Rorate Caeli

Traditional Mass: Sign of Contradiction
In Italy and around the world

From the Friday edition of Italian daily Il Foglio:

Debate in the CEI (Italian Episcopal Conference): the motu proprio on the Mass should not be interpreted, but applied.

ROME. Last Monday, in his opening statement to the meeting of the Permanent Council [of the Italian Episcopal Conference-CEI], the President of the CEI, Archbishop of Genoa Angelo Bagnasco, had included a decidedly positive reception of the motu proprio "Summorum Pontificum" by which Benedict XVI has recognized the full citizenship of the pre-Conciliar Mass in the Catholic Church, liberalizing its use.

Yet, from the first interventions in the discussion which happenedbehind closed doors, it was understood that not all think thus in the little parliament of the CEI. Critical words towards the so-called Tridentine Mass came from the Archbishop of Lanciano, Carlo Ghidelli, a Lombard, and from [the Archbishop] of Chieti, Bruno Forte, a Neapolitan, both of them former students of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini.

The Archbishop of Lucca, Benvenuto Italo Castellani, the Archbishop of Palermo, Paolo Romeo (in the line to receive the cardinalatial porpora in the next consistory), and the Bishop of Cerignola, Felice di Molfetta -- president of the Episcopal Commission for the Liturgy and who, in the past, was harshly critical even towards "Redemptionis Sacramentum", the instruction against liturgical abuses published in 2004 by the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship, in agreement with the [Congregation] for the Doctrine of the Faith, guided by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger -- also spoke against the Missal fully rehabilitated by the reigning Pontiff.

The common thread of all these critical interventions was, on one hand, the charge that the old Missal is imbibed in an ecclesiology now incompatible with that which would be expressed by the new Missal, a product of the liturgical reform effected in the post-Council, and, on the other, the call for the CEI to take responsibility for the preparation of an interpretative document of the motu proprio for its application, in an obviously restrictive sense, in the Italian Church.

The attempt to weaken "Summorum Pontificum" in the very nation which has the Pope as its primate was nonetheless voided.

The demand for the promulgation of an interpretative document was not accepted also because Cardinals of great relevance, such as Camillo Ruini, Carlo Caffarra, and Angelo Scola, expressed themselves against this possibility in clear interventions.


The perplexities of consistent sectors of the Italian Church regarding the motu proprio had already been revealed in late August, in Spoleto, where the 58th National Liturgical Week was celebrated. At the time, many liturgists had asked Bishop Di Molfetta to convey to the Pope, with a letter endorsed by the CEI, the concerns and perplexities with the liberalization of the pe-Conciliar Mass. But the secretary of the CEI, Bishop Giuseppe Betori, avoided signing it.


  1. The blueprint for the MP Summorum Pontificum can be found in the Ratzinger book: The Ratzinger Report.

    In that book published in 1985 he already talks about an ordinary and an extraordinay form of the Latin Rite.

  2. Anonymous1:45 PM

    It appears that there are two minds, two bodies and two spirits in our Church.

  3. Anonymous2:18 PM

    The only logical conclusion to ma tucker's comment is that the Conciliar Church is defective, and hence not directed by the Holy Ghost. The Catholic Church is one, holy, catholic, and apostolic. Hmmmm.

  4. Anonymous2:50 PM

    Ma tucker is probably refering in a metaphorical manner to Don Bosco's famous vision of the battle at sea, where the bark of Peter is attacked and defended by other ships, each representing, according to many interpretors, other local churches, until the helmsman on Peter's bark is slain,and his successor chains the Barque of Peter to the pillars of the Eucharist and Our Lady Help of Christians.

    With the MP the vollies of cannon fire began, and we are only seeing the playing out of a drama forseen by God from eternity, and revealed to His holy servant Don Bosco.

    Why even Our Lady at Akita (approved by the Church) said that Cardinal would be at war with Cardinal, Bishop with Bishop, priest with priest. . ..

  5. Anonymous3:07 PM

    "The common thread of all these critical interventions was, on one hand, the charge that the old Missal is imbibed in an ecclesiology now incompatible with that which would be expressed by the new Missal, a product of the liturgical reform effected in the post-Council"

    That just might be the problem right there! If this is true then a reform of the reform is not only in order it is essential. This is a clear endorsement of ther hermeneutic of rupture.

  6. Anonymous3:46 PM

    "The common thread of all these critical interventions was,...the charge that the old Missal is imbibed in an ecclesiology now incompatible with that which would be expressed by the new Missal,"***

    ***There is truth in this observation but the incompatibility is in the anti-hierarchical ecclesiology that was spread in the post-conciliar crisis and cast on to the new Missal that included Protestant notions of Church and ministry and a denigration of the ordained priesthood.

    This has come to a head with the "Lay Ecclesial Ministry" push and heretical notions that lay people could confect the Eucharist and that there is no real difference between the ordained priest and the priesthood of the laity.

    EM's, Priestless Sunday rituals, and the like have exacerbated this crisis and have hurt vocations.

  7. Anonymous3:57 PM

    Pontificia Commissione Ecclesia Dei
    Pontificia Commissio Ecclesia Dei
    Palazzo della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede, Piazza del Sant'Uffizio, 11 - 00193 Roma
    Tel. (06) - - Fax -
    Presidente: Sua Em. Cardinale Darìo Castrillòn Hoyos (Piazza della Città Leonina, 1, 00193 Roma - tel.
    Segretario: Mons. Camille Perl (Via di Porta Angelica, 63 - 00193 Roma - tel. 687.48.30)

  8. Anonymous4:37 PM


  9. A split up Church in Italia.
    A "Ratzingerian" sensibility exists within the CEI and the Bugninist stronghold is backfighting harshly : we can see that the litniks are holding some fortresses. Nearly always the same Bugninist bishops are leading the "Liturgical Committee", whether in the USA, Italy, France etc.

    However some local Churches are unfortunate enough to be 90% Bugninist ... like FrenChurch and 100% like GermChurch.
    At least in Italia, there are some conscious bishops ready to fight for a just cause.

    nb. Fr. Bruno Forte is the new Marinian theologian and was "cajoled" and consecrated abp. He was said to be a "friend" of then cardinal Ratzinger. We see him, naturally, among the leaders of the mitred rebellion. Cajoling liberals and promoting them to the episcopate is the most foolish policy I've ever seen. We see the results every day.

  10. Anonymous10:20 PM

    Bruno Forte is a very dangerous liberal. Many traditional Catholics hope this this man, now 58, remains in a relatively minor position and advances in the hierarchy no further.
    It is unfortunate that 1-2 liberals of the Milanese stripe (a la Montini (Paul VI) and Martini SJ, have been appointed to the Vatican Curia over the last month. Hopefully there will be no more.

  11. Anonymous1:22 AM

    There is a need to quarantine these men by not promoting them. While Priests cannot perpetuate themselves physically they do it ideologically by forming others younger to carry on their ideas. This is happening in the church now. Acidic ideas that eat away at the Church are spread as new and liberating. I hope Benedict (whom I am sure many liberals think will not be pope for long) nominates bishops and makes cardinals who will destroy the liberals. Paul VI named many fools as bishops. So did JPII..
    Pity the laity who are in the diocese of these bad Italian bishops.

  12. Anonymous10:39 AM

    Paul VI was notorious for appointing/packing the College of Cardinals and Bishophrics with liberals. Just think of what happened in the USA 1973-1980 when Jean Jadot was the Apostolic Delegate. We got a whole generation of radicals of the liberal bent who practically destroyed the USA Church. Now nearly all either dead or retired, they were sacrastically known as "The Bernardin Boys". Hubbard and Clark (Albany and Rochester), remain among the last still active of this bunch.
    John Paul II, although He realized too late the state of the Episcopate and tried to cleanse it, also appointed many progressives. Benedict XVI unfortunatly has also done so.
    This Pope must watch out for the men whom He surrounds Himself with as advisors. There are still a ppowerful band of radical liberals (nearly all aged, but a few younger protogees still being hatched....Bruno Forte (58) for one) who would seek to perpetuate the wreckage of Vatican II...and even more reforms.
    Let us hope that Pope Bneedict XVI both lives long enough to outlive this vicious group....and also is smart enough not to listen to them in making crutial appointments. To Dioceses, and also in the Curia.

  13. In essence, all that is entirely and authentically Roman Catholic by sacred tradition and holy scripture can have nothing in common with a protestantised, egologically-oriented, vernacular speaking, masonic-friendly type postmodernist conciliar church.

    There are two churches in one establishment and they are mutually inimical. The SP has compelled a realignment.
    Currently, there are two lords - Our Blessed Lord against the glorified man; two faiths - one is authentic and the other a synthetic neomodernist fabrication and there are two baptisms - The Sacrament of Baptism against the anti-sacrament of immanent salvation of all mankind through "dialogue" and "deeper understanding". One God created man and the other god has been created by man himself.

    What Roman Catholics should be praying for is One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. Since 1965, all we have had is absolute liturgical anarchy and doctrinal pluralism. What it cannot answer it treats with silent contempt.

  14. Anonymous11:49 PM

    Canonize Paul VI please, and make Bruno Forte pope.


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