In illo témpore: Accessérunt ad Iesum pharisaei: et interrogávit eum unus ex eis legis doctor, tentans eum: Magíster, quod est mandátum magnum in lege? Ait illi Iesus: Díliges Dóminum, Deum tuum, ex toto corde tuo et in tota ánima tua et in tota mente tua. Hoc est máximum et primum mandátum. Secúndum autem símile est huic: Díliges próximum tuum sicut teípsum. In his duóbus mandátis univérsa lex pendet et prophétæ. Congregátis autem pharisaeis, interrogávit eos Iesus, dicens: Quid vobis vidétur de Christo? cuius fílius est? Dicunt ei: David. Ait illis: Quómodo ergo David in spíritu vocat eum Dóminum, dicens: Dixit Dóminus Dómino meo, sede a dextris meis, donec ponam inimícos tuos scabéllum pedum tuórum? Si ergo David vocat eum Dóminum, quómodo fílius eius est? Et nemo poterat ei respóndere verbum: neque ausus fuit quisquam ex illa die eum ámplius interrogáre.
At that time, the Pharisees came to Jesus and one of them, a doctor of the Law, putting Him to the test, asked Him, Master, which is the great commandment in the Law? Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And the second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets. Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus questioned them, saying, What do you think of the Christ? Whose son is He? They said to Him, David’s. He said to them, How then does David in the spirit call Him Lord, saying, The Lord said to my Lord: Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool?’ If David, therefore, calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his son? And no one could answer Him a word; neither did anyone dare from that day forth to ask Him any more questions.
Continuation ☩ of the Holy Gospel according to Matthew Matt 22:34-46
The Pharisee calls Christ “Master”; this is a deceptive lie. Only the son may call his father, “father”; and only student may call his teacher, “teacher”; so it follows that only the disciple may call his master, “master”. The Pharisee is not a disciple of Christ. He does not follow Christ nor is he seeking instruction from Christ. He therefore has not right to address Christ as “Master”. It is true that Christ is God and is therefore the Lord and Master of all, but those who refuse Him the love and obedience due to Him break off this relationship. The heretic, schismatic, pagan, and Jew have no true relationship with Christ and therefore have no relationship to God. He is their Creator but because of their rebellion against Him they are no longer sons of God but rather sons of the devils who now inspire and guide them in this life so that they will reach eternity and enter into Hell with them.
Second Church in Preston given new life in the care of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest
Today was a source of great joy for the Diocese of Lancaster, the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest (ICKSP) and the traditions of the Catholic Church in England and Wales as the ICKSP took charge of St Thomas of Canterbury and The English Martyrs Church in Preston.
A pontifical High Mass celebrated by the Rt. Rev. Michael Campbell OSA, the Bishop of Lancaster in the presence of Monsignor Gilles Wach, Prior General of the ICKSP took place to mark this occasion.
The church is in the gothic style by Edward Welby Pugin and the church was initially meant to have a spire, but a lack of funds prevented it from being built!
St Thomas of Canterbury and The English Martyrs is built at the site of what was once known as Gallows Hill and the site if executions in the wake of the 1715 rebellion.
Pugin had prepared ambitious plans but these were revisited due to the estimated cost of £7825 10 shillings! The amendments saw the new plans not have a west tower. The church (still not finished) was opened on 12th December 1867.
In 1888, the church was enlarged at the east end of the nave and sanctuary, to E.W. Pugin’s designs. This increased the accommodation by a third, providing for another 500 people, and cost £8,000
A narthex was created as recently as 1965 and this was at the expense of interior seating. Unfortunately, a fire occurred in 2000 and the restoration work saw the creation of a Parish Room at the expense of confessionals.
The homily delivered by Bishop Campbell can be read here.
A reminder that no Mass will take place at St Winefride's, Holywell on Sunday 24th September.
Continuation of the holy Gospel according to St. Luke, 14. 1-11.
At the sight of the sick man who stands before him, Jesus is filled with compassion. He cures the affliction even though He knows that there are those who will criticize him for curing on the Sabbath. Jesus acts in a forthright manner. He pays no heed to human respect, to what others will say. His critics consider themselves to be the authentic interpreters of the Law. Later on, the Lord will show them that mercy should be exercised even on the Sabbath. He provides an example gleaned from the common sense of the countryside. We may find obstacles to our faith in the environment around us, such as envy, prejudice and misunderstandings due to ignorance. Our response should be the same as that of Jesus. We should not be afraid to give clear testimony to our beliefs. This type of behaviour can be of great apostolic value. On the other hand, “it is terrible how much harm we can do if we allow ourselves to be carried away by the fear or the shame of being seen as Christians in ordinary life” [St. Josemaría Escrivá, Furrow, 36]. Let us not fail to make manifest our Christian faith, always with humility and naturalness, whenever the situation requires it. We will never regret having acted in a manner so consistent with our deepest beliefs. The Lord will be filled with joy at such evidence of our fidelity.
Commentary from In Conversation With God by Fr. Francis Fernandez-Carvajal.
Populus Summorum Pontifcum: Final Day - High Mass (Dominican Rite) at the Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini
There were numerous rites celebrated in Latin at the time of the Council of Trent. At the time Mass was codifed, those rites that had existed for in excess of 200 years or older were given recognition in Quo Primum promulgated by Pope Pius V on the 14 July 1570.
The Dominican rite is a form of Mass that has remained unchanged since the 13th Century, when the Dominican order was founded. It is a variation on the Roman Rite that perhaps we are more acquainted with.
The differences between the Dominican Rite and the Roman are numerous and even vary within the expression of the Mass (Low, Sung or High). For example, at Dominican Low Mass, the celebrant wears the amice over his head until the beginning of Mass and immediately prepares the chalice upon reaching the altar.
He says neither the Introibo ad altare Dei nor the Psalm 42 Judica me, instead saying Confitemini Domino quoniam bonus, with the server responding Quoniam in saeculum misericordia ejus. St Dominic is mentioned in an abbreviated Confiteor. Both Gloria and the Credo are commenced at the centre of the altar and concluded at the Missal. At the Offertory there is a concurrent oblation of the Host and the chalice and only one prayer, Suscipe Sancta Trinitas.
The Roman Canon is used as per the Vetus Ordo, but the priest has slightly different postures for some parts of the Canon, his hands are folded, and immediately after the consecration, for the Unde et Memores, he also holds his arms in a cruciform position (a photo of this posture is shown below).
The Agnus Dei is said immediately after the Pax Domini and then are said the prayers Hæc sacrosancta commixtio, Domine Iesu Christe and Corpus et sanguis, then for the Communion, the priest receiving the Host from his left hand. No prayers are said at the consumption of the Precious Blood. I will briefly explain the use of the instrumenta pacis/Pax brede applicable at Solemn High Mass below.
Indeed, today's celebration was a solemn High Mass, hosted at the Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini, the Rome Church of the Fraternitas Sacerdotalis Sancti Petri (FSSP). The celebrant was Rev. Fr. Dominique-Marie de Saint-Laumer, General Prior of the Fraternity of St. Vincent Ferrer.
Above I have attempted to explain some key differences as they occur at Low Mass, in the solemn expression of the Dominican rite the above occur but additionally, the chalice is brought in procession to the altar during the singing of the Gloria and during the Epistle by the subdeacon, the deacon unfolds the corporal and the deacon goes onto prepare the chalice after the subdeacon ends the Epistle.
The chalice is removed from the altar by the subdeacon and is taken to the celebrant who is seated on the Epistle side. The celebrant then pours the wine and water into it and it is taken back to the altar. Thereafter, some postural and positional variances from the Roman Rite occur and the incensing of the ministers occurs during the singing of the Preface unlike the Roman Rite.
At the Pax, the instrumenta pacis (sometimes called the Pax brede) is used. After the priest has dropped the particle into the chalice, immediately after the recitation of the Agnus Dei, the priest recites the mingling formula and kisses the chalice. The deacon approaches on the priest's right, takes up the instrument, and presents it to the priest to kiss. He then kisses the instrument himself and descends to the subdeacon. He presents it for him to kiss, saying Pax tibi et Ecclesiae Dei sanctae. He then gives him the instrument so that he can perform the same rite for the two acolytes. The subdeacon then proceeds to ‘give the peace’ to the friars in choir before returning the instrument to the altar placing it on the Epistle side of the corporal.
This was beautiful ending liturgy to a most wonderful number of days in the Eternal City to witness our Catholic Tradition.
The Holy Fathers are accustomed to derive a spiritual lesson from the miracle recorded in the Gospel of this day.... This was a young man borne out to his burial, and his mother is weeping over him. The mother is the Church, who has born him in baptism, when he was born again and became her child.
He has fallen away, and is dead in sin. He is here carried on his way, like Dives, to be buried in hell. How awfully he is carried forth! Slowly, but sure, as the course of a funeral. Describe his odiousness—death so fearful, every one shrinks from the sight. Children in the streets turn away.
Those only bear it who love the corpse, or have duties towards it. So with the soul. How angels must shrink from the dead soul!—the guardian angel bears it. How horrible it looks even if in venial sin, much more in mortal! The mother bears it—the Church does not excommunicate. Its bearers are four: (1) pride, (2) sensuality, (3) unbelief, (4) ignorance.
We see these from Adam’s original sin, and they are in every sinner, though perhaps in a different order in different persons. There are those who go on, through God’s mercy, in the right way. But I am speaking of cases of sin. Now I believe generally pride comes first— obstinacy of children; disobedience; quarrelling; refusing to say prayers; avoiding holy places, etc.
Thus the soul being left open to the evil one, he proceeds to assault it with sensuality. A person does not know when he is proud, but sensuality need not be described, for everyone who yields to it knows what it is. God has set a mark upon it, the mark of sting of conscience, because it is so pleasant; whereas pride is unpleasant to the person who exercises it. Pride and sensuality give birth to unbelief. A man begins to doubt and disbelieve. Fourth, ignorance. At last he does not know right from wrong. And thus a soul is led out to be buried, to be buried in hell. And how many reach that eternal tomb!
Wonderful electing grace of God, choosing one and not another, coming without merit—the Church cannot do it. We all have received this electing grace without merit. Let us prize it when we have it.
Commentary from the sermon notes of Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890)
Populus Summorum Pontifcum: Day Three - Eucharistic Adoration, Procession and Pontifical Mass at the Chair of St Peter
Today was the main event of the Populus Summorum Pontificum pilgrimage.
Commencing with Eucharistic Adoration at Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa Nuova) celebrated by Fr. Jean-Cyrille Sow FSSP, newly appointed parish priest of the Trinità dei Pellegrini Church, a procession through the Eternal City took place led by The Most Reverend Abp. Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.
The almost never ending wave of clergy and faithful eventually arrived at the Vatican Basilica for Holy Mass at the Chair, celebrated by Abp. Pozzo who replaced His Eminence Carlo Cardinal Caffarra, who passed away very recently. Requiescat in pace.
Here is a photographic record of a momentous day for Tradition in the Holy Roman Church.
Santa Maria Sopra Minerva is a Dominican church located in Piazza della Minerva close to the Pantheon area in Central Rome within a district known as the Campus Martius. The church's name derives from the fact that the first Christian church structure on the site was built directly over the ruins of a temple dedicated to the Egyptian goddess Isis, which had been wrongly ascribed to the Greco-Roman goddess Minerva.
Responding to the call of Archbishop Pozzo, (secretary of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei') that all Traditional priestly institutes and orders come to Rome for the 10th anniversary of Summorum Pontificum, the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest were present in great number tonight for High Mass celebrated by their Prior General Monsignor Gilles Wach in the presence of His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke.
This feast dates back to the 12th century. It was especially promoted by the Cistercians and the Servites, so much so that in the 14th and 15th centuries it was widely celebrated throughout the Catholic Church. In 1482 the feast was added to the Missal under the title of "Our Lady of Compassion." Pope Benedict XIII added it to the Roman Calendar in 1727 on the Friday before Palm Sunday. In 1913, Pope Pius X fixed the date on September 15.
It it the titular of the Cathedral Church at Wrexham.
From the hour of Matins, Lection 8:
Mary, the Mother of the Lord, stood by the Cross of her Son. My only informant of this fact is the holy Evangelist John. Others have written that when the Lord suffered, the earth quaked, the heavens were veiled in darkness, the sun was hidden, and the thief received, after a good confession, the promise of Paradise. John hath taught us what the others have not taught us. Upon the Cross He called her Mother. It is reckoned (by John) a greater thing that in the moment of triumph over agony, He should have discharged the watchful duty of a Son to His Mother, than that He should have made gift of the kingdom of heaven. For if it be a sacred thing to have forgiven the thief, this so great kindness of the Son to the Mother is to be worshipped as the outcome of a tenderer and more touching love.
Archbishop Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, delivered this address to the Fifth Summorum Pontificum Conference in Rome on Thursday 14th September.
Public opinion has seen the motu proprio as a concession to so-called traditionalist groups, and particularly as a way of bringing closer the Priestly Fraternity of St Pius X, and overcoming the break with it. Certainly, it cannot be denied that this motive was at the center of attention, since no Catholic can rejoice over a rift in the Church. However, it would be oversimplifying and completely insufficient to regard only this motive. In the letter that accompanied the motu proprio, Benedict XVI reaffirmed that the Second Vatican Council did not abrogate the old liturgical books, but wanted a revision of them, without rupture or the cancellation of the previous tradition. The motu proprio, therefore, does not aim for liturgical uniformity, but rather for reconciliation within the Church, bringing the two Forms, Ordinary and Extraordinary, to live together beside each other, respecting their specific characteristics, since in the history of the liturgy, there has always been a multiplicity of rites, and variants within the Roman Rite.
From this point of view, we can calmly state that our appraisal of this decade has been mostly positive, since, recognition of this has grown within many individual dioceses, and mutual distrust has progressively decreased, albeit slowly, and not without some initial difficulties. Especially in France and the United States, where celebrations of the Mass in the Extraordinary Form are more numerous, the result can be considered fruitful and encouraging, thanks also to the apostolic work of the institutes under the jurisdiction of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei. In France particularly, in a great many dioceses, at least one place is found where the Mass is celebrated in the usus antiquior. The interest in the ancient liturgy has been a positive surprise also in the Far East and Eastern Europe. The reception has been fair in Italy, although more so in some regions than others. Some statistics may be of interest, comparing the situation of ten years ago with that of today.
In France, there were 104 Sunday celebrations of the old rite in 2007; today there are 221 (more than double); if those of the Society of St Pius X are included, the number reaches 430.
In Germany, there were 35 Sunday celebrations in 2007; today there are 54, 153 if monthly Masses are included, and those celebrated only on weekdays.
In Great Britain, there were 18 Sunday celebrations in 2007; in 2017, 40.
In Italy, there were 30 in 2007; in 2017, 56 on Sundays, 107 if monthly and weekday Masses are included.
In the United States, there were 230 in 2007, while today there are 480, not including those of the Society of St Pius X.
In Poland, there were only 5, while in 2017 there are 40.
Despite these encouraging statistics, this does not mean that all the problems have been substantially resolved. There exist problems of a practical nature, as for example, the scarcity of priests available or suitable for celebrating the Mass in the Vetus Ordo. This often prevents the local Ordinary from satisfying the requests of a stable group of the faithful. There are also problems linked to ideological prejudices, and others of a more pastoral character. Some bishops complain that individual groups of the faithful within a stable group are not always properly integrated into the pastoral life of the local Church, with the risk of a certain isolation. This isolation, however, is not due to the use of the Extraordinary Form, but to other factors which the local Church must examine specifically. It is the duty of the Ordinary, obviously, to guarantee harmony and active participation in the life of the diocese, in conformity with the universal law of the Church. The priest charged by the bishop to celebrate the usus antiquior should have an important role in encouraging such harmony and participation on the part of the faithful who members of a stable group attached to the Extraordinary Form.
From the qualitative point of view, I consider it very important to speak of the mental and spiritual attitude of most of the faithful who follow the ancient liturgy. It is not the attitude of people oriented towards the past, but an expression of their will and desire to anchor the spirit in something perennial, to the treasury of grace preserved in the liturgical patrimony of the tradition. Precisely because this patrimony is perennial, even in its liturgical form, it is always current. As Pope Benedict XVI declared in the letter that accompanied the motu proprio, “What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful.
The fact that many of the faithful who participate in the rite of the Vetus Ordo are young, and come from young families, shows that it is not “nostalgia” for the past that motivates their choice. In this regard, it is very promising that young priests are more available for and open to (celebration of the old rite.) It is clear that their preparation for it is taking place already during their seminary formation. In this regard, we must take note of the delay or negligence on the part of most seminaries in teaching the Extraordinary Form of the liturgy for those seminarians who are interested in it, which obviously includes places where there exist pastoral needs for celebration of the ancient Roman Rite.
We certainly must also mention the constant increase in priestly vocations in the institutes under the jurisdiction of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, in particular the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter, the Institute of Christ the King, and the Institute of the Good Shepherd.
In an appraisal that seeks to be precise, but not superficial or polemical, we cannot ignore that fact that in some places, and in specific cases, there are still difficulties in the application and reception of the teaching and norms of the motu proprio and the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei follow-up instruction Universae Ecclesiae. This should certainly not surprise us, since these difficulties are part of a broader context, and regard more generally the common understanding of the Second Vatican Council, spread by the reception and application of the Council’s teaching, and a certain way of understanding it. This common understanding is based on rupture and discontinuity with Tradition, and with the integrity and fullness of the Catholic Faith handed down by the Church’s constant Magisterium. However, we must also recognize that in the years following the publication of the motu proprio, many difficulties have been overcome, and there is in general on the part of the bishops and clergy a greater favorability towards those who prefer the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. Often, the Ordinary’s inability to satisfy the request of the faithful who ask for the celebration of the Mass in the old liturgy arises, as I mentioned earlier, from the lack of priests who are not only willing, but also suitable (i.e., truly capable) of celebrating the sacred rite in the Extraordinary Form.
To conclude this brief appraisal, I believe we can recognize that since Summorum Pontificum has become legally active, there has been a large recovery, on the part of many of the faithful, and especially of young priests and laity, of this patrimony of the Church. This patrimony is a treasure to guard, and pass on in all its beauty and holiness, without ideological interference from any party. This will surely be to the benefit of all, even those who follow the Ordinary Form of the liturgy.
In order to consider prospects for the future in a manner both sincere and thorough, I think it necessary to return to a fundamental aspect of Summorum Pontificum, namely, the desire to heal the rift, not just liturgical, but ecclesiological, between the old and the new. Instead of opposing the old rite to the new, I believe that the old rite, with its patrimony of faith and holiness, can greatly enrich the new; while the new, in its turn, can represent that rightful aspiration for theological and liturgical development in continuity and fidelity to tradition.
Precisely because the liturgical reform desired by Paul VI had the purpose of bringing about this development, ordered in continuity with Tradition, we can and must ask ourselves: what are the causes of the eclipse of the Sacred which overwhelmed the Church’s liturgy after the reform, and drove many Catholics to seek elsewhere, outside the Church, the answer to man’s irrepressible longing for God and mystery? It is more significant than ever that Benedict XVI, in the letter which accompanied the publication of the motu proprio, at one point states, “The reestablishment of the Vetus Ordo of the Roman Missal will help the celebration of the Mass according to the Missal of Paul VI to demonstrate, more powerfully than has been the case hitherto, that sacrality which attracts many people to the former usage.
Therefore, we see that the discussion of future prospects for the ancient use of the rite is not principally a discussion about quantity (the increase in the number of such celebrations, or the number of stable groups that request it, etc.) It is a discussion about quality and substance, which is to say, one that regards the destiny of the resurgence of the life of faith and the Church’s liturgical life.
Here, then, lies the crucial point of the disputes about the old liturgy and the reformed one. The reestablishment of the Vetus Ordo, its great contribution, should be seen as the antidote to that arbitrary creativity (in liturgy) which causes mystery to disappear, and to the alarming tendencies which minimize the sacrificial nature of the Eucharist, especially in the name of a false idea of greater comprehension and accessibility to the Sacrament.
On the other hand, it is just as important to guarantee that the ancient liturgy not be seen as an element of disturbance or a threat to the unity of the Church, but rather as a gift in service to the building up of the body of Christ. The precious inheritance of the traditional liturgical patrimony must therefore not be anchored to the past, but made accessible also to the present and the future. Otherwise, the continuity of the Church through various eras and generations is endangered. This obviously does not exclude that in the future, there may arise a convergence in a single common form. However, this will be the result of a process of growth within the Church, not a bureaucratic or formal imposition from above. The current prospect is that this period should be one of mutual enrichment of the two forms, Ordinary and Extraordinary.
As has been stated authoritatively several times, this is not a matter of contrast between Summorum Pontificum and the reforms of the Council, but rather of promoting and preserving its identity, so that those same reforms of the Council may be carried out, understood and made fruitful in line with the Church’s tradition. The image which even today is put forth on many sides, of an alternative between a pre- and post-conciliar world, is totally false, and should therefore be rejected. According to this idea, before the liturgical reform the priest was responsible for the liturgy, whereas starting with Vatican II, it is the responsible of the assembled community. Thus, it is concluded, the community is the true subject of the liturgy, and determines what ought to happen in it. It is certainly true that in the old liturgy, the priest never had the right to decide for himself what ought to happen. It was not arranged by the will of the cleric, but rather, came before him as a sacred rite, the objective form of the Church’s common prayer. The “priest versus community” polemic is senseless. It destroys the authentic understanding of the liturgy and creates a chasm between pre- and post-conciliar which destroys the great bond of the living story of the Faith.
In contrast, the Catechism of the Catholic Church (1069) clearly presents that which is permanently valid and preserved by the great tradition. Liturgy means “service of the people and for the people.” “Service of the people” presupposes the teaching that the people is not created from below, but in virtue of the Paschal ministry of Jesus Christ, and therefore is based on the ministry of another, namely, the Son of God. The People of God does not simply exist as the French, Italian, Spanish etc. exist. It arises continually anew in virtue of the Son of God, incarnate, dead and risen, and from the fact that He raises us up to communion with God, whom we can never reach by ourselves. In the Christian tradition, the term “liturgy” means that the people of God participates in the work of God.
The Catechism cites the Council’s constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium, according to which every liturgical work is a work of Christ, who is the High Priest, and of His body, which is the Church.
This presents the matter in its true profundity. The liturgy presupposes that heaven is open; if heaven is not open, that the liturgy is belittled in its essence, everything is reduced to a matter of roles, the search for the community’s self-confirmation, in which the divine no longer exists. Against what Pope Francis calls the risk for Christians of self-referentiality, the decisive fact which must be emphasized is that the liturgy is either the work of God, or it does not exist. This primacy of God and of His action comes with a universal openness found in every liturgy, which cannot be understood as a matter of phenomenology or the community’s reference to itself, but only by the Christological and theology categories of the people of God and the Body of Christ.
Only in this context can one then understand the mutual relationship between the priest and the community of the faithful. The priest does and says in the liturgy his own part, but he can do and say nothing of his own; he acts in persona Christi. He is not the community’s delegate; rather, in his sacramental representation of Christ as the head of the Church, he expresses the primacy of Christ, which is the most basic condition of every Catholic liturgy. It is precisely because the priest represents this primacy of Christ, that he makes it possible for the entre assembly of the faithful to go beyond itself, heavenward, towards Him who eliminates every earthly barrier.
Benedict XVI, while still a cardinal, wrote that “The Church stands and falls with the Liturgy. When the adoration of the divine Trinity declines, when the faith no longer appears in its fullness in the liturgy of the Church, when man’s words, his thoughts, his intentions are suffocating him, the faith will have lost the place where it is expressed and where it dwells. For that reason, the true celebration of the sacred liturgy is the center of any renewal of the Church whatever.” (Introduction to The Spirit of the Liturgy)
The liturgy of the old rite reminds us, through its silence, its repeated genuflections, its reverence, of the infinite distance that separates heaven from earth; it reminds us that our horizon is not that of earth, but of heaven, that nothing is possible without the sacrifice of Christ, and that the supernatural life is a mystery. This is not, however, a matter of putting the old rite in competition with the reformed missal. It is rather a matter of understanding how the restored freedom to celebrate according to the old liturgical books erects a new barrier to advanced secularism, and a sociological conception which exalts the community, and hides the reality of the whole Christ, head and body. Therefore, we can say that the ancient Roman Rite forms a radical response to the challenge of secularization and “laicism”, to the anti-Christian and sociological humanism of our era. Certainly, it is not the only possible rite, but it faithfully expresses the Catholic Church’s ecclesiology, which is dogmatically one, but can be expressed by different rites or forms of the same rite.
The restoration of the ancient Gregorian liturgy is not therefore a step back, but looks to the future of the Church, which can never build itself by destroying or hiding the spiritual, liturgical and doctrinal richness of its past. Likewise, it can never close itself off from renewal and development, which must always be coherent with tradition. To celebrate the old rite means to look with hope to the future of the Church, at the center of which stands the cross of Christ, as it stands, (and should stand) at the center of the altar. Christ is the High priest to whom the Church turns its face, today, yesterday, and forever.
Oremus pro Pontifice nostro Francisco: Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius.
Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui facis mirabilia magna solus: praetende super famulos tuos, et super congregationes illis commissas, spiritum gratiae salutaris; et, ut in veritate tibi complaceant, perpetuum eis rorem tuae benedictionis infunde.
Kevin Jones is the local representative for the Latin Mass Society in Wrexham Diocese. Any views expressed neither represent those of the Latin Mass Society or the Diocese of Wrexham.