Sunday, June 13, 2021



Father Z, although somewhat ideological about it, is right. The Latin Mass, and in my opinion, in either form, unifies Catholics as does the common ritual in both. Divisions begin to occur when diversity in language and ritual are allowed to reign as is encouraged in the ideology of inculturation and the rubrical allowance in the Ordinary Form of “In these or similar words.”  Also, in the Ordinary Form the personality or lack thereof of the priest plays an ultra negative part in its celebration.

Let’s talk about the unity of the Church prior to Vatican II in diverse cultures from the USA to China, to Burma to the North Pole and Antarctica, the Church was united in language and liturgy. Devotions both private and communal were the inculturation aspects of the Church’s spirituality and these devotions, most of which do not need an ordained man to celebrate, flourished. Inculturation was splendid. 

But as it concerns the Mass, any priest throughout the world could celebrate the Mass for any congregation no matter where in the world and as remote as Siberia. The only difficulty for the priest would be the homily if he could not speak the vernacular. But that could be solved by having an interpreter and if no interpreter was available, the Mass stood on its own without a homily. 

Yes, the Latin Mass is a great source for the Church’s unity.


Pierre said...

St. John XXIII said “Latin is the language which joins the Church of today” in Veterum Sapientia.

Anonymous said...

The NO was forcefully imposed on the Church. It is a burden and a source of misunderstanding among the faithful. No one is sure what it is a sacrifice (a gift) or mystery, or just a meal and a community get together? It can be experienced based on the understanding or misunderstanding of those in attendance. It can inspire some yet also sadden and even lead to anger in others. It is a tragedy in its many form of distortions confounding worshippers. Why is the source and summit of Christian Catholic worship so neglectfully exercised?

Pierre said...

This is what Cardinal Zen had to say about the EF:

"The Tridentine Mass is not divisive; on the contrary, it unites us to our brothers and sisters of all ages, to the saints and martyrs of every time, to those who have fought for their faith and who have found in it inexhaustible spiritual nourishment."

Anonymous said...

Yes, the Traditional Latin Mass was instrumental in forming one unified Kingdom. Vatican two and its synods and preference of individuality created a plethora of duchies. It purposely did away with the religious life and ridiculed private devotions. The tradition was geared towards unity, the new wave approach was to disassemble and promote fragmentation. One could call Vatican Two the Church's neutron bomb.

William said...

You can tell I just got back from Mass by the teeth marks on my steering wheel. Folks no longer act like Catholics because they no longer believe like Catholics. It was painful to consider that half the good people present neither believed in the Real Presence nor viewed abortion as immoral. The people in the pews are not to blame for this sad state of affairs, dear priest and bishops.

Anonymous said...

A lot of non-Western prelates disagreed strongly at Vatican II with the idea the Latin Mass was unifying. Especially those in the far East who speak tonal languages having ZERO in common with Western languages. One could count those fluent in Latin on one hand, and no translations available for the poor masses of people.

The real disaster was the overhaul of the Mass magnified exponentially by Western abuses of same. The Mass simply should have been allowed to be muchly in the vernacular, while otherwise essentially staying the same, THEN you would have your unity where a visitor would know what was going on even though ignorant of the language.

The WRONG answer is to have the visitor know what is going on while the locals are ignorant of the language.

ByzRus said...

Some dioceses offer mass in so many languages, I can't imagine how they possibly manage it. Latin was a unifier, it could become one again (it happened with Hebrew). I've attended multi-lingual masses where I privately wished it was just in Latin as my skeletal knowledge of that language was more developed than any other being relied upon.

Pierre said...

Anonymous at 1:54,

So you know more than St. John XXIII who issued Veterum Sapientia on the eve of the Council

Anonymous said...

What was issued before the council is moot. Eastern bishops rightly pointed out the Roman Church was western-centric in culture and language, rather than being universal, even while other ancient eastern churches in communion with Rome had their own languages and even rites.

The western churches today are a minority of the 2 billion Catholics in the world, and it seems many westerners just do not care. As it is, there are very few true experts left in the western churches who truly are fluent in the language.

There is nothing innately holy about a pagan language, which was only used in Rome while Greek was the universal language of the early churches, and the Latin adopted by the Church is not even good Latin, but a vulgar/vulgate later corruption of the language. It has advantages when translating from ancient tongues, but that only matters if anyone happens to speak it, which again, hardly anybody does, today approaching zero.

The Church will soon need contract out Latin document writing, there being so few raised from childhood being taught the language, which is the only way to true fluency.

Pierre said...

Here is what Cardinal Zen has to say about the EF:

"The Tridentine Mass is not divisive; on the contrary, it unites us to our brothers and sisters of all ages, to the saints and martyrs of every time, to those who have fought for their faith and who have found in it inexhaustible spiritual nourishment."

Anonymous said...

Cardinal Zen is NOT advocating universal Latin, but only defending its use by those who would prefer it.

Tom Marcus said...

It's easy to understand why our anonymous "expert" on Latin remains anonymous.

Actually, there is a very good argument that Latin is indeed a sacred language. But before we get to that, the best thing about Latin is that it is a dead language and the observation that no one is raised from childhood on the language has been true for generations. The advantage of a dead language is that it is no longer organic and no longer evolving. It cannot change. Thus, the meaning of the prayers and the very meaning of the words cannot change. Compare that to English where "terrible" once meant huge and now it means something bad (one of just thousands of examples).

The Titulus (the sign over Jesus' head on the cross) read "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews". It was printed in Latin, Greek and Aramaic. Since Jesus shed His blood on the cross, it has long been argued that those languages were consecrated. Of course, one would expect the "experts" to scoff at such a story. Perhaps they will argue that the current Titulus in possession is a medieval forgery--which has never been proven definitively and, even if it were, it is irrelevant, since the point is that the words of the languages on the cross were consecrated, not whether or not we have the actual sign in our possession.

But what is particularly noteworthy is the testimony of exorcist priests. Most priests who have performed the rite of exorcism have all testified that praying in Latin is far more effective. Laypersons assisting at exorcisms have testified that switching to Latin prayers during an exorcism escalates the demons into a state of frightened submission:

Of course, none of this will have any effect or persuasion on people who have their minds made up. But the information is out there.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @11:43

I suppose you could call Vatican II a "neutron bomb", but I would prefer to call it an unmitigated disaster that failed and failed miserably.

The statistics (which I won't rehash here) of the "postconcilar Church" speak for themself. I would just agree with what someone observed in an earlier post: We have been dealing with Vatican II for about .02 or .03 percent of the Church's existence. Our lifetimes are a mere blip on the long radar of its existence. I am convinced that as time marches on and the Church's failure to deal with its self-implosion increases, we will eventually find our sanity and realize that this "Ecumenical Council" was corrupted and sabotaged, it has no authority and, by its own admission, is merely "pastoral" (a launch pad for another trajectory of ridicule) and will one day be an embarrassing stain in the history of our Church, and nothing more. The most unfortunate result that cannot be erased are the lost souls that resulted from this aberration.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

I see you are back to mind reading again

Anonymous said...

It's not surprising to see some people presuming to know precisely what Cardinal Zen was and was not advocating. Zen's very existence is a shameful rebuke to the modern Church and the sellouts who run it. Qualifying his remarks or minimizing their significance should hardly surprise us.

Victor said...

Anonymous at 4:19-
"There is nothing innately holy about a pagan language..." Latin, Hebrew, and Greek were made holy by their use on the Cross of our Saviour.

"...the Latin adopted by the Church is not even good Latin, but a vulgar/vulgate later corruption of the language..." It looks like you have never read Christine Mohrman's analysis of liturgical Latin. You are confusing the pedestrian (koine) Greek of the New Testament authors with the Latin of the Church.

Anonymous said...

With everyone so peachy keen to totally blow off an ecumenical council, the most ecumenical in all of history, and who rightly noted the problems of Latin for a Universal Church, which problems were apparent even at the council with majority of bishops even from the West having trouble following Latin documants, they proposed a simple solution, which was the use of some or all of the Mass as it stood but in the vernacular, if desired locally, a sentiment I strongly share.

I think the Latin Mass rendered in classic English which is capable of rendering the Latin subtleties more precisely to be a thing of exceptional beauty. Most English speaking Latin Mass fans prefer the Latin Mass due only to the English translations in old Missal reprints, and for no other reason.....not as if they actually speak Latin.

The problem was not the use of vernacular but the new entire Mass composed out of what turns out mostly thin air while claiming it historical and back to original roots, which claims have not held up to scholarship, plus all the other changes and variations introduced and allowed. THIS was the great splintering. NOT merely local translations of an otherwise universal form of worship.

As for the idea of turning back the clock and FORCING the rest of the world to adopt Latin, consider the insurmountable obstacle of translation....over 50yrs later, WE only recently obtained a more accurate translation of the newer Mass, and have YET to have its matching Liturgy Of The Hours. Folk are asking all that be scrapped, because WE have old missals with good translations, and those people not giving a fig if the rest of the world lacks the same.

As for Cardinal Zen, he was a major architect in making the Mass comprehensible for the Chinese in Hong Kong and likely swelling the local church ranks. Similar strides in Africa in the huge varieties of languages and dialects on that continent. And those dreaming of a return to a Latin Mass would destroy all that.

And, since disregarding the Council as in error on need for vernacular, we are left with the forced Latin minority squabbling over WHICH Latin Mass, since what successive Popes and a council said do not matter, so, do we use the 1570 Tridentine, the 1910, Divino Afflatu, 1955 or 1960? No matter WHAT you choose, a significant number will disagree and splinter their own way.

Unifying? Dream on.

Tom Marcus said...

Thank you Victor! You make another good point: Ecclesial Latin itself is especially sacred because of its limited usage--i.e., it has never been used for profanity or inappropriate jokes. Just one more point to consider.

Now let us make room for the naysayers. After all, they have to have the last word.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting to notice that our anonymous dissenter (as is his right) loves to use words like "force" "forcing" etc.., suggesting the rebellious mentality of children of the 60's. "YOU CAN'T MAKE ME!"

Of course, that's just an observation, but a couple of things should be noted:

1. The Church has authority. Authorities sometimes DO force policy. It ISN"T a democracy and the person who yells the loudest doesn't "win" or get their way.

2. We have a precedent: The church FORCED the uniformity of the Mass after the Council of Trent. Pope Paul VI FORCED the New Mass upon us. (there are probably a few thousand more examples, but those two particularly come to mind).

Frankly, when the Mass of the Ages triumphs--and I have NO doubt it will--it probably won't be because anyone forced it. It is far more likely because mankind will be so downtrodden and the few remaining Catholics who have kept the faith will run to embrace it -- especially when we no longer have popes who are pussyfooting around about Tradition but who are willing to say what they mean and mean what they say.

And I quite agree Vatican II was the most "ecumenical" gathering the Church ever concocted--or should I say pandered to. Had the bishops involved spent more energy on the faith and less on doing backflips to win over schismatics and non-believers (none of whom WERE "won over") it might not have been corrupted.

Time will tell.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K at 6:12,

So you are repudiating St. John XXIII’s statements in Veterum Sapientia? You sound like the typical cafeteria catholic we see around us. Latin was unifying up until the disaster that is known as Vatican II. You come around here to vent your frustrations on those who still care about Holy Mother the Church. Your manner and approach will sway no one. You’d be much happier with the folks invested in the liturgical failure at Pray Tell

Anonymous said...

In all fairness,

1). I don't think it's fair for us to presume to call our dissenting brother (or sister or non-gender specific primate) "Anonymous K". Someone actually called ME that a week or two ago and you could be just as wrong.

2). Let's be welcoming. We need snarky, angry people who insist on "showing us". It keeps us sharper.

30. Jesus put up with Judas.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:11 pm

When a priest engages in snark and general nastiness, I do not give him a pass. He should emulate Fathers McDonald and Fox and the problem would go away.


Anonymous said...

Liturgical Latin is a polyglot artifact of the Middle Ages.

The original post and most posters here are talking of forcing the Latin Mass on the Universal Church, which Universal Church is in no way prepared for that. You may as well be volunteering yourself to be sentenced to Masses in Cantonese for the rest of your life in all fairness. But fairness to other believers never enters these debates.

If anyone doubts division over which Latin Mass and Psalter to use, they clearly are ignoring the squabbling in trad circles already ongoing. And I note veey few priests pushing for the old Psalter with all 150 Psalms weekly and in Latin.

Not that I am fan of the new Liturgy Of The Hours with its rotten translations and sanitized Psalmody with a profoundly Luther type ommission of uncomfy parts, but a more manageable schedule would certainly be welcome by more active religious such as priests.

And rcg or whatever calls ANYbody who disagrees with him "Father K", or etc, as anyone who disagrees with him MUST be Father K.

John Nolan said...

There are a number of sound reasons for retaining Latin as a liturgical language in the so-called Ordinary Form, and it can exist alongside the vernacular. The classic Roman liturgy does not have a vernacular option, so is outside the scope of the argument.

A decent church choir or schola cantorum is not going to turn its back on the incomparable treasury of Catholic sacred music from Gregorian chant to 20th century masterpieces simply on the grounds that it sets Latin texts. Anglican cathedral and collegiate choirs are not averse to singing in Latin although they have a patrimony of English choral music dating back to the sixteenth century.

The BBC's classical music station (Radio 3) assumes that its listeners, of all religions and none, have some familiarity with the Latin liturgy of the Catholic Church. It's part of a shared musical culture which is by no means confined to Europe.

Anonymous said...

Catholic Faith

I am not against any religion or people.I am affirming the Catholic Faith in Rome according to Vatican Council II interpreted rationally.
The Council in Ad Gentes 7 says all need faith and baptism for salvation (John 3:5, Mark 16:16) and LG 8, LG 14, LG 16, UR 3, NA 2, GS 22 etc in Vatican Council II (VC2) refer to hypothetical cases, for me.They are not objective and known non Catholics in 1965-2021 saved outside the Church.So practically we cannot know of any one saved outside the Church, without faith and the baptism of water.
Most people assume that LG 8, LG 14, LG 16, UR 3, NA 2, GS 22 etc refer to known non Catholics saved outside the Church in 1965-2021 and so they become exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus(EENS) and the Athanasius Creed which says outside the Church there is no salvation.This is a false premise.There are no such visible cases.If any one was saved outside the Church it would only be known to God.So there are two interpretations of VC2, one rational and the other irrational, one without the false premise and the other with it.Mine is the rational version.The popes since Paul VI have been irrational.They made an objective error.
So the norm for salvation for Catholics and non Catholics according to the Catholic Church is faith and the baptism of water (AG 7,EENS, Syllabus of Errors of Pope Pius IX, Athanasius Creed, Catechism of the Catholic Church (24Q,27Q), Catechism of the Catholic Church (845,846,1257).
So I am only affirming my Catholic Faith and not against any religion or any one.Jesus says to love and serve others and not judge and condemn.
As long as a non Catholic is alive on earth there is hope.The Holy Spirit has taught the Church over the centuries, that God the Father wants all people to be united in the Catholic Church (CCC 845).The Catholic Church is like the Ark of Noah that saves in the flood (CCC 845).All are oriented to the Catholic Church for salvation and are called to be members ( CDF,Notification on Fr. J.Dupuis sj,2001).
Being saved with the baptism of desire or invincible ignorance are ‘zero cases’ in our reality said the American Catholic apologist, John Martignoni.They are not exceptions to the dogma EENS confirmed Archbishop Thomas E. Gullickson, former Nuncio to Switzerland.This is also the common sense view of Fr. Stefano Visintin osb, former Dean of Theology and Rector of the Benedictine, University of St. Anselm, Rome.
So for me VC2 is dogmatic. It has a continuity with the past Magisterium of the Church on outside the Church there being no salvation.
All must believe in the Jewish Messiah,predicted by the Jewish prophets.He made an eternal Covenant, with his Death and Resurection, for the salvation of all who believe and trust in Him, in the Catholic Church, the only Church he founded and which is His Mystical Body, outside of which/whom there is no salvation.
The Catholic Church is ‘the pearl of great price’,it is the treasure a man finds in the field and gives all to possess it.

Anonymous said...

In a corporation saw its business on a steady decline for even a couple of year, the head of that business would urgently try and find the cause so that the trend could be reversed. If the current CEO couldn’t find the source of the problem, a new CEO would be elected. A 90% decline? Shareholders would demand a criminal investigation.

As a parishioner when someone (usually a non practicing ) discovers that I attend Church as a practicing Catholic, I nearly always get statements of subtle hostility. The reason for the hostility is never given, but I guess many times it is because of their lifestyle choices, or politics (feminism) or priests behaving badly (sexual abuse/reports in the media or priests deliberately undermining the faith). I guess also some don’t like the concept of the church club, that is lay people who exert their personality on a congregation. Vatican 2 did cause some problems, but not all. Can the Church revert to its former Latin self? I doubt it. Can it use its history to revitalize itself? Yes, I think that’s a possibility.

John Nolan said...

'Liturgical Latin is a polyglot artifact of the Middle Ages'. That sweeping statement assumes that there is a style of Latin which is peculiar to that used in the Christian Church and is somehow degenerate. Fifty years ago I encountered academics (not a few of them Catholics) who denigrated the Latin of the Vulgate and of (say) Peter the Venerable. They ignored the fact that St Jerome deliberately chose to translate the bible into a style of Latin which would be more intelligible to the masses.

The Latin of the liturgy is not that of the Vulgate. Collects etc. are in a 'classical' style, and the oldest anaphora that has come down to us - the Roman Canon - is framed in a rhetorical manner that is certainly not the vernacular of the street.

Medieval Latin is not a 'corrupt' version of the classical language. The 'Golden Sequence' (Veni Sancte Spiritus) attributed to the thirteenth century Archbishop of Canterbury Stephen Langton is wonderful poetry. That it does not conform to the classical norms of Vergil is immaterial.

Pope Leo XIII was a Latinist who composed exquisite poetry in the classical style, but never denigrated the Latin of the liturgy.

Anonymous said...


The traditionalists at the St. Benedict Center, Richmond,New Hampshire, USA are still being told that they are not Catholic since they do not interpret Vatican Council II and the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus (EENS) with the common irrationality, the false premise, used by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith,Vatican and the bishop and Curia of the Diocese of Manchester, USA.The use of the false premise to interpret Church documents and then project an alleged rupture with Tradition, is dishonest and unethical.
If Cardinal Luiz Ladaria, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith,Vatican, would interpret Vatican Council II without the false premise he would be called an ‘extremist’ by the Leftist media.Since without the false premise, the Council would be dogmatic. It would affirm the dogma EENS with Ad Gentes 7 and LG 8,LG 14, LG 16, UR 3,GS 22 etc would not be exceptions, as, it is wrongly be interpreted by the CDF today.
Similarly when Bishop Peter Libasci, bishop of Manchester and Fr.Georges de Laire, Judicial Vicar, interpret Vatican Council II , the Creeds,Catechisms, extra ecclesiam nulla salus, being saved with the baptism of desire and invincible ignorance with the false premise, that they avoid being labelled traditionalists, extremists etc.
Presently Bishop Lbasci and Fr. Georges de Laire, like the ecclesiastics at the CDF, Vatican, are publically dishonest and are defaming the SBC.