Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Cardinal Sarah's proposed reform of the Traditional Mass

In addressing the Summorum Pontificum Pilgrimage to Rome last weekend, with many very fine and important things to say, on the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of Summorum Pontificum, Cardinal Sarah acknowledged the response to his earlier remarks on the subject of ‘reconciling’ the Ordinary and the Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite. 

In July I spoke of a possible future reconciliation between the two forms of the Roman rite. Some have interpreted this expression of personal opinion as the announcement of a programme that would end up in the future imposition of a hybrid rite which would bring about a compromise that would leave everybody unhappy and would abolish the usus antiquior by stealth, as it were. This interpretation is absolutely not what I intended. What I do wish to do is to encourage further thought and study on these questions in peace and tranquillity and in a spirit of prayerful discernment. There are improvements which can be made to both forms of the Roman rite in use today, and both forms can contribute to this in due course.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Traditional Mass and Ecclesiology

I'm reposting this again because the general issue of obedience to casual words of the reigning Pope is current again, and also because this incident is recounted in Leo Darroch's book on the history of the FIUV which was launched in Rome on Sunday, and is available to buy here.

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Basil Loftus has circled back to his story about Cardinal Benelli in his latest column in the Catholic Times, so I thought I'd repost this response to it from April 2016

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Giovanni, Cardinal Benelli

Thanks to the archives of the FIUV, I can shed some light on something mentioned by Mgr Basil Loftus in a column I discussed the other day. He'd picked up the claim that Cardinal Benelli had once said to the President of the Una Voce Federation (FIUV), Dr Eric de Savanthem, that there was a connection between the Traditional Mass and ecclesiology. (Contrary to Loftus, Benelli was actually made a cardinal the year after this meeting, in 1977.)

I noted that Lofus didn't cite a source for this: when one realises what his source is, it is easy to see why he'd rather his readers didn't know. Here is a longer extract: I've emboldened the words quoted verbatim by Loftus to the hapless readers of the Catholic Times on 27th March.


When the President of Una Voce at an interview with Archbishop (now Cardinal) Benelli in Rome in October 1976, pointed out the existing liturgical chaos and asked how, in view of this state of things, the suppression of the old Mass could be justified, he was told that “those who wish to retain the old Mass have a different ecclesiology.” This from one of the closest advisors of the then Pope; it meant that those who were faithful to Catholic tradition were now to be treated as dissidents. The phrase quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus (“What has been believed always, everywhere, and by all”) as a criterion of orthodoxy bad now been rejected in favor of a new Party Line which contradicted the Church’s entire previous tradition. What was forbidden and condemned yesterday becomes lawful today, and mandatory tomorrow. What had always been seen as black, is now white, and vice versa─because the Party says so. This comes close to the Bolshevik criterion of morality: what is right or wrong is simply what helps or hinders the Party.(Source: SSPX USA District)


Monday, September 18, 2017

New Council elected by Una Voce International

I attended the 'closed' or business meeting of Una Voce International - the Foederatio Internationalis Una Voce, FIUV - which takes place every two years and elects (or re-elects) the organisation's officers and Council.

Like most voluntary organisations, the FIUV is never overwhelmed by people wanting to take on positions of responsibility. We are very grateful to Felipe Alanis Suarez (from Mexico) for agreeing to do another term as President, and to Monika Rheinsmitt for carrying on as Treasurer. I agreed to be Secretary, a post I have not undertaken before. (I was Treasurer 2013-'15.)

Apart from the usual and, often in their most interesting aspects, confidential contact with the Curia, and the development of the organisation (such as the admission of new members), the big news of this year's General Assembly is the publication of the history of the FIUV by Leo Darroch, from the beginning (1965) up to the resignation of Michael Davies as President in 2002. It is a substantial work and I'll be writing reviews of it in various formats soon: buy it from the LMS bookshop here.

Here is the full list of Officers an pd Council members of the FIUV

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Photos from Walsingham, Part 3

After Mass in the Reconciliation Chapel, we walked in procession down the Holy Mile, the last mile to the site of the Medieval shrine, destroyed at the Reformation.

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Monday, September 11, 2017

Photos from Walsingham, Part 2

On Saturday, we stop at the ruins of Castle Acre Priory, and say the De Profundis.

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On Saturday evening, at our evening stop of Great Massingham, we were visited by Bishop Alan Hopes, who is of course the lcoal Ordinary: Bishop of East Anglia.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

Photos from Walsingham: Part 1

Most of these photos are by John Aron, our brilliant photographer; a couple are by me.

The pilgrimage was brilliant, and the numbers were our highest ever. I'm going to let the photos do the talking.

Gathering on Thursday evening: dinner.

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Mass early on Friday morning, celebrated by Fr Michael Rowe

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A new liturgy war? Magnum principium

Pope Francis has promulgated a Motu Proprio,  Magnum principium, giving Bishops’ Conferences somewhat more authority over the translations used in their areas. Conferences always had a lot to do with translations, and Rome still has the final say, so I have to defer to others who understand these things exactly what, if any, difference this is going to make. 

I don't expect the English speaking bishops to start making big changes, as everyone sensible is thoroughly exhausted by the revision of 2011. The amount of time, money, and energy required for this things is gigantic. However, I suppose we can expect liturgical progressive to initiate a renewed debate about ‘inclusive language’, ‘pro multis’, and the word ‘ineffable’, because they will always do that given half a chance.