Extraordinary Form in the Vernacular, The Reform of the Reform, and the Best of Both Worlds

I for one would like to see there be permission to celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (the “Tridentine Mass”) in the Vernacular, which for me is English. The whole thing in English - but people could still use Latin for parts or all of it if they want to. I know there is not much demand for this and the type of people who like the Extraordinary Form tend to be those most opposed to changing it in any way, but I can always hope.

I also would like the Ordinary Form to be made more like the Extraordinary Form while keeping the reforms that have been good. The good reforms, in my mind, include having the priest say many things like the Eucharistic Prayer in an audible voice, adding an extra reading that is usually from the Old Testament, allowing laypeople to read the first and second readings, adding/“restoring” the prayers of the faithful, and making the dialogue Mass (with the people saying the parts normally said by the minister or the choir in a Low Tridentine Mass) the norm. There are many other reforms that were good.

What I would like to see be at least possible, though, is allowing the full prayers at the foot of the altar (with the old form of the “I confess to almighty God” said in turn by both the priest and the congregation (since we are keeping the dialogue Mass)), the three-fold Kyie Eleison, the full Tridentine offertory prayers, said at least mostly aloud, and the Last Gospel (although with the dismissal moved to after the Last Gospel) - I would like to see all of these be allowed in the Ordinary Form of the Mass.

I would say that I think the spirit of what you say is nice, but I would be the first to recommend that this stuff be tried out in monasteries first, or places similar, and studied deeply and for a long time, before introducing it in the general Catholic world.

Communion kneeling at the altar rail.
Confiteor said while kneeling.
Ad orientem, more Latin (depending on circumstances), propers, more sung responses, and Roman Canon, all of which are already possible in the OF today.

That’s what I want to see. I actually like that the OF removed a lot of repetition and the post-Mass prayers. Those weren’t reforms introduced by priests getting carried away. They were specifically called for by Vatican II.

AmiCatholic, doesn’t the Anglican Use have what you desire?

That was my thought.

The original ideas behind liturgical reform were not remotely bad, but even when the whole problem of Bunigni’s misleading both the pope and the committee on which changes were to be made, the conciliar decree suggested that too many exceptions might be made; and that’s when the hobbyists had their forty-year field day with the ritual of the holy sacrifice.

The more faithful translation of the OF has made the whole of mass much more reverent, as priests spend more time genuflecting at the consecration and allow the faithful a lengthier period of meditation following communion.

Though the recommendations aren’t bad, one always has to consider the situation in which they might be applied; and it won’t be prudent to do begin experiementing in any for another generation at least.

I agree with the above posters - from what I’ve read / heard, the Anglican Use mass is in many ways an English EF…not literally true, but it borrows many elements from the EF.

Yes, but normal Roman Rite Catholics, although they are free to attend an Anglican Use service, may not join an Ordinariate Parish. And there aren’t any Pastoral Provision or Ordinariate parishes anywhere near me. I am talking about the Roman Rite as a whole.

Be realistic. How many parishes do you think would adopt a hybrid vernacular EF Mass? To me, this seems even less likely than parishes willing to adopt the full-bore Latin EF, and that’s a vanishingly small number compared to parishes which celebrate the OF. So instead of pining for a hypothetical, pie-in-the-sky hybrid, why don’t you concentrate on options that are actually viable and open to you? I personally found Byzantine liturgies quite fulfilling and I was willing, for a while, to travel a great distance to find them.

I don’t know what to tell you. I don’t know what the procedures are in requesting an Anglican Use nearby.

As far as joining a parish, do you need to join in order to attend Mass there? I’m sure you don’t have to in order to attend an EF or Byzantine or Maronite, for example.

I know many people don’t care about the rules, but if you belong to a normal Roman Rite parish that is where you should attend Mass the majority of the time unless you are incapable of doing so because of work, illness, etc. Liturgical tastes don’t cut it.

Roman Rite Catholics are not allowed to be members of Eastern Rite parishes either.

I don’t understand why both the traditionalists and the mainstream don’t seem interested in a vernacular Extraordinary Form. It doesn’t even need to be a hybrid - I would just make it a dialogue Mass so that people who are used to more congregational participation would feel more at home. If it was in their language and they had some opportunity to participate in the spoken prayers, I think a lot of mainstream Catholics - a lot more than at present - would prefer the Extraordinary Form.

Who says? We do not inquire as to the canonical ascription of parishioners when they register, and I know for a fact that we registered at least one Maronite Catholic woman in our Latin Church parish. So why can’t it go both ways? Parish membership is a completely different animal from canonical ascription. In fact I would think it a necessary prerequisite before changing one’s canonical ascription that one become a member in the target parish and remain active for a good while prior to the petition. Have you actually tried to register in an Eastern Catholic parish and been turned down?

There is no such rule.

But then it wouldn’t be the extraordinary form so what’s the point? Sure, anytime you create a variation, there will be some people who will like it. Vernacular Mass. Guitar Mass. Clown Mass.

I have my own very subjective “ideal” Mass in mind and it isn’t a vernacular EF. It’s actually closer to the opposite; a Latin OF so a vernacular EF would be moving in the wrong direction.

My most convenient Mass (which I can walk to) is a Spanish one. I’d die for a Latin OF or EF nearby.

I think this is a great idea. A more reverential form of Mass with English and Latin and some good, traditional hymns instead of the awful music we are plagued with now would be fantastic. Have you seen the Papal Mass at Westminster Cathedral with Pope Benedict video? It is a beautiful combination of Latin and English with the most astounding music I have ever heard at a Mass, ever. vimeo.com/15731465

I’m old enough to remember when they made the change from Latin to English. Honestly, when I first heard about it, I thought they were going to use the English translation from my 1962 Latin-English missal. The language was reverent, worshipful, and brought out the meaning of “latria” in regards to worship.

I thought it would be great to be able to hear that language spoken rather than following along in my missal, including of course, the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar.

What we actually got was something I never expected: “ICEL English!”

That was rather a disappointment; and then the liturgy took a turn for the worse. It has gotten much better since, but we had to go through a period of dubious experimentation.

You must have had the St. Joseph Missal as that is the one that was used throughout the interim period between 1965-1969. The different missals did have different translations and they might have had some copyright issues, leading the ICEL to be formed in the first place. They were among the first to push for Vatican II legislation to allow vernacular, according to books that I’ve read. Costwise it would have been much less expensive had Latin been retained in the Mass, allowing for vernacular in those areas where Christianity was virtually unknown. That way the Vatican wouldn’t have had to approve 500 different vernaculars. Be that as it is, I do enjoy hearing Mass in languages other than English. You can learn a lot that way. :slight_smile:

It’s possible I was recalling an even earlier version than the 1962 missal. I remember telling a friend once that you could go to Mass anywhere in the world, and understand the main parts of what was being said, because we all know the common Latin parts. Now that travel is more common that’s no longer true!

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