Trads: the new "old Catholics"?

I had to shorten my quotation of you so my entry would fit.

I think there was a good movement to restore to the people a more active role in the liturgy which was enunciated by Pope Pius X and Sacrosanctum Concilium as the people being able to sing the parts of the Mass in Latin that are proper to them.

I have participated in this type of Tridentine Mass and I can say it is a wonderful blend of participation (the singing) as well as parts which are spoken, “et cum spiritu tuo”. Further there is a good amount of silence as well, and we had a good choir also singing. Also, the seminarians at FSSP are taught Gregorian chant not just for themselves, but so they can teach their congregations it as well.

As far as using the Latin goes, and why it is good, I refer you to Pope John XXIII’s Apostolic Constitution Veterum Sapientia:

adoremus.org/VeterumSapientia.html

Also, I see no reason why most Catholics, if they are going to attend Mass all their life, can’t learn enough Latin to understand the Mass. It’s really not that hard and would be worth it.

On paper, one can certainly see good intentions as far as what the Bishops of Vatican II wanted to do for the liturgy. However, I personally think that despite all good intentions, what it comes down to is what Archbishop Bugnini and his liturgical commission actually did with the liturgy. And to my mind, and many others, the result has been far from good. And I say this as someone who attends the Novus Ordo most of the time. For further reasons, I invite you to read Dietrich von Hildebrand’'s article which I’ve linked to in my signature line below.

I tend to look at things like liturgy and ecumenism via not so much the lofty intentions, but how it is actually carried out. Part of the issue with ecumenism is that it remains (to my mind) somewhat undefined and can undercut evangelism. It also seems to be pretty much a failure so far. For instance, we are further away from denominations like the Anglicans on moral issues than we ever were.

I also think evangelism applies to both individuals and nations.

As far as what Joseph Vacarelli suggests, I did come across this interview with him which coincides with some things he said in the book, I believe:

On Being Catholic American
ignatiusinsight.com/features2005/varacalli_amcatholic_may05.asp

In regards to Fatima, it is a given that up until 1984 Russia was not consecrated. There are those who say it was consecrated in 1984 (I’m not one). Our Lady promised the conversion of Russia and a time of peace if we consecrated Russia as she requested. Conversely, if we didn’t obey, and kept sinning, we were told that Russia would spread her errors (communism) throughout the world and the Church and Holy Father would have much to suffer. Here is an article which goes into more detail:

fatima.org/news/newsviews/062504frfox1.asp

Good discussion. God bless!

I believe traditionalist in the church play a vital role in keeping the Church aware of its history. Those that have chosen the path of disobedience and schism thought, have abandoned this role. I look for the traditional Catholics that have moved outside the Church to continue the split into two camps, one which will compromise enough to submit to authority and another which will become more stubborn and hardened in their rebellion. I look for this latter group to diminish in numbers and become an oddity like the Old Catholic Church by the next generation.

I’m a little confused. Are there multiple “old Catholic” groups? Because I remember looking at a website for an “old catholic” church, or dioceses or whatever it was and they seemed to be closer to the SSPX than permissive. I mean they had the Latin Mass and a big article about how people come to them because they don’t like the liberalism of the Catholic church…

SC #30: “To promote active participation, the people should be encouraged to take part by means of acclamations, responses, psalmody, antiphons, and songs, as well as by actions, gestures, and bodily attitudes. And at the proper times all should observe a reverent silence.”

#36.2: “… since the use of the mother tongue, whether in the Mass, the administration of the sacraments, or other parts of the liturgy, frequently may be of great advantage to the people, the limits of its employment may be extended.”

I have participated in this type of Tridentine Mass and I can say it is a wonderful blend of participation…

That’s nice, but now we have the Novus Ordo rite, and the Novus Ordo rite is the one the Church wants to succeed. It is designed to rebalance priest, choir, and people, and to effect a “noble simplicity” (#34)-- abuses to the contrary notwithstanding. The Mass had liturgical abuses for centuries prior to Trent, and since then as well.

Also, I see no reason why most Catholics, if they are going to attend Mass all their life, can’t learn enough Latin to understand the Mass. It’s really not that hard and would be worth it.

One of the outstanding problems of the Church is the almost total failure to make meaningful inroads into Asia. Latin is alien to them. And it is odd to suppose that we need a book to pray the Mass. At the chapels everyone has a book. Why really should that be necessary?

the result has been far from good. And I say this as someone who attends the Novus Ordo most of the time. For further reasons, I invite you to read Dietrich von Hildebrand’s article which I’ve linked to

DvH likes to think in terms of response to value, and he believes that one learns the response in the quiet of the Mass. But his conception of the Mass is not necessarily the conception that the Church wishes us to have. And yet, “at the proper times all should observe a reverent silence” (SC #30, regarding Mass). People say that at the new rite of Mass we are bobbing up and down and always saying this or doing that, but if you’re in the flow of it, I fail to see how it is not a reverent response to value. It is only a problem when it is too sentimental, too focused on eliciting a feeling, too noisy. These problems exist. But the earlier rite was also sometimes celebrated badly.

I tend to look at things like liturgy and ecumenism via not so much the lofty intentions, but how it is actually carried out.

I think we should strive to see with the mind of the Church. Traditionalists invest a lot of energy in not seeing with the mind of the Church. What we have seen, trying to rebalance priest, choir, and people, and trying to make participation “fully conscious, and active … which is demanded by the very nature of the liturgy” (SC #14): these interests have a long history.

Part of the issue with ecumenism is that it remains (to my mind) somewhat undefined and can undercut evangelism. It also seems to be pretty much a failure so far. For instance, we are further away from denominations like the Anglicans on moral issues than we ever were.

We are too divided and uncertain in some way. The light on the bushel basket isn’t burning brightly enough. But, I don’t know that it was before, either.

As far as what Joseph Vacarelli suggests, I did come across this interview with him which coincides with some things he said in the book, I believe:

*(10) The first task for the Catholic Church, then, is to restore integrity to the Catholic house through an intensive emphasis on authentic Catholic evangelization, catechesis, socialization, and education. In the language of sociology, the Catholic Church must rebuild its “plausibility structure” …

(11) … the maintaining of 1) the Catholic tradition in all its majesty and sophistication, 2) high standards of professionalism and competence, and 3) constantly reinforcing communication and social interaction.*

I would add that we must be conscious of what the Church is trying to accomplish and how HMC is trying to work.

In regards to Fatima,

I’m not interested in Fatima for this discussion. What I said was, that the influence of the Catholic leaven didn’t prevent a whole series of incredible catastrophes in the century prior to 1960. So how much influence did it really have?

Yes, there are variants. Over the next century, the traditionalists may come to be rather varied as well. Their position now is, that while they disagree on ecclesial structure issues, they agree on the faith. But, they’re just getting started. I do think they have a better position than the OCs did at their start. But think what a century or more can do with conspiracy theories, and continued drift in the kalendar. Working out ecclesial issues itself is very taxing. Also they are uncertain about which version of the TLM they should be using. Some like the 1950s, others the 1960s. Anyway it may never be like the OCs, just total drift, but it’s hard to predict what 100 years of disputed relations can do. Consider the Eastern Orthodox. They tend to be very ethnically oriented. Had the schism there not occurred, they might not have that defect in their midst. The East always was more ethnically split with heavier influence of despotic rulers and the like, from what I understand, so naturally it came to infect the Orthodox all the more when they split away. But apart from Rome, it just remains a defect. Unity heals problems over time. Being on your own makes your problems worse.

I find this thread to be totally offensive- to compare those like us (www.materecclesiae.org) and others to the “Old Catholics” who rejected a truth revealed by God, the Primacy of the Bishop of Rome and the charism of infalibility.

Even the SSPX does not reject divine truth defined by the Roman Pontiff. Their Bishops may be schismatics on the surface presently but in no way are they such as “old catholics” and neither am I or anyone I know who attends my little chapel run by the Diocese of Camden that has everything 100 percent Traditional Latin Mass and Traditional Roman Ritual.

Ken

There is always a heresy implicit in any schism, namely that there is salvation outside the Church for those who willingly and knowingly remain outside of it; and that the graces of sacraments performed outside the Church will save one simply because they are valid.

There are also heretical versions of “sola traditio” that would deprive the visible Church of her rightful authority to modify her own liturgy or to teach with authority. In fact, the Motu Propio Ecclesia Dei does mention this error, though it doesn’t give it a catchy name.

Also sadly ironic is the frequent occurence of heretical liberal arguments prevalent in ultratraditional schisms used to justify their own existence.

And let’s not forget Feeneyism, which some people even within the Church believe and teach as a valid interpretation of Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus, in spite of its being contradicted by Pius IX’s Quanto Conficiamor Morerore and explicitly rejected by Pius XII’s letter excommunicating Feeney. (They even go so far as to suggest that Feeney’s reconciliation annuls Pius’s doctrinal teaching).

There are also Donatist tendencies, attaching “true Catholicism” to a small group that by definition excludes the Magisterium.

Make no mistake, there is doctrinal error all over the place in the case of schismatic traditionalism. Obviously the things I listed here don’t all apply to every group or even to most groups, but they are common enough.

Sacrosanctum Concilium:

    1. Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites.

I would say, however, that while SC emphasized that Latin should retain be preserved in the Mass, it also left the liturgy wide open to vernacularization.

Here’s an article which expands on that argument:

latin-mass-society.org/ferrara.htm

Also, if you have not read it, this is an excellent article by Fr. Joseph Fessio on the Mass and Vatican II. Here is a quote:

"Now there should be no argument about the central intent of the Council concerning the liturgy. The Council actually spells out its intent, in paragraph 14 of Sacrosanctum Concilium: “Mother Church earnestly desires that all the faithful should be led to that full, conscious, and active participation in liturgical celebrations, which is demanded by the very nature of the liturgy.” The key words here are “full, conscious, and active participation.” The Latin for “active participation” is participatio actuosa.

I did a little research into previous uses of that expression "active participation] in papal and other ecclesial documents. The first papal usage was in 1903 by Pope St. Pius X, whose motto was “Omnia Instaurare in Christo” (To restore all things in Christ). He considered himself a pope of renewal. He was elected in August of 1903 and in November, he issued one of the first documents of his pontificate, a motu proprio called Tra Le Solicitudini, that is, “Among the Concerns.” This was a document on the renewal of sacred music. In it, the Holy Father states, “In order that the faithful may more actively participate in the sacred liturgy, let them be once again made to sing Gregorian Chant as a congregation.”

That’s what the term “active participation” meant when it was first used in a papal document. But it had been used ten years earlier in another document, issued by Pius X before he was pope. He was the patriarch of Venice, and the document — as it turns out — was actually written by a Jesuit, with the wonderful name of Angelo dei Santi (“angel of the saints”). Sounds like a fictitious name."

ignatiusinsight.com/features2005/fessio_massv2_1_jan05.asp

(cont.)

(cont.)

In any case, the first use of actuosa participatio, i.e., active participation, referred explicitly and exclusively to the restoration of the congregational singing of Gregorian Chant. In 1928, Pope Pius XI reiterated the point in his Apostolic Letter, Divini Cultus. Nineteen years after that, in the Magna Carta of liturgical reform, Mediator Dei, issued by Pius XII, the same term was used with the same meaning. So until the Second Vatican Council, the term “active participation” referred exclusively to the singing of Gregorian Chant by the people.

ignatiusinsight.com/features2005/fessio_massv2_1_jan05.asp

So that goes into the actual history of the term “active participation” or “pariticipatio actuosa”.

And also regarding Latin, I stand by the arguments of Pope John XXIII in Veterum Sapientia (adoremus.org/VeterumSapientia.html) which I find far weightier and stronger than any arguments for the vernacular (though I recognize the use of the vernacular as Fr. Fessio outlined above).

I usually restrict my arguments to both liturgies celebrated without abuses, although I think the abuses in use of the Novus Ordo have been more numerous and stronger than those done with the Tridentine Mass.

Asia is a particular issue and their language is significantly different than ours. However, from what I understand, the Council Fathers had no intention, or idea, that the Mass would be celebrated completely in the vernacular. I think there is a real difference between the modest reforms the Council Fathers intended and what ended up happening with the New Mass.

SC may speak about silence, but from what I have experienced, there is very little silence in the Novus Ordo, and that usually only comes because the Priest chooses to have some silence, say after he sits down after his homily.

While Dietrich von Hildebrand recognized the value of silence, no doubt, he writes explicitly about the value of the Old liturgy vs. the New. So there has to be a value response not so much in what was written in SC, but what we actually got from Archbishop Bugnini’s committee.

Whether or not Dietrich von Hildebrand’s conception of the Mass is one the Church wishes us to have, I invite anyone to read the link to his article on the Mass I posted at my signature line (or read anything else he has written on the liturgy for that matter). To my mind, he had one of the most profound understandings of the supernatural nature of the liturgy I have ever seen in print.

I simply don’t equate approving of Pope Paul VI’s New Mass as “seeing with the mind of the Church.” I can see the good the Council Fathers were trying to do with SC. But I agree with Christopher Ferrara’s article I linked above that there are loopholes in it which allowed Archbishop Bugnini and his committee to draft a New Mass which went (much) farther than most of the Council Fathers had envisioned.

I brought up Fatima because it goes precisely to why we had so much trouble (and still have trouble) prior to 1960. If heaven asks you to do something, and you don’t do it, there are consequences as Our Lady spelled out.

Setting aside Fatima for the moment, however, I don’t necessarily expect the Church to have so much influence that she can stop wars or bring peace among nations. Her primary mission is the salvation of souls.

My concern, prayer, and hope is that the Church militant takes a strong stand in the midst of today’s society, regardless of how successful we are. And by strong stand I also include in her liturgy, art, and architecture. Though I do think the Church prior to 1960 was definitely stronger and had more influence than she does today. God bless.

We must not fall into error of lumping the faithful traditional Catholics with the unfaithful. I believe the original post did this. Catholics who attend the TLM under the authority of the diocesesan bishop are no more likely to have a problem than any other Catholic, or any other parish.

Your article link about active participation states:

So the Council itself defines the primary aim of liturgical renewal: full, conscious and active participation. How does the Council initially intend for the aim to be achieved? That, also, is not something we have to guess at or speculate on: “And, therefore, pastors of souls must zealously strive to achieve it by means of the necessary instruction in all their pastoral work.” The Council’s idea is clear: the liturgy is to be renewed by promoting more active participation through the means of greater education. Nothing whatsoever is said here about any kind of changes or reform of the rite itself.

But in fact, SC states, #21:

In this restoration, both texts and rites should be drawn up so that they express more clearly the holy things which they signify; the Christian people, so far as possible, should be enabled to understand them with ease and to take part in them fully, actively, and as befits a community.

So there is more to it than mere education.

Pius X began his efforts with music, partly because there were so many problems with music at the time, and because the Church had been focusing on music. Leo XIII had been working on this. Since Trent they’d been struggling with this. But Pius X also lowered the age of Communion, mitigated the eucharistic fast for the sick, and revamped the Breviary to resuscitate lapsed Sunday Mass liturgies. The principle of the people having a full, conscious, and active role continued to be amplified and applied over time. And in any case, for the people to make acclamations is basically the same as singing, except that they aren’t singing.

As for Latin, increasing interest in setting it aside also grew, together with concern that Asia was not being reached in a meaningful way. It is possible to excogitate lofty reasons for Latin but we can also pursue the virtues of the vernacular: in any case the clear mind of the Church is that the people participate actively, and this they do in their own language.

SC may speak about silence, but from what I have experienced, there is very little silence in the Novus Ordo, and that usually only comes because the Priest chooses to have some silence, say after he sits down after his homily.

In Letters to a Doubter (1907-1914) Paul Claudel writes of “decadence inside the Church”: “Of no consequence. Truth has no relation to the number of people whom it persuades. Few go to Mass today: few also understand Pindar or Parsifal. You have to answer for your own soul, not those of others.” Somewhere in the book he also remarks that the Sunday Mass is always a hubbub. As for few going to Mass and it being equated with Pindar, I think the mind of the Church is that this is not adequate.

To my mind, he [DvH] had one of the most profound understandings of the supernatural nature of the liturgy I have ever seen in print.

But, in that instance he tries to get the reader to not appreciate what the Church is doing. As much as I have enjoyed and benefitted from his writings, I want to appreciate what the Church is doing.

I don’t necessarily expect the Church to have so much influence that she can stop wars or bring peace among nations. Her primary mission is the salvation of souls.

The argument about the earlier order of Mass is that it has more graces than the new order, and that the Church was better able to sanctify the people, and be leaven in the world, through the earlier ways. But, the century prior to the year 1960 was calamitous to be sure. It was popular to say that there were Communists everywhere. But weren’t there also Christians everywhere?

My concern, prayer, and hope is that the Church militant takes a strong stand in the midst of today’s society, regardless of how successful we are. And by strong stand I also include in her liturgy, art, and architecture. Though I do think the Church prior to 1960 was definitely stronger and had more influence than she does today. God bless.

Admirable. I, too, would like the Church to be influential by being effective leaven, in her sacraments and in her faithful. But, we have to be united. Traditionalists have invested a lot of energy in trying to not understand the mind of the Church. And, I think they are at risk of instability by setting themselves apart.

You can if you get so wrapped in what YOU are doing and lose sight what the CHURCH is doing.

And of course up until Bugnini’s reform SC and the Council Fathers did not envision the Mass going entirely vernacular. Thus they believed “active participation” could be accomplished with Latin. Further, as the article I linked elucidated, when previous Popes wrote about participatio actuosa they referred to Gregorian chant sung in Latin; thus they certainly believed Latin and participatio actuoso could go hand in hand.

I don’t have the quote right here, I think it was from Dom Alcuin Reid, but prior to the 1960’s any prelate who wanted to “set aside” Latin entirely was looked upon as on the outer fringes of the liturgical movement.

The silence of the Tridenine Mass is built in, with the Novus Ordo it is not.

Well, there were certainly more conversions and a greater percentage of people assisting at Mass prior to the changes.

The fact is that the release of the New Mass was a prudential decision. While the Novus Ordo is valid, there are many who have debated its merits strongly. Other than Dietrich von Hildebrand there has been Cardinal Ratzinger, Cardinal Ottaviani, Dom Alcuin Reid, Fr. Aidan Nichols, Fr. George Rutler, etc. Just because they critique the Novus Ordo does not mean they are not thinking with the mind of the Church as there was no guarantee that Bugnini and his committee “thought with the mind of the Church” when they reworked the liturgy. Here is a good quote from Karl Keating:

We need to be accurate in what is said about these matters.

While Vatican II looked forward to a reform of the liturgy, it did not mandate the shape of that reform. In fact, the Council fathers said that Latin should retain “pride of place.” There is no evidence that many of them intended to do away with Latin through a wholesale embrace of the vernacular.

The liturgical changes were decided upon after the close of the Council. They cannot be found in the Council documents themselves.

Inasmuch as the Council was not specific about what the reform should accomplish, it hardly is appropriate to argue that those who dislike aspects of the reform are in some way opposing the will of the Holy Spirit.


Karl

forums.catholic.com/showpost.php?p=961411&postcount=88

I dont think this can accurately describe the Traditionalist movement.

Many Trads feel that the mainstream church is being isolated from Tradition…not tradition isolated from the Church.

Actually, a better analogy would be that radical traditionalists are closer to rigorist groups like the 17th century Jansenists or 5th century Donatists, who imagined themselves as being part of the “true” Church and tended to act as though they were a separate group, yet denying that they were schismatics. Old Catholics as they exist today tend to be more like Protestants in their practices, as evidenced by the fact that these Utrecht Churches are in some form of communion with the Anglicans.

Full communion now, actually.

Can you seriously ask how it is possible that the Church might act imprudently? Men make decisions for the Church - men are 100% capable of imprudence, thus there is a full logical possibility that even with the guidance of the Holy Spirit the Church can act imprudently. Even when exerting a fully honest effort to do the best thing, the Church has never taught that she is guaranteed to make the best decisions possible in all situations. She will simply not make decisions that oppose faith and morals.

In fact, the secretary of the CDW, Abp. Ranjith, sees a need to ask the very questions you seem to think are impossible. (http://www.catholicexchange.com/node/59628) His opening statement in the interview summarizes his sentiments:

“What I wished to insist on in those interviews was that the post-conciliar reform of the liturgy has not been able to achieve the expected goals of spiritual and missionary renewal in the Church so that today we could be truly happy about it.
Undoubtedly there have been positive results too; but the negative effects seem to have been greater, causing much disorientation in our ranks. The churches have become empty, liturgical free-wheeling has become the order of the day, and the true meaning and significance of that which is celebrated has been obscured.
One has to, then, begin wondering if the reform process had in fact been handled correctly. Thus, we need to take a good look at what had happened, pray and reflect about its causes and with the help of the Lord move on to make the necessary corrections.”

Now, as to the part of your post I bolded, you’ll have to take that up with Pius XII, who I suppose you must regard as some traditionalist mental lightweight. You don’t think uniting one’s soul to the prayer of the priest is participation, but luckily you have no place in the Magisterium. If you think the obvious historical teaching of the Church is just boilerplate, there’s no room for a genuine discussion of whether the changes of the Novus Ordo have done a better job of fostering this essential element of participation in the Mass.

And since the Council the Catholic influence on the world didn’t prevent the abortion holocaust, the AIDS epidemic, the redefinition of marriage, the rise and fall of any number of tyrannical Latin American regimes, the defection of Europe from the faith, the exploitation of embryos for purposes of both illicit reproduction and destructive research, the unchecked evil influence of “Catholic” politicians throughout the West, the UN turning a blind eye to ethnic cleansing (in the Balkans, East Timor, Darfur, et al.), an entire world security structure based on the gravely immoral principle of MAD - something shared with the preconciliar era but of which the postconciliar years own more, and other evils. How much effect does that amount to?

I think the Church’s ability to affect society would enter into a discussion of the prudence of its decisions, but I don’t think that can be reduced to comparisons of which great evils still managed to occur.

if anything, with the wave of orthodoxy and holiness coming the new evangelization and springtime, it’s the “progressives” (i hate the titles) who are going to be the "old catholics"
i dont want novelty. i want Christ.
its the same with everyone else.
they will know you my disciples because you love one another. no one wants my love, or your love, they want Jesus’ love. and we will go to wherever we find that.
unfortunately, many of us are getting tired. some have been fighting longer than others, hanging on in this or that lukewarm parish. then you have places like franciscan university.
and there is hope. remember, THOSE students are the immediate future of the Church. we just all need to hold on for dear life.

but yeah, the “traditionalists” make a big statement. sometimes it comes of as a negative one, often as a seperation kind of thing. but i find it hard to blame 'em anymore. a word of caution from our good friend Fr. Corapi
you can fall off the boat on the left or the right side. stay on the bark of Peter.
it’s as simple as that. obedience to the Pope, who had an enormous job of trying to steer the Church through a typhoon right now.
not saying all ‘traditonalists’ are schismatic or something, just saying, what are our motivations? to have things the way we think they ought to be? or to bring Christ to people?

just some thoughts and a minor rant :thumbsup:
Mordocai

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