Rorate Caeli

Laguérie speaks

The Superior of the Institut du Bon Pasteur (Institute of the Good Shepherd-IBP), Father Philippe Laguérie, is visiting the Latin American District of the IBP, and has granted an interview to one of the largest Brazilian dailies, Folha de S. Paulo (Tip and transcript: Le Forum Catholique)


FOLHA - How will the decision to say the Traditional Mass be taken?

Laguérie - There is the liberty of every priest to decide to say the ancient Mass. He may receive faithful who attend the Mass, but it remains a private Mass [a Mass which the priest celebrates out of his own will and which does not belong to the officil schedule of the Church, even if there is attending public. - sic] In order for a Mass, a public Mass, to take place in a parish, it is necessary that a stable group of faithful make the demand. If the parish priest cannot respond to that demand, they must look for the bishop, who should do all that is possible to attend to the faithful. In case this does not happen, appeal must be sought at the Ecclesia Dei Commission, in Rome


May this return to the ancient Mass be seen as an example of the return of the Catholic Church, under Benedict XVI, to conservatism?

The new Mass corresponds to the theology of the 1960s. The ancient Mass, to a theology which has been eternal in the Catholic Church.


In this context of changes in the Catholic Church, what is the role of the Institute of the Good Shepherd, to which you belong?

The institute is a trial balloon for the "motu proprio" and also a call for a rapprochement with the Fraternity of Saint Pius X, considering that all the initial members of the institute came from this group.

Also: Interesting interview with Dr. Alcuin Reid (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, starts at approx. 38min; transcript also available).

Update (July 16): Recent comments by Father Federico Lombardi, SJ, head of the Holy See Press Office (on Summorum Pontificum - in English; also on a new encyclical on social issues, 2008 papal trips to Lourdes and America - in Italian)


  1. Beautiful words on the Mass. Thank-you Abbe.

  2. Anonymous5:04 PM

    Isn't there a limitation on how many Masses a priest can say a day? I wonder how that works with regards to private Masses. In other words, if a pastor has three Masses on a Sunday and wants to start with a private Tridentine Mass, it might prevent him from doing so because of a limit.

  3. Add your contact information to the Summorum Pontificum Contact Database. This should prove to be an invaluable tool to "get the ball rolling." When I signed up yesterday I was number 803 -- now we're up to 843! Deo gratias.

  4. That Australian Broadcasting interview is really something to behold.

    Dr. Reid is sandwiched in between two figures (Pawlikowski, Williams) who clearly are not happy with the Motu Proprio, and have very different senses of what the liturgy should be.

    Williams first tries to dismiss traditionalism as a very, very tiny group, using some dubious numbers:

    Well I think Stephen, the statistics I think are interesting for us to look at. I've done some research in the past few days with the Pastoral Projects Office and the results of that research is this: that there are somewhere in the order of between 750,000 and 780,000 Catholic people going to mass on any given Sunday in the church's year. The statistics that have been collected would suggest that of that number, somewhere between 1400 to 1800 people are attending the pre-Vatican II mass. I'm not a particularly good mathematician but I think that's about 1/10th of 1% of the total number of people who are currently availing themselves of the opportunity to celebrate mass according to the pre-Vatican II form.

    Maybe that's not far off if he is speaking only of Australia and only on weekdays. But on Sundays? Any Aussies here have a sense of that?

    And then, responding to Reid's point that the mass is not a didactic exercise:

    Stephen Crittenden: But at another level, he's saying Look, don't worry about the meaning of the words-

    Peter Williams: Oh well, the Second Vatican Council in the famous Section 14 of the Constitution of the Sacred Liturgy called for 'the full conscious active participation of the faithful that is theirs by right of their baptism'. And we've been aiming, in all the liturgical renewal since the Second Vatican Council to achieve that.

    And once again, it's this curious and narrow reading of participatio actuosa - read through the lens of Annabele Bugnini, not St. Pius X.

  5. Could any of the good folks here refer me to a good overview of the life and works of Bugnini?

    I'd prefer something not polemical, but I'm not looking for hagiography, either.

    Thanks in advance.

  6. Anonymous7:01 PM

    Hagiography of Anibale Bugnini? Surely, you jest. Some day I hope to entertain a comparative biography of Alfredo Cardinal Ottaviani and H.E. Abp Bugnini. Therefore your potential list interests me. The only book that HE wrote, to the best of my knowledge, is called THE REFORM OF THE LITURGY 1948-1979.

  7. Anonymous3:28 PM

    Semper versus orientem in the holydays of the pope in Lorenzago di Cadore (Italy)!!!


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