Liturgy of the Hours

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The liturgical reform was a victory for frivolity

Leading Italian journalist speaks out against liturgical reform and for the Latin Mass.

Cathcon translation of
Die Liturgiereform war ein Sieg der Frivolität

The direction was false: "Have you ever seen a general or leader who marches backwards."

"I have no doubt that the Tridentine rite is the true liturgy," the journalist Michele Mirabella (64) has said to the Italian website 'Papanews'.

Mirabella is a well-known television presenter on Italian state television. He loves the Latin language: "A frivolous modernism has meant that in recent times even the Church has neglected the Latin language " - he says.

The outriders of the Second Vatican Council claimed to be able to rationalise what by nature cannot be rationalised:

"Therefore, frivolity and a tendency to the banal too often triumphed, while in the old Rite everything was more sober, purer and more elegant."

For Mirabella, the liturgy is order, elegance and harmony: "These are properties that the old Rite perfectly and completely preserved."

The journalist has known both forms of the Mass - the old Latin Mass as well as Mass in the vernacular: "I do not deny that I prefer the first."

He is personally convinced that the priest should look towards the tabernacle, to the east,: "Because it is Christ, not His servant, who leads the people of God."

"Have you ever seen a general or leader who marches backwards." - Mirabella asked the interviewing journalists.

During a celebration of Mass, the priest should turn his back to the people and towards the Tabernacle. His face should rather be giving attention to the radiance and glory of Jesus Christ:

"I am speaking not piously, but as a thinking layman."

Mirabella does not understand how it is possible not to love Gregorian Chant.

Victory of the banal
Further, he strikes out for the Latin language: "Those who claimed that one understands little because of the use of Latin during Mass are deceivers "

If this really would be a problem, one could teach more Latin in schools:

"The pious old woman of yesteryear understood perhaps no Latin. But she participated with Faith, honesty and respect in the great mystery of the Mass. "

Because the old Rite is for him sublime, uplifting and beautiful: "Those who condemn the Mass have not understood."

The journalist defended the old Rite, in contrast to the "transitory and empty" ideas that have spread among the Faithful after the Second Vatican Council:

"It is the translation of the Missals into the new language, which is frankly, colourless, ugly and inelegant, which makes me quite sick."

The use of guitars and other instruments in anti-liturgical worship Mirabella holds to be a "blasphemy":

"I have nothing against the guitar itself, but I think the improvised concerts during the Eucharist to be an insult to the aesthetic taste. They limit the spirituality. "

TheMotu proprio to free the Latin Mass, Mirabella calls an "act of justice and freedom". He calls for progressives and modernists, to be tolerant and to respect others.

The Pope believes the journalist to be an "extraordinary intellectual - a person with a huge education."

Mirabella expressly stressed that he did not want to make comparisons.

But he said that the late Pope John Paul II is rightly praised for the many documents of this great Pope which had been drafted with the valuable assistance of the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.

Modernism- beached, upside down and about to be deflated.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

My First Tridentine Mass Experience

I had the chance of attending a Mass celebrated in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite for the very first time yesterday morning at the Parish of the Lord of the Divine Mercy at Sikatuna Village, Quezon City. I was really excited to attend a Mass in EF ever since I got hooked in various sites and blogs in the internet about the traditional Mass and especially after Pope Benedict's motu proprio Summorum Pontificum. I think, what made me interested in the traditional form of the Mass is my traditional upbringing as a Catholic - growing up with my great grandmother and grandmother at home. As I mentioned before, I had this "Maikling Missal Panlinggo" of my great grandmother and another "Missal Panlinggo" published by the Dominicans with the changes made by the 1969 Instruction.

Back to the Mass at PLDM, I want to share some thoughts and observations.

The church was quite smaller that I thought it was (from the photos) but nonetheless, a fitting place for worship. I arrived almost 7:30 and (aside from the people and vehicles passing on the road beside the church) the atmosphere was that of prayerful silence.

It was nice to see the women in the congregation wearing their veils, scapulars, medals and bringing with them a collection of their favorite prayer books - in our parish in Amadeo (Cavite) some elderly women maintains this practice. The respect for the Blessed Sacrament in the Tabernacle is shown by the traditional genuflection (or at least trying to) when passing at the center or before and after entering the pews. I can only wish that the server (probably one of the parish staff) did the same on preparing the altar and lighting the candles.

The congregation was attentive to the Mass. Pious acts and devotions, such as the rosary, veneration of the images of saints, or the stations of the cross were done before and after the Mass. I think the celebration was a 'dialogue Mass'. In this way there is a sense of 'active (or actual) participation' both externally (shown in the postures of standing during the entrance and the Gospel reading, kneeling for most of the time and especially during the Canon and sitting while listening to the homily) and internally (with the priest reciting the prayers inaudibly and the faithful, aware that the prayers are recited in their behalf, pray in their own silently). And of course, the 'ad orientem' posture (that is, facing the 'liturgical East') showing both the priest and the faithful in a position ready and hoping to meet Lord.

The vestments, Fr. Zerrudo was wearing reminds me of the words 'noble simplicity' as was obvious - no lavish ornamentations yet beautiful.

The homily (for that Mass on an Ember Wednesday) was brief and meaningful; no ambiguous elaborations.

The silent Roman Canon, which before I thought was one of the things to be revised in the Mass is the EF, enabled us to participate by allowing a silent atmosphere for uniting our hearts and minds in the prayer of the priest. Since I have some knowledge on the basic structure of the Canon, I, mentally, prayed for the Pope, the bishops, the clergy, the universal Church, my loved ones and friends on the silent part after the Sanctus and before the consecration in which I focused myself in the acts of the Lord. I prayed for my deceased loved ones, including my great grandmother, on the part after the consecration and before the Doxology. During the entire Canon, I keenly observed the signs of the cross made by the priest with his hands and while holding the body of the Lord (during the Doxology). It was truly an encounter with "my Lord, and my God".

I was not prepared to receive communion (mea culpa) so I just knelt in my pew and prayed while watching other people receiving very reverently.

After the Mass, the wonder of that extraordinary 'meeting' with the Lord is still with me. I am looking forward in attending next week. It was such a wonderful and blessed experience.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Our Lady of Lourdes

.- Before reciting the Angelus today, Pope Benedict XVI spoke with the faithful about the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, which is tomorrow.

“This year the beginning of Lent coincides with the 150th anniversary of the apparition of Lourdes. Four years after the proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception by Blessed Pius IX, Mary appeared for the first time on February 11, 1858 to St. Bernadette Soubirous in the grotto at Massabielle. After successive apparitions accompanied by extraordinary events, the Holy Virgin revealed to the young visionary in the local language, ‘I am the Immaculate Conception,’” the Pope recalled.

He added that, “The message of the Madonna, which continued to spread from Lourdes, recalled the words of Jesus which he announced at the beginning of his public ministry: convert and believe in the Gospel, pray and do penance.”

Pope Benedict also reminded all present that the annual World Day of the Sick, celebrated each year on February 11, is directly linked to the Blessed Virgin’s promise to care for the many sick that come to Lourdes.

Some images from the shrine's official site.


Mary, you showed yourself to Bernadette
in the crevice of the rock.
In the cold and grey of winter,
you brought the warmth, light and beauty
of your presence,

In the often obscure depths of our lives,
in the depth of the world where evil is so powerful,
bring hope,
return our confidence!

You are the Immaculate Conception,
come to our aid, sinners that we are.
Give us the humility to have a change of heart,
the courage to do penance.
Teach us to pray for all people.

Guide us to the source of true life.
Make us pilgrims going forward with your Church,
whet our appetite for the Eucharist,
the bread for the journey, the bread of life.

The Spirit brought about wonders in you, O Mary :
by his power, he has placed you near the Father,
in the glory of your eternal Son.
Look with kindness
on our miserable bodies and hearts.
Shine forth for us, like a gentle light,
at the hour of our death.

Together with Bernadette, we pray to you, O Mary,
as your poor children.
May we enter, like her, into the spirit of the Beatitudes.
Then, we will be able, here below,
begin to know the joy of the Kingdom of Heaven
and sing together with you :
Magnificent !

Glory to you, Virgin Mary,
blessed servant of the Lord,
Mother of God,
dwelling place of the Holy Spirit!


Friday, February 8, 2008

Babies' way of saying "Thank you, Mom!"

I got this from the Curt Jester:

London, Feb 7, 2008 / 04:41 am (CNA).- A British woman’s twin girls saved her life when, while still in the womb, they kicked free a tumor growing in their mother’s uterus, the Daily Mail reports.

Though advised she needed to abort the twins so she could be treated for cancer, the mother avoided harsh cancer treatment so her babies could be born.

Michelle Stepney, 35, was expecting twins when she went to a hospital with a suspected miscarriage. The doctors realized that she had cervical cancer, saying that the kicking of the twins had dislodged a tumor.

Had the tumor not been dislodged, the cancer may not have been discovered in time for successful treatment.

After the discovery of the cancer, Stepney’s doctors told her that she would need to undergo chemotherapy and a hysterectomy. To do this, she would need to abort the twins.

Stepney refused. "I couldn't believe it when the doctors told me that the babies had dislodged the tumor," she said, according to the Daily Mail.

"I'd felt them kicking, but I didn't realize just how important their kicking would turn out to be."

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Lenten Fare (2008)

From Kansas City Catholic:

Lenten Fare (2008)

Wednesday of this week is Ash Wednesday, the day Catholics across the world attend Mass and begin the penitential season of Lent. And while Ash Wednesday is not a holy day of obligation and the reception of the ashes is not a sacrament, the day and the act are important ones in the liturgical year.

To begin the season of Lent, Catholics fast and abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday (and abstain from meat on Lenten Fridays) and often commit to a sacrifice or act that serves as a way of deepening their faith during Lent’s 40 days. The Catholic observance of Ash Wednesday is confusing to some of our Christian brothers and sisters. The church signs below explain the day–and the season of Lent–in their own way.