Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Reform of the Reform or Reversal of the Reform?

The blog Rorate Caeli is always a source of thought provoking reading matter, and there is a very interesting article on it about the future direction of the movement for a "Reform of the Reform" of the liturgy. It is well worth reading and reflecting upon, and can be read at The End of the “Reform of the Reform”:Father Kocik’s "Tract 90".

It will be interesting if this fuels debate, and if so hopefully in a positive way, and not in the rather depressing or angry way in which the perfectly good case for restoration is sometimes made. Has the process of reform reached its natural limit? Does its message still need to reach many parishes? Hoew practicable or possible is a reversal of the reform? can the Church accomodate such movements in tranquility? These and other questions immediately arise, and are important ones.

Liturgical reform or liturgical restoration is a vital topic for many and, as we know, often divisive. Let us hope that discussion will be positive and informed as this issue continues its course in the life of the Church.


Chris said...

The summary of the article is that the reformed rite, not only including the mass but the divine office (liturgy of the hours) and all accompanying ritual books (blessing of salt, exorcisms) has been pruned and altered to such drastic extent that it becomes mutilation. The only sensible alternative is to revert back to the 1965 books, the REAL liturgy of Vatican II - A tridentine liturgy. This was the first edition of the Roman rite to be allowed in the many languages besides latin and the last to still be purely tridentine, with only a handful of simplifications. The 1965 books always had latin and vernacular on every other page. Unlike the 1962 books, that vernacular text was intended to be sung aloud as a liturgical language, not simply read in order understand what the latin ment. (Though it can still be used that way as well.)

I the last year I have looked carefully comparing both the 1965 and 1962 missal and divine office books. I can hardly find any differences, except that the '65 have a non-latin languages side by side with latin.

This is really the only conclusion to bring unity while simultaneously regaining holy tradition within the Catholic Church. It's the only remotely feasable way to unite various factions.

It's the only thing that both the Orthodox Churches and the SSPX would support in order to be fully comfortable that the Catholic Church is what it claims to be. Without something like this, the Latin Catholic Church will continue as a deeply wounded divided Church.

Chris said...

If one compares a 1965 Mass mostly in german (or english) for example, to a 1962 Mass entirely in latin - the actions, prayers and rubrics and calendar of both '62 and '65, they line up exactly. All things being equal, they are the same liturgy. Both can be entirely in latin if desired, or one could be partially or entirely in another language. Everything becomes consistent, at least according to the books and official laws.

Whether a "confused" or rebellious cleric may choose to go against those uniform canons and laws is not known. If one did, at least they would know with certainty that they are going against the law and likely would not be able to continue for long.