Sunday, June 22, 2008

Zut Alors! More Canadian Rivest-ance

By Patrick Archbold

Wow! I mean...Wow!

Fr. John Zuhlsdorf has the incredible story of His Excellency Most Reverend André Rivest, Bishop of Chicoutimi in Canada. (What is it with these Bishops in Canada?). Bishop Rivest is in open opposition to Pope Benedict XVI and his motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.
The bishop of Chicoutimi, André Rivest, is opposed to the Tridentine Mass and will not apply the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum in his diocese, in spite of the request addressed to the parish priest of Sacred Heart Church, Msgr Jean-Roch Gaudin by 130 faithful. This latter, in his parish bulletin, gave the good reasons for not applying the Motu Proprio. Here are some of the most significant excerpts:

“… A month ago, a petition signed by 100 persons was handed to me, requesting permission for one Mass a month in the ‘extraordinary form’, in one of the three churches of the parish, preferably the church of Christ the King. According to the Motu Proprio, I was entitled to grant the request.

But as the signatories were hailing from various parishes of the diocese, and out of solidarity with the pastoral policy of the whole diocese, I thought it right to consult with Bishop André Rivest, the first Pastor of the diocese, and at the same time to give him the petition so that he may give a diocesan orientation on this issue.

Bishop Rivest consulted with his Presbyteral Council (composed of various priest of the diocese) on Monday, May 19 last, and the next day he phoned me and said he thought it good not to grant permission to celebrate Mass in the ‘extraordinary form’” in the diocese for the following reasons:
Reason A -- The same ol' Stable Group willful and ungenerous misinterpretation. (Clarifying document please!!! Soon please!!!)

Reason B -- "The permission to celebrate Masses in the ‘extraordinary form’ will be a source of division among priests and faithful, and the impact of such a celebration may well be negative. " Evidence ... none. The Bishop says division to cause division and thus there is division.

Reason C -- The Priest and the particpants must have been fluent in Latin sice before 1965 and a regular attendee at non-existent Latin masses since then or it is a no-go. Sorry.
"Among the criteria put forward by the Holy Father in his Motu Proprio, the bishop must examine whether the persons requesting and the priests themselves have a liturgical training and a ‘certain familiarity’ with the ‘extraordinary form’ of the Latin rite, as well as a good knowledge of the Latin language"
Yes. The attendees need liturgical training and good Latin! No problem, I am sure they could have gotten that from the seminaries lo these many years. Ridiculous.

To add insult to injury, these Papal resistence fighters warn the rejected parishioners not to waste their time going above their heads. Becuase the Bishop is in charge, not the Pope.
In order to discourage any attempt at a recourse with the Ecclesia Dei Commission, as it is foreseen by the Motu Proprio, Msgr. Gaudin answered in advance: “It is not the pope who is the first person responsible for pastoral care and the liturgy in the diocese, but the bishop. And the popes usually respect this responsibility, unless there are some very, very, very serious reasons. The pope will certainly not intervene in this affair and will certainly not oblige our bishop to have a Tridentine Mass in the diocese. He will only ask him for additional information and respect his decision. The bishop will have lost time uselessly.”
This is absolutely amazing. Abhorrent, but amazing. Go read the entire thing over at WDTPRS.


Anonymous said...

There is almost no point in commenting on these clowns' resistance. Nobody is listening. Nobody cares.

A group, in Canon Law, need consist of only three people (some say only two). That is what the Canon Law Society of Great Britain found when it did a survey of the term in ecclesiastical law. Hence, if even three of the 100 petitioners mentioned came from that parish or demonstrated in writing an intention to worship there regularly, there is no problem. In law, they need only sign a declaration saying that they intend to worship there on some regular basis. This is because the rule that one must normally fulfil the obligation in one's own parish was revoked decades ago.

There is no requirement anywhere of fluency in Latin on the part of anyone, just as there is nothing to stop me in law from fulfilling my obligation by going to a New Mass in Croatian, a language I don't understand. Under Canon 928, every priest has a right to celebreat EITHER form of Mass in Latin, his lingua sacra. If he's not trained in that language, the fault lies with his bishop and seminary. To be 'qualified' (Section 4 of Article 5), he need only be able to pronounce the words accurately and know the general meaning of the prayers of the Ordinary. (Ideally, he should know the general meaning of the propers too but it is not necessary to know the lections, since he has the option of reading them in the vernacular anyway.) In private Masses (Articles 1 and 4 of S.P.), even that restriction does not apply, and such Masses can include invited guests.

The reference to the training of the faithful is an echo of Section 1 of Article 1, of the term "adhærentium". In law, however, the most is assumed of petitioners when they stand on their rights and the meaning of terms is not clarified (cf. Canons 17, 19). Clearly, if someone says that he 'adheres' to the old Mass, the law considers this to be sufficient evidence of that fact. The law cannot impose unexpressed burdens.

The last point made by these chancery hacks directly contradicts Article 12 of S.P. It is the P.C.E.D. which has the papal authority to oversee the dispositions of S.P.

But many people are missing the point here. S.P. does not guarantee a right of the faithful to the old Mass, it guarantees them only a canonical process under which their petitions for this must be considered with respect. Ultimately, however, the chancey hacks are right when they claim that the P.C.E.D. will only make suggestions but will not impose anything on the Bishop.

S.P. guarantees a right of *parish priests*, not faithful. Therefore, these petitioners should find a parish priest who WANTS to celebrate their Mass every Sunday. If they find one, the Bishop--at least in law--can't stop them.

But it does not matter, and there is no point seeing what Fr. Z. has to say. If these bishops are forced to swallow the letter of the law, they will find other ways to exert control, such as threats. Every diocese has its gulags, and the priest who insists on something his Bishop discourages will find himself saying "Introibo ad altare Dei" in a hospice chapel for ten unconscious patients.

This is all nonsense. We need the universal diocese and we need it soon; otherwise, this Pope will look like a failure on this. The jurisdiction will not fix our problems in a day, but it would entrench our Mass for the future. Popes tend to think long term, and rightly so.

Being a Cannuck myself, I can say that the pinko bishops of Québec will not bend easily on this.

Peter Karl T. Perkins
Victoria, Canada

Anonymous said...

This story is starting to snowball.
Again a bishop from Quebec...

Anonymous said...

The Motu Proprio is now coming under scrutiny and being found to be 1. Canonically invalid. 2. Theologically unorthodox. But who can judge the Pope? So the most orthodox and responsible thing the bishops can do is to refuse to implement the MP and hope it becomes a dead letter.

Chironomo said...

This is the second place in two days I have seen the claim that SP is "canonically invalid". I have read carefully the reasons given and am amazed that somehow the entire group of canonists who worked on SP, probably for well over a year, missed such compelling arguments. Apparently anonymous (of course) has access to the highest levels of the Vatican's juridicial apparatus and has gained this insight which is, of course, being covered up at the highest levels. Isn't this just a lame excuse for not wanting to do what you're told?

Anonymous said...

The Pope is quite capable of ignoring his canonists when it comes to the crunch. They probably said the MP would be valid as an extension of what John Paul II conceded to recalcitrant traditionalists. The idea that an abrogated rite can enjoy parity with the reformed rite that replaced it, on the authority of a Council, a Pope and the world's bishops, is a monstrosity. Let us hope the bishops have the guts to speak up at the October Synod. Otherwise we will have to await a Council to clear up the mess Benedict has made and the divisions he has sown.

We have seen that the safeguards retained in the MP have been recklessly cast aside in the rhetoric of Ranjith and Castrillon Hoyon, which is full of derogatory insinuations about bishops and cardinals. This shows an utter contempt for law. Allied with this is the utter contempt for orthodoxy in the promotion of a retrograde eucharist theology that divorces Christ's sacrifice from community, from concern for society, from the eschatological orientation of the church to the kingdom.

Anonymous said...

The novus ordo has the authority of Paul VI ALONE, it was approved by no council at all. This is the point: to which exact extent the novus ordo follows the council (on latin, gregorian, "organic continuity").
Obviously, resistance by bishops will only makes matter worse and just retard the coming back of the tridentine mass while stiffening the resolve of its defenders.

Anonymous said...

The Motu Proprio has the authority of Benedict XVI ALONE and AGAINST the advice of bishops. Paul VI acted in consultation with and with the accord of the universal episcopate and in the name of Vatican II, which had mandated liturgical reform.