Do some documents allow to much latitiude?

I wonder if some of the abuses we see today in the Liturgy would not happen if some of the instructions and documents would been more precise.

This thought came to mind the other day when I was re-reading REDMPTIONIS SACRAMENTUM my example comes from this intruction.

#102 The chalice should not be ministered to lay members of Christ’s faithful where there is such a large number of communicants that it is difficult to gauge the amount of wine for the Eucharist and there is danger that “more than a reasonable quantitiy of the Blood of Christ remain to be consumed at the end of the celebration.”

It seems like if the instruction listed concrete numbers like say 150-200 . I personally feel that using words like reasonable is open game for personal interpretation.

Read this and think about how it relates to your question:

jimmyakin.typepad.com/defensor_fidei/2006/11/john_allen_has_.html

Great. It makes me think how we function as Americans. It was like WWII the french likely wanted to think about it and while they were pondering looking out the window seeing the NAZIs were marching down the avenue des Champs-Élysées.

Along the same line as Jimmy Akin is suggesting…

I had someone explain Vatican documents this way. If a document says, “You should…” or “You ought to…” such statements are understood to be strong guidelines but not unbreakable laws. If a document states something in the negative like, “You must never …” then that statement is to be taken as an absolute. This person, a diocesan liturgical expert, gave an entire hierarchy of language wording that explained just how seriously a given directive should be taken.

Well, then we’d have to ask, what about parishes that have fewer than 200 attendees in total? Are they forbidden from ever using the chalice, even at Easter and on Corpus Christi?

Actually, I think it makes sense to leave the details up to the judgement of the pastor. Believe it or not, our priests aren’t just some homeless guys doing a work experience program - they really do know what they’re doing - most of the time. :wink:

We have to read the language of the document. Use of the word “shall” constitutes an imperative. No wiggle room, this is how it shall be done. May, on the other hand is suggestive, or perhaps even permissive. Effective with the beginning of Advent new norms concerning the Celebration of the Eucharist will take effect, particularly as they concern purifying the vessels used in distributing Holy Communion. These norms are not "mays:, they are "shalls:.

NEW NORMS?! The purification of the vessels by the laity was never considered a norm. The indult allowing the action expired years ago and as far as “new Norms” the vessel cleaning has been released by he USCCB liturgy committe to be immediate and self executing. There is nothing “new” about or old about it. Check the USCCB website and click on the liturgy link…it is all there to be done NOW! Not for the begining of Advent…(actually thats next week isn’t it?) However it has been a few weeks that we have supposedly not been purifying vessels.

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