Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Catholic World News : French clerics oppose restoration of Latin Mass

[Sorry for the quiet today folks. I've been away until now. As for this story, this opposition is surely no surprise. However, opposition is not strictly a reason to not forge ahead for the sake of the greater good and longer term end.

Unfortunately, the ideas expressed in the quoted portions of this article are quite problematic. First off, we must be realistic: it is quite resasonable to propose that there have been significant problems in the implementation of Vatican II, and thus can one really make this into an issue of being loyal to Vatican II"? Whom and in which particular matters is one or isn't one being loyal to Vatican II? The question is not so simplistic as adhering to the Pauline liturgy = loyalty to Vatican II, and adhering to the Tridentine liturgy means one is disloyal unless we presuppose a reasonably proximate implementation of the Conciliar decrees -- something not presupposed in even the highest levels of the Church.

Second, the issue isn't as simplistic as the SSPX and their appeasement. It goes beyond this to those in full communion with the Church. In this regard as well is the former characterization about conciliar loyalty neither accurate, nor particularly charitable.

Third, as regards the issue of a multiplicity of rites; while indeed this scenario is not precisely the same as our different rites and geographical uses, nonetheless, there has been and still is a multiplicity of rites within the Church. Thus to argue that this would be contrary to unity seems quite untenable -- and again, more representative of ideological issues. There is an intolerance in this matter I believe, and it is an intolerance which has not served the Church well, either in this case, or in others. We need to move beyond it and beyond a sense of singular Roman liturgy.

Finally, with regards all of this, we must remember that we are not in a perfect scenario. This is because of the problems of the post-conciliar immplementation. As such, it is reasonable to expect all the normal rules to apply in the here and now? While some might not consider it ideal, ours is not an ideal state.]

Catholic World News : French clerics oppose restoration of Latin Mass

French clerics oppose restoration of Latin Mass

Oct. 24 ( - French clerics are leading the opposition to release of a papal document that would allow wider use of the traditional Latin Mass.

A group of 35 French bishops and priests have issued a statement urging Pope Benedict XVI (bio - news) not to issue the motu proprio that has been widely discussed in recent weeks. The clerics predict that by allowing broader use of the Tridentine rite, the papal document would "plunge us back into the liturgical life of another age."

Infocatholo, the news agency sponsored by the French bishops' conference, reports that the papal document has been edited and is ready for release. But the bishops' news agency says that there is strong opposition to the proposed move within the Roman Curia.

The opposition is particularly evident among French bishops, many of whom have given clear public indications of their hostility toward the papal initiative. Bishop Robert Le Gall of Toulouse told the daily La Croix that permission to use the Latin Mass would "create grave difficulties, especially for those who have remained loyal to Vatican II." Sounding the same theme, Bishop Andre Lacrampe of Besançon said that "one cannot erase Vatican II with a stroke of the pen."

Opponents of the Latin Mass have based their arguments on the premise that the Pope's proposal would be designed to encourage members of the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) to return to communion with the Holy See. Bishop Claude Dagens of Angouleme told the weekly La Vie that a change in liturgical discipline would not achieve that result. He explained, "You can't pretend that Archbishop Lefebvre's break with the Church was caused only by the liturgy."

But other French bishops objected to use of the old liturgical rite by priests who have left the SSPX, to set up the new Institute of the Good Shepherd. Archbishop Andre Vingt-Trois of Paris complained that the new Institute, with Vatican approval, has already begun work in the Paris archdiocese. And Bishop Michel Pansard of Chartres said that he was "astonished" to learn that the traditionalist group was opening a seminary without first consulting him.

Infocatho, the bishops' new agency, gave a clear indication of its own perspective in the news report on the French clerics' complaints. The adoption of a policy allowing free use of either the Tridentine liturgy or the post-conciliar Novus Ordo, Infocatho said, would divide the Church, because "Eucharistic bi-ritualism in the Latin Catholic Church contradicts what the Eucharist signifies."

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