12 June 2011

The state of modern Catholic liturgy

From a recent Ordinariate ordination Mass
at Westminster Cathedral.



  1. Do I really see a nose-pick on the left?


  2. You ought to see what the congregation does when you're standing at the altar looking at them during a Tridentine Mass. Eyes wandering, old ladies fingering their beads, others gazing at the mosaics and stained glass windows, and others asleep. Just about everything other than paying attention to the "sublime mysteries" and the whispered mumblings of the celebrant in his lace dress and fiddleback chasuable.

    The novelty of this Tridentine venture will wear off very quickly (I'd say in about 10 years), and you'll see a return to a very radically reformed Novus Ordo Mass using English and Latin, lots of smells and bells, with communion under both forms, maybe using the Tridentine prayers at the foot of the altar in place of Paul VI's disappointing opening rite, and very definitely using a 3 year lectionary, but with a much better selection of OT lessons more carefully chosen to reflect the theme of the Mass than we have at the present. Provision will be made for concelebration, but probably not with priests by the hundreds. Like a bunch of extras at a Cecil B. DeMille blockbuster film.

  3. Anonymous,

    I have higher degrees in Latin, and I still say the rosary at Mass all the time. Saints profitably heard Mass by praying the rosary. If saying the rosary at Mass won the saints crowns of everlasting life, then the rosary at Mass must be good enough for me also.

    Devotional prayer at Mass has sanctified souls for centuries. Don't dismiss the rosary by trotting out the "old lady" stereotype.

  4. A particular aesthetic thing of mine: priests who let the Roman collar or the collar of their shirts show over the top of the alb.

    The new Master of the Dominican Order does a similar thing, with his shirt collar always showing under his habit.


  5. Point taken! Will try to do better and cover up.

  6. If saying the rosary at Mass won the saints crowns of everlasting life, then the rosary at Mass must be good enough for me also.
    First, you have no way of knowing if the rosary won them anything of the sort. Second, saying the rosary during Mass is the height of rudeness and an insult to the priest offering the Mass.

    To be rattling off your beads during the celebration of this supposedly " greatest event this side of Heaven", tells us where your priorities lie. Higher degrees in liturgy and theology might have helped you in ascertaining which is more important, the Holy Eucharist or the rosary.

  7. Additionally, the shirt collar issue could be easily solved if clergy would wear the proper attire . . . amice + alb. Not just the ever tacky cassock-alb.

    Thank God for the Anglican Ordinariate.

    Vivat, Papa Benedictus!

  8. Anonymous,

    Who knows the Son better? A eminent liturgist, or the new Eve full of grace whose womb formed the first tabernacle of our Lord?

    Who is more knowledgeable about the Holy Sacrifice? A Catholic theologian emeritus who has analyzed scripture to the particle, or the Mother of God who intimately understood the suffering of her Son broken for our salvation?

    Any shred of human knowledge alone cannot instruct me in the mystery of the altar. Our Lady's example is a better path to the Cross than the delusion of self-importance. We are all δουλοῖ before the Holy Sacrifice. Why should my servitude before the altar under the guidance of Our Lady hinder your servitude at the altar as alter Christus?

    Thank you Pimpernel for the space to speak my mind. That's all I need to say.

  9. The Sacred Liturgy should be the center of a Catholic life. Since the change of the Liturgy, we lost many many Catholics, the faith is gone, inpious dress at Church. Lack of reverence starts at the Sanctuary where the holy should be. The state of the Liturgy is very and very upseting. It goes from altar girls swinging incense in the Sanctuary to priests washing the feet of women. The music, the music oh, the musice is awfully poor and hard to hear. I wish there was no music at all. Oh, how I wish the Church would repent and come back to worship our God the way He deserves.