The Value of the Mass

The Value of the Mass
Up to our own times, it has been the constant concern of supreme pontiffs to ensure that the Church of Christ offers a worthy ritual to the Divine Majesty, 'to the praise and glory of His name,' and 'to the benefit of all His Holy Church - Pope Benedict XVI, Summorum Pontificum

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Off on Retreat

My friends,

Tomorrow I'm beginning the annual seminarian retreat for the diocese of Columbus. I have to do much praying and I have to make a very important decision so I kindly ask for your prayers.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Franciscans of the Primitive Observance

A Call to all my readers!!

I'm trying to find out any information I can about the Franciscans of the Primitive Observance. If anybody knows anything please comment on this post. I'm looking for things like contact information, locations, constitutions, or vocations info. All help will be appreciated.

Monday, July 23, 2007

We have lost faith in our faith.

Lately I've been reading a lot about people complaining about the Good Friday liturgy of the Extraordinary form of the Mass. You've heard the complaints too. "It's anti-Semitic", "How dare we pray for the conversion of the Jews?!" My question is, when did we loose faith in our faith? At what point in time did we actually begin to think that converting to the Church was a useless endeavor and that we shouldn't pray for peoples conversion? I would like to think that my conversion wasn't a waste.

This reminds me of a situation in my own life. I came from a Protestant background and from time to time I visit the side of my family that is protestant. They happen to also be anti catholic. One thing I can count on, though, when I go to visit is they always try to convert me back to their church. Am I offended? No. I know that they believe, and believe firmly, that their church is the true church of God and that my soul is in danger. Does this mean that they're anti-Zach? No, of course not. It means that they're pro-Zach. They actually believe what they say and don't give their faith only lip service. They actually care about me enough to want me to attain salvation and thus pray and strive for my conversion. I happen to think that they're wrong, but it doesn't upset me that they actually care about my soul. We just happen to disagree. This action in particular wouldn't be anti-catholic either. It is other actions they do that justify that title, and I don't wish to go into them now. That's not what this post is about.

So when did the Catholic Church loose faith in herself to lose that commitment? I personally think its false ecumenism that's to blame. When the Church teaching is skewed for 40+ years to the point of relativism then of course Catholics are going to think that other people don't need to convert. So if the Church prays for the conversion of Jews is it anti-Semitic? Of course not. The Church is no more anti-Semitic than my grandmother is anti-Zach. If anything, it's pro-Semitic. The Church needs to realise once again that "no one can come to the Father except by [Jesus]." That's it. End of story. Christ is not just simply a useless guru. The Church is not just an organization that exists to make people feel better about themselves. Christ is the only was to salvation and the Church is the only instrument through which that is accomplished.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Is Ecclesia Dei already getting involved?

Well, if you look over at Fr. Z's blog, What Does The Prayer Really Say (see link to the right), a new notice has been given by the diocese of Orange. Here's the text of the letter:

THIS MESSAGE BEING SENT TO ALL PRIESTS.On 10 July 2007 Bishop Brown sent out a memo Re: Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum based on the unofficial English translation sent to all bishops by Pope Benedict XVI in advance of the Motu Proprio’s release at noon on July 7, 2007. The translation has since been revised. This, in particular, affects the directions in the memo to give serious consideration to the use of the reformed Lectionary for Mass and its expanded cursus of Scripture texts. The revised translation of Article 6 of the Motu Proprio states that “the readings may be given in the vernacular, using editions recognized by the Apostolic See.” After September 14, the Exhalation [sic – breathe deeply] of the Holy Cross, when the Motu Prioprio becomes effective and when the forma extraordinaria is celebrated, the calendar of the Missal of Blessed John XXIII along with the readings contained in the Missal should be used until such time that the Ecclesia Dei Commission gives further direction. The home page of the USCCB website has the most recent translation of the Motu Proprio along with Pope Benedict’s letter to the bishops. If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at ….Lesa Truxaw Director, Office for Worship

If you look at the bold part it would almost seem that Ecclesia Dei has been called to clarify as to whether or not Article 6 gives permission for use of the new lectionary. Orange's original statement mandated that extraordinary form Masses in the diocese had to use the new lectionary. Now they're resending that statement. Why? It would seem to me that Ecclesia Dei is beginning to flex its muscles. Let's hope anyway.

Side Note: If Fr. Z reads this blog and has any objections to copying the letter released by Orange off of his blog, please let me know and I will get rid of it.

New Clip on Youtube

Well, I think I've just made another small step into the world of technology. I've recently put a video on youtube. The video is in commemoration of St. Vincent de Paul Orphanage that used to stand on Main St. in Columbus Ohio. Sadly, the chapel old chapel (which hadn't been used in ages) was torn down in May of this year. Check out the video though. Tell me what you think!

You can see the video here.
[Edit: The picture above is of the sanctuary of St. Vincent orphanage in the early 1900's (the chapel was built in 1884). Click on the picture for a more detailed view.]

Friday, July 13, 2007

Troubles Ahead

Well, we've had Summorum Pontificum for a week now and things seem to already be headed down hill. I have to say that it's unfortunate to see bishops who seem to want to limit the Holy Father's generosity. This is not to say that all bishops want to limit Summorum Pontificum, but as we have seen on the web lately there are some. I was hoping that this would be a great moment for the Church, but as some feared this seems to be causing division. Not division as some thought. It's not causing division between priests and laity. It's not causing divisions between Catholics who prefer the Ordinary Form against catholics who prefer the Extraordinary Form. It's not causing divisions between Catholics and Jews (or any other non-catholic for that matter.) No, it's not causing any of that as it was feared. But it is a document of division. It is a document that divides the orthodox from the heterodox. It is a document that divides the faithful from the unfaithful. Lastly, and this is the saddest of all, it is a document that seems to be dividing some bishops from their priests, their faithful, and the Holy Father. In a time where we should be forgetting our agendas, and turning towards Rome in faithful obedience, we have begun to turn inward. That is frightening indeed.

As always, there is only one remedy for this. Let us pray. Let us pray for an end to the 40 year confusion that has clouded the Church of God. Prayer has gotten us this far and it is prayer and only prayer that will be our guide to the second coming.

Oremus Pro Invicem

Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Orthodox and Summorum Pontificum

I just happened to catch this video here on Youtube and found myself amazed at the words of His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew I. When giving his homily during the visitation of the Holy Father during his visit to Turkey, Bartholomew I focused almost solely on the Divine Liturgy. I can't help but wonder if this decision by the Holy Father to free the ancient liturgy of the western rite was part of a giant step towards reunification with the Orthodox. I truly hope so.

That is really one of my great loves ( that a word?) of the ancient Roman liturgy is that it connects us with the Orthodox East. It was at a Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom at the local Byzantine Ruthinian Catholic Church that I fell in love with ancient liturgy. The ancients truly knew how to express themselves in an angelic way and when moved by the Holy Spirit, the Church held on to such great expressions. These are expressions that you just can't produce with a committee.

Well, enough of my ranting! Check out the video at the link. They are truly words of wisdom.

[Also, for anybody who gets their hair in a bunch because I referred to Patriarch Bartholomew I as "His Holiness" I have only this to say. He is a Patriarch and it is his due title. He respects the Church of Rome enough to call Benedict XVI "Your Holiness" so I feel we should do the same. Not only that, but the Church recognises his Holy Orders as valid, so I don't see much reason to with hold titles. If I met an eastern bishop (orthodox or otherwise) I would probably referrer to him as "Your Excellency." ]

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Nothing to Fear

It seems a great fear has come over some of the faithful regarding Summorum Pontificum. This is evidenced by several calls on EWTN last night expressing concern over the return of the old Mass. These calls show a great misunderstanding regarding the Motu Proprio.

Summorum Pontificum in no way proposes replacing the Mass of Paul VI with the Mass of John XXIII. It is only allowing an option. For those who have grown to love the Mass of Paul VI, you have no need to fear loosing it. Summorum Pontificum doesn't abrogate this Mass and implies no intention to do so in the future.

So, for those of you who read this blog who may be of a more contemporary mind, don't listen to the liberals who whine like it the end of the world. It seems to me that they are only trying to draw attention to themselves and push an agenda that wants you to think that it's the end of the Mass of Paul VI. I assure you, they are wrong.

I think there is a lesson to be learned in all the confusion surrounding Summorum Pontificum. It's a lession we should have learned after the Second Vatican Council. That lesson is to ACTUALLY READ THE DOCUMENTS. The great confusion after Vatican II was due to many people pronouncing judgements before ever reading the documents. We are in the same danger here. This is a message to anybody who reads my blog, don't take my word for it. READ THE DOCUMENTS! (In this case specifically, read Summorum Pontificum.)

On the Triduum

For those of you who may have been watching EWTN last night you may have noticed a mistake that seems to becoming more common.

Before I say any more, I have to clarify something. I want to say that I am highly devoted to EWTN and that I think the mistake made last night was an honest one.

The mistake made was regarding the use of the Extraordinary form of the Roman Rite on the Easter Triduum. Raymond Arroyo mentioned that Summorum Pontificum said that the Extraordinary form could not be used on the Easter Triduum. This is not correct. This is a result of misreading Article 2 of Summorum Pontificum.

Here is the article in question (emphasis mine):

Art. 2. In Masses celebrated without the people [in other words, private masses], any priest of Latin rite, whether secular or religious, can use the Roman Missal published by Pope Blessed John XXIII in 1962 or the Roman Missal promulgated by the Supreme Pontiff Paul VI in 1970, on any day except in the Sacred Triduum. For celebration in accordance with one or the other Missal, a priest does not require any permission, neither from the Apostolic See nor his own Ordinary.

If you'll notice, the article only refers to private masses or "Masses celebrated without the people." It says that these Masses, the private ones, can't be celebrated during the Triduum under either form. It's written a bit awkward, but that is what it's stating. If it were stating that public Mass (as is the assumption) can't be celebrated during the Triduum it would also include the Missal of Paul VI, hence the conjunction "or." If that's so, then what missal can we use? Under that context, article 2 does not make sense.

Article 2 is just another article restating an established norm. Private Masses, including those done according to the Missal of Paul VI, have always been prohibited during the Easter Triduum. Before 1970 this was the case as well, as private Masses have ALWAYS been prohibited during the Triduum.

So, in short, either Missal may be used for public Masses during the Easter Triduum.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Thank You Holy Father

I haven't posted a picture in a while so I will post this one in thanksgiving!

Caption: "My job here is done, have fun with my new document, I'm off on vacation!"

What a cry baby

"I can't fight back the tears. This is the saddest moment in my life as a man, priest and bishop," Luca Brandolini, a member of the liturgy commission of the Italian bishops' conference, told the Rome daily La Repubblica in an interview on Sunday.
"It's a day of mourning, not just for me but for the many people who worked for the Second Vatican Council. A reform for which many people worked, with great sacrifice and only inspired by the desire to renew the Church, has now been cancelled."

The above is part of an article from ABC. As I said in the title, what a cry baby. Not only that, be he seems to almost be insulting the Holy Father implying that the Holy Father's actions were counter to the Council, and unwise. Honestly, who does this guy think he is?

Dissapointed wit NLM

This post has been deleted.

Some Confusion

There seems to be some confusion regarding article 6 of the Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum and I would like to clear it up here.

Before I explain, I would like to inform anybody who reads this that this is not just my opinion but also the opinion of a canon lawyer.

Here is the article in question:

Art. 6
In Masses celebrated with the people according to the Missal of Blessed John XXIII, the
Readings can be proclaimed even in the vernacular, using editions that have received the recognitio of
the Apostolic See.

Now, some are stating that this article gives permission to alter the missal of John XXIII to replace the latin readings with that of the vernacular. This is not so. Why? Because the article says "in Masses celebrated... according to the Missal of Blessed John XXIII." In the Missal of Bl. John XXIII the only vernacular allowed were the readings being repeated in the vernacular, not innitially proclaimed in such. If the readings were to be replaced with the vernacular, it would not be according to the missal of Bl. John XXIII.

Here's a simple syllogism to illustrate it.

The Missal of John XXIII allowed for vernacular readings only as repeats of the already proclaimed latin.

Pope Benedict stated that vernacular readings can be used according to the Missal of John XXIII

Therefore, the vernacular readings that Pope Benedict is making a statement about are those that are repeats of the already proclaimed latin.

Simple, p->q, q->r = p->r . It's simple logic.

That being said, the point is almost entirely moot in the fact that article 6 says that they CAN be used, not that they must. This further proves my point, however, because this was exactly the option in the Missal of Bl. John XXIII, the vernacular COULD be used in repeating the readings, but it was not necessary.

To further prove my point, it should be noted that the rest of Summorum Pontificum points out to the fact that the Missal of Bl. John XXIII is not to have elements of the Missal of Paul VI mixed in. (See Art. 2) This is given exception, however, with intoductions of new saints into the older calender, but it should be noted that the pope DOES NOT DO THAT WITH THIS DOCUMENT!!! He says that this task will only be undertaken after consulting not only
Ecclesia Dei, but also "various bodies devoted to the usus antiquior," in other words, the heads of orders that exclusively use the traditional rite (FSSP, ICRSS, etc.)

I hope that clears up any confusion that some may put out there is a simply and logical way.

[Edit: I should also mention that this is only an opinion of mine and many others and that I feel that this matter needs to be clarified by the Eccelisia Dei commission.]


Saturday, July 7, 2007

This is just too good.


Ok, my links were messing up my blog so if you would like to see the video previously posted just click the link here.


Well, my friends, it has been released. Although I haven't read a translation of the document itself, the Vatican website does have a translation of the letter that accompanies it. There is one sentence I would like to highlight.

"I would like to draw attention to the fact that this Missal was never juridically abrogated and, consequently, in principle, was always permitted."

From the mouth (or should I say pen) of the Holy Father himself. The old Mass was never abrogated and, well, I guess I can't put it better myself. My initial reaction to this document is very good, however, I'm waiting on an official translation to read because, as I have said, I only have a translation of the accompanying letter.

Friday, July 6, 2007

The Countdown Has Begun!!!

Tomorrow will, hopefully, be like Christmas morning when I will feast with my eyes on the great gift given by the Holy Father and by God himself. Namely that of the Motu Proprio of the Supreme Pontiff Benidict XVI, Summorum Pontificum! I am quite excited to see what it says and I hope and pray that it will be what we all have been hoping for. For those of you on the east coast (EST) if you wish to know the MP should be released in 4 hours, however this does not mean that it will be translated in that time. However, I have had a long day and can wait until morning. Perhaps I will look it over after a 9:00 AM First Saturday Mass (Traditional Roman Rite of course!)

Deo Gratias

Thursday, July 5, 2007

The silence before the storm

Well, there seems to be a call to silence in the net for any information regarding the MP. This is a good thing. Why? Because there is too much rumor and speculation right now regarding the text of the document. Rumors include a designation of an "ordinary" and "extraordinary" rite (which would be very bad thing) as well an ad experementum period. These rumors, often sparked by unreliable Internet news sources, will only throw gasoline on the fire. If the MP is to be effective than a panic can not be caused among liberals. If you're attempting to get rid of a bees nest you don't throw a brick into it first.

Instead of speculation regarding the document we should do a couple of things.

1. Pray. Prayer is the most powerful tool we have. It has brought us this far and will strengthening us in the future. Prayer is that which connects us to God and with God all things are possible. So let us pray for the best possible outcome for this document.

2. Prepare. Let us prepare to give thanks. Let us prepare to encourage our priests to embrace this movement within the Church as well as embracing the Holy Father in this decision.

These two things will help us not to gossip and not to chase rumors. For anybody who reads my blog you should now that I don't advocate chasing rumors. Many rumors fall short (Remember May 5, Pentecost, Easter, Christmas, etc.?) Now this has moved beyond the rumor stage so let us give thanks for the hope we now have.

Deo gratias.