sábado, 17 de janeiro de 2015

Interview with Cardinal Castrillón on the Motu Proprio

Interview with Cardinal Castrillón on the Motu Proprio

Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos has granted an interview to L'Osservatore Romano. (Since the articles there stay only up for a day, see also here on the Papa Ratzinger blog).

I have now translated the entire piece by Gianluca Biccini. I have highlighted some especially interesting, important and/or beautiful passages.
In the Liturgy the Sense of Catholicity and Unity

"Benedict XVI's apostolic letter Summorum Pontificum on the use of the Roman liturgy prior to the reform carried out in 1970 is making return to full communion with Rome also some non-Catholics. Requests in this sense are arriving after the pope has renewed the possibilty to celebrate according to the old rite." This says cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, who in this interview with our newspaper, after the publication of the papal document on Acta Apostolicae Sedis, clarifies its contents and highlights its importance as a means to conserve the treasure of the liturgy that dates back to St. Gregory the Great and for a renewed dialogue with those who, because of liturgical reform, have distanced thmeselves from the Church of Rome. The publication on the Acta preceded by a few days the appointments by Benedict XVI of Monsignor Camille Perl, the previous secretary, as vice president of Ecclesia Dei, and of Monsignor Mario Marini, the previous adjunct secretary, as secretary.

The letter, in the form of motu proprio, does not refer to the present normal form - the ordinary form – of the Eucharistic liturgy, which is that of the Roman missal published by Paul VI and then reissued on two occasions by John Paul II, but refers to the use of the extraordinary form, which is that of the missale Romanum prior to the Council, published in 1962 with the authority of John XXIII. This is not a case of two different rites, but of a twofold use of the one Roman rite. It is the form of celebration – explains the Colombian cardinal - "that has been used for more than 1400 years. This rite, which we could call Gregorian, has inspired the Masses of Palestrina, Mozart, Bach and Beethoven, great cathedrals and wonderful works of painting and sculpture."

"Thanks to the motu proprio not a few have requested the return to full communion and some have already returned - the president of Ecclesia Dei adds -. In Spain, the "Oasis of Jesus the Priest", an entire cloistered monastery with thirty sisters led by their founder, has already been recognized and regularized by the Pontifical Commission; then there are cases of American, German and French groups on their way of regularization. Lastly there are single priests and lay people who contact us, write to us and call us for a reconciliation, and on the other hand there are so many other faithful who express their gratitude to the pope and their gladness for the motu proprio."

Osservatore Romano: Some have accused the Pope of wanting to impose a liturgical model in which the language and gestures of the rite appear as the exclusive monopoly of the priest, while the faithful would be extraneous and therefore excluded from a direct relationship with God.

Cardinal Castrillón: On the occasion of the Baptism of the Lord, for example, Benedict XVI actually celebrated in the Sistine Chapel with the face towards the crucifix. The Pope celebrated in Italian according to the ordinary form, which does not exclude, however, the possibility of celebrating towards the altar and not versus populum, and which also foresees celebration in Latin. Let us remember that the ordinary form is the Mass that normally all the priests say, according to the post-conciliar reform; while the extraordinary form is the Mass prior to the liturgical reform, which according to the motu proprio today everyone can celebrate, and which has never been prohibited .

OR: Yet some criticisms seem to come even from bishops?

C: One or two have difficulties, but those are a few exceptions, because most agree with the Pope. Rather, we find expressed some practical difficulties. We need to be clear: this is not a return to the past but a step forward, because this way you have two treasures, rather than only one. This treasure, therefore, is being offered, respecting the rights of those who are particularly attached to the old liturgy. There then may follow some problems to be solved with common sense. For instance, it can happen that a priest does not have the appropriate preparation and cultural sensitivity. Only think of priests that come from areas where the language is very different from Latin. But this does still not mean a rejection: it is the presentation of a real difficulty, which is to be surmounted.

Our own Pontifical Commission is thinking about organizing a form of aid to seminaries, to dioceses and to bishops' conferences. Another possibility being studied is to promote multimedia resources for coming to know and learning the extraordinary form with all the theological, spiritual, and artistic richness also linked to the ancient liturgy. Furthermore it seems important also to involve groups of priests who already use the extraordinary form, who will offer thmeselves both to celebrate and to demonstrate and teach the celebration according to the missal of 1962.

OR: So the problem does not exist?

C: It is rather a dispute which has arisen from acertain lack of knowledge. Some ask permission for example, as if it were a concession or an exceptional case, but there is no need: the Pope has been clear. It is a mistake of some people and some journalists to believe that the use of the Latin language pertains only to the ancient rite, whereas, to the contrary, it is also foreseen in the missal of Paul VI.

Through the motu proprio "Summorum Pontificum" the Pope offers to all priests the possibility to celebrate Mass in the traditional form, and to the faithful to exercise the right to have this rite when the conditions specified in the motu proprio are met.

OR: How have groups such as the Fraternity of St. Pius X reacted, which refuses to celebrate the novus ordo Mass established after the Second Vatican Council?

C: The Lefebvrians from the outset have maintained that the old form had never been abolished. It is clear that it has never been abrogated, although before the motu proprio many have deemed it forbidden. But now, it may be offered to all the faithful who wish it, depending on the possibilities. But it is also clear that if there is not a priest adequately prepared, it can not be offered because it is not only about the Latin language, but also about knowing the old use as such. We must comprehend some differences: the larger room for silence for the faithful, that fosters contemplation of the mystery and personal prayer. Finding again spaces of silence is today for our culture not only a religious necessity. I remember having participated as a bishop in a high-level business management course, where there was talk of the need for the manager to have available a half-dark room where to sit down to think before deciding.

Silence and contemplation are necessary attitudes also today, above all regarding the mystery of God.

OR: Eight months have passed since the promulgation of the document. It is true that it has attracted a lot of supporters also in other ecclesial realities?

C: The pope offers to the Church a treasure which is spiritual, cultural, religious and catholic. We have received letters of agreement also from prelates of the orthodox churches, from anglican and protestant faihtful. Lastly there are some priests of the Fraternity of Saint Pius X who, singly, are seeking to regularize their position. Some of them have already signed the formula of adhesion. We are informed that there are traditionalist lay faithful, close to the Fraternity, who have begun to frequent Masses in the older rite offered in the churches of the dioceses."

OR: How is a return to "full communion" possible for people who are excommunicated?

C: The excommunication concerns only the four bishops, because they have been ordained without the mandate of the Pope and against his will, while the priests are only suspended. The Mass they celebrate is without a doubt valid, but not licit and, therefore, participation is not recommended, unless on a Sunday there should be no other possibilities. Certainly neither the priests, nor the faithful are excommunicated. Let me reiterate in this regard the importance of a clear understanding of things to be able to judge correctly.

OR: Do you not fear that the attempt to bring back inside the Church men and women who do not recognize the II Vatican Council could provoke an alienation in those faithful who see in Vatican II a compass for navigating the barque of Peter, especially in these times of constant changes?

C: First of all, the problem regarding the Council is not, in my opinion, as grave as it might seem. In fact, the bishops of the Fraternity of St. Pius X, headed by Monsignor Bernard Fellay, have expressly recognized Vatican II as an Ecumenical Council and Monsignor Fellay has reiterated this in a meeting with Pope John Paul II, and more explicitly in the audience of 29 August 2005 with Benedict XVI. Nor can it be forgotten that Monsignor Marcel Lefebvre has signed all the documents of the Council.

I think their criticism of the council concerns rather the clarity of certain texts, in the absence of which the way is opened for interpretations which are not in accordance with the traditional doctrine. The biggest difficulties are interpretative in nature or have to do with some gestures in the ecumenical field, but not with the teaching of Vatican II. These are theological discussions, which may take place inside the Church, where in fact there are different discussions regarding the interpretation of the texts of the Council, discussions which can continue also with the groups returning to full communion.

OR: So the Church extends her hands to them, also through this new motu proprio on the ancient liturgy?

C: Yes, certainly, because it is precisely in the liturgy that the whole sense of Catholicity is expressed and it [the liturgy] is a source of unity. I really like the novus ordo which I celebrate daily. I had not celebrated anymore according to the missal of 1962, after the post-conciliar liturgical reform. Today in resuming sometimes the extraordinary rite, I myself have rediscovered the richness of the old liturgy that the Pope wants to keep alive, preserving that age-old form of Roman tradition.

We must never forget that the ultimate point of reference in the liturgy, as in life, is always Christ. We have therefore no fear, also in the liturgical rite, to turn towards Him, toward the crucifix, together with the faithful, to celebrate the holy sacrifice, in an unbloody manner, as the Council of Trent has defined the Mass.

fonte:new liturgical movement
His Eminence with Ordinati
His Eminence and Fr. Jared McCambridge, FSSP
His Eminence and Fr. Dennis Gordon, FSSP
His Eminence and Fr. Justin Nolan, FSSP
His Eminence and Fr. Jonathan Romanoski, FSSP
In Lincoln, Nebraska at the Cathederal of the Risen Christ, His Eminence, Dario Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos ordained four new Priest for the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter. The following day, His Grace, Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith ordained 8 Deacons for the Fraternity in Germany.
Laudetur Jesus Christus
fonte:una voce carmel

quinta-feira, 8 de janeiro de 2015

Cardinale Darìo Castrillòn Hoyòs ha celebrato 5 Anni fa Pontificale dell'Epifania a Campocavallo

Il Pontificale dell'Epifania a Campocavallo

 5 anni fa la frazione osimana di Campocavallo ha vissuto un pomeriggio storico.
Per la prima volta un Cardinale ha fatto visita allo splendido Santuario sorto dopo il miracolo che la Madonna volle riservare a quelle umili popolazioni nel 1892.
Il cerimoniale, curato dai Francescani dell’Immacolata e dai ministranti locali, è stato solenne : il Cardinale Darìo Castrillòn Hoyòs ha fatto l'ingresso nel Santuario in "cappa magna" mentre la Schola Cantorum di Corridonia ha intonato l'Ecce Sacerdos Magnus.
Dopo il canto dell'ora di terza, in gregoriano, è snodata la processione introitale mentre il maestro Simone Baiocchi, organista e cantore gregorianista, ha proclamato l'antifona d'ingresso dell'Epifania.
E' stata poi eseguita la Missa Secunda Pontificalis di Lorenzo Perosi che ha destato molta ammirazione fra i numerosissimi fedeli che hanno affollato anche lateralmente il Santuario.
Presenti i ministranti che abitualmente a Campocavallo servono la Messa domenicale e festiva.
Nell'omelia il Cardinale ha sottolineato la bellezza santificante della liturgia antica, che Papa Benedetto XVI ha restituito pienamente con il Motu Proprio "Summorum Pontificum" ed ha elogiato i Frati Francescani dell'Immacolata che in Italia ed all'estero si rendono promotori di questa forma liturgica citando più volte gli scritti del Venerabile Giovanni Paolo II, la cui opera a favore dell’antica liturgia è stata portata a termine dal suo successore.
“ La Messa gregoriana – ha detto il Cardinale Castrillon Hoyos – è adorazione a Dio ed è la contemplazione della sua gloria”.
Ha anche ringraziato il Coro per la bella musica che ha elevato alla gloria di Dio eseguendo la stupenda messa di Perosi.
Con accenti accorati il Cardinale ha esortato i fedeli a mantenere viva la fiamma della fede anche avvalendosi delle antiche tradizioni dei nostri padri : come quella di fare il presepio in casa.
Un particolare appello è stato rivolto a favore del mantenimento del Crocifisso nei locali pubblici come segno di identità del nostro popolo.
Brillavano gli stupendi paramenti prestati dalla Basilica Concattedrale di Osimo : la sagrestia della prima chiesa di Osimo vanta un patrimonio quasi unico di arredi sacri.
Diversi i Sacerdoti e i Religiosi convenuti per l’occasione e, come si diceva prima, anche gruppi di fedeli provenienti soprattutto dall’Emilia Romagna.
Il Cardinale, terminato il Pontificale, ha visitato il Museo del Covo e il Presepio che ogni anno viene rinnovato.

Grazie ad A.C per le foto e per la cronaca

sábado, 3 de janeiro de 2015

Cardeal Darío Castrillón destacou que Bento XVI oferece com este documento "a todos os sacerdotes a possibilidade de celebrar a Missa também na forma tradicional e aos fiéis permite exercita

Cardeal Darío Castrillón destacou que Bento XVI oferece com este documento "a todos os sacerdotes a possibilidade de celebrar a Missa também na forma tradicional e aos fiéis permite exercitar o direito de ter este rito quando existirem as condições especificadas no motu proprio".

Motu Proprio sobre Missa Tridentina não é volta ao passado, precisa Cardeal Castrillón
01.04.2008 - ROMA - Em uma entrevista concedida ao jornal oficioso do Vaticano, L'Osservatore Romano ), o Cardeal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, Presidente da Pontifícia Comissão Ecclesia Dei explicou que o Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum do Papa Bento XVI que liberaliza a Missa em latim não é uma volta ao passado e gerou além disso o retorno à plena comunhão de muitos irmãos separados.

Na entrevista realizada por Gianluca Biccini, o Cardeal explicou que "a carta apostólica de Bento XVI Summorum Pontificum sobre o uso da liturgia romana anterior à reforma efetuada em 1970 está fazendo voltar inclusive alguns não católicos à plena comunhão com Roma. Solicitam-no dessa forma logo que o Papa renovasse a possibilidade de celebrar segundo o antigo rito".

O Cardeal Castrillón pôs como exemplo o seguinte caso: "na Espanha, o Oásis de Jesus Sacerdote, um inteiro monastério de clausura com 30 irmãs guiadas por seu fundador, já foi reconhecido e regularizado pela Pontifícia Comissão".

"De outro lado existem grupos de americanos, alemães e franceses e alguns leigos que nos contactam, escrevem-nos e chamam para procurar uma reconciliação e de outra parte há muitos outros fiéis que manifestam sua gratidão ao Papa pela promulgação do motu proprio", prosseguiu.

Para o Presidente da Pontifícia Comissão Ecclesia Dei "é necessário deixar algo em claro: não se trata de um retorno ao passado mas sim de um progresso, porque se têm agora duas riquezas, em vez de uma só. E desta forma se oferece esta riqueza, respeitando o direito de quem está particularmente ligado à antiga liturgia".

Embora admitiu que podem surgir alguns problemas práticos no momento da aplicação do motu proprio, o Cardeal indicou que a Pontifícia Comissão que preside "está pensando em organizar uma forma de ajuda aos seminários, dioceses e conferências episcopais. Outra perspectiva em estudo é a de promover subsídios multimídia para o conhecimento e a aprendizagem da forma extraordinária com toda a riqueza teológica, espiritual e artística ligada também à antiga liturgia".

"Além disso parece importante que existam sacerdotes que já usam a forma extraordinária e que se ofereçam para celebrar ou para ilustrar a celebração segundo o missal de 1962", explicou.

Depois de precisar que com este motu proprio "o Papa foi claro" e que "é um engano de algumas pessoas e de alguns jornalistas, afirmar que o uso da língua latina só lhe pertence ao antigo rito, já que se estiver previsto no missal de Paulo VI", o Cardeal colombiano destacou que Bento XVI oferece com este documento "a todos os sacerdotes a possibilidade de celebrar a Missa também na forma tradicional e aos fiéis permite exercitar o direito de ter este rito quando existirem as condições especificadas no motu proprio".

"O Papa oferece à Igreja uma riqueza que é espiritual, cultural, religiosa e católica. recebemos cartas de consenso também de prelados das Igrejas ortodoxas, dos anglicanos e protestantes. Também há alguns sacerdotes da Fraternidade São Pio X que, individualmente, estão procurando regularizar sua posição. Alguns deles já assinaram a fórmula de adesão. Sabemos também que existem leigos tradicionalistas, próximos à Fraternidade, que começaram a frequentar as missas no rito antigo oferecidas nas Igrejas das dioceses", continuou o Cardeal.

Ao perguntar-se o como é possível um retorno à "plena comunhão" para pessoas excomungadas?", o Cardeal respondeu que "a excomunhão só recaiu sobre os quatro bispos" ordenados pelo bispo cismático francês Marcel Lefebvre, entre os que se encontra o actual líder da Fraternidade São Pio X, Dom Bernard Fellay, "porque foram ordenados sem o mandato do Papa e contra sua vontade, enquanto que os sacerdotes estão somente suspensos".

Precisando um dado mais sobre estes sacerdotes suspensos, o Cardeal acrescentou que "a Missa que celebram é sem dúvida válida, mas não lícita e; por essa razão, não se aconselha a participação nela, a menos que no domingo não exista outra possibilidade. Certamente nem os sacerdotes nem os fiéis estão excomungados. Queria a propósito deles esclarecer importância das coisas para poder as julgar correctamente".

De outro lado o Cardeal Castrillón comentou também algumas coisas de sua experiência pessoal com a liturgia. "Eu gosto muito do novus ordo que celebro quotidianamente. Não celebrei mais segundo o missal de 1962, logo depois da reforma litúrgica. Hoje ao retomar algumas vezes o rito extraordinário, também eu redescobri a riqueza da antiga liturgia que o Papa quer manter viva, conservando aquela forma secular da tradição romana".

"Não devemos esquecer nunca que o ponto supremo de referência na liturgia, como na vida, é sempre Cristo. Não temos então medo, também no rito litúrgico, de nos voltar para Ele, para o crucificado, juntos aos fiéis, para celebrar o santo sacrifício, em modo incruento, como o Concílio de Trento definiu a Missa", concluiu.

Fonte: ACI

sábado, 22 de novembro de 2014

Su Eminencia el Cardenal Castrillón Hoyos, Presidente Emérito de la Pontificia Comisión Ecclesia Dei, celebró Santa Misa prelaticia con la Forma Extraordinaria del Rito Romano, en la Capilla del Santísimo Sacramento de la Basílica de San Pedro, con motivo de la 20º Asamblea Internacional de la Federación Una Voce.

Misa tradicional en la Basílica de San Pedro

El pasado 5 de noviembre de 2011 Su Eminencia el Cardenal Castrillón Hoyos, Presidente Emérito de la Pontificia Comisión Ecclesia Dei, celebró Santa Misa prelaticia con la Forma Extraordinaria del Rito Romano, en la Capilla del Santísimo Sacramento de la Basílica de San Pedro, con motivo de la 20º Asamblea Internacional de la Federación Una Voce.

En su homilía, el cardenal destacó que “la práctica generalizada de abusos litúrgicos después del Concilio ha producido heridas profundas en la Iglesia, socavando la primacía del espíritu de obediencia al Magisterio de la Iglesia, que invariablemente debe caracterizar la expresión de la fe” y citando al Santo Padre Benedicto XVI (Exhortación Apostólica Sacramentum Caritatis), recordó que la obediencia fiel a las normas litúrgicas en su plenitud es la que asegura desde hace dos mil años la vida de fe de todos los creyentes.

Sobre el famoso "espíritu del concilio" el cardenal afirmó que "constituye para algunos una herramienta para sostener falsas afirmaciones a menudo dirigidas a imponer formas inquietantes de pensar y actuar... responsables de peligrosas desviaciones teológicas y pastorales, que son un daño concreto a la vida de fe del pueblo de Dios”.

domingo, 16 de novembro de 2014

Cardeal Darío Castrillon: eu próprio tenho redescoberto a riqueza da velha liturgia que o Papa quer manter viva, preservando o antiga forma de tradição Romana.

Cardeal Dario Castrillon: O Santo Padre quer conservar os imensos tesouros espirituais, culturais e estéticos ligados à liturgia antiga. A recuperação desta riqueza se une à não menos preciosa da liturgia actual da Igreja. Por estas razões o Santo Padre tem a intenção de estender a toda a Igreja latina a possibilidade de celebrar a Santa Missa e os Sacramentos segundo os livros litúrgicos promulgados pelo Beato João XXIII em 1962.

cardeal Castrillon

Estou muito contente por ver este programa que foi criado para instruir os sacerdotes, e não só os sacerdotes, mas também os fiéis, que por tanto tempo conheciam somente o novo rito; para que se familiarizem com essa forma do Rito Romano.

Este vídeo foi criado para preparar os sacerdotes para que possam celebrar num modo digno, Santo, com piedade e com amor num modo de acordo com seus requerimentos particulares.
Portanto esta iniciativa é bem vinda e eu, como Presidente da Pontifícia Comissão Ecclesia Dei em Roma, com os cardeais que são membros, os assessores e o pessoal cujo trabalho é dedicado a esse programa. Obrigado Madre Angélica e a todos os que ajudaram este projecto pelos esforços que estão fazendo para assistir aos sacerdotes a oferecer mais dignamente para todos na Igreja Católica este tesouro do Rito anterior. Obrigado.

Cardeal Dario Castrillon preside no trono ao solene Pontifical da Missa Tridentina

Intervenção do Cardeal Dario Castrillon a 17 Maio de 2007 na V Conferência Geral do Episcopado Latino-Americano 

Queridos e venerados irmãos:

Permito-me apresentar um breve relatório sobre a Pontifícia Comissão Ecclesia Dei e sobre o estado da realidade pastoral que o Santo Padre colocou sob sua competência.Esta Comissão foi instituída pelo Servo de Deus João Paulo II em 1988, quando um grupo notável de sacerdotes, religiosos e fiéis que tinham manifestado sua desconformidade com a reforma litúrgica conciliar ... . O Santo Padre, mediante o Motu Proprio Ecclesia Dei Adflicta, confiou a esta Comissão o cuidado pastoral destes fiéis tradicionalistas. Por vontade do Santo Padre, este Dicastério estende, além disso, seu serviço a satisfazer as justas aspirações de quantos por uma sensibilidade particular, sem ter tido vínculos com os dois grupos citados, desejam manter viva a liturgia latina anterior na celebração da Eucaristia e dos outros sacramentos.

Cardeal Dario Castrillon

O Santo Padre, que foi durante alguns anos membro desta Comissão, quer que ela se converta em um organismo da Santa Sé com a finalidade própria e distinta de conservar e manter o valor da liturgia latina tradicional. Mas se deve afirmar com toda claridade que não se trata de um voltar para atrás, de uma volta aos tempos anteriores à reforma de 1970. Trata-se pelo contrário de uma oferta generosa do Vigário de Cristo que, como expressão de sua vontade pastoral, quer pôr a disposição da Igreja todos os tesouros da liturgia latina que durante séculos nutriu a vida espiritual de tantas gerações de fiéis católicos. O Santo Padre quer conservar os imensos tesouros espirituais, culturais e estéticos ligados à liturgia antiga. A recuperação desta riqueza se une à não menos preciosa da liturgia actual da Igreja.Por estas razões o Santo Padre tem a intenção de estender a toda a Igreja latina a possibilidade de celebrar a Santa Missa e os Sacramentos segundo os livros litúrgicos promulgados pelo Beato João XXIII em 1962.

Tem sido incansável o Cardeal Dario Castrillon em dar conferências, entrevistas e sobretudo celebrações da Santa Missa Tridentina dando assim a conhecer a beleza e a riqueza da missa Tridentina como deseja o Santo Padre Bento XVI

Cardeal Dario Castrillon

Na América Latina, como sabemos muito bem, devemos agradecer ao Senhor pela volta de toda uma Diocese, a de Campos, antes lefevriana que agora, depois de cinco anos, apresenta frutos bons. Foi uma volta pacífica e os fiéis que se inscreveram na Administração Apostólica, estão contentes de poder viver em paz em suas comunidades paroquiais; mais ainda, em efeito algumas dioceses brasileiras fizeram contactos com a Administração Apostólica de Campos que colocou ao seu dispor sacerdotes para a atenção pastoral dos fiéis tradicionalistas em suas igrejas locais. O projecto do Santo Padre foi já parcialmente provado em Campos onde a coabitação pacífica das duas formas do único rito romano na Igreja é uma bela realidade. Temos a esperança de que tal modelo produza bons frutos, também em outros lugares da Igreja onde vivem juntos fiéis católicos com sensibilidades litúrgicas diversas. E esperamos, além disso, que tal modo de viver juntos atraia também àqueles tradicionalistas que ainda estão longe.Os membros actuais da Comissão são os Senhores. Cardeais Julián Herranz, Jean-Pierre Ricard, William Joseph Levada, Antonio Cañizares, e Franc Rodé. São consultores os Subsecretários de alguns Dicastérios.Até agora estiveram sob a Ecclesia Dei várias comunidades dispersas pelo mundo. 300 sacerdotes, 79 religiosos, 300 religiosas, 200 seminaristas e várias centenas de milhares de fiéis. Curiosamente aumenta o interesse dos jovens na França, Estados Unidos, Brasil, Itália, Escandinávia, Austrália e China. No momento do retorno, de Campos voltaram 50 sacerdotes, uns cinquenta seminaristas, 100 religiosas e 25.000 fiéis. Peçamos ao Senhor que este projeto do Santo Padre possa realizar-se logo para a unidade da Igreja.

 Cardeal Dario Castrillon

Por esta liturgia, que nunca foi abolida, e que , como dissemos, é considerada um tesouro, existe hoje um novo e renovado interesse e, também por esta razão o Santo Padre pensa que chegou o tempo de facilitar, como o quis a primeira Comissão Cardinalícia em 1986, o acesso a esta liturgia fazendo dela uma forma extraordinária do único rito Romano.Há algumas boas experiências de comunidades de vida religiosa ou apostólica erigidas pela Santa Sé recentemente que celebram em paz e serenidade esta liturgia. Em torno delas se congregam assembleias de fiéis que frequentam estas celebrações com alegria e gratidão. As criações mais recentes som o Instituto de São Felipe Neri em Berlim, que funciona como um Oratório e se fez presente também, com boa acolhida, na Diocese do Tréveris; o Instituto do Bom Pastor de Burdeos que reúne sacerdotes, seminaristas e fiéis, alguns saídos da Fraternidade São Pio X. Estão muito adiantados os trâmites para o reconhecimento de uma comunidade contemplativa, o Oásis de Jesus Sacerdote, de Barcelona

Cardeal Castrillon Hoyos: "Missa de sempre para todas as paróquias" 

No último domingo (15 de junho de 2008), em Londres, na catedral de Westminster, Sé Primaz da Inglaterra, o presidente da Comissão Ecclesia Dei, Cardeal Dario 
Castrillon Hoyos, fez importantes declarações acerca do futuro das paróquias católicas e a implementação do motu proprio Summorum Pontificum .

Reuters: Em algumas partes do mundo parece existir resistência por parte dos bispos locais em permitir aos fiéis plena liberdade para celebrar a forma extraordinária. O que você recomenda a esses fiéis fazerem?

Castrillon: A estarem informados. Muitas das dificuldades surgem porque eles não conhecem a realidade do Rito Gregoriano – esse é o nome correcto da forma extraordinária, pois essa missa nunca foi proibida, nunca. Hoje para muitos bispos é difícil porque eles não têm padres que saibam latim. Muitos seminaristas dedicam muito poucas horas ao latim – insuficientes para dar a necessária preparação para celebrar de boa maneira a Forma Extraordinária. Outros pensam que o Papa está indo contra o Concílio Vaticano II. Isso é ignorância absoluta. Os padres do Concílio nunca celebraram a Missa de outra maneira que não a gregoriana. Ele [o novus ordo] veio depois do Concílio… O Santo Padre, que é um teólogo e que estava na preparação do Concílio, está actuando exactamente conforme o Concílio, dando liberdade aos diferentes tipos de celebração. Essa celebração, a Gregoriana, foi a celebração da Igreja durante mais de mil anos… Outros dizem que não podem celebrar com as costas para o povo. Isso é ridículo. O Filho de Deus sacrificou-se ao Pai com seu rosto voltado ao Pai. Não é contra o povo. É pelo povo…

Damian Thompson (Telegraph): Eminência, o Santo Padre gostaria de ver as paróquias comuns da Inglaterra sem conhecimento do Rito Gregoriano apresentadas a ele?

Cardeal Castrillon: Sim, é claro. Nós não podemos celebrá-lo sem o conhecimento da língua, dos sinais, das jeitos do rito, e algumas instituições da Igreja estão ajudando nesse sentido.

DT: Então o Papa gostaria de ver muitas paróquias fornecendo o Rito Gregoriano?

Cardeal Castrillon: Não muitas – todas as paróquias, pois isso é um dom de Deus. Ele oferece essas riquezas e é muito importante para as novas gerações conhecer o passado da Igreja. Esse tipo de liturgia é tão nobre, tão bonito – a mais teológica das formas de expressar nossa fé. A liturgia, a música, a arquitectura, as pinturas, fazem um todo que é um tesouro. O Santo Padre está desejoso de oferecer a todas as pessoas essa possibilidade, não apenas para poucos grupos que pedem, mas para que todos conheçam essa forma de se celebrar a eucaristia na Igreja Católica.

Anna Arco (The Catholic Herald): Nesse sentido, gostaria de ver todos os seminários da Inglaterra e Gales ensinando os seminaristas a celebrar na forma extraordinária?

Cardeal Castrillon: Eu gostaria e será necessário. Nós estamos escrevendo aos seminários, estamos de acordo que devemos fazer uma grande preparação não apenas para o Rito, mas para ensinar a teologia, a filosofia, a língua latina….

DT: Quais seriam os passos práticos para as paróquias ordinárias [para se preparar para o Rito Gregoriano]?

Cardeal Castrillon: Se o pároco reserva uma hora aos domingos para celebrar a Missa e preparar com catequese a comunidade para compreendê-lo, apreciar o poder do silêncio, o poder da sagrada forma de frente para Deus, a profunda teologia, para descobrir como e por que o padre representa Cristo e rezar com o padre.

EC: Eminência, eu penso que muitos católicos estão mais que confusos por essa nova ênfase no Rito Tridentino, principalmente porque nós fomos ensinados que o Novo Rito representava um progresso verdadeiro, e muitos de nós que crescemos com ele o vemos como um progresso verdadeiro, que existam ministros da Eucaristia, mulheres no santuário, que somos todos sacerdotes, profetas e reis. Essa nova ênfase para muitos de nós parece negar isso.

Cardeal Castrillon: Que progresso? “ Progredir” significa oferecer o melhor para Deus… Eu estou surpreendido porque muitas pessoas jovens são entusiastas da celebração do Rito Gregoriano …

EC: No Motu Proprio, a ênfase do Papa é em um Rito e duas formas, e ele descreve o Rito Tridentino como “extraordinário”. Extraordinário portanto significa excepcional, algo que não celebramos todo domingo.

Cardeal Castrillon: Não “excepcional”. Extraordinário significa “não ordinário”, e não “excepcional”.

DT: Existirá um esclarecimento sobre o Motu Proprio?

Cardeal Castrillon: Não exatamente um esclarecimento do Motu Proprio, mas de matérias tratadas no Motu Proprio, tais como o calendário, ordenações ao sub-diaconato, o forma de usar os paramentos, o jejum eucarístico.

DT: E quanto ao “grupo estável”?

Cardeal Castrillon: Isso é uma matéria de senso comum… Em todo palácio episcopal existem talvez três ou quatro pessoas. Isso é um grupo estável…. Não é possível dar a duas pessoas uma missa, mas duas aqui, duas ali, duas acolá – eles podem tê-la. Eles são um grupo estável.

DT: De paróquias diferentes?

Cardeal Castrillon: Sem problema! Esse é o nosso mundo. Gerentes de empresas não vivem no mesmo lugar, mas eles são um grupo estável.

Alguns extractos de uma entrevista feita ao Cardeal Darío Castrillón pela Radio Vaticana

Cardeal Darío Castrillón Hoyos:- "Já João Paulo II queria dar aos fiéis que amavam o antigo rito a oportunidade de celebrar o rito que mais atendia à sensibilidade deles. O Santo Padre Bento XVI tem um amor especial pela Liturgia. Um amor que se traduz também em capacidade de estudo, de aprofundamento da própria Liturgia. Por esse motivo, Bento XVI considera a liturgia anterior à Reforma do Concílio um tesouro inestimável. O papa não quer voltar atrás. É importante saber e ressaltar que o Concílio não proibiu a liturgia de São Pio V e, ademais, é preciso dizer que os Padres do Concílio celebraram a Missa de São Pio V. Não é um voltar atrás, como alguns defendem _ porque não conhecem a realidade. Pelo contrário: o Concílio quis ser amplo nas liberdades boas dos fiéis. Uma dessas liberdades é justamente a de tomar esse tesouro, como diz o papa que é a Liturgia para mantê-lo vivo."

-Cardeal Hoyos, o que muda, na realidade, com esse Motu Proprio?

-Cardeal Darío Castrillón Hoyos:-"Com esse Motu Proprio, na realidade, a mudança não é tão grande. A coisa principal é que neste momento os sacerdotes podem decidir, sem permissão nem por parte da Santa Sé nem por parte do bispo, se celebrar a Missa no rito antigo. E isso vale para todos os sacerdotes. Os párocos são eles mesmos que na paróquia devem abrir a porta àqueles sacerdotes que, tendo a faculdade, vão celebrá-la. Portanto, não é necessário pedir nenhuma outra permissão."

Cardeal Darío Castrillon: eu próprio tenho redescoberto a riqueza da velha liturgia que o Papa quer manter viva, preservando o antiga forma de tradição Romana.

Entrevista Cardeal Darío

OR: Então, a Igreja estende as mãos para eles, também através deste novo Motu proprio sobre a antiga liturgia? 

C: Sim, sem dúvida, porque é justamente na liturgia que todo o sentido da catolicidade é expresso e ela [a liturgia] é uma fonte de unidade. Eu realmente gosto do Novus Ordo que eu celebro diariamente. Eu não tinha mais celebrado de acordo com o missal de 1962, após a reforma litúrgica pós-conciliar. 

Hoje ao resumir, por vezes, o rito extraordinário, eu próprio tenho redescoberto a riqueza da velha liturgia que o Papa quer manter viva, preservando o antiga forma de tradição Romana. Nunca devemos esquecer que o último ponto de referência na liturgia, como na vida, é sempre Cristo. Temos, portanto, sem medo, também no rito litúrgico, voltar-nos para Ele, em direcção ao crucifixo, juntamente com os fiéis, para celebrar o santo sacrifício, de um modo incruento, como o Concílio de Trento, definiu a Missa.


domingo, 13 de julho de 2014

The Beauty and Spirituality of the Traditional Latin Mass. Holy Mass: Heaven Is a Place on Earth

The Beauty and Spirituality

The Beauty and Spirituality
of the Traditional Latin Mass

by David Joyce

(The Holy Mass as referred to in this essay is the traditional Latin Mass of the ancient Roman rite, as celebrated until 1965 in the Latin Church)

It is the Mass that Cardinal Newman, the leader of the Oxford movement into the Church, said that he could attend forever, and not be tired. Father Faber, priest of the Brompton Oratory in the last century, described the Mass as the "most beautiful thing this side of heaven", and he continued:

It came forth out of the grand mind of the Church, and lifted us out of earth and out of self, and wrapped us round in a cloud of mystical sweetness and the sublimities of a more than angelic liturgy, and purified us almost without ourselves, and charmed us with the celestial charming, so that our very senses seemed to find vision, hearing, fragrance, taste, and touch beyond what earth can give.

Father Adrian Fortescue, a great English liturgical historian, has said that the Mass of the Roman rite is the most venerable rite in Christendom.

Pious Popes, too, have often wondered at the majesty of the Mass. Pope Clement VII said in 1604:

Since the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist by means of which Christ Our Lord has made us partakers of His sacred Body, and ordained to stay with us unto the consummation of the world, is the greatest of all the Sacraments, and it is accomplished in the Holy Mass and offered to God the Father for the sins of the people, it is highly fitting that we who are in one body which is the Church, and who share of the one Body of Christ, would use in this ineffable and awe- inspiring Sacrifice the same manner of celebration and the same ceremonial observance and rite.

and Pope Urban VII in 1634 said:

If there is anything divine among man's possessions which might excite the envy of the citizens of heaven (could they ever be swayed by such a passion), this is undoubtedly the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, by means of which men, having before their eyes, and taking into their hands the very Creator of heaven and earth, experience, while still on earth, a certain anticipation of heaven.

How keenly, then, must mortals strive to preserve and protect this inestimable privilege with all due worship and reverence, and be ever on their guard lest their negligence offend the angels who vie with them in eager adoration!

The Mass! What a treasure! Christ's very own sacrifice on the cross left for us wrapped in an act seeping with beauty and divine celebration. Below I describe a few of its important qualities that set it apart in this day and age, that truly make it "the most beautiful thing this side of heaven".

St. Mary Catholic Church, Kalamazoo, MI

1. The Silence of the Canon

The entire Canon of the Mass is devoid of any vocal sounds, other than one phrase "Nobis quoque peccatoribus" where the priest strikes his breast, emphasising his own sinfulness and unworthiness of celebrating such an unspeakably divine action. The only other sound is when the bell is rung, initially at the "Hanc igitur" as a warning bell to inform the faithful of the impending consecration, and then three times at each consecration: when the priest genuflects before the divine oblation, when he raises the divine victim in an elevation of worship and adoration, and finally when he genuflects again. Otherwise, complete silence.

Why this silence, when the canon is the most important part of the Mass? Simply because of that fact. The canon of the Mass joins the earthy sphere to the heavenly sphere. Christ's sacrifice was performed once and for all; it can never be repeated as it was the eternal and perfect sacrifice to end all sacrifices. However, since the victim and the priest was God, the person of our Lord Jesus Christ, the effects are infinite: the entire human race was redeemed wherever they lived, regardless of time or space. But an important fact is that the act that Christ performed was placed within His creation, and at a particular point in time. Therefore, for the sacrifice of the cross to become effective universally over all time, it needed to be perpetuated through the ages by a priesthood acting in the person of our Lord and presenting His sacrifice anew to a new generation. This is why Christ built His Church: to bring forth the graces of the incarnation, to prolong it and "make present" its effects to all people. The sacrifice of the cross, and the consecration in the Mass, are timeless entities in a temporal world.

The silence, therefore, enables us to transcend our present existence and become present at the foot of the cross itself. Our senses, so active in the outside world, are suppressed so that our soul can touch the divine presence of God on the altar, so that we may be lifted up with the oblation to the altar of God Himself in heaven, surrounded by all the Hosts and angels in constant prayer and adoration. We, in effect, dip our toes into the pool of eternity, no longer limited by our earthly existence in time and space, but instead become one with our Lord in offering ourselves to God the Father in the one perfect act of self-giving, love and adoration.

Our senses are not totally silenced though. Through our eyes, we see the Holy Victim raises up to the Father in the form of bread and wine; closing our eyes we see the cross above us and the angelic party beyond. In our ears, we hear the ringing of bells, confirming what we see and what we feel in our hearts. In our nostrils, we smell the sweet odour of incense, floating up to heaven accompanying the Victim to the altar of God. It is truly an entire experience of Body and Soul where the carpet of life is swept from underneath us revealing the eternal reality of the cross and the truth of God's love for each and everyone of us.

Using vocal words in the canon would defy this divine reality, it would seemingly bring the events down to a level of speech and thought, rather than action and sacrifice. We must feel with our heart and soul the event taking place, not hear with our ears the words which enact the event. Only silence can penetrate this mystery, with our spirit lifting us above that temporal actions of the priest into the divine and eternal reality of the High Priest: our Lord on the Cross.

2. The Orientation of the Priest

Traditionally, the priest has always faced east, standing before the altar leading the people in worship and sacrifice with Christ our Lord to our Father in heaven. The east is where the sun rises, a symbol of the rising of the Son of God, His glorious resurrection and the direction of His eventual second coming. Standing before the altar, the symbol of the offering of the sacrifice is clear to all, elevated slightly above the nave and the rest of the sanctuary, lifting the sacrifice heavenward in an act of worship and atonement.

St. Stanislaus Kostka Catholic Church, Michigan City, IN

Please note that I do not use the terminology "facing the altar" or "facing the people", because this inevitably confuses why the priest is standing before the altar and not behind it. The people who are there are following the priest along the path to eternal life. Holy Mass is not merely a meeting or an act of praise with the presider guiding the people: it is an act of sacrificial worship and a step to eternal life. We join the priest, who acts in "persona Christi", in offering the sacrifice, Christ Himself, to God the Father. The entire proceedings are a spiritual affair: we leave our worldly worries behind at the doorway and enter a place of dimmed lights, hushed tones and reverence towards the divine presence within. The priest leads the people in prayer and worship, we follow as his obedient flock, as a shepherd leads his sheep to green pastures and lush grass. It allows for intense prayer: the priest concentrates on the offering of the sacrifice, the people concentrate on following him and lifting their hearts up to the Father with their Lord on the cross. The interaction between priest and the faithful is minimised so that the interaction between the soul of each person and God is emphasised through the sacred liturgy.

3. The Prayers at the Foot of the Altar

The job of a priest is awesome indeed. Offering any sacrifice to God is a heavy responsibility. When the offering is also God, with God acting through your ordained ministry, the responsibility is beyond human comprehension. Suppose that when walking you turned a corner and met a priest talking to an angel, who would you greet first? The angel would be constantly in the presence of God, sinless and perfect in his praise and worship of God. However, you should greet the priest before the angel, due to the dignity of his vocation: in his capacity, he acts in "persona Christi" bringing forth the graces of God's sacraments, whilst an angel merely carries messages from God, he does not act in His place.

St. Patrick Catholic Church, South Bend, IN

Due to this immense responsibility, in the traditional Latin Mass the priest approaches the altar with extreme care and awareness of his own unworthiness. Once the altar pieces are in place, he positions himself at the level of the surrounding sanctuary (normally two or three steps down from the altar itself) and starts the prayers at the foot of the altar. These include psalm 42, which pleads for God's grace, preparing the priest for his actions on the altar. He then, without moving forwards, bows down low and prays the Confiteor confessing to God - thrice - that through his own fault he has sinned exceedingly in thought, word and deed. The server pleads to God: "May almighty God have mercy on thee and, having forgiven thee thy sins, bring thee to life everlasting" - asking God for his forgiveness for the poor and frail priest! The Confiteor is then repeated, this time for the server and the faithful present, thus signifying a deep divide between priesthood and laity. The priest continues, with the server, in asking for God's help, and finally - after all this - ascends the steps to the altar with the prayer:

Take away from us our iniquities, we beseech Thee, O Lord; that, being made pure in heart we may be worthy to enter into the Holy of Holies. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

These proceedings reflect the theology of the Old Testament priesthood, thus providing us with a continuation and fulfilment of that priesthood in the person of Christ Himself, and the priests He has since ordained.

Once the Mass is over, the priest again bows low and offers up the following prayer:

May the lowly homage of my service be pleasing to Thee, O most holy Trinity: and do Thou grant that the sacrifice which I, all unworthy, have offered up in the sight of Thy majesty, may be acceptable to Thee, and, because of Thy loving-kindness, may avail to atone to Thee for myself and for those for whom I have offered it up. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Thus the priest further emphasises his inadequacy in offering the divine victim, recognising his human frailty before God and all those present. For me, this is a great expression of humility before Almighty God, who in His own infinite humility in the incarnation, instituted the Catholic priesthood in offering up the Eucharist until the end of the age.

4. The Use of Latin

The use of Latin in the Mass is very important. Firstly, it is the language of the Roman Catholic Church. It symbolises a real and true unity across the many countries in which the Mass is celebrated. Wherever you may enter a church in the Latin rite, the whole proceedings will be instantly familiar to you, bringing home an immediate feeling of the universality of the Church. The Catholic Church is truly universal, not fixed to one country or culture, but transcends national boundaries by simply using the same language, symbolising its unity in faith, authority and sources of revelation.

Secondly, Latin is a dead language. It is no longer used as a language in the streets, therefore it has stopped evolving as vernacular languages constantly do. Due to this, the meaning of the words has set in stone, and the liturgy does not need to be revised to avoid offending certain people for whom the words have taken on a different meaning. The dead language has, then, been turned into a "liturgical language" used for the liturgical celebration of the Church. This is not specific to the Latin rite either. The Russian Orthodox Church (although separate from Rome) uses Church Slavonic and the Greek Orthodox Church uses ancient Greek. When the Church was setting up in China, the missionaries there appealed to Rome that the locals truly could not use Latin as a language since it was so foreign to them. Subsequently, the Vatican decreed that the Church there could use ancient Chinese that was no longer in use, thus retaining its liturgical usage.

Thirdly, Latin exhibits a beauty and elegance that seemingly no vernacular tongue can match. Dietrich von Hildebrand, described by Pope Pius XII as a doctor of the 20th century Church, describes this feature as follows:

Latin is in a unique position here. First, Latin grammar has an uncommon clarity, and to know it, is an incomparable training for our thinking. Secondly, Latin has a great beauty, a spiritual nobility of quite a special sort. This is also true of medieval Latin, which moreover produced works of highest poetical art and religious depth. One need only think of the Dies irae, which is ascribed to Thomas of Celano, of Jacapone da Todi's Stabat mater, of the magnificent hymns of St. Thomas Aquinas, of the sequences of Venantius Fortunatus, and many others. The role which Latin has played in history, especially in the liturgy, and the universality which it possesses, gives the learning of Latin quite a special place ("The Devastated Vineyard" by Dietrich von Hildebrand, page 90).

Latin is not a barrier, but an invitation into the treasures of the Church, both in liturgy and music. It cannot be seen as an obstacle to potential converts, or to the laity in general, as the personal piety of the laity, and conversions to the Church and also to the priesthood, were flourishing when the Latin Mass was the jewel in the Church's crown.

5. The Gregorian Chant

As many popular music charts have indicated recently, the Gregorian chant appeals to the soul now as much as ever. Its sublime effect on the proceedings of the Mass is never to be underestimated; it truly seems to be music from heaven. St. Gregory the Great, a Pope in the 6th/7th centuries, organised the Church music and formally defined the Gregorian chant as it has been sung in the Church ever since. St. Pope Pius X further reformed the music of the Church, making a revision "not of the text but of the music. The Vatican Gradual of 1906 contains new, or rather restored, forms of the chants sung by the celebrant, therefore to be printed in the Missal" (according to Adrian Fortescue). Furthermore, the Second Vatican Council stated that the Gregorian chant "should be given pride of place in liturgical services" (Sacrosanctum concilium, 116). Mozart himself said that "he would gladly exchange all his music for the fame of having composed the Gregorian Preface", and Berlioz, who himself wrote a grandiose Requiem, said that "nothing in music could be compared with the effect of the Gregorian Dies Irae" (Latin Mass Society, newsletter no. 111, page 23).

The University of Notre Dame, IN

The Gregorian chant connects with the soul, not the mind of the believer (and non- believer alike). Without any knowledge of the traditional Mass, people are somehow drawn towards the divine mysteries of the Church through the treasure of the Gregorian chant. I personally was at a loss in the first Latin Mass I ever attended - a Low Mass - but subsequently I attended a Sung Mass with the Gregorian chant and to term a present day saying: "I was blown away"! It has a mysterious quality that silences the senses and speaks directly to the spirit within, connects with that ever- present desire - however suppressed - that yearns for the "unmoved mover" Who answers all our questions and aspirations. The chant, an expression of most religions, has seemingly found its perfect setting in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass - not the concert hall or opera house - but praising the merits of our Saviour before the Holy of Holies.

6. The Reception of Communion

The reception of Communion within the rubrics of the traditional Mass takes place within a sublime and prayerful world, separated from the rushed and physical world in which we live. Again, in the traditional Mass the physical actions of the faith are downplayed so that the spiritual aspect of our existence can revel and take precedence.

Firstly, the priest receives Holy Communion at a distinctly separate time apart from the servers and laity. He recites many beautiful prayers whilst consuming the Host and Chalice, before turning his attention to the servers and faithful present. He does, for instance, have a separate "Lord, I am not worthy..." prayer, said three times with the bell ringing. When he turns to the faithful, holding a piece of the Sacred Host towards them, he says "Behold the lamb of God...", and the faithful then recite their own "Lord, I am not worthy...", further emphasising the different roles of priest and laity.

Secondly, when the faithful themselves receive Communion, they receive It kneeling at the altar rail, and directly onto their tongue. This is very significant. Receiving Communion whilst kneeling means that the faithful line up in a row before the sanctuary, and thus have time to prepare themselves for this most sacred of events: coming into spiritual and substantial union with Christ Himself. The communicant kneels down, and whilst he waits for the priest to make his way around, he can settle himself, concentrate on the upcoming Communion with our Lord praying intensely. When it is his turn, the priest says the prayer: "May the body of Our Lord Jesus Christ keep your soul until life everlasting. Amen". This means, besides the beauty and the significance of the words themselves, that the priest says the word "Amen" so that the communicant need not invoke his voice to receive the King of Kings, allowing a constant stream of prayer and thanksgiving to flow from soul to Saviour. The communicant simply needs to expose his tongue, and his side of the proceedings is complete. Upon receiving Christ, he can continue praying for a little while, and only then does he need to return to his seat, leaving room for the next communicant. Moreover, having the priest come over to the communicant signifies that Christ comes to us, feeds us with His own divine life, whilst we wait kneeling and unmoving like little children totally dependent on His love, mercy and compassion. This is the message of the Gospel: to become like little children, submitting our wills to His and depending totally on Him for everything. We cannot even feed ourselves without Christ's help, and the action of Communion in the traditional manner demonstrates this in a very vivid manner.

Finally, receiving Communion directly on the tongue further increases the spiritual tranquility of the whole act. The priest, as above, performs the entire action in dealing with the sacred Host Itself. The danger of leaving particles of the Host on one's own hands is then avoided, as well as more worrying sacrileges such as the Host being taken away, uneaten, dropped on the floor, or even taken to Satanic gatherings. If a particle is left on the communicant's hand, however small and invisible to the eye, It is still our Lord entire, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. He remains fully present in the species of the Host until the Host looses the accidents of bread. Moreover, if we are allowed to directly touch the Blessed Sacrament, we may become casual or careless in our Lord's presence, thus giving rise to irreverence before the great Sacrament Itself. Only allowing the priest to touch the Host also increases our respect and reverence, not only of the Blessed Sacrament, but of the priesthood itself and all who take it upon themselves to enter it. The sacred Host is, after all, the very substance of God incarnate: something that demands our extreme reverence and holy fear. To restrict touching It to the priesthood alone can only increase these virtues.

I have covered six main qualities of the traditional Latin Mass above which are certainly not the only ones. The whole ethos of the Mass exhibits a profound belief in the doctrines of the one true Church of Christ, especially in the Holy Sacrifice and the substantial presence of our Lord, Jesus Christ. The beauty and Catholicism of the offertory prayers confirm the doctrine of the Catholic faith in the upcoming consecration, unambiguously. The rubrics of the Mass are very strict; when we attend a Latin Mass we know what to expect - it depends on the Mass itself, not the personalities that surround it. The repeated genuflections of the priest before the sacred species confirm this most divine presence, as well as his repeated signs of the cross over It, before and after the consecration. Before the consecration these actions serve to bless and set the offering apart, after the consecration to signify the reality of the cross before us and its redemptive quality. The genuflections within the creed and the last gospel emphasise our belief in the profound doctrine of the incarnation, the centre of the Christian faith. The striking of the breast, during the Confiteor and the "Lord I am not worthy..." bring in all aspects of our existence to increase our realisation of own unworthiness and the infinite love and mercy of God.

The traditional Mass is not something heard or listened to. It is a divine experience seeping with the beauty of the faith, that touches the heart and soul of all who participate, giving a boost to the spirituality of those who immerse themselves in its mysteries. The secular world is the battleground; the Mass is the place that charges us up, puts us in touch with our divine mission and motivates us to face the prince of this world with great courage and faith.

I conclude by completing the quote by Cardinal Newman, who composed the following glowing praise for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, speaking by the mouth of his hero in his book "Loss and Gain":

I declare, to me nothing is so consoling, so piercing, so thrilling, so overcoming, as the Mass, said as it is among us. I could attend Masses forever and not be tired. It is not a mere form of words, it is a great ACTION - the greatest action that can be on earth. It is not the invocation merely, but, if I dare use the word, the evocation of the Eternal. He becomes present on the altar in flesh and blood, before Whom the angels bow and devils tremble. This is that awful event which is the end and is the interpretation of every part of the solemnity. Words are necessary, but as means, not as ends; they are not mere addresses to the throne of grace, they are instruments of what is far higher, of consecration, of sacrifice. They hurry on, as if impatient to fulfil their mission. Quickly they go - the whole is quick; for they are all parts of one integral action. Quickly they pass, for the Lord Jesus goes with them, as He passed along the lake in the days of His flesh, quickly calling first one and then another. Quickly they pass, because as the lightning which shineth from one part of the heaven unto the other, so is the coming of the Son of man. Quickly they pass; for they are as the words of Moses, when the Lord came down in the cloud, calling on the name of the Lord as He passed by: 'The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering and abundant in goodness and truth.' And as Moses on the mountain, so we, too, 'make haste and bow our heads to the earth, and adore.' So we, all around, each in his place, looking out for the great Advent, 'waiting for the moving of the water,' each in his place, with his own heart, with his own wants, with his own thoughts, with his own intentions, with his own prayers, separate but concordant, watching what is going on, watching its progress, uniting in its consummation; not painfully and hopelessly following a hard form of prayer from beginning to end, but like a concert of musical instruments, each differing but concurring in a sweet harmony, we take our part with God's priest, supporting him, yet guided by him. There are little children there, and old men, and simple laborers, and students in seminaries, priests preparing for Mass, priests making their thanksgiving; there are innocent maidens, and there are penitent sinners; but out of these many minds rises one eucharistic hymn, and the great Action is the measure and the scope of it.


Holy Mass: Heaven Is a Place on Earth

For some time now, I have been reading The Priest In Union With Christ written by the late Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P., described by some as “probably the 20th century’s greatest theologian” and “one of the Church’s all-time greatest authorities on the spiritual life.”
Given the on-going attack on the nature of the priesthood, our priests and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, this is a book you should read and give to any priest you treasure.
The wonderful Father Garrigou-Lagrange urges all of his readers to always remember “that the principal Priest in the sacrifice of the Mass is Christ, and that the celebrant must be striving for an actual and closer union with Him.” Does this truth come as a surprise to you?
He then goes on to describe the different ways of celebrating Mass: the sacrilegious Mass, the Mass which is said hurriedly, the Mass which is outwardly correct but lacks the spirit of faith, the Mass which is faithfully and worthily celebrated, and the Mass of the Saints.
We would all do well to read, reflect and ponder these various descriptions. But I want to focus today on the Mass which is faithfully and worthily celebrated. – “a Mass offered in a spirit of faith, of confidence in God and of love for God and one’s neighbor”.
“In such a sacrifice, we witness the impulse and guidance of the Theological Virtues which inspire the virtue of religion. The Kyrie Eleison is a genuine prayer of petition; the Gloria in Excelsis Deo is an act of adoration of God on high; the Gospel of the day is read with keen belief in what it contains; the words of Consecration are pronounced by a minister in actual union with Christ the principal Offerer, by one who realizes to some extent the wide diffusion of the spiritual effects of his offering and sacramental immolation to the souls in this world and to those in Purgatory. The Agnus Dei is a sincere request for the forgiveness of sin; the priest’s Communion leaves nothing to be desired – it is always more fervent and more fruitful than the day before because of the daily growth in charity produced by the Sacrament of the Eucharist. The distribution of Holy Communion is not approached in any perfunctory spirit, but is treated as the means of bestowing on the faithful, superabundant life, of giving them an even greater share in the divine life…Afterwards the priest will make his private thanksgiving, which, if time permits, will be prolonged on certain feast days in the form of mental prayer. There is no more suitable time for intimate prayer than when Christ is sacramentally present within us, and when our soul, if recollected, is under His actual influence.”
But Michael, but Michael (imitating with great respect the literary style of Father Z): Father Garrigou-Lagrange wrote those words prior to the Mass changes implemented by Vatican II, so they have no relevance to us today. An expert I am not, but I do know this: Vatican II never mandated the removal of Latin from the Mass and never, and could never, change its supernatural nature or the reverence with which it must be celebrated. Man did this and we are now paying dearly for those errors.
To my simple layman’s mind, and with the aid of Father Peter Girard, O.P., I have come to understand that when we participate in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, we are really being spiritually transported beyond the realm of earthly time and space and entering into the on-going heavenly liturgy which someday we hope to enjoy.
Is this how you experience Mass?
How blessed you are!