Saturday, July 07, 2007
O Beautiful Flower of Carmel, most fruitful vine, splendor of heaven, holy and singular, who brought forth the Son of God, still ever remaining a pure virgin, assist us in our necessity! O Star of the Sea, help and protect us! Show us that thou art our Mother!
(pause and mention petitions)
Recite: Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us.
But I don't think you can really thank him enough for this.
But for Joseph Ratzinger being elected Supreme Pontiff, could anyone see this happening? Who else would have had the fortitude and what T.S. Eliot and Russell Kirk have called "the moral imagination" to do this?
Maybe George Cardinal Pell or Archbishop Burke might have done the same thing. I like to think Pope Benedict has given these younger men who might succeed him one day an example to follow.
But this is more special coming from the man who is now Pope Benedict XVI. Remember, he was one of the young priest-theologians advising members of Vatican Council II himself. He saw the reforms he had much hope for hijacked and misused. He saw the spirit of the Council used as a tool of revolutionary rupture, rather than serene continuity. He had to deal with consequences of that as head of the Holy Office for so many years. And he has written with great insight and honesty about the implications of the rupture both from a theological standpoint, and from a practical standpoint.
The Holy Father has had to deal with a lot of negative reaction from the very beginning. His teaching has often been deliberately turned against him. He is derided by "progressive" elements as a reactionary. No doubt, those elements are grinding their teeth today. By tomorrow, they will be all over the editorial pages of Catholic and secular news sources, vehemently denouncing Summorum Pontificum, and scheming with allies int he hierarchy how to undermine it.
But the Holy Father has been very careful. He worded this document very tightly. He understood how a more general exhortation to be "generous" to the traditional mode of the Mass would be circumvented. So he gave very little wiggle room. This document is masterfully phrased. And the accompanying letter to bishops is brilliant in defusing opposition, while still taking away the means of opposition.
I am sure there is something he hasn't thought of, and we will see how that works out in the days, weeks, months, and years to come, but the intention is as clear as a bell.
I recall reading that the late Michael Davies had said something shortly before his death to the effect that traditional Catholics can trust Pope Benedict. Well, he has proven Davies correct. His heart and mind are all for the Church, and, in the spirit of the Good Shepherd, who goes out into the desert to find one lost sheep, he has reached out and provided good things for the serene worship of traditional Catholics.
How can we repay him? I for one will repay him by continuing to pray daily for his good health, safety, and security, for his intentions, both public and private, and for the success of his pontificate in making the Church of Christ on earth stronger.
Thank you, Holy Father!!!!!!!
Well, of course, the Devil is in the details of the implementation of this directive (and make no mistake, the Holy Father has given the bishops their marching orders!). And we will have to stay on top of how this will work out in detail. There will still be bishops who are enemies of the traditional Mass. And we have seen how well locals put into practice the suggestions, even orders, of Rome. They are going to need to be held accountable.
But there is still much to explore in the restoration of Catholic life. The last 50 years (yes, even before Vatican II) have been enormously destructive. Several generations have grown up without the slightest clue what it means to be Catholic, or about the richness of the Catholic heritage. I mean to continue with that.
And I will continue to blog on topics that interest me as I see fit. Food, the Red Sox, New England life, architecture, history, things Irish and English, and whatever tickles my fancy.
I see that I am only a couple of hundred posts from my 9,000th entry. Maybe I'll rethink my blog when I pass the 100,000th post. Maybe not.
There is no set number of parishioners that is the trigger for a traditional Mass. It doesn't have to be 30. I could easily foresee a problem in a place like Salem, with 5 Catholic churches within a mile or so of each other, where there would be 10 people in this parish, and 5 in another and 8 in another and 9 in another, and finally 15 in the last, but not 30 in any one parish, so, no traditional Mass. The way the Holy Father has worded it eliminates that problem.
Ecclesia Dei is set up as a referee between bishop and people, and as a resource for any bishops who are interested in the idea of offering a traditional Mass, but aren't sure what resources are available. We have long wanted a "Big Brother" in Rome to help us in struggles with local bishops. Now, it occurs to me, the composition of the Ecclesia Dei commission is going to be of paramount importance. If a future hostile pope loads the commission with hostile clerics, then it will be of little help. Even now, Cardinal Levada, no great friend of the traditional Mass, sits on the commission. What help can we expect from him?
The Holy Father makes it clear that all the Sacraments in the traditional mode of the Latin Rite should be available. Not just the Mass. Gosh, we even get Housel and Shrifte at life's end like our ancestors! Not just some lay chaplain, who might not even be Catholic praying over us in the hospital as we gasp out our last.
The old Mass was never abrogated. No pope has said this since 1970. True, functionaries of the Vatican have said it. But the Holy Father has made it clear.
While the bishop remains the guarantor of the orthodoxy of the liturgy in his diocese, and the letter says nothing is taken from him, in fact, he has very little discretion. He is instructed to use that discretion to support the legitimate aspirations of stable groups of laity seeking a traditional Mass in their parish. And if he proves recalcitrant, they have an appeal to Ecclesia Dei.
Bishops can still create "Latin Mass parishes," if the circumstances warrant.
The traditional Roman Breviary, as amended by Bl. John XXIII can still be used.
All in all, this is a powerful intervention by the Holy Father on behalf of traditional Catholics.
We greet this document with true joy. We are elated, and to be honest with you, my eyes are misting up as I write this. I have not felt joy like this over a development in the Church since the election of our Holy Father on April 19, 2005.
Let us all work within this framework for the good of the Church. Let us show malice towards none. Let us give praise where it is due. Let us be happy in our reaction, generous in our praise, and wise in making the best use of this gift.
Confitemini Domino. The psalmist praiseth God for his delivery from evils: putteth his whole trust in him; and foretelleth the coming of Christ. Alleluia.
1 Give praise to Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. 2 Let Israel now say that he is good: that his mercy endureth for ever. 3 Let the house of Aaron now say, that his mercy endureth for ever. 4 Let them that fear the Lord now say, that his mercy endureth for ever. 5 In my trouble I called upon the Lord: and the Lord heard me, and enlarged me.
6 The Lord is my helper, I will not fear what man can do unto me. 7 The Lord is my helper: and I will look over my enemies. 8 It is good to confide in the Lord, rather than to have confidence in man. 9 It is good to trust in the Lord, rather than to trust in princes. 10 All nations compassed me about; and in the name of the Lord I have been revenged on them.
11 Surrounding me they compassed me about: and in the name of the Lord I have been revenged on them. 12 They surrounded me like bees, and they burned like fire among thorns: and in the name of the Lord I was revenged on them. 13 Being pushed I was overturned that I might fall: but the Lord supported me. 14 The Lord is my strength and my praise: and he is become my salvation. 15 The voice of rejoicing and of salvation is in the tabernacles of the just.
16 The right hand of the Lord hath wrought strength: the right hand of the Lord hath exulted me: the right hand of the Lord hath wrought strength. 17 I shall not die, but live: and shall declare the works of the Lord. 18 The Lord chastising hath chastised me: but he hath not delivered me over to death. 19 Open ye to me the gates of justice: I will go into them, and give praise to the Lord. 20 This is the gate of the Lord, the just shall enter into it.
21 I will give glory to thee because thou hast heard me: and art become my salvation. 22 The stone which the builders rejected; the same is become the head of the corner. 23 This is the Lord's doing: and it is wonderful in our eyes. 24 This is the day which the Lord hath made: let us be glad and rejoice therein. 25 O Lord, save me: O Lord, give good success.
26 Blessed be he that cometh in the name Lord. We have blessed you out of the house of the Lord. 27 The Lord is God, and he hath shone upon us. Appoint a solemn day, with shady boughs, even to the horn of the alter. 28 Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, and I will exalt thee. I will praise thee, because thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation. 29 O praise ye the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Sed Nomini tuo da gloriam
Sed nomini tuo da gloriam.
Te, aeternum Patrem, omnis terra veneratur.
Tibi omnes Angeli, tibi caeli et universae Potestates,
Tibi Cherubim et Seraphim incessabili voce proclamant:
Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth.
Pleni sunt caeli et terra maiestatis gloriae tuae.
Te gloriosus Apostolorum chorus;
Te Prophetarum laudabilis numerus;
Te Martyrum candidatus laudat exercitus.
Te per orbem terrarum sancta confitetur Ecclesia:
Patrem immensae maiestatis,
Venerandum tuum verum et unicum Filium,
Sanctum quoque Paraclitum Spiritum.
Tu rex gloriae, Christe,
Tu Patris sempiternus es Filius.
Tu ad liberandum suscepturus hominem non horruisti virginis uterum.
Tu devicto mortis aculeo aperuisti credentibus regna caelorum.
Tu ad dexteram Dei sedes, in gloria Patris.
Iudex crederis esse venturus.
Te ergo quaesumus, tuis famulis subveni, quos pretioso sanguine redemisti!
Aeterna fac cum Sanctis tuis in gloria numerari!
Salvum fac populum tuum, Domine, et benedic hereditati tuae!
Et rege eos, et extolle illos usque in aeternum!
Per singulos dies benedicimus te
Et laudamus nomen tuum in saeculum et in saeculum saeculi.
Dignare, Domine, die isto sine peccato nos custodire!
Miserere nostri, Domine, miserere nostri!
Fiat misericordia tua, Domine, super nos, quemadmodum speravimus in te!
In te, Domine, speravi: non confundar in aeternum. Amen
regarding the Apostolic Letter
SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM [in Latin; in English]
My dear Brother Bishops,
With great trust and hope, I am consigning to you as Pastors the text of a new Apostolic Letter "Motu Proprio data" on the use of the Roman liturgy prior to the reform of 1970. The document is the fruit of much reflection, numerous consultations and prayer.
News reports and judgments made without sufficient information have created no little confusion. There have been very divergent reactions ranging from joyful acceptance to harsh opposition, about a plan whose contents were in reality unknown.
This document was most directly opposed on account of two fears, which I would like to address somewhat more closely in this letter.
In the first place, there is the fear that the document detracts from the authority of the Second Vatican Council, one of whose essential decisions – the liturgical reform – is being called into question. This fear is unfounded. In this regard, it must first be said that the Missal published by Paul VI and then republished in two subsequent editions by John Paul II, obviously is and continues to be the normal Form – the Forma ordinaria – of the Eucharistic Liturgy. The last version of the Missale Romanum prior to the Council, which was published with the authority of Pope John XXIII in 1962 and used during the Council, will now be able to be used as a Forma extraordinaria of the liturgical celebration. It is not appropriate to speak of these two versions of the Roman Missal as if they were "two Rites". Rather, it is a matter of a twofold use of one and the same rite.
As for the use of the 1962 Missal as a Forma extraordinaria of the liturgy of the Mass, I would like to draw attention to the fact that this Missal was never juridically abrogated and, consequently, in principle, was always permitted. At the time of the introduction of the new Missal, it did not seem necessary to issue specific norms for the possible use of the earlier Missal. Probably it was thought that it would be a matter of a few individual cases which would be resolved, case by case, on the local level. Afterwards, however, it soon became apparent that a good number of people remained strongly attached to this usage of the Roman Rite, which had been familiar to them from childhood. This was especially the case in countries where the liturgical movement had provided many people with a notable liturgical formation and a deep, personal familiarity with the earlier Form of the liturgical celebration. We all know that, in the movement led by Archbishop Lefebvre, fidelity to the old Missal became an external mark of identity; the reasons for the break which arose over this, however, were at a deeper level. Many people who clearly accepted the binding character of the Second Vatican Council, and were faithful to the Pope and the Bishops, nonetheless also desired to recover the form of the sacred liturgy that was dear to them. This occurred above all because in many places celebrations were not faithful to the prescriptions of the new Missal, but the latter actually was understood as authorizing or even requiring creativity, which frequently led to deformations of the liturgy which were hard to bear. I am speaking from experience, since I too lived through that period with all its hopes and its confusion. And I have seen how arbitrary deformations of the liturgy caused deep pain to individuals totally rooted in the faith of the Church.
Pope John Paul II thus felt obliged to provide, in his Motu Proprio Ecclesia Dei (2 July 1988), guidelines for the use of the 1962 Missal; that document, however, did not contain detailed prescriptions but appealed in a general way to the generous response of Bishops towards the "legitimate aspirations" of those members of the faithful who requested this usage of the Roman Rite. At the time, the Pope primarily wanted to assist the Society of Saint Pius X to recover full unity with the Successor of Peter, and sought to heal a wound experienced ever more painfully. Unfortunately this reconciliation has not yet come about. Nonetheless, a number of communities have gratefully made use of the possibilities provided by the Motu Proprio. On the other hand, difficulties remain concerning the use of the 1962 Missal outside of these groups, because of the lack of precise juridical norms, particularly because Bishops, in such cases, frequently feared that the authority of the Council would be called into question. Immediately after the Second Vatican Council it was presumed that requests for the use of the 1962 Missal would be limited to the older generation which had grown up with it, but in the meantime it has clearly been demonstrated that young persons too have discovered this liturgical form, felt its attraction and found in it a form of encounter with the Mystery of the Most Holy Eucharist, particularly suited to them. Thus the need has arisen for a clearer juridical regulation which had not been foreseen at the time of the 1988 Motu Proprio. The present Norms are also meant to free Bishops from constantly having to evaluate anew how they are to respond to various situations.
In the second place, the fear was expressed in discussions about the awaited Motu Proprio, that the possibility of a wider use of the 1962 Missal would lead to disarray or even divisions within parish communities. This fear also strikes me as quite unfounded. The use of the old Missal presupposes a certain degree of liturgical formation and some knowledge of the Latin language; neither of these is found very often. Already from these concrete presuppositions, it is clearly seen that the new Missal will certainly remain the ordinary Form of the Roman Rite, not only on account of the juridical norms, but also because of the actual situation of the communities of the faithful.
It is true that there have been exaggerations and at times social aspects unduly linked to the attitude of the faithful attached to the ancient Latin liturgical tradition. Your charity and pastoral prudence will be an incentive and guide for improving these. For that matter, the two Forms of the usage of the Roman Rite can be mutually enriching: new Saints and some of the new Prefaces can and should be inserted in the old Missal. The "Ecclesia Dei" Commission, in contact with various bodies devoted to the usus antiquior, will study the practical possibilities in this regard. The celebration of the Mass according to the Missal of Paul VI will be able to demonstrate, more powerfully than has been the case hitherto, the sacrality which attracts many people to the former usage. The most sure guarantee that the Missal of Paul VI can unite parish communities and be loved by them consists in its being celebrated with great reverence in harmony with the liturgical directives. This will bring out the spiritual richness and the theological depth of this Missal.
I now come to the positive reason which motivated my decision to issue this Motu Proprio updating that of 1988. It is a matter of coming to an interior reconciliation in the heart of the Church. Looking back over the past, to the divisions which in the course of the centuries have rent the Body of Christ, one continually has the impression that, at critical moments when divisions were coming about, not enough was done by the Church’s leaders to maintain or regain reconciliation and unity. One has the impression that omissions on the part of the Church have had their share of blame for the fact that these divisions were able to harden. This glance at the past imposes an obligation on us today: to make every effort to unable for all those who truly desire unity to remain in that unity or to attain it anew. I think of a sentence in the Second Letter to the Corinthians, where Paul writes: "Our mouth is open to you, Corinthians; our heart is wide. You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted in your own affections. In return … widen your hearts also!" (2 Cor 6:11-13). Paul was certainly speaking in another context, but his exhortation can and must touch us too, precisely on this subject. Let us generously open our hearts and make room for everything that the faith itself allows.
There is no contradiction between the two editions of the Roman Missal. In the history of the liturgy there is growth and progress, but no rupture. What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place. Needless to say, in order to experience full communion, the priests of the communities adhering to the former usage cannot, as a matter of principle, exclude celebrating according to the new books. The total exclusion of the new rite would not in fact be consistent with the recognition of its value and holiness.
In conclusion, dear Brothers, I very much wish to stress that these new norms do not in any way lessen your own authority and responsibility, either for the liturgy or for the pastoral care of your faithful. Each Bishop, in fact, is the moderator of the liturgy in his own Diocese (cf. Sacrosanctum Concilium, 22: "Sacrae Liturgiae moderatio ab Ecclesiae auctoritate unice pendet quae quidem est apud Apostolicam Sedem et, ad normam iuris, apud Episcopum").
Nothing is taken away, then, from the authority of the Bishop, whose role remains that of being watchful that all is done in peace and serenity. Should some problem arise which the parish priest cannot resolve, the local Ordinary will always be able to intervene, in full harmony, however, with all that has been laid down by the new norms of the Motu Proprio.
Furthermore, I invite you, dear Brothers, to send to the Holy See an account of your experiences, three years after this Motu Proprio has taken effect. If truly serious difficulties come to light, ways to remedy them can be sought.
Dear Brothers, with gratitude and trust, I entrust to your hearts as Pastors these pages and the norms of the Motu Proprio. Let us always be mindful of the words of the Apostle Paul addressed to the presbyters of Ephesus: "Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the Church of God which he obtained with the blood of his own Son" (Acts 20:28).
I entrust these norms to the powerful intercession of Mary, Mother of the Church, and I cordially impart my Apostolic Blessing to you, dear Brothers, to the parish priests of your dioceses, and to all the priests, your co-workers, as well as to all your faithful.
Given at Saint Peter’s, 7 July 2007
BENEDICTUS PP. XVI
OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF
GIVEN MOTU PROPRIO
[INTRODUCTION: Unofficial Vatican Information Service Translation, amended where needed]
It has been the constant concern of the Supreme Pontiffs, and up to the present time, to ensure that the Church of Christ offers a worthy worship to the Divine Majesty, 'to the praise and glory of His name,' and 'to the benefit of all His Holy Church.'
Since time immemorial it has been necessary - as it is also for the future - to maintain the principle according to which 'each particular Church must concur with the universal Church, not only as regards the doctrine of the faith and the sacramental signs, but also as regards the usages universally accepted by uninterrupted apostolic tradition, which must be observed not only to avoid errors but also to transmit the integrity of the faith, because the Church's law of prayer corresponds to her law of faith.' (1)
Among the pontiffs who showed that requisite concern, particularly outstanding is the name of St. Gregory the Great, who made every effort to ensure that the new peoples of Europe received both the Catholic faith and the treasures of worship and culture that had been accumulated by the Romans in preceding centuries. He commanded that the form of the sacred liturgy as celebrated in Rome (concerning both the Sacrifice of Mass and the Divine Office) be conserved. He took great concern to ensure the dissemination of monks and nuns who, following the Rule of St. Benedict, together with the announcement of the Gospel illustrated with their lives the wise provision of their Rule that 'nothing should be placed before the work of God.' In this way the sacred liturgy, celebrated according to the Roman use, enriched not only the faith and piety but also the culture of many peoples. It is known, in fact, that the Latin liturgy of the Church in its various forms, in each century of the Christian era, has been a spur to the spiritual life of many saints, has reinforced many peoples in the virtue of religion and fecundated their piety.
Many other Roman pontiffs, in the course of the centuries, showed particular solicitude in ensuring that the sacred liturgy accomplished this task more effectively. Outstanding among them is St. Pius V who, sustained by great pastoral zeal and following the exhortations of the Council of Trent, renewed the entire liturgy of the Church, oversaw the publication of liturgical books amended and 'renewed in accordance with the norms of the Fathers,' and provided them for the use of the Latin Church.
One of the liturgical books of the Roman rite is the Roman Missal, which developed in the city of Rome and, with the passing of the centuries, little by little took forms very similar to that it has had in recent times.
'It was towards this same goal that succeeding Roman Pontiffs directed their energies during the subsequent centuries in order to ensure that the rites and liturgical books were brought up to date and when necessary clarified. From the beginning of this century they undertook a more general reform.' (2) Thus our predecessors Clement VIII, Urban VIII, St. Pius X (3), Benedict XV, Pius XII and Blessed John XXIII all played a part.
In more recent times, Vatican Council II expressed a desire that the respectful reverence due to divine worship should be renewed and adapted to the needs of our time. Moved by this desire our predecessor, the Supreme Pontiff Paul VI, approved, in 1970, reformed and partly renewed liturgical books for the Latin Church. These, translated into the various languages of the world, were willingly accepted by bishops, priests and faithful. John Paul II amended the third typical edition of the Roman Missal. Thus Roman pontiffs have operated to ensure that 'this kind of liturgical edifice ... should again appear resplendent for its dignity and harmony.' (4)
But in some regions, no small numbers of faithful adhered and continue to adhere with great love and affection to the earlier liturgical forms. These had so deeply marked their culture and their spirit that in 1984 the Supreme Pontiff John Paul II, moved by a concern for the pastoral care of these faithful, with the special indult 'Quattuor abhinc anno," issued by the Congregation for Divine Worship, granted permission to use the Roman Missal published by Blessed John XXIII in the year 1962. Later, in the year 1988, John Paul II with the Apostolic Letter given as Motu Proprio, 'Ecclesia Dei,' exhorted bishops to make generous use of this power in favor of all the faithful who so desired.
Our predecessor John Paul II having already considered the insistent petitions of these faithful, having listened to the views of the Cardinal Fathers of the Consistory of 22 March 2006, having reflected deeply upon all aspects of the question, invoked the Holy Spirit and trusting in the help of God, with these Apostolic Letters We establish the following:
Art. 1 The Roman Missal promulgated by Paul VI is the ordinary expression of the Lex orandi (Law of prayer) of the Catholic Church of the Latin rite. Nonetheless, the Roman Missal promulgated by St. Pius V and reissued by Bl. John XXIII is to be considered as an extraordinary expression of that same Lex orandi, and must be given due honour for its venerable and ancient usage. These two expressions of the Church’s Lex orandi will in no any way lead to a division in the Church’s Lex credendi (Law of belief). They are, in fact two usages of the one Roman rite.
It is, therefore, permissible to celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass following the typical edition of the Roman Missal promulgated by Bl. John XXIII in 1962 and never abrogated, as an extraordinary form of the Liturgy of the Church. The conditions for the use of this Missal as laid down by earlier documents Quattuor abhinc annis and Ecclesia Dei, are substituted as follows:
Art. 2 In Masses celebrated without the people, each Catholic priest of the Latin rite, whether secular or regular, may use the Roman Missal published by Bl. Pope John XXIII in 1962, or the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul VI in 1970, and may do so on any day with the exception of the Easter Triduum. For such celebrations, with either one Missal or the other, the priest has no need for permission from the Apostolic See or from his Ordinary.
Art. 3 Communities of Institutes of consecrated life and of Societies of apostolic life, of either pontifical or diocesan right, wishing to celebrate Mass in accordance with the edition of the Roman Missal promulgated in 1962, for conventual or “community” celebration in their oratories, may do so. If an individual community or an entire Institute or Society wishes to undertake such celebrations often, habitually or permanently, the decision must be taken by the Superiors Major, in accordance with the law and following their own specific decrees and statutes.
Art. 4 Celebrations of Mass as mentioned above in art. 2 may – observing all the norms of law – also be attended by faithful who, of their own free will, ask to be admitted.
Art. 5 § 1 In parishes, where there is a stable group of faithful who adhere to the earlier liturgical tradition, the pastor should willingly accept their requests to celebrate the Mass according to the rite of the Roman Missal published in 1962, and ensure that the welfare of these faithful harmonises with the ordinary pastoral care of the parish, under the guidance of the bishop in accordance with canon 392, avoiding discord and favouring the unity of the whole Church.
§ 2 Celebration in accordance with the Missal of Bl. John XXIII may take place on working days; while on Sundays and feast days one such celebration may also be held.
§ 3 For faithful and priests who request it, the pastor should also allow celebrations in this extraordinary form for special circumstances such as marriages, funerals or occasional celebrations, e.g. pilgrimages.
§ 4 Priests who use the Missal of Bl. John XXIII must be qualified to do so [in good standing] and not juridically impeded.
§ 5 In churches that are not parish or conventual churches, it is the duty of the Rector of the church to grant the above permission.
Art. 6 In Masses celebrated in the presence of the people in accordance with the Missal of Bl. John XXIII, the readings may be given in the vernacular, using editions recognised by the Apostolic See.
Art. 7 If a group of lay faithful, as mentioned in art. 5 § 1, has not obtained satisfaction to their requests from the pastor, they should inform the diocesan bishop. The bishop is strongly requested to satisfy their wishes. If he cannot arrange for such celebration to take place, the matter should be referred to the Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei”.
Art. 8 A bishop who, desirous of satisfying such requests, but who for various reasons is unable to do so, may refer the problem to the Commission “Ecclesia Dei” to obtain counsel and assistance.
Art. 9 § 1 The pastor, having attentively examined all aspects, may also grant permission to use the earlier ritual for the administration of the Sacraments of Baptism, Marriage, Penance, and the Anointing of the Sick, if the good of souls would seem to require it.
§ 2 Ordinaries are given the right to celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation using the earlier Roman Pontifical, if the good of souls would seem to require it.
§ 2 Clerics ordained “in sacris constitutis” may use the Roman Breviary promulgated by Bl. John XXIII in 1962.
Art. 10 The ordinary of a particular place, if he feels it appropriate, may erect a personal parish in accordance with can. 518 for celebrations following the ancient form of the Roman rite, or appoint a chaplain, while observing all the norms of law.
Art. 11 The Pontifical Commission “Ecclesia Dei” (5) , erected by John Paul II in 1988, continues to exercise its function. Said Commission will have the form, duties and norms that the Roman Pontiff wishes to assign it.
Art. 12 This Commission, apart from the powers it enjoys, will exercise the authority of the Holy See, supervising the observance and application of these dispositions.
We order that everything We have established with these Apostolic Letters issued as Motu Proprio be considered as “established and decreed”, and to be observed from 14 September of this year, Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, whatever there may be to the contrary.
From Rome, at St. Peter’s, 7 July 2007, third year of Our Pontificate.
1. General Instruction of the Roman Missal, 3rd ed., 2002, no. 397.
2. John Paul II, Apostolic Letter "Vicesimus quintus annus," 4 December 1988, 3: AAS 81 (1989), 899.
4. St. Pius X, Apostolic Letter Motu propio data, "Abhinc duos annos," 23 October 1913: AAS 5 (1913), 449-450; cf John Paul II, Apostolic Letter "Vicesimus quintus annus," no. 3: AAS 81 (1989), 899.
5. Cf John Paul II, Apostolic Letter Motu proprio data "Ecclesia Dei," 2 July 1988, 6: AAS 80 (1988), 1498.
Friday, July 06, 2007
For traditional Catholics, that means no meat today. Actually, for all Catholics, that is what it should mean.
This story at Cornell Society For A Good Time got me thinking.
When the "end of meatless Fridays" was proclaimed back in the early 1970s, there was such a wave of "Thank God we don't have to do that anymore" that you'd think Prohibition had been repealed, not just abstaining from meat one day a week. But the story was badly distorted, and has never been corrected in practice. Meatless Fridays were not, in fact abolished.
Yet, every Catholic who isn't self-consciously traditional acts as if they were abolished.
What a shock I instill, even from other "devout" Catholics, when I tell them I don't eat meat on Fridays, and haven't for about a decade. Yes, it is something of a badge of honor in traditionalist circles to abstain from meat one day a week. That doesn't make it more or less worthwhile.
I recall an interview with Cardinal Law I read some time back (probably mid-late 1990s). The interviewer asked if he ate meat on Fridays, and was surprised that he said yes. The interviewer mentioned that many continued to abstain from meat every Friday as an act of personal penance. The Cardinal seemed taken aback that anyone would do something not required by the Church. Then he went on to excuse himself from following the example, on the grounds that, since he ate at functions, often with mixed groups, it would be "burdensome" or "impolite" to his various hosts for him to abstain from meat.
Somehow, I think that if the Cardinal/Archbishop of Boston let it be known that he did not eat meat on Fridays, no meat would be served him by anybody.
People treat this as if the Church was asking them to lop off a finger every Friday, or, as Saint Josemaria used to do, use the discipline until the walls of the room were red with blood.
Actually, though, it is a very minor penance. Think of the things you can eat: cheese pizza, filet-o-fish sandwiches, clam chowder, fruit, hummus and pita bread, foccacia and olive oil, pasta dishes, rice pilaf, and so on. It is probably harder for me, since I don't like much in the way of seafood. Yeah, I know, born and brought up in New England, and doesn't like seafood. Go figure.
It is remembering that is the key. I have forgotten a few times. It isn't mortal sin to genuinely forget. And since this form of penance is voluntary, forgetting isn't sinful, as long as you make some other act of penance. And if you are in circumstances where you don't control your meals, you are in a recognized dispensation.
The funny thing is that everyone remembers once they have already started eating!
And there is temptation. I eat breakfast early, around 5:30. Today, I ate a slightly lighter breakfast than normal, and it is now about 11:30. I'm quite hungry right now. And of course, what is running through my mind are images of Ruebens Sandwiches, nachos, beef hot dogs, Gyros, sirloin tips, chicken fingers, triple cheeseburgers, and corned beef hash. Of course, what you can't have you crave the most.
But one one said it would be easy. And temptation is what we are here to overcome, with God's help.
What the Church, yes, even the lackluster USCCB, requires is that every Catholic either abstain from meat on Friday (every Friday) or substitute some other act of penance (almsgiving or additional prayers). And believe me, it is far easier to just abstain from meat one day a week.
Are you actually doing something else to mark Friday as a penitential day? If not, stick with meatless Fridays.
It would have slipped my mind, but for Seminarian Matthew.
From the "Iron and Blood" Chancellor to coke-and-heroin-fueled gay orgies in just four generations.
God have mercy on him.
If you feel so inclined, pray for his soul.
Looking at the photos, it appears that they were able to save the Blessed Sacrament from the oratory. But goodly portions of the abbey appear to be ruined. Looks like the fire happened almost 3 months ago.
Check the website, particularly if you read French easily, to see if there is anything you can do to help out with restoration.
A controversy over "journalistic" ethics is surrounding Whispers In the Loggia's obtaining an advance copy and plastering it all over his site.
As for me, I will be content to read the full text tomorrow. It will mean another 24 hours of prayerful anticipation. But we have waited 2 years for this. Another 24 hours won't kill us.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
"The collaboration of the non-ordained faithful in the Sacred Ministry of Priest."
10. The faithful, whether religious or lay, who are authorized as extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist can distribute Communion only when there is no priest, deacon or acolyte, when the priest is impeded by illness or advanced age, or when the number of the faithful going to Communion is so large as to make the celebration of Mass excessively long. Accordingly, a reprehensible attitude is shown by those priests who, though present at the celebration, refrain from distributing Communion and leave this task to the laity.
There you are. When the priest is too old, ill, or infirm to give out Communion himself. Or when his single-handed giving out of Communion would make the Mass excessively long, say if there are more than 500 in the congregation. How often does that happen?
And even that assumes that there are no other priests assigned to the parish. In most large parishes, there is still more than one priest assigned, though nowadays some of them will be fairly elderly and enjoying "in residence" status. But they can still stand there and distribute Communion.
Even in my own post-Vatican II childhood, the priests in the parish (5 active priests then and a senior priest who came on weekends to help out) would come in and partially vest so that they could help out with Communion. There was no need for Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers.
But slowly, one or two began to work their way in. By the time I was a young adult, there would be one priest at the back of the church (the custom when I was a child was for two priests to distribute at the front, and two at the back, so that the people towards the back of the church went towards the narthex to receive), with one lay EEM, and one priest 9the celebrant) at the front of the church, with one EEM.
Now, I daresay, with only the pastor and a curate (oh, how liturgically incorrect I am: it is "Associate Pastor," or "Parochial Vicar" now!) and with Communion under Both Species all the rage, there are probably just the celebrant and 7 EEMs.
But unless the congregation is huge, or the priest is on his last legs, there should only be the priest distributing.
How many times are these little "permissions" for "pastoral reasons" from the Vatican of practices that should not be the norm turned into the de facto norm in the US. Altar girls. Communion in the hand. Communion under both species. Lack of a Crucifix in the sanctuary. Communion standing. Whole platoons of EEMs at every Mass, including the 7am Mass with 50 old codgers in the congregation.
No wonder I went trad.
My linker thingee is working again, so here is the link to Salve Regina that I wanted to put up yesterday.
Which Twentieth Century Pope Are You?
At last, the motu proprio that dares to speak its name!
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
For those men who signed the Declaration of Independence on July 2nd, 1776, the odds did not look very good. Public opinion polls, if they existed, probably would have told them that only one-third of the population favored the course upon which they were about to embark. One-third was indifferent. One-third opposed independence. The men gathered from the thirteen colonies in Philadelphia, even without polling, probably had a sense that this was the case. After all, recruitment for the Continental Army was disappointing, and there had already been more than one pro-British uprising by loyalists.
The army which would be the primary instrument of winning independence was scarcely disciplined, poorly uniformed, badly armed, and ill-supplied with food and ammunition. Pay was a promise (which, in fact, was mostly ignored 7 years later). Its generals had no experience commanding larger bodies of troops than a battalion. Many found themselves commanding troops just because of political influence in their colonies.
True, there had been some victories. Boston had been rendered untenable for the enemy, and he had evacuated it. Fort Ticonderoga had fallen to a surprise attack, and supplied the heavy artillery that had led the British to evacuate Boston. Montreal had been captured, though that invasion force had been stopped at Quebec, and even now, after being rolled back within the boundaries of New York, was building an anti-invasion fleet on Lake Champlain. The delegates in Philadelphia probably did not know it, but an enemy invasion of Charleston, SC had been averted a few days before.
But there had also been defeats. Despite inflicting heavy losses on the enemy, Bunker Hill had been captured. The attempt to capture Canada had failed miserably.
Most significant was what was coming. As the delegates debated independence, they knew that the British army that had left Boston was en route from Halifax, probably heading for New York. If their spies were accurate, that army would rendezvous with another escorted by an even larger fleet. And those troops who had failed to capture charleston were also heading to New York with a large fleet. Large numbers of British and German troops had driven the American Northern Army from Canada, and were poised to drive down Lake Champlain.
These troops who would confront their own tattered, inexperienced army were the best Europe could field. British troops who had conquered an empire just 15 years before would be joined by excellent troops from Brunswick and Hesse Cassel, Frederick the Great's best allies. The enemy was supported by professional artillerists, and by a navy that was (despite peacetime decline and corruption) still, ship-for-ship, the best in the world. Thousands of their fellow countrymen would be happy to take up arms alongside the British army. To make matters worse, the Indian nations were ready to take up arms on behalf of the King, raising the prospect of burned farms, scalped settlers, and women and children abducted into captivity among the savages.
The men in Philadelphia must have found the prospect of declaring independence a daunting task. In the next three months, the most likely outcome was that the British army would take New York, flatten their own army, and then march on Philadelphia to hang them for treason. Their property would be taken from their families. At best they would become fugitives constantly on the run from British authorities.
But the best of them had a vision for the future, and strong reasons to feel the need to break with the past. The vision was that they would govern themselves, as they actually had for the most part, until the Imperial government decided to tap America for revenue to pay for keeping the peace with the Indians. John Winthrop's vision of a city set upon a hill remained a strong one, and merged with Locke's ideas about government, and newer ideas coming from Adam Smith about how an economy ought to be allowed to develop. A unified vision of a new nation which would serve as a beacon of liberty for all nations emerged, and was in the forefront of the minds of the men in Philadelphia. They had in this synthesis of ideas and in adapting to conditions on the American frontier, become a new nationality in need of a new nation.
And yet, despite all the obstacles, it was the vision that prevailed, and not the balance of forces. It is that vision that we celebrate today. John Adams, who did more than anyone to push the cause of independence through Congress, wrote to his wife that July 2, 1776 (the day the Declaration was approved):
"...Will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the Day of Deliverence by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other from this time forward forever more."
May it always be so!
First reading of the Declaration of Independence at Boston's Old State House
Labels: American Patriotism Is Not A Sin
Nothing could be more American than watching fireworks on July 4th. Yet, for many in remote areas, this is not practical. Your town may not be putting on a display this year because of budget constraints. Or you might not be able to get to the nearest fireworks display.
It is a tradition here at Recta Ratio to link to virtual fireworks displays you can enjoy in the comfort of your own study. So turn off the lights, crank up the volume on your speakers, plug some John Phillips Sousa, some Handel Water Music and Music for the Royal Fireworks, and some Williamsburg Corps of Fifes and Drums into the CD player, pour yourself some wine, and put some more mustard on that hot dog!
I always link to Hogpainter's fireworks display. For the record, I just last year figured out that this is a guy who paints motorcycles. So "hogs" are motorcycles. Live and learn.
And try this one.
But you activate it by left-clicking the mouse within the field.
I like this one, too.
This one allows you to watch fireworks over the White House and over New York City, or at a carnival or baseball game.
This one over New York Harbor reminds me of the one 20 years ago (can it be that long?) when the Statue of Liberty was newly rehabbed and President Reagan came for the show and watched from the deck of USS Iowa.
Happy Independence Day!
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
I don't do bars, and I don't smoke inside. But I like my pipe, and I like my cigars. I'm one of those people whose pipe smoke you can detect as you walk about Boston.
Tobacco has always been an important crop here in America. The Virginia planters built beautiful estates from tobacco proceeds. Pipe smoking was all the rage in Europe from 1570 on. Pipes were the main outlet in the Colonies and in England, but the Spanish colonies and Spain herself had evolved to cigars by the middle of the 18th century.
General Israel Putnam, who was with the British Army in its attack on Cuba in the French and Indian War, brought tobacco to New England, and began the Connecticut Valley tobacco industry. Even before the Revolutionary War broke out, cigar smoking had begun in the Colonies. John Adams discovered cigars on a trip through Connecticut in 1771. And Abigail used to nag him about not smoking too many "see-gars." Cigars really took off after British officers serving in Spain under Wellington brought the habit home.
With the Cigar Boom of the 1990s, Connecticut Valley tobacco really came into its own, since it is a wonderful wrapper for cigars. But since the Cigar Boom has faded, a great part of the acreage formerly devoted to tobacco there has been sold off in reply to the amazingly lucrative New England real estate market.
John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Ulysses S. Grant, Mark Twain, Sigmund Freud, George Burns, Evelyn Waugh, Winston Churchill, Russell Kirk, and Rush Limbaugh have all been cigar smokers. C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien were pipe men (Waugh, like me, was both a cigar and a pipe smoker). Those who occasionally light up a cigar include G. K. Chesterton, Hilaire Belloc, William Bennett, Tom Clancy, William F. Buckley, Jr., and President George W. Bush.
I sympathize with the Brits who can no longer smoke in pubs.
Mark links to 10 smoking songs. I'll add one of my favorites, from Thomas D'Urfey's Pills To Purge Melanchony, which I think has a kind of Catholic flavor about human nature. I don't think the song condemns tobacco smoking, but instead uses it as an allegory about man. It recognizes that civilized smoking is a contemplative thing, something to keep the hands and mouth busy, while the mind mulls the problems of the universe:
Tobacco's but an Indian weed,
Grows green in the morn, cut down at eve;
It shows our decay,
We are but clay;
Think of this when you take tobacco!
The pipe that is so lily white,
Wherein so many take delight,
It's broken with a touch,
Man's life is such;
Think of this when you take tobacco!
The pipe that is so foul within,
It shows man's soul is stained with sin;
It doth require
To be purred with fire;
Think of this when you take tobacco!
The dust that from the pipe doth fall,
It shows we are nothing but dust at all;
For we came from the dust,
And return we must;
Think of this when you take tobacco!
The ashes that are left behind,
Do serve to put us all in mind
That unto dust
Return we must;
Think of this when you take tobacco!
The smoke that does so high ascend,
Shows that man's life must have an end;
The vapour's gone,
Man's life is done;
Think of this and take tobacco!
A Memento Mori in song!!!!
Peace between the two modes of the Latin Rite implies some concession on each side. I have made no secret of the fact that I dislike the moving around of traditional saints' feasts in the new calendar, except in a few instances (the Immaculate Heart from August 22nd to the Saturday following the Feast of the Sacred Heart, and St. Monica to the day before her son's feast).
But today is the feast of St. Thomas the Apostle in the New Calendar. And I feel as if I would be slighting one of my dear patrons if I let the normative mode of the Latin Rite's celebration slip by unnoticed, just because I prefer to celebrate him on his old feast in December.
St. Thomas was a Jew, called to be one of the twelve Apostles. He was a dedicated but impetuous follower of Christ. When Jesus said He was returning to Judea to visit His sick friend Lazarus, Thomas immediately exhorted the other Apostles to accompany Him on the trip which involved certain danger and possible death because of the mounting hostility of the authorities.
At the Last Supper, when Christ told His Apostles that He was going to prepare a place for them to which they also might come because they knew both the place and the way, Thomas pleaded that they did not understand and received the beautiful assurance that Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
But St. Thomas is best known for his role in verifying the Resurrection of his Master. Thomas' unwillingness to believe that the other Apostles had seen their risen Lord on the first Easter Sunday merited for him the title of "Doubting Thomas." Eight days later, on Christ's second apparition, Thomas was gently rebuked for his scepticism and furnished with the evidence he had demanded - seeing in Christ's hands the point of the nails and putting his fingers in the place of the nails and his hand into His side. At this, St. Thomas became convinced of the truth of the Resurrection and exclaimed: "My Lord and My God," thus making a public Profession of Faith in the Divinity of Jesus.
St. Thomas is also mentioned as being present at another Resurrection appearance of Jesus - at Lake Tiberias when a miraculous catch of fish occurred. This is all that we know about St. Thomas from the New Testament.
Tradition says that at the dispersal of the Apostles after Pentecost this saint was sent to evangelize the Parthians, Medes, and Persians; he ultimately reached India, carrying the Faith to the Malabar coast, which still boasts a large native population calling themselves "Christians of St. Thomas." He capped his life by shedding his blood for his Master, speared to death at a place called Calamine. His feast day is July 3rd and he is the patron of architects.
From Catholic On Line
I would just add that the silent ejaculation traditionally prayed by the laity at the moment of the consecration of the Host is in St. Thomas' own words, "My Lord and my God." ("Remember, O Lord, Thy creature whom Thou has redeemed by Thy Most Precious Blood," traditionally silently prayed at the moment of the consecration of the Chalice, is from St. Ambrose's Communion Prayer).
Monday, July 02, 2007
Sad because we here in Boston are going to be saddled with this relic of the 1960s for a long time to come (unless the legal heat gets so bad in Los Angeles that Cardinal Mahony goes down in a big huge fireball and someone is needed to straighten out affairs in the Archdiocese of Angels: I can always hope, can't I?).
Far better pens than mine have deservedly taken the Cardinal to the woodshed.
My soul doth magnify the Lord,
And my spirit rejoiceth in God my Savior.
For He hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden,
For behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
For He who is mighty hath done great things for me, and holy is His Name.
And His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation.
He hath shown strength with His arm:
He hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their hearts.
He hath pulled down the mighty from their thrones,
And hath exalted those of low degree.
He hath filled the hungry with good things;
And the rich He has sent, empty, away.
He hath helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy;
As He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to His posterity forever.
Sunday, July 01, 2007
Litany of the Most Precious Blood
V/ Lord, have mercy.
R/ Lord, have mercy.
V/ Christ, have mercy.
R/ Christ, have mercy.
V/ Lord, have mercy.
R/ Lord, have mercy.
V/ Jesus, hear us.
R/ Jesus, graciously hear us.
V/ God, the Father of Heaven,
R/ have mercy on us.
V/ God, the Son, Redeemer of the world,
R/ have mercy on us.
V/ God, the Holy Ghost,
R/ have mercy on us.
V/ Holy Trinity, One God,
R/ have mercy on us.
R/ for ff: save us.
Blood of Christ, only-begotten Son of the Eternal Father,
Blood of Christ, Incarnate Word of God,
Blood of Christ, of the New and Eternal Testament,
Blood of Christ, falling upon the earth in Thy Agony,
Blood of Christ, shed profusely in Thy Scourging,
Blood of Christ, flowing forth in Thy Crowning with Thorns,
Blood of Christ, poured out on the Cross,
Blood of Christ, price of our salvation,
Blood of Christ, without which there is no forgiveness.
Blood of Christ, Eucharistic drink and refreshment of souls,
Blood of Christ, stream of mercy,
Blood of Christ, victor over demons,
Blood of Christ, courage of Martyrs,
Blood of Christ, strength of Confessors,
Blood of Christ, bringing forth Virgins,
Blood of Christ, help of those in peril,
Blood of Christ, relief of the burdened,
Blood of Christ, solace in sorrow,
Blood of Christ, hope of the penitent,
Blood of Christ, consolation of the dying,
Blood of Christ, peace and tenderness of hearts,
Blood of Christ, pledge of eternal life,
Blood of Christ, freeing souls from purgatory,
Blood of Christ, most worthy of all glory and honor,
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world.
R/ spare us, O Lord
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world,
R/ graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world,
R/ have mercy on us.
Thou hast redeemed us, O Lord, in Thy Blood.
R/ And made us, for our God, a kingdom.
Let us pray:
Almighty and eternal God, Thou hast appointed Thine only-begotten Son the Redeemer of the world, and willed to be appeased by His Blood. Grant we beseech Thee, that we may worthily adore this price of our salvation, and through its power be safeguarded from the evils of the present life, so that we may rejoice in its fruits forever in heaven. Through the same Christ our Lord.
Crane's Beach, Ipswich, MA
Important feasts celebrated during July include:
July 1st The Most Precious Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ
July 2nd Traditional date for the Visitation
July 3rd St. Thomas, whose feast was formerly in December,
July 4th Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati
July 6th St. Maria Goretti
July 9th Martyrs of Gorkum and Bl. Rose Hawthorne Lathrop
July 11th St. Benedict
July 16th Our Lady of Mount Carmel
July 17th Carmelite Martyrs of Compiegne
July 22nd St. Mary Magdalene
July 24th St. Thomas a Kempis
July 25th St. James the Greater
July 26th SS. Anne and Joachim
July 29th St. Martha
July 31st St. Ignatius of Loyola
The monthly dedication for July is to the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
July is entirely part of the season after Pentecost. There are no embertides in July.
The published prayer intentions of our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI for the month of July, 2007 are:
That all citizens, individually and in groups, may be enabled to participate actively in the life and management of the common good.
That, aware of their own missionary duty, all Christians may actively help all those engaged in the evangelization of peoples.