The Mass is not the Faith: The Faith is greater than the Mass.
#1
http://unamsanctamcatholicam.blogspot.co...-with.html

I'm probably gonna lose readers with this one
by Boniface

If any priest I knew told me that he felt called by God to say only the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, I would be overjoyed.

But suppose that priest were commanded to cease saying the Extraordinary Form exclusively, or were put on "sabbatical" because of it. Were he to then tell me that he was contemplating transferring out of the diocese, leaving his vocation, or perhaps disobeying his superior, or going over to the SSPX, I would be appalled. Yes, appalled.

The Mass is extraordinarily important, but the Mass is not the Faith. The Mass is not synonymous with the Christian faith in such a way that a command to cease saying a particular form of the Mass constitutes pressure to deny the Faith. A priest who has been asked by his legitimate superior to stop saying Mass - of whatever form or rite - cannot make the argument that the bishop is making him choose between God and his vow of obedience. A priest derives his faculties from the Bishop. When it comes to faculties, the bishop giveth and the bishop taketh away.

Perhaps he taketh away unjustly. I admit that happens all the time. We can argue about that. But a priest under obedience must conform to the legitimate demands of his superiors, at least in the external forum.

The Mass is an integral part of the Faith, but the Faith is greater than the Mass. The Mass is a gift from God. He can give the Mass and He can take away the Mass. He took away the Mass from England, save for a few isolated homes where it was said secretly. He took it away from Communist China, where a similar situation prevailed. And socialist Mexico. Remember Japan; God took the Mass away from Japanese Christians for centuries. But the Faith did not die there, because the Faith is not the Mass.

Though their treatment has been extraordinarily unjust, it wounds me when I hear members of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate seeking to be dispensed from their vows or transferred to other orders because their access to the Extraordinary Form has been curtailed. Do the have the right to do this? Yes. Is it the most perfect course of action? No. To whom did they take vows? Did they take vows to their order, or to a particular form of the Mass? Was their commitment to their order contingent upon what form of Mass was being used? I think of Jesuits like Fr. James Schall, Fr. Mitch Pacwa or the late Fr. John Hardon who remain loyal to their order despite the ungodly amount of insanity that continues to spew forth from the Society of Jesus. Who of us would not sympathize one hundred percent with Father Schall if he requested to be dispensed from his vows to the Society of Jesus? Yet he remains, as did Fr. Hardon. As they should.

Thus, while I love the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and while I see its growth, promulgation and eventual restoration as the only hope for the Church, I do not equate the Mass with the Faith itself in the absolute sense. This is why, although Catholics can fulfill a Sunday obligation by attending the Mass of the SSPX if there are  no other Masses available, the PCED states that the unavailability of an Extraordinary Form Mass in particular does not satisfy this requirement (Ecclesia Dei, N. 117/95). An SSPX Mass fulfills a Sunday obligation in case of necessity - like a Greek Orthodox Mass - but lack of any other EF Masses does not constitute the required necessity.

In other words, the sine qua non of our spiritual and sacramental life cannot be "the Extraordinary Form Mass no matter what or nothing." God gives the Mass and God can take it away, and those who think it is permissible to walk away from obedience - or seek dispensation from it - for the sake of continued access to the Extraordinary Form I think do not help the cause. If anything, it reinforces Trad stereotypes that we are all quasi-schismatics and precludes us from reaching out to groups who, although sympathetic to tradition, have not yet been adequately introduced to it.

It is certainly legitimate to seek legal redress to these problems through appropriate canonical channels. But, if they would take the more perfect route, it seems that until this is settled, the FFI priests and brothers should obey and just stay where they are at. Various priests around the country who have been suspended because of their love of the old Mass need to stay put and wait out the storm. We all need to stay put and wait out the storm.
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#2
(11-17-2014, 01:08 AM)ArturoOrtiz Wrote: http://unamsanctamcatholicam.blogspot.co...-with.html

I'm probably gonna lose readers with this one
by Boniface

If any priest I knew told me that he felt called by God to say only the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, I would be overjoyed.

But suppose that priest were commanded to cease saying the Extraordinary Form exclusively, or were put on "sabbatical" because of it. Were he to then tell me that he was contemplating transferring out of the diocese, leaving his vocation, or perhaps disobeying his superior, or going over to the SSPX, I would be appalled. Yes, appalled.

The Mass is extraordinarily important, but the Mass is not the Faith. The Mass is not synonymous with the Christian faith in such a way that a command to cease saying a particular form of the Mass constitutes pressure to deny the Faith. A priest who has been asked by his legitimate superior to stop saying Mass - of whatever form or rite - cannot make the argument that the bishop is making him choose between God and his vow of obedience. A priest derives his faculties from the Bishop. When it comes to faculties, the bishop giveth and the bishop taketh away.

Perhaps he taketh away unjustly. I admit that happens all the time. We can argue about that. But a priest under obedience must conform to the legitimate demands of his superiors, at least in the external forum.

The Mass is an integral part of the Faith, but the Faith is greater than the Mass. The Mass is a gift from God. He can give the Mass and He can take away the Mass. He took away the Mass from England, save for a few isolated homes where it was said secretly. He took it away from Communist China, where a similar situation prevailed. And socialist Mexico. Remember Japan; God took the Mass away from Japanese Christians for centuries. But the Faith did not die there, because the Faith is not the Mass.

Though their treatment has been extraordinarily unjust, it wounds me when I hear members of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate seeking to be dispensed from their vows or transferred to other orders because their access to the Extraordinary Form has been curtailed. Do the have the right to do this? Yes. Is it the most perfect course of action? No. To whom did they take vows? Did they take vows to their order, or to a particular form of the Mass? Was their commitment to their order contingent upon what form of Mass was being used? I think of Jesuits like Fr. James Schall, Fr. Mitch Pacwa or the late Fr. John Hardon who remain loyal to their order despite the ungodly amount of insanity that continues to spew forth from the Society of Jesus. Who of us would not sympathize one hundred percent with Father Schall if he requested to be dispensed from his vows to the Society of Jesus? Yet he remains, as did Fr. Hardon. As they should.

Thus, while I love the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and while I see its growth, promulgation and eventual restoration as the only hope for the Church, I do not equate the Mass with the Faith itself in the absolute sense. This is why, although Catholics can fulfill a Sunday obligation by attending the Mass of the SSPX if there are  no other Masses available, the PCED states that the unavailability of an Extraordinary Form Mass in particular does not satisfy this requirement (Ecclesia Dei, N. 117/95). An SSPX Mass fulfills a Sunday obligation in case of necessity - like a Greek Orthodox Mass - but lack of any other EF Masses does not constitute the required necessity.

In other words, the sine qua non of our spiritual and sacramental life cannot be "the Extraordinary Form Mass no matter what or nothing." God gives the Mass and God can take it away, and those who think it is permissible to walk away from obedience - or seek dispensation from it - for the sake of continued access to the Extraordinary Form I think do not help the cause. If anything, it reinforces Trad stereotypes that we are all quasi-schismatics and precludes us from reaching out to groups who, although sympathetic to tradition, have not yet been adequately introduced to it.

It is certainly legitimate to seek legal redress to these problems through appropriate canonical channels. But, if they would take the more perfect route, it seems that until this is settled, the FFI priests and brothers should obey and just stay where they are at. Various priests around the country who have been suspended because of their love of the old Mass need to stay put and wait out the storm. We all need to stay put and wait out the storm.

Are not Priests able to invoke Summorum Pontificum, which takes the Bishop out of the equation in that his permission is not required to say the TLM?

mda
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#3
(11-17-2014, 05:06 AM)missadeangelis Wrote: Are not Priests able to invoke Summorum Pontificum, which takes the Bishop out of the equation in that his permission is not required to say the TLM?

mda

That's the theory. With the stress on "theory." If a Bishop thinks you're too trad, you just get put on a "sabbatical" or something.
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#4
A bishop has the power to tell the priests of his diocese not to offer anything but the Novus Ordo Mass.  He can't forbid a priest from saying the old rite in private (although private Masses are not kosher anymore even juridically speaking after the Council) but he can certainly say that "pastorally" in his diocese it's too divisive, there's no need or whatever other reason he can come up with. Summorum Pontificum says a priest has the right to offer the Old Mass, but a priest is still sworn to obey his bishop who may tell him that he cannot offer it.
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#5
Quote:Are not Priests able to invoke Summorum Pontificum, which takes the Bishop out of the equation in that his permission is not required to say the TLM?

mda

They SHOULD respect it, but do they HAVE to?  No.  They have free will.  There are lots of things a bishop can do to a priest to make his life miserable if he wants.  He can remove him from his parish, close his parish, put him on sabbatical, give him a parochial assignment that is likely to make him fail (a notoriously progressive parish that will also isolate him, or whatever), give him no parish assignment at all- rather just a desk job at the chancery.  Priests must speak the truth, and live like they believe it.  Even so, if they've got a bishop who doesn't accept that truth, they need to know how to be careful.
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#6
(11-17-2014, 10:01 AM)formerbuddhist Wrote: A bishop has the power to tell the priests of his diocese not to offer anything but the Novus Ordo Mass. 

Would you care to prove this assertion?

The opinion adopted by thinking traditionalists (especially priests) in the 1970s was that Paul VI had not changed the law from Quo Primum, and therefore nobody was legally permitted to offer the New Mass.  Paul VI certainly didn't make any law permitting it, and a fortiori he didn't oblige anybody to use the new missal.  Instead, he ordered the new missal published and relied upon the bishops to impose it.  But any priest could - and many did - simply refuse on the basis that they had to obey the pope (Pius V) when the local bishop contradicted him.

You can review the question in Fr. Wathen's book, The Great Sacrilege.

The proof for this position, as Fr. Wathen gives it, is in the texts of promulgation of the new missal.  He wrote in 1971.  Since his time we now have two further proofs.  The first is Summorum Pontificum, which specifically rejects the idea that the true Mass was forbidden by Paul VI (which of course was one of the claims made by countless bishops when imposing the New Mass illegally on their priests). 

The second is the practice of the Church (or the "church" if you prefer).  From the practice of the Church, the proof is, I think, irrefutable:  No priest has ever, anywhere, been tried by an ecclesiastical court for refusing to offer the New Mass.  If Paul VI imposed it, some priest, somewhere, in the past forty-five years, would have been cited for breaching his law.  But this hasn't happened, and the reason is obvious once you examine the texts - there is no law to cite!

Any attempt to bring such a ase would result in total embarrassment for the Prosecution. 

Anyway, it would be wonderful if a priest such as one of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate or Fr Michael Rodriguez would take a stand on the law and openly demand that the law be cited which justifies the use of the New Missal.  What will happen is what has happened every other time this question has been brought to the point of testing - the Modernists will back down and use alternative methods to achieve their ends (e.g. moving a priest for unrelated - invented - reasons).  Fr Michael Rodriguez has the advantage that his bishop has already, as I understand it, explicitly removed him for this reason, so his bishop won't be able to change his reasons. 
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#7
It was not just about the Mass for the FFI.  It was also a power struggle and disobedience among some of the friars who met behind the backs of the superiors and who had been fomenting division for several years. Instead of leaving the institute, they found the opportunity to change it. They do not have the charism of founding nor can they give direction.  It was also an attack against the Mother of God with the stopping of the Days with Mary in Italy and the suppression of the Third Order there and the closing of several Marian shrines.  They stopped the books, etc.  And now of all the priests in the world, they are not allowed to offer the TLM nor can they leave to go under a bishop or to a new Order at this time if they are solemnly professed.  There was a reason why this missionary order was attracting so many incredibly holy young men.  The founder knew this was coming and so he and many others offer their great suffering with peace, knowing that the Immaculate One has need of their offering.  One day they will be restored.
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#8
Also the Catholic faith IS the Mass!  Obviously.  Since the Mass of the Ages was stolen and replaced with a more protestant liturgy---lex orandi, lex credendi--millions have left the faith. When the Mass was changed,  it happened that catechesis seemed to come to a screeching halt all over the world almost.  As St. Pio said, we can more easily live without the sun than without the holy Sacrifice of the Mass. And changing it has been disasterous. Truly, I think that the TLM is our future. From what I understand in places like France, it is only those of the traditional sense that are in the Churches to speak of. Only there is the growth.
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#9
We wouldn't even have traditional Catholicism today were it not for Archbishop Lefebvre. Sometimes it's necessary to take a stand.

“In the Church there is no law or jurisdiction which can impose on a Christian the diminution of his faith. All the faithful can and should resist what interferes with their faith… If they are faced with an order putting their faith in danger of corruption, there is an overriding duty to disobey… It is because we judge that our faith is endangered by the post-conciliar reforms and tendencies, that we have the duty to disobey and keep Tradition. Let us add this, that the greatest service we can render to the Church and to the successor of Peter is to reject the reformed and liberal church… I am not of that religion, I do not accept that new religion. It is a liberal, modernist religion. Christians are divided… priests no longer know what to do; either they obey blindly what their superiors impose on them, and lose to some degree the faith, or they resist, but with the feeling of separating themselves from the Pope. Two religions confront each other; we are in a dramatic situation, it is impossible to avoid a choice.” (Archbishop Lefebvre, 1986, “Open Letter to Confused Catholics”)
"Not only are we all in the same boat, but we are all seasick.” --G.K. Chesterton
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#10
Mmmm. With some qualifications, maybe.

The Faith can exist without the Mass... thousands of estranged Christians are witness to that.

I take exception to the notion that there is "traditional" Catholicism and some other sort of Catholicism. There is only Catholic Christianity (always the same in every time and place) and the plethora of other "beliefs" that are more or less perverse imitations.

Perhaps it would be better to say that the Mass is the complete and unsurpassable gift of the Faith. Mass is meaningless without the Faith.
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