The Motu Proprio–Rocco Reports

Rocco Palmo has received and digested–and now reports on–the Motu Proprio.

It is, he says, “a decisive compromise.” Benedict expresses his frustration with all the speculation over the last many months, on all sides.

As stated in recent reports, the pope says the old mass was “never abrogated,” and that it will continue as an “extraordinary” form of the “one Roman Rite.” A priest doesn’t have to request permission to celebrate it privately, and those lay members “who spontaneously request” to attend may do so. Where there is a strong desire in a parish for a public celebration, pastors should “willingly” accommodate, but there should be no more than one such mass a Sunday. The bishop’s role is to be “watchful that all is done in peace and serenity.” (He doesn’t have to approve?)

Here’s the guiding principle:

In the history of the liturgy there is growth and progress, but no rupture. What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place.

Read the rest at Rocco’s–or wait for Saturday. Canonists and liturgists will all soon be adding their comments.

There should be no great surprises here for those who have read Ratzinger’s theological works. This is the “hermeneutic of continuity” in action. In the church’s history there is “growth and progress, but no rupture. What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too.”

And there should be broader implications for areas other than liturgy.

7 thoughts on “The Motu Proprio–Rocco Reports

  1. No parish should be offering the older version of the Roman Rite before they offer masses in the current Roman Rite in English and Spanish.

  2. There aren’t many Hispanics in Alaska or Vermont. Some. Not many. And not all of them would demand mass in Spanish, any more than all Irish would demand it in Gaelige.

    But the pluralism of languages to which you refer is one reason why many urge the celebration of the mass in Latin (whether the old rite or the new)–it is a sign of the unity of the church, and is a more appropriate response to this, they would argue, than chopping one celebration of the mass up into multiple languages (as I’ve seen done many times, either English/Spanish or English/Spanish/Vietnamese).

  3. You are right, my concern, however, is more with making immigrants welcome and providing them with spiritual succor rather than accomidating middle-class nostalgia. Using Latin to unify people is a good idea, the present Roman rite is fine just clip the narcissistic priests who make it more about them rather than our Lord. There are many reasons why people will not like the MP, you have made yours clear through this blog and they are all good, right reasons. I just want to highlight other issues. I am not against the older rite I just think that we have so much work to do with the newer Roman rite and so many other issues, preaching for example, when is the last time someone came to Mass to hear good quality preaching, you know how I feel about that.

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