|Summorum is "implemented" in Buenos Aires |
- it says so right here in my travel guide!
Wow, people who know nothing of the Argentine situation suddenly know a lot. It really is not enough to know what dulce de leche is or that it is the land of the tango to be aware of what goes on in Buenos Aires. And some are spreading disinformation about a diocese they do not even know! Unbelievable. But let us go back to facts not from gringos but from our porteño correspondents who know, live and suffer them.
First, we never said that Summorum had not been applied anywhere in Argentina. Cardinal Bergoglio was not the only Bishop of the whole of Argentina, but the Archbishop of Buenos Aires. Naturally, his powers were limited to the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, which is territorially very small, limited to the area of the Federal Capital itself*** - and, even then, not in the churches of the Military Ordinariate, as in all countries. So what happened there that prompted us to say that the application of Summorum in that archdiocese was "non-existent" and Marcelo González to speak that, "a sworn enemy of the Traditional Mass, he has only allowed imitations of it in the hands of declared enemies of the ancient liturgy"?
Ah, say the Google-searchers whose only experience of Argentina was watching Evita in one of their Broadway trips, he "allowed" a Summorum mass immediately after it went into effect: there it is, in this Clarín report - sent by many readers and posted by many... Well, under Summorum, a bishop does not "allow" or "implement" anything - that was the Ecclesia Dei regimen. Naturally, under Ecclesia Dei, nothing was "allowed" in Buenos Aires, even though Argentina has the largest traditional Catholic community in South America. Anyway, under Summorum, a place was designated by the Archdiocese in the church of San Miguel Arcángel.
Quite a relief, right? As a matter of fact, that was just the beginning of the problems. The Mass was celebrated only on the Fourth Sunday of each month in the crypt of the church of San Miguel Arcángel. And more, as reported in 2010 by Página Católica, a most trusted blog on Argentine Catholic affairs that has been in our blogroll since its beginning:
[C]ontrary to what common sense dictates and Ecclesia Dei clarified, Father Dotro [the "chaplain" for the Traditional Mass specifically chosen by Abp. Bergoglio] follows the calendar of the Ordinary Form, reading, therefore, the lessons of this form. But, as he does not limit himself to this innovation, he does not read them, but has them read by the faithful. The modified Mass is therefore left without the Epistle, Gradual, or Gospel.As informed by the media [as informed above by the Clarin article], on September 16, 2007, the first day in which it was celebrated by who would soon be the Chaplain of the traditionalists, some one hundred people filled the Crypt of San Miguel. [...] From the one hundred people who were present in the Mass on the first day, not more than two or three are left... Once a month! Because liturgical "modernism" is not in the interest of the faithful who adhere to tradition. For that, it is enough, and more [than enough], the number of parishes of Buenos Aires that, under the watch of the Cardinal-Primate, do as they please in the Ordinary Form. Father Dotro and his superior, who cannot ignore what is going on, in this way mock traditionalists about whom they should care.
The poor blogger, so he would not be accused of falsifying anything, even recorded the new (1970) lectionary lessons read out in the once-a-month mass... [A full translation of the post should be posted by us soon.]
And so what was the great and generous application of Summorum Pontificum in the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires? One Novus Ordo-TLM hybrid once a month. And, as it happens to any badly celebrated Latin Mass, the number of attending faithful fast dwindled from one hundred to a handful. And, naturally, it was discontinued. So, as correctly mentioned in WikiMissa, there is currently not a single actual Traditional Mass strictly according to the 1962 Missal celebrated by diocesan priests of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires. And every priest who tried to truly implement Summorum in his parish - that is, out of their own initiative, without "authorization" from the Bishop - was ordered to stop. It is what happened to a poor priest who tried to do it in the chapel of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, in October 2007, and was personally ordered by the Archbishop to stop in November 2007. [The complete post of this shameful event, also mentioned by Página Católica, in a 2011 post, will also be translated and posted shortly.]
That is how the then-Archbishop applied Summorum in his diocese. Now, will that have any influence in his current Supreme position? We shall see. We certainly do have a very liturgical new pope, with determined liturgical views, implemented from his very first minutes as pope. Whether these views will be pleasing to some who are now criticizing us is an altogether different matter. On the other hand, those who are used to bending will certainly have no problem with the changes.
*** This is also important: the diocesan Traditional Masses mentioned by dear Fr. Finigan as occurring in Argentina do not include any in the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires precisely because there are not any there, which is limited to the Federal Capital (Autonomous City of Buenos Aires, which, despite the name, is outside Buenos Aires Province, in a situation comparable to that of the District of Columbia and Maryland). The three mentioned by him are in Buenos Aires Province: Villa Celina (La Matanza Partido, Diocese of San Justo), Rawson (Chacabuco Partido, Diocese of Mercedes-Luján), and La Plata (Capital of the Province of Buenos Aires, Archdiocese of La Plata). The Archbishop's territory became a Summorum-free zone.