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How Vatican II differed from other councils July 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, reading, sadness, scandals, secularism, the return.
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I started reading a new book the other day, one I’ve long had but which wound up in storage. I actually bought this book when I first caught fire in the Faith, but for various reasons never got around to reading it, principly because it’s been sitting in a box in a storage locker for the past 6 years!  514Vw66Z1XL__SY346_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_

Nevertheless, I had retrieved it from storage and started to read it. The book is The Decline and Fall of the Catholic Church in America by David Carlin. I’ll be honest, I read the first 50 or so pages of the book, and then put it back on the shelf, which is something I almost never do. I stopped reading in this case, however, because the book promised to reveal little I didn’t already know from superior sources, and because I could not agree with one of the author’s key suppositions early in the book, one of the three foundational principles upon which the book is based. I may return to the book later, but for now, especially coming off reading a dozen or more very heavy duty and impeccably researched books on the subject, I decided not to continue.  That is a very rare event for me – I am a stubborn book-reader, even sticking with marginal or bad books, just to get them over with.

Nevertheless, I quit.  The point of divergence was Carlin’s claim that Vatican II was really nothing different, that the Church has always been doing two key things that sort of defined the Council: “changing doctrine,” and changing the Mass.

Triumph of the Church_ANDREA DA FIRENZEIn the first case, Carlin is simply, absolutely, wrong. What he terms “changing” doctrine, prior to Vatican II, really meant clarifying and, on rare occasions, formally codifying as Dogmas, those doctrines already universally held. The two examples he cites, the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption, are both perfect examples of this.  Both Blessed Pope Pius IX in the first case, and Venerable Pope Pius XII in the second, surveyed the bishops of the world to ascertain whether both doctrines were universally held before formally declaring them Dogmas. When the answers returned as overwhelmingly in agreement with the formal act of definition, the Dogmas were proclaimed. Thus, Catholics did not have some “new” truth unleashed on them – they merely had codified that truth which had always been almost universally held.  Reading Dom Prosper Gueranger, he makes plain that these definitions were met with universal acclaim and joy by laity and clergy alike.

What many people fail to understand, even very conservative Catholics, is that the Church is One.  The Church is One not only in terms of space, but also in time. Thus, what the Church believes to be Truth today, must have been Truth yesterday, and will be tomorrow.  Christ is also One, and the Church is Trinity_pious picture2His Mystical Body.  There can be no separation. There can be no “new truth.”  So, while it is true that, especially in the early Church, certain dogmas like the nature of the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity took some time to formally define, the Church never taught error in this regard, and in fact, fought many battles to preserve Truth. It is also true that whatever doctrines/dogmas which took some time to formally elucidate were always held in nascent form and discernible by reason from the twin pillars of the Faith of Scripture and Tradition.

Carlin’s other claim is that the Mass has always been changing.  Here he is on somewhat firmer ground, but not much.  Yes, the Mass did change especially in the early Church, and there were perhaps a dozen or so variants in use in the High Middle Ages, but the differences in these Masses were frequently trivial. He trots out the old, discredited canard that the Council of Trent “created” a new revision of the Mass, which is utterly false. What Trent did is codify the Gallico-Roman form of the Latin Rite (which was the predominant Mass then in use) as the universal standard, while allowing some venerable Rites, at least 200 years old (like the Ambrosian and Mozarabic Rites) to remain.  Trent did make a few very minor changes as part of this standardization, but most of these were virtually invisible to the man in the pews.  What Carlin fails to note is that the development of the Mass had always been organic – that is, small changes accrued over time, coming typically from the bottom up, in various dioceses or monasteries around the Church, which gradually over the course of decades or centuries became a bit different from another Mass offered elsewhere.Christ Light of the World_pius picture

Vatican II was totally, radically different. For one, the scope of the changes made to the Novus Ordo were orders of magnitude larger than those made in any previous revision of the Mass. This was the total destruction of the former Rite, and the fabrication of a totally new Rite on the spot. The changes were totally inorganic: they were imposed in rather brutal fashion from above by the highest Church authority, made virtually overnight and by a small cabal of self-anointed experten, with dozens of Propers literally thrown together overnight, some of which may even have been written by protestants (it is known with certainty that many of the banal prayers of the post-VII Liturgy of the Hours were written by protestant “advisers”).  What is more, while Trent left venerable old Rites in place, the Traditional Latin Mass was declared “abrogated,” even though in reality it wasn’t, and such is essentially impossible, anwyay.  For 20 odd years, the TLM was virtually extinct in the canonically regular Church.  But the biggest factor was the enormous, massive nature of the changes, many of which were not even specified by the Council (but, there is an argument they could be inferred from various parts of the Conciliar text, and that argument has varying degrees of merit).  Essentially, the faithful were told that the Mass they had always known and, for the most part, dearly loved, was deficient, bad, even, stultifying, and ineffective of Grace.  They were told how much they hated Latin and how they had never understood anything.  Given that the Mass was the core of the experience of the Faith most Catholics had, both the changes, and the campaign to “sell” them by discrediting the old Mass, caused many Catholic heads to untitledspin so far, they unscrewed themselves and fell off.  In essence.

Again, with respect to Doctrine or “teaching,” Vatican II made such comprehensive, all-encompassing declarations, in a manner never before seen, most Catholics were led quite easily to believe that the Council did, in fact, “change” many beliefs previously held.  Now, much of this was the work of the progressive faction at the Council and their media allies, in their quest to radically transmogrify the Faith into a construct amenable to the dominant cultural sexular paganism, but the fact remains that in the 2000 year history of the Church, there has never been another Council like Vatican II.  Vatican II was the first Council that failed to specifically define any Doctrine, or condemn any error. Vatican II was written with a language and style utterly unlike any Council that preceded it, or really any official Church iconoclasm-detailproclamation, for that matter.  In the subjects it covered, in the manner in which it “spoke,” in what it left out (like the formal condemnation of communism that was the #1 request in the pre-conciliar survey of the world’s bishops for items to address at the Council) – Vatican II was simply unheard of in the history of the Church.  It was such a radical shift from what Catholics – observant or not – had experienced previously, that it is little surprise that the progressives had no difficulty at all in selling their vision of “newchurch” to the faithful.  And it is little wonder the vast majority eagerly latched onto that “newchurch” bandwagon, only to fall off into the inevitable disinterest and apostasy that was its only possible destination.

I appreciate Carlin’s effort, and the book is very positively reviewed, but after admittedly only a few pages, I just felt like I had read the same analysis, done much better, in other books.  Books like The Desolate City, Iota Unum, The Second Vatican Council: an unwritten history, The Great Facade, etc,. etc. I think I may also be worn out on the topic, for the time being.  Carlin does present some great statistical data throughout the book, such as the statistic that people over-report their Mass attendance in polls, because people tend to over-report all expected “good” behavior in polls. Thus, Mass attendance in the US is not the self-reported 25%, but more like 10-15%, which actual diocesan data reveals. But I think we as the Church are not well served by pretending that Vatican II is some super-council that trumps everthing that came before, or that it is eminently reconciliable with Tradition, or that the changes in the Mass were nothing unusual.  I don’t think any of these views can be fully justified at this point.


A cry of anguish over the Novus Ordo March 5, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, error, Eucharist, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Latin Mass, Liturgy, North Deanery, Papa, persecution, priests, sadness, scandals, secularism.
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I’ve been blogging a bit of late about Dr. Jay Boyd and her new book Natural Family Planning: Trojan Horse in the Catholic Bedroom.  There is a side story there I hope to get to tomorrow, but for today I wanted to point out another post on Jay’s blog about her struggles at the Novus Ordo Mass.  A friend/reader actually pointed this out to me, so thanks Steve B. I think Dr. Boyd’s comments on the Latin Mass deserve wide reading, so I’m going to copy extensive bits of her post and add emphasis and comments as usual:

For me, Sundays are…Just. Not. Good. I’ve addressed that here and other places on this blog; see the “TLM, Liturgy, and Liturgical Abuse” tab at the top of the page.
Now, however, I’ve progressed to a new level of anguish.14771440-abandoned-catholic-church-building-on-cat-island-bahamas
It’s not that we have more egregious liturgical abuses than other parishes do; it could be a lot worse.  Still, the bad music, the ad-libbed prayers, the often-ridiculous “prayers of the faithful”, [yes, even those taken from the “reformed” Liturgy of the Hours are frequently so banal and worldly as to be depressing, when they’re not actively asking for things that are impossible or even destructive]   the glad-handing and racing around the church at the “sign of peace”, and so on…ad nauseum…constitutes a continuous grating on the nerves.
But now the problem is that I am becoming more and more aware of thetheological issues with the Novus Ordo Mass. I can’t ignore it NM_20CHURCHG_22180153%20(Small)-thumb-300x212-126998any longer. I can’t pretend. I know too much. [I feel her pain. It’s not a pleasant place to be, especially in Dr. Boyd’s circumstances, with few TLM options anywhere even remotely near]
On the Sundays when we attend Mass celebrated by a fairly orthodox priest, I get my hopes up a little, and I think, “Maybe this week I can hang onto my state of grace long enough to receive Holy Communion.” Because usually I don’t. Recently, though, even when I have been able to overlook the bad music and a few liturgical abuses, I cannot bring myself to receive. [Well, that’s a catastrophe.  What an indictment!]
That’s because, on the heels of that thought about receiving Holy Communion, I wonder how I can receive at a Mass that seems to be inherently flawed in its own perception of itself, so to speak. It’s a Mass that says it’s Catholic, but wants very badly to be Protestant. It fools most of the people most of the time. But it seems to me that it can’t fool the people who have attended and plumbed the depths of the ancient Rite, the Mass of the Ages, the “extraordinary form” of the Mass, the Traditional Latin Mass, the Tridentine Mass…whatever you want to call it. In my own mind, I often call it “the real Mass”. (And yes, I know the NO is a valid Mass, assuming the basic conditions are met.
Dr. Boyd then goes on to list the theological problems she sees in the Novus Ordo:2012-06-27 10_01_26
First, there is the problem of the NO Mass seeing itself as an “assembly” rather than a “sacrifice”. It’s a “memorial of the Lord’s Supper” rather than the sacrifice of the Cross. Its essence is defined as the “gathering” of the People of God”. [This is exactly right, and it was intentional. Pope Paul VI and the other “reformers” wanted a Mass that was much more soothing to protestant sensibilities. Protestants hate the idea of the Mass as Sacrifice, so that had to go.  The modernist sensibilities of many of the reformers (Bugnini, Lercaro, many others) also militated in favor of radically reducing the sacrificial aspects of the Mass. It’s one of the most disturbing changes made in the entirety of the Novus Ordo, and has had the effect of dramatically decreasing belief in the Real Presence, proper participation in the Mass, and so many theological tenets that flow from the Real Presence.]  When I was the secretary at my parish, it was my duty to prepare a little script each week for the “announcer” to read, giving a little summary of the Gospel, etc. I always included the line, “Now let us take a few minutes of silence to prepare ourselves for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.” One announcer wouldnever say the word “sacrifice”; he said “celebration”. (And most announcers could not remain silent for more than 30 seconds before saying, “Now let us stand for our opening song.”)
SAMSUNG  Second, there’s the problem of the role of the priest. In the EF Mass, you can see that the priest is really a priest, and that he offers the sacrifice for us, and that it is a Really Important Event. In the NO, the Mass is defined as “the People of God…called together, with a priest presiding and acting in the person of Christ”.  [I think this quote is from the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), the “guidebook” for the Novus Ordo] The important thing to note is that the NO revisers made the priest a “presider”, and out of that he has become a talk-show host. In the EF Mass, the introit is a time of the priest’s preparation for the Mass. In the NO, we’ve lost the prayers at the foot of the altar, and the introit is now the “entrance hymn” – just a parade up to the sanctuary where the priest opens with a funny comment to break the ice[Which also de-sacralizes the Mass and makes the Mass more acceptable to protestants. Which isn’t really the point, the point of the Mass is to offer the only Sacrifice acceptable to God. The detestation of the sacrificial aspect is what led the modernists at Vatican II and after, in their creation of the Novus Ordo, to attempt to deny priests the solemn right of offering so-called “private Masses,” or Masses offered with no congregation present. Such Masses are of course totally valid and very effiicacious of Grace, even for those not in attendance, as they still offer that Sacrifice.  In fact, concelebration was an attempt to create a means for priests to “offer Mass” without doing so privately.  Even today, in this Diocese, there are pastors who attempt to prevent their younger vicars or assistants from offering private Masses, and there are Diocesan rules against having altars in rectories to that end]musicam sacram.jpg
Does it have to be this way? No. Does the theology of the New Mass expose itself to this with great abandon? Yes.  [And much more.  A TLM offered facing the people would look rather silly, with the priest engaging in a dialogue with God but with his back turned to the tabernacle. But with much of that dialogue removed, or radically altered, the Novus Ordo made Mass facing the people much more viable. And the de-emphasis of the sacrificial nature of the Mass of course leads to things like Communion in the Hand.  The list goes on……]
Third, the “new translation” notwithstanding, we still have weak prayers. “Sin” has been put back into them in places, but they still lack the force, the power, the no-nonsense-tell-it-like-it character of the real prayers. Just look at a 1962 Missal to see the difference. [This is very true.  The Propers – the variable prayers at each Mass – for the TLM are much more specific, much more hardhitting, than virtually any Propers in the Novus Ordo.  In the TLM, specific sins are condemned in the Collect or Introit, or exhortations to very specific virtues are made in the Offertory and Secret – like emphasis on fasting  and suffering during Lent.  In addition, the Bible readings – one of the main “selling points” of the Novus Ordo, are much more effective and just Catholic, as Fr. Ray Blake points out here.  For an example, St. Paul’s critical statements regarding the Real Presence in 1 COR 11:26-29 are wiped out in the Novus Ordo – they’re just skipped.  Like they don’t exist.  There is much more, but let’s move along]
578097_10151002632063210_1904214918_n.jpgFourth, the concept of the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist has been diluted and distorted, so that it’s no wonder people don’t really believe in the Real Presence any more. The GIRM states that “Christ is really present in the very liturgical assembly gathered in his name, in the person of the minister, in his word, and indeed substantially and continuously under the Eucharistic species.” Now, all of those things may be true, but lumping it all together that way, brings the Real Presence down a few notches, to say the least, and fails to show with actions the ineffable and sublime meaning of the real Real Presence.  [Again, all dead on right, and all very intentional. There were in fact seven! “other real presences” proffered by the modernists to undermine the true Real Presence in the Body and Blood. Again, this was done for “ecumenical” ends, to make the Mass more acceptable to protestants, and to support modernist sensibilities and their prideful insistence they could create a better Mass in a few years than so many Saints and other holy men could over many hundreds of years]
In addition, the omission of actions that show the greater reverence due the Real Presence, have led people away from the sense of awe we should experience when we are in that Presence, and when we receive Holy Communion. Reception of Communion standing and in the hand, the disparaging of veils for women, the casual dress permitted for lay ministers…these are all of the answer to the question, “Why don’t people believe in the Real Presence?”  [Just spot on.  Truly great analysis. I pray people are still reading this!  But this is not all. It’s not just in such actions on the part of the laity that have dramatically de-sacralized the Mass, it is changes to the very Mass itself. It was the removal of so many “useless repetitions,” the numerous genuflections made by the priest in the TLM, the dozens of signs of the Cross made by the priest cut down to just a couple in the Novus Ordo, the cheap and ugly vestments that replaced the glorious silken chasubles of the past…..all these things de-emphasize the sacred and replace it with something else, something much more worldly and materialist]8A52BE6093474ED1478C6D539AF1B_h316_w628_m5_cFGxiSLXB
 But I ask you: isn’t that enough?!  [It’s sadly true, there is so much more, so much more than could go in this post]
What makes me really sad – and really angry – is that so much of this appears to have been done on purpose by those with a modernist view and agenda at the Second Vatican Council. They purposely Protestantized the Mass. The evidence is out there; there are many accounts of what was said behind the scenes, what the modernists wanted to accomplish, the involvement of Protestants in guiding the “reform” of the Mass. (See for instance, Romano Amerio’s Iota Unum, Anne Muggeridge’s Desolate City, and titles like Liturgical Shipwreck by Michael Davies.)
———————————End Quote——————————
lit_kim_12.jpgAgain, I’m afraid Dr. Boyd is absolutely correct in that last quoted paragraph. And go to her blog, there is more to read there.  But it is critical to note that everything she and I have said was pointed out during the Council and shortly after by those prelates opposed to the progressive, often modernist change agents.  Ottaviani, Bacci, Siri, Luigi, Spellman, Tromp……numerous Council fathers were not only vehemently opposed to the changes but prophesied exactly what would happen once the changes were made, and it’s exactly what Boyd and I wrote above. And they weren’t a tiny minority – Roberto de Mattei makes clear that the orthodox faction at the Council was about the same size as the radical, progressive faction (with most prelates in the soft middle – some things never change), but the progressives had the media, and, most importantly, support from both conciliar popes on many issues.  Well intentioned they may have been, but 50 years of experience with radical changes to the Mass show that the effects have been anything but positive, as the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI pointed out repeatedly, and most vociferously at the end of his pontificate.
I know this is a sensitive issue for some readers, but I believe more and more that the future of the liturgy is the Traditional Latin Mass.