Thursday, May 15, 2008

Cardinal Noe on the "Smoke of Satan" and L'Osservatore Romano on the new Roman personal parish

A couple of quick notes on some relevant stories today. The NLM may provide full translations of both stories shortly, but for the moment, a summary.

The Italian blog, Papa Ratzinger, is reporting on an article in tomorrow's edition of L'Osservatore Romano about the new personal parish established in Rome which will celebrate the usus antiquior, and which the FSSP will staff: Ss. Trinita dei Pellegrini.

The article notes that "...Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, stresses the significance of establishing a parish in the center of Rome for the spiritual needs of the faithful traditionalists, who normally follow the 'extraordinary form'" and that this will be of "exemplary value for other dioceses, both in Italy and elsewhere."

Indeed, as we have seen with the altar arrangement of Pope Benedict -- to take one example -- what happens in Rome, be it papal Masses or in the diocesan life of the See of Peter, can have influence, can serve as a model and can be pointed to in this regard.

In other Italian news, Petrus has an exclusive interview with Cardinal Noe, the former papal Master of Ceremonies under Paul VI on through to the earlier years of John Paul II's pontificate, which addresses the question of what Paul VI was referring to in his famed "smoke in the sanctuary" remark.

On that question, Cardinal Noe reveals that Paul VI meant to speak of all those clergy, even bishops and cardinals, who poorly celebrated the sacred liturgy through an erroneous interpretation and application of Vatican II, and who thereby distorted the traditional liturgy of the Church.

Here is the relevant passage:

You at Petrus, have made a real blow, because I am in a position of revealing for the first time what Paul VI meant to denounce with that statement. Here it is. Pope Montini [speaking of Satan] meant to classify all those priests, bishops and cardinals who didn’t render worship to the Lord by badly celebrating Holy Mass through an erroneous interpretation and application of the Second Vatican Council. He spoke of the smoke of Satan [with regard to these clergy] who turned Holy Mass into straw in the name of creativity, but who in truth were possessed of the vainglory and the pride of the Evil One. Therefore, the smoke of Satan was none other than the mentality that wanted to distort the traditional canons and liturgy of the Eucharistic ceremony.

The interview presents Cardinal Noe's clear affinity and love for Pope Montini. He speaks of his role as master of ceremonies during the time of the liturgical reform. He also spoke of the fact that the liturgy must always be celebrated with decorum and spoke highly of the manner in which Pope Benedict XVI celebrated the liturgy.

Cardinal Noe further notes that there is a need to "recover, and quickly" the sense of the sacred in the liturgy.

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