Skip to comments.Student Push to Reinstate Campus Latin Mass Succeeds [Georgetown]
Posted on 02/23/2010 11:28:25 AM PST by marshmallow
A renewed push by students for the reintroduction of regular celebrations of the Tridentine Mass, or a traditional Mass conducted in Latin, will provide the Georgetown community with a new option for Roman Catholic worship on campus.
Starting Feb. 11, the traditional Latin Mass will be offered one weekday per week every other week. This will be the first time that this Mass has been offered on campus since May 2008.
The main advocate for the pre-Vatican II Mass (Mass said entirely in Latin]) Kieran Raval (COL 13) describes the Latin Mass as a way to feel a greater connection to the long historical and religious traditions of the Catholic Church as well as to grasp a greater understanding of the Novus Ordo Mass (post-Vatican II Mass).
I gained a sense of our Catholic spiritual and liturgical heritage by attending the traditional Latin Mass, which has helped me better understand the Novus Ordo, Raval said.
He stressed that neither Mass is spiritually superior to the other, but that they can work in unison to enhance ones overall religious experience. The two Masses are aesthetically different, and preference for one over the other is based upon personal choice.
In the traditional Latin Mass, the Mass is celebrated in Latin and the priest faces away from the congregation as a gesture symbolic of leading the congregation toward God. The traditional Latin Mass uses Gregorian chants as well as a more complex set of actions, gestures and postures by the priest.
Fr. Stephen Fields, S.J., the priest who celebrated the traditional Latin Mass when it was previously offered on campus, indicated that the traditional Mass is very popular among young people, possibly due to its contemplative nature.
My assumption is that, in a world of constant [noise], [young people] find that the contemplative silence of the Extraordinary Form nourishes their lives of prayer, Fields said.
The traditional Latin Mass will be celebrated by Fr. G. Ronald Murphy, S.J. when it resumes this week. Murphy agreed that aesthetics are an important factor underlying personal preference for either Mass. He said he believes that more important than individual preference for either Mass is the realization of what Mass itself signifies, however.
I like any type of worship that helps people come to a realization about what they are saying, Murphy said.
Murphy also described the difference between the two types of Masses as a shift in focus.
The old liturgy is very much God-centered and believes, in a way, that the best way to worship is to stand together and face God. The new liturgy wants us to face God and each other, Murphy said.
Student support has been integral in reinstituting the Mass. According to Raval, approximately 30 students have shown enthusiasm for the Extraordinary Mass. Additionally, a lecture series that aims to educate the community about the traditional Latin Mass and to address any questions or concerns is planned for the future.
Andrea Pittaluga (SFS 10), a student organizer of the lecture series, said that lecture topics may include explanations of the steps of the traditional Latin Mass, the different vestments and the connection to ancient Jewish temple worship. Dan Galloway (SFS 13), another student lecture series organizer, indicated the lecture series would provide the community with knowledge about the subtleties of the traditional Latin Mass and would benefit observers religious experiences when in Mass.
Raval stressed that apart from providing an additional means of worship, the traditional Latin Mass will enhance religious experience on campus.
Finally, I would like to note that all, Catholics and non-Catholics, are welcome to come and experience the beauty and reverence of this liturgy. By coming to a celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass, even those who prefer the Novus Ordo will gain tremendous insight into the mystery of the Eucharist and the liturgy as a whole, Raval said.
Ain’t that the truth!!!
“Fr. Stephen Fields, S.J., the priest who celebrated the traditional Latin Mass when it was previously offered on campus, indicated that the traditional Mass is very popular among young people, possibly due to its contemplative nature.”
Somebody has to do it ...
/src on/How generous of the Jesuits that run Georgetown./src off/ CINO University.
It’s a beginning!
Zmirak's one of my fave writers, and this --- on the Traditional Liturgy ---is really, really good.
That is how it felt to be young and Catholic in the 1970s. Every sacred thing had to be changed, every old thing replaced with a new one, every complicated beauty plastered over by the cheap and the easy. The message was almost subliminal, but by that means all the more powerful: All Your Church Are Belong to Us.
And by changing back the flag, by taking back our Mass, we are saying: Go back to Hell. Our Church belongs to Christ.
Yeah, pretty much. I remember the '70s. They weren't fun. I'm not a full blown traditionalst, but I can certainly lean that way.
Ouch. I was appalling little bigot, and the only mitigating factor is that I was so ignorant and so young.
Will wonders never cease?!
Traditional Mass [in] at Fordham
(N.B. "The celebrant will be Fr. Stephen M. Fields, S.J., of Georgetown University, ...")
Yeah, right. Like original Coke is not superior to New Coke
Even more than you know. The Jebbie who used to celebrate the TLM at Georgetown began because he'd been asked by some students. He now lives here and is a regular feature at our "indult" parish, where he has become wildly popular. I have served Mass for him many times and we have become good friends. In fact, I spoke with him about an hour ago.
Another Jesuit who works at the Vatican Observatory also celebrates the TLM, including in my parish when he's stateside. We are really blessed to have these guys (we even have a third one who comes over from the high school, who's also excellent).
Things are looking up for the SJs. I would not have said so three years ago, but if I knew an exceptionally bright and promising young man exploring the priesthood, I would not hesitate to recommend the Jesuits.
Hopefui — may this also happen at Notre Dame!
The author describes exactly what it was like for me, a young Catholic, at the time.
I wept when they closed our church for “renovation,” without telling the parishoners exactly what “renovation” meant. How old was I then? Oh....let’s see...about seven or eight — it was after my First Holy Communion, but before my brother’s.
Gone was the marble altar. Gone were the altar rails. Gone were the beautiful ceiling murals, gone were the stained glass windows, gone were the vestments hand embroidered by countless women over the years. And gone was the Mass I remembered.
Oh yes, I wept...and I gritted my teeth at every tambourine bang, every felt banner and every chorus of “Here I Am, Lord.”
But, Deo Gratias, I have been delivered! With the Holy Father’s motu proprio, the TLM is back! We are lucky enough to live very close to a parish which offers the TLM each and every week (and Holy Days).
Most of the beautiful trappings of the church are still missing, but the Mass is there, and what a blessing it is for us.
Good for those kids at Georgetown. I hope they get a regular Sunday Mass one day soon.
I wish there was one near where I live.
Thanks for that link. Good piece.