Showing posts with label Liturgy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Liturgy. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Traditiones Custodes: The Hermeneutic of Arbitrariness


On February 4, Pope Francis received two priests from the Society of St. Peter who were able to express their concerns about the implementation of Traditionis Custodes. On February 11, he granted the Society of St. Peter a special decree on Traditionis Custodes.

Argentine blogger Wanderer, “ a traditional Catholic in unity with Rome,” has been running the Caminante-Wanderer blog for many years. A few days ago he published a hermeneutics of arbitrariness. In it, he tries to give a slightly different interpretation to the decree for the Society of St. Peter, with which Pope Francis largely freed this Ecclesia Dei community from the yoke of the Motu proprio Traditionis Custodes, and to draw attention to some aspects that, in his view, have not been sufficiently addressed so far have received attention.

Hermeneutic of Arbitrariness

by Wanderer

The Decree of February 11, by which Pope Francis authorized the Society of St. Peter (FSSP) and with it, it seems, the other Ecclesia Dei Institutes to use the surviving liturgical books, including the Roman Pontifical, has triggered countless comments. Few of us expected such a measure, and it came as a surprise, especially to those who claim that the pontiff was possessed of a particular hatred of the traditional liturgy. Traditions Custodes was certainly bad news and seemed to confirm this assumption: Francis is attempting to suppress the traditional liturgy and, by forbidding the use of the Roman Pontifical before liturgical reform, effectively condemns the traditionalists to extinction or to relying on one or the other to join the Society of Saint Pius in any other way, which would result in the “resignation” from the Church.

In this blog, however, we have always maintained that Pope Francis is neither a traditionalist nor a progressive on liturgical matters. He's a Jesuit, maybe the best Jesuit who ever lived, and as such he doesn't care about the liturgy. He does not understand them, for a purely practical mind is unable to understand the worship offered to God for its own sake. He is interested in politics and pastoral action. The rest is incomprehensible to him. The decree favoring the Society of Peter confirms this hypothesis.

The surprise has led many observers to speak of a kind of papal "schizophrenia": the pope issues a motu proprio fatal to the traditional liturgy and shortly thereafter opens the floodgates for a sizeable group of traditionalists to continue celebrating their Latin Masses as they want. And we must not forget that the authorization granted to the Society of St. Peter is not the first, that of the motu proprio deviates from what he himself had proclaimed. In addition to several granted by him on a personal level, and despite intense pressure, he has granted others that are public. For example, in St. Peter's Basilica, where even the rite of Paul VI. cannot be celebrated privately, according to Traditions Custodes, two solemn masses are celebrated in the traditional Rite.

The possible papal "schizophrenia" is not the only explanation for the decree. I propose the following hermeneutical keys to the papal contradiction:

1. We all know how good Pope Francis is with the language of gestures, for better or for worse. Suffice it to recall, for example, the grim and sullen face with which he can be seen in photos with Donald Trump or Mauricio Macri. With the priests of the Society of St. Peter, on the other hand, he shows a smiling and satisfied face, which suggests that the conversation took place in the best conditions and that he felt comfortable with them, and this is one of the traditionalist groups, considered the most rigid, as you can imagine.

2. The conversation is said to have lasted an hour, which is a very long time for a papal audience granted to two priests who hold important positions within the Society of St. Peter but are not its supreme authority. Perhaps a reader more knowledgeable than I can tell us whether Pope Francis frequently receives Superiors General of religious orders and congregations and, if so, how long these audiences last.

3. It is known, because it has also been published, that the origin of the audience was a letter that some priests of the Society of St. Peter sent to the Pope expressing their concern about the consequences of Traditions Custodes, and in response to the letter they were summoned to Rome to meet with the Holy Father. And I believe that the initiative for such a privilege came directly from the pope and not from a secretary of the papal household. No halfway skilled and loyal subordinate would put his superior in an embarrassing and compromising situation. Everyone knew it was a touchy and thorny subject. This fact and the two points mentioned above suggest that the Holy Father has no particular aversion to the traditional liturgy. If that were the case, it would be easy for him, plain and simple, to apply Traditions Custodes to demand what he has every right in the world to do. Or, as is his habit, he would avoid any interviews or meetings where he expects a confrontation. It should be remembered that Francis practically suspended the consistories at which cardinals and other Roman prelates meet with the pope to discuss ecclesiastical matters. Bergoglio, as Bishop of Buenos Aires, has always avoided confrontations and therefore avoids granting audiences or going to places where he foresees a difficult situation. I know a number of people who have asked for a personal audience with the Pope and have not even received an answer. The Priests of the Society of Peter were summoned to Santa Marta by Pope Francis to discuss the motu proprio.

4. To what extent can Traditiones Custodes be considered as a Franciscan manifesto against the traditional liturgy? This is certainly the first and simplest reading, but the facts on which we are commenting allow for other interpretations that were not possible until recently. Let's look at some facts:

a. The motu proprio comes from the office of Archbishop Arthur Roche and his staff. This English Archbishop was appointed by Benedict XVI. as Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and is not a liturgist, which suggests that all his liturgical knowledge and consequent bungling is the fruit of the express training he received from Andrea Grillo, and this is no exaggeration as illustrated: The text of Traditiones Custodes repeats almost verbatim many paragraphs from articles and other writings that Grillo has been publishing for at least fifteen years ( here, here and here ), and the principles on which it is based are exactly the same ones propagated by this Bolognese liturgist since Pope Ratzinger promulgated the Summorum Pontificum. In short, Traditiones Custodes was not written or conceived by Bergoglio; he merely signed what others wrote for him.

b. I don't mean to say that Bergoglio didn't know what he was doing. He knew that very well. For years he was under constant pressure from the Italian bishops, who were alarmed at the growth of the traditionalist movement and, above all, at the strong sympathy among young priests for the traditional Mass. And the Pope did not want to have any problem with the Italian bishops, especially in the midst of the excesses that he committed and still commits himself in that episcopacy (suffice it to say the recent appointment of the new Archbishop of Turin). And he gave in to the pressure.

c. Bergoglio was also aware of the American bishops' functional sympathy for conservative and traditionalist positions. Bergoglian hostility towards Americans deepened after the shocking incident of the American Bishops' Conference virtually flouting papal wishes regarding Biden and the admission of pro-abortion politicians to Communion. To obstruct the traditional Mass would be to anger Americans, which, being a good Peronist, he abhors, all the more so when it threatens his power.

5. Several traditionalist websites rightly argue that the permission given to the Society of St. Peter is an "indult" and can therefore be revoked at any time, which would prove the malice and duplicity of Francis. It is true that it is a gesture of mercy, but we should keep a few points in mind:

a. For Bergoglio, everything is a gesture of grace, even canon law. He made several reforms to the code just a few weeks ago. The only thing he hasn't changed is the Scriptures. We cannot expect him to proclaim a universal law.

b. It should be remembered that for decades the only way to celebrate the traditional Mass was by indult and that there had to be a “schism” for it to be granted. According to some scholars,  Benedict XVI's authorization given in Summorum Pontificum is also an indult. The curious thing is that with both the indults of John Paul II and Pope Ratzinger, a long time must have passed and/or extraordinary events must have taken place. The indult to the Society of St. Peter was granted immediately after an audience.

c. What other legal form was possible besides an indult? Only one: the abolition of the Missal of Paul VI, which is the only "ordinary" form of celebration of the Latin Rite. We can't expect that much.

i.e. Many believe that the Indult is a very fragile legal form and that its days are numbered. We recall, however, that this is not always the case: the Crusade Bull is an indult that has been, or is still, valid for more than eight centuries, and we traditionalist Spaniards rely on it to eat meat on Fridays. Or Communion in the hand is an indult that still applies and is unlikely to be abolished.

6. It is also said that the papal decree insists on Traditions Custodes in the last paragraph and I think this is one of the most interesting and positive aspects of the situation. There it is suggested ( suadet ) that as far as possible ( quantum fieri potest ) this motu proprio should be carefully considered ( sedulo cogitetur ) . It's something minimal, remarkably minimal. The priests of the Society of Peter are not even obliged to read Traditionis Custodes . They are just suggested to think about it, if possible.

7. It is also said that the indult was not published and is therefore of dubious validity. However, it should be noted that this is not a law that comes into force upon its publication in the country's official gazette. It is permission given to a specific group within the Church. One could make a long list of indults that have never been published and yet whose validity has not been compromised. For example, the so-called "Agatha Christie Indult," which makes it possible for the traditional Mass to continue to be celebrated in the United Kingdom under certain circumstances.

I think that the above facts lead to the conclusion that for Pope Francis, Traditions Custodes is a document of political rather than liturgical significance, while for Archbishop Roche and his collaborators in the Congregation for Divine Worship it is an eminently liturgical measure with a clear intention to destroy the traditional liturgy. Consequently, and paradoxically as it may seem, Pope Francis is our main or only advocate on liturgical questions, for whatever reason.

Precisely for this reason, it makes sense to reconsider the strategy of groups and analysts from the traditional world who, after the publication of the motu proprio, devoted themselves to the violent attacks on Francis, even committing incomprehensible mistakes, the consequences of which we are all feeling. The priests of the Society of St. Peter have shown us a path that has led to the goal.

But what is the goal we are striving for? To protect as much as possible the position that Pope Benedict XVI. has won for the traditional liturgy, to preserve it as much as possible, or to make a name for oneself with constant attacks on the Holy Father for what he does or does not do on liturgical questions? If it is the first option, we should be cautious and meek, which does not mean that we remain silent in the face of the devastation the Argentine Pope is wreaking on the Church. But it means having clear goals in mind and using the necessary common sense.

Translation: Giuseppe Nardi 
Image : Caminante Wanderer
Trans: Tancred vekronn99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Cardinal Sarah: "The Church is Not a Battlefield"

 

Cardinal Robert Sarah in the first interview since his retirement by Pope Francis.

(Rome) The daily Il Foglio today published a conversation with Robert Cardinal Sarah, the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship who was resigned on February 20 by Pope Francis. The cardinal from Guinea is one of the most prominent Church representatives, who was repeatedly in conflict with the ruling Pope. Cardinal Sarah comments on current and future challenges for the Church and his relationship with Pope Francis. He talks about the background to his book with Benedict XVI. in defense of the sacramental priesthood and priestly celibacy and warns against the German Synodal Way and a "creeping apostasy". The interview was conducted by Matteo Matzuzzi, Il Foglio's Vaticanist.


"The Church is Not a Battlefield"


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Matzuzzi recalls that Cardinal Sarah's books, four in number, the first of which was published in 2015, all became international bestsellers. "Which is something of a miracle, given the complex subjects of his works and the low inclination in modern humanity to read," says Matzuzzi.


Many were surprised when the Vatican press office announced the retirement of Cardinal Sarah two weeks ago. However, the decision was not as surprising as Matzuzzi represents. The autumn of 2019 was the expiration of the five-year term of office as Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Order of the SacramentsA formal extension, contrary to what the Vaticanist suggested, did not take place. A second term would have lasted until 2024. Obviously too long for Francis. He tacitly left the cardinal in office, which gave the Pope the opportunity to terminate Sarah's mandate at any time and without a spectacular dismissal. This was all the more true when the cardinal turned 75 in June 2020 and Francis had to put his resignation on his desk.

“The Pope asked me to do my job in the service of the universal Church donec aliter provideatur to continue, that is, as long as the Holy Father does not determine otherwise. A few weeks ago the Pope informed me that he had now decided to accept my resignation. I immediately told him that I was happy and grateful for his decision. I have repeated it many times: obedience to the Pope is not just a human necessity, it is the means to obey Christ who put the Apostle Peter and his successors at the head of the Church. I am happy and proud to have served three Popes, Saint John Paul II, Benedict XVI. and Francis, in the Roman Curia for more than twenty years. I have endeavored to be a loyal, obedient, and humble servant of the truth of the Gospel. Even if some journalists keep repeating the same stupid things: I have never opposed the Pope."

 

Matzuzzi wants to know what memory he takes with him of his service at the Divine Service Congregation, which deals with the liturgy.


“Some see the leadership of this dicastery as an honorary position of little importance. In contrast to this, I believe that responsibility for the liturgy places us in the center of the Church, the very foundation of her being. The Church is neither an administration nor a human institution. The Church mysteriously extends Christ's presence on earth. 'The Liturgy', says the Second Vatican Council, 'is the climax towards which the Church's work strives, and at the same time the source from which all her strength flows' ( Sacrosanctum Concilium, 10), and 'consequently every liturgical celebration, as the work of Christ the priest and his body, who is the Church, is primarily a sacred act, the effectiveness of which no other activity of the Church achieves in rank and measure' ( Sacrosanctum Concilium, 7). The Church exists to give God to people. That is precisely the role of the liturgy: to worship God and impart divine grace to souls. When the liturgy is sick, the whole Church is in danger because her relationship with God is not only weakened, but profoundly damaged. The Church therefore runs the risk of breaking away from its divine source in order to become a self-centered institution. It affects me very much: There is a lot of talk about the Church and its necessary renewal. But are we talking about God? Let us talk about the work of redemption that Christ accomplished, mainly through the paschal mystery of his blessed suffering, his resurrection from the dead and his glorious ascension, the paschal mystery, through which he 'destroyed our death by dying and recreated life through his resurrection' (Sacrosanctum Concilium , 5). Instead of speaking of ourselves: let's turn to God! That is the message that I have repeated over and over for years. If God is not at the center of the life of the Church, then she is in mortal danger. That is certainly the reason why Benedict XVI. declared that the crisis of the Church is essentially a crisis of the liturgy because it is a crisis of the relationship with God. That is also why I, Benedict XVI. following, insists: The purpose of the liturgy is not to celebrate the community or man, but God. This is very well done by expressing the oriented celebration. 'Where a direct common turning towards the east is not possible', says Benedict XVI., 'The cross can serve as the inner east of faith. It should stand in the middle of the altar and be the common point of view for the priest and the praying community. So we follow the old call to prayer that stood on the threshold of the Eucharist: 'Conversi ad Dominum'- Turn to the Lord. So we look together at the one whose death has torn open the temple veil - at the one who stands for us before the Father and embraces us in his arms, who makes us the living new temple of the Holy Spirit (cf. 1 Cor 6:19) . When everyone turns to the cross together, the danger of being too human and self-contained, face-to-face is avoided. Let us open our hearts so that God can break in. For the idea, as Joseph Ratzinger said, that the priest and the people must face each other in prayer, arose only in modern Christianity and was completely foreign to early Christianity. It is clear that the priest and the people do not face one another, but pray facing the only Lord, the Christ, who walks towards us in silence. That is one of the reasons why I have insisted on the need for there to be room for silence in the liturgy. When man is silent, he leaves room for God. Conversely, when the liturgy becomes 'talkative', it forgets that the cross is its center and one organizes around the microphone. All of these questions are crucial because they determine the place we give to God. And unfortunately they have turned into ideological questions." 


“The regret” that speaks from these words is unmistakable, said Matzuzzi, who asked what Cardinal Sarah meant by “ideological questions”.


“Too often today in the Church we behave as if everything were a question of politics, power, influence and the unjustified imposition of a hermeneutic of the Second Vatican Council of total and irreversible break with tradition. It was very painful for me to see these factions fighting. When I have spoken of liturgical orientation and a sense of the sacred, I have been told: 'You are against the Second Vatican Council'. This is wrong! I don't think there is any point in the struggle between progressives and conservatives in the Church. These are political and ideological categories. The Church is not a political battlefield. All that counts is the ever deeper search for God, to meet Him and humbly kneel down, to worship Him. 

When Pope Francis appointed me, he gave me two instructions: to implement the liturgical constitution of the Second Vatican Council and to implement bringing to life the liturgical legacy of Benedict XVI.. I am deeply convinced that these two instructions form a single direction, because Benedict XVI. is certainly the personality that understood Vatican II most deeply. To continue the liturgical work of Benedict XVI. is surely the best way of applying the true council. Unfortunately, some ideologues want to oppose the Church before the Council to a Church after the Council. They divide and do the work of the devil. The Church is one, without breaks, without changes of direction ,because their founder Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13: 8). The Church strives towards God, orientates us towards him. From the Creed of Saint Peter to the Second Vatican Council to Pope Francis, the Church turns to us Christ. Giving the liturgy its sacred character, leaving space for silence and sometimes celebrating it towards the East, as Pope Francis does in the Sistine Chapel or in Loreto, means applying the Council in a deep and spiritual way. I point out an extraordinary coincidence: On the day on which my replacement was announced, Pope emeritus Benedict XVI sent me. the French edition of his works on the liturgy. I saw in it an invitation from Providence to continue this work of  restoring a liturgy that places God at the center of the life of the Church." 


But how was the collaboration with Pope Francis?


“Some insinuate that we are enemies for no reason and without being able to provide concrete and credible evidence. But that's not correct. Pope Francis loves sincerity. We have always worked with simplicity, regardless of journalists' imaginations. Pope Francis, for example, received and understood the book 'From the depths of the heart,'  for which I worked together with Benedict XVII have not hidden my concern to him about the ecclesiological consequences of questioning priestly celibacy. When he received me after this publication, while press campaigns accused me of lying, the Pope supported and encouraged me. It seems that he had read with appreciation the copy with a dedication, which Pope Benedict XVI. in his fine way had sent him. On this occasion I could see that the truth always triumphs over the lie. There is no point in starting large communication campaigns. All it takes is the courage to be honest and free. The support of Pope Francis, the constant affection of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. and the thousands of letters of thanks from priests and laypeople from all over the world have allowed me to understand the depth of the message of the risen Jesus: Do not be afraid! "


But how does Cardinal Sarah see the future of the Church?


“I am a member of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. There I see with immeasurable joy how the Church radiates holiness. Let us rejoice to see the impressive number of so many daughters and sons of the Catholic Church who take seriously the Gospel and the universal call to holiness  'for from the side of Christ who fell asleep on the cross has emerged the wonderful mystery of the whole Church ''' ( Sacrosanctum Concilium, 5). Regardless of what those “born blind” say, and despite the many sins of their members, the Church is beautiful and holy. It is the expansion of Jesus Christ. The Church is not a secular institution. Her health is not measured by Her power and influence. The Church experiences Good Friday today. Water seems to be entering the ship from all sides. Some betray Her from within. I think of the drama and the terrible crimes of the pedophile priests. How could mission be fruitful when so many lies obscure the beauty of Jesus' face? Others are tempted to betrayal by leaving the ship to follow the powers that be right now. I think of the temptations especially in Germany from that Synodal wayWe are asked what is the Gospel, if all this is pulled through to the end: a real silent ApostasyBut Christ's victory always comes through the cross. The Church must go to the cross and to the great silence of Holy Saturday. We must pray with Mary over the body of Jesus. See, pray, repent and make amends so that we can better proclaim the victory of the risen Christ." 


And what will Cardinal Sarah do now?


“I will not stop working. I'm also happy to have more time to pray and read. I will continue to write, speak, and travel. Here in Rome I continue to receive priests and believers from all over the world. More than ever, the Church needs bishops who speak clearly, freely and faithfully to Jesus Christ and to the doctrine of faith and morality of His Gospel. I intend to continue and even strengthen this mission. I must continue to work in the service of the unity of the Church, truth and love. I humbly wish to sustain the reflection, prayer, courage and faith of many confused Catholics who have been through the many crises we are currently going through, confused and disoriented: anthropological crises, cultural crises, crises of faith, crises of the priests, crises of morality, but above all crises of our relationship with God." 

  

Text: Giuseppe di Nar-
image: MiL

Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com

AMDG

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Novus Horror Missae: Will the Next Battery of Changes to Novus Ordo Invalidate It?


AMDG

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Evil Bishop Cancels Catholic Faith in His Diocese: Abolishes the Creed

Edit: they have been doing this at liberal parishes for ages. It’s also a Liturgical Abuse, but liceity isn’t an important feature of the rule of these dishonest princes of the Church.

ROME (ChurchMilitant.com) - A cathedral congregation is expressing bewilderment after the bishop announced he was omitting the Nicene Creed so as not to offend non-Catholics present.    
After preaching his homily on the Feast of the Epiphany, Bp. Derio Olivero of the diocese of Pinerolo made the announcement about the omission.
"Since there are also non-believers, everyone will say it silently," Olivero told his flock at the Cathedral of St. Donatus in Pinerolo, a town in Piedmont, near Turin. "Those who believe can say it, and those who don't believe or have other beliefs will silently contemplate the reasons for their beliefs."

Friday, April 26, 2019

The Removal of Iconostases of the West and the People’s Altar

Altar and Church, presented by Stefan Heid in his latest book

By Christoph Matthias Hagen

When, fifty years ago, the liturgical reform of Paul VI. for which the Pope appealed to the decisions of the Second Vatican Council, it was often and gladly argued, that it was nothing different from what happened more than 400 years before, when Pius V. issued his Missal on behalf of the Council of Trent. In fact, both councils relied on the norm of the fathers, which they would use to restore the liturgy. The Council of Trent had brought the Tridentine Missal of Pius V, where the II Vaticanum was followed by the Missale Romanum of Paul VI. In fact, both books have the same Latin name: Missale Romanum, and the number of the typical editions begins again after Vatican II.

If one looks at the Roman liturgy in its rites and texts before and after Trent, one immediately recognizes continuity and the closest possible agreement, where, after the Second Vatican Council, two different liturgies, one old and one new, are strikingly distinguished. Too different are apparently the understandings of history and the working of both councils and what it is they each understand of the Standard of the Fathers and how far they reach to the Fathers’ title.


Stefan Heid, who works in Rome as a professor of liturgical history and Christian archeology, was editor of an anthology entitled Operation am Lebendem Objekt in 2012 [Operating on a Living Object], in which there are contributions that show where in fact similarities of post-Tridentine-Pian and post-Vatican-Paul liturgical reform lie. These can hardly be found in dealing with rites and texts, but in the field of church construction and sanctuary design. It was not the software that determines how the liturgy comes to life in a similar way, but both Councils have installed new hardware, so to speak. Similarly, almost identically, is in both cases also the reason for this reorganization and redesign of the liturgical place and its equipment as an educational-catechetical motif.

Heid dedicates this issue to a large-scale monograph just published by Schnell & Steiner in Regensburg: Kirche und Altar. Prinzipien Christliches Liturgie. 

Two altars before Trent, two altars after Vatican II

While in the liturgical reform of Paul VI. above all, it requires the people can see the altar, so a second altar was set up in front of the high altar, there was in pre-Tridentine times the rood screen, which separated the presbytery from the nave, where the faithful arrived. Behind the rood screen in the choir was the high altar in cathedral and monastery churches, which the laity, however, could not see, and therefore, in front of the rood screen there was the so-called cross altar, both of which were oriented. Masses were celebrated at this altar, in which the people were directly involved, in this sense, it could even be regarded as a kind of people’s altar.


Choral side of the rood screen of the Cathedral of Albi (view from nave).

In post-Tridentine times, the rood screens were removed, which sometimes took a hundred years, and no longer erected in new churches to clear the view to the high altar. The altar that had become superfluous in this way merged with the high altar, so to speak, or it came to an altar fusion, so to speak. The communion rail remained a relic of the former choir barriers, as it were, a shrunken or miniature rood screen.

After the Second Vatican, the new altar (Josef Andreas Jungmann SJ) was added in the sanctuary, behind which the priest now stepped to celebrate. The Communion rail disappeared as well, so basically the difference between the sanctuary and the nave was lost.

Celebration versus Populum in the Liturgical Movement

It should not be forgotten, however, that already in the 1920s and 1930s in liturgical circles the establishment of modern people’s altars took place, such as in the crypt of the Benedictine Maria Laach in the East Eifel or from 1926 in the Cologne Basilica of the Holy Apostles. This was believed to be in accordance with early Christian custom and with the findings that archeology had brought to light, so was just convinced, not to introduce any innovation, but to revive the ideal state of ancient times.

This perspective was then officially prescribed after the Council, which had been held from 1962 to 1965, and practically lasts until today.

Hopefully Heid will not end up like Ratzinger

Joseph Ratzinger later regretted that his book, The Spirit of Liturgy had been shortened on the question of celebration. Of course, if Heid consciously concentrates on the altar question in his work, it may well be that it happens to him in a similar way, which would be a pity.

The context of the problem that Heid faces is much further defined:

First of all, the idea that the early Christians had met for the Eucharistic celebration as many, smaller, worship groups in various private houses within a city, and in the sources, the Latin term, domus ecclesiae meaning “house churches” in this sense. Heid, on the other hand, advocates that domus ecclesiae means church buildings, and that in every city there is basically only one episcopal, central Eucharistic place (see pp. 89f).

"The scientific dispute over the organizational form of the emerging Christianity, which can be described as 'house church versus bishop's church', ends in favor of the episcopal church and the unity of the municipality. The popular thesis of a plural urban Christianity fragmented into small cult groups must be radically questioned "(p. 158, in italics in the text).
Of course, one must not overlook the fact that early Christianity, as a movement, has known manifold, different, and also path-breaking lines of development. There may have been various Christian Eucharistic sites in one city, but in principle, only one Catholic, in unity with the rightful bishop. Heid also argues that the private gathering requires Christianity to be a movement of a few rich, who, in modern terms, could afford the luxury of a private chapel. If this condition had been applied, it would have stood in the way of the widespread effect of Christianity and its spread. It might have been elitist, but undoubtedly remained small and soon drowned again. 

Nevertheless, one should not think of the Christian community in the early days as a mass movement, that even from this perspective a singular place of liturgical gathering would not have been logistically possible, especially as Heid emphasizes that a Sunday duty can not be projected onto this early temporal and organizational stage. The precept of Sunday sanctification is just to be distinguished from this question.

Similarly, some of Heidi's statement is less likely to obey that orienteering is primarily related to (even extra-liturgical) prayers and says nothing about whether the Eucharist is perceived as a sacrifice or not (see page 449). Rather, this impression arises from the modern folk altar, through whose table shape and the celebration facing the people (and usually a deliberately asymmetrical decoration of candles and flowers) the meal comes to the fore and the character of the victim is downplayed.

Supposed papal privilege and modern folk altar
"When Pope Julius II begins in 1506, to demolish the 1200-year-old St. Peter's -  Old St. Peter - to make way for the new, mighty renaissance cathedral, for many, a world collapses in the face of such sacrilege. (...) However, where the living tradition has been demolished, there is the danger of making the early Church into  one's own picture of it. (...) There are drastic reconstructions of the old rooms” (p. 407f).

With the Renaissance, the sense of the meaning of the direction of prayer and celebration was lost in Rome. Not a few churches were there, so that the popes celebrated to the east and were practically turned to the people, but not with the intention to look at them, but to orient themselves geographically eastward. This knowledge and understanding was lost:

Altar of the Sistine Chapel: on the west wall with the celebration direction West



Altar of the Sistine Chapel on the west wall with the celebration direction West.

"Paradigmatic is the high altar of the Sistine Chapel, which stands on the west wall. The pope celebrates with his back to the people and looks to the west. Many public station Masses are celebrated in the city are liturgically wrong now. The 'altar of St. Peter' plays a central role in this. Without even understanding that here the liturgy (sic ! it must be called correct Liturgy apparently, reviewer’s note ChMH) is right behind the altar and looks to the east, the popes reclaim a general privilege to celebrate versus populum. (...) Consequentially, Pope Sixtus V had the papal altars of the great basilicas rebuilt in order to celebrate to the people, regardless of whether he is looking to the east or the west. (...) The liturgical experts of the time celebrate this as the restoration of early Christian conditions " (p. 441, in italics in the text).

Following the Baumstark principle of the preservation of the old in high-quality liturgy, the alleged privilege of the pope is then understood as a remnant in which original, once common practice has been preserved.

Thus, later in the Liturgical Movement and post-Vatican-Pauline liturgical reform, one becomes convinced that the direction of celebration is to return to the original, while the modern people’s altar and the altar of the early Christians actually have at most the accessible, but not the actually significant and essential turn to the geographical east, towards an orientation that is intentionally to the direction of East.

While in a first phase of the most recent form of liturgy it was often the case, for example, to give a baroque or neo-Baroque altar to a baroque church, and to give the impression that it had been there in 1745, one now increasingly notices that the now insalled people’s altars often can not deviate drastically enough from the historical space in terms of material and design, so provocatively they are designed and placed. In many places, too, they are moving more and more into the center, whereas the altar itself was never centered in historically round buildings, but was set back to the east.

Stefan Heid also does not leave such questions unaffected.



New folk altar, which deviates drastically from historical space in terms of material and design.

Perhaps it is simply that today's liturgical science or liturgical ideology no longer has any interest in legitimizing itself with the proof or appearance of originality, but rather to immovably demonstrate its own, altogether different and new understanding of the Eucharist in the new altar opposite to its origin and tradition.

Bibliographic information: Heid, St.,  Altar und Kirche Prinzipien Christliches Liturgie  82 b / w illustrations, 73 colored illustrations, 496 pages, hardcover, thread-stitched, (Schnell & Steiner) Regensburg 2019, ISBN: 978-3-7954-3425-0, Price: Euro 50,00.

The book can be purchased through katholisches.info partner bookstore.

Image: Wikicommons

Heid, St.,  Altar und Kirche Prinzipien Christliches Liturgie  

Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG 

Monday, April 10, 2017

Pope Francis Kneels

Pope Francis Kneeling at Palm Sunday Mass
(Rome) On Palm Sunday, Pope Franziskus celebrated  the Liturgy of the blessing of the Palms, and Holy Mass on the St. Peter's Square in Rome - and knelt down.
When the Passion story was sung, when the words came, "But Jesus cried aloud. Then he breathed out the spirit," all knelt down in memory of the death of Jesus Christ. Pope Francis, too, knelt on a knee-stool prepared for him.
This is to be reported, because the missing kneeling of the reigning pope before the Most Blessed Sacrament was recently discussed in some contributions with a view to the forthcoming Holy Thursday. The kneeling in remembrance of the crucifixion of Christ is a deep reverence. The kneeling before the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Sacrament of the Altar, and as the highest form of expression in the worship of the most sacred, is another stage of worship.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Photo: CTV (Screenshot)
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Silence in The Liturgy

Edit: we're not sure what's going on in a nave where there's a lot of idle chit chat before and after Mass, but it's probabaly not holy. The Sisters of St. Joseph Crandolet, even as they were declining in the seventies used to whack us and give us severe looks for talking before and after Mass. This is probabaly before Father Whackadoodle had instilled a sense of celebration and secular merriment in their minds. This article is long overdue:

[Liturgy Guy] I remember the general quiet and stillness associated with test taking back when I was in school. Everyone understood the necessity of maintaining silence in order to allow for each student to achieve his or her best possible results. Teachers for their part facilitated this by establishing an atmosphere conducive to learning through limiting noise and movement.
Schools of Prayer
What do you experience when you participate in the Holy Mass each Sunday? Do you enter into the sacred, thereby experiencing the same comparable stillness that you would expect to have in a classroom at school? Is noise and motion minimized so that concentration and silence can be maximized? Does your parish allow for the necessary environment that is conducive to deep prayer?
In his 2001 Apostolic Letter Novo Millennio Inuente Pope St. John Paul called for our christian communities to become “genuine schools of prayer”. He continued:
Learning this Trinitarian shape of Christian prayer and living it fully, above all in the liturgy, the summit and source of the Church’s life…is the secret of a truly vital Christianity, which has no reason to fear the future, because it returns continually to the sources and finds in them new life. (NMI, 32)
https://liturgyguy.com/2016/01/12/why-silence-is-important-to-the-mass/

AMDG

Monday, January 2, 2017

Papal Commission Ecclesia Dei: Private Masses Allowed in Immemorial Rite Without Permission

(Rome) On 18 October 2016 one of the faithful presented ECCLESIA DEI with a Dubium (doubt). The question was whether a priest with a regular permission could celebrate a private Mass in the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite according to the Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum (Articles 2 and 5.4) in a validly built private chapel without further permission.

On 3 November, the Pontifical Commission gave its affirmative Responsum (answer). The Commission confirmed that such an event was permitted. At the same time, the Commission reaffirmed that the faithful can of course participate in a private Mass. Anyone who wishes to participate and spontaneously participate in the celebration of the  Mass has the right to do so within the meaning of Article 4 of Summorum Pontificum. The number of participants is irrelevant. The priest can also exclude believers from attending.

The reply of the Pontifical Commission, Ecclesia Dei, also states that a private Mass in a private chapel does not require any authorization, for example, by the local priest or local bishop.

In the liturgical form of Pope Paul VI., the term Missa sine populo (Mass without people)
is used for private Mass, but it is confusing, as the term "private Mass" was an occasion for misunderstandings. The term private Mass does not mean a "private" Mass (a priest or a group), excluding third parties. It simply means the difference from a "community Mass" in the sense of Church law, ie the mass of a parish or a convent.

Inquiry to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei

Private Masses may not be publicly announced by the priest. As the Church jurist Gero Weishaupt explained on Introibo.net, however, the priest can provide information to the faithful on request. The faithful, on the other hand, can also publicly call for a private Mass and invite people to participate.

Therefore, the phrase "private Mass" does not refer to the number of participants. Thousands of faithful could attend a private Mass. The phrase "Missa sine populo" (which has replaced the term "private Mass" in the Novus Ordo), on the contrary, means that the priest is permitted to say Mass even if no faithful are present.

Prior to the form of Paul VI. in 1969, a priest required a papal indult to celebrate a Holy Mass without without an altar server. Holy Mass is always an expression of ecclesial communion and of the benefit of the entire Church, which is why at least an altar server or the faithful had to be present.  

There was no "solitary" mass in Church history. A celebration without a ministrant was "not inadmissible", only in emergencies, in order to be able to offer the last rites to a dying man. It is only since 1970 that the Church has regularly allowed a priest to celebrate alone.

Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Messa in Latino
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Monday, June 6, 2016

Cardinal Sarah: Words of Consecration Mean "For Many" and not, "For All"

Cardinal Robert Sarah in discussion with Infovaticana
(Madrid) Cardinal Robert Sarah, Prefect of the Roman Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments expressed  his hope that the Church in Spain would introduce "in the coming year," the words of consecration pro multis.
In 2006, Pope Benedict XVI. approved a decree of the Congregation, to more accurately adjust the translation of the words of consecration in the local language to reflect the Church's Latin language and the Gospels.
Cardinal Arinze, Prefect of the Congregation of Divine Worship 2002-2008, wrote to all bishops' conferences:
"The Bishops' Conferences of the countries where currently the wording 'for all' or an equivalent of it are in use, are therefore requested to provide the faithful in the next one to two years with the necessary catechesis on this issue in order to prepare for the introduction an accurate translation of the phrase pro multis  in the local languages- for example, for many, 'by molti', etc. That will be the case for the next translations of the Roman Missal, which will allow for its use in various countries, by the bishops and the Holy See. "

Defaulting Episcopal Conferences

That was ten years ago. Some Bishops' Conferences responded, including those of the US. The English-speaking put the reform through first. The new Spanish translation of the Missal is long finished and has already been implemented by some countries, including Mexico. Other countries are delaying, including Spain, Italy and the German-speaking world.
In Spain, the new translation was even approved by the Episcopal Conference, but it has not yet been implemented. To the north and south of the Alps, in the German and Italian areas, it seems to be understood that the election of Pope Francis has offered a "breathing space" to be able to delay the matter.
The initial justification named was for discussion and a consensus, then the necessary completion and publication of a new missal translation and finally "difficulties" because the faithful would not understand the "change".
The German bishops were so cunning that they initially reinterpreted every implementation of the papal requirement in an arbitrary dialectical word game for "disobedience." Some priests, who felt the faithfulness to Gospel in the words of consecration were important had, namely, started to implement  Benedict's mandatory order on their own.
The words of consecration  were "always pro multis and never pro omnibus "
Equally paradoxical was the assertion that the people were not properly informed, since that task had been expressly delegated to the bishops. If believers are not sufficiently informed, then this is due to the bishops. In German-speaking countries there were even no efforts for ten years after the papal decision binding for the whole universal Church.
Now In Spain it seems to be working. Cardinal Sarah said this during his recent visit to Spain to InfoVaticana:
"I hope that in 2017 the Mass will be celebrated in Spain Mass with the pro multis."
The "exact translation" of the Latin pro multis  in Spanish is "per muchos" (for many) and not "per todos" (for all). This is the way it's translated through the Gospels, which is why  there is the order, obligation and desire to adhere to it.
Cardinal Sarah called this to mind that in the Roman Rite it was "always pro multis and never pro omnibus."
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Infovaticana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Friday, March 25, 2016

Improperia, the Lament of the Savior in the Good Friday Liturgy

In the Good Friday at the beginning of the veneration of the Cross, the liturgy intones the  Improperia, the laments of the Saviour. It refers to the Old Testament Micah 6.3 to 4: "My people, what have I done to thee, Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me! I took thee out of the land of Egypt, rescued thee from the house of bondage. As a leader I sent you Moses, Aaron and Miriam ... "

The whole  is a legal dispute and as such, it returns to the Good Friday Liturgy: a dispute between the Messiah and his ungrateful people.

This includes the hymn Trisagion, which is sung not only in Latin but also Greek and in the Latin Church as among the Christians of the East.

In addition to the Kyrie Eleison  it is the only remaining Greek-speaking part in the Liturgy of the Roman Church, whose liturgical language is Latin since the 4th century.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

Because I brought thee out of the land of Egypt: Thou hast prepared a cross for thy Savior

Hagios o Theos - Sanctus deus
Hagios Ischyros - Sanctus fortis
Hagios Athanatos eleison hemas - Sanctus immortalis, miserere nobis

Because I led thee through the desert 40 years: and fed thee with manna, and brought thee into a land exceedingly good, thou hast prepared a cross for thy Savior.

O Holy God. O Holy Strong One. O Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us.

What more ought I to do for thee, that I have not done? I planted thee, indeed, my most beautiful vineyard: and thou hast become exceedingly bitter to Me: for in My thirst thou gavest me vinegar to drink: and with a spear thou has pierced the side of thy Savior.

O Holy God. O Holy Strong One. O Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us.

For thy sake I scourged Egypt with its firstborn: and thou hast scourged Me and delivered Me up.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I brought thee out of Egypt having drowned Pharaoh in the Red Sea: and thou hast delivered Me to the chief priests.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I open the sea before thee: and thou with a spear hast opened My side.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I went before thee in a pillar of a cloud: and thou hast brought Me to the judgment hall of Pilate.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I fed thee with manna in the desert: and thou hast beaten Me with blows and scourges.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I gave you the water of salvation and from the rock to drink: and thou hast given me gall and vinegar.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

For thee I struck the kings of the Canaanites: and thou hast struck My head with a reed.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I gave thee a royal scepter: and thou hast given to My head a crown of thorns.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

I have exalted thee with great power: and thou hast hanged me on the gibbet of the Cross.

My people, what have I done to thee? Or in what have I grieved thee? Answer me.

Text: GN
Illustration: Rogier van der Weyden, Kreuzigungstriptychon (um1440), Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien/Wikicommons