Pope Benedict and the Mass

Really good editorial on Pope Benedict and the Mass from Dr. Robert Moynihan of Inside the Vatican magazine:

Benedict and the Mass

               *The text below is the editorial of the forthcoming June-July issue   of* Inside the Vatican *magazine.*

               - by Dr. Robert Moynihan

               A reflection on the meaning of the Mass, and a comment on the debate over the restoration of the old liturgy

               *"Throw melted wax into melted wax, and the one interpenetrates the other perfectly. In the same way, when the Body and Blood of Christ are received, the union is such that Christ is in the recipient and he in Christ." -St. Cyril of Jerusalem*

               *"When Mass was over I remained with Jesus in thanksgiving. Oh how sweet was the colloquy with paradise that morning! It was such that, although I want to tell you all about it, I cannot... The heart of Jesus and my own -- allow me to use the expression -- were fused. No longer were two hearts beating, but only one... My joy was so intense and deep that I could bear it no more and tears of happiness poured down my cheeks." - St. Padre Pio (canonized June 16, 2002)*

               In Rome in mid-June, the release of Pope Benedict’s **motu proprio** allowing wider celebration of the "old Mass" was reportedly "imminent," expected in any case "during the first days of July, before the Pope goes on his summer vacation," Vatican officials close to the Pope said. (And yet, the document has been delayed before.)

[Edited by Moderator]

insidethevatican.com/newsflash/2007/newsflash-jun26-07.htm

Benedict and the Mass

(Cont. …)

So it is a very important matter. But what is the problem? It seems that Benedict, like many thoughtful believers, is concerned about the fact that the conciliar reform of the liturgy in the 1960s has in some way apparently failed to achieve its chief goal, which was to bring about an even greater reverence for the Eucharist, an even greater participation by the faithful in the mystery of Christ, an even deeper sacramental life within the Church. (That is what the conciliar fathers hoped to accomplish by approving a liturgical reform.)

               And if there are in the "old Mass," as many argue, qualities too hastily discarded in the 1960s -- a sense of tradition which made it a bit easier for some to turn their minds toward the eternal, a sense of solemnity which helped some to turn their hearts toward God -- and if that loss can, even if only in part, be made good, if it can be remedied, by a *motu proprio* allowing the "old Mass" to be celebrated more widely, then it is a work of great import for the Pope to carry out.

If the “old Mass” is merely a “cultural” matter, the fad of a small elite, it will not flourish in any case, and the motu proprio will be a dead letter. But if it is a matter of renewing the Church, and if the dignity and holiness of the old rite strikes the faithful in such a way as to re-kindle in them a sense of that devotion which prepares them to encounter Christ, then allowing the old Mass to be celebrated more widely will be an act worth preparing for with much toil and care.

insidethevatican.com/newsflash/2007/newsflash-jun26-07.htm

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