Skip to comments.Summorum Pontificum: my intro comments and the text (Fr. John Zuhlsdorf)
Posted on 07/07/2007 3:12:45 AM PDT by nickcarraway
Summorum Pontificum: my intro comments and the text
CATEGORY: SESSIUNCULUM Fr. John Zuhlsdorf @ 5:00 am Thanks to be to Pope Benedict, who has given back to the Church and the world a great gift.
As one friend put it, the world has been made just a little bit safer to live in.
This document is about opening hearts and healing. In his explanatory letter Pope Benedict even quotes 2 Cor 6:13: Widen your hearts!
Read Summorum Pontificum with a wide heart, and no one need fear that rights will be trampled or due authority undermined.
The Motu Proprio goes into effect on 14 September. We have time to chew and digest, collect things and make arrangements. We must not jump the gun.
But we can make a start.
What this Motu Proprio does
Effectively it levels the playing field for people who want to use the older liturgical forms.
Remember: the MP applies to all the sacraments as they were before the Council, not just Holy Mass. It concerns the liturgy, not just Holy Mass. Thus clerics (bishops, priests, deacons), who are obliged to recite the Liturgy of the Hours can use the older Breviarium Romanum as it was in 1962. Benedict is establishing the older form of liturgy, as in was in 1962, as an extraordinary form (forma extraordinaria). The Novus Ordo of the Roman Missal and all other liturgical books remain the ordinary way of celebrating the liturgy.
Extraordinary, here, does NOT mean rare or unusual or special. It simply means out of the common order. If we turn to how the Church uses Latin in, for example, a pretty good Latinist, St. Jerome, the adverb extraordinarie means with excessive frequency (cf. On Ephesians 1 ad. 2, 13). It cannot be argued legitimately from the word extraordinary that use of the older forms must necessarily be rare. It can be quite regular, depending on the circumstances, while in the larger scheme of things the Novus Ordo remains now the usual way things are done.
The Motu Proprio responds to THREE GROUPS of people:
1) Followers of the SSPX, for whom this form of Mass is a mark of identity, even though there are also deeper theological reasons for that break.
2) There are many lay people who also remember the older form of Mass from before the changes. And you dont have to be to 80 to remember those days. There are people in the 40s and 50s who remember living with the old Mass. They have always remained attached to the old Mass or have regained a longing for it.
3) There are those who were neither in a separated group nor remember the pre-Conciliar Mass. These are younger people who have discovered the older form.
As a result, it is unacceptable to suggest that these provisions were made merely to accomodate a bunch of nostalgic old foggies who cant get with the program. The provisions were made with anyone in mind who wants older forms, for any decent reason. People who want to avail of this extraordinary use are not second rate citizens.
They may not be treated any longer like the nutty aunt in the attic.
There are a few things to dispell.
First, in the explanatory letter the Pope invites bishops, 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. This does NOT impose an expiration date. What it does is ask for information about what is going on. If, in light of experience, the provisions need to be changed, they can be changed based on experience. However, I hasten to point out to the whiners who will say this weakens the Motu Proprio, that this invitation is NOT in the Motu Proprio itself. I will remind those who see the glass always as half empty that if the experiences are POSITIVE, the provisions could be adjusted positively. So, in a way, it is up to you. Open hearts. Work together. Save the Liturgy Save the World, as we say around this blog.
Second, the bishops retain authority in their dioceses. Can it be any other way? This is entirely normal, good and proper. However, the Pope has with this Motu Proprio made many things that were once rather vague far more concrete and clear. Remember, bishops can be allies. You must approach them properly, which is only common sense. It may be that Fr. Guido OBrien at St. Ipsydipsy doesnt want to or in incapable of celebrating Mass in the old way. In that case, the bishop could be helpful in resolving the dilemma.
Third, private Masses/liturgies in the old form cant be celebrated in private in the Triduum. That is normal and reasonable. that is the way it is in the Novus Ordo. In places where the older form is established in a parish for the older use, the Triduum CAN be celebrated with the older books. However, in parishes where the newer forms are the usual fare, and there is a regularly scheduled Mass with the older form, when the Triduum arrives, the older, extraordinary liturgy must give way to the ordinary. That is logical. In the Novus Ordo, as in the older days, there cannot be two Masses of the Last Supper on Holy Thursday, two Good Friday liturgies, or two Vigils. So, in this case, the ordinary takes precedence.
Fourth, the issue the Triduum and this reasonable restriction has nothing to do with the prayer about the Jews on Good Friday. This is simply a matter of what the Churchs logical practice is based on the sacred nature of those Triduum liturgies. The Jews were not part of the equation. Remember also that the 1962 Missale Romanum is used for the Triduum in those places where it will be permitted to use the older form at that time. The 1962 edition and not some earlier edition before the changes to those Good Friday petitions.
Fifth, as stated above, the 1962 Missale, the Missal of Bl. John XXIII is to be used, and NOT some earlier edition. Priests who are not adhering to the 1962 rubrics should be now ready and willing to adjust what they are doing. Lay people must be ready and willing to adjust their expectations.
Remarkably, on the Vatican website only the LEGAL section (second part) of the Motu Proprio is rendered into ENGLISH.
Here it is:
Attenzione: è stata tradotta solo la parte dispositiva del Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum ( .) ... 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 Churchs Lex orandi will in no any way lead to a division in the Churchs 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 statues. 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 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, 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. Peters, 7 July 2007, third year of Our Pontificate.
There are a few difficulties in the English translation, as I compare it to the Latin. The English in a few cases softens what the Latin says. I will be digging into them in other entries.
A common problem with the English translators at the Vatican...it will be interesting to see Fr. Z's analysis of this!
Thanks to be to Pope Benedict, who has given back to the Church and the world a great gift.
A great gift indeed!!
Thank you Pope Bendict XVI, and Father John Zuhlsdorf too.
I think he/they meant "statutes."
It didn’t usually go on that long (not where I lived, at least!). However, there were some prayers after Mass that were said in the Tridentine Rite, and of course there was the “Last Gospel.” Some of the prayers may have been optional anyway, but I think others were eliminated in the 1962 Missal, which was issued for the Tridentine Rite and not the Novus Ordo (which had not even been created by 1962), but made a few basically cosmetic changes.
Maybe some priest here who remembers the old practice could give us some help?
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.
Maybe a spell checker gone berserk? Actually, I think the translator probably made some last minute changes and got careless. I suspect that the above English may have read, "make it possible for," and the translator wanted to change it to "enable," forgot to remove the "for" and somehow plugged in "unable" instead of enable.
And as for "statues," maybe there was a mispelling and the spell-check suggested "statues" instead of "statutes" and the weary translator accepted it. I've done both of the above myself. Of course, my translations don't get officially released by the Vatican...
Did you see the celebratory video that Fr. Z just posted on his blog? Along with the bottle of champagne, of course.
LOL! I thought he said no gloating. There are some great photos of BXVI.
They’re wonderful pix of BXVI! I loved the “soundtrack,” too!
Did you see the celebratory video that Fr. Z just posted on his blog? Along with the bottle of champagne, of course.
What I did see was “Chillin the Veuve”. Looks like the one in white has already started. *s*
For some reason I can no longer get to his blog so I try to check his “feed” page http://wdtprs.com/blog/feed/
But I sure do miss the comments...
[...] 4. May prayer strengthen us for the spiritual battle we are told about in the Letter to the Ephesians: 'Draw strength from the Lord and from His mighty power' (Ephesians 6:10). The Book of Revelation refers to this same battle, recalling before our eyes the image of St. Michael the Archangel (Revelation 12:7). Pope Leo XIII certainly had a very vivid recollection of this scene when, at the end of the last century, he introduced a special prayer to St. Michael throughout the Church. "Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection...".
Although this prayer is no longer recited at the end of Mass, I ask everyone not to forget it and to recite it to obtain help in the battle against forces of darkness and against the spirit of this world. [...] (translated by google)
Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen. (copied from The Raccolta)
I liked the prayer to St. Michael. It would be nice if it comes back, even if it’s not mandatory.
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