Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Good reading on Catholic Identity, the Novus Ordo and Latin Rite




Dr. Boyd makes some observations that I would think would be non-controversial. For example:

Comparisons of the new Mass with the old Mass show that some theological strengths of the former became crippled, or even non-existent, in the latter. For example, the centrality of the Holy Trinity in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which can be clearly seen in the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, is diluted in the new Mass where the prayers of the liturgy seem to have been systematically edited to omit or alter references to the Holy Trinity. The Preface of the Holy Trinity is seldom used in the liturgies most often experienced by the faithful today; the use of the sign of the Cross has been reduced; and the use of the “Gloria Patri” or the “Glory be” has been purged from the liturgy. Also, the rubrics for cleansing the vessels are much less detailed in the new Mass, reflecting (and perpetuating) a decline in reverence for the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharistic species.

There are other changes and omissions that have struck me as detracting from Catholic identity. We’ve lost the Asperges, for instance, which is a very apt preparation for Mass in that it reminds us of our sinfulness and of God’s mercy in cleansing us of that sin. In fact, throughout the prayers of the Mass of the extraordinary form, one can find this constant reminder of the tension between our sin and the mercy of the Father. Of course, in the liturgy celebrated in most parishes, there is an opportunity to examine and confess our sins in a meaningful way. But the problem is that the flagrant disregard for the norms, set forth in the GIRM, has so marred the new Mass that the differences between it, and the extraordinary form, are exacerbated.

There are other differences between the two forms which are not abuses, but which bring the current liturgy down to a more “human” level, whereas the older prayers raise our minds and hearts to Heaven. For instance, in the ordinary form of the Mass, we find this offertory prayer:

“Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation. Through your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us the bread of life.”

But in the extraordinary form, the prayer is much richer:

“Accept, O Holy Father, Almighty and Everlasting God, this unspotted Host, which I, Thine unworthy servant, offer unto Thee, my living and true God, to atone for my countless sins, offenses, and negligences: on behalf of all here present and likewise for all faithful Christians, living and dead, that it may avail both me and them as a means of salvation, unto life everlasting.”

Yet, I was astounded to read the first few comments on her post.

The first gentleman wrote:

I am 75 years old, I experienced liturgy in Latin before Vatican II. I do not want to go back to praying the rosary while the priest said the Mass in Latin with his back to us. I do not want to go back to the 15 minute masses with one alter boy.



Why on earth would anyone have to pray the Rosary at Mass while the priest 'said' the Mass in Latin 'with his back to us'?

If he were deaf he would know what the priest is saying and doing and have the ability to follow along in prayer!

More importantly, the priest isn't 'saying' a Mass. The priest is PRAYING and offering himself in Sacrifice where we can be literally in Christ's presence at what took place over 2000 years ago.

The English translation of what the priest is praying and doing is available. We pray the Mass along with the priest. True, he may be a little ahead of us or behind us, but it is not off my much. Even if we are incapable of catching a word here and there to know where he is (which I find hard to believe) we know the Mass and gestures and we can slow down or speed up to the priest.


I love the Novus Ordo because Christ lays down His Life before me and I can draw the Sacred Properties of Divinity from the precious gift of His Sacrifice. But as I have repeated here many times before, when it comes to praying the Mass and drawing Sanctifying Grace, the Latin Rite is a much more powerful and intimate connection with Christ.

Mystically praying the Novus Ordo is so much harder. The prayers in the Novus Ordo have been watered down to pablum. We say them rote. I couldn’t count the number of times I mouthed the words and did I was supposed to do to ‘actively participate in the Mass” but in my head, I was thinking about work or family or something else going on. At a Novus Ordo, it is work to mystically connect with what is going down in the Sanctuary. I have been practicing so long it would take an atomic bomb going off to disconnect me once the Canon starts but truth be told, I still find myself wandering away from time to time outside of the Canon.

Most people in the NO community are present and going through the motions but their head are checked out to somewhere else. Most do not even know what is going on mystically. I bet 5% are placing themselves into the mystical prayer of being present from the Praetorium to the Resurrection. They are not in the upper room. They are not at Golgotha. They are not at the tomb after the resurrection.

Daily Mass is different - everyone there is connecting. But on Sunday, I suspect it is so rare that priests notice when someone is in the pew and connected to what's going on.

On more than one occasion when I've been a guest at a parish and spoken to the priest after Mass, they've said something that conveys "I saw you and you stuck out like a sore thumb and I wondered what planet you dropped in from". Not in a mean way, but conveying their curiosity. I was taken back the first few times they innocently said it. It's not like I do anything out of the ordinary. In fact, at the Canon, I try to sink out of sight by bending forward toward the pew in front of me and lowering my face into folded hands.

My point here is, there is a lot of mindless going through the motions and gestures at the Novus Ordo and there is no way for that to happen at the Latin Mass. The prayers knock your socks off as you read them as the priest is saying the Mass. There is no need or reason for anyone to have to 'pray the Rosary while the priest is praying the Sacred Liturgy.


The second comment was the old chestnut that Catholics who attend TLM are miserable.

Look, there is nobody more dour and miserable than the feminazis who take over every ministry in the Novus Ordo parish and put the squeezola on the testosterone of the assigned priests. They are the reason two generations of children have been deprived of Church teaching. Give us a break!



9 comments:

Theresa said...

I can still remember the day my mom told us that we wouldn't be using our St Joseph's missal any longer....I was very sad and confused. I certainly wasn't one of the great intellects of our time but I had no difficulty following and praying the mass ...we understood that the priest was in Persona Christie and not MacNamara the leader of the band. We also knew without difficulty that we were all facing in the same direction toward Christ and heaven. Once the Motu Proprio was released I found the Latin Mass in Newton .....believe me it was a deeply moving experience to receive Our Lord kneeling and on the tongue for the first time in fifty some odd years ....the reality is the Novus Ordo is Protestant and the Extrodinary Form is Catholic and no amount of whitewashing can change that fact. God Bless Pope BVXI...we are forever grateful.

Anonymous said...

"My point here is, there is a lot of mindless going through the motions and gestures at the Novus Ordo and there is no way for that to happen at the Latin Mass."

No way? Yes way. Were the NO to be abolished tomorrow, you'd find plenty of people still immersed in their daily concerns while attending the preconciliar rite of the Holy Mass. Whatever the default liturgy of the Church is will be vulnerable to that.

'DIS & 'DAT said...

Excellent. Language does matter, not so much the origin, but it's use; it's style; it's substance.

If Pope Francis were to have a vision and suddenly decided to change his ways the first thing I would hope is that he abolish the New Ordo Mass and return to the 1962 version but allowing it to be said in either English or Latin.

The other thing he would need to abolish is the Vatican II music. Sacred music would only be allowed at one High Mass on Sunday and be accompanied the choir.

After making these declarations amid some sort of penitential ceremony, which would take about 15 minutes, he would then spend his time abolishing mostly everything that has happened over the last 50 years. Pope Francis would be very busy and wouldn't time to embarrass himself with such politico/religio nonsense such as "climate change". Everyone already knows the climate changes. This is ridiculous.

Michael Dowd

TTC said...

I don't frequent the Latin Rite often enough to be certain, so you may be right that it happens there as well. To me, the prayers are so intense and beautiful, I drink them up!

Anonymous said...

With regards to visiting a parish, I recently was in California and after Mass I said hello to the priest (who was the pastor) and gave him greetings from Boston. His response, in a very theatrical manner was, "Oh, you must be the rich man from Newbury Street." And then he followed that up with, "You know, it's pronounced La Hoya, not La Joyla". I stood there thinking what was wrong with this man. I thanked him and then went on my way.

Further, at this particular parish, they altar boy did not ring the Sanctus Bells when the host and chalice were held high. I know it's not required, but when it's not done, it feels as if something holy and solemn is missing from the Mass. But all that mattered was that the Holy Trinity was there.

Strongheart said...

I pray with my old latin missal all the rituals of the old mass during Novus Ordo Mass. It is easy during the weekly masses to be concentrated on the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, but it is harder on Sunday mass. Unfortunatly, the closest traditional latin mass is more than one hour drive away. It is when I go to TLM that I feel the energy to endure some NO masses for a while. My bishop has theological reasons to oppose TLM so our diocese is the last who do not have yet TLM in a Church. Dioc├Ęses around do.

Jay Boyd said...

Thanks for mentioning my article, and for addressing those comments! I was so appalled by them, I was left speechless, and decided not to bother to "debate" them.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dr Boyd

It would help if your first sentence sue of words "former" and "latter" also indicated the order of the Masses used in your sentence. So i would suggest putting the old Mass first so that the word "former" also fit the order in sentence as well as in history. I just got confused. But thanks for your VERY IMPORTANT article.

Michael Davitt said...

"My point here is, there is a lot of mindless going through the motions and gestures at the Novus Ordo and there is no way for that to happen at the Latin Mass. The prayers knock your socks off as you read them as the priest is saying the Mass. There is no need or reason for anyone to have to 'pray the Rosary while the priest is praying the Sacred Liturgy.


The second comment was the old chestnut that Catholics who attend TLM are miserable.

Look, there is nobody more dour and miserable than the feminazis who take over every ministry in the Novus Ordo parish and put the squeezola on the testosterone of the assigned priests. They are the reason two generations of children have been deprived of Church teaching. Give us a break!"


As someone who has attended TLM since 1991, thank you for your comments.