mass? It is contemplative and more like attending Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament. Thus it is quiet for the layman for the most part. This is not true of the Ordinary Form whatsoever and any silences for supposed contemplation are usually contrived, not truly integral to the ritual.
This has to be made clear to Catholics, faithful Catholics, who are formed by the Ordinary Form's spirituality with is far from contemplative.
Once we make that clear and Ordinary Form Faithful Catholics understand it, then we have to teach them that they need to have a personal missal to know what the changing parts of the Mass are in the vernacular. For the unchanging parts of the Mass, they don't need to follow the Latin words of the priest verbatim as he prays it, but simply know the structure of those prayers in the vernacular.
The silent Roman Canon is always used. If one knows the structure of the Roman Canon in English, one doesn't need his personal missal. Watch the sign language or bodily postures of the priest and listen to the bells and you can hear him. This is the most contemplative part of the EF Mass completely lacking contemplation for the laity in the OF Mass no matter the English canon or Eucharistic prayer.
Then I think ultra traditional EF Catholics need to allow for some vernacular in the EF Mass.
For the sake of preserving Gregorian Chant, I would now be opposed to chanting the propers in the vernacular. If one has their personal missal, they can look at their English missal for the translation of the Latin. They don't need to sing along either--this is the contemplative aspect of the EF Mass that served the laity so well prior to Vatican II.
I would simply suggest that the first allowed vernacular be the chanting of the Collect by the priest.
The next for be for the allowance of the Epistle and Gospel to be chanted in the vernacular but not the Graudal and/or tract.
Now, I know some would say that this suggestion is too radical, but the Secret should be chanted aloud with the option of the vernacular since it changes.
Then the only other allowed vernacular would be the Post Communion Prayer.
No other changes (unless it is allowed to have lay readers for the Epistle. I would not oppose that and for the epistle to be read from the ambo.
If you want the EF Mass to gain more Catholics attending, my suggestions are common sense.