I surely do love the crazies. Fr. Pat of the Sacred Heart Church in Missouri writes in the parish bulletin so that we can all read his insightful musings on the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum. I will try to refrain from too many comments as it would just be too easy. I will however highlight some of the more, shall we say, interesting parts.Read it and weep, laugh, whatever. (Ht to Kansas City Catholic)
As the Bishop goes through the process to see if the document concerning the Sacraments in Latin applies to the situation in our diocese, I offer the following observations.
1) Some people wrote a letter to the Bishop requesting Latin. They have no parish identity but belong to various parishes. And some seem to have been going to Masses offered in Latin. However, the priest is not in union with Rome. If all these people belonged to one parish and had a stable presence in ONE parish over a number of years, one could think that they might constitute a recognizable though selfish request.
2) If they were to constitute a “floating” parish with their imported Latin Mass priest, they would not fit the parochial model for a diocese to recognize.
If a “shadow” Church were to be established, would it do its own RCIA? Would it accept only those who want Latin? In time we have every right to expect that those who want Latin would die out. I would say anyone who was born after 1968 when the vernacular was introduced for the entire Mass should not be allowed to join such a group if God forbid such should be allowed.[This is absolutely priceless. Fr. Pat thinks that by not allowing anyone born after 1968, which I am sure was a very pivotal year for Fr. Pat, that all the old people who want this would soon die off. Priceless.]
3) The people who want Latin have never accepted Vatican II, neither in fact nor in spirit. [That is a pretty broad brush you are painting with there buddy!]They have shown unwavering disobedience [And exactly what kind of disobedience are you currently exhibiting Father?] and would relate to a quasi-heretical group (the Nebraska group) rather than their own Bishop.
4) Speaking of Bishops, I would think any Bishop worth his salt would complain to Rome that their authority is diminished by the Pope’s Motu Proprio. Is it then going to rely upon the priest to make a decision that has rightly belonged to the Bishop alone? [I wonder how many other times the Fr. Pat has come down in favor of more episcopal authority? He certainly doesn’t respect Papal authority.]
If the priest is going to become an authority in his own right, [wait for it…..wait for it…] might he not also make the decision to get married? [Oooh. There it is!] To conduct his parish affairs outside the influence of the Bishop?
5) In my opinion, the people who have been at the core of wanting Latin have been disobedient to the Church vis-à-vis Vatican II. Is this the reward for their disobedience? If this is the case, obedience is not worth the trouble. [Wow. ](During the years that the changes were being introduced many of us priests rightly sweated over the best way to introduce those changes. When properly explained, the changes were successful.) May the priest then not create his own Mass in any way he wishes? What if he thinks he should celebrate Mass in “tongues”? Compose his own Eucharistic prayers? [So celebrating the Mass as it was for 1500 years is the same as making it up as you go along? What is he talking about?]
6) The Pope seems to be out of touch with the ordinary church. [Fr. Pat seems to be out of touch with planet earth!]He seems to be acting in good will, but giving into the “letter writers” who have been complaining for years, he will [Cue dramatic music] create a shadow church and cause great divisions in every diocese. Such will be that when churches are built, they would have to accommodate both rites and seminarians would have to take courses in Latin. During many centuries seminarians have fallen through the cracks and not been able to reach the goal of the priesthood because Latin was too difficult for them. This was a scandal! To return to such a course would be lunacy!
7) The nature of the language we worship in is crucial. Worship language must be immediate…namely, not translated in the head – Latin would speak to the intellect at bestand that is not good enough. The language of worship must speak to the heart as well as the head.
8) The gospel is meant to enlighten and challenge us! It is my opinion that the use of Latin should have been done away with hundreds of years ago. This is one of the things that Martin Luther was right about. After WWII Christians worldwide shook their heads in sober sadness and declared that Christianity had failed in Europe because it had let Hitler and his hateful and mad ways to succeed. [What?!?!?!] Some very holy people said: “No, Christianity was just never tried.” I fault the use of Latin as partly responsible for the rise and success of Hitler and his neo-pagan mythology which was obviously the religion he was supporting and that actually managed to capture the German imagination.[What??? I mean What??? Somebody get this man his medication!!! Stat!]. I say the people, because of Latin never were confronted by the gospel [Yeah, nobody ever got evangelized until 1970]. The Mass and the sacraments never really reached down deep into the soul. There are some notable exceptions of priests and laity and some very heroic ones as well as Protestant theologians who confronted the lies of Hitler – of course, they were gotten rid of.
9) As soon as the Romance languages attained literary status they should have become the language of worship and sacrament.
10) Saint Paul says that it is better to pray to God with ten words we understand than to pray with thousands of words we don’t understand. He says, too, that some people want their ears to be caressed by all they hear, that they are itching for what pleases them. They are being misled by the power of evil.
More next week!