Just as I expected, the WARNING: Novus Ordo post has generated a good number of thoughtful responses both on the blog and elsewhere, and I’m grateful for all of them.
In this post, I’ll attempt to address some of the arguments offered by those who took exception to the points I raised.
First, however, I want to make it clear that my intent isn’t so much to advise individuals about what they should or should not do, but rather to shine a light on the factors at play so they can discern for themselves.
Below, I will for the most part (but not entirely) draw from recent correspondence with a priest whose opinion I value.
He is a faithful priest with a love for Catholic doctrine who has celebrated both the Novus Ordo and the traditional Mass for many years. I think it’s fair to say that his opinions are an articulate representation of the high-end of “mainstream” Catholic thought on the matter; i.e., he puts forth the best arguments one is likely to encounter in opposition to my post.
With this in mind, let’s begin:
– Calling a valid Mass, in whatever form or rite, “poison” is blasphemous.
This, incidentally, is an exact quote from my priest interlocutor.
In response, I would ask those who consider this argument compelling to take a look at the admittedly extreme example provided in the video below. (I suspect that many of you are familiar with it.)
What you will see is a Mass featuring numerous so-called “lay ministers” in Halloween costumes, some of whom are “actively participating” by handing out Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, a cantor dressed as a witch, and a priest who puts on his Barney costume for the final blessing.
You will also hear the priest proudly announce in his sermon that the earlier Mass included an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion dressed as Satan:
Only at Corpus Christi [parish] does the Devil himself become a Eucharistic Minister. You knew we were twisted!
Now I ask you, does this Mass imbue those present with the Holy Catholic faith? Would you advise that one take their children or other impressionable loved ones to such a Mass? Are you willing to publicly affirm without qualification that this Mass is not a danger to souls? Is this Mass valid?
No well-formed Catholic can honestly answer anything but a resounding “no” to each one of these questions save for one; the last one.
In other words, one cannot deny that it most certainly is possible for a Mass to be both valid and poisonous.
Now, I can well imagine the rejoinder that this invites:
– Most Novus Ordo Masses are not Barney Masses, Clown Masses, Puppet Masses or anything of the sort!
This is true, but what we’ve established already is of paramount importance; namely, a valid Mass can also be poisonous. The question that is now coming into sharper focus is really this:
Can a valid Mass be poisonous apart from liturgical abuse?
To arrive at an answer, we need only use reason, logic and simple observation.
Let’s be honest; there’s a reason protestants are so much more comfortable at the Novus Ordo than the traditional Mass; the rite was crafted very specifically with this intent in mind, and it isn’t just the language.
Thus unceremoniously stripped from the new rite were those ancient elements that point to the Mass as true Sacrifice, its propitiatory nature, and the unique identity of the priest as he through whom the High Priest acts in persona Christi (e.g., the Offertory, the priest’s Confiteor, the Placeat tibi, just to name a few).
The “poison” associated with the rite that emerged (the Novus Ordo) is made entirely obvious simply by observing the results:
Not only are protestants rather comfortable at the new Mass; huge numbers of Catholics have found it very easy to replace it with the worship services of the heretics. (Again, observation alone is enough to confirm as much, but those interested in data might search the results of recent Pew Forum surveys.)
The reason this is the case is simple:
The sum total of those outward signs that make up the Novus Ordo are so deficient that they allow for a protestant understanding of the Mass itself (thus today’s shockingly low Mass attendance figures), of the nature of the priesthood (thus the current vocations crisis) and even the Eucharist (thus the staggering lack of faith in the Real Presence even among Mass-goers).
None of this has anything whatsoever to do with liturgical abuse.
– Is the Novus Ordo the only reason so many have lost the Catholic faith in substantial degree?
No, but when one considers that the post conciliar popes have repeatedly taught that the Mass is true Sacrifice, that the priest is ontologically and uniquely configured to Christ, and that the Eucharist is the Real Presence of Our Lord, one must acknowledge that what we are witnessing is lex orandi statuat legem credendi in action.
In other words, so powerful is the liturgy in establishing the law of belief that vast numbers of Novus Ordo Catholics do not believe what the popes, and even the new Catechism, teaches!
– If you are able to attend a valid Mass, you are under obligation to do so.
Again, I quote my priest interlocutor verbatim, but having no other choice but to admit that a valid Mass can indeed be poisonous, we can rephrase this statement to say:
“If you are able to attend a valid Mass, you are under obligation to do so even if it represents a danger to souls.”
I would hope that no one really believes that Holy Mother Church requires this of her children, but just in case…
I remind you that the supreme law of the Church is the salvation of souls.
With this in mind, it should be obvious that viewing our Sunday obligation strictly in terms of “validity” is insufficient.
The mere suggestion that Holy Mother Church would require us to uphold a precept even if it means exposing ourselves to a real and observable danger to the faith is untenable.
Indeed, the precept itself exists for the salvation of souls; not for its own sake.
– You make a false distinction between the Eucharist and “the rite.”
Not so, the precepts of the Church make that distinction. (See original post.)
Furthermore, the Eucharist can be received in a Communion Service or as part of a “sick call” in one’s home or in the hospital.
Clearly a distinction can be made between the rite and the Eucharist.
– The Mass is the one true sacrifice of the Cross, presented again in a mystical manner on the altar. If it is a valid sacrifice, and it is, since the Church cannot promulgate something evil in this regard, then you are under an obligation to assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
The first part of this objection is simply a more passionate reiteration of previous arguments focusing on validity to the exclusion of the dangers that are also present.
To give it additional consideration just the same, I would point out that if we defer to the objective truth that “the Mass is the one true Sacrifice” to the exclusion of any concern over the degree to which the signs in the rite serve to communicate that truth, we might well ask why even have rubrics at all?
Either the outward sings that express the mystery matter, or they don’t.
The second part is the more noteworthy; namely, the idea that “the Church cannot promulgate something evil.”
Again, I refer back to the original post and ask once more, is it really the case that Holy Mother Church has given the Novus Ordo to us, or did it come from the hands of weak and sinful men who abused their exalted positions?
I will take my initial comments a step further to say that I agree wholeheartedly with the argument put forth by Fr. Gregory Hesse:
Pope Paul VI was bound by Quo Primum. As such, the Novus Ordo represents a schismatic rite with a valid Eucharist. It is not, therefore, properly considered the rite that is given to us by Holy Mother Church.
In conclusion, I invite you to consider very carefully what Fr. Hesse has to say in the lecture given below.
(NOTE: It is 2 hours in length, every minute worthy of your attention, however, the most operative part begins at the 18:30 mark.)
Lou, you’re slipping off into strange territory. As deplorable and harmful as the liturgical abuses have been and are; and the cowardice and collusion of authority, one cannot describe a papally approved Missal as ” schismatic” by definition.
As much as I love and celebrate the TLM, it is unfair to highlight the worst and most blasphemous abuses as typical of the Pauline Mish-Mash.
Deplorable, vapid, ambiguous, yes. Schismatic? No.
The acts and gestures and words and comportment necessary for the proper worship of God and enactment of the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Altar, appear to have been, for the most part, removed from the new version of the Missal. For instance, what Archbishop Schneider says needs to be done immediately at a minimum to properly offer the Holy Mass as it ought to be offered, to give God His due worship, in accordance with the Faith, is not now provided for under the Missal, and is generally not done. The ten things than the Bishop says ought to be done can be found, inter alia, at the blog, OnePeterFive.
This appears on its face to be a most grave and fundamental error (with disastrous effects for the life of the Church and the salvation of souls) on the part of the Church authorities.
Was Pope Paul VI bound by Quo Primum?
What are, specifically, the things needed to make a Mass valid? Form? Matter? Intention?
If we could nail this down it would be very helpful. We may each of us have a different idea of this, and be talking at cross-purposes.
There is also the difference between licit and lawful, which always confuses me.
Such hard, deeply uncomfortable truths. Bravo!
On a related note, see: http://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/2013-0808-tofari-ordinary-form.htm
It was actually perfectly fair to use that Helloween service as his prime example, as he went on to cogently explain.
John Vennari posted a video on his Catholic Family News blog that is relevant to the issue of schism, and exactly who is schismatic. It must be said that I am not speaking for Mr. Vennari who did not broach the issue of schism in his video. The link to the video is provided here:
In the video, Mr Vennari makes reference to the constant teaching of the pre-conciliar Church that the Mass of the Roman Rite was to be in the official language of the Roman Church – i.e., Latin – and not the local vernacular. He made mention of one of the canons from the Council of Trent, the relevant parts of which are reproduced here:
On not celebrating the Mass every where in the vulgar tongue; the mysteries of the Mass to be explained to the people.
Although the mass contains great instruction for the faithful people, nevertheless, it has not seemed expedient to the Fathers, that it should be every where celebrated in the vulgar tongue. Wherefore, the ancient usage of each church, and the rite approved of by the holy Roman Church, the mother and mistress of all churches, being in each place retained; and, that the sheep of Christ may not suffer hunger, nor the little ones ask for bread, and there be none to break it unto them, the holy Synod charges pastors, and all who have the cure of souls, that they frequently, during the celebration of mass, expound either by themselves, or others, some portion of those things which are read at mass, and that, amongst the rest, they explain some mystery of this most holy sacrifice, especially on the Lord’s days and festivals.”
* * *
“CANON IX.–If any one saith, that the rite of the Roman Church, according to which a part of the canon and the words of consecration are pronounced in a low tone, is to be condemned; or, that the mass ought to be celebrated in the vulgar tongue only; or, that water ought not to be mixed with the wine that is to be offered in the chalice, for that it is contrary to the institution of Christ; let him be anathema.”
Mr. Vennari makes mention of several quotes from pre-conciliar Popes who spoke on the importance of Latin and the error of using the vernacular in the sacred rites of the Church. Thus the constant teaching of the successors of Peter prior to Paul VI was that the Mass of the Roman Rite is to be conducted in Latin and that it was an anathematized error to even say that the Mass ought to be celebrated in the vulgar (vernacular) tongue only.
Before celebrating the Novus Ordo Missae, were you made aware of Canon IX that anathematizes just saying that the “mass ought to be celebrated in the vulgar tongue only”, never mind actually saying the Mass in the vernacular? Was it ever explained to you why this anathema no longer applies? If it was explained to you why it no longer applies, what was the nature of the explanation?
These are serious questions, for if the anathema of Canon IX still applies, and it is actually the infallible teaching of the Holy Catholic Church that the Roman rite is to be conducted in Latin, isn’t really Pope Paul VI who is the schismatic, by arrogating to himself the authority to deviate from binding tradition and his fellow Popes?
Barbara, those (form of words, matter and intent) are the essential elements for the consecration of the bread and wine into the Blessed Sacrament to take place. And of course, it must be a priest ordained by a bishop. But that does not speak to the whole matter of the proper form, conduct, etc., of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, generally.
There is no difference between “licit” and “lawful”. “Licit” is the term conventionally used for the compliance with Church Law.
She might have been thinking of validity and liceity.
This is a very good encapsulation of the problem:
“The sum total of those outward signs that make up the Novus Ordo are so deficient that they allow for a protestant understanding of the Mass itself (thus today’s shockingly low Mass attendance figures), of the nature of the priesthood (thus the current vocations crisis) and even the Eucharist (thus the staggering lack of faith in the Real Presence even among Mass-goers).”
This is why, in addition to its being consciously concocted as a Protestant and ecumenical service, I believe that the Novus Ordo service is inherently irreverent; that is, irreverent whether or not it’s committed in Latin and entirely according to its rubrics. Its deficiencies make it unjust and, strictly speaking, evil.
To say a Roman Rite can be papally approved in its ‘changes’ is oxymoronic. If you think Fr Hesse didn’t argue the point clearly enough…
Except what is the purpose in implementing these “10 elements of renewal” proposed by Bishop Schneider? I just see it as a means to throw a bit of “window dressing” on the Novus Ordo, and by doing so, would only prolong that which really needs to take place. Since I agree with the canonist Fr. Gregory Hesse that the Novus Ordo IS a schismatic rite, it therefore needs to be abolished, and only a complete restoration to Tradition and the True Mass is the ultimate solution.
Pope Innocent III: “If a future pope was to change all the rites of the sacraments, he would put himself outside the Church.” Reiterated by at the Council of Florence Eugene IV held the same; the same was made Dogma at Trent: If anyone (whosoever – including the Pope) was to say that the Traditionally handed down Rites…can be changed or shortened…may he be cursed…” Montini was and remains ‘outside the Church’ – and surely also his ‘rites’.
The issue is Church, according to Fr Hesse. The Church can do this and cannot do that – the Church has jurisiction by virtue of Tradition. Therefore those who say that SSPX etc cannot absolve sins – wrong. Any VALID priest can give confession according Church jurisdicitoin. A valid priest can be deemed ‘illegitimate’ by a fraudulant Vatican. I wish he had looked at the changes in the Rites of Ordination in any depth which Fr Hesse, rest his soul, did not. Perhaps a bit close to home for him. These Rites, like the Mass are new, and new against the teachings of previous Popes. When it comes to investigating things raised as doubtful, and specifically ‘postive doubt’, this constitutes reason to find an answer. The Montini Rites constitute positive doubt. Fr Hesse makes it clear, the rites (of ordination) are, like the mass, schismatic, illigetimate, but possibly valid – not a good enough ‘conclusion’. Although he calls the Montini Rites of ordination ‘schismatic’, he then doubts the wisdom of Pius XII for defining infallibly the Rites of Ordination in the Roman Rite. Fr Hesse is getting shifty here. If we are bound to our own Rite, then Novus Ordo priests should reject the interruption of the Montini Rite – it is not our Rite, or the Rites of the consecrated ground of our Churches or the Tradition of our parents. Fr Hesse goes on to say that the Novus Ordo Rite is schismatic is clear and that Montini contradicted many Popes in changing the Rite – also blatantly schismatic. That Pius XII dogmatically bound the Roman Rite from change is clear. But then Fr Hesse endows the new Rites with validity because they are not Roman? (yet Montini looking to Eastern Latin Rites, continued to change those Rites beyond the bounds of what kept the Eastern Rite valid?!) Let us remember Pius XII said that the schismatic, heretic and apostate is outside the Church…
Fr Hesse’s skipping over the matter and form as the Rites of Ordination doesn’t do them justice. These Rites are not opaque or pliable – they are what they are because of centuries of the works of the Holy Ghost. “Matter: something or action your senses can perceive (pouring water, bread and wine, etc.) FORM: the words recited that actually produce the sacramental effect (“I baptize you…” “This is My body…,” etc.) Each sacramental rite, no matter how many other prayers and ceremonies the Church has prescribed for it, contains at least one sentence that either Catholic theologians or authoritative Church pronouncements have designated as its ESSENTIAL sacramental form.’ this article addresses it without interruptions: http://www.traditionalmass.org/images/articles/NewEpConsArtPDF2.pdf
Dogmatic Papal teachings…the Pope cannot change the Rites. The ‘Old’ Mass ‘of all time’ must be said by all Priests. It is the Faith of the Church that a Pope cannot mess with the Faith – if he does so he calls down curses upon himself – dogma.
A furture pope can sweep the mess of VII and the Novus Ordo away: Pius VI – Condemns all the sins of the synod of Pistoia in an Encylical to the Faithful.
Fr Hesse finshes with great clarity: Vatican II is heresy, he quotes document after document, eg. Gaudium et Spes 12 “According to the almost unanimous opinion of believers and unbelievers alike, all things on earth should be related to man as their center and crown.” Outright antichristism.
Fr Hesse sums up: A future Pope will nullify VII and the Novus Ordo Rites – ALL OF THEM.
PS. Best Fr Hesse ‘off the cuff’ quote: “[In response to the N.O. ‘stepford-wives’ who ask why we reject the N.O.] Because I believe your mass is illegitimate and I also believe you are a heretic and schismatic and I also believe you are a demonic help to the [luciferian liberals]”.
If there is such a thing as a Francis Effect, I think the subject matter raised in these posts by Louie and by Mundabor can be considered substantive proof of its existence.
Here’s my take. With all the NOVELTY that the Faithful have been witness to over these last two years, a very wide cross section of them are finally not only beginning to identify the real problems with the Catholic Church and their root cause, but also starting to address them. These posts are a perfect example of this.
And yes, the main problem is the Second Vatican Council in general. But the most immediate threat that VII has posed on the salvation of souls is through the NO rite. We must always be cognizant of this fact. Here is how Benedict XVI described the NO, himself a participant in and witness to this travesty:
“The liturgical reform, in its concrete realization, has distanced itself even more from its origin. The result has not been a reanimation, but devastation. In place of the liturgy, fruit of a continual development, they have placed a fabricated liturgy. They have deserted a vital process of growth and becoming in order to substitute a fabrication. They did not want to continue the development, the organic maturing of something living through the centuries, and they replaced it, in the manner of technical production, by a fabrication, a banal product of the moment.”
(Ratzinger in Revue Theologisches, Vol. 20, Feb. 1990, pgs. 103-104)
So whatever individual opinions that we all may have about the NO itself, I would advise these personal opinions not get in the way for working for what should be the end goal for all Faithful, which is to eradicate this “fabricated, banal product of the moment” from the Universal Church and help in restoring all things in Christ.
Excuse the self serving nature of the below text, but it is critical to understand just how fabricated and banal the NO in fact is. To this end, on my blog I have a page dedicated to the background of this “fabricated rite” for all those would like to familiarize themselves with just how fabricated it really is. The link is here: https://sarmaticusblog.wordpress.com/anatomy-of-the-destruction-of-the-sacred-liturgy/
Closing, from what I see, I think that the Holy Spirit is working to address this issue identified above. For those who visit Catholic websites and blogs daily, you will notice a continuous stream of reports of parishes and churches re-introducing the Immemorial Mass of All Ages. The last example is the Cathedral in Albany. Another example is the dynamic growth that the TLM is having in the homeland of the modernist JPII. Here is a page of just one organization dedicated to this Restoration effort: http://arscelebrandi.pl/?wref=bif
And please keep in mind that his process is happening in the face of daily assaults on it from the highest levels of the church hierarchy and the bishop of Rome himself. And in the face of all this, the TLM is advancing by leaps and bounds. If this is not proof of the real Francis Effect, I don’t know what it.
Restoration is what is necessary. To teach that the ‘Household of the Faith’ has become the tavern of the prodigals is a lie, and renders the ‘Household of the Faith’, useless; such a teaching would have us bound to feeding on ‘the husks of swine…devoured by a spiritual hunger’ – having no shepherd directing us towards Our Father’s House.
PS. in such a modernist scenario, without a ‘Father’s House’, a shepherd is pointless as well.
Sorry for providing inaccurate information above.
I wrote the following: “The last example is the Cathedral in Albany”.
This information is not correct. The latest example is from the Basilica and National Shrine of Our Lady of Lebanon. Here is the link:
They are coming fast and furious and its hard to keep up but…a big Mea Culpa from my end is still in order. 😉
Hello Barbara. The Matter, at least in the Eucharist, is the water wine and bread, even the breath of the Priest. The Form is the words and signs employed in the Mystery of Transubstantiation. Words are basically the Form. I tried to leave a link but it wouldn’t take.
However, here is a basic look at the contrasts of the Old Mass as opposed to the New Order Mass:
An in depth look at the question of Novus Ordo ‘validity’:
For those inerested here is a series of sermons on the authentic Mass by Bishop Sanborn:
There are four more. Scroll down on this page:
to Mass, The (2) (3) (4) etc.
I have for some time taken issue with Fr. Hesse’s interpretation of the matter of Quo Primum. I am all in favor of the traditional liturgy, and abolishing the Novus Ordo eventually, but I don’t think that argument can be made on the basis of Quo Primum. In this article, some reasons for this position are summed up:
I quote one part:
“First, Pius V’s legislation was a disciplinary act that could technically be modified or even revoked by future popes. Thus, to call upon Quo Primum in order to establish in principle that the Tridentine liturgy must not be changed is a flawed argument. This principle cannot be drawn from one particular act of mutable legislation. Now, as I said before, some have argued that Quo Primum amounts to a dogmatic declaration, and was therefore binding even on future popes. I believe this sort of argument was proposed by the likes of the late Fr. Gregory Hesse. But this cannot be, because that would mean that the previous 1600 years of liturgical development prior to Trent was a process of continual dogmatic revelation, which is impossible: for the Church teaches that revelation ended with the death of the last apostle. A dogmatic declaration can only be of a truth or practice that is part of the immutable deposit of faith that was bequeathed to the Church by God, through Christ and the apostles. After that, there is no new revelation (though there may be changes in the manner of communicating that revelation). So it is impossible for Quo Primum to have dogmatically declared, all of sudden, that in the 16th century, the liturgy could not be changed, when for the past 1600 years it had been changing.”
I see these points as being proffered as the absolute minimum to ensure that the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is not in clear opposition to the Deposit of Faith, justice, charity and truth.
It seems to me your argument does not follow if one makes a distinction between changes in a liturgical rite of Mass that are of a substantial or intrinsic nature vs. those of an accidental or extrinsic nature. Fr. Chad Ripperger, for example, citing liturgists like Fr. Klaus Gamber, explains that what constitutes a rite of Mass are the Offeratory, Consecration and Communion of the Priest. If any of these is different, then there is a different rite. While it is arguable all of these elements changed in the Pauline Mass, it is most obviously the case with the Offeratory, which is entirely new. Furthermore, both rites, while having similarities, developed entirely independently, the Pauline rite being formulated last century, which again is a sign of a different and in this case new rite. There is strong evidence to suggest that the liturgists involved wanted, in fact, a new rite to suit there ecumenical sensibilities and agenda.
The fact that the Traditional Roman rite developed organically over time, however, does not mean that there was a series of substatial changes in rite over time. Rather, there was always one Roman rite that changed in certain incidentals over time, but it is substantially the same rite we have today. The same rite that Louie is arguing the successors of Peter are bound to.
And so Father Hesse very strongly advises his listeners to stay away from a Novus Ordo Mass, where I totally believe I am entering into the representation of the Redeeming Sacrifice at Calvary, then receive the Body , Blood Soul and Divinity of Jesus…all the while in His Real Presence….mmm…what to do????
On reflection, thank you for sharing these interesting opinions…I will keep you all in my prayers…on my way to Stations of the Cross, then evening Mass…my new resolution to spend more time reading Scripture and the Saints
The Novus Ordo, I believe, is having agonal respirations. I have a hunch it may be over sooner than we all think. I belong to a suburban NO parish in a moribund diocese and the pews are populated by grey heads and their grandchildren in large part. We have tons of Eucharistic ministers! The liturgical committee is currently eliciting suggestions from parishioners on how the liturgy can be improved to make it more “appealing to parishioners while giving glory to God “. I almost busted out laughing when that was one of the final announcements at the end of Mass last Sunday. They still don’t get it, but the desperation is palpable.
But the offertory prayers of the Tridentine rite did not always exist. Of course there has always been a rite of offertory (the act of offering), which is essential, but not the texts that we know in the Tridentine rite. Any historian will tell you those were late additions from the Middle Ages, during which period there were many forms of them. So obviously organic development did in fact include the development of those prayers. The text of those prayers then is not intrinsic, but extrinsic and accidental; and hence it cannot be the object of any dogmatic definition. I maintain that Quo Primum could not be a dogmatic definition, but a disciplinary action. Of course, the prayers of the Novus Ordo are problematic, but not because they violated the rite promulgated by Quo Primum, as is argued in the article I linked.
Yes, Sobieski, There has to be intrinsic elements of the rite of The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass that implicitly may not be changed as to do so would contradict or transgress the immutable truths of Divine Revelation kept in the Deposit of Faith (and indeed natural justice and truth). The Holy Rite of the Mass cannot be separated from the Deposit of the Faith; the whole rite flows from the doctrine of the Faith and must conform thereto.
Maestro: How can you conduct this discussion without any of the historical context (except that which you spring piecemeal on the unsuspecting)?
Let’s start with some context. The Council of Trent – convened to combat protestant heresies INCLUDING THOSE CONCERNING THE NATURE OF THE MASS – occurred from 1545 to 1563. Quo Primum was issued not long thereafter in 1570. In fact, Session XXII of the Council of Trent treated of the subject of the mass itself. The chapters and cannons from Session XXII are reproduced here:
So the Church Fathers at the Council of Trent described what the Mass was, and in the Canons what the mass was not or cannot become. For example, Canon III anathematizes heretical conceptions of the Mass:
“CANON III.–If any one saith, that the sacrifice of the mass is only a sacrifice of praise and of thanksgiving; or, that it is a bare commemoration of the sacrifice consummated on the cross, but not a propitiatory sacrifice; or, that it profits him only who receives; and that it ought not to be offered for the living and the dead for sins, pains, satisfactions, and other necessities; let him be anathema.”
So to repeat, in Session XXII the Church Fathers in some detail described what the Mass is, and anathematized certain heretical conceptions of the Mass. e.g., those imagined by Lucifer’s reprobate mind. It would seem that Session XXII of the Council of Trent therefore foreclosed forever after conceivable developments in the Mass; e.g., at some point in the future a Pope could not promulgate a Mass that was merely a commemmoration of Our Lord’s sacrifice (or was so stripped down that it was possible a group of attendees could interpret the Mass as mere commemoration).
So when Pope St. Pius V came to promulgate Quo Primum a Council of the Church had already been convened to promulgate dogmas on what the nature of the Mass is, and to issue anathemas on what the Mass was not and could not become in the future.
In view of this context, the quote from your “authority” leaves a helluva lot out of the discussion, don’t you think?
In reality, the situation faced by Pope St. Pius V in the time after the Council of Trent was the Church had dogmatized in some respects the nature of the Mass, and also anathematized heretical conceptions of the Mass. Accordingly, as a Good Shepherd of the flock, Pope St. Pius V had to make sure that the faithful were not shanghaied into Masses offered by heretics who did not agree with the decrees of the Council of Trent The Missal issued at the time comported with the traditional conception of the Mass, and hence the decrees of the Council of Trent. By issuing Quo Primum which required the use of the Missal, Pope St. Pius V was insuring that the Mass offered to the faithful would comply with the decrees of the Council of Trent.
Now, flash forward to 1969, and the Missal of Paul VI. Did Paul VI ever certify to the faithful that the Mass contained in his Missal did not run afoul of the decrees of the Council of Trent? To my knowledge he did not. In fact one of the very first statements made by Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci in their Intervention was that the Mass set forth in Paul VI’s missal deviated in its conception from the decrees of the Council of Trent! Apparently, Paul VI was the first papal positivist – the first Pope who acted as if he was not bound by tradition and the infallible magisterium of the Church and acted as if he could issue decrees and establish disciplines even if they contradicted tradition!
Then on your view, what constitutes the essence of a liturgical rite that subsists through organic developments over time? It seems to me you are saying there is no continuity in the Roman rite. On that view, how do you avoid liturgical positivism?
To the contrary, liturgists of weighty authority, like Fr. Gamber, see the Pauline Mass as a new liturgical rite, both because in certain essentials it is different from what came before and because it did not develop organically from it. It seems to me Pope Benedict said something similar when he called the new liturgy a banal, on-the-spot fabrication or something to that effect.
I am not a liturgical expert, but the Pauline offertory eliminates the notions of sacrifice and propitiation even if the texts in the traditional Mass developed over time. So in that respect, at least, I would think it differs from everything the came before because the Pauline offertory was designed to not be offensive to non-Catholics.
That said, I am not unsympathetic to the argument in your blog post, but it seems to me there has to be certain essential elements within the Roman liturgical Tradition that underlie the process of organic development so that everything is tied together in one and the same rite. Otherwise, it seems to me we are left with liturgical positivism, which plays precisely into the modernist agenda wherein everything is relative and mutable.
To illustrate my point, Fr. Cekada argues for problems with the Pauline offertory in his Youtube video “Teilhard’s Offertory: The Preparation of the Gifts.” It is evident that it diverges widely from that of the traditional Mass.
(Disclaimer: I am not a sedevacantist and do not adhere to or recommend that viewpoint, but the video above discusses problems with the new Mass, specifically the offertory, and not sedevacantism. If anyone is experiencing difficulties with sedevacantism, then I would recommend articles by Robert Siscoe which can easily be found online.)
Traditional Catholic teaching:
The Church cannot approve of a disciplinary measure that is harmful in the positive sense, it is infallible in this regard. Look this up, if you divert from this teaching you are a heretic.
The Novus Ordo cannot be a poison because that would mean it is a positive harm.
Now the Church can approve of something harmful in the “negative” sense; the approval of inferior rites that do not contain anything contrary to the divinely revealed faith but can lower the defenses against error and indirectly lead to the weakening of the faith e.g the Novus Ordo.
Poison directly kills, it is thus analogous to positive harm.
It would be more accurate to say that the Novus Ordo is like a castle that has its moat drained, taking away one of its defenses and hence making it more susceptible to harm. The draining of the moat does not directly destroy the castle (thus a negative harm) but can lead to, i.e. the attackers who will bring it down (positive harm).
Priests and others can be a positive harm as their intentions, the way they celebrate, and their homilies can do this but the Church can never approve of a positive harm. Perhaps the use of the word “poison” is ambiguous?
I promise this is the last time I’ll bring this up: If St John Paul was a saint during his reign, why didn’t he fix the schismatic rite? If the toxic nature of the NO is obvious even to laymen, why is it hidden from highly trained theologians? Has the Pope (JP2) flunked theology? Shall we say that he and Good Pope John are now the patron saints of the obtuse, proving that incompetent naifs can achieve beatitude?
I don’t find the NO toxic, merely annoying. I like to think it shows how stones can be made to cry out ‘hosana,’ and how His banquet hall will be full. Having a ridiculous rite like the NO actually helps save souls, since only a true religion could attract followers for 45 years with such an insipid ritual. With TLM, a scoffer might say that Catholics attend Mass merely because of their magnificent churches and their majestic rites, and a tradition of 2000 years. But now that churches are gymnasiums and the NO is painfully embarrassing, the scoffer must come to terms with the substance of the One True Faith, not merely its appearance.
All of the rites of Holy Mass (Roman, Gallican etc.) from what I recall (and please know I’m no expert so please confirm this statement) were ALL Apostolic i.e. they originated during the time of the Apostles, and are therefore Dogma not Discipline. The Mass itself is Dogmatic since the Apostles were “breaking the Bread” since Day 1 after Pentecost. Just b/c we don’t have them in written form until Pope Gregory doesn’t mean they weren’t in use, just like Scripture wasn’t formulated until almost the 5th century. This is why the people would go wild if even a Pope attempted to alter it in any way. That certain elements organically grew from the original is similar to the other Dogmatic teachings on say the Immaculate Conception. But what Pope Paul VI did was pull a whole new rite out of his ear in order to appease heretics. That’s an abuse of authority and a schismatic rite if I ever saw it.
I’m no Liturgical expert either, but you just don’t make up a Rite of the Church from thin air almost 2000 years later. “By their fruits you shall know them” sums up the proof of a schismatic rite right there. If anything I think this discussion will help all of us (myself esp) learn about liturgical history. I’ve been reading the short brief done by Michael Davies. Very interesting: http://www.catholictradition.org/Eucharist/mass-history.htm
There is, of course, a definite form that can be called the Roman Rite, from which the Novus Ordo is a grave departure, I will be the first to argue that. The continuity of the Roman Rite is defined by the Roman Canon, parts of the order of mass, the propers, the calendar, and the office – all of which are affected in the Novus Ordo. The Tridentine offertory prayers, strangely enough, represent a somewhat later addition to the Roman Rite. But my point was that that rite, simply as a rite, cannot be the object of any dogmatic declaration; so Quo Primum is not a dogmatic declaration about it. Nor was Quo Primum a dogmatic declaration about the bare essentials of what we call the Mass, as instituted by Christ – and the Novus Ordo still retains those bare essentials. Quo Primum was a prudential measure during a time of crisis, that provided a needed stability by forbidding – temporarily – all change in the liturgy, including what previously was its organic development. But because it was only temporary, the Novus Ordo is not wrong because it violates Quo Primum, but for other reasons – it violates tradition (different than Quo Primum), it breaks organic development, it destroys the theological symbolism of the liturgy, etc.
I don’t necessarily disagree with anything you say, but I would disagree with the conclusion (if indeed this is your conclusion) that the Novus Ordo is wrong because it violates the document Quo Primum. It may indeed – I certainly think it does, in many ways – violate what Quo Primum sought to protect, namely liturgical tradition and the doctrine of the Mass. But Quo Primum was protecting these things according to the protection which they needed in those historical circumstances. Since the KIND of protection Pius V provided was based on the historical circumstances, we cannot formulate any PRINCIPLE, purely on the basis of Quo Primum, that the liturgy may not be changed or whatever. Pius V could only intend his legislation (namely that the liturgy may not be changed in any way whatsoever) to be temporary, and not binding on other popes – or else he himself would not have changed the Missal later (he added a feast). So because it was only temporary and not binding on future popes, Paul VI did not violate Quo Primum per se. He may have violated the doctrine of the Mass, as taught by the Council of Trent, or the liturgical tradition of 1500 years – but that is a different argument. The doctrine of the Mass and the liturgical tradition of 1500 simply do not equal Quo Primum.
Maestro: I’m surprised you even returned to regale us with your modernism. I’m glad it wasn’t me who said something like this:
“But Quo Primum was protecting these things according to the protection which they needed in those historical circumstances.”
That is offensive to pious ears and also illogical.
First, your argument implicitly suggests that the negative circumstances facing Pope St. Pius V at the time he promulgated Quo Primum either could be expected to disappear in the future, or in fact did disappear at some point in time after Quo Primum was promulgated.
Why would Pope St. Pius V expect heresies concerning the Mass that were being advanced during and prior to his reign to disappear at some point in the future? Whole nations were disappearing into heresy and adopting heretical rites at this time. With this as the historical backdrop, why would Pope St. Pius V assume that the protestant revolt was a temporary revolt, and limit the Bull to just his reign? The protestant revolt was a continuing circumstance at his time, and so why wouldn’t he promulgate Quo Primum into perpetuity as a continuing protection of the faithful?
Now what actually happened? Did the protestant heresies concerning the Mass ever go away? They most certainly have not disappeared. In fact, the protestants continually made the same arguments against the Tridentine liturgy from the time of the revolt until some of them got a hand in concocting a new mass that was foisted on the Catholic faithful in 1969. At that point, when the Catholics were now saying a Mass that was acceptable to them, some of them stopped attacking this new-fangled “Catholic” so-called “Mass”.
So, just from an historical perspective, the circumstances calling for the Bull have never disappeared since the Bull was promulgated! In fact, had Pope St. Pius V clearly made the Bull on its face temporary, it could be said that he was negligent in the performance of his office because he left an open door through which the Church could be attacked.
Second. how exactly can an attack be mounted on the Mass if the Mass is said according to the Missal that Pope St. Pius V promulgated? Is it your argument that the Mass said according to Pope St. Pius V’s Missal can become defective or invalid according to some future circumstance? How would that happen? Pope St. Pius V basically certified that the Mass set forth in his Missal was a valid mass that fully complied with the decrees of the Council of Trent. Again, how could a Mass said faithfully according to the formula set forth in the Missal of Pope St. Pius V become defective?
Third, I don’t understand how you can make an argument that changing the Calendar set forth in the Missal is tantamount to a change in the Missal without blushing. Was the Missal promulgated because the protestants were heretically changing the calendar? No, the heretics were changing the substance of the Mass. In other words, the change in the calendar was merely an accidental change and not a substantial change.
I think you are misunderstanding me. Yes, it is altogether possible that the circumstances surrounding Pius V’s legislation still exist, but that is not enough to establish that a change such as Paul VI’s is wrong IN PRINCIPLE. A principle does not arise from circumstance. Since, as I believe, Quo Primum was not doctrine, but discipline – which, unlike doctrine, is malleable according to circumstance (therefore I am no modernist) – neither then can it be wrong IN PRINCIPLE to change the missal in the way that Quo Primum forbade. Quo Primum forbids any change in the missal WHATSOEVER, with no distinction between accidental and substantial. That includes changes in the calendar. But even so, not all the changes that followed Quo Primum (before Vatican II) were calendar changes; many were ritual changes. The Divine Office changed drastically under Pius X, and the Office was protected by an exactly similar legislation as the Mass (the document Quod a Nobis is to the Breviary as Quo Primum is to the Missal – look it up). Also the rites of Holy Week changed drastically under Pius XII. If you want to say that Paul VI violated Quo Primum, you must say likewise of Pius XII – there is no way out of that, logically. Personally, I do not maintain that any of these Pope violated Quo Primum, because, as I said, Quo Primum was merely disciplinary and not doctrinal, and so it does not bind future popes.
“Calling a valid Mass, in whatever form or rite, “poison” is blasphemous.”
## Blasphemous or not, it is poison; that is an excellent description of it. One cannot deny that X is the case just because it may be offensive to say X – what matters is what is true. So if that is a blasphemous thing to say, so be it. The priest’s comment fails completely to engage with why the criticism is made – some of us prefer to deal with such reasons, rather than to ignore horrible facts lest we say the “wrong” thing. Pious wishful thinking is no substitute for facing up to reality.
Besides, it’s a bit late to say that calling the Pauline Mess “poison” is “blasphemous” – the advocates of the PM have been only too ready to pour scorn, contumely, & insult upon the Traditional Mass these last 40 years; so it is a bit much to get in a snit when Catholics do no worse in return. One is tempted to call such a complaint of “blasphemy” a little bit hypocritical.
How would the priest describe a clown Mass ? A teddy bear Mass ? “Masses” offered using “cookies” rather than valid matter ? Enquiring minds would like to know.
What is to stop a bad hierarchy & a bad Pope inflicting poisonous rites on the Faithful ? The notion that this cannot happen is irrational & self-serving nonsense, because it is abundantly clear by Catholic theological & doctrinal standards that those rites are theologically dangerous.
Either the Tradition of the Church is fallible old hat; or the sub-Catholic new rites are “poison”; or the CC has as much theological competence as a dinner of Rotarians. Since Christ & the Apostles warn of coming false teachers, and since most heretics & schismatics have been clergy, it is entirely believable that the hierarchy for the last 50 years – obviously including the Popes – has been crammed with false teachers. If the Popes & their fellows want to depart from the Faith, they have no right to drag any of the Faithful down with them. It is high time the Popes stopped confusing themselves with Almighty God, & learned some humility for a change.
Maestro: Sorry for the quip about modernism. The point I wanted to make is that the so-called liturgical reformers made similar-sounding arguments about the alleged inability of the mass of all ages to meet the needs of modern man. What they really meant was that were certain presumptions undergirding the Mass the liturgical reformers NO LONGER BELIEVED IN so they jettisoned what they considered objectionable. For example, even thought the Conciliar Popes argue that the Mass is still a propitiatory sacrifice that re-presents in the present time Our Lord’s sacrifice on Cavalry, some of the liturgical reformers actually questioned transubstantiation and were looking for a new explanation of exactly what happens during the Eucharistic rite. So it can quickly become a slippery slope when you argue the Church must change to meet the challenges of the time. What starts as a disciplinary change can quickly morph either intentionally or unintentionally into a doctrinal change.
I understand what you are saying about Quo Primum being merely a disciplinary law that did not bind future Popes. But this is what Michael Davies had to say about your arguments about what happened after 1570:
“Revisions after 1570
There have been revisions since the reform of St. Pius V, but until the changes which followed Vatican II these were never of any significance. In some cases what are now cited as ‘reforms’ were mainly concerned with restoring the Missal to the form codified by St. Pius V when, largely due to the carelessness of printers, deviations had begun to appear. This is particularly true of the ‘reforms’ of Popes Clement VIII set out in the Brief Cum sanctissimum of 7 July 1604, and of Urban VIII in the Brief Si quid est, 2 September 1634. The ‘reforms’ of these two Popes have been used as a precedent for the reform of Pope Paul VI, but it is only necessary to glance through the Briefs of these popes, to see how utterly nonsensical such a comparison is.
St. Pius X made a revision not of the text but of the music. The Vatican Gradual of 1906 contains new, or rather restored, forms of the chants sung by the celebrant, therefore to be printed in the Missal. In 1955 Pope Pius XII authorized a rubrical revision, chiefly concerned with the calendar. In 1951 he restored the Easter Vigil from the morning to the evening of Holy Saturday, and, on 16 November 1955, he approved the Decree Maxima redemptionis, reforming the Holy Week ceremonies. These reforms were welcomed and have been highly praised by some of the traditionalists, who implacably opposed to the reform of Pope Paul VI.
Pope John XXIII also made an extensive rubrical reform which was promulgated on 25 July 1960 and took effect from 1 January 1961. Once again this was concerned principally with the calendar. In none of these reforms was any significant change made to the Ordinary of the Mass. It is thus unscholarly, dishonest even, to attempt to refute traditionalist criticisms of the New Mass by citing changes made in the Missal by the popes just named.
However, the unbroken tradition of East and West for over 1600 years, that the Eucharistic Liturgy should never be subjected to radical reforms—–although it might develop through the addition of new prayers and ceremonies—–was breached in 1970 when the newly composed Missal of Pope Paul VI was published, the New Order of Mass having been published in 1969.”
So it seems for the most part the Popes until very recently acted as if Quo Primum was binding because very little was changed in the Missal of 1570. A hat tip to MMC for the net cite.
Maestro, what is your opinion on the continued validity of the Canons from Session XXI?. For example, is it still an anathematized error to say that the Mass of the Roman Rite ought to be said in the vernacular only?
That should be “XXII”.
Re-reading Fr. Gamber, it seems to me that his explanation of the matter undermines your argument. Reading Quo Primum in light of his commentary, I don’t see a problem with Fr. Hesse’s thesis:
With respect to discipline and the liturgy, for example, he says:
“[T]he term disciplina in no way applies to the liturgical rite of the Mass, particularly in light of the fact that the popes have repeatedly observed that the rite is founded on apostolic tradition. For this reason alone, the rite cannot fall into the category of ‘discipline and rule of the Church.’ To this we can add that there is not a single document, including the Codex Iuris Canonici, in which there is a specific statement that the pope, in his function as the supreme pastor of the Church, has the authority to abolish the traditional liturgical rite…
“As we examine the issue of unlimited papal authority and how it relates to the authority to change the established liturgical rite, if the statement made by Suarez still is not entirely convincing [viz., that a pope would be schismatic who changed all the liturgical rites of the Church that have been upheld by apostolic tradition], this argument just may be: the already established fact that, until Pope Paul VI, there has not been a single pope who introduced the type of fundamental changes in liturgical forms which we are now witnessing. In fact, we must note that even small changes in the liturgy introduced by a pope have never been readily accepted.” (Gamber, The Reform of the Roman Liturgy, p. 34-6)
Here is is not discussing Quo Primum, but in light of these comments regarding liturgy and discipline, I find it hard to think this document was merely of a disciplinary nature.
As regards organic development, he says earlier:
“In his article [‘Four Hundred Years of the Tridentine Mass?’], Rennings has picked on a traditionalist weakness: the expression ‘Tridentine Mass’ or ‘Mass of St. Pius V.’ In the strict sense there is no ‘Tridentine Mass,’ for, at least at the conclusion of the Council of Trent, there was no creation of a new Mass order; and the ‘Missal of St. Pius V’ is nothing else but the Missal of the Roman Curia, which had seen the light in Rome centuries earlier… The changes made at the time by St. Pius V were so minimal that they can be noticed only by a specialist.
“One of Rennings’ ruses is to make no clear distinction between the Order of the Mass and the Propers of Masses for different days and different feasts. The popes, until Paul VI, made no change in the Order of the Mass properly so-called, whereas, especially after the Council of Trent, they introduced new Propers for new feasts. That no more suppressed the ‘Tridentine Mass’ than, for example, additions to the civil law would cause it to lapse.
“We should therefore speak of the ‘Roman Rite’ in contrast with the ‘Modern Rite. The Roman rite, in important parts, goes back at least to the fourth century, more exactly to the time of Pope Damasus (366-384)… Since the fifth century, the only thing on which the popes have unceasingly insisted is that the Roman Canon must be adopted; their argument being that it originated with the Apostle Peter. But concerning the other parts of the Order, and the choice of Propers for Masses, they respected the customs of local churches.’ (ibid., p. 23-4)
With respect to the changes introduced by Pope St. Pius X and Pope Pius XII:
“Restoration of early liturgical forms does not necessarily constitute a change in the rite, at least not if this is done on a case-by-case basis, and if it is done within certain constraints.
“There was thus no break with the traditional Roman rite when Pope St. Pius X restored the Gregorian chant to its original form, or when he reinstated the per annum calendar of Sunday Masses to its original precedence over feasts of (minor) saints on Sundays that were in use at that time. In the same way, when Pope Pius XII brought back the ancient Roman liturgy of the Easter Vigil, that did not constitute a change in the liturgical rite. Even the extensive restructuring of the rubrics under Pope John XIII was not a fundamental change of the rite. Neither was the Ordo Missae of 1965 [etc.]…” (ibid., p. 31)
He states that the New Mass is a new liturgical rite:
“Ritus can be defined as mandatory forms of the liturgical cult, that, in the final analysis, originated with Christ, and then, based on shared traditions, developed independently, and were later officially sanctioned by the Church hierarchy….
“If we assume that the liturgical rite evolved on the basis of shared traditions–and nobody who has at least some knowledge of liturgical history with dispute this–then it cannot be developed anew in its entirety.” (ibid., p. 27)
“Not only is the Ordo Missae of 1969 a change of the liturgical rite, but that change also involved a rearrangement of the liturgical year, including changes in the assignment of feast days for the saints. To add or drop one or the other of these feast days, as had been done before, certainly does not constitute a change of the rite, per se. But the countless innovations introduced as part of liturgical reform have left hardly any of the traditional liturgical forms intact.
“Since there is no document that specifically assigns to the Apostolic See the authority to change, let alone abolish the traditional liturgical rite; and since, furthermore, it can be shown that not a single predecessor of Pope Paul VI has ever introduced major changes to the Roman liturgy, the assertion that the Holy See has the authority to change the liturgical rite would appear to be debatable, to say the least. At the same time, we can say that there is no question that the Holy See does have the authority to approve and oversee the publication of liturgical books…” (ibid., p. 39)
The entire text of Fr. Gamber’s book is online. The first four chapters run counter to your thesis. Again, it comes down to extrinsic and intrinsic differences. Per Fr. Gamber, the popes have no authority to intrinsically change the Roman rite or abolish it, which is basically what Quo Primum can be understood as saying. Furthermore, they never had until Pope Paul VI. But popes have no authority to create new liturgies out of thin air (Frankenstein or otherwise) that did not originate with Christ and in the apostolic tradition. I think to argue otherwise entails liturgical positivism and in effect plays into the modernist agenda.
I think there is a legitimate sense in which change can occur to meet historical circumstances, but not in the modernist sense. That is how doctrinal and liturgical development have occurred, and the Council of Trent itself asserts the right of the Church to make changes according to the judgment of circumstances. This sounds a lot like the modernist argument, but they mean it in a different way. Modernists justify the Novus Ordo not simply by its meeting historical circumstances, but also by its meeting the “needs” – which are actually the desires and changed teachings – of modern man. Liturgical and doctrinal development occur not according to the desires of modern men, but according to objective circumstances which call for practical measures, or other changes that preserve the essential meaning of the doctrine or the liturgy. Pius V was doing exactly such a thing: his action was primarily practical, a prudential judgment to meet the objective needs of the times, not simply a concession to the desires of men at that time. The line between the two is thin, but it is real.
As to Michael Davies, I have a lot of respect for him and his writings, but the passage which you quote is, I think, incomplete and inaccurate in many ways. He seems to overlook the fact that Quo Primum forbade ANY changes whatsoever, so it is no use to argue that the changes of Pius X and Pius XII were insignificant or that they “were welcomed and have been highly praised by some of the traditionalists, who implacably opposed to the reform of Pope Paul VI.” The fact is that they were changes, and Quo Primum forbade any changes, with no qualifications (except “other than as established by Us”). (Davies also makes some statements that are quite simply false: that “St. Pius X made a revision not of the text but of the music.” Pius X’s reform of the Breviary, which was protected by a legislation exactly identical to Quo Primum, heavily affected the text and the arrangement of the Psalms, doing away with some traditions that went back to the time of Christ.) So if Paul VI violated Quo Primum, there is no logical possibility of denying that Pius X and Pius XII did so too. Rather than saying this, I say that none of them violated Quo Primum, because it was not binding on future Popes. Indeed, in some ways their changes were actually in conformity with the situation that Pius V put in place: that all changes in the liturgy were reserved solely to the authority of the Pope (whereas it used to be more local, though within tradition, unlike today). I don’t mean to disapprove of anything which Pius V did: Quo Primum was good and necessary, and I wish Pius V were around today to reform our current liturgical situation. But the Novus Ordo is not wrong because it violates Quo Primum; it doesn’t. It is wrong for other, more serious and more authentic reasons.
Oh, and on the Canons from Session XXII… I haven’t a firm opinion of them. I don’t know that they can all be said to be condemning heresy per se. Sometimes anathemas are attached to disciplinary and doctrinal things – one can be excommunicated for certain kinds of disobedience, even if it is not in a matter of faith. I do not think it is a matter of faith whether the Mass be said in the vernacular – many of the Easter rites do so. But I do believe that, in the Roman Rite, the Latin language is optimal; vernacular languages simply cannot do justice to the traditional theological and symbolical content of the liturgy – nor to the music (a big deal in my opinion). So I would say that the Canons from Session XXII are certainly not necessarily invalidated by today’s circumstances, although I hesitate to think that in principle they cannot be invalidated – unless they pertain to revealed doctrine rather than ecclesiastical discipline. But I will have to think about that question some more…
Maestro: So the portion of Canon IX of Session XXII having to do with the use of the vernacular appears to reflect a prudential decision regarding a discipline – what language to use in the liturgy. Now, Mr. Vennari’s video reproduced above relates why the constant practice of the Church has been to use Latin. For example, in the video he quotes Pius XII who said “The use of the Latin language prevailing in a great part of the Church affords at once a great sign of unity and an effective safeguard against corruption.”
Accordingly, in view of this quote of Pius XII and the other quote of Pius XI reproduced in the video, the discipline of using an immutable, non-vernacular language is that it fosters unity, and helps to safeguard against corruption. Now, these are extremely important considerations, for they touch one of the marks of the Church – that the Church is one.
Now, assuming it is possible for the sake of argument that the Church fathers at a later date can treat the part of Canon IX having to do with the use of the vernacular as non-binding, it would seem they could only do so if the new discipline they adopt – which would permit the use of the vernacular – did not jeopardize the value that was protected by the exclusive use of Latin under the prior discipline. In other words, the Church father (i.e., Paul VI) who decided to deviate from the constant discipline of the Roman Rite regarding the exclusive use of Latin would have to have erected safeguards that ensured the use of the vernacular did not injure Church unity or lead to corruption. Note, from this perspective this is purely a question of whether Paul VI acted in a prudent or imprudent manner in the way he permitted the use of the vernacular.
Now, since the use of vernacular required translation, it would seem that a central authority would have to have been tasked with supervising the translations, so the translations did not corrupt doctrine or injure unity by divergence in belief caused by nuances resulting from the nature of the vernacular languages themselves. In other words, it would seem that one central authority in Rome would have to have been tasked by Paul VI with making sure all the translations were both faithful to the original Latin, and also consistent among themselves. Otherwise, unity would be harmed, and corruption of doctrine would result.
Did Pope Paul VI institute such a centralized authority? What do you think!!!!! Of course not! This is the description from Wiki of the procedure that was adopted:
“Bishops’ Conferences from all over the world soon voted to expand the use of the vernacular, and requested confirmation of this choice from Rome. In response, from 1964 onwards, a series of documents from Rome granted general authorization for steadily greater proportions of the Mass to be said in the vernacular. By the time the revised Missal was published in 1970, priests were no longer obliged to use Latin in any part of the Mass. Today, a very large majority of Masses are celebrated in the language of the people, though Latin is still used either occasionally or, in some places, on a regular basis. The rule on the language to be used is as follows: “Mass is celebrated either in Latin or in another language, provided that liturgical texts are used which have been approved according to the norm of law. Except in the case of celebrations of the Mass that are scheduled by the ecclesiastical authorities to take place in the language of the people, priests are always and everywhere permitted to celebrate Mass in Latin” (Redemptionis Sacramentum, 112).
The decision to authorize use of a particular vernacular language and the text of the translation to be employed must be approved by at least a two-thirds majority of the relevant Bishops’ Conference, whose decisions must be confirmed by the Holy See.”
No, the Holy See did not adopt a top-down authority to ensure that translations were done uniformly with a goal to fostering continued unity and preventing corruption – in the interests of collegiality he decentralized the authority leaving it in the first instance for Bishop’s conferences to prepare the translation and approve it by vote of the bishops. If this isn’t frightening you yet I don’t know what would! Of course, the Holy See retained final approval but with the new, novel concept of “collegiality” just how often would a wimpy occupant of the Holy See be willing to contest a translation that had been approved by a vote of bishops?
Now, anyone with any experience in recent history and sociology knows that revolutionary movements can “capture” institutions in a manner described by Gramsci (the long march). So to decentralize authority for translations to bishop’s committees seems incredibly imprudent in view of such risks.
How did it work out in practice? One only need look at the fiasco regarding the translation of “pro multis” to know that the ecumaniacs were not prevented from falsifying the words of Our Lord at the pinnacle of the Mass in the words of consecration! If they can’t get this right, how can they be trusted with anything else?
So, apart from whether the Mass of Paul VI represents an heretical conception of the Mass, it was enacted in an imprudent manner that immediately led to corruption and disunity and arguably cast doubt on the validity of masses celebrated according to the inaccurate translations. Further, the translations were not corrected until relatively recently! Now, these are facts, not opinions. It is my understanding that such a production that gives harm to the faithful and results in disunity and corruption cannot be viewed as a product of the Holy Catholic Church. Again, as borne out by experience, it appears to be an evil regime for it has been shown in practice to be incapable of preventing gross mistranslations that immediately resulted in corruption and over time as the faithful were exposed to the corrupted translation disunity in belief. Why should the faithful have to put up with this?
This last comment is excellent! Dicipline and doctrine. The devil is using this,big time, to confuse us all and it really shouldn’t be made so complicated.
Here is another example of how we are being duped and disoriebted in regards to the purity of the priesthood by the highjakers of the Church.
The dicipline of considering ordaining married men into the priesthood vs the dicipline of considering the ording priests from celibate men only is another area of discipline that is deceptively being sold to us as not having an effect on doctrine or for that matter that continence for married clergy is not rooted in theology or that it is even a doctrine with theological foundations and that it is merely a diciplne. I would guess that most of the hierarchy believe that the perfect and perpetual continence of married clergy is not founded on doctrine ,where it most certainly is. Perfect and perpetual continence for married clergy, and this includes married deacons also, is an obligation of all clergy. This comes as a surprise to most so called traditional Catholics. Most Catholics have no idea that even though, in apostolic times, married men could be ordained to the priesthood, it was only with the wife’s free agreement to renounce her conjugal life with her husband in order that he be eligible for ordination,that this ordination could take place. This does not mean that they are divorced but that they are validly married but have both agreed to live as brother and sister for the obligation of perfect and perpetual continence required by the priesthood.
This is a very serious and supressed issued by the hierarchy who refuse to accept the immemorial practice of perfect and perpetual continence for married clergy in order to further their destruction of the priesthood and promote the new meaning of marriage and the priesthood that has been festering for more than a hundred years.
Canon law, Scripture and the magistarium all support this tradition and doctrine of perfect and perpetual continence of the clergy who configure Christ. Christ was celibate. Our Lord had one bride, the Church.
This topic and the reversing of the the primary purpose of marriage are two topics most Trads shy away from. This is a shame because it is at the heart of everything for our blessed Church and it is slipping further and further away from us as we try to put out other fires that all stem from this attack on the two most seriously harmed sacraments in this Church today. The priesthood and marriage.