Tuesday, May 20, 2008


So, a lot of people talked about the liturgical "timebombs" of Vatican II, about how there were all these ambiguous bits of fluff-talk in the VII documents that were really code words for later use to help bring in clapping, clowns, balloons and teddybear Masses.

I'd like to introduce another concept for the discussion: JPII Landmines. Permissions and "clarifications" issued by his late "greatness" John Paul II that are just now coming into their own as weapons in the hands of the enemy against any possible resurgence of the Faith.

"Redemptionis Sacramentum" (On certain matters to be observed or to be avoided regarding the Most Holy Eucharist), 25th March 2004

"[47.] It is altogether laudable to maintain the noble custom by which boys or youths, customarily termed servers, provide service of the altar after the manner of acolytes, and receive catechesis regarding their function in accordance with their power of comprehension.[119] Nor should it be forgotten that a great number of sacred ministers over the course of the centuries have come from among boys such as these.[120] Associations for them, including also the participation and assistance of their parents, should be established or promoted, and in such a way greater pastoral care will be provided for the ministers. Whenever such associations are international in nature, it pertains to the competence of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments to establish them or to approve and revise their statutes.[121] Girls or women may also be admitted to this service of the altar, at the discretion of the diocesan Bishop and in observance of the established norms".

No one liked it. Lots of people looked upon the permission for altar girls as the last straw and left the Church, or gave up the fight for the Faith in despair. I know at least one Cardinal who had been trying to improve things and who never tried again after that.

But I think the usefulness to the enemy of most of JPII's obscure and unreadable stuff was to come later.

Here we have a clear case of a JPII Landmine, planted right in road, just waiting for the Trad personnel carriers to roll over it on the way to victory.

I’m sorry to learn that yesterday’s traditional High Mass at Cardiff Cathedral was called off at the last minute because the Dean insisted that a woman server be present in the sanctuary.

Llandaff Cathedral, Cardiff:
Traditionalists are not welcome in cathedrals

The Latin Mass Society cancelled the service because female altar servers are not part of the tradition of the pre-1970 Mass. Opponents of the Pope’s reintroduction of the old Mass must be delighted – what an ingenious way of throwing a spanner in the works!

Fr Tim Finigan broke the news on his excellent blog, commenting that the Vatican is going to have to sort this one out.

Personally, I’m sorry that the LMS didn’t go ahead notwithstanding the presence of the woman altar server. It’s true that the classical form of Mass makes no provision for this innovation, introduced by Pope John Paul II – but by stretching a point the society would have denied liberals the delicious pleasure of seeing the event cancelled.

For, make no mistake about it, this is not about including woman in the traditional Latin Mass: it is about excluding traditionalists from the cathedrals of England and Wales, where they are not wanted.

But hey, it's the springtime guys! Come on now, let's all clap, "JPTOOWEELOVEYOOO"