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Really? LOL. Good night, Father.

Mrs. Roach

"...current thoughts and trends in Catholic culture and worship ..."

Really? Apparently they are a-changin... back.

I'll say one thing - my young children sit better and get more out of the old traditional mass than they do the song-n-dance version. They ask each Sunday to attend a mass more like what we saw at the National Shrine...


Thank you for your candor, Father: It would be hard to find a clearer example of the philistine myopia that has plagued the Church for the last 45 years.


A reminder to devotees of the Traditional liturgy: you don't make your point by being rude.

Anyway, Fr. Jan, you really need to confront and address the issue of hundreds and hundreds of years of Catholic spirituality rooted in this liturgy, of saints nourished by this liturgy, who certainly did not feel distanced or disengaged and who experienced the deepest intimacy with God during the liturgy. It is deeply un-Catholic to dismiss the "past" as you do. There is an element of the traditional liturgy,east and west, which has evolved in a way to evoke mystery and heaven and the heights of Death and Resurrection, rather than simply the perceived needs of the gathered community.

You also misread the documents of Vatican II, selectively appealing to these documents which, of course, call for chant and Latin to retain and important role in the liturgy.

Finally, you really should understand that your tone is deeply...well..offensive to the laity who, according to you, it seems, are a fairly stupid lot. It's also offensive to Eastern Christians, both Catholic and Orthodox. Would you speak of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom in this way, with its many repetitions, its iconostasis and so on? Would you or would you not?

Mr. Dunn

I find your comments condescending as well as ignorant. They show a clear lack of understanding of the theology behind the Traditional Latin Mass, which is also the normative theology of the Roman Catholic Church in general.


You must feel very threatened by the traditional Mass, Father. You might do well to reflect on why that is so rather than to lash out as you have done here.

"I find it offensive that anyone would foster the return of a rite that is immune from the fundamental principles of good liturgy annunciated by the formal teaching of Vatican II."

What is the alternative? The Ordinary Form, which all too often is celebrated such as to ignore the principles enunciate by Vatican II at the whim of the celebrant?

"Why would anyone return to a rite that virtually ignores the Hebrew Bible on Sundays and feasts"

Hardly. The Old Testament is included in both the propers and the common of the traditional Mass. Many priests reference the Old Testament frequently in their homilies. You know... the ones that, despite not being required, far more often speak of the full truth of the faith -- the difficult as well as the easy -- than those delivered by many "modern" priests. When the priests don't ignore the liturgical and canonical requirements and abdicate the responsibility to a non-cleric.

"that strictly exculdes any lay ministers"

You seem to imply this is a bad thing. Why do you feel lay ministers are more appropriate than an ordained minister during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass?

"The Church teaches that full participation is required by all"

Participation does not require use of the vocal cords, nor does use of the vocal cords ensure participation. Participation in primarily a mental activity which may, at times, be augmented by vocal responses.

"Our rites should be within the people’s power of comprehension"

Why do you insult the laity so, insinuating they are not capable of comprehending the traditional liturgy? I find this statement insulting, as should other readers who actually think about what you said. Missals with the Latin and English side-by-side are commonly available: one does not need to understand Latin to comprehend the liturgy. Yes, it requires a bit more thought. You know -- the participation you were just arguing for.

Surely, Father, nothing I have said here is new to you. What I find offensive is the manner in which you put forth these specious arguments to manipulate your readers.

David L Alexander

Hey, how about an account from someone who was there, and who isn't rude?

“There are those who would say that the Latin language is incomprehensible, therefore unsuited to the prayer of ordinary people, In cultures throughout the world, from time immemorial, the use of an arcane and uncommon language when addressing the Divine has been the norm. Even Christ on earth with His apostles prayed in Hebrew according to the Law, as they otherwise spoke Aramaic on the streets. There are those who would say that the traditional form of the Mass does not facilitate the participation of the faithful. They should have heard thousands of voices raising the roof, while singing the Gregorian chant of Credo III ...”



"Our rites should be within the people’s power of comprehension"

I comprehend it just fine, Father, and so does my 11 year old sister. Full and active participation and silence while praying the Mass with the celebrant are not mutually exclusive. If one does not know Latin, there are missals with which one can follow along; barring that, one only has to glance up at the altar to 'comprehend' that something beautiful, and holy, and unusual, and otherworldly, and important, is going on.

What is incomprehensible to me is your loathing.


Father, a suggestion that would give your comments way more teeth.... as it is, you're biting with ill-fitting dentures.

LEARN THE OLD MASS. Learn it so well you can celebrate it with precision and from memory. Learn it as an act of love of God, and celebrate it well out of love of God, because it IS an official liturgy of the Church, and one which the Church wishes to preserve and foster. You want to think with the mind of the Church with respect to Vatican II, well then, apply that same good attitude to the present mind of the Church regarding the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. Learn it and celebrate it well as an act of love.

Then your comments about how ridiculous it is would carry more weight.

It's telling that you saw only "the first part" of the Mass. You claim familiarity with it in the post-Conciliar 1960s seminary experience, the era when seminarians were being taught disdain for the 1962 Missal in anticipation of the new thing that was about to come. It is clear, then, that you claim ignorance of the Extraordinary Form of the Mass.

You mock it because you can't do it. Like a modern artist who has no drawing skills, looking up at the Sistine Chapel ceiling and saying, "Who wants to paint like that anyway?"

Most of us who prefer the older form of the Mass are painfully familiar with both the old and the new. We speak from our experience. Your experience is one-sided.

You lack credibility. Get some.

Learn to celebrate the Old Mass, as an act of love of God and the Church.

Ferde Rombola

Dear Jan, I feel it incumbent upon me to inform you, since you seem not to know, that the liberal revolution in the Catholic Church is over. You lost.

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