Rorate Caeli

Will the Pope celebrate a Traditional Mass on December 2?


Maybe, it is rumored. Luigi Accattoli, Vaticanist of Italy's largest newspaper, Corriere della Sera, reports today:

Luigi Accattoli

CITTÀ DEL VATICANO— ... [T]he nomination of the new "Master of Ceremonies" is expected for the next few days, in substitution of Archbishop Piero Marini. After the arrival of the new cerimoniere, it is "probable" that the Pope will celebrate a Mass in the old rite, in Saint Peter's, obviously entirely in Latin: it could take place on December 2, First Sunday in Advent.

If that celebration truly happens, the passage of power between the current and the future "Master of Ceremonies" will have a generational and symbolical significance, for a Pope has not celebrated with the old Missal for over forty years: for a traditional "Papal Mass", it is necessary to move back to before 1965, the closing year of the Second Vatican Council, when Paul VI introduced the first changes.

It is said that the new "Master" is another Marini, in his last name, his first name being Guido, a Genoese priest up to now unknown in Rome. It is said that he was presented to the Pope by Cardinal Bertone, who esteems him [after] having had him as cerimoniere in Genoa. Nothing is known about his position regarding the old Missal, but it is supposed that he would be more favorable to it than the Marini currently in charge, who is a passionate supporter of the liturgical reform.

Nothing precise is known of the intention of the Pope to give to the bishops an "example" of spontaneous use of the old rite - other than through granting of the demands of the faithful (as the motu proprio [Summorum Pontificum] which he published in July foresees). The rumor comes from the lips of those who hope that gesture and who say that it would definitively "disencumber" the old Missal, which still faces resistances, despite the recent "liberalization", as well as from those who fear that the Pope may accomplish this gesture, because it would be "another step away from the Council".

"It is only a rumor for the moment - says a monsignore who is neither favorable nor opposed to it -, but everyone talks about it here [in the Vatican], and I believe that he will do it even if he risks raising controversy, because Catholics who are under fifty have never seen a Pope celebrate with his back turned to the people and pronouncing the 'Eucharistic prayer' sottovoce. In the meantime, the 'court' that accompanied the Pontiff in the celebrations has been abolished and I would really like to see how the old Papal Mass would be carried out today!"

...

The new Marini and Vian [new director of L'Osservatore Romano] will assume their offices after October 21: on that day, the Pope will be visiting Naples, and that will be the last public occasion for Mario Agnes ... and Marini senior.
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Source: Corriere della Sera; Transcript: Papa Ratzinger Blog.
In the picture: Pope Saint Pius X celebrates Mass at the Altar of the Cathedra, in the apse of Saint Peter's.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Obviously Luigi Accattoli has never seen papal Mass either! A pope when celebrating will still appear to be facing the people due to the orientation of the altar at St. Peters. Let's see if Benedict XVI uses all of the prescribed rubrics for a Mass of the Roman Pontiff (if and when he ever uses the old rite of Mass).

Travis said...

I would like to see the Holy Father do a mass in the old rite. It would show his personal support for the rite, beyond just allowing it.

Hebdomadary said...

I don't want to be a wet blanket, but I have discussed this possibility much with friends of a liturgical bent, as well as its implications. One must realize that a mass said by the Pope (as it stands), and "The Papal Mass" are two entirely different things. The Papal Mass requires a contingent of liturgically competent Cardinals to fill the roles. I myself am hardly even competent to discuss the particulars, but the question is, does this Pope have the liturgical "crew" of Cardinals necessary to accurately achieve this massive liturgical event; and secondly, can a Pope who has not been crowned, say the Papal mass, since the use of the Tiara is involved. Thirdly, is there precedent for a Pope, being Bishop of a Diocese, to - for example - simply say a regular Pontifical High mass at the Throne in his own Cathedral, which in this case would be St. John Lateran. The last possibility would, under the circumstances, perhaps be the most efficacious in advancing the use of the rite in its rediscovery phase, and the most encouraging to other Bishops. Perhaps this is what the Holy Father has in mind, since the other Bishops want him to concern himself with being a "Brother Bishop" in his own diocese. After passing that phase, and setting the most salubrious example, perhaps then the Papal Mass come into sight. I suspect we will find out.

Az said...

Probably any papal celebration of the old rite may resemble those of Paul VI in the mid-late 60s, i.e. with full cut vestments, crosier, and no tiara, fanon etc.

alsaticus said...

the suggestions of Hebdomadary are very wise, the Bishop of Rome acting as such and setting the example for the others.

The resurrection of "papal Masses" like under s. Pius X or before is indeed hardly possible.
I've always read that Pius XII already had shortened/simplified the ritual but ...

John said...

FOR THE HOLY FATHER TO SAY A HIGH MASS IN ST. PETER'S BASILICA AFTER AN ABSENCE OF 0VER 40 YEARS WOULD BE ABSOLUTELY AWESOME. WITH THE DEPARTURE OF THE FORMER PAPAL MC (WHO WAS QUITE HOSTILE TO THE CLASSIC LATIN MASS), AT LEAST IN PUBLIC, HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS AROUND THE WORLD WOULD BE GLUED TO THEIR TELEVISIONS TRANSFIXED AT THE BEAUTY THAT WAS AND IS THE ANCIENT LATIN DIVINE LITURGY. LIKE SO MANY OTHERS I AND I KNOW OF MORE THAN A FEW LAPSED AKA FALLEN AWAY CATHOLIC WHO ARE RETURNING HOME AFTER A STERILE JOURNEY THROUGH PROTESTANTISM. THE ANCIENT LITURGY CODIFIED AT THE GREAT COUNCIL OF TRENT HAS RETURNED HOME TO IT'S PROPER PLACE OF HONOUR.YOUTH AROUND THE WORLD ARE ASTOUNDED BY IT AND LOVE IT. IF YOU CAN'T SEE THE SPIRIT OF G-D WORKING THROUGH THIS PONTIFF THEN YOU HAVE TO BE BLIND, DEAF AND MUTE. HETERODOXY IS ON THE DECLINE IN CATHOLIC CHRISTENDOM AS THE PATRIARCH OF THE WEST CONSECRATES MORE AND MORE ORTHODOX YOUNG BISHOPS AND THEY IN TURN MORE AND MORE ORTHODOX YOUNG CATHOLIC PRIESTS, MONKS & NUNS. SHALOM HOLY FATHER BENEDICT 16TH.

Anonymous said...

I guess not.