Friday, November 10, 2006

LitAuth and the anticipated indult

Readers of this blog may recall the 2001 document Liturgiam authenticam which stressed the need to preserve the unity of the Roman Rite by ensuring that translations from original languages (Latin, Hebrew, etc.) to vernaculars were as accurate as possible while still maintaining some semblance of “working” with the language. We all, I am sure, know of the squabble caused by this document, which flew in the face of how so many had interpreted “participatio actuosa”. Some of you may have read Peter Jeffery’s informative (but largely off-topic, IMO) critique of the document. And we probably all are aware of the new Missal translation (and with it, new Lectionary etc.) coming down the pipe as a result.

So, after AALLLL this hullabaloo, has anyone else looked at the anticipated liberalization of the 1962 Missal and seen something like a de facto fracture in the Roman Rite, the very kind of thing for which SO many have spent so many words anguishing?

That being said, assuming the indult is a complete, always-and-everywhere license to use the old Missal, it at least would be a fracture with stringent restrictions, as opposed to the pre-LitAuth translational scheme which basically permitted any kind of text deviations one justified as meeting the people’s need for a liturgical language to which they could relate.

4 Comments:

At Saturday, November 11, 2006 9:20:00 AM, Blogger Gavin said...

"has anyone else looked at the anticipated liberalization of the 1962 Missal and seen something like a de facto fracture in the Roman Rite"

Yes indeed. What I don't get is the people insisting that bringing it back (assuming it would go back) is going to further the "reform of the reform". The best excuse for this that I saw was someone on NLM (of course) saying that bringing back the 1962 would result in the 1962 getting more modern and the Novus getting more traditional, until they're both the same Mass. So gee golly, I guess with all the clown Masses he was doing, Pope Paul VI forgot how the Tridentine Mass went when he wrote the NO!

And I raised the point of "are there actually any priests out there that were planning to do a Tridentine Mass on Sunday [after the "saturday release" of the motu]?)" Several people said yes. I have to ask, WHY???! Isn't a reverent Novus good enough? Of course a reverent novus would drive away half the congregation, but a Tridentine Mass would get rid of ALL those pesky people getting in the way of the priest having the rite he likes!

Then again, maybe I would be less angry about the issue if I stopped reading NLM :P

 
At Saturday, November 11, 2006 7:05:00 PM, Anonymous Tony said...

Then again, maybe I would be less angry about the issue if I stopped reading NLM :P

Might be good for you. Whenever I read NLM, I don't see any kind of "newness". I see a pining for "oldness". I liken it to a bunch of old codgers on the porch of the general store harping about how society has gone to hell in a handbasket and how things were better in the "good ol' days".

I like reminiscing about the "good ol' days" too, but I don't obsess about it.

People complain that they don't have a universal indult to celebrate the TLM, but every single priest can celebrate the Novus Ordo in Latin without an indult. They can celebrate it as reverently as they like, can mandate reception on the tongue and on the knees (reception in the hand is an indult). They could allow only chant and plainsong in their parish.

But they don't. I always wondered why not.

It's probably like you say, the people might be driven off. So between:

1. Bishops who forbid the rite in their diocese (this will still be an option I hear).

2. Priests who neither know how to, nor have an inclination to celebrate the TLM.

3. People who simply will not worship that way.

I don't see things changing substantially from before to after a "universal indult".

 
At Sunday, November 12, 2006 1:49:00 PM, Blogger Jeffrey Tucker said...

I too worry that the downside of a universal indult will be that it could entrench the current situation in the new rite. One can imagine that a pastor might feel justified in telling anyone who wants chant or Latin to "go to the old rite," and be done with it. Old rite: Latin. New rite: English with mod music. Might that become the popular understanding, so much so that it would never change?

This is a real concern. But some report I read about the B16 solution seems to find a workaround to the regrettable situation. The report said that the indult would say that there is only one Roman Rite with many different forms, among which are the older missals and the new missal. This sounds like an ingenious solution to me that would foster more borrowing from form to form, hopefully from old to new. It would also finally clear up the ongoing confusion about what is the Roman Rite.

No question that the situation is delicate. How awful to think that a universal indult could have the opposite effect that the most desirable one. Surely not.

 
At Tuesday, November 14, 2006 10:28:00 AM, Blogger Todd said...

"This sounds like an ingenious solution to me that would foster more borrowing from form to form, hopefully from old to new."

In the hands of Benedict, perhaps. But in the hands of your average parish priest, not likely.

Vatican II outlined the problems of the 1570 Rite. It charted a course for renewal and reform. The 1962 Missal largely ignores its prescriptions.

A wider use of the 1962 Rite would water down its presentation. Today Latin Mass devotees have something of an ideal situation in that local resources of music and clergy need not be stretched thin to provide prayerfulness/sentimentality to those who desire it. Any ol' priest can say the 1962 Mass? That should bring the average quality back to a level meriting further reform.

"How awful to think that a universal indult could have the opposite effect that the most desirable one."

File it under the heading, "Be careful what you wish for ..."

 

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