MY COMMENTS FIRST: This is not a horrible document and it certainly gives some good pointers towards improving the celebration of the Modern Roman Missal. But not enough words are said about that and how simply following what is prescribed for this Roman Missal and options that can be chosen, while others eliminated or ignored, could enhance this form of the Mass which would lead to the astonishment we all should have for what God has accomplished for us through His Most Beloved Son, Jesus Christ and the Paschal Mystery.
I do believe that not only priests need to be reoriented on how to celebrate the Mass as an art, not a toy, but so too the assembly/congregation. We must make it possible for them to actively participate both interiorly and exteriorly.
One of the things that has distressed me about the recovery of the older Missal is that no one has taken seriously the need for the congregation to take the parts of the servers and the schola. Often the laity are quite content to zone out at the older form of the Mass and simply be swept up by what others are doing.
Many carry no missal for the vernacular translations of the changing parts of the Mass as they don’t care to know what is being prayed on their behalf in Latin by the priest or schola.
In this, I recognize it is not either/or but both/and. Sometimes we listen, something we join and speak together or sing together. But how many actually try to chant the Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Pater Noster, Agnus Dei? Sometimes some of the different forms of Gregorian Chant are impossible to join and only a trained schola can do it. What is wrong with simply using versions most people can sing?
Finally, this document makes abundantly clear the the older form of the Mass is to disappear over time.
For those who will grieve this fact, the only hope is that bishops will allow the Modern Missal to be celebrated with the same dignity and consistency that the older Missal is celebrated.
These communities need a modern Mass that is consistent and beautiful and reverent. Latin must be allowed. The Proper Chants must be chanted Ad orientem must be encouraged and kneeling for Holy Communion must be the unified method of receiving Holy Communion with standing seen as a pastoral exception.
Is that too much to ask? It does not seem to me that this exhortation forbids this.
Here are important paragraphs of this exhortation: