Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Laetificat: Towards a sacred continuity


On Wednesday, at the annual meeting of the Tridentine Mass Society of Madison, I was elected to the organization’s board, together with youthful local blogger Ben Yanke, who just secured an internship with New Liturgical Movement blog, and Father John Zuhlsdorf, who is TMSM president, having been nominated for such by Bishop Morlino. Ben pointed out it’s “the blogger board.” It’s also definitely the Pope Benedict XVI “hermeneutic of continuity” board.

There are many opinions about the older form of the Mass. Recently a Cardinal from Germany, not a fan of the old Mass, said, “I have the impression that the whole enthusiasm for the Latin has a lot to do with prestige and the false pretenses of a supposed cultural elite.”

I wonder if that’s why Vatican II said “[p]articular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites,” and that “…steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able to say or sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them,” and of course prestige and elitism is surely the most reasonable explanation for why Vatican II says that “[t]he Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as proper to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services.” (Sacrosanctum Concilium)

There is a rightness to the old Mass, “the extraordinary form,” that refreshes and renews the soul; we step out of the vernacular and mundane to encounter God; it can be like a retreat. I love Novus Ordo Mass, “the ordinary form,” in Latin too. With the old Mass you have the Gregorian chant intact in the traditional calendar, and this also I fell in love with, through my experience with the Schola Cantorum, the Gregorian chant choir. Vatican II calls that musical heritage a “treasure of inestimable value.” I love the prayers at the foot of the altar. I don’t know about you, but I do need to be sprinkled with holy water, and I do need the triple non sum dignus.
continue at Laetificat: Towards a sacred continuity

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