Rorate Caeli

We thank the reader who sent us this confusing Reuters dispatch (Vatican: We may drop revived prayer offensive to Jews), but details of what Cardinal Bertone would have exactly said in the press conference regarding this question do not seem absolutely clear.

Italian news agency Apcom reports that the Cardinal said: "It is true, one prays for the conversion of the Jews in the Missal of 1962... but the problem could be studied and it could be established that all say the formula approved by Paul VI".

Bertone added that, "The observance of the motu proprio would solve all problems" [this would also have been said by the Cardinal, according to the several news agencies, regarding the words of Art. 2 of Summorum Pontificum, which forbids "private masses" for both forms of the Roman Rite in the Sacred Triduum - though, as has been made clear elsewhere, not "public celebrations"]. It does seem that the Cardinal wisely wished to defuse the question with this answer.

The exact unabridged words of the Cardinal on the press conference granted in Lorenzago di Cadore today do not seem to be available.

UPDATE (1200 GMT): The exact question to Cardinal Bertone regarding this matter and his answer were made available today. They reinforce our view that the Cardinal simply wished to defuse an uncomfortable question, and did it wisely.

There has been a great debate regarding the Motu proprio on the Tridentine Mass. How do you see the reactions of the Jews, who feel offended because it still contains an invitation to their conversion?

[Bertone:] The Jews, as John Paul II said, remain our older brothers. In the first [sic] Canon of that Mass, "our Father Abraham, father in the faith, and the High Priest Melchisedech" [sic] are invoked. I know of many rabbis who are glad about this. The formula regarding the Jews? The word 'perfidious' has already been removed. The problem of the "conversion" may be solved with a decision valid for all. For instance, using the formula of the liturgy for Holy Friday of Paul VI. Moreover, every priest may choose between the Tridentine Missal and that of Paul VI in the triduum of Holy Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. It is also fair to value the richness and beauty of the Latin language. Did you know that in China hundreds of universities have asked the Salesians [to provide] Latin instructors?
Source: Repubblica; Transcript: Papa Ratzinger.