Love for Latin Liturgy More than a Fashion

Pontifical Mass at the Altar of the Chair of St. Peter's

As a lover of traditional liturgy, I was momentarily excited by a report last week that, for once in my life, I might actually be hip to the trends. It would be a nearly-unprecedented thing for me, and I’m still not sure how to feel about it. But according to a recent second-hand report, Pope Francis thinks that liturgical traditionalism is now fashionable among the young.

Tradition-sympathetic Rorate Caeli offered the quotation from Archbishop Jan Graubner, who reportedly said to Vatican Radio that:

When we were discussing those who are fond of the ancient liturgy and wish to return to it, it was evident that the Pope speaks with great affection, attention, and sensitivity for all in order not to hurt anyone. However, he made a quite strong statement when he said that he understands when the old generation returns to what it experienced, but that he cannot understand the younger generation wishing to return to it.

When I search more thoroughly”—the Pope said—“I find that it is rather a kind of fashion [in Czech: ‘móda’]. And if it is a fashion, therefore it is a matter that does not need that much attention. It is just necessary to show some patience and kindness to people who are addicted to a certain fashion. But I consider greatly important to go deep into things, because if we do not go deep, no liturgical form, this or that one, can save us.”

Now, it’s never a good idea to make too much of rumors. We don’t know exactly what the Holy Father said, and whatever it was quite obviously was not intended as an authoritative ex cathedra pronouncement. Even if Pope Francis’ remarks really were as tradition-unsympathetic as they sound, liturgical traditionalists can take comfort in the fact that he seems to regard them more as a benign nuisance than an active menace. In the wake of Pope Benedict’s assiduous efforts to encourage liturgical renewal, traditionalists are better off now than they have been since before Vatican II. A little benign neglect should not now cause them too much grief.

Nevertheless, the rumor caused a stir. Partly, that is because it lent further strength to the already-established impression that Pope Francis dislikes liturgical traditionalists. Also, the quoted passage expresses a view of the traditionalist movement (and particularly of the younger Catholics who have flocked to it) that is shared by many other Catholics. It thus invites us to consider once more the movement to revitalize older Catholic traditions (and particularly the Extraordinary Form of the Mass) which blossomed under the pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI. Is it fair to dismiss this movement as mere fashion or fad?

It’s easy to understand why some might want to. Traditionalists are frequently taken to task for being bitter, obsessive and obnoxiously superior. While none of these criticisms are totally without foundation, I find that mainstream cradle Catholics can themselves become quite embittered when they realize that secular liberals are not the only people in the world who have critical things to say about their cultural and liturgical sensibilities. More than one Catholic friend has become uncharacteristically spiteful when discoursing on the defects of the “rad trads.”

This knee-jerk defensiveness is to my mind fairly understandable. Nowadays it is counter-cultural to be a committed, Mass-attending Catholic of any sort, and to someone who has become accustomed to fending off attacks from the left, it can be unsettling to take criticism from a different angle. It should also be admitted that not all traditionalists take pains to press their criticisms in prudent and charitable ways. Even when they do, however, it’s hard to find a nice way to explain to someone that his sensibilities are malformed and his preferred forms of worship defective.

Young traditionalists are undeniably the greatest source of controversy. When older Catholics rhapsodize traditional liturgy, this is comparatively easy to dismiss, since it is understood that older people normally have a lingering attachment to the habits and tastes that they cultivated in youth. If older Catholics were the only ones agitating for traditional liturgy, they could be politely tolerated for another decade or two, at which point the movement would dissipate on its own. But now, younger people are voluntarily donning the mantle of liturgical tradition. This is more threatening. Why would anyone want to return to older liturgical forms if the ones we have now are (as their proponents like to think) better, and more suited to modern needs?

To those who find the new liturgical movement displeasing, it makes sense to dismiss it as a mere fashion or fad, since this implies that the attraction is shallow, ephemeral and a product of whimsical circumstance. If the new liturgical movement is just a fad, then it really isn’t necessary to pay it much attention; after all, fads pass and fashions change. More importantly, if the new liturgical movement is just a fashion, we need not regard it as evidence that there is anything defective in mainstream Catholic culture and liturgical life. Anything the young people might value in older liturgical forms can be supplied just as readily by newer ones.

One way to find out what young traditionalists really think is to ask them. The best way to understand the new liturgical movement is by seeking out a Mass in the Extraordinary Form, and observing the community that gathers. If that isn’t feasible, however, there are plenty of online resources for the liturgically curious.

People who have had bad experiences with liturgical traditionalists may be a little softened once they see how they interact among themselves. Catholics devoted to traditional liturgy have come to expect that they will be regarded with hostility and suspicion by many of their fellow Catholics. When their desires for reverent liturgy are satisfied, their reactionary tendencies recede into the background, and their love of beauty comes to the fore. This is one thing that is consistently mentioned when young traditionalists explain their attraction to liturgy. They are drawn to the beauty and solemnity of older liturgical forms, which bring them to a real appreciation of the power of the Sacraments.

Is this beauty and solemnity unique to the older liturgical forms? Not necessarily. The Novus Ordo Mass can be celebrated with great reverence and solemnity, as it regularly is in St. Agnes Parish here in St. Paul. Unfortunately, this is not the norm in every parish. In an effort to make the Mass more “accessible,” we dress it up in forms less reminiscent of the Courts of Heaven, and more reminiscent of the library “story hour” to which I sometimes take my children.

I don’t mean to sound contemptuous here. As a non-Catholic undergraduate at Notre Dame, I must have attended a hundred such Masses, and at the time I was fairly unperturbed. Even as a teenager I tended to gravitate to more solemn forms of worship, but still, the dormitory Masses had their charms. It was fairly enjoyable to sing campy songs while standing arm-in-arm with my friends, just as it is now sometimes fun to participate in story hour with my children. Nothing about that experience, however, made me feel that I was missing anything important when I slipped to the back of the chapel instead of joining my friends in the Communion line. When I discovered the traditional Latin Mass in my first year of graduate school, I was suddenly stricken with an intense thirst to receive the Sacraments for myself. I suddenly realized (which, through hundreds of Notre Dame Masses, had never occurred to me before) that the Sacrament was the central point of the Mass.

If young people are indeed “addicted” to traditional liturgy, I would contend that beauty and grace are the things they find most intoxicating. It strikes me as the sort of addiction that ought to be encouraged.

Admittedly, it is not impossible to find these things through newer liturgical forms. There is one more thing, however, that draws young people to the new liturgical movement. Blogger Susanna Spencer captures the point well in a reflection on her own discovery of the traditional liturgy. As a cradle Catholic, she was always surrounded by Catholic things. Nevertheless, in traditional liturgy she felt she was uncovering a long and rich Catholic tradition that her earlier experiences had obscured. In a particularly moving passage, she compares her discovery of that tradition to the experiences of the Israelites returning to the land of their ancestors (as related in the Book of Nehemiah). Standing once again on the sacred ground of their fathers, the people weep when they hear the law read aloud once more. They are simultaneously overcome by joy and by sadness, because in appreciating the beauty of what they have regained, they also understand the magnitude of what was lost through sin and disobedience.

Young Catholics have a deep yearning to be reconnected to the rich Catholic tradition that is their rightful heritage. Having grown up in the shadow of egregious doctrinal disobedience and liturgical neglect, they feel exiled from that tradition, and many ardently desire to return. Revitalizing older devotions and liturgical forms is one way of building bridges back to our own country and people, who carried the torch of faith through the centuries. This is not a fashion. It is, as for the Israelites, a way of rediscovering who we really are.

Editor’s note: The image above depicts a Pontifical High Mass at the Blessed Sacrament Chapel in St. Peter’s Basilica.

Rachel Lu

By

Rachel Lu, a Catholic convert, teaches philosophy at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota where she lives with her husband and four boys. Dr. Lu earned her Ph.D. in philosophy at Cornell University. Follow her on Twitter at rclu.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

    I was 24 years old in 1969, when the Novus Ordo was introduced, so I well remember the Tridentine mass and the manner in which it was, for the most part, celebrated.

    I recall Low Mass in Notre Dame de Paris – the choir, from the chancel arch to the high altar is 36m and the transept adds a further 14m, so someone in the front pew was 50m (162 feet) from the priest, under a vault 33m high. The nave is 60m long, so someone at the back was about 100m from him – about the length of a football field. There was no sound system.

    A Low Mass was completely inaudible and the Sanctus bell served a very practical purpose. When the priest turned to us, we knew, of course, that he was saying “Dominus vobiscum,” but, had he said « Salut les copains » only the server would have been any the wiser.

    Sermons were preached from the pulpit in the nave. The celebrant’s manner was usually brisk, but reverent, and his gestures restrained; without a homily, mass lasted for some 20 minutes.

    That is, perhaps, an extreme case, but even in the typical parish church, the distance from altar to front pew was often a good 20m (65 feet).

    Now, I happen to regard Haydn’s Nelson Mass (Missa in Angustiis) as one of the great moments of Western Music, I love Mozart’s Coronation Mass and I know few things more lovely than Fauré’s In Paradisum. I love the early composers – Josquin des Prez and Guillaume Dufay, but it is the music, rather than the form of the rite it accompanies that is important here.

    • stevo

      When is the last time you heard this at Mass?

      http://fisheaters.com/forumpix/adoramustechriste.html

      It is this type of appropriate music (and yours mentioned above) that is missing from Mass today. Reform the music, reform the liturgy.

    • ColdStanding

      You wouldn’t want the average Joe doing a lawyer’s job, would you? Why do you complain (it is often difficult to tell with your posts what, specifically, you are criticizing, so I have to read into them, which means I often have a mistaken reading. C’est la guerre.) that the priest is doing his specialized job and you can’t see or hear him or participate in his work? Yours is a modern complaint. The parishioner from the time which you speak was to be fervently supplication Our Heavenly Father in the name of His Blessed Son, for mercy and etc. It seems off for you to suggest it a fault of the cathedral builders not to also develop a serviceable sound system.

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        Sacrosanctum Concilium was merely reiterating the perennial teaching of the Church, when it teaches, “He is present in His word, since it is He Himself who speaks when the holy scriptures are read in the Church” ; this presupposes audibility. Again, “ Pastors of souls must therefore realize that, when the liturgy is celebrated, something more is required than the mere observation of the laws governing valid and licit celebration; it is their duty also to ensure that the faithful take part fully aware of what they are doing, actively engaged in the rite, and enriched by its effects.” I need hardly remind you that “liturgy” ( λειτουργία) means “people’ work.”

        The Low Mass, unique to the Latin rite, was an unfortunate Mediaeval innovation, not “traditional” at all.

        One very simple solution, common in 19th century Catholic chapels in Scotland, is a nearly square building, with galleries on three sides, to reduce the distance between the worshipper and the altar.

        • ColdStanding

          You suffer from an entirely natural understanding of the mass.

          There is no distance between God and anything, because God does not occupy space. Additionally, the important thing is that the Holy Spirit dwells within us. If we be in a state of sanctifying grace, it matters not in the least what distance we are from the altar, nor if we hear a word.

          • Michael Paterson-Seymour

            Then why not imitate the Religious Society of Friends and dispense with all external forms of worship? “Spiritual benefits cannot be wrought by material instruments” said George Fox. Why do we need ministers of the word and ordinances?

            What did the ecumenical, most holy and inspired Council mean by “actively engaged in the rite”?

            • ColdStanding

              It may not matter what the distance from the altar is, however it is a matter of great importance to be at the mass. A hammer and saw can not build a house, but a man wield and hammer and saw to build a house. As man is both matter and spirit, it is fitting that the Holy Spirit wield matter to our spiritual benefit.

              What did they mean. Ay, there’s the rub. Unlike every other council where terms are clearly defined, this statement is ambiguous. A great number of people have been attempting to answer this requirement. In so doing, they seem to have checked their brains at the door or used it as licence for every species of silliness. The authors of the line are now mostly dead, adding reticence to reticence.

              To me, it merely is an admonition at against unrecollected passivity (being a lump on a log) at mass.

              • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                It may also mean the truly traditional practice of the people reciting or singing the part assigned to them, instead of delegating it to an acolyte or choir, a development that occurred in the dark ages of superstition and ignorance

                • ColdStanding

                  Dark ages? You mean the old testament times? ‘Cause after that the faithful followed in the Light of Christ, illuminated by the gifts of the indwelling Holy Spirit.

                  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                    I mean the period from the Sack of Rome by the Goths in 410 and the loss of the Classical learning to 1453 and the migration of the Greek Humanists following the Sack of Byzantium. The Dark Ages truly ended with the publication of Erasmus’s Greek NT (1517) and the Complutensian Polyglot Bible (1522) when the West recovered the pure Word of God, in the original tongues

                    • Art Deco

                      Dark Ages truly ended with the publication of Erasmus’s Greek NT

                      Refer you to the historians Philip Daileader, Angus Maddison et al.. There were three economic and demographic implosions in Europe during Late Antiquity and the Medieval period: ca. 250 ad – 650 ad; ca. 850 ad – 950 ad, and ca 1315 – 1400, with the economic nadir around 650 ad. (Stated tentatively by Daileader)

                      I take it Scholastic philosophy does not interest you. (Or the proto-universities, or Carolingian cathedral schools).

                    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                      Art Deco

                      The knowledge of Greek had all but disappeared in the West by the Sack of Rome in 410 and the death of the last Western Emperor, Romulus Augustulus in 476. St Jerome was the last Hebrew scholar the West produced. The Holy Bible was known only in translation for nearly a thousand years.

                      Apart from the Calabrian scholar, Leontius Pilatus, who died in 1366, there were no teachers of Greek in the West. His achievements include the translation of Homer and Euripides into Latin and fresh translations of Aristotle from the original. He appears to have been without successors, until the migration of scholars from Byzantium.

                      Following Erasmus’s production of the Textus Receptus of the NT, there was a rapid growth in biblical scholarship and the writings of the Greek Fathers, including many hitherto unknown in the West, began to circulate.

                      Historians frequently use “the Dark Ages” to refer to the paucity of sources for the period 476-800, but, if we take as our criterion the loss and recovery of the ancient learning, I believe my usage can be justified. The period from 1517 to today has been no less fertile in theology than in mathematics and the natural sciences, all stimulated by that recovery.

                    • Art Deco

                      but, if we take as our criterion the loss and recovery of the ancient learning, I believe my usage can be justified.

                      You are reducing European history to certain currents in and among a tiny scholarly stratum. It is not justified.

                    • Percy Gryce

                      I think you’ve forgotten Boethius and Cassiodorus in the 6/c and Jacques de Venise in the 12/c.

                    • Glenn M. Ricketts, NAS

                      But then what of William of Moerbeke, who provided quite accurate translations of Aristotle for Thomas Aquinas? And didn’t Greek sort of get rolling again when Manuel Chrysoloras arrived to teach at Florence in 1396?

                    • musicacre

                      The high middle ages (if I have to put a rough time on it, approx. 100-1300’s) was the strongest and most influential time in the Catholic Church, not to mention the centuries of great Cathedral building. How do you get dark out of that?

                    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                      Musicacre

                      “ the strongest and most influential time in the Catholic Church” – Well, that is arguable. What of the age of St Athanasius and St Cyril of Alexandria, of St Ambrose and St Augustine and St Leo? It was also the age of St Anthony and St Pachomius, of St Basil and St Benedict.

                      Were I to engage in the dangerous exercise of choosing a Golden Age of Catholicism, it would be the age of the first four General Councils (325-451) and of the Edict of Thessalonica of 380.

                    • musicacre

                      Maybe talking about a certain “golden age” of Catholicism needs to have qualifiers, perhaps there were many golden ages. I am referring to the time of the largest proportion of society where society was imbued with the deep Catholic spirit and culture, even reflected in the day-to-day work (ie: guilds) and the vast majority of Western society was part of the great Christendom. I’m not an intellectual, but I do know this is the age when the vast majority of great cathedral constructions were undertaken. It goes without saying there were many saints, reformers, great writers, scientists, etc during this time too. ( Don’t forget about Albert the great, St. Francis of Assisi, King St. Edward, the great Catholic artists and architects, etc.) Every age certainly has impressive Catholic mainstays…just look at the heroism and ingenuity of King Alfred in the 900’s. I’m not competing with someone who more knowledge than me; I’m just pointing out for the good of others like I do with my children, that there were times in the past when being a practicing Catholic was more normal than not. ( My kids find that an impressive fact.)

                      So…I’m talking numbers.

                    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                      “I am referring to the time of the largest proportion of society…”

                      It was on 27 February 380 that the whole Roman Empire became Catholic, the greatest mass conversion in the history of the Church:

                      Edict of the August Emperors Gratian, Valentinian and Theodosius to the people of Constantinople. It is our will that all the various nations [cunctos populos] which are subject to our Clemency and Moderation, shall profess that religion which was delivered to the Romans by the divine Apostle Peter, as it has been preserved by faithful tradition, and which is now professed by the Pontiff Damasus and by Peter, Bishop of Alexandria, a man of apostolic holiness…

  • djc

    As someone who prefers the Novus Ordo (celebrated reverently) I appreciate this article and confirms what I think most of us have figured out; that both forms of mass enhance each other and that there is room for all of us in the church.

    • John

      Exactly. We always have to be on our guard against accommodation with the world in the church, but let’s stop the sniping about each others’ masses.

      • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

        Sniping? How about just tolerating, as in permitting?

  • Vincent

    “Having grown up in the shadow of egregious doctrinal disobedience and liturgical neglect, they feel exiled from that tradition, and many ardently desire to return.”

    Thank you Professor Lu! Fantastic article… captures very well the yearnings for our rightful heritage.

  • publiusnj

    I too was in my early twenties when the Novus Ordo Mass took effect. I do not have a problem with the Mass in English but I do miss the huge inventory of great music in Latin which is almost never used in most masses I have attended (some cathedrals such as St. Patrick’s and Notre Dame de Paris do use Latin music somewhat more and I just love that). I do not believe the great goal of the revision–greater comprehension by the faithful of the Mass–is hurt by greater use of Latin/Greek texts of the traditional five sung parts of the Mass (Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus and Agnus Dei). On the other hand, a whole lot of great music would be used in Mass again, instead of the pretty second rate stuff we are now using.

    One piece of the traditional Latin Mass that I miss is the Introibo. It is a great way to start the Mass (“I will go to the Altar of God. To God Who gives joy to my Youth).

    And now that we do the Suscipiat in English, what contest do altar boys have to prove who is the best? I was a choir boy, but my brother was an altar boy and he used to be faster at reciting the very tough to recite Suscipiat in contests with other altar boys. The Suscipiat (which we now recite in English as “May the Lord accept….) goes: “Suscipiat Dominus sacrificium de manibus tuis ad laudem et gloriam nominis sui; ad utilitatem quoque nostram totiusque ecclesiae suae sanctae. Amen”)

    • Newark

      my parish we also -somewhat wrongly – had “speed contests” too….on the thinking that it made the Mass shorter….

      • publiusnj

        I can’t talk about the motives of others. My brother though was very religious and took the role of altar boy very seriously. It was a fun thing at a time when fun was pretty innocent.

    • stevo

      The Suscipiat – I have never memorized that one yet, after 7-8 years of attending Novus Ordo Latin Mass. I can say most other latin prayers but this one eludes me! I am putting on my list to practice now.

    • It’s not about speed though…

      • publiusnj

        Of course not.

    • musicacre

      This line you just mentioned, “I will go to the altar of God….” and several others are the very reason I was attracted to trying out the Latin Mass….I actually choked back tears and was on the verge of crying through most of my first one; (this is very recent, by the way) I had no idea how rich the language was! I was just 5 or 6 when the mass changed so I had no memory of the old one. When I followed the translation I was moved beyond words, yet the word helped me to humble myself and be more prepared to receive the great sacrament, I noticed everyone there equally absorbed in the priest leading us to God. I couldn’t go every weekend but when I could go, I felt I was entering a different world. It spoke to my heart in such an exact way it was breathtaking! I have since read an article which was shared by a link last week on another site, that explains the “intrinsic” and ” extinct” value of the two rites, both being valid. Amazing article written by Father Chad Ripperger F.S.S.P. written inthe Latin Mass Magazine called Merit of a Mass.

      When I attend our local NO mass, even though the priest goes out of his way to be respectful, I feel sad to see so many people distracted and in a hurry and waving to each other, etc. Totally different reality. It is set up more along the lines of a communion service, not a Mass.

      • publiusnj

        There certainly is great beauty in the traditional Latin Mass, but there is also great beauty in the NO Mass. One of my favorite parts of both is the recitation of the saints in the Canon of what is now called the First Eucharistic Prayer. The reason I am Catholic, though, is not because of the beauty of any parts of the Mass. It is because I want to be in communion with the Holy See of Rome. The Papacy is our assurance that we remain within Christ’s Holy Church. As Irenaeus, Bishop of Lyon said some 1834 years ago (Adversus Haereses 3:3:2): “Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say, ] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its pre- eminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the apostolical tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.”

        • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

          Beautiful commentary. Love it, as it speaks to my heart…CHRIST is at BOTH FORMS of the MASS. And, isn’t what being Catholic is all about? Btw,

        • musicacre

          I’m a little confused by your comment. I attend a mass that is serviced by FSSP. Unless JPII was not in in communion with the church, this is the valid EF Latin Mass. You missed my point; I didn’t come to the Latin strictly for beauty, I have been experiencing all the vairous licit/ and not non-licit deviations of Novus Ordo my entire life, and esp bad at my Catholic high school and in various parishes after I was married; and I can tell you that it was a bastion of hope to have more God-centered prayer and lack of recklessness and respect for the Eucharist, coming to the Latin Mass. I have NEVER ATTENDED a Mass anywhere in my life that is not in communion with the church. I could have attended a Pius X Mass years ago but I waited for the Latin Mass to come here that is approved by Rome. I have attended Novus Ordo all these years. We obviously all don’t know who we are talking to in this column but being united with the Church is the very reason I carefully homeschooled my kids. The local Catholic School had dropped religion and and was teaching the raven had created the world and cut the parents off at the knees by copying the secular push for indoctrination of explicit sexual information, etc etc. I’m not sure Why you are giving me this lesson when I have grown up children faithful to the church…you should save your conversion speech for someone who doesn’t believe. Guess I got too excited about Father Rippperger’s article which by the way points out that the Novus Ordo is equal to the Latin Mass. His very enlightening lesson however, is about how efficacious is the Latin Mass and he beautifully explains without marring either choice of Mass. I thought it would help alot of people on this comment section, since many people are at a loss for words to describe what they feel is great about the Latin mass with out getting impaled by just about everyone. You need to know that the more effort you put into something….the better the results. This “legitimate ” Latin Mass priest (from St. Gregory Academy in Nebraska) explains in great detail- so no one can be mistaken as to his intention- the differences between intrinsic and extinsic value of the two respective masses. My husband loved it, even though he attends both Masses also, and usually has no time to read these. He (my husband) used an analogy after he read it . He said what if a person said to their wife, that they’re taking her out to dinner, and she gets all gussied up, and he goes to a fast-food drive-through? Technically, he could say it was valid, (it was a date…) but how much effort did he go into it? Was it not the absolute minimal??

          • publiusnj

            I am very confused by your comment. What lesson? What conversion speech?

            My point has been that the Catholic Church offers Latin Masses and NO Masses. There is beauty in each. If you want to go to a Latin Mass, do so. I like Latin masses and would prefer to see greater use of the Latin hymns we have gathered over the millennia, but my own rule is that I ordinarily go to the parish which has jurisdiction geographically over my home because that is the church the local ordinary provides for me and he was appointed by the Pope of Rome (and, as I said, communion with the Holy See of Rome is what is important to me). If I find myself in another locale, I usually go to the nearest church (on vacation/family get-togethers, I will go to a destination church such as St. Pat’s, Notre Dame de Paris, Westminster Cathedral or St. Peter’s).

            As to popular culture analogies such as your husband devised: let me just say that I am not a Protestant who likes the beat or the lyrics of a particular “service” and picks a church on that basis (if you are not of a certain age, that is a reference to interviews on American Bandstand).Bottom line: if the Catholic Church in my town offers a Mass, I do not question its legitimacy.

  • nannon31

    Pope Francis has more experience in meeting all different Catholics than the average person in a small town and he obviously has met Latin Mass people who use it to bludgeon the NO Mass as one can see on the internet and he knows Christ said in prayer to the Father that the unity of the baptized will show the world that the Father sent the Son. Disunity stops the world from seeing that the Father sent the Son.
    This Pope, unlike his predecessors, is not going to beg anyone to please come back to us ala the SSPX yearly negotiations of the past. I suspect he is going to be quite severe if he feels the extraordinary form is causing remnant cliqueishness in too many who love the Latin Mass. The Latin Mass is good. It is the ego use it is put to that bothers this
    Pope and his first obligation is to Christ’s higher value on unity whoch again is vital in showing the world that the Father sent the
    Son.

    • nannon31

      I rest my case.

    • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

      This has to be the most idiotic post I have ever seen concerning the Latin Mass. So the pope has met “Latin Mass people” who use the mass to “bludgeon the NO Mass”? How does one bludgeon a liturgy? By trying to avoid it? By preferring something authentically Catholic and vastly more reverent? We simply want a place to go to Mass unmolested. Is that asking too much? If “the unity of the baptized will show the world that the Father sent the
      Son” and “disunity stops the world from seeing that the Father sent the Son,” then you should be adamantly opposed to the Novus Ordo, which is the very principle of the disunity in the Catholic Church. In fact, there simply is no “novus ordo missae,” but rather thousands of forms of the new Mass, each one yielding to the whims of the local bishop, celebrant, and parishioners. This is why Catholics now resemble Protestants in their ceaseless fragmentation. While you are celebrating the Pope’s new harsher attitude towards traditionalist orders, I hope you will be prepared to celebrate “communion services” presided over by deacons, nuns and laymen, because your Novus Ordo will leave you with no priests within 25 years. But at least in this, you will be in perfect “unity” with the Protestants.

      • nannon31

        I rest my case again.

        • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

          Good idea. You should rest it permanently.

          • Marcelus

            it is called omnipotence.

      • John

        This is over the top, Doc! No-one either is persecuting you. You’re skirting very close to the “I’m more catholic than thou” meme. The smoke of satan has definitely filled the nostrils of the church these last 50 years but blaming the NO won’t help. Regards

        • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

          Rubbish. To make the statement that “no one is persecuting you” merely illustrates that you have no knowledge of what Traditional Mass Catholics have been going through for the past 50 years. By the way, just how is the smoke of Satan infiltrating the Church if not through the destruction of her liturgy? Where would you place the blame? The destruction of religious orders? Seminary life? Catechesis? It’s all a seamless garment, John. And it all started 50 years ago, as you point out.

          • John O’Neill

            I remember in the post Vatican II seventies when I gathered with a small group of Orthodox Catholics who only wanted to worship God in the ancient Tridentine mass. We were treated shabbily by the local Church leaders. At one time we were allowed to use the gym in a Catholic parish school for a Sunday mass. The local bishop issued an Ukase and we were expelled and had to rent a motel meeting room for mass. Yes, the war against Catholic Traditionalists has gone on for decades. At the same time Traditional Catholics were being vilified the establishment churches were sponsoring liturgical dancers, guitar and bongo, and clown masses. Those churches eventually closed and now stand as empty “bare ruined choirs” in the midst of the American urban areas. Some of my friends start attending the Byzantine rite in the Catholic Church and others just dropped out. The vibrant Vatican I church was decimated in no time at all but the controllers still have a strangle hold on the former Catholic schools and universities. Lex orandi, lex credendi.

        • Athelstane

          Well, as I noted above, Pope Benedict XVI himself felt persecuted:

          “For fostering a true consciousness in liturgical matters, it is also important that the proscription against the form of liturgy in valid use up to 1970 should be lifted. Anyone who nowadays advocates the continuing existence of this liturgy or takes part in it is treated like a leper; all tolerance ends here. There has never been anything like this in history; in doing this we are despising and proscribing the Church’s whole past. How can one trust her present if things are that way? I must say, quite openly, that I don’t understand why so any of my episcopal brethren have to a great extent submitted to this rule of intolerance, which for no apparent reason is opposed to making the necessary inner reconciliations within the Church.”

          – God and the World: A Conversation with Peter Seewald,San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2002, 416.

          Was he just imagining it?

          Some people suggest that traditionalists are engaging in self-pity when they complain about such treatment, and that perhaps the Pope was no different. There is always that risk; if you treat people like social lepers for long enough, they might start to act that way. But I assure that the persecution has been real enough, and quite vicious. I don’t excuse some of the traditionalist attitudes (which I find occur mostly online, rather than in real life traditional parishes) out there, but they didn’t take hold in a vacuum.

          • Cardinal Burke said this past summer that the moral decay accompanied the reforms. Not that they caused the decay but that God allowed them to be simultaneous. He also mentioned that when he was a young bishop, he had to meet with priests who were bitter and angry at the re-introduction of the TLM to the Diocese of La Crosse, WI. He remained silent until the last person spoke, and then pulled out the big ones. He said, in a truly fraternal way considering he was a priest of La Crosse, “We grew up with this Mass. We served this Mass, we came to love this Mass. Why do you hate it know?” They responded with utter silence.

    • John

      Spot on! Nothing wrong with the TLM but there is a danger that some of its strongest adherents miss the wood for the trees.

      • Phil Steinacker

        John, You seem blissfully ignorant of thet treatment poured upon those who saw through the shallowness of the Novus Ordo by comparison to the Traditional Latin Mass when first introduced.

        Benedict XVI’s vision in restoring the TLM was for both forms to exist side by side, not seeking to impose the TLM on Catholics like yourself who are attached to the NO because you have no rots in understanding why the TLM is spiritualy superior to it.

        He knows it, but also realizes that to impose it on your would do the same damage that was done in reverse 50 years when the TLM was ripped out of th elives of those who understood the treasures stolen from them.

        Perhaps you’d understand the attitude you encounter among traditionalists if the NO was permanently taken from you overnight. I suspect you are clueless about the treatment received by the traditionalist community for almost 5 decaades, and lack any appreciation of how chagrining it has been to have such a poor substitute forced upon them.

        I happen to see some value and beauty in the NO, but it is rare to find a priest who understands how to bring that out. Both forms are valid and licit, but you have become too focused on the uncharitible attitudes of some trads wtih a high Internet profile. You and others like you constantly expend tremendous energy justifying the NO without demonstrating a shred of understanding of the solid substantial arguments for the superiority of the TLM.

        The proof of that is that you and nannon31 failed to refute or otherwise comment on the substantive remarks of Dr. Williams, Athelstane, Matthew Roth, and others on this thread – especially Matthew on Benedict. Funny. You apparently can’t ecven muster a snide remark about the Pope Emeritus’ concerns about the persecution of those who revere the TLM.

        Perhaps one day some of you will contribute something sensible to the discussion besides blaming traditionalists for your failure to understand the issues involved.

  • stevo

    Most Novus Ordo Masses are not even celebrated in the manner VII
    described. There is no chant, no ‘pride of place” for chant, no latin,
    priest faces the people (nothing in VII about that), no hand holding in
    VII, no extraordinary ministers at every mass, etc, etc,. The Mass
    according to VII norms has rarely even been tried in most churches in
    the U.S. The Mass was stolen from us by progressives in the church and most catholic’s don’t even know it.

    • John

      Hi Stevo. I go to a NO mass and all I can say that it is deeply respectful and orthodox (see my email above). As soon as the tambourines and holding hands come in, I’ll be off! However, I do think there is a danger that we can go the other way and get too wrapped up in liturgical molehills. God Bless

      • John

        Sorry – “wrapped up in molehills” is not a good use of English, but I think you get my point. Best wishes

        • stevo

          John, I do get your point about molehills and I agree with you. We have attended EF Masses and are somewhat surprised by the sometimes “uppity” attitude among regular attendees towards non-regulars. I have been to reverent NO Masses. The one we attend regularly (latin NO), according to a friend of mine, is celebrated in accordance with VII instructions and it is beautiful. No “innovations” and english is used at the proper times. The main thing that is good about the latin is that it is a dead language and cannot be changed by a whimsical priest or music director during Mass. It is what it is and sort of guarantees conformity in the liturgy. God bless.

          • Jim H.

            Friends, we must be cautious – especially in the push for the New Evangelization – not to scandalize the Church by unseemly comparisons of the Ordinary vs. the Extraordinary forms of the Roman Rite. Both are acceptable, and one assumes the norm is to celebrate them reverently and in accord with proper rubrics. When liturgical abuse occurs, it is proper to take these concerns up with the priest and local bishops – and NOT to let it become divisive, corrosive against Vatican 2 or the hierarchy, or chip away at reasons why someone would join the Catholic Church.

          • Madeleine

            Those embracing traditional must go out of their way to be the most charitable on many fronts!

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      There was little chant in the pre-VII rite either. Even on Sundays, churches would often have 3 or 4 Low Masses on a Sunday and one Missa Cantata

      • Glenn M.. Ricketts

        Yes, that’s what, on one reading, SC plainly intended to correct. But instead of little chant, we wound up with none at all, save in a few remotte outposts.

    • Art Deco

      Would refer you to Christopher Ferrara. His point: when you read the Conciliar documents on the liturgy like a lawyer – i.e. with an eye to what this contract allows the other guy to do to your client – you conclude that the contemporary Novus Ordo is not incongruent with those documents. He also notes that the rein given the papal Master of Ceremonies and his own public statements indicate that Bl. John Paul was at home with contemporary liturgy. (I think George Sim Johnston has contended that liturgical practice in the Diocese of Krakow indicates otherwise).

      A sociologist of religion interviewed in the Mars Hill Audio Journal offered some years ago that the most disorienting thing ecclesiastical leadership can do is muck with worship and it has knock-on effects well outside the act of worship. For one thing, it broke down a well-established and embedded sense of what worship is. Expecting the Holy See (with its limited manpower) to police liturgical practice in 3,000 dioceses worldwide is like expecting the National League’s president and staff to police sandlot baseball. When people on the ground have a ready sense of what authentic and proper worship is, they do not need policing. With the breakdown in this understanding with the New Mass, every parish adopted its own “traditions”, and these were influenced by the prevailing kultursmog.

      People who enter the Church from Anglican or Lutheran congregations are wont to comment on the wretched music (and the diva cantrix with her hand in the air). That, more than anything else, makes contemporary Catholic worship a form of penitential suffering.

      • Sid

        NIcely put, Art Deco! We’ll make a Remnant subscriber out of you yet.

      • Glenn M.. Ricketts

        Good show, Art Deco. In many ways the loss of the ordered sense of the sacred we experienced after VII mirrors the 16th century upheavals chronicled by the historian of Elizabethan England A.L. Rowse and more recently Eamon Duffy’s work, “The Stripping of the Altars.” Then as now, the reformers didn’t get it, and couldn’t understand why what had made perfect, logical, rational sense to them had largely traumatized the average worshiper. Of course, similar to their modern counterparts, they simply got angry and couldn’t fathom that human tampering with the sacred had unconscious psychological aspects that they hadn’t understood.

    • isabel Kilian

      Went to a NO Mass out of Necessity in MA! An abominable act of lunacy against God. Had to tell the priest to shut up as he was laughing and taling with the Deacon on the Altar. Wish the Old Testament applied.

    • isabel Kilian

      NO is human garbage.

      • Crisiseditor

        How you can claim to be orthodox and dismiss completely a liturgical rite of the Catholic Church is crazy. It’s one thing to protest abuse, it’s another thing to attack an approved liturgical rite wholesale.

    • isabel Kilian

      Most NO Masses are an insult to God. Let us all face and accept the truth.

  • Russell

    The celebration of Mass, whether with a clay cup in the dirt or at a great Cathedral share our greatest gifts. The difference is that by building a beautiful Cathedral and presenting a beautiful liturgy, it bcomes part of the celebration. I find the guitar Masses repellent and irreverant. A reduction, a lesser thing. If that is all we have to offer, than a celebration in binary spun out of my iPad with a dollop of flour dough and wine squeezed from a tube would not necessarily be out of order in the future. Sometimes, the Mass is served, by necessity, on the hood of a jeep; that however, should be our aspiration.

  • poetcomic1

    Dr. Allers, a devoutly Catholic psychologist, characterized inauthenticity as the fundamental trait of neurosis. The ‘new’ mass is supremely neurotic. This is not a question of legitimacy. The traditional mass and its adherents are bound to be warped as a child is hurt and warped when his parents disown him.

  • Derrick Celso

    I think the picture above is not a Mass at the Altar of the Chair, I think it is at the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. The Altar of the Chair is a freestanding altar.

    • Crisiseditor

      You are right. Good catch.

  • jcbathtub

    The Tridentine Mass is more than a fashion. It has been the main instrument in Sainting countless people. I find that within it’s practice, Heaven is the limit to where my mind can soar. The new Mass, even when said, with great reverence, doesn’t lend itself to the same affect. It seem to effectivlely prevent deep prayerfulness, comparatively speaking.

    • John

      Hi jcbathtub. I like the TLM too but go to an NO. I think it is unfair to say that there isn’t sainting going on in an NO mass too. We have too new traditionalist priests and attendances by all ages is way up. From my pew, all is see is people deeply reverential – no talking, no wandering eyes. In peace!

      • jcbathtub

        I go to Novus Ordo too, but if it was offerred locally, would go to the Traditional Mass. I did not say that the Novus Ordo Mass did not cultivate Saints. My experience though is, when participating in the old Mass, its like a slam dunk more spiritually lifting than the new Mass. We are lucky to have an orthodox priest/ pastor at our local Catholic Church too.

        • uncle max

          Suggestion: google ‘Latin Mass’ and your area, and you will find out where the closest one is. At least once a month it is worth a trip.

          • jcbathtub

            Thanks

      • Phil Steinacker

        Well, opinions on current “sainting” aside, the reality is that nearly (if not all)every saint canonized by the Church so far was spiritually formed by some form of the Traditional Latin Mass, which was not implemented at the Council of Trent as some erroneousdely suppose, but which can be verifiably traced back to the 6th century in a form we can recognize as the TLM. Prior to that we can identify many significant elements of the TLM in earlier writings going back as early as the 2nd century.

        If you mean that folks attending Mass today may gain spiritual benefit from either form, I’d agree. But it will take some lifetimes to see whether the Novus Ordo is capable of producing saints recognized by the Church in the highest manner which she can – canonization – and to the same degree.
        What I know about the difference in substance between the two forms and their music informs me the answer is no.

  • John

    Hi Prof. Lu. I like the balance you bring to this thorny point. I’m a new catholic and go to a NO here in Switzerland and have been pretty horrified at what some of the TLM catholic bloggers have to say about people like me! All I see is deeply orthodox catholics worshipping God – no clowns, no rainbow sashes, no extemporare singing or tambourines! I happen to have great respect for the TLM and would have no problems if it came to every parish, however I just wish some of its adherents would recognise that NO fold can be just as “counter-cultural” and “commited” as any TLM attendee. I wouldn’t want to be in the shoes of a traditionalist who accuses one of our parish’s 6 foot 5 local farmers of not being a true catholic! God bless

    • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

      Wow! I have lived in Switzerland myself. Sion, in fact, reputed to be the most Catholic region in the county, and it is there that I saw some of the worst abuses of the Mass that I have ever encountered anywhere. I am glad to know things have changed since the 1980s.

    • Jim H.

      John you are describing what are known as “Radical Traditionalists.” This is separate from those who merely enjoy all that Catholic tradition has to offer. When the earlier form of the Roman Rite because a matter which begins to divide the Church, and is promoted in that way – it becomes a problem. Liturgical abuse is one thing, but disregard for new Catholics, Vatican 2, and spreading scandal and conspiracy theories about the hierarchy is entirely a different matter.

  • Tony

    Thank you, Rachel!
    Let me say at the outset: we do not attend the Tridentine Mass. We attend the Novus Ordo Mass, celebrated with great reverence by our good and wise pastor. We sing hymns from perhaps the finest English hymnal ever compiled, the 1940 Hymnal (Episcopal, and more Catholic than almost any hymnal to be found in churches today). We sing four hymns at Mass, and often all of the verses, too; over the course of a year of Sundays and Holy Days, we will have sung about 150 different hymns; and we still occasionally sing a hymn we’ve never sung before. During Lent, Advent, Christmastide, and Eastertide, we sing the great prayers of the Mass in Latin.
    All that said — there are things about the Tridentine Mass that are irreplaceable and tremendously powerful. I am getting a sense of it from praying out of my St. Joseph Missal, printed in 1956. You can’t turn the Mass into Story Hour or Pizza Night when the Last Gospel awaits: In the beginning was the Word. You can’t turn it into a Sunday morning party when there are those powerful introductory prayers. You are reminded constantly of the Trinity … It all makes me wish they had just translated the Latin Mass into the vernacular, and left the rite the same, with perhaps additional opportunities for hymns during Sunday Mass. That’s all. I have no idea why they thought they had to strip away the preparatory prayers and the prayers after Mass and many of the prayers within Mass and the standard Trinitarian preface for Sundays …

    • Your last sentence is precisely why the point of departure cannot be any Ordo Missae issued after 1963…it’s too deprived of the proper Roman heritage and too much up to the celebrant’s whim.

  • droolbritannia

    Dr Lu mentions two important facts (maybe more, but these are the ones that struck me): 1) that older people do indeed wax nostalgic for what they loved in youth, and desire to return to it; and 2) that it’s younger people who are flocking to the Latin Mass. So guess what? Even if young people drop the EF at some point, they will probably ‘flock’ back to it in their nostalgic old age.

    As long as there are young people loving the Latin Mass, there will be old people who still love the Latin Mass – even if, as some might imagine, it’s only a ‘fashion’ from their youth.

    And as long as anyone loves the Latin Mass, there is clearly something to love, since love is an appropriate value-response to what is true, beautiful and good.

    My father is 96. I’ve never heard him say anything one way or another about the Latin Mass. I can’t remember the Latin Mass, though I do remember my mother making some ‘mistakes’, saying – in English – ‘And with your spirit’, for example, which I much later realized she had remembered from the English side of her old Latin-English St Joseph Missal. The Latin Mass was never mentioned when I was growing up (I was a late baby if you’re doing the math, last of six separated by 20 years). So as far as I knew, my father didn’t even remember the Latin Mass.

    Then a few years ago we were in Cracow, Poland, and went to a Polish Mass. I know the Mass in Polish, so I had my English Missal open and was pointing out where we were so my father could follow the Mass. But at a few points I was lost: some of the prayers were in Latin. My father, however, was not at all lost: suddenly he was at home! He knew the prayers and knew exactly where he was.

    That incident brought home to me more than any arguments how unifying and truly catholic (universal) the Latin Mass must have been. Though I am very involved in an English-language NO Mass in Poland, and I know it’s an important service for lots of non-Polish-speaking foreigners of many races and nationalities who find themselves in Poland, I secretly wish that there was enough time to get across the city to the Latin Mass after the English Mass ends. A longing for the Latin Mass grows in me slowly and steadily.

    And I’m middle-aged! So much for senescent nostalgia and youthful fashion.

    • musicacre

      As for your last sentence, same here! Nice story…it all points to the phenomena of what you could almost call the modern day “tower of babel”…not unifying to have exclusivity of language instead of the language of the Church. All the old people I know that attend the Latin mass are not doing it for frivolous, sentimental reasons. Why do we assume because they are old they can’t be wise? Why is it many ancient cultures consider their to be old wise and we ignore our old and dismiss them as batty? I know an 86 yr-old who still drives over the mountain just to get to the Latin Mass. It’s a big effort and he knows why he is going.

    • Phil Steinacker

      Interestingly, of all the “older” Catholics I know (I’m 64) I am the ONLY one who appreciates the TLM, but it is NOT from preference but from understanding both the substance of the older form and the structural problems and spiritual paucity of the newer form. When I came back to the Church 10 years ago after an absence of 31 years, I embraced the NO. I was glad to be home.

      But over time I discovered the thinness of that form, and when I atte3nded the TLM I suddenly realized the substance of what is missing in that form. In many ways my experience is more similar to younger people discovering the TLM described here. I have no nostalgia at all for that time in my life or for the TLM.

      Perhaps it’s different elsewhere in the U.S. but here in Maryland it is the young people who are clamoring for the TLM. If growth of the TLM depended on older people, as Dr. Lu mentioned, this whole thing will fade out in a decade or so.

      So I’d suggest skipping any mention of older folks’ nostalgia…it is virtually not there and certainly not a factor at all.

      As for me, I attend Solemn High Masses of the Anglican Use or Ordinariate. No Latin except in the singing, but I have only witnessed one NO Mass offered as reverently in the 10 years I’ve been back in the Church. I would gladly assist at Mass by that priest again. He is so very old that he celebrates the NO with the same deep reverence as he once celebrated the TLM decades ago, which he never lost. He doesn’t have too much time left, although the younger newly ordained priests are beginning to emulate his approach.

      • Glenn M. RIcketts

        Same here, Phil: I often find that it’s the “older” generation who, having come of age during the youth-cult years of the late ’60s, hang on tight to the idea that they are still the “young people” of the Church. As such, they cling to the faux “folk music” and gee-tars of that era, without a clue of irony.

  • lifeknight

    If our church is so universal, then why can’t the TLM be left alone? I personally appreciate a sense of the sacred more intensely at the TLM. If others want the LifeTeen Mass, the Polish Mass, the Vietnamese Mass, the Spanish Mass—on and on, WHY do the Traditionalists have to be denigrated by anyone, much less the Pope? Fashionable? I think not. Sacred? Yes!

    • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

      Too simple, isn’t it? We celebrate the “richness of diversity,” the great “age of the laity,” the “ecumenical spirit,” reaching out to embrace all our “separated brethren.” There is only one group that is not tolerated: those Catholics who would like to pray in the same manner as their forefathers did for centuries. No, that, and that alone, is intolerable!

      • nannon31

        But you do have your Mass. What you also want is the right to rant against the ordinary form and this Pope if he encounters too many ranters like you at the intimate level at the Vatican is going to revoke the motu proprio and the quiet Latin Mass people will suffer because of the ranters like yourself. This Pope has already moved within a religious order on this without batting an eye.

        • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

          Again, you have no idea what you are talking about. I have been involved in efforts to promote the Mass for 30 years, and I can say with confidence that only a tiny fraction of Catholics who desire the Traditional Latin Mass have access to it. As for what happened to the FFI, that shameful episode has been well documented elsewhere…

          • nannon31

            They would have access if they have sufficient people interested for their area. They don’t have that number therefore that area does not have it. That’s life.

            • Makalu

              Simply not true. In our parish we had over 50 people who wanted the Tridentine Mass and many wrote multiple letters to our bishop. We were on our own able to get a priest to come in at 12:15pm to say the mass after long negotiations w/ the pastor. Then after one year the pastor no longer supported it and our bishop refused to help and it ended.

              • nannon31

                What changed the pastor’s mind…did he say?

                • Phil Steinacker

                  Perhaps your ignorance extends to not knowing that Benedict’s motu proprio specifically denies the bishop ANY AUTHORITY to block the TLM if desired, but bishops and pastors around the world have DISOBEYED the pope by disregarding his authority, as some here are documenting for you. This has been acknowledged publically by more than one high-level Vatican official, so please don’t try to deny it.

                  You seem to relish expounding on a topic about which you have demonstrably little information.

              • musicacre

                Same kind of thing here; two successive bishops refused (after many, many years of letter-writing and petition and visits) and the 200 or more people eventually moved on, died of old age, etc, so now that there is a Latin mass it is a new group of people that is very small, and the burden to be self-sufficient is difficult! I was a young mom when it all started and now am in my 50’s. That’s how long it took to get it established.

                • John O’Neill

                  Seek out a Pius X church in the area. The traditionalists are growing in leaps while the Vatican II parishes are dying on the vine. Also check out the Byzantine and Eastern churches; their sacraments are valid and they have not been taken over by modernists and American progressives.

                  • musicacre

                    Thanks, but I was trying to say we have EF Latin Mass here now, approved and in communion with the church; it just took a long time and there were a lot of politics preventing the Latin Mass from returning. I know some lovely people who go to the Pius X Church with the best of intentions, but to use your terminology, it isn’t connected to the “vine” in an authentic way. The pope is our leader no matter how much one feels superior to him in liturgical knowledge. Christ once left Peter in charge, and those could muster the humility….followed him.

                    • John O’Neill

                      I have a very good friend who was in a religious order with me during the crazy sixties and we left with over half of the members while Vatican II was being installed. Later on my friend made a career in California and attended mass every sunday under the church of Cardinal Daniel Baloney Mahoney; one day at mass he finally just said enough and went away and found the Pius X church nearby. He asked to be admitted to the seminary even though he was in his late fifties and eventually was ordained in Australia. He now runs a parish in Idaho and is very happy. I keep in touch with him and he sends me their info magazine and I was surprised to see how well Pius X is doing in the world. They are ordaining more priests per annum than most Americanized dioceses. I see a future for the order and I do not think it just some wacky old timers weeping for lost renown.

                    • musicacre

                      I don’t think anyone is whacky who craves a respectful Mass that fulfills its purpose to sanctify souls. However, (and Christ himself created those “howevers”), we were told to be part of the flock that follows the Chair of Peter, and we can’t doubt that there will be some very trying circumstances to unhinge us from that loyalty. Feeling good and happy isn’t enough; the Mormons feel happy I’m sure not to mention the thousands of new sects popping up every day. In fact my older sister joined the Unification church decades ago, (Moonies) and now with her kids indoctrinated into it, they feel happy….and they’re growing by leaps and bounds, by the way. I don’t think that is a good test of authenticity however.

                    • musicacre

                      And by the way, I didn’t mean to be disrespectful of your friend’s experience. It is terrible to be under the jurisdiction of a confused/ or bad-intentioned bishop or Cardinal, since they are our mentors. I know so many Protestant homeschool acquaintances who always change congregations and even religions when they come into conflict or don’t like their pastor. Catholics aren’t supposed to do that….meaning sometimes we have unfaithful leadership but we can’t lose heart and let them be the excuse for us bailing.

                    • John O’Neill

                      agree with you basically that” ubi Petrus, ibi ecclesia”. oremus pro invicem.

                    • Glenn M. Ricketts

                      I agree with you and John, although I would have stuck it as you did, no judgment on him. But I think we’d all agree that it’s so very sad and incredible that things should have come to this pass.

              • jacobhalo

                Since the Motus Proprio, permission is not needed.

                • musicacre

                  Yes, but so many bishops still give a hard time.

                  • Glenn M. Ricketts

                    They sure do, as in threatening priests who are inclined to be “troublemakers” by acceding to the wishes of those who want the EF – or in my experience, even a little Latin in the OF.

                    • musicacre

                      That ‘s so shocking and scandalous….sad that it is more often than not. Makes you wonder what is going on in their head?? We need to keep all those priest in our prayers, that are trying to introduce the Latin Mass to their parish!

            • Athelstane

              I have been part of multiple petitions in different jurisdictions, one of which was signed by over 300 people – real, live, practicing resident Catholics – that were either completely ignored by a chancery, or turned down flat.

              So how many is “sufficient?” Especially if one has already lined up a priest, servers, a choir, an open time slot, and all other necessary materials?

              In far too many cases, this has not been about sufficient numbers. It is about the very real hostility and hatred by many in Church leadership for the traditional Mass celebrated by the Church until the mid-1960’s.

              Pope Benedict once spoke at some length about this opposition:

              “For fostering a true consciousness in liturgical matters, it is also important that the proscription against the form of liturgy in valid use up to 1970 should be lifted. Anyone who nowadays advocates the continuing existence of this liturgy or takes part in it is treated like a leper; all tolerance ends here. There has never been anything like this in history; in doing this we are despising and proscribing the Church’s whole past. How can one trust her present if things are that way? I must say, quite openly, that I don’t understand why so any of my episcopal brethren have to a great extent submitted to this rule of intolerance, which for no apparent reason is opposed to making the necessary inner reconciliations within the Church.”
              God and the World: A Conversation with Peter Seewald, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2002, 416.

              • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

                nannon31 has not got a clue. It’s hopeless to argue with such people.

                • nannon31

                  Doc….look at the ad hominem nature of most of your posts to me. I can’t imagine you promoting anything successfully. You’re simply one pissed off human. You’re perhaps a great doctor but human relations?…not so much.

                  • Phil Steinacker

                    Perhaps you should consider taking responsibility for provoking the responses you’re getting. Ever considered you might be worthy fo them?

                    I don’t know Dr. Williams, but I don’t see anger in his remarks. However, I can understand annoyance. You’re a typicalliberal playing the “anger” card when you are criticized when your problem is that you really can’t refute the criticism.

                    Besides, you’re the one who introduced an authentic “ad hominum” in your last sentence.

                    Why don’t you go back and hang out with your friends at the Fishwrap…now, there’s an ad hominum for you.

                • jacobhalo

                  Dr. I wish I were 20 yrs younger because we will see a large movement to the EF. Young people love it.! We have a ton of young people in our parish. We had to build an extension on our church. The NO churches are closing or they could cut the churches in half because of the sparse attendance.

              • nannon31

                Then that does surprise me because I see no opposition from NO laity on the blogs and living in a large metro area, all groups have access to what they choose simply because there’s millions of people in this area.
                It does sound like Benedict should have mandated the quorum with an exact formula mathmatically or two…one for cities, one for sparse areas.

                • Sid

                  Nannon31,
                  The Vatican’s original intention clearly was to totally and permanently abolish traditional Latin rite worship and have Novus Ordo be the sole form of worship.

                  If not for Archbishop Lefebrve and SSPX, there most likely would be no more traditional worship at this point.

                  So what would possess our Church’s leadership to want to make such a drastic decision?

                  • Isabelle101

                    There are very evil people in the Vatican. God has and will continue to overcome them with holy souls.

                • Glenn M.. Ricketts

                  That may be true, nannon31, but the laity aren’t the ones who celebrate Mass or make decisions about parish music programs.

              • Glenn M.. Ricketts

                Amen, Athelstane. I’m sure I don’t have to describe to you the reaction that passage elicits from many of those folks when you quote it to them, either.

              • Glenn M.. Ricketts

                And unfortunately, many of the same hostile bishops are very adroit at subverting Summorum Pontificum, which at least formally removed their veto. Several priests I’ve asked locally have indicated to me that, while they are sympathetic, they don’t want to risk the bishop’s displeasure and wind up with an assignment in exile. But as I’ve also posted here and elsewhere, clerical hostility to traditional worship often extends far beyond the EF. Some years ago, one local priest in my diocese refused to allow Benediction, even in an all-English version, because it bordered on “idolatry.” And anyway, he explained, isn’t Christ’s “presence in the community” sufficient? I wish I were making it up.

                • It’s funny: in my home archdiocese, the rural parishes and some of the less-affluent parishes within the city are either very beautiful and largely not tampered with after the Council or they are designed so that one can make substantial improvements to the church such as altar rails, statuary, etc.

                  • Glenn M. Ricketts, NAS

                    That doesn’t surprise me at all. I think that affluent, self-consciously “educated” suburbanites are especially drawn to “with it” liturgical styles.

                    • Tony

                      Many of the most beautiful churches in the United States were in poor parishes during the 70’s and 80’s, and so were spared the destruction — or much of it. They were too poor to afford it. St. John the Evangelist, Stamford, CT, is a case in point.

            • jacobhalo

              When it is offered in an area, the EF mass is at full capacity.

          • jacobhalo

            When I first began attending the EF at our church, about 10 years ago, there were only 2 churches in our area, one in Phila and one in S. Jersey where I live that offered the EF. Now there are 7. All full to capacity.

        • It’s startling to see this, considering the good and holy priests who for years promoted the Reform of the Reform, but now they wish their energies had been spent on the traditional books. Dom Mark Kirby, prior of Silverstream Priory, County Meath, Ireland is an example of who Dr. Williams has been describing.

        • Phil Steinacker

          Nonsense! You don’t have the first clue about what you are saying. After reading your remarks below (“That’s life.”) I can see your true colors are coming out. You are patheticaly ignorant of the facts on multiple levels, but you do have an axe to grind.

          There is every reason to believe this pope is unaware of the abuses taking place against the founder of that order.

          But people like you are the progressive version fo the resentful traditionalise who have suffered under past oppression. They are wrong to succumb to that resentment, but your attitude is just as bad.

        • Sid

          Nannon31, what precisely exactly is the purpose of the so-called ordinary form? What of value does it give us that was missing from traditional Latin rite worship? How do you justify the mentality of Archbishop Bugnini that went into the fabrication of it? Why shouldn’t those who see the superiority of traditional worship over Novus Ordo express the details of that subject?

          • musicacre

            And why was Bugnini sent into “exile” (Iran) when Paul VI finally realized what he was up to? And why did the new mass get passed even though the vast majority of cardinals voted it down? Questions that have never been satisfactorily answered. Interesting also to note that you used the word, “fabricate” which it was, almost entirely by one man not particularly seen as a liturgical expert. It was unprecedented, since the original mass that has been used to sanctify souls for centuries developed its form organically, meaning with very gradual and natural enhancements…never a trashing of one form and totally replacing it!

    • nannon31

      Name one blog that denigrates the Latin Mass. Then think to yourself the number of Latin Mass blogs that denigrate the NO.

      • ColdStanding

        Ha! Why waste time searching for blogs. Surely chanceries, bishops, cardinals, and priests are a much better evidence. I could ring up the local Redemptorist & get an earful if I was so inclined. They have just finished a “renovation”. I shudder to think of what I will find when I visit next.

      • lifeknight

        I don’t do enough blogging to keep score! I know from personal experiences and negative comments to me that the TLM is denigrated plenty! One person told me I was not “open to modern spiritual experiences” (whatever that means)! The Church is divided on the liturgical issue and we have to face it. And you are correct. This Pope is quick to act.
        And especially to speak….

      • Athelstane

        For starters, Praytellblog.

        • ColdStanding

          America magazine, the Jesuit publication.

          • Athelstane

            Well, if we’re looking also at publications, then there’s also the National Catholic Reporter, Commonweal, The Tablet, and U.S. Catholic…

            • nannon31

              I know they are liberal but do you remember them denigrating the Latin Mass itself.

              • Athelstane

                Hello nannon,

                More times than I can count.

              • Neihan

                Yes, and at least in the case of the NCR the comments of many (though not all) of their sympathetic readers are frequently fanatically hostile and vitriolic against the EF and those who value it.

                I am not including reasonable and civil critiques of the EF in that, either. Only derogatory mocking, of which there is plenty.

              • Glenn M.. Ricketts

                In all seriousness, nannon31, yes they do. And not only the traditional rite: they’re often just as hostile to celebrations of the NO in Latin, or even the use of traditional music, such as chant or polyphony. There are exceptions, of course, but I think our co-posters here are sadly on the money for the most part.

            • jacobhalo

              Traditional publications are:The Remnant, Catholic Family News, The Oxford Review.

              • Art Deco

                You neglect The Latin Mass, the finest Catholic publication of any description. New Oxford Review is congenial to Latin traditionalism but not strictly speaking within the fold. (When I read them regularly, they were promoting Eastern-rite worship more than anything else). The Wanderer has a traditionalist aspect. The Wanderer and The Remnant are issued by competing sets of collateral relatives and have since 1967 or thereabouts differed on the degree of deference to grant the papacy. The Wanderer was also promoting crankish political economy at one point. I do not think The Remnant is wont to publish on such subjects.

                • jacobhalo

                  Yes, thank you for reminding me. I do subscribe to it. It is a great publication

                • musicacre

                  When one finds the Wanderer, while trying to swim a a sea of Modernism, it is like grabbing a life raft! We were newlyweds and it gave us the insight we needed to make important decisions. Homeschooling wasn’t even being discussed yet in Canada when we found ads for it in the Wanderer, and I attribute that alone to opening my eyes and never looking back. All our six exclusively Catholic homeschooled, 4 have university educations, and I have the Wanderer people to thank for that!!

            • Glenn M.. Ricketts

              Not to mention the mainstream diocesan press, which usually simply runs with whatever appears in those publications.

        • cestusdei

          That blog does not reflect official Church teaching.

      • Phil Steinacker

        You wrongly assume the spiritual value of the two forms is identical, and therefore is a matter of personal preference.

        The notion of preference and pleasing oneself is at the heart of the problems with the Novus Ordo.

    • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

      Please….The Pope is not denigrating your desire to attend the Latin Mass. He simply stated that he felt that the older generations would have a longing for it over the young people. THIS may be true. If ANYONE, be they young, old , or anywhere in the age spectrum wishes to attend the TLM…DO SO….NO ONE IS SAYING NOT TO…wow.

      • jacobhalo

        The pope is wrong if he thinks that the older generations would have a longing for it over the young people. We, the Latin mass, have a ton of young people. I believe that the young prefer the Latin Mass.

    • Isabelle 101

      Remember, Jesus was first persecuted by His own. So it will be until the end of time. The joy of being a Traditional Catholic is knowing that I share this with our Lord. We will be hated. If you are not hated, even by your own, you are in serious spiritual trouble! Even the Pope persecutes us! What more could we possibly ask for!

  • Makalu

    The difference in liturgical forms is not merely one of preference or some emotional response to what the senses can acertain at a particular Mass. It is actually a matter of Divine Justice. A very devout priest recently explained it to some seminarians this way: ” One liturgical form is man centered, the other is God centered”. Divine Justice is due to God; hence, the Tridentine Mass which is clearly centered on the worship of God and not on satisfyong emotional sensibilities of the laity is the more just form to worship God and not man. This is not to say that the Novus Ordo is not a sacramental Mass; however, it is directed toward satisfying the emotional needs of the laity even when done in the Latin form as at St. Agnes which is mentioned in the article.
    In addition, there is the reason the Novus Ordo was created in the first place, which was to make it more acceptable to Protestants and to simplify it for the modern man’s sentiments. Both reasons have failed to Evangelize the world, and remove the center of attention from God to saisfying man. Since this innovation there has been a 85 -99% drop in vocations to all religeous orders. Children sense truth when it is before them, and their response is no fad; on the contrary, it is a movement of the Holy Spirit to enkindle their hearts.
    Why would we want to go to a Mass that has been Protestantized ??? Don’t you want to go to the same Mass that St Therese, St Bonaventure, St Gregory the great went to ???

    • poetcomic1

      Spot on. Those called to the religious orders are the church’s ‘canaries in the coal mine’ and after this utter devastation they STILL debate whether there has been a ‘discontinuity’.

    • jacobhalo

      Good post!! The NO does seem like a Protestant service. Why? because at Vatican II there were 6 Protestant ministers who were “observers” on the Liturgical committee. With ecumenism, the Catholic church has lost its identity. I’m reading a book entitled “Vatican II: An Unwritten History. A 1/3 of the book gives details of how and by who this Council came about.

    • Holly Opalenik

      Of course, you ignore the Mass that St. John Chrysostom and St. Basil the Great went to which was not in any way shape and or form Latin. Sometimes those who try to historically argue about Traditional Latin Mass forget about those other Rites. Oops. Byzantine Mass is actually more God centered than TLM, so does that make it more Divinely Just?

      • makalu

        Point well taken; however, those other rites were oriented toward the direct worship of God and in no way resemble the NO. I am close friends of one such priest who always says the Ambrosian rite in Ascona, Switzerland, and he is a TLM man all the way for the same reasons I stated above. The NO is a serious departure from any rite of the early church. I am not saying that those other rites are more God centered or not, I am comparing them to the NO. The TLM is reasonably God centered such that its comparison to the other earlier rites should be acceptable as an equal rite in reverence.

  • jacobhalo

    It seems that not only the young people, but young priests, like the EF. There are many in the seminaries who want to learn to celebrate the EF. We have a ton of young people who attend our Latin mass. We have at least 10 altar servers at mass and 20 servers at Feast Day masses.

  • ColdStanding

    I greatly encourage anyone with even the slightest inclination to be moved by the Holy Spirit, to search out some Catholic authors writing prior to VII and make the effort to read their works (OK, start with one of their works). This one is a compilation of authors writing in English, so it gives you a good taste.

    https://archive.org/details/teachingofthecat010346mbp

    Look for their names at the end of each chapter and do a search for more of their works. (Just in doing a search to confirm the link, I found two more interesting prospects, deo gratias!)

    Sophia Press has also put out several works from this time, and I do encourage you to support them. I’ve got my eye on their set of meditations (esp. now that they’ve included a translation of Bossuet)

    My point, however, is to a) encourage you, what ever your liturgical predilection (it does matter, but what to do, what to do), to go and sink your teeth into some meaty treatments of the faith and b) help spread the realization that either form of the mass will be less fruitful unless it is situated in a cycle of reading, meditation, prayer, and contemplation.

    Our Catholic heritage isn’t just the mass! The complete system includes and is centered upon the mass, but is also adorned with many other wonders. I am spoiled for reading anything else, it is dust to me.

  • anon

    Here’s what I want to say. “rad trad” evolves naturally into sedevacantism (if not theologically, then in attitude and expression) because “radical” in plain language means “I detest the NO Mass”. I have witnessed this too personally to ignore it – a traddy brother who won’t attend an NO mass said by my other brother. It is DEVISIVE PRIDE plain and simple, to REFUSE to see the good that there can be in a liturgy given to us by the Church. God permitted the NO mass to come, and I for one will praise Him for it! None of us want to forbid or diminish TLM, we just want you to stop bashing our sacraments and our worship and our priests!! As if conversions and holiness have not come from the NO, how utterly ignorant to think that! Until TLM people will give respect where it is due, and lose the arrogance, and discover the good that there is in the NO mass, then we will continue to be a fraction of the witness that we as a church COULD be. It needs to be BOTH AND, not either or.

    • Marcelus

      when faith becomes ideology someone said…

    • ColdStanding

      They are not your sacraments.

    • Athelstane

      Hello anon,

      Well, the truth is, it cuts both ways. You might be astonished at just how much deep hostility and disdain there is for the traditional Mass – or even proposals to introduce permissible rubrical options that are more traditional into the modern Roman Rite (like a little Latin, or chant, or incense, or celebration ad orientem) – among many perlates, clergy and laity, especially of…a certain generation. And the unfortunate truth is that this kind of hostility, especially by those in authority, perpetrated over many years, has made some older traditionalists here and there naturally angry and bitter.

      And it continues today. A young friend of mine heavily committed to the whole range of activities in his parish, including serving, recently asked his pastor on behalf of a large body of younger parishioners if a TLM could be celebrated if they provided everything, and was met with an unprovoked shouted tirade that left him quite shocked. Likewise, a young priest of my acquaintance tried to meet a request by a local Latin Mass group for a private Mass, and was institutionalized by his bishop for his troubles. Such stories could be multiplied at great length.

      It’s true that one can, alas, find some traditionalists that transfer their critical assessment of the modern rite to the people who attend or celebrate it. None of us know the salvific state of anyone else’s soul. And it’s important for traditionalists to bear in mind that, however impoverished theologically it might be in some respects (certainly in how it is celebrated in many places, alas) the N.O. is a valid rite promulgated by the Church, that it does make present the Eucharistic sacrifice, and that graces do flow through it.

      But I also think this attitude is more common among SSPX traditionalists than those who attend authorized TLM’s.

      • In some respects, they aren’t traditionalists if they seek the sacraments from the Society of St. Pius X who are decidedly in a difficult position with Rome.

      • musicacre

        Valid, in some cases very border-line. Less efficacious.

    • dove1

      Well, just because GOD permits something doesn’t mean He is liking it. See also, Nazi Germany. God also permitted the spread of Protestantism…doesn’t mean he likes it. Better than Islam – I’d say, maybe, probably. But remember that Jesus said, “If you do not eat my body and drink my blood….” So, is it charitable to allow people who could learn otherwise fail to get into Heaven just so they can think of us as being appreciative of them, open minded, etc.?
      What you call “utterly ignorant” – I would have you review the statistics on the Church since VII. Conversion, mass attendance, schism, heresy, loss of respect across the board.
      And the failure of the Church to oppose communism. Mary warned against all this and urged the Pope to act on the consecration of Russia before VII – when according to the pope, the “smoke of satan has entered the church.” although he, too refused to obey God in the matter. Hence, the end is upon us.
      Love ya, anyway!

  • Marcelus

    Resorting to rumors now? , sad. Working on an quote from one site?

    http://vaticaninsider.lastampa.it/en/the-vatican/detail/articolo/tradizione-rito-anitcopapa-el-papa-pope-29667/

    “On the subject of Rome’s relations with the traditionalist world, it is worth noting that Pope Francis recently sent his blessing to the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of its foundation.

    The fraternity currently has 400 members across the world (244 priests and 153 seminarists) and was founded in 1988 to welcome those who wanted to go on celebrating the Old Rite but no longer wished to follow Bishop Marcel Lefebvre after he disobeyed the Pope and ordained four new bishops without the Pope’s consensus. Last 28 October, Francis sent his blessing, pointing out that “celebrating the holy mysteries according to the Extraordinary form of the Roman Rite… contributes to a better understanding and implementation of the principles of the Second Vatican Council, remaining faithful to the living tradition of the Church.” This is according to a communiqué sent by the Apostolic Nuncio to Paris, Luigi Ventura, to the Abbot Vincent Ribeton, Superior of the French district.”

  • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

    Please …Stop with the ‘I am not obsessed with the Latin Mass tripe’…most all who dislike Pope Francis have this way of enjoying stabbing him about his words on the LATIN MASS…..DO you people not realize theer are 5 CONTINENTS ? ALL different languages spoken..AND, that MAYBE …JUST MAYBE the bulk of the worlds peoples LOVE THE MASS spoken in their homelands language. THIS was the purpose of Vatican 2s change on the language….I have noticed as well a trend, among the moaners and groaners of PF and that the huge number who are seemingly most adamant are CONVERTS to the FAITH. There are many churchs, if one takes the time to look that offer the Latin Mass …SO GO. It is just getting a little tiresome reading pieces as this. Rachel ? I AM A WOMAN who grew up from late 40s to late 60s when the change occurred. I KNOW exactly what both ARE…I love both. I WILL NOT HOWEVER make a major issue pertaining to it, or to the Holy Father. YOU have an obligation young woman to NOT TRASH the POPE..please do not say you are NOT..because by your commentary you are.

    • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

      I am as well now attending my maternal Byzantine Faith…WHICH by the way, I am doing out of love of the Rusyan background of my mother and grandmother. The Divine Litgury is exquisite. I also very much love the Roman Mass as this was my fathers rite….SO, what I am saying I LOVE THEM BOTH. If one is not happy w/the church they are in ? Move along till you find your joy. We must recognize we bring TO THE MASS what is deep inside of us in our relationship with Christ. THIS is the most important part of the MASS. DEEP contemplative love with the Creator, who is present at Mass in body, blood, and spirit. PAX

      • Vincent

        So it’s ok for you to have your heritage from the Byzantine Catholic Faith in which they only translated the divine liturgy into English but Roman Catholics have to tolerate having their heritage demolished as well as having it in English? I’m sure that you see that the theology of the Eastern Catholic Liturgy is much richer than the current Novus Ordo liturgy. Why wouldn’t you want Roman Catholics to inherit their heritage? Isn’t it wrong to deny someone spiritual goods that may help them save their soul and pass on the faith to their family? If it’s all fine and dandy why are you attending the Byzantine Liturgy and why can’t your argument for attending be the same as us who want the Tridentine Mass.

        • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

          Vincent…please knock this silly stuff off. YOU have your choice to attend a LATIN MASS anytime you wish…Stop being a whiner and baby….BTW ? ONE Liturgy is said in the Rusyan Tongue….The other Liturgy’s are said in O M G….’ENGLISH’…Seems to me you are looking for reason after reason to HIT on Pope Francis…

          • Vincent

            A whiner and baby? You call yourself a Catholic? Nice Ad Hominem attack. Please, you don’t have a strong grasp of history and how hard it was to have the latin mass preserved. Have a good lent! By the way, please leave out the caps, all of us here can read English.

    • Athelstane

      Hello Marie Ann,

      It really struck me that Rachel didn’t really say anything directly about Pope Francis – she just took a rumored comment as an opportunity to engage in a larger discussion about what what *she* finds meaningful in the traditional Mass, as a young Catholic.

      You can find traddy invective out there about the current pontiff, but it’s not on this webpage.

      JUST MAYBE the bulk of the worlds peoples LOVE THE MASS spoken in their homelands language.

      It strikes me that what Rachel is lauding is not the language – there has always been a liturgical pluralism in the Church, after all – and that is typical of most lovers of the traditional Mass that I have encountered. Rather, it’s about the actual prayers and mentality of the traditional Mass, which are a great deal more different from that of the modern Roman Rite than most people realize, and it is this which produces such a very different experience of the Mass in each form. In many ways, the switch to the vernacular was perhaps the least important change made by the liturgical reformers in the 60’s, even if it might have been the most readily recognizable to the casual eye and ear.

      • Marie Ann EstherVentura Ferenc

        I agree that the change w/Vatican 2 the languages were not the only changes….I believe we had the influx of gay men into the seminaries. THAT is a known fact in the period right after Vatican 2. THEY, in many regards, as Pastors etc made changes . This was done w/intent. As we have come to find out. The ‘Pink Mafia’…The whole purpose of the huge influx of gays into seminary was to destroy in many ways the holy and reverent . I came to notice this is some parishes.. I would question, and when not satisfied…Move ON…This was my way of handling it. As to Rachel’s comments… Okay, granted she did not attack PF…Yet there is the taking his words and seemingly being unhappy with them.Which of course is her business. No offense to Rachel personally. Sorry if that was taken that way. I just have read some of the most disrespectful HITS on PF…it has blown my mind..I have my antenna up at all times…HE, PF is NOT disavowing the Latin Mass. In the quote above it appears so, as to his reference to the older gen wishing to attend the Latin Mass….I agree many in the younger gens love the Latin. And as I stated. GO and SEEK, there are a goodly number of church’s who do offer a Latin Mass..PAX

    • Marcelus

      Marie

      This is a traditional catholic site. So most of the opinions will go in that direction. oftentimes exagerated TLM and NO Mass are valid forms of celebration anywhere.Though, there seems to be some problems with the way NO is celebrated particularly in some first world countries? (Im from S America, where NO is solemn and formal)

      There is a tendency lately to look for way to “hit” on Francis here from anywhere it seems suitable, in this case something some said the Pope said on such site,

      Incidentally, a few days ago i saw a video featuring Anglican Bishop T. Palmer where he mentions he saw BXVI call the Charismatics ” the future of the church, ” Had to check for myself

      It is beggining to look like Francis magazine instead of Crisis magazine

      Marie: expect rotweillers to come barking at you now for your comment.

      • dd

        The anti-Traditionalists make a job out of attacking a straw man.

    • dove1

      You may need to take your California pill and take a nap.
      But I will say this. Learning an hour of Latin is not too much to ask of a ten year old – of any race or continent (or don’t you believe that?). I, too, grew up with Latin Mass. But by the time we were ten, we understood the words of the mass – beginning to end. The vernacular you speak of leads to differing interpretations. Looks at some of the lousy bible re-writes we’ve seen since VII!
      Is going to church for us or for God?
      Love ya – so, as Jesus said, “Watch!”

    • Phil Steinacker

      Did you actually read Rachel’s post? She did NOT trash Pope Francis, no matter what YOU say.

      She was quite respectful of him…more respectul than you are of Rachel.

      • Marcelus

        Phil, put in context she was but…. is just , in this case, picking on a rumor to write an article and , working on the what if .It is becoming usually the case with CM, end it up with criticism towards Peter no matter if you arfe writing about the weather in Mexico.

    • dd

      Too much drama.

  • Marcelus

    As I have been able to affirm in other circumstances, the Ecclesial Movements and New Communities which blossomed after the Second Vatican Council, constitute a unique gift of the Lord and a precious resource for the life of the Church. They should be accepted with trust and valued for the various contributions they place at the service of the common benefit in an ordered and fruitful way. Your current reflection on the centrality of Christ in preaching is very interesting as well as on the importance of “Charisms in the life of the particular Church”, referring to Pauline theology, the New Testament and the experience of the Charismatic Renewal. What we learn in the New Testament on charism, which appeared as visible signs of the coming of the Holy Spirit, is not a historical event of the past, but a reality ever alive. It is the same divine Spirit, soul of the Church, that acts in every age and those mysterious and effective interventions of the Spirit are manifest in our time in a providential way. The Movements and New Communities are like an outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the Church and in contemporary society. We can, therefore, rightly say that one of the positive elements and aspects of the Community of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal is precisely their emphasis on the charisms or gifts of the Holy Spirit and their merit lies in having recalled their topicality in the Church.

    BXVI

    • ColdStanding

      Are you posting under the correct article? I’m having a difficult time relating what you say to the article. From what I can gather, your the points of your presentation would carry more weight if these new movements were so fruitful that there was no question that they are the way the H S is moving. However, it just isn’t the case and so we find ourselves having to compare results.

      You would also have more of a case if there wasn’t so much evidence around of lost souls, broken vocations, vocations unheeded, apostasy, and general confusion. Carving out a fiefdom does not a kingdom make.

      • I would say the CCR produces more questions and it just breaks down after a very short while. Others who lived through the hey-day of the movement can explain it better than I can, and people try to keep it on life support, but they do not wish to admit it.

  • juventutemDC

    “One way to find out what young traditionalists really think is to ask them.”

    We invite every reader to join us if they are ever in DC. Come pray with us! Or stay in touch via http://www.facebook.com/juventutemDC

  • Athelstane

    Young Catholics have a deep yearning to be reconnected to the rich Catholic tradition that is their rightful heritage. Having grown up in the shadow of egregious doctrinal disobedience and liturgical neglect, they feel exiled from that tradition, and many ardently desire to return.

    Well said, Rachel – and very moving.

    And it matches my own experience in discovering the traditional Mass, too.

  • brians

    Great column! “Let the ‘Amen’ sound from His people again!”

    I do love the EF, but I agree that a reverent NO, on the high altar, with Latin prayers and hymns, receiving our Lord where we should – kneeling at the rail – meets that need for beauty and reverence, and connects us to Christians of ages past.

    • That’s precisely defeating the purpose of the Novus Ordo. It is not designed for those things. It is meant to be didactic and communal before anything else. Also, the radical changes (additions, deletions, etc.) to the text and the gestures are highly problematic. Even the English translation of the Canon makes the mutilations to the gestures acutely obvious: it’s natural to extend hands at Hanc igitur and make crosses at Quam oblationem and at Unde et memores. But the rubrics don’t allow for it…

  • phranthie

    If Pope Francis did say this, as reported, I feel he might be in for a surprise when ‘the fashion’ becomes a clamorous and demanding embarrassment to him. I hope so. At the beginning of Vatican II, I was 30 and have felt dismay ever since at the changes made in those years. I have never, in company, not defended my corner against the changes to the Mass at that time. The Latin was translated into English on adjacent pages in our missals, and I can still recite some of those prayers today in Latin.
    In Scotland, where I then lived, it wasn’t just the Mass that was thoroughly protestantized to make acceptable to our ‘Separated Brethren’ in those early efforts at ecumenism. Our Catholic hymns were said to be too ‘triumphalist” and ‘naive’ and our hymn books were replaced by others which were largely Anglican in content. Many of the hymns in these new books are not theologically Catholic, and the ones we loved to sing to Our Lady — particularly during the month of May — were also omitted from this new hymnology. I believe that Our Catholic hymns were also, unquestionably, more devotional. One could go on . . .

    • Marcelus

      You hope the Pope said that?

      • phranthie

        No

  • dove1

    Among the problems I had with the Novus Ordo masses was that I stuck out when I approached the mass with piety. Humble people do not like “sticking out”. I was looked at as if to say, “Well, aren’t you special.” If we lack fear of God, we lack wisdom. He is so much more than our buddy! But being looked at with jaundiced eye is not what we want when we get home once a week!
    Now that I have returned to a Traditional Mass, I am one of the whole school of fish that all look and act pretty much the same. Not from conformity, but from reverence. We are serious about what we are presenting, not to others around us, but to God! From opening hymns to “Thanks be to God”, the whole church is quite, even though we have many small children.
    That is another thing – my church has families – mothers, fathers, and plenty of children, as well as we blue-haired and no-haired types. The Novus Ordo from which I came seemed to be mostly blue/no-haired. Most of them don’t have the respect and courtesy that our ten year olds show.
    Oh, that they would come home!

  • uncle max

    FYI – I am a musical snob and I make no apologies for it. I read about once a month on Saturday afternoons at my Novus Ordo Church, the rest of the time I go to the Latin Mass 55 miles away.

    I would rather go to a Mass with NO music than to a Mass with bad music.

    One of the new songs makes mention of ‘glad tambourines’.

    Yuck

    • Objectivetruth

      Agreed! Some of the music at Mass these days sounds like it came from a 1970’s TV show.

      • musicacre

        I think because the people who were excited about the fast new and “friendly” mass and wanted to replace legit music with “their” pop music were young then, now they are in their 60’s and 70’s and in our parish they’re the ones that want the outdated “pop” music, instead of beautiful liturgical music. We actually have separate masses and the older crowd (except for the ones who exited for the Latin Mass) stand (don’t kneel) hold hands and sing the Kumbya ya stuff. Once again it;’s already dated since it was “their” pop music at the time. The other mass which is mostly home schoolers has all the old hymns, which don’t have a best-before date on them.

  • Deacon Ed

    I don’t think that the Holy Father was actually “bashing” the TLM by any means. At least the Latin Mass is alive and doing well in West Texas. Fr. Mark Woodruff at St. Elizabeth’s in Odessa celebrates the Latin Mass every Tuesday morning…early…and the 4th Sunday of the month at 2 PM. Yesterday’s (Feb 23) Mass had a nice turnout and Fr. Mark is considering also having the monthly celebration in Midland. We have a new bishop for the Diocese of San Angelo, and he seems to highly favor the TLM!, Deo Gratias!

  • windjammer

    Read “Work of Human Hands, A Theological Critique of the Mass of Paul VI” by Anthony Cekada. It goes into excruciating detail but it is well worth the read for the information alone. Throw in It is highly readable while being very thorough, extremely well documented, footnoted, and cross referenced. It reads like a novel not like a textbook but with the info provided, it could be the latter as well. There is no guesswork in this at all. A history lesson that names names, dates, places etc based on documented facts not conjecture. Written by someone who knows the subject thoroughly but more importantly how to teach it and communicate it extremely well.

    • Balin

      Anthony Cekada is Father Anthony Cekada, former SSPX, founder of SSPV and now independent sedevacantist. I don’t know if any of this matters to people here but I figure it might for some be information worth having.

      • windjammer

        The information is just that. Information. It does not change the validity of the detailed and documented information provided in the book. Facts are facts. The truth is the truth. It is thorough and very well done. Can’t/Don’t support his personal sedevacanist position/decision but it does not change the the objective information provided. The book was written as of the First Sunday of Advent 2009, the 40th anniversary of Paul VI Mass. Interesting to note that several of the changes made in 3rd Edition Missal for Novus Ordo Mass effective November 2011 specifically addressed direct and very valid criticisms in WOHH. Evidently Rome has read it as well but surely has not gone far enough.
        It is also clear the Reform of the Reform will not work either. Cdl Burke is dead on when he says “Fix the Liturgy Fix the Church”. The Liturgy is how we pray and glorify God. It is Job1 of the Church. A small thing Not! The fact and reality is that V 2 is the triumph of Modernism (aka “The synthesis of all heresies” per Pope St Pius X encyclical on Modernism “Pascendi”) in the Church.
        The N.O. reflects the modernist liturgy and a “new theology” of being man centered rather than God Centered. Change the focus. Change the results. And the results are in after 50 years of the “Church Nice”, man centered, New Theology based on Modernism and Ecumenism. The Churches are empty in Europe and rapidly declining in the US. This did not happen in a vacuum. To believe otherwise is to be in denial and surrender the ability to correct it.

        • Balin

          True. The information is just that. Information. I merely provided information about the author you didn’t provide. I though some readers might find it helpful and useful when making their reading choices. And then again, it might not matter at all. But I thought it interesting enough to offer it. And the information is just that. Information. Right?

          • windjammer

            Si

  • sibyl

    An interesting article and discussion. Born five years after the close of Vatican II, I never knew the TLM. And although the 80’s were a terrible time, liturgically, the return of reverence (at least in my area) has been a great gift. The ordinary form is a true praise of God, even if the language is less elevated.

    My problem is that I am drawn to the EF Mass, but put off once I am there. My heart longs to participate with my voice. I’d like to say the Creed in my own language, and I’d like my 6 children to do so as well. It is good to follow along in the booklet, but better to say it by heart, I think, with all the other people. And finally, I do think some of the attraction for young people is that the EF is so different.

    Last, I do wonder about evangelism. We have what the suffering world needs. But the EF is so inaccessible, even to a person like me: well catechized, educated, married. And I’m truly and earnestly curious how the EF-goers see the post-Christian lost souls coming to Church. Would they be able to enter in? What is the traditionalists’ approach to this?

  • The thing that gets me about both sides, is that reverence doesn’t come from without, it comes from within.

    Both in the radtrad and the “Spirit of Vatican II” folks, there is entirely too much emphasis on external beauty and emotion invoking high liturgy. Give me a simple mass in near silence any day over the high liturgies of either EF or OF forms.

    Reverence should come from within oneself- it doesn’t matter what happens with anybody else at mass if you are reverent yourself.

    • ColdStanding

      Oh, Ted, reverence does not come from within. It is not a product of the self. It is a gift of the indwelling Holy Spirit. Would you have the orchestra just play the notes in their heads? I’ll hazard you’ll say “No, off course they must play their instruments.” Indeed, the Holy Spirit moving us is a literal movement of our members as His instruments. It begins with our silence and submission (docility & humility) before the Lord (I believe in the the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of Life), so that He may proceed from the Father and the Son (we are, in baptism, adopted brothers of Christ, therefore adopted Sons of God (with caveats!)). He desires to dwell within us so that He may proceed to the Father. Complex and lengthy liturgy is (meant to be) the coordinated working of the people set apart for His due Worship. When viewed in natural terms, it may look extravagant. However, magnificence is a supernatural virtue as is liberality of response.

      But, it takes practice and the establishment of virtuous habits. It isn’t everybody’s thing.

      • I play music in my head all day long, with no instruments at all. I choose to listen to the choirs of angels even in complete silence.

        Complex and lengthy is no better than simple and short, if you already have the Holy Spirit within you a sacramental is almost as good as a sacrament. The difference is superficial; and arguing about it moves us further away from reverence instead of closer to.

        • ColdStanding

          Au contrare, mon frere! A thorough-going understanding of these matters is of the utmost importance. I did not suggest that complex and lengthy was better than simple and short. Nor does it follow that if they are of equal value, then one or the other may be dispensed with.

          I would also strongly encourage you to revise your claim that a sacramental is almost as good as a sacrament. How can something blessed for service to God be as good as God Himself? That is not a superficial difference.

          May God bless you and keep you.

          • A sacrament only an outward sign of inward grace. It is possible to have the inward grace without the outward sign. It is possible to have God without the Sacrament (just a heck of a lot harder).

            • ColdStanding

              Ah, no, it is not possible. God is everywhere, but He comes to dwell with us through the sacraments. The knocking at the door of our hearts in not a metaphor. The first refers to His omnipresence, the second to His super-adding of graces to us.
              Not the same thing. Related but distinguished.

              • He knocks at every door- and graces abound in this world even where there are no sacraments, for those who are willing to let him in.

                • ColdStanding

                  Ted, Ted, Ted, give your head a shake. You are off the rails, old boy.

                  No baptism, no salvation. Baptism is a sacrament. Must be incorporated into the Body of Christ (the Anointed). Must be anointed with the Chrism of Salvation. Must have died to our sins and risen to new life. Must have gnawed on His Holy Flesh, etc., etc., etc. To suggest otherwise is to cast doubt upon the means He has provided us for our salvation.

  • Madeleine

    I am also drawn to the extraordinary form and, Deo Greatias, we have it available in my town every Sunday at a nearby parish at noon. I would go daily if it were offered.

  • John Albertson

    I agree wholeheartedly with the article, but I fear that Pope Francis might call it a Rosary-Counter,
    Fomenter of Coprophagia, Self-absorbed, Promethean neo-Pelagian, Museum
    Mummy, Liquid Christian, Leprous Courtier, Ideologue of the Logos,
    Liturgical Obsessive, Elitist, Inquisitorial Pickled Pepper-Faced
    Promoter of the Poison of Immanence.

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  • Tracy

    It’s about more than just the liturgy of the Mass. It’s about the other Sacramental rites and about orthodox teaching, too. This page lays it all out: Traditional Catholicism 101

  • Isabelle 101

    We are truly blessed not only to have a Latin Mass community but a Latin Mass only Parish in Huntsville Alabama that is growing by leaps and bounds! Don’t care what N.O. people do or think of us. I am where God wants me to be. Love my parish family, love my Pastor, love my Catholic Faith. Sorry for the infinite poverty out there but that is not my problem. The feast is overwhelming and anyone has a choice to enter! Thank God for the Latin Mass Parish where we are truly sheperded by those willing to lay down their lives for us in all that is true and beautiful and good! Can hardly believe we have been so blessed even to the point of being persecuted by our own as Jesus was.

  • Isabelle 101

    Why was my comment deleted. I am a Catholic in good standing under the Bishop of Birmingham Alabama. I am a parishoner of the Latin Rite Parish of Our Lady Help of Christians in Huntsville Alabama and had an important and very relevant message to offer in response to the artical above.

  • Isabelle 101

    I am not interested in what N.O. Catholcis think of Latin Mass Traditional Catholics think of us. We are where God wants us to be and we do not mind being hated by Liberal Catholics at all. Afterall, Jesus was first betrayed by his own and so it will be until the end of time. It is our joy to be persecuted by our own as Jesus was first betrayed by HIs own people and it conforms us to more to the body of Christ. Even the Pope has maligned us but so what! Jesus was denied by the first Pope too. We don’t mind. We love you and hope you will try to see us as your brothers and sisters in Christ even if you hate us.

  • Isabelle 101

    Why are you deleting my comments? Please have the Christian Charity to explain.

  • Isabelle 101

    Jesus was Pre Vatican II too! The Traditionalists stand with God.

  • Isabel Kilian

    Jesus was first betrayed by his own and so it will be until the end of time. The traditional Catholic is holy, obedient and knowledgeable regarding Church teaching. When I taught CCD in a NO parish the Confirmation Candidates asked me over and over again if Jesus was God. The faith was not understood in their homes, was not taught from the Pulpit and they were like sheep without a Shepherd. I did what I could for these poor lost souls. Now, by the grace of God I am in a Latin Mass Parish where only Latin is permitted. Everyone knows that Jesus is God, and they know how to worship Him in love. Don’t care what Modernist Catholics think of us as Jesus didn’t care what those who betrayed him thought.

  • Isabel Kilian

    If you refuse to print my comments, please send back my contributions to your magazine. Thank you. Above you state that you are a voice for Faithful Catholic Laity. Obviously you are not as I am a faithful Catholic Lay member of the Chruch who voiced her opinion regarding the treatment of the Latin Mass community by the Progressive Liberals in the Church.

  • Isabel Kilian

    What is your problem with holy, obedient traditional Catholics that you refuse to permit their comments regarding them and their parishes?

    • Crisiseditor

      Your paranoia is unbecoming. No one has deleted your comments, as should be obvious.

  • isabel Kilian

    Most Novus Ordo Masses are an abomination against God.

  • isabel Kilian

    The hatred for Latin Mass Catholics is extremely prevalent among NO Catholics, priests and bishops, Lets all face the truth. However, as Jesus was hated first by his own, so it will be for those who are faithful to Him even to the end of time. Glad to be faithful and hated.

    • isabel Kilian

      Just waiting for my post to disappear because of politically correct catholics who have not received the gift of Courage.

  • isabel Kilian

    NO Catholcs are simply afraid of Tradional Catholics because they see that they are obedient. joyful, knowledgeable and faithful Catholics and know that they are not.

  • isabel Kilian

    Seriously, if you are really Cathoic send back my contributions.

  • Kai Thorsen

    Off topic a bit, but relevant. Two examples of Novus Ordo “mentality” on the part of priests that I’ve experienced: I once worked at a Catholic church. The original altar had been removed. When rummaging one day through a closet that was filled with rags, cans of brass cleaner, etc., I came upon, of all things – the altar stone with relics – unceremoniously dumped there. In another incident at a different church, I went into the sacristy after Mass to speak with the priest, who was removing his vestments. I am not a deacon, just a layman, but he had no problem whatsoever handing me a ciborium full of consecrated hosts and a tabernacle key, saying, “Hey, would you put this away for me?”

  • Geri

    Thank you!
    A thought or two on this.
    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)

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