Rorate Caeli

The Summorum Effect

Mrs. Monika Rheinschmitt, president of Una Voce Germany ("Pro Missa Tridentina") reports for on the explosion of regularly scheduled diocesan Traditional Masses in Germany, Austria, and German Switzerland:

The expansion in the availability of diocesan Traditional Masses in these German-speaking regions is quite impressive: a consistent improvement in the number of regular diocesan Traditional Masses in the Ecclesia Dei period elevated the number from under 20 to under 80 masses in the 1993-2007 period (first column) -- though only the 1993-1995 period was one of very large proportional growth (over 100%).

The post-Summorum Pontificum period included a growth of over 50% in the number of regularly celebrated Masses in the second semester of 2007 (second column), from less than 80 masses before the motu proprio of July 7, 2007 to over 120 after its publication.


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  2. The objective statistical evidence given here is significant, as well as very welcome, when we compare and contrast the fortunes of modernist developments in the modern church and the restoration of orthodoxy. Current figures for France would be helpful too. It is impossible to ignore SSPX there & the effect it has had on the growth of preferences for The Holy Mass in Latin.

    The NO has reduced Sunday attendance in Germany to about 13-14% and there are scores of churches due to be axed because of poor attendance, lack of clergy and the move towards church-sharing with protestant sects. Many may not like this news but it is fact. This is the same everywhere else in western Christendom. The figures are available to demonstrate that the NO has lost an immense amount of the heritage bequeathed to it by the traditional pre-conciliar Roman Catholic Church. France and Holland, Ireland and UK are typical examples of spectacular downsizing in this manner. In the USA, the trends are also shocking as the vaunted 25% attendance figure can be disputed when we use other available evidence suggesting attendance as low as that in Germany, about 13-14%. The cumulative effect of this is certainly financial but it reflects a systemic fatigue with the regime of novelty and change for the sake of it.

    For trends towards a more orthodox liturgy as represented by The Latin Mass of All Times, it is important that there is consistent, steady and solid growth and not just a "five day wonder" effect leading to disappointment later on. In relation to this, I have stated before elsewhere for several years that there are elements alive in the church who for a variety of reasons, will subject The Holy Mass in its proper Catholic language to the treatment the vernacular only edition has received. There is abundant evidence available already to illustrate that this warning is a valid one. There are Latin "masses" using servers of inappropriate ages, use of lay Eucharistic ministers, the vernacular being used inappropriately and possibly other illicit norms and values. No cleric could ever celebrate The Holy Mass in Latin without considerable instruction in the rite. One who has no sound theological training according to Canon Law but only in situation ethics and modernist biblical exegesis & philosophies over three to four years provides immense potential liturgical danger. Unless there is discipline and ample control, singularly lacking in the post-conciliar church, there is going to be increasing liturgical mayhem ahead.

    It is suggested that it would be useful if these movements were monitored and made public in order to make clear to Catholics who are perhaps less well informed, as to what constitutes a valid Holy Mass in Latin and what are not considered licit norms and values, therein.

  3. Anonymous1:18 AM

    There are Latin "masses" using servers of inappropriate ages

    What is an inappropriate age for one to serve Holy Mass?

  4. Anonymous3:56 AM

    Good points, Leong, and I doubt that any of the abuses you mention are due to insufficient training. Insufficient training causes a rubric to be missed until pointed out, it doesn't cause lay Eucharistic ministers to happen. That is deliberate rebellion, don't you think?

    About that training. Not denying the need for some training, of course, but if one intends to offer the TLM well, it only takes a couple of days to walk through the Mass in English 20 times or so, then a couple of days to learn the basic pronunciation of Latin words with a good instructor, and another couple of days of improvement and finer points - another 20 walkthroughs. Eight days, absolute max, in order to offer your routine daily high and low Mass reasonably well. This isn't rocket science. We're talking about reading cards and some pretty simple and repetitive motions, and we're talking about college grads here. Yes, you'll need more time for specialized ceremonies, but those can be mastered with a few practice sessions after the basic Mass has been learned.

    I've been in the training and education fields a long time, and repetition is the key, and this is made-for-order training material. After all, the Mass has been learned by some pretty simple minded, but devout, persons, as I'm sure you know.

    Anyway, my point is that the abuses you mention are rebellion, not lack of training, and it's going to be rampant and that's why until some heads roll and a fear of God is reinstalled in the bishops, the SSPX still can't do business as usual with the Vatican.

  5. Anonymous6:31 AM

    Bishop Fellay said that after two generations there will be no NOM and as is said "in Rome they know that".

  6. Anonymous11:40 AM

    PLease pray a little Ave for us, a little dozen of "remnants" near Cologne. The responsible priest wont allow us to have the old mass with our good old Monsignore in the church. This church now is empty the whole sunday, so that`s really modernistic ideology ...isn`t it ?

  7. Anonymous12:48 PM

    Good news:

    Bishop Ranjith on hand/stand communion.

    "Now I think it is high time to review and re-evaluate such good practices and, if necessary, to abandon the current practice that was not called for by Sacrosanctum Concilium, nor by Fathers, but was only accepted after its illegitimate introduction in some countries. Now, more than ever, we must help the faithful to renew a deep faith in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharistic species in order to strengthen the life of the Church and defend it in the midst of dangerous distortions of the faith that this situation continues to cause."

  8. Anonymous2:37 PM

    God bless this unique Archbishop !

  9. This Ranjith discussion is somewhat off-topic...

    Yet, while I certainly admire him, his words, his firmness, and hope that he will succeed Arinze, the fact is that, when I first read about this text by Ranjith a few weeks ago, I could not forget that Benedict permitted and Arinze and the Congregation Secretary (Ranjith himself) signed the authorization for the distribution of Holy Communion in the hand in Poland, the last large Catholic country in which this abominable practice was not expressly allowed, after more than a decade of denials during the Wojtyla pontificate (we reported on this one year ago).

    Naturally, it is possible that the practice may be revised in the future in the whole world, with the help of a Prefect Ranjith... but the Polish authorization remains a blemish in Ranjith's record, even though the decision was probably not up to him.

  10. Anonymous5:20 PM

    As far as I know communion on hand was permitted only there where it was widely practiced. In Poland nobody even thought about it, but cardinal Glemp (known for saying that Missa Tridentina is an archaism which can lead to sectarianism) introduced it in 2005 without permission of Vatican. In 2006 he got it. Luckily he will retire soon.

  11. Anonymous8:42 PM

    It will be the TLM that will save our church. Not that I support all the positions of the SSPX...but we may be needing to show our gratitude that somewhere our tradition was preserved. As it is said--save the liturgy and save the world.

  12. hopingforheaven:

    Holy Mother Church has never, and never will be in need of saving. We are the ones in need. We includes all the Popes and so on down the line. The Church is the Bride of our Lord. He has had to at times ask that His Church be repaired as He asked St. Francis to repair it. But it is never in need of saving.
    Many bleeding heart liberals disguised as Traditionalist love to gush over the Holiness of this Bishop or that Priest. Get a life people.
    Once a man took for himself a wife.After some years of marriage, this man was divorced from her. The authorities took the man to task constantly. He was prohibited from any further participation in
    his marriage. After forty years of divorce and the wife's subsequent remarrige, he was finally allowed to come back home and sleep on the livingroom couch, while the illegitimate husband enjoyed the legitamate husband's former marriage bed. This is the situation with the Novus Ordo Mass and the True Mass. If Bishop Ranjith or any Cardinal or Priest doesn't see the situation in those terms and speak out about this Truth, they are not worthy of Praise, and even less worthy to be a Prince in the Church.
    I am certain the SSPX leadership sees things in those terms; that is why they refuse to serve Satan. They will never say the New Mass.

  13. Joe B

    Celebrating The Holy Mass is more than mere conning by rote in 'x' days, pronouncing words in Latin and trying it out. As intention is a very important factor in saying The Holy Mass, inadequate priestly formation will affect how this is carried out. The Bugnini service is certainly no benchmark where The Holy Mass in Latin is concerned. Mastering techniques has to be accompanied by the right attitudes during The Mass. It is not a theatrical performance and we have seen that in pathetic superabundance since the late 1960s almost every time we attend a modern church service. "Repetition" is not necessarily the key either: repetition can be the enemy of the Mass. This is one of the reasons why many priests in the pre-conciliar era just rushed through it. Fortunately, some priests did not but the consequences were grave for a liturgy that will not tolerate irreverence, sloppiness and inappropriate attitudes.

    Rebellion is a problem too but this can be inextricably intertwined with lack of training - I have known several presbyters with some fairly un-Catholic beliefs but who could not even carry off the NO service. I would shudder at the thought of these trying out a "Latin Mass" as the frame of mind is not equal to the liturgical requirement.

    I am not member of the SSPX confraternity but whether people like it or not they are very much part of the equation and The Church needs these courageous sons and daughters of The Church. They can only further boost the "summorum effect", admirably demonstrated here. In fact, in certain places they have already been discreetly helping NO priests with their vocations crises and with their orthodox liturgical needs over the years. It is time the invalid labelling stopped & time also it is accepted that SSPX has a case which has still not been dealt with justly. If this were not so then the charismatics, the Neo-Catechumenal Way and other groups should be similarly labelled schismatics considering many of the false super-dogmas which circulate among them & considering some of the anti-Church sentiments expressed by their some of their clergy during their catecheses and their sabbath day liturgies. SSPX have always insisted along with independent traditional Catholics that all Catholic priests and lay have a right to the Latin Mass of All Times and that it was neither abrogated nor obrogated. Pope Benedict XVI has reaffirmed just that.

    Well done Pope Benedict XVI.

    Imagine how much better the effect would be if there were fewer rebellious and disobedient bishops. There is evidence of manifest antipathy to the SP.

    In answer to the question on appropriate ages for serving - less than 7-8 years and not having made one's First Holy Communion is inappropriate. I have heard of 4 and 5 year olds being used: this betrays stains of the novel "children's liturgy" philosophy of late.

    Where Bishop Fellay's comments are concerned, he could well be right, however, The Vatican will have to restore discipline and proper papal government if it is going to restore due Catholic liturgical rectitude. The basic problem is collegial mismanagement. There is too much democracy in Church government as if it were the gold standard everywhere for effective administration. In Church government it has very little place. In the liturgy, it has none at all. If it were otherwise then we would have to accept the ominously looming lesbian priestess.

    Of course, these pitfalls do not provide a justification for stifling the progress of the Latin Mass of All Times but they do constitute a real danger to be taken seriously.

  14. Anonymous1:22 AM

    Good points all. Perhaps I left too much unsaid in the phrase "if one intends to offer the TLM well ...". With a proper attitude and only the rubrics out of reach, it shouldn't take long to match the two, the harder part already being present. If it's not, of course, then smell the rat and chase it out.

  15. Anonymous5:41 PM

    Unfortunately the "Summorum Effect" in the USA is not so great. There are no new regular TLM sites established in New England on account of it, only occasional mass celebrations.

    What little effect there is will be underminded completely by chaning the prayers for the Jews on Good Friday:

    Anathema to all who reject the traditions of the Church! (Council of Nicea II)

    Br Alexis Bugnolo

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  17. Anonymous10:28 PM

    Hello New Catholic,
    Thanks for managing this excellent blog site.

    I was intrigued by the report on the Assyrians coming to full communion into the true Church, but just noticed you have completely removed that from the blog site. I was hoping to take notes from some of the comments therein for some personal research.

    Is there a reason you have removed that posting?

  18. In short, anon: their liturgical "experiments" and "innovations" (as sent to us in pictures) made us unsure of what exactly those separated brothers and sisters really are.

    God bless them in their negotiations to return to the Church - and may they return to the traditions of their rite.

  19. Poeta: a post is up regarding this point.