The Latin liturgy


#1

Dear all,

I'm not sure if this is the right place to put this thread. If not, I hope it can be moved to the appropriate place. Why did the Latin liturgy become predominant in the West? I've heard that there were other liturgies used by the Irish, British, Normans, etc. before Latin became the standard. Why did we choose not to preserve the much older Western liturgies, as we have done with the Mozarabic Rite for instance?


#2

[quote="AveChriste11, post:1, topic:314923"]
Dear all,

I'm not sure if this is the right place to put this thread. If not, I hope it can be moved to the appropriate place. Why did the Latin liturgy become predominant in the West? I've heard that there were other liturgies used by the Irish, British, Normans, etc. before Latin became the standard. Why did we choose not to preserve the much older Western liturgies, as we have done with the Mozarabic Rite for instance?

[/quote]

What do you mean by Latin liturgy? Do you mean the Roman Rite? Because the old Western liturgies like the Sarum Rite were celebrated in Latin.


#3

[quote="AveChriste11, post:1, topic:314923"]
Dear all,

I'm not sure if this is the right place to put this thread. If not, I hope it can be moved to the appropriate place. Why did the Latin liturgy become predominant in the West? I've heard that there were other liturgies used by the Irish, British, Normans, etc. before Latin became the standard. Why did we choose not to preserve the much older Western liturgies, as we have done with the Mozarabic Rite for instance?

[/quote]

The West is the Latin Church. The Roman Rite (one of the many Latin Liturgies) became predominant. Why did it become predominant? I believe it was do to the standardization of the Mass at the Council of Trent. The Mass was standardized in part (I assume) to make sure that every priest properly celebrated the Mass properly and without any protestant ideas inserted. Why Latin language? Because Latin was the universal (for the most part) language of the West just as Greek was the universal (for the most part) language of the East.

There was a point in the Early Church when the people of Rome did not like that the vernacular Latin was replacing the original Greek. Those were the original traditionalist Catholics. ;)


#4

[quote="YoungTradCath, post:2, topic:314923"]
What do you mean by Latin liturgy? Do you mean the Roman Rite? Because the old Western liturgies like the Sarum Rite were celebrated in Latin.

[/quote]

Yes I mean the Tridentine Rite, the extraordinary form of the Mass which has been celebrated for over a thousand years.


#5

[quote="Zekariya, post:3, topic:314923"]
The West is the Latin Church. The Roman Rite (one of the many Latin Liturgies) became predominant. Why did it become predominant? I believe it was do to the standardization of the Mass at the Council of Trent. The Mass was standardized in part (I assume) to make sure that every priest properly celebrated the Mass properly and without any protestant ideas inserted. Why Latin language? Because Latin was the universal (for the most part) language of the West just as Greek was the universal (for the most part) language of the East.

There was a point in the Early Church when the people of Rome did not like that the vernacular Latin was replacing the original Greek. Those were the original traditionalist Catholics. ;)

[/quote]

So why was the Mass standardized? As to the language, I've always thought they could have been innovative as Sts. Cyril and Methodius were, and chose to create an alphabet for our Western ancestors to celebrate the Liturgy in..


#6

[quote="AveChriste11, post:5, topic:314923"]
So why was the Mass standardized? As to the language, I've always thought they could have been innovative as Sts. Cyril and Methodius were, and chose to create an alphabet for our Western ancestors to celebrate the Liturgy in..

[/quote]

The Mass was standardized in part (I assume) to make sure that every priest properly celebrated the Mass properly and without any protestant ideas inserted.

The Mass was actually prayed in the vernacular in some countries before Vatican II. China had permission from Pope Alexander VII in the 1600s to have Mass in Chinese.


#7

I think there were other cases of the Mass being celebrated in other ways too, weren't there? Correct me if I have my history wrong, but I remember reading that Patriarch Michael Cerularius got upset when the Normans were imposed with Latinizations, and in a tongue-in-cheek move.. enforced the Byzantine Rite within all Latin churches which were in Constantinople. So why was it recommended that the Normans also worship in the standard Latin? This was before the advent of the Protestant Reformation..


#8

[quote="AveChriste11, post:7, topic:314923"]
I think there were other cases of the Mass being celebrated in other ways too, weren't there? Correct me if I have my history wrong, but I remember reading that Patriarch Michael Cerularius got upset when the Normans were imposed with Latinizations, and in a tongue-in-cheek move.. enforced the Byzantine Rite within all Latin churches which were in Constantinople. So why was it recommended that the Normans also worship in the standard Latin? This was before the advent of the Protestant Reformation..

[/quote]

The Normans belonged to the Patriarch of the West, the Pope of Rome. The Patriarch Constantinople had no jurisdiction there. There could have been some politicks involved; I do not know for certain. :)


#9

[quote="AveChriste11, post:4, topic:314923"]
Yes I mean the Tridentine Rite, the extraordinary form of the Mass which has been celebrated for over a thousand years.

[/quote]

The Tridentine Mass is not a thousand years old. It is a product of the Council of Trent., post Reformation. Latin was used before that yes, but this particular Mass is about 500 years old.

Here is an interesting article from Wiki that may answer some of your questions.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tridentine_Mass


#10

First of all, because the Franks decided to adopt the Roman Rite and make it the official, standard form of the liturgy as part of their overall objective to unify and consolidate their realms. Political unity was not the only factor; the Franks had “the grass is much greener” attitude and thought that the Roman liturgy was beautiful in comparison to the diverse liturgies then used throughout Gaul (France), which were suffering from corrupt texts (this was the time when knowledge of ‘real’ Latin was declining in mainland Europe).

What happened was that when the Roman liturgy was imported into Gaul, Gallican elements crept into Roman practice, creating a hybrid Roman-Frankish liturgy and chant. (Most of the ‘smells and bells’ of the originally austere Roman liturgy were derived from the Gallican liturgies.) By 785-786 Charlemagne was enacting laws to bring the process of Romanization to completion and to suppress the Gallican rites entirely. He had asked Pope Hadrian (772-795) to send to Aachen a sacramentary “in pure form” so that it could be used as a model for liturgical books in the Frankish realm. Unfortunately the book the pope sent to him (the Hadrianum) proved to be not what Charlemagne was looking for: it was incomplete, lacking formularies for the Sundays of the year and some of the celebrations familiar to Frankish Christians, and it represented the more elaborate Papal liturgy rather than the simpler parish usage, which would have been a better model for Charlemagne’s purposes. As a result, a supplement was added to the Hadrianum to supply this defect. This supplemented, hybrid sacramentary - along with a chant tradition that was a fusion of Gallican and Roman chants - made its way back south across the Alps and into Rome, where it actually managed to supplant its parent liturgy and chant tradition (Old Roman Chant) and become the ‘standard’ liturgical practice under the Ottonian emperors (919-1024). This hybrid liturgy and chant is what we call today the ‘Roman Rite’ and ‘Gregorian Chant’.

Fast forward a bit to the time of the Great Schism. Rome in those days, in the wake of that fiasco, seem to have adopted the stance of having only one liturgy for the whole Western Church as a sign of unity and to centralize papal authority more. As a result some of the popes at the time took steps to actively suppress two distinct liturgies that still existed in those days: the Ambrosian rite used in Milan and surrounding areas, and the Mozarabic rite used in Spain, to no avail.

In Spain, Christians who lived under Muslim rule in Al-Andalus (the Mozarabs) preserved the old native liturgy, while the Christian kingdoms at the north have begun to adopt the Roman Rite. So a side effect of the Reconquista was the spread of the Roman liturgy throughout the peninsula and the increasing marginalization of the old Hispanic Rite. When Toledo was conquered in 1085, the question as to which rite Iberian Christians should follow inevitably came up, which led to various disputes (up to and including ordeals by fire and jousting duels) between the ‘Roman’ faction and the local Mozarabs. The Mozarabs were not willing to give up their rite, so they were eventually allowed to have six Mozarabic rite-only parishes in the city. Other Mozarabic communities were eventually also found in other ‘reconquered’ areas. Still, it did not stop the decline of the liturgy: it was in a very decrepit state by the late Middle Ages that it would have died were it not for the efforts of Cardinal Ximenes de Cisneros (nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition :D) in the 1500s. Pretty much the same thing happened in Milan, but the Ambrosian Rite weathered all difficulties more successfully than the Mozarabic Rite, in part because of more prominent supporters.


#11

Of course, by this time most of Europe was using the Roman rite - or to be more exact, local variants (or 'uses') thereof. Many local dioceses had their own form of the Roman liturgy: while the general structure and most of the standard prayers (for example the Canon, aka the Eucharistic prayer) is exactly the same, there were differences in incidental stuff like the calendar, in a few prayers at certain parts of the Mass, and especially in the rubrics. The confusing thing is, some of these 'uses' are also described as 'rites': for example, the Use of Sarum (used in Salisbury, England and other areas) is sometimes called the 'Sarum Rite'. The 'Lyonese Rite' is a variant of the Roman rite used at Lyons with some distinctive Gallican customs.

It was not just localities that had their own liturgy: many religious orders founded during the Middle Ages had their own as well. The Dominicans, for example, used the Dominican Rite; the Carmelites used the Carmelite Rite (aka the Rite of the Holy Sepulchre - the form of the Roman Rite that was also used by other orders founded within the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem like the Knights Templar or the Knights Hospitaller); the Carthusians had the Carthusian Rite; the Premonstratensians used the Premonstratensian Rite. (This does not apply to all religious orders: the Benedictines and the Franciscans had no particular 'Rite' of their own, although they do have their own customs. Orders founded after the Middle Ages like the Jesuits only use the Roman Rite.)

Pope Pius V's Quo Primum made the use of the 1570 Roman Missal obligatory throughout the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, except where there existed a different liturgy of at least two hundred years' standing. This permitted the survival of liturgies like the Mozarabic, the Ambrosian, the Lyonese, and some of the order rites; many areas however began to use the Tridentine Missal either because they did not make it past the two-hundred year limit or simply out of their own volition. (In England and Scotland, the medieval uses like that of Sarum were of course driven into extinction by the English and Scottish Reformation and its gradual abandonment by Catholic recusants.)

The introduction of the Ordinary Form in 1970 had further accelerated the decline of many of these rites: the Dominicans, Premonstratensians and Carmelites for example rarely use their own rite today (Carthusians seem to be the only ones who continue to do so on a regular basis). The Bragan Rite (a form of the Roman liturgy used in the Archdiocese of Braga, Portugal) is only celebrated on an optional basis since 1971.


#12

[quote="AveChriste11, post:7, topic:314923"]
I think there were other cases of the Mass being celebrated in other ways too, weren't there? Correct me if I have my history wrong, but I remember reading that Patriarch Michael Cerularius got upset when the Normans were imposed with Latinizations, and in a tongue-in-cheek move.. enforced the Byzantine Rite within all Latin churches which were in Constantinople. So why was it recommended that the Normans also worship in the standard Latin? This was before the advent of the Protestant Reformation..

[/quote]

It wasn't with the Normans but with Greeks living in Southern Italy. Much propaganda was disseminated by the Latins during this time about the "errors" of the Greek rite (this was before the mutual anathemas, mind you), and attempts were made to suppress it. In response, Michael Cerularius ordered all Latin Churches in Constantinople to be closed.


#13

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