From Sunday's edition of Il Giornale, an interview of the President of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos, with Andrea Tornielli, on the main aspects of Summorum Pontificum.
What meaning does the Pope's decision have?
"The Pontiff's letter is clear. It is a decision which comes from the heart and from the mind of a Pope who loves and knows liturgy well. He wishes that the heritage represented by the ancient liturgy be preserved, without this representing any contradiction with the new Mass. Thousands of letters arrived in Rome from those who asked for the freedom to be able to participate in the old rite."
There have been those who said that Ratzinger thus "rejected" the Council...
"Benedict XVI has not walked or will walk, in any way or expression, on a path which is different from that indicated by the Council. The new Mass remains the ordinary Roman Rite. There is nothing in the motu proprio or in the papal letter which signals a minimal deviation from the Council. It may be appropriate to recall that Vatican II did not forbid the ancient Mass, which was celebrated by the Conciliar Fathers during sessions. No rejection, no offense. It is an encounter with the demands of groups of faithful, an act of liberality."
Is it an act of continuity or rupture in comparison to the Montini and Wojtyla pontificates?
"There is no contraposition. Paul VI granted the possibility to celebrate with the old rite soon after the coming into effect of the new Missal and Pope Wojtyla intended to prepare a Motu proprio similar to the one now promulgated."
Is the authority of the Bishop undermined?
"Those who have argued [so], have done so based on a prejudice, because the role of the Bishop rests assured, canon law does not change. It is the competence of the pastor of the diocese to coordinate the liturgy, in harmony with the supreme orderer, who is the Pope. In case of problems, the Bishop will intervene, always in agreement with the dispositions established by the motu proprio. I am certain that the pastoral sensibility of Bishops will find the way to favor the unity of the Church, helping to avoid a schism."
How do we deal with the Holy Friday prayer for the Jews?
"The authorized Missal is that of 1962, promulgated by John XXIII, in which the expression 'perfidis iudaeis' and 'iudaica perfidia' had already been removed."
Do you predict difficulties?
"I am not aware, in the History of the Church, of any moment in which important decisions have been taken without difficulty. But I strongly hope that they may be coped with and overcome, with the approach suggested by the Pope in his letter."
After this decision, the end of the rupture with the Lefebvrists is closer?
"With this Motu proprio, the door is widely opened [si spalanca la porta] for a return of the Fraternity of Saint Pius X to full communion. If, after this act, the return does not take place, I truly will not be able to comprehend. I wish to clarify, though, that the papal document has not been made for the Lefebvrists, but because the Pope is convinced of the need to underline that there is a continuity in the Tradition, and that in the Church one does not move forward by way of fractures. The ancient Mass has never been abolished nor forbidden." [AnTor]