The Latin Mass is back in the news. On Friday, the Church released the long awaited instruction on the Latin Mass following the ground-breaking issuance of the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.
There are many fine analyses of the instruction (here and here for instance.) The document takes a few minutes to read and many more minutes to digest, so if I may, let me provide the Reader’s Digest Version.
Pope to Church: You know I wrote in Summorum Pontificum four years ago that priests who want to say the Traditional Latin Mass–can? And you know how I wrote that a group who wants it can request it and that that request should be granted if all possible? And you know how I wrote that I want the two forms of the Latin Rite to stand side by side and mutually enrich one another? I really really meant it. And for those loophole seeking Bishops who didn’t get it the first time, I will now provide some legalese to close most of those loopholes. Peace out!
I am paraphrasing of course. Now with that out of the way, I want to focus on a part of the instruction that will likely be overlooked or ignored by most. Actually, this part of the document was in Summorum Pontificum as well, but not much hay has been made of it. I want to make some hay. So let me quote from the instruction….