Pre-Tridentine Mass Comeback?

What happened to the pre Tridentine mass? Could it ever come back? God Bless!
Edit to fix spelling

Which one?

The whole idea of the Tridentine reforms of Pope St. Pius V is that forms of the Mass less than two hundred years old were abrogated. Then the form of the Mass that was actively in use in Rome at the time was adopted as “the” Mass.

Compare that to the Second Vatican Council reforms; the 1962 Missal was never abrogated, Pope Saint Paul VI promulgated the Ordinary Form, and Pope Benedict XVI restored access to the Extraordinary Form.

I think you would be hard pressed to prove a need and a method for resurrecting pre-Tridentine forms of Mass. They were unambiguously abrogated. There is not a demand for yet another form of the Mass. Perhaps by “mutual enrichment”, parts could be excavated and organically mixed, but that is neither here nor there.

I’m not sure, but I think the points raised in quotes cited here show that the OF borrows from ancient liturgies:


There’s actually a variety of types of “Pre-Tridentine Masses”.
One of them might be celebrated with special permission once in a while for historical purposes. However, it’s unlikely that they would ever be in general use.

Plus there are plenty of liturgies among the Eastern Catholics from which to choose if one wishes ‘older liturgies’.

1 Like

As @Tis_Bearself and others have pointed out, there was no such thing as “the pre-Tridentine Mass.” There were hundreds of them.

1 Like

The earlier western rites that remain are:

  • Ambrosian Rite
  • Rite of Braga
  • Mozarabic RIte
  • Benedictine Rite
  • Carmelite Rite
  • Carthusian Rite
  • Cistercian Rite
  • Dominican Rite
  • Norbertine Rite

The Dominican rite is still celebrated today. It was not abrogated by Trent and can be celebrated per Summorum Pontificum. I as a Dominican would like our priests to learn it as it’s part of the heritage of our Order and beautiful.


True; in my mind I was including rites such as the Dominican as “Tridentine” because they were ratified by Pope St. Pius V.

Yes, I should have noted that some of these rites remain and are generally used in limited contexts, such as within an order or region. However, even the orders don’t use them all the time. Before COVID I used to attend Mass at a nearby Norbertine abbey quite often and they weren’t using the Norbertine rite, for example. Likewise when I went to Mass at the Carmelite monastery, it was Tridentine, not Carmelite.

Part of what went on in developing the current Mass was bringing back older practice that predated Trent . . .

and as @stpurl noted, there are EC liturgies older than trent. Come to think of it, I can’t think of any that come from after the fourth century, save for the Presanctified Liturgy"–formulated by Pope St. Gregory the Great.

In byzantine usage, the most often used is that of St. John Chrysotum, which further abbreviated St. Basil’s, which itself reduced the existing liturgy in Byzantium so something like three and a half hours . . . both were in the fourth century.

Some byzantiens also use the Divine Liturgy of St. James, which, iirc, is second century, as is the oriental Liturgy of Addai & Mari, I believe.

I couldn’t guess at the age of the Qurbana . . .

The Ordinary Form or Novus Ordo is probably pretty similar to masses by early Christians. It would have been in the vernacular and not as complicated as the TLM. I like the idea if the TLM as it is part of our culture as Catholics even if it is pretty rare and hard to get in Ireland.

Doubtful for general use because there were hundreds! There are some in use today for specific communities, ie. Dominican or Benedictine rite. There are are also Eastern Rites that pre-date the Tridentine in regular use. Mass of St. John Chrysostom?

Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysotum.

Yes, far older than trent; see post 11 above

Here is a good site you may be interested in…

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit