Sunday, June 15, 2008

Forcing Our Beliefs on Others

Via NLM:

Damien Thompson Tries to Get Sacked from the Catholic Herald
Latin Mass to return to England and Wales

The traditional Latin Mass – effectively banned by Rome for 40 years – is to be reintroduced into every Roman Catholic parish in England and Wales, the senior Vatican cardinal in charge of Latin liturgy said at a press conference in London today.

For some reason I am reminded of a scene recounted in one of Michael Davies' books about the Revolution. I don't remember the details well, so am open to correction, but it was some time around 1968, I think, and a parish priest with the backing of his bishop, had decided to join the crowd and "re-configure" the parish according to the (non-existent) norms of V-II. It was sad and weird. The parishioners barricaded the place when the workmen came in to break up the altar and put the table in etc. The police were called in by the bishop and arrests were made.

I also recall the story of a parish in...oh dear, was it Newfoundland? or Nova Scotia? I think the latter, when a group of parishioners refused to take up the new practice and insisted on receiving Holy Communion on the tongue while kneeling. Again, police...etc...

I can't help but wonder if the elderly be-Birkenstocked Easter People are going to put up the same kind of fight to retain the fruits of their revolution. I remember having a conversation once with an archbishop friend of mine. I mentioned the battles over reception in the hand and he shrugged, made some kind of dismissive noise and said, "As if it matters." I wish I had had the presence of mind to say at the time, "Well, the revolutionaries who forced the traditional practice out thought it mattered enough to go to the trouble of changing it and have fought like a pack of wild dogs to retain the new practice, so it seems to matter." It seemed to matter (a bit) to Pope Paul VI too who, while doing his usual thing of granting permission out of one side of his mouth and weeping and lamenting the change out of the other side, issued a plea for retaining the traditional practice.

Yeah. It doesn't matter. Right? So there should be no problem with the return of the Traditional Mass...we're all open minded nowadays right? It's the age of do your own thing right? Even if your thing happens to be the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar? We'll see.

The announcement by Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, speaking on behalf of Pope Benedict XVI, will horrify Catholic liberals, including many bishops of England and Wales, who were opposed to the Pope's decree last year removing their power to block the celebration of the old Mass.
Damien T. must really hate his day job...

Pope Benedict will reintroduce the old rite – which the Cardinal said should be known as the "Gregorian Rite" - even where the congregation has not asked for it. "People don't know about it, and therefore they don't ask for it," he explained.

I can hear it now. "You can't force your beliefs on us!" Ooooohhhh soooo familiar chant. But of course, it's just that people really aren't used to thinking like Catholics. Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité, right? But that's kind of the point isn't it? How long have we been having a non-Catholic set of ideas pushed on us and our children at Mass? And now, the screeching will no doubt begin; but think about it for a second. Actually, we can, or I should say the Pope can, and should, impose Catholic ideas on the Catholic's kind of his job, yah?

However, the new rite – in which the priest faces the people and speaks in the vernacular – will definitely not be phased out.

Hardly need to "phase" it out. It's nearly dead right now all by itself. How many of the English Catholics at our little Novus Ordo huggy fest this morning were under 60?

The Pope wishes to see the two forms of Mass existing happily side by side.


For a long time, I wondered why the Vatican did nothing about the anti-nuns and the paranuns and their slide into Marxism and paganism. But it is clear that such things have a rather short half-life and there is actually little need to do anything. A great deal of the problem is self-correcting, as we have seen.


Mark S. Abeln said...

Note that for the most part, nearly all Catholic institutions, parishes, religious orders, etc. are financed, managed, and staffed independently. An order that can't support itself dies.

What a comparison to how the worlds handles things: institutions are financed and subsidized from the highest governmental levels, and even bad schools are never allowed to fail. Dorothy Day, who was never accused of being a conservative (although she did attend the Traditional Latin Mass), was against the concept of Catholic Charities for this very reason.

Robert said...

Yes, it was Nova Scotia, not Newfoundland. Our Lady of Lourdes in Stellarton, diocese of Antigonish, 1982. The whole sorry incident, surely the nadir in the history of Maritime Catholicism, would've been forgotten had it not been immortalized in the records of the Supreme Court of Canada. The detached amusement of the judges as they explain why the devout Catholics of Stellarton are not criminals is reminiscent of Pilate.