Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Bergoglio’s Court Liturgist Explains His Hatred for Traditional Mass

According to Pope Francis' "house liturgist", communities and believers are following pure deception because they are subject to an error in thinking.

On the sidelines of a conference on the priest Don Primo Mazzolari that took place last weekend in Bozzolo, northern Italy, an interview on the traditional website Messa in Latino with the liturgist Andrea Grillo, a declared enemy of the traditional Rite, was possible.  Although people disagreed with Grillo on “almost everything” about liturgical questions, they always appreciated his “brutal openness”: “At least he speaks plainly,” said Messa in Latino.  The interview comes at a moment of heightened unrest as rumors of another, now “definitive” thumbscrew against the traditional Rite are circulating.  Grillo doesn't say anything about that.  The interview provides an interesting and very direct insight into the mind of one of the tradition's most vocal opponents.  Grillo, professor of sacramental theology and philosophy of religion at the Pontifical Athenaeum of Sant'Anselmo in Rome and of liturgy at the Liturgical Institute of the Abbey of Santa Giustina in Padua, has been at war for years against the traditional rite and the communities and believers in the Church who adhere to it.  Above all, the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum by Benedict XVI made Grillo angry in  2007.  From then on, he made it his mission to combat it with the aim of abolishing it.  He has access to Santa Marta in the current pontificate and is considered Pope Francis' “house liturgist”.  Grillo had already called for “restricting” access to the traditional rite in 2019, which became reality two years later with the Motu proprio Traditionis custodes.  Here is the full text of the interview:


 Messa in Latino: Why, at least it seems to us, is it that the traditionalists loyal to Rome (like so many other lay movements) do not want to be given freedom in the Catholic Church at any price and that they are just believers who need to be re-educated?

Andrea Grillo: The first question contains numerous inaccuracies that undermine the actual meaning of the question.  I will try to explain them in turn.  Those you describe as “traditionalists loyal to Rome” are actually people who, for various reasons, are not in a relationship of loyalty to Rome, but rather in opposition.  The element of contrast concerns not simply a “ritual form” but a way of understanding relationships within and without the Church.  Everything begins with the misunderstanding caused (in good faith, but with a completely wrong judgment) by the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, which introduced a “ritual parallelism” (between Novus Ordo and Vetus Ordo) that is neither justified, systematic nor practical: It is not theologically sound and leads to greater divisions than previously existed.  The idea of ​​“loyalty to Rome” must be questioned: to be loyal to Rome, one must acquire a “ritual language” that corresponds to what Rome has collectively established.  You are not faithful if you have one foot in two shoes.  It is the achievement of Traditionis custodis to have pointed out this contradiction, which restores the one valid Lex orandi for the entire Catholic Church.  If someone tells me that he is simultaneously faithful to the Novus Ordo and the Vetus Ordo, I answer that he has not understood what tradition means, in which there is a legitimate and surmountable progress that is irreversible.

Messa in latino: Are you of the opinion that after the Paris-Chartres pilgrimage in 2024 (18,000 people, average age 25 years, diocesan bishops, a cardinal of the Holy Roman Church, extensive media coverage) the Church now also has pastoral care for the “traditional”  charism should reflect (like other movements that have emerged since the Second Vatican Council) or can it continue to deny the massive vitality of the ancient liturgy?

Andrea Grillo: What are 18,000 people compared to the great mass of the Catholic Church?  Little more than a cult that sees infidelity as salvation, often combined with moral, political and customary positions that are completely questionable.  Things don't get better by changing the words.  Tradition and traditionalism should not be equated.  Traditionalism is not “one of many movements” (although it has some similar features to some of the more fundamentalist movements that have been unduly favored over the past 40 years), but a form of “denial of the Second Vatican Council” that exists within  the Church experience can only be severely hindered.  The Church is not a “club of notaries or lawyers” who cultivate their aesthetic passions or plan to exploit the Church as “the most famous museum.”

Prof. Andrea Grillo, whose radical expression of liturgical reform and a spearhead in the war against the traditional rite that he himself declared

Messa in latino: How is it that, in your opinion, especially in the Anglophone and Francophone areas, the number of believers, seminarians, converts, financial support and large families in the traditionalist area is increasing significantly, in the face of an obvious and serious qualitative and quantitative  crisis of the Novus Ordo communities, at least in the Western world?

Andrea Grillo: We are dealing with a distortion of perspective.  Faith, particularly in the Western world, is in a crisis that began more than a century ago and has accelerated dramatically over the past 50 years.  But the crisis will not be solved by restoring the “society of honor” way of life.  It is not the “Capa Magne” or the “dead languages” that give strength to faith.  They only reinforce identity bonds, forms of fundamentalism and intransigence that are no longer those of 100 years ago, but take on unprecedented manifestations in which, with the maximum of postmodern life, one adopts a "Catholic" identity where “Catholic” is merely an idealized label.  This is not an ecclesiastical or spiritual phenomenon, but rather a phenomenon of customs and ways of life that has little to do with the authentic tradition of the Catholic Church.

Messa in latino: In this situation of lack of seminarians and young believers, why do you think the Holy Father Francis sees - at least apparently - only the traditionalist believers (who pray "cum Papa nostro Francisco" and are increasing in number) as enemies?

Andrea Grillo: First of all, the “lack of seminarians” and the “flight of young people” is not just a negative fact: it is the sign of a test that is necessary for the entire Church.  The “simple” solutions (let us fill the traditionalist seminaries with militarized young men following the example of the presbyters of the 17th or 18th centuries) are just illusions, the costs of which must primarily be borne by those affected.  They do not lead to a life of faith, but often to great resentment and personal hardening.  I would not worry that Pope Francis would perceives this as a danger.  What worried me was that his predecessors saw this as an advantage.  Nostalgia is never an advantage, even when it leads you to believe that the Church has nothing to reform but only finds all the answers in the past.  When one prays 'una cum papa', one cannot do so just as chatter, but must above all share with the Church and the Pope the one valid Ordo.  Otherwise you just chatter, but live contrary to tradition.

Messa in latino: Is it possible that a ritual form that was the “normative” of the Catholic Church for a very long time now no longer has a place alongside so many other rites of the Catholic Church, among others?  The Mozarabic, Ambrosian, Chaldean, St.  John Chrysostom, Armenian etc.?  Why should a traditional charism not coexist in the great diversity of Church charisms?  “We must not be afraid of the diversity of charisms in the Church.  On the contrary, we should rejoice in living this diversity,” said Francis in 2024.

Andrea Grillo: Here too there is a pretty serious misunderstanding in the question.  On the other hand, I recognize that your question resonates with one of the strongest (and least justifiable) motivations that characterized the period (of Summorum Pontificum), to which you are so attached that you have almost made it your banner.  At the heart of this document was an argument that said: “What was sacred to past generations cannot but be sacred to present generations.”  Where does this principle come from?  Not from theology, but from nostalgic feelings about the past.  Such a principle tends to fixate the Church on its past.  Not on the 'depositum fidei', but on the appearance that it took on at a certain time, as if it were final.  The fact that there have been ritual forms throughout history that have been recognized in their “otherness” depends on the “specific” tradition of the places or the orders.  But no one could ever have imagined that on a universal level anyone would be free to remain in a version of the Roman Rite or in the version that had been superseded by a general reform.  And one cannot use the great Pauline ideas so shamelessly “from the right”: the freedom of the charisms cannot be understood as a breeding ground for “anarchy from above,” as the implementation of the Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum did in an irresponsible manner.  It would have been much better to work “at one table” so that everyone could contribute to enriching “the only ritual form that exists.”  Relying on mutual improvement between Novus Ordo and Vetus Ordo was a wholly inadequate strategy and theology fueled by ideological abstraction.

Messa in latino: You have expressed strong criticism of the traditional liturgy.  Do you think that the believers who favor it also have the right to make similar criticisms of the liturgical reform, or do you think that the critical analysis of the liturgy can only take place in the spirit of the theological current of which you are the leading representative? 

Andrea Grillo: I don’t think in terms of “factions” or “parties”.  I'm just trying to read the tradition and discover what we can do and what we're not allowed to do.  Everyone can critically examine any part of the tradition.  I'm interested in the fact that this discussion takes place with arguments.  The traditionalists' arguments are weak because they deny tradition in what best qualifies it: namely, its service to change.  Those who question liturgical reform have every right to express themselves, but they cannot expect their arguments to be self-validating.  So you can e.g.  B. from the criticism of the “reform of Holy Week” one cannot derive the right to resort to the rites before “every reform” of the Triduum, i.e.  the rites before the 50s of the 20th century.  Anyone who acts like this does not contribute to the ecclesiastical debate, but rather places themselves objectively outside the Catholic tradition, and no matter how much “loyalty to the Pope” is emphasized, this is actually denied.  It is not so easy to avoid becoming “sedavacantist,” and indeed even before the declaration.

 Messa in latino: One last question.  We believe that liturgical reform as a whole has failed, as can be seen in the empty seminaries and churches, merged parishes and diocese, etc., and that it has contributed to the crisis of the Church.  We also think that in order to defend them, one tries to present as expected results what seems to us to be negative consequences.  How would you try to change our minds?

Andrea Grillo: There are cases in theological and liturgical debate where the use of arguments is doomed to failure.  I never give up - I wouldn't be a theologian if I didn't have faith in arguments - but I understand the difficulty.  In these cases I use arguments that are often difficult to understand.  Even the well-known journalist Messori has often made the same mistake as you.  You say: “The liturgical reform has failed,” and you argue in numbers.  They think like this: If something in history comes before something else, then what comes before is the cause of what comes after.  So it is not difficult to believe that responsibility for the abuses of the 70s, 80s and 90s until 2024 lies with the Second Vatican Council and in particular with the liturgical reform.  However, this argument is not historically based.  The Church crisis largely precedes the emergence of the liturgical movement: Guéranger and Rosmini spoke of a “liturgical crisis” as early as 1830–40.  Festugière says at the beginning of the 20th century: “No one knows what celebration is anymore”… but not only do you ignore all this, you tend to simplify things and think that “if the reform had not taken place”,  we would still be in the church of the 50s.  [Who really believes this?] There is an error in reasoning here that results from an overly superficial analysis of the relationship between ecclesiastical and ritual form.  To change your mind, we should first think about the relationship between liturgy and ecclesiastical experience.  Following Christ does not mean joining a high society club [So insulting. I guess we all can’t meet with abortion promoting politicians, Masonic journos and intellectuals like Bergoglio does]  or association, speaking a foreign language, or identifying with the past by cultivating reactionary ideals.  Tradition is not the past, but the future.  Since the Church and faith are serious matters, they cannot be reduced to the association of those who cultivate a nostalgia for the past.

 Introduction/Translation: Giuseppe Nardi

 Image: MiL

Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.Com



Anonymous said...

A great example of a theologian who received his Minor Degree in running off at the mouth.
He LOVES hearing himself speak.
Reminds me of Henri Nouwen who I heard speak once back in the 1970's.
I was a minority in the audience, who after one hour of his non-stop chatter, wanted to stand up and say, "please shut up".

Anonymous said...

Masonic drivel from a Clown World High Priest "Festugière says at the beginning of the 20th century: “No one knows what celebration is anymore” See I'm a smart boy, that's where all the Church's started!

Anonymous said...

Masonic drivel from a Clown World High Priest: "Festugière says at the beginning of the 20th century: “No one knows what celebration is anymore” See I'm a smart boy, this where all the problems in the Church started! Only I can know this esoteric secret!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'm a Vatican 2 denier. My salvation requires it. So there's that.

Anonymous said...

Probably a homo. They are the nastiest, most miserable, hateful demons on the face of the earth.

Anonymous said...

Whatever's inside always manifests on the outside. They're all such miserable, wretched, dead-eyed, sinister-looking people.

Anonymous said...

One look at his face tells everything