Skip to comments.Tridentine Mass "Not a Priority," Says Cardinal Arinze (Vatican Synod)
Posted on 10/14/2005 7:01:46 AM PDT by NYer
VATICAN CITY, OCT. 13, 2005 (Zenit.org).- No one at the Synod of Bishops on the Eucharist has addressed the issue of the "Tridentine rite" Mass that the Latin Church used before the Second Vatican Council.
The prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, Cardinal Francis Arinze, mentioned this at a press conference today when he evaluated the first phase of the synodal assembly.
"No synodal father has mentioned this point," said Cardinal Arinze, the co-president of the assembly. The so-called Tridentine rite was approved by Pope St. Pius V.
"If there are groups that desire the Tridentine Mass, this is already provided for," he said. "Bishops may allow it for groups."
"It is not a priority for the synod, as no one has spoken about it," the cardinal concluded. "The problem we have discussed is that many people don't go to Mass, and those that come don't understand -- they go to Communion but not to confession, as if they were immaculate."
Just as the official Novus Ordo differs from its actual application, a similar, but less obvious, distinction can be made between the Official TLM vs. the actual TLM.
The normative form of the TLM is the Solemn High Mass. However, the Low Mass and to a lesser extent, the Missa Cantata, make up 99% of all TLMs celebrated in actuality.
As for the proclamation of readings, there is a reasoning behind where they are done. The Epistle side of the altar (right side) faces South if the Church is correctly facing East. The South symbolizes the faithful, those to be instructed. The Gospel side, on the other hand, faces North, a symbolic direction of the pagans, the ones in need of conversion (i.e. the Gospel).
At a Solemn High Mass, the Deacon sings the Gospel facing North, but either at the foot of the Sanctuary or in the midst of the faithful from the center aisle.
The mumble-mumble Low Mass was something that the great pre-V2 Liturgical Movement was slowly but surely eradicating. A goodly number of TLMs today have moved well past that, whereby the Masses are audible and there is vocal participation on the part of the people.
Furthermore, it would be an ideal that today's "educated" Catholics be able to follow and understand the readings in the Latin language. The devout Jews can do the same for Hebrew, so why not the Catholics for Latin?
There's no other way around it. You cannot throw out the Novus Ordo without throwing out the whole of Apostolic authority within the Catholic Church,
Then why does that rule not apply to the Tridentine? Was it not unblemished? Was the Apostolic authority of every Pope from Pius V to Pius XII faulty?
That is the problem I have with the anti-Traditionalists.
To criticize the Novus Ordo Mass is to say that Christ lied and that the Church failed to protect what was most Sacred
Pope Benedict XXI as Cardinal Ratzinger has said:
[describing the de facto suppression of the traditional Latin Mass Pope Paul VI]-a breach into the history of the liturgy whose consequences could only be tragic.
He has also said,
I am convinced that the ecclesial crisis in which we find ourselves today depends in great part on the collapse of the liturgy.
and also referred to the NO as:
fabricated liturgy a banal, on-the-spot product.
So, are you accusing the pope of "say[ing] that Christ lied and that the Church failed to protect what was most Sacred"?
To say that the gates of Hell will not prevail over the Church is to say that In The End, GOD wins. Not that the Church will sail through history unmolested. Popes have acknowledged the need for reform from time to time as a remedy for dreeping secularism. Here we have a reform that embraces secularism and it shows. Christ, whom we all claim as Lord said that you CAN judge a tree by its fruit. Yet when we listen to Him and judge accordingly, you say No, no, ignore that or we are somehow wrong for obeying Christ in this regard. When Christ's words are changed from "for many" to "for all", one has to wonder why the Words of Christ have been changed? Is that seriously Guarding the deposit of Faith?
What we need is a Theologician.
Just to clarify. My "mumblemumble" comment wasn't directed at the Tridentine Liturgy as a whole. Just the Epistle and Gospel.
Generally, I don't have a problem from the homily forwards.
Bogus argument bordering on suggesting a promise of impeccability.
To suggest that the TLM is superior is not to claim that the NO is invalid or improper.
Polls show that about two thirds of Catholics do not believe in Transubstantiation and about ninety percent practice birth control, are they "really" there?
How do we know there wouldn't be more converts with the more ancient liturgy?
My point is that the reform that occurred was not what was forseen by the conciliar documents, which has been noted on occasion by the Holy Father when he was a cardinal.
Polls show that about two thirds of Catholics do not believe in Transubstantiation and about ninety percent practice birth control, are they "really" there?
They weren't there to "celebrate", they were there to "hear mass" and "to assist at" the Holy Sacrifice, and the priest was there "to offer" the Holy Sacrifice.
Cardinal Ratzinger not only endorses this book which is highly critical of the NO, but also praises the author.
Do you still think this statement of yours:
you cannot criticize the Novus Ordo Mass without criticizing the whole of the Church and the promise of Jesus Christ.
I know you were being sarcastic with the above statement. However, true liturgical reform was already underway. Pope St. Pius X began the process on an ecclesial level by encouraging frequent communion, as long as you have gone to Confession regularly, and lowering the First Communion age to the age of reason. Pope Pius XII continued it during his reign. It was all distorted with the abuses over the past decades.
I've seen enough well-done Novus Ordo Latin masses as you describe to know that they are still lacking what the Tridentine Mass has, and what the Mass among the Easterners has - awe, mystery, beauty, lyricality, even flow, etc. The Novus Ordo is too bowlderized even when said perfectly - too much has been stripped away, it is hery-jerky in its flow (especially with the Priest standing around listening to the Sanctus and Agnus Dei rather than praying privately, the Memorial Acclimation, the handshake of peace, the offertory procession, etc.), the saints are almost missing from it, and it frequently has strange choices of readings thrown together.
I would not be prudent for the Pope to "start with a clean slate" and "turn back the clock" to the pre-1965 Mass. On the surface, it would be seen as "counter-revolutionary," but in reality, it would be revolutionary, in the sense it would cause unneeded chaos in the Catholic Church. Changes need to be done carefully.
No one, at least not on this thread I think, has said that the NO was invalid. A satanic mass offered by a valid priest could be valid, in so much as transubstantiation occurs, but I wouldn't go to one.
Do you not find it curious that Ratzinger, after becoming Pope, has no intention of removing the Novus Ordo Mass? If Ratzinger thought of the Novus Ordo tragic in itself, I find it a very peculiar move as Supreme Pontiff to further insist on its usage despite objections by "Traditionalists."
I find many times that what people say one day contradicts what they will say another day. I find that many people are inclined to tailor their speech to appease the specific audience they are speaking to. I also find that many people often point to causes of a particular problem, say what they think should be done, but for any number of reasons don't do it.
That is due to poor catechizing, not poor liturgical practices. If the Bishops would consider becoming teachers of the faith, rather than administrators or CEO's, perhaps we'd see greater priority placed on instruction of the lay members. The people that go through RCIA are more cognizant of the faith than 90% of cradle Catholics. Who's to blame?
??? How were they doing that when they were praying the rosary or reading other books to pass the time away until their "duty" was completed? Saying the Mass in a foreign language does not increase participation by the congregation.
Haven't met a baptist kid yet that knows the difference between venial sin and mortal sin.
I think you base this assumption on a faulty perception of what "participation" is. No one participated more fully in the Holy Sacrifice than Our Blessed Mother, and "all" she did was remain silent at the foot of the cross.
Here is a more complete quote from when Pope Benedict wrote the preface to Msgr. Gambler's book- apparently it may only be in the French edition:
"J. A. Jungmann, one of the truly great liturgists of our time, defined the liturgy of his day, such as it could be understood in the light of historical research, as a 'liturgy which is the fruit of development' . . . What happened after the Council was something else entirely: in the place of the liturgy as the fruit of development came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over centuries and replaced it, as in a manufacturing process, with a fabrication, a banal on-the-spot product (produit banal de l'instant). [Introduction by Cardinal Ratzinger to La Reforme Liturgique en question (Le-Barroux: Editions Sainte-Madeleine), 1992, pp. 7-8.]
Very well put...
The following excerpt is from the presentation delivered by H.E. Most. Rev. George Cosmas Zumaire LUNGU, Bishop of Chipata (ZAMBIA)
"Still on the topic on participation of the laity, and this time through music, songs (art.61) and the use of Latin (at international meetings)(art.62), my impression about these articles is that they do not seem to reflect contributions from some mission countries like Zambia. I find this part of the document to be over-optimistic about the organ, Gregorian chant and even the use of Latin at international meetings in an attempt to meet the needs of the people of all time and places. My proposal is that we should not go back to making these instruments of worship universal. Our consideration of our cultural items should not be in comparison to, or in relation to either the organ, Gregorian chant or Latin, although they could still be treated as options for those who find them helpful. Communication and participation is vital in every liturgical celebration including the Eucharistic celebration. Our hope lies in the future and not in the past."
Granted, this is only one bishop's presentation but I have read through those delivered by many of the bishops and not one of them suggested a return to the TLM.
As an outside observer, there is NOTHING SPIRITUAL about the LANGUAGE OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE! If Catholics want a universal language, they can always opt for Aramaic (the language He spoke) or English (the most commonly spoken and understood language on the planet).
Cdl. Mahony would likely say much the same; would you believe him?
It's not just the use of the vernacular that's being objected to, the whole mass was changed. However if you are interested to know the benefits of retaining Latin, here you go:
No one made such a claim. Latin is still used as a working language of the Catholic Church is because it is a dead language, meaning the definition of its words are fixed, helping to communicate precise theological terms and concepts.
I agree that most of the rituals from Pre-Vatican II (the sequel!) should have been retained, but the ONLY negative of getting rid of the Language of the ROMAN EMPIRE is the lack of a universal lingua franca. As I said, the Church in that case could use Aramaic or English. The latter is unlikely due to certain Euro-Peons at the Vatican who have a cultural prejudice against "Anglo Saxons."
I like to refer to the Latin fetishists as "Jeromites" because if it weren't for St. Jerome, there would be no scripture in Latin.
[sigh] You didn't read the article that I posted a link to did you?
I no longer have a dog in this fight, although much of my family does.
OK but you still want to offer an opinion, don't you think it would be better to offer an informed opinion rather than an uninformed opinion? I provided a way for you to inform yourself, yet you seem to have ignored it.
Latin is the official language of the Catholic Church. The Pope speaks Latin fluently and has been known to give extemporaneous speeches in Latin. Are they "Jeromites"?
Yes, they are. Good people all, but Jeromites nonetheless.
It smacks of "cultural Catholicism" of the type that turned me away from Rome in the search of something more Christ centered and spiritual, rather than cultural or tribal.
"It is not a priority for the synod, as no one has spoken about it," the cardinal concluded.
Getting back to the original post, the fact that not one bishop has either recognized or spoken publicly about the traditional Latin Mass says more about the bishops than it does about the issue.
This is a real tragedy in the Church.
Perhaps. The Scripture doesn't detail what exactly she was doing. However, one presumes that she was striken with sorrow. Knowing what she was told regarding her Son and on what she pondered upon, it is likely that she was actively offering her own motherly ties up to the Father as a sacrifice in her own sense. Most mothers would desire to hold on to her son in such a situation. The Church teaches that Mary was abandoning this concept as an incredible spiritual sacrifice on her part.
This is quite different from a person who is present ONLY in body to what is happening in another language 50 yards away. In many cases, I think people were there merely to fulfill their "duty" to appear at Sunday Mass, rather than "participating" in that one-time offering of Christ on the Cross... That is the impression I get from when I was a youngster. The reading of other books or reciting the rosary during the Mass is pretty good evidence that a person's mind was elsewhere. Recall the Scriptures teach that our inner dispositions are much more important than our outer activities. Being in the building of the Church while the Mass is proceeding is not the same thing as participating in the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross.
Certainly the NO Mass with the 10+ Eucharistic ministers in shorts, sandals and T-Shirts...the priests who skip sections of the Mass like creeds and homilies...Churches with no kneelers etc. IT AIN'T PURE. I'm Fed up with it.
Now Tridentine, Marionite, any of it is Fine with me and I know their Masses are valid for each other. But I do belong to the Latin Rite, and I have to take care of my corner.
All this doesn't matter, as the word of God takes precedence above all, no matter what some "scholar" or politician in a robe says.
So you disagree with Pope Benedict? Pope Benedict wrote that the new Mass was the only significant change or break in the mass in the history of the Church and was very disturbing. But what does he know, right?
There is no pleasing everyone, so the priority should be on pleasing God.
The good thing about Latin is that it is no longer anybody's private language, because it is no longer a spoken language.
The first language of the Church was probably Greek, but most people of Jesus' time could get by in a little Greek and a little Latin, in addition to their local native language. With the dominance of Rome, Latin eventually took over and was not used only by pagans, but by every educated person in Europe. In fact, this was the case until very late: legal and official documents were written in Latin so that no local linguistic "overlays" could confuse the meaning.
That's the reason the official language of the Church is still Latin. You have to have a central starting point, and in many ways, it is now better to have one where the definitions are fixed and the resulting vernacular translations will therefore be more uniform, both linguistically and doctrinally.