Friday, July 13, 2007

Local Reactions to the Motu Proprio

Roman and I had a conversation last night as to the reaction generally around the Brisbane archdiocese about the Motu Proprio. To date the only reactions I have personally found is from older parishioners (ie. 60yo and above which is probably the majority of the practicing Catholic population), saying things like that "the Pope wants us to go back to the old Mass that we grew up with" - of course incorrect.

The small amount of "official" correspondence contains no surprises, given the ideological backgrounds of the self appointed people managing liturgical issues. Fr Tom Elich in the December 2006 edition of Liturgy News came out with a number of judgements on the issue that have turned out to be totally wrong. He also sides with the French bishops who protested against the Motu Proprio (mmmm - neo "Protestants"??). Elizabeth Harrington of the Brisbane Liturgy Commission goes further in her article of 13 May and by quoting Fr Reggie Foster implies that the Pope is "stupid" for issuing such a document. The biggest criticism is that:

The Tridentine Mass has fewer readings from scripture than the current Mass, there is no Prayer of the Faithful, the Eucharistic Prayer is said in silence and the liturgy is celebrated with the priest’s back to the people.

Particularly irksome, is the same story repeated in many articles is the notion that the priest celebrating "with his back to the people" is somehow anti-social. If the liturgy is only seen as a convivial gathering of a community group (as many "authorities" on liturgy seem to imply), I suppose that is anti-social. However, that is not the reason why the liturgy exists.

Overall it is difficult to maintain any decent discussion on the liturgy with many people as much of the outlook is so infantile (particularly from older people brought up in the pre-conciliar church). Thankfully I can discuss this properly with my fellow bloggers, on this and other sites.

The next blog is about the future.


Summa Theologica said...

Ha. I love this post. Liberals make for bad conversation buddies. I love the implication. It reminds me of when me and Roman made a fella run late for a bus "you guys are so interesting to talk to he said."

It's true the Old Mass doesn't have as much scripture but I suspect a lot of the extra material from the OT goes over people's heads anyway. Just the impression that I receive.

Fr Reginald Wilson said...

Your comments about Fr Tom Elich, Elizabeth Harrington, Fr Reggie Foster and others like them are just so accurate. These people are just "dead wood" and we should leave them behing - out of the equation!

Summa Theologica said...

I wish the Archdiocese of Brisbane would leave them behind. But therein lies the problem - for now.

Stephen said...

I think that with the advent of the MP, the Brisbane Liturgy Commission is like the proverbial "kangaroo in the car headlights"!

They just do not have a monopoly on liturgy anymore.

Br Mannes.OP said...

The big issue is the language barrier and the ad orientem posture, once these factors have been clearly explained to the faithful things many of the problems would be reduced.

It is interesting that many older people never really knew why the priest faced away from them in the old mass-and this is the problem, the liturgical catechesis in many parts of the world was very poor. Most people knew the rudiments of doctrine (penny catechism theologians), but the liturgical formation was poor, thus we see the unfortuante comments from so called liturgists sych as Ms Harrington.

I think priests of the younger generation are more likely to explain these things to the people because the faithful do have the right to know these things. My suggestion would be to hold discussion nights for parishoners before omplementing any changes. If one arbitrarily imposed the old mass on a congregation you would have the same uproar and dismay as happened 40 years ago when priests more or less told the people from the pulpit that "next week the Mass will be in English!" So I think dialogue and education is the way to go here.

Br Mannes.OP

Anonymous said...

May God have mercy on the ignorant!!! The Tridentine Mass is a beautiful mass provided that it is celebrated perfectly...those ignorant to the truth and want themselves to govern what God wants to really happen, well my brothers and sisters, their souls are at stake....let us pray for their conversion and enlightenment to discover the truth and the stupidity they are spreading...
- Roman catholic girl :)