Monday, July 7, 2008

Summorum Pontificum First Anniversary articles (con't)

By Brian Kopp

Thomas E. Woods Jr. weighs in on the Summorum Pontificum First Anniversary:

Long Live Pope Benedict: The Motu Proprio, One Year Later


The pope's initiative has already borne much fruit, and interest in the Extraordinary Form continues to grow despite the cold if predictable indifference of so much of the episcopate...Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, secretary of the Congregation for Worship, has said that those bishops who obstruct the implementation of the motu proprio are allowing themselves to be used as instruments of the devil. And reaction among the bishops has indeed been mixed: Some have been cooperative, aware of how intent Benedict is on seeing this through. Others have attempted to block Benedict's move by tendentious interpretations of certain phrases in the relevant documents. The pope's observation that the celebrating priest should have some competence in Latin has been used as the basis for making priests take Latin exams prior to receiving authorization (the very concept of episcopal authorization being at odds with the document's intent) to offer the Extraordinary Form. The Latin original suggests only that priests, at a minimum, be able to pronounce the words -- though, naturally, the more Latin they can learn, the better.

Summorum Pontificum's reference to a "stable group" of faithful making a request for the Extraordinary Form has been transformed in some dioceses into a requirement (in terms of numbers of faithful, etc.) that is extremely difficult to satisfy and that has disqualified countless lay inquiries. On the other hand, we learn from Castrillón Cardinal Hoyos, president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei and former prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, that a "stable group" may consist of as few as three or four people, who need not even be from the same parish. With a clarifying note on Summorum Pontificum expected from the Holy See at any time, some observers are convinced that Cardinal Hoyos's comments reflect the contents of that forthcoming document...In recent weeks, Cardinal Hoyos has made clear just how ambitious Benedict's expectations are. The cardinal made headlines when, in response to a journalist's inquiry as to whether the pope wanted to see the Extraordinary Form in "many ordinary parishes," he replied, "All the parishes. Not many -- all the parishes, because this is a gift of God." "This kind of worship is so noble, so beautiful," he said.

Also, Zenit has posted Part 2 of Fr. Z.'s interview:

"Summorum Pontificum" One Year Later (Part 2)
Father John Zuhlsdorf Analyzes its Effects


For so long the ecclesiastical establishment looked down on and marginalized more traditional Catholics, shoving them to the back of the bus because of their attachment to our tradition. Some of the more benign saw them as being like our family’s nutty but harmless aunt up in the attic.

On the other hand, many traditionalists, perhaps out of the deep hurts and disillusionment they felt after all the changes in the Church, the silly season of illicit innovations, the ash-canning of our beautiful churches, music, vestments, statues, devotions, you name it, wound up with an enormous chip on their collective shoulder.

As time went by, many of them knew no other way to “negotiate” with bishops and priests but simply to get in their face, make pushy demands, and arrogantly tell them what to do. It got to a point where even clerics who were open and sympathetic started to wince and back away whenever traditionalists approached. And so the waters of good relations froze.

Now, because some of the pain and alienation is starting to melt away in the hearts of many traditionalists, now that they can simply have what they should have been able to have all along, now that a little warm sunshine is being beamed in their direction by the Holy Father and others who share his vision, pastors of souls are starting to unclench as well.


Anonymous said...

Dear Dr. Koop:

I humbly request that you change your by-line to "Long Live Pope Benedict XVI". the postnumeral is essential. 'Pope Benedict' is Benedict I and then only before the election of Benedict II. Journalist idiots the world over have used this informal 'Pope Benedict' nonsense. It is rude and intrusive. He only becomes 'Pope Benedict' when mentioned in the Mass or Office. This is a special affective use. Outside the liturgy, he is Benedict XVI, Pope Benedict XVI, the Pope, the Vicar of Christ, His Holiness, the Holy Father, the Supreme Pontiff, the Patriarch of the West, etcetera but NEVER 'Pope Benedict'.

Brian Kopp said...

Its not my byline, PKTP, its the title of the article by Thomas E. Woods Jr. as posted at

Anonymous said...

Following up from the controversy over the PCED letter, Brian Mershon, etc., on this 1st anniversary of the motu proprio (for which we still wait for the 'clarification' that would make it enforceable), I'm curious if Mr. Perkins is interested in asking the Council for Legislative Texts regarding the question of validity of confessions and marriages. Since this has now been stated in a non-binding, private letter from PCED (i.e., the Mershon letter) that they are invalid with SSPX, I wonder if this too should not be submitted to a more competent authority in Rome. There is now ongoing damage, I believe, to having this semi official statement 'floating' in the internet, which confuses the faithful and frankly makes us wonder exactly what the PCED is trying to say (take the discussion of schism, for example-Msgr. Perl's description of the Vatican's language is VERY different from Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos'). There is now a complete lack of agreement on even basic points that is doing far more harm than good, especially when one realizes that the SSPX's strongest attraction to people is SAFETY and SECURITY of Sacraments, Faith and morals in the face of horrible abuses and errors. I had THOUGHT that PCED's more recent language was intended to REASSURE the priests and faithful of SSPX of good intentions, including recognition that they are Catholic, even if attending SSPX isn't recommended. Now we don't really know what to think.