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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Make him Mr. Lahey Now!

I was going to post little this week and generally stay away from controversial issues, but this has caused me to rethink that. Instead of his putrid defense and his waxing about renewing his past "homosexual" relationships, he should be accepting his sentence with no defense and spending after that civil penalty a life or prayer and penance in a monastery for his crimes against the Church, children and his own soul.

Well, he lives on in CBWIII, another reason to rid our churches of that wretched little book of his handiwork. Imagine, he was wrecking our liturgy whilst being a sodomite in bishops clothing and looking at little boys, naked, in sexual positions on his computer.

You know, this guy and Mr. Weakland really show how the buggery committed by these sodomies really darkens the conscience.

Perhaps Salt + Light might want to think this post that this man is "a kind and gentle pastor, particularly sensitive to the needs of those who have suffered the scourge of sexual abuse."

Seraphic is equally disgusted and has kept her cool, I will write no more, I cannot keep my cool.

At the risk of committing a sin, I will refrain from writing anything else on this except for this:


Defrock him now!

Read the putrid story here.

Toronto Missa Cantata-Epiphany of the LORD

Una Voce Toronto has announced that a Missa Cantata in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite will be celebrated on Friday, January 6, 2012 at 7:30PM at St. Lawrence the Martyr Catholic Church.

If you are in Toronto, please make an effort to attend and support the growth of the Traditional Latin Mass.

More information can be found here on Facebook or at http://www.unavocetoronto.blogspot.com/
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Friday, 16 December 2011

SSPX Assessment of "Doctrinal Preamble"

I don't often post on matters of the SSPX, but I do think that this is important and I have lifted it here from Rorate Caeli blog. No doubt, for those who have been following the issues for the last while can pretty well confirm that the difficult point is indeed what Bishop Fellay says below; “Yes, you can criticize the Council, but on one condition: it is necessary to accept it first.”

If you read this blog, you probably tend to agree that there are issues with the implementation and interpretation of the documents of the Second Vatican Council, at least as a minimum. The Holy Father has worked unceasingly to ensure the correct "hermeneuitic of continuity." Bishop Fellay and the SSPX are actually doing all of us a favour because they are forcing the Vatican to address the matters. On the other hand, they are also displaying a prideful and strident stance that is also disconcerting. Who is right? Can we blindly say that the SSPX is wrong because we follow Rome? Can the Vatican be right on all of this and the SSPX is in fact, schismatic and disobedient? Where does the truth lay?

Clearly, the Holy Father wants this matter solved and formal unity established and he has gone a long way towards this. Summorum Pontificum, the lifting of the Excommunications, and the Doctrinal Talks and this latest Preamble prove this. What has the SSPX given?

Will the Pope go one step further, or maybe two? Can he, will he simply lift all priestly suspensions and recognise all marriages and jurisdictional matter of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, or as some would prefer, Penance. What if he grants them a Personal Prelature and global diocese?

This whole matter is frustrating and going on far too long. It must be solved and soon, positions are hardening. If these talks to do not succeed, if there is not suitable good will and charity around all parties then the risk is that nothing further will happen and eventually, they will Consecrate another priest as bishop. If that happens, then it would seem that at this point, the Pope would be deeply hurt and left with no alternative but to declare that it is in fact, a formal schism.

Let us hope and pray that pride is reduced and charity abounds and that truth prevails.

From the sermon delivered by the Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX), Bp. Bernard Fellay, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. These are the latest words of that Fraternity on the ongoing discussions with the Apostolic See.
You have all heard that there was a proposal from Rome, a proposal that said, “We are ready to recognize you [canonically].” The problem is that there is always a condition. This condition may have varied a bit in its formulation, but basically it is always the same. This condition is: you must accept the Council. One could sum up the current situation by saying: “Yes, you can criticize the Council, but on one condition: it is necessary to accept it first.” Which leaves us saying, “What can we criticize afterwards?”

I think that this is an honest summary of the present situation. And it is not difficult to describe for you our response.

Obviously, the formulas are more and more interesting, closer and closer to what we say. We have arrived by now at a point that clearly shows the depth of the problem. In that famous proposal this is what they tell us: “You commit yourselves to acknowledging that with regard to points from the Council that cause difficulties, the only way to understand those points is to understand them in light of the continuous, perpetual Tradition, in light of the preceding Magisterium.” The light of Tradition is the only way by which one can understand the dubious points. They even go further: “Any proposition and any interpretation of the dubious texts that was opposed to that perpetual Magisterium, that continual Magisterium of the Church must be rejected.” That is what we have always said. But there is a tiny little incidental clause that adds, “as the New Catechism says”. Now the New Catechism adopts the Council.

In other words, concerning the principle we can only agree. As for the application, it is completely the opposite. They claim that they are applying the principle by saying: everything that was done at the Council is faithful to Tradition, is consistent with Tradition, whether it be ecumenism or religious liberty. That shows you the seriousness of the problem. There is a problem somewhere. It is not possible otherwise. The problem is based on the understanding of certain words. And these words are of course “Tradition” and “Magisterium”. Their way of understanding these words is subjective. Certainly there are cases in which one can understand “tradition” in the sense of “transmit”: the act of transmitting is a transmission. But the usual way of understanding this word has bearing on its content. What is transmitted? What is transmitted from generation to generation? The classical definition of Tradition is “that which has always been believed by all, everywhere and at all times” (Commonitorium by St. Vincent of Lerins). Here the expression “That which” designates the object. But nowadays, it is as though we went from the object to the subject, so as to consider only the one who transmits.

That is why they talk to you about “living tradition”, because the one who transmits, when he transmits, is alive. Now life moves, it changes. The popes change… and therefore tradition changes, but it remains tradition. It is the same tradition, but one that changes. The Church has also taken this sense into consideration, but in an altogether secondary way. That is not what she is talking about when she talks about Tradition; what we call the deposit of the faith, the set of truths that the Good Lord has entrusted to the Church so that she might transmit it from generation to generation, so that souls might be saved. This content is what she means. And this is the reason why, with the definition of infallibility at the First Vatican Council, the Church teaches that the Holy Ghost has effectively been promised to St. Peter and to his successors, therefore to the popes. But He was not promised in such a way that the popes might teach something new by a new revelation. He was promised so that, with the help of the Holy Ghost, Saint Peter and the popes might preserve holily and transmit faithfully that which does not change, the revealed deposit.

That is where we are. That is what we are trying to do, since there is in fact a gesture made by Rome toward us, we must recognize it, a surprising gesture after these doctrinal discussions in which we determined that we were not in agreement. In effect it is a situation similar to that of two persons who meet, discuss something and arrive at the conclusion that they do not agree. What do you do then? Rome tells us: “You accept nevertheless!” And we reply: “It is not possible.” And so what we decide to do, besides answering that it is not possible, is to tell them: Wouldn’t you like to look at things a bit differently? Wouldn’t you like to try to understand that the Society is not the one that is a problem. There is indeed a problem in the Church, but it is not the Society; we are not a problem because we are saying that there is a problem. Then we ask them to deal with the real problem. We are ready; we want only one thing and it is precisely to attack the real problem.

You understand very well that humanly speaking there is no great hope that they will agree to change such a position. Maybe the disappointments that the Church has experienced will move them? The fact that currently the disaster, the sterility is more clearly evident: there are no more vocations. It is frightening. I saw, a few moments ago, the statistics for the Sisters of Charity, the nuns who used to be everywhere in France: between thirty and forty years of age I think that there are still three left in all of France. Between the ages of 40 and 50, likewise three. The majority, in other words almost 200, are between 70 and 80 or between 80 and 90. Some of them are more than 100 years old, and they are more numerous than those who are 20, 30, 40 or 50 years old. If you take the ones from 20 to 50 years of age, you have one more than the group of those who are 100 years old or more: 9 as opposed to 8. Those nuns who used to do all sorts of charitable works in all the rural areas!

And it is over. That is one example among thousands. Take the priests. Take instances from whatever area you want: it is a Church that is dying, disappearing. Nevertheless that ought to make people reflect. We think, we hope that some are beginning to reflect. People do get the impression that that is just not enough. Of course, grace is needed. It is necessary to pray.

Pray! Pray that the Good Lord will truly deliver the Church, that the Blessed Virgin will do something. She is the one who promised that her Immaculate Heart would triumph at the end to get the Church out of this disaster. For us who are involved in this great battle for the Church, it is an extraordinary honor to be able to be members of this Society today. And so let us ask the Most Blessed Virgin Mary that we might be worthy members of this Society. Let us live faithfully according to its statutes. Follow the seminary rules, as it is expected of you, with all your heart, while practicing the great charity that the Statutes of the Society require of us. Let us request it from the Most Blessed Virgin Mary so that really, every day, we might please God, that we might sanctify ourselves and thereby might be able to win souls for the Good Lord, those souls that are entrusted to us, for the greater glory of God, for the honor of the Most Blessed Virgin and that of the Church. Amen.

[Source & translation: DICI, Dec. 15, 2011]

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Divinum Officium and daily Missa - On-line Resources

The Internet has brought many resources to those interested in the Liturgy of the Church in all its Forms.

Here is a website which has the daily Mass according to the Roman Missal of 1962 and even the Divine Office from the ancient Monastic, to Trent to the Rubrics and New Calendar of 1962.

What an enormous work and to give due credit to the founder, let us read from their page.

This website was created and designed by the late Laszlo Kiss. Mr. Kiss, longtime resident of Forrest Lake, Illinois, died suddenly at his home on Monday, 11 July 2011, shortly after returning from a walk with his wife Marta. He was three days shy of his 73rd birthday. Mr. Kiss was born in Budapest, Hungary, on 14 July 1938, and married Marta Noske on 31 January 1968. He worked in Budapest as a computer engineer until emigrating to the United States of America in 1982. In 1983, he developed "Image," one of the first computer-controlled manufacturing systems in the world (still in use to this day). He retired in 2000, and, among other things, selflessly devoted hundreds of hours to creating the website divinumofficium.com, which provides free access to many different versions of the Divine Office (or breviary), the traditional daily prayer book of the Roman Catholic Church. His funeral was held at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Volo, Illinois, on the Feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel (16 July). Mr. Kiss is survived by three brothers in Hungary, and in the States by his loving wife Marta (of forty-three years), their two sons Zoltan and Chaba, and their two grandchildren Sophie and Ryan.
On Monday, August 15, 2011, the Solemnity of the Assumption of Our Lady, The Divinum Officium Project was founded, with the permission of Laszlo's son Chaba, to preserve and further Laszlo's work and to promote the worship of the Triune God through the Divine Office. Currently, The Divinum Officium Project consists of a diocesan priest as well as three software developers who maintain the site and ensure its accuracy.
T.A.D.M.N.
May Mr. Kiss rest in peace.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

From the new and improved ICEL

A Facebook friend posted a column by Father Raymond J. de Souza in the Catholic Register. In a manner we've come to appreciate from Father Z, Father de Souza remnds us what the prayer really says.

This coming Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Advent has a very special Collect in both the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite

Last year and for the forty-one years before, in the Novus Ordo Missae, this is what we heard:

Lord,
Fill our hearts with your love,

and as you revealed to us by an angel
the coming of your Son as man,
so lead us through His suffering and death
to the glory of His resurrection,
for He lives and reigns…


This Sunday coming, we will hear this:

Pour forth, we beseech you, O Lord,
your grace into our hearts,

that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ your Son
was made known by the message of an Angel,
may by His Passion and Cross
be brought to the glory of the Resurrection.
Who lives and reigns…


Does it sound familiar?

It should as it is commonly known as the Angelus Prayer said three times a day.

What the translators at ICEL did to the Mass in English and us was a crime and a pretty blatant one at that, too!

That Blessed John Paul II rectified this not only with the Third Typical Edtion of the Roman Missal but more importantly, Liturgiam Authenticum and the Vox Clara Commission is one more reason why he his Blessed.

How many more nice surprises in the new Roman Missal are in store for us?



Saturday, 10 December 2011

Scarboro Foreign Mission Syncretism

One post below is the evidence of liturgical abuse of the Holy Mass in the new Roman Missal translation by the Superior General of the Scarboro Foreign Missions, once known as the China Mission" a Society of Apostolic Life in the Archdiocese of Toronto.

Based on their infamous "Golden Rule" poster where Catholicism is just one of a number of options, what else can we expect?

I wonder what Monsignor Fraser would think?


"The Golden Rule" poster promulgated by the Scarboro Foreign Missions

Friday, 9 December 2011

"For All" or "For Many"...whatever

I have said it before and I will say it again.

A corrected translation is not enough.

Why does this priest change the words of the Opening Greeting, the Penitential Rite, the Offertory, the Consecration?

He chooses not to say "for many" but does not say "for all" just, "for you."
We have a mixing of the old and new.When is this going to end?

Why does Salt + Light TV which broadcasts this daily, not deal with this problem?  Can they even? I appreciate that this is again, not a Salt + Light production but surely over the years, they've known about this kind of liturgical carelessness and innovation. I feel for them; they need to broadcast the Mass and they buy it from the National Catholic Broadcasting Council.

Well, who exactly are they?

The priest here is Father Jack Lynch, Superior General of the Scarboro Foreign Missions once known as the China Mission.

Father Lynch, this is causing great distress amongst the faithful, read the comments on Youtube. This is a against Sacrosanctam Concilium the teachings of Blessed John Paul II and the GIRM. Please stop changing the words. Please celebrate the Mass according to the words.




The one above, the first week of the new Roman Missal was no mistake or accident. He does it again below:





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52. All of this makes clear the great responsibility which belongs to priests in particular for the celebration of the Eucharist. It is their responsibility to preside at the Eucharist in persona Christi and to provide a witness to and a service of communion not only for the community directly taking part in the celebration, but also for the universal Church, which is a part of every Eucharist. It must be lamented that, especially in the years following the post-conciliar liturgical reform, as a result of a misguided sense of creativity and adaptation there have been a number of abuses which have been a source of suffering for many. A certain reaction against “formalism” has led some, especially in certain regions, to consider the “forms” chosen by the Church's great liturgical tradition and her Magisterium as non-binding and to introduce unauthorized innovations which are often completely inappropriate. 

I consider it my duty, therefore to appeal urgently that the liturgical norms for the celebration of the Eucharist be observed with great fidelity. These norms are a concrete expression of the authentically ecclesial nature of the Eucharist; this is their deepest meaning. Liturgy is never anyone's private property, be it of the celebrant or of the community in which the mysteries are celebrated. The Apostle Paul had to address fiery words to the community of Corinth because of grave shortcomings in their celebration of the Eucharist resulting in divisions (schismata) and the emergence of factions (haireseis) (cf. 1 Cor 11:17-34). Our time, too, calls for a renewed awareness and appreciation of liturgical norms as a reflection of, and a witness to, the one universal Church made present in every celebration of the Eucharist. Priests who faithfully celebrate Mass according to the liturgical norms, and communities which conform to those norms, quietly but eloquently demonstrate their love for the Church. Precisely to bring out more clearly this deeper meaning of liturgical norms, I have asked the competent offices of the Roman Curia to prepare a more specific document, including prescriptions of a juridical nature, on this very important subject. No one is permitted to undervalue the mystery entrusted to our hands: it is too great for anyone to feel free to treat it lightly and with disregard for its sacredness and its universality. Blessed John Paul II, ENCYCLICAL LETTERECCLESIA DE EUCHARISTIA

Why are "trads" so ignorant and nasty?

While this blog has often been critical of many actions in the liturgy particularly the manner in which the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite is often celebrated, this time my attention is going to be turned in a different direction.

Do we go to Mass to worship and pray or do we go to make a fuss to others about little things?

Many of us have been bothered by liturgical abuse in the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite. The correct response is to note it and deal with it after Mass with the priest or bishop. On the other hand, you can do what I've often done, get up and leave.

However, this little column is going to be a little different from what is usually posted here because it needs to be said and that is liturgical abuse by the laity in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. But first, let me rant a little more so you get the picture of where I am coming from.

Some people who attend the Traditional Latin Mass can try ones patience.

Now, I have never considered myself a "Trad" or a "Traditionalist," someone has even had the temerity to label me a "Neo-Cath." Another labelled me as having "modernistic tendencies." Other have said that I am  a "Trad" and other that I am not "Trad" enough.

Well, they can think whatever they want, I am a Catholic.

But while these labels are rather unfortunate, I'm going to nevertheless, use one.

"Trads" can be a nasty group and give the cause a bad name.

Last night in Toronto a beautiful Mass was held for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was a Missa Solemnis at St. Lawrence the Martyr in Toronto. The three Sacred Ministers were joined by three priests "in choro." The Servers were excellent as usual and the organist and choir were splendid.

It's the cranks that show up that are the problem.

So, let me rant because this is my blog.


1. Look friends, many people that come to these Masses are first timers. If they don't read the note in the liturgical handout about not singing the Pater Noster and they sing it, so what? But when you "trads" all go sssshhhhhh what you did was actually a vile intrusion on the Holy Mass. They acted in singing out of innocent ignorance, you acted out of rudeness, malice and what you did was a debasement of the liturgy. Stop it! What you "trads" did was a liturgical abuse.

2. Gothic Vestments are NOT NOVUS ORDO. They are called "Gothic" for a reason. In fact, the conical style "Novus Ordo" vestment as you refer it is actually of more ancient use than the "Roman" or "Fiddleback." Now, stop the whining about these little things and smarten up.
3. Artwork that shows the Blessed Virgin Mary's hair in paintings of the Immaculate Conception are not "Vatican II" and do not indicate that I am a "modernist." Until the puritanical Victorian 19th century with its feminine featured Jesus and its burka clad young Virgin and the über-puritanical attitude of you 21st century "Trads" the Immaculate Conception was portrayed as a pre-pubescent girl, a young virgin and without a veil as in the post two below this one which is a more recent rendition of the style of the many in the same style from the 15th century onward.
4. A Read Mass (Missa Lecta) with Dialogue is not a "Novus Ordo" invention. Nor is standing for the Pater Noster and the Postcommunion a "Novus Ordo" invention. The Church has desired that the people respond to the priest even though you have your preference for absolute silence. This is not where we are now or where the restoration will be. So you can drop this paranoia about NovusOrdoIsms. This is not a liturgical experiment or innovation. Read the rubrics!


You would think that these "trads" would be overjoyed with what has been happening since Pope Benedict XVI issued Summorum Pontificum and the recent Universae Ecclesiae.
As an example, when was the last time a Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite was offered in the Archdiocese of Toronto before last night? How about over 40 years ago!

Now behave yourself and be joyful for what has been accomplished, if you can be.


Some "trads" are really an offering up.


There, I feel better now.

More on St. Michael's Cathedral Music

A few weeks ago, I posted an article about changes at the Cathedral in Toronto over some unfortunate tinkering to the sacred music program provided by St. Michael's Choir School. Dorothy Cummings Maclean has written a feature in the Catholic Register on the Cathedral and the Choir School. (N.B. the picture embedded in the online edition is an error and is actually of Notre Dame Basilica Cathedral, Ottawa.)
An ancient treasure chest of music

Written by Dorothy Cummings McLean

Living as I do across the Atlantic Ocean, I still manage to keep abreast of events in Toronto. The Internet is like a seashell, sighing in my ear.

The most recent news is that St. Michael’s Cathedral is altering the order of its famous music, provided since 1937 by St. Michael’s Choir School.

Dorothy Cummings McLean originally from Willowdale in Toronto now lives with her husband in Edinburgh,, Scotland where she attends the parish administered by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. Her brother attended St. Michael's Choir School and there she developed her love of the liturgy and sacred music.  She is the author of the blog Seraphic Singles and the book of the same name; and the blog Seraphic Goes to Scotland.

We did not know each other at the time, but we both attended St. Michael's Cathedral in the 1980's. Me, as a returning Catholic and she as the sister of a choir boy.

The result of course, was the same.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

O Mary, conceived without sin...

You are all beautiful, Mary,
and the original stain is not in you.
Your clothing is white as snow,
and your face is like the sun.
You are all beautiful, Mary,
and the original stain is not in you.
You are the glory of Jerusalem,

you are the joy of Israel,
you give honour to our people.
You are all beautiful, Mary





Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Missa Solemnis in Toronto - Immaculate Conception

A Solemn High Mass (Missa Solemnis) will be held in Toronto on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary this Thursday, December 8 at 7:30PM.

The Mass will be celebrated at St. Lawrence the Martyr Scarborough at 2011 Lawrence Avenue East, just west of Kennedy Road on the north side. The Mass is sponsored by Una Voce Toronto and a reception will follow in the Church Hall. More infomration is here and here on Facebook.

The Liturgical progrma of Sacred Music includes:

Organ Prelude: Alvus Tumescit Virgo - Michael Praetorius (1571-1621)
Processional Hymn: The God Whom Earth and See and Sky Quem terra, pontus, aethera -Venantius Fortunatus, 539-609
Missa cum Jubilo-Gregorian Mass IX
Credo III
Gregorian Chant Propers - Liber Usualis
Ave  Maria - Jacques Arcadelt-Pierre-Louis Dietsch
Jesu Rex Admirablis - Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina
Alma Redemptoris Mater - Tonus Simplex
Immaculate Mary - Lourdes Hymn
Organ postlude: Ricercar pro Tempore Adventus super Initium Cantilenae: Ave Maria klare - J.K.F. Fischer  1656 - 1746 



Monday, 5 December 2011

Archbishop Prendergast read the GIRM!

Archbishiop Terence Prendergast, S.J. of Ottawa may need read this blog (or perhaps he might) but he sure read the GIRM (General Instruction of the Roman Missal) and understands fully the mind of the Church on these matters. Thanks to SoCon for the information.

May the Archbishop be richly blest for his clarity, his teaching and his leadership and loyalty and may other bishops in Canada follow his example: (bolding is my emphasis).


Letter to the Archdiocese of Ottawa
on the Implementation of the Third Edition
of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ:

The First Sunday of Advent sees the introduction of a new translation of the Roman Missal for the English-speaking members of the Archdiocese. I am confident that the priests of the Archdiocese have been preparing the faithful on the new prayers and responses contained in the new translation. November 27 is also the date on which a new version of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal comes into effect.
After discussing with priests how to carry out these changes in our liturgical life, I have determined that, in the Archdiocese of Ottawa, we will do this in stages, gradually putting into effect practices that the Universal Church is inviting us to adopt so as to enrich the sacred liturgy as an offering pleasing to God.
I will be writing you several times in the new liturgical year, proposing an ordered implementation of new directives, some of which will come into effect in Advent, others in Lent, still others during Eastertide and at Pentecost.
In the meantime, I encourage priests, religious and the faithful to read and reflect upon the Third Edition of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM). The General Instruction of the Roman Missal may be found in the new Roman Missal, is available as an offprint from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and may be downloaded from the website of its Liturgy Office [cf. www.romanmissal.ca/GIRM.pdf]. Liturgy committees will profit from studying it carefully in order to understand the new norms in context.
On this occasion, I wish to draw your attention to several matters: the General Instruction’s invitation to unity in the congregation assembled for the Eucharist—including in posture; the call in the General Instruction for reflective silence at Mass; the Creed to be recited on Sundays and major feasts; and a change with regard to the lectionary in the entrance procession.
The General Instruction offers a wonderful expression of the ideal of unity in the People of God gathered for Eucharistic worship in paragraphs 95-96, which read as follows:

In the celebration of Mass the faithful form a holy people, a people of God’s own possession and a royal priesthood, so that they may give thanks to God and offer the unblemished sacrificial Victim not only by means of the hands of the Priest but also together with him and so that they may learn to offer their very selves. They should, moreover, take care to show this by their deep religious sense and their charity toward brothers and sisters who participate with them in the same celebration. They are consequently to avoid any appearance of singularity or division, keeping in mind that they have only one Father in heaven and that hence are all brothers or sisters one to the other.

Moreover, they are to form one body, whether in hearing the Word of God, or in taking part in the prayers and in the singing, or above all by the common offering of the Sacrifice and by participating together at the Lord’s table. This unity is beautifully apparent from the gestures and bodily postures observed together by the faithful.

The ideal, then, is realized in part when the faithful manifest their unity by common postures. The postures to be observed at various parts of the Mass are spelled out in #43; we are familiar with most of these, including the call to kneel for the consecration (which in the Archdiocese of Ottawa means from the end of the Holy, holy, holy until the acclamation of faith following the Consecration).
What is new is that, except for kneeling at the Consecration, the General Instruction says that the faithful should stand ―from the invitation, Orate, fratres (Pray, brethren) until the end of Mass‖. How this is to function in practice will have to be worked out in particular circumstances, as #43 also says that the faithful may sit ―if appropriate, during the period of sacred silence after Communion‖. Some liturgical experts have suggested that the congregation remain standing until the last person has received Holy Communion at which point people kneel or sit in reverent prayer. When queried whether people may kneel or sit on returning to their place after receiving Holy Communion as, generally speaking, we have been accustomed to doing, the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship said that the expression of unity should not be so emphasized that people are not free to kneel or sit in prayer after Communion.
The note about silent prayer following Communion is part of a wider call for reflective silence at key points in the Mass: in recollection before the Penitential Act; after the celebrant says, ―Let us pray‖; following the readings and the homily. The General Instruction calls us to reflection and an unhurried pace in order to foster true liturgical devotion (cf. #45 and 56).
The new Roman Missal indicates that the Apostles’ Creed, following a long-standing tradition, is appropriate to Lent and Easter. Accordingly, I ask that the Nicene Creed be proclaimed on the other Sundays and holy days of the year when the profession of faith is to be said.
This year our Pastoral Theme—―The Word of God grew and multiplied‖ Acts 12.24—strives to have us focus on the power of God’s Word in our lives. I will speak about this in my next reflection on liturgy in January 2012. The liturgy gives priority to the Gospel and so the description of the entrance procession stresses the Book of the Gospels over the lectionary (cf. GIRM #120 d). Accordingly, the lectionary may no longer be brought in procession but should be placed on the ambo. If a Book of the Gospels is available (the English Sector of the Canadian Church hopes this will be available in a couple of years), it is carried in procession and placed on the altar until it is brought to the ambo.
Changes in the liturgy, dear brothers and sisters, are demanding as they interrupt habitual practices which have become second nature to us. So, I counsel patience at this time and openness to what the Lord is asking of us for our greater spiritual good in this transition.
When he published Third Edition of the Roman Missal, Blessed Pope John Paul II wished this new book of liturgical prayer to open us to new prayer formulas and to liturgical celebration of newly-canonized saints. He saw it as the ongoing manifestation of the renewal of the Sacred Liturgy desired by the Second Vatican Council.
Let us pray that the Holy Spirit will move us to grow more fully into our dignity as the holy people of God by our embracing these new prayers and modified liturgical practices.

       Devotedly yours in Christ,

         Terrence Prendergast, S.J
 Archbishop of Ottawa

On the Solemnity of Christ the King
November 20, 2011

Saturday, 3 December 2011

The Prairie Messenger: Source of the Problem?

Much has been written on this blog over the last ten months on the matter of kneeling in Canada. Some have perhaps found it boring, some have found it informative and helpful. Regardless, I have been blogging on this because I have believed it to be necessary.

While I have no proof, it is my opinion and there are others, including some priests and deacons who share my view, that the professional Catholics in Canada had no desire to see the new Missal or GIRM implemented until at least 2012 when they could see how it went in the United States, as if there was going to be a problem. I suppose they were looking for a backlash so they could say to Rome, "see, we are right not to implement."

They were ordered by Rome in February to implement on Advent I, they had no choice. A meeting was held at the Congregation which included the President and General Secretary of the CCCB where it was made clear to them. It is my view that many resent this and will do only the minimum and in fact, will do less by setting up obstacles to what the GIRM really says or, as in the case of Fred Henry in Calgary, do his own thing.

So, where does this issue on kneeling come from?

The writer below is not the originator of this view but he was a proponent of it here in Canada; though clearly this theology view was certainly all the rage for a long-time, still is in many parts and it has infected many. It is the biological solution that will fix this.

This monk has left a progeny of dissent and their numbers are declining and quickly. They know that their work has been straw but they cannot admit it to themselves.They are still clinging to power but they see that power being stripped away.

They profess to do all this for us, the "laity" and they condemn "clericalism" but they actually hate the laity who love the Church and they are the worst form of clericalists. They are Protestants but did not have the honesty to get up and leave.

You see, they realised it to late and like the manager of whom Our LORD spoke, they are too proud to big and too old to work. So, they stay and suck the life out of the Church for a room and board and while they are still here they sow their seeds of discontent.

Unfortunately, this monk uses historical inaccuracies and does not go into the detail to explain why we may have certain practices. Just because the East does something does not mean it is necessary in the West. The East did not experience Luther and did not have to counter massive disbelief in the Real Presence or Ministerial Priesthood. If we were meant to do as the Last Supper, then we should have Holy Communion "reclining at table" sitting on the floor.

He makes claims and attributes them to Fathers of the Church but he provides no references nor the context of their alleged statements for the reader to verify. We are to take his word for it, his interpretation. He is after all, a cleric.

This Benedictine monk display an incredible ignorance of history and liturgy and he makes continual references to sexuality and displays a rather prophetic phrase from the news recently; you'll pick it up, just don't be drinkin' your coffee over the keyboard.

For your lazy Saturday morning with coffee, here are three articles below from Andrew Britz, OSB (St. Benedict, pray for us). Here is what Catholic Insight had to say about Father Britz. Given that one book of his writings has blurbs from Joan Chittister, who provided the Foreword and Mary-Jo Leddy who calls it a "textbook in political discernment," you kind of get the direction from where he comes. (the lack of capitalisaton of Eucharist is from the PM -- even blogger's spell check wants to capitalise it, Blogger knows!)


Corpus Christi (Prairie Messenger, June 7, 1993)

The eucharist is the centre of our church life, the symbol that signifies the fullness of Christian life. In celebrating the eucharist the church is expressing itself at its deepest level. The eucharist makes present to a celebrating community the full benefits of the Lord’s passover from death to the newness of life.

These three modern expressions, which could easily be expanded, indicate how important the eucharist is to Christian life. The “old” theology, which nurtured most of us pre-Vatican II Catholics, in its own way also highlighted the eucharist’s centrality: the mass is the unbloody sacrifice of Calvary; bread and wine lose their fundamental natural meaning and are transubstantiated into the real presence of Christ; one cuts oneself off from the Christian community and from God (commits a mortal sin) if one intentionally misses Sunday mass.

One might have a personal preference for the old or the new, but in neither school of expression can one avoid an important truth: the mass or eucharist is central to church life, and what we express in that liturgy has monumental ramifications for the communal life of the church and for the self-understanding of each individual Christian.

One would expect, in such circumstances, that the church would struggle mightily in every age and culture to give the eucharist its broadest and fullest expression so that everyone might be personally flabbergasted at the meaning Christ gave them when they became part of his body in baptism. Yet a study of church history shows that the exact opposite is the case.
In most of our history the eucharist was given narrower and narrower expressions.

Rather than highlighting the communal nature of Christian worship, the liturgy became more and more the domain of the clergy and an expression of clerical power. It became something the clergy did for the people. For a priest to celebrate mass became the greatest privilege in the world.


What a surprise that must be for Jesus Christ who gave us a religion he so carefully grounded in reality through such everyday sacramental signs as breaking bread together, drinking wine among friends, indulging the body with the best perfumes, massaging the sick lovingly with oil, making love with uncontrollable climaxes of pure sexuality!

Once the clergy had full control of the liturgy they quite naturally, over many centuries, reshaped it to fit their own image of the perfect church. The everyday work and workplace of the vast majority of the church members no longer rated.

We can speak only for the western world in which we live: we live in a church in which a strong majority of women, especially those professionally trained, experience the church as a community biased against them. We get excited by the divisions the ordination of women is causing in the Church of England, and yet remain blind to the much deeper divisions that continue being enacted in our liturgy and in the exercise of authority in our church.

But it is not principally a problem of our communities of religious women. It is a church problem. Bright young women cannot come to trust a church which they see preferring men to women. They are not about to enter religious life.

We must address fully and honestly the place of women in the church. We must acknowledge as wrong all that has made them feel they are not called to celebrate as full citizens of God’s reign. If women cannot celebrate Corpus Christi (being the Body of Christ) with joyful abandon, it is a sign that we have not been faithful to the Lord.



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Kneeling at the eucharist (Prairie Messenger October 2002)

In their latest newsletter the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Liturgy declares that in normal circumstances “the only licit posture” during the eucharistic prayer is kneeling; the preface with its ancient opening dialogue is apparently not seen as part of the prayer. Churches built in recent times without kneelers must now have them added to the structure (see page 5).

While demanding considerably more kneeling than is suggested to national conferences of bishops in the Vatican’s updated General Instruction of the Roman Missal, the American bishops see any variance from the prescribed norms as either “a private inclination or an arbitrary choice.”

Those seem like harsh words indeed for those pastoral liturgists who are convinced that standing at the eucharist has been indisputably the traditional practice of the universal church for more than half of its history, and is still the uniform practice of the Eastern churches.

One must wonder what the universally recognized “heavyweight” among eastern doctors of the church, St. Basil, would think on reading that to believe it is right and proper to stand at the eucharist is no more than “a private inclination or an arbitrary choice.” That same Basil once declared — admittedly in an excessive outburst of rhetoric — that it is a mortal sin for a Christian to kneel publicly anywhere during the Fifty Days of Easter, or anytime during the whole year (Lent included) during the eucharistic prayer.

No wonder that the first privilege excommunicated Christians lost was that of standing among the faithful at the eucharist. But lest one think that this is only eastern theology burdened with the thinking of such bishops as the Cappadocian Fathers, one does well to remember that, at the heart of the Roman Canon, the only eucharist prayer of the Roman Rite for more than a thousand years, the People of God are called the circumstantes: those standing around the table of the Lord.

Saint John Chrysostom, the church’s key theologian on the meaning of the priesthood of Christ, interpreted the first-century dialogue that opens every eucharistic prayer in both the East and the West as the People of God’s empowering of their clergy to celebrate for them the Sacred Mysteries of the Lord’s death and resurrection in the eucharist.
While GIRM suggests to the bishops’ conferences that they have the people kneel from the Sanctus to the end of the Last Supper Narrative, the American bishops call for kneeling until the Great Amen — ostensibly to give a uniform sign to the whole eucharistic prayer.

One can understand that the American bishops could find no rationale for rising after the Last Supper Narrative, but their solution is even more difficult to understand. They end up asking the People of God to stand for the introduction to the prayer, which is to set the tone for what is to follow, and for their complete acceptance of the prayer in the Great Amen, which St. Augustine says should reverberate throughout the church like a thunderclap.
To kneel during a prayer that is introduced, situated and given its colour by the ancient dialogue and the preface, and then to rise in order to accept it surely makes little sense.

Of course, the reason given for kneeling is to show profound adoration. The eucharist is unquestionably the heart and soul of our liturgy and thus requires our most profound response. But is begging for mercy and/or adoring God on our knees our most profound response?

The ancient dialogue and the preface would indicate otherwise. They clearly call us to enter into the mystery of Christ with joyous thanksgiving, and in a celebratory mode that places the Christian community not as foreign visitors beyond the communion rail but at the heart of the celebration.

St. Augustine says it beautifully in one of his Eastertide homilies: “It is your mystery which has been placed on the altar of the Lord; you receive your own mystery. You say Amen to what you are” (272).

Anthropologists remind us, again and again, that celebration is the deepest action of the human person. Many of those who advocate kneeling at the eucharist do so because they are afraid that thanking God “for counting us worthy to stand in his presence”  (Eucharistic Prayer II) is too shallow a response. St. Augustine’s homily, on the other hand, states that by centring, first of all, on the grace we have already received, our reverence for the special presence of Jesus Christ in the eucharist will only be deepened.

One can only hope and pray that the Canadian bishops will hold fast to their traditional teaching that the deepest expression of the Christian people on the Lord’s day is to stand with heads held high in God’s presence, in loving service of Jesus’ “flesh given for the life of the world” (Jn 6:51). — AMB
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Standing at the eucharist (Prairie Messenger November 2002)
If one looks up the word “kneel” in a New Testament concordance, one can find quite a few references, many of them speaking in a positive manner of the first Christians — and, indeed, of the Lord himself — kneeling in prayerful worship of God Almighty.

Yet for many centuries we have no record of the Christian community, which certainly knew its Scriptures well, kneeling at the eucharist. Indeed, church leaders and theologians went so far as to say it was a sin for a Christian to kneel at the eucharist. 

In the West, Augustine spoke of kneeling at the Lord’s Supper as a denial of one’s Christian dignity. It is our mystery that is placed on the altar; we, in Christ, celebrate who we are.
In the East, which normally saw things in a broader perspective, the act of kneeling at the eucharist was deemed a denial of the Lord’s resurrection; you cannot sing “Alleluia” on your knees. Thus St. Basil went so far as to declare it a mortal sin to kneel publicly during the Fifty Days of Easter or during the eucharistic prayer.

When suddenly, with the Peace of Constantine, the Christian community was able to come “above ground,” they spontaneously did something unheard in the ancient world: they constructed their places of worship without an explicit god-symbol. They saw themselves, assembled in Christ’s name, as his living presence. No wonder they could not kneel.

We know, however, that before the first millenium had run its course, the laity were beginning, here and there — but not for many more centuries in Rome’s major basilicas — to kneel at the eucharist.

Something quite revolutionary had to have taken place for the church to change a universal tradition — indeed, one that its great church fathers had deemed could be broken only under pain of sin. As kneeling is once more being explicitly promoted as the preferred posture for the laity at mass, it is important to study carefully what led the church to make a 180° turnaround.

Much of it had to do with the development of the theology of the ministerial priesthood. Greatly influenced by the wave of pagan priests who saw the writing on the wall with the Peace of Constantine and “converted” to the new religion, the developing theology of the priesthood emphasized the eucharist as sacrifice and that only sacred people could carry out the required rituals.

The priest became the active agent in the liturgy, doing sacred things for the laity who assumed a passive role. If those in authority (now all clerics) did not see the priest as the only truly active agent, they would never have allowed the central act of worship to be conducted in silence in a language unknown to the People of God.

Little bells were rung three times during the liturgy, encouraging the laity to take note what the priest was doing at that moment. The rest of the time they were to be gainfully occupied with their own private devotions.

A large crucifix was hung over the priest’s head, giving the laity something worthy of their attention during the mass. The highlight of the mass was the elevation of the host, which the priest with the sacred power given him in ordination had changed into the Body of Christ. There was virtually no connection any longer between the consecrated host and the faithful assembled in community.

Indeed, the split had become so great that even the vessels on the altar were deemed so holy it was a sin for an “unconsecrated” lay person to purposely touch them. And, of course, the very sanctuary (cut off from the assembly by the communion rail) was so holy that it was a sin for a woman to enter it during the liturgy.

The Body of Christ no longer had any relationship to what the laity were. It was what they received. And, as the final putdown, they received it not in the hand so that they could feed themselves, as would any adult, but rather in the manner in which parents feed their children — directly into the mouth.

When this process of change was complete — it took several centuries — the church had turned itself inside out. Priests no longer drew their liturgical power by gathering the faith of the community. (St. Augustine once said that in the sacraments the word does not get its power by its being spoken by the priest but in its being believed by the people.) Priests no longer acted in the name of the community; they did things for the community.
The laity were no longer central to the liturgical act; they were no longer expressing their deepest meaning, thus becoming the sacrament they were celebrating. Rather, they were reduced to receivers. The most active function left to them was to look upon the host and adore. And what could be more appropriate for that than kneeling?

The Second Vatican Council and the Roman congregations in the years after the council looked carefully at all these developments that led the church to put aside its universal tradition of standing at the eucharist. Many things were changed, some quite obvious. Women were allowed to read during the liturgy, and, to the consternation of many, were allowed in the sanctuary and could be ministers of communion.

The most important change, however, was not so obvious. The laity, assembled in Christ’s name, had once again become central to the celebration. Indeed, the Vatican documents began talking about everyone actively celebrating, with the priest being the “principal celebrant.” With this shift in theology, Augustine’s and Basil’s words on standing while celebrating their own mystery made perfect sense.

Congregations overwhelmingly took to standing not because it was easier (many find it harder) but because it seemed appropriate. It fit.

The church, and especially our bishops, must look closely at why kneeling is once again being promoted as the proper posture at the eucharist. If, as many suspect, it is to reverse the theology of the laity that has come out of the council, there simply is no room for compromise. — AMB
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There is a lot above to digest but it is clear that this monk and those whom he has influenced have a view of the church that is a rupture. This is not what is envisioned in Sacrosanctam Concilium or the Third Edition of the Roman Missal or the GIRM.
What he does not tell you is that up to 1975, there was no "rubric" for the laity to kneel at all. The 1975 GIRM and the 2002 GIRM mandate kneeling at the "Consecration" as a minimum. But the GIRM recognises the "laudable practice" of particular communities and regions over decades, centuries even to maintain the practice which they have developed. He is contradicting himself. In fact, the Church is recognising the "community" in allowing this kneeling to continue.
It is the "liturgists," nuns and monks and priests confused over their own vocations and obviously, their sexuality who have wreaked havoc on the people of God whom they desire to empower. They are like the manager to whom Our LORD parables, too proud to beg, too old to work.

They are the worst form of clericalists. They are always right and the laity loyal to our Holy Mother, the Church are wrong.

They have left no progeny to take up their dissent. They are old, sick and dying, the bishops whom they have influenced are gaining in age and in ten years will be nearing or past retirement.

Last Sunday, I met a 16 year old who desires to be a priest and on Tuesday, I had dinner with a Deacon to be ordained in May, the future is in good hands.

The LORD has not abandoned His Church.