So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter (2 Thess. 2:15). Guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the godless chatter and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, for by professing it some have missed the mark as regards faith (1 Tim. 6:21-22).

Saturday, February 6, 2016

What if...? Imagine restoration.

Sometimes it helps to detoxify and rid one's heart and soul of the pollution poured into one's existence by the current less-than-ideal circumstance of liturgies rent asunder by liturgists gone wild by becoming the proverbial ostrich with his head stuck in the warm sand of his own imagination. One can hope that the things imagined and hoped-for are consonant with the received Tradition of the Church.

What if... .
... a new religious order was established to promote the Ordinary Form of Holy Mass according to the mind of Holy Mother Church as articulated by the Second Vatican Council?

What if... .
... those who belong to such an order are canons regular who celebrate the Divine Liturgy with dignity and reverence and attention to detail?

What if...
... such an order established a foundation in a parish, perhaps beginning with three or more men who fostered the practice of chanting the Office in Latin and the celebration of Holy Mass mostly in Latin, as envisioned by the Second Vatican Council?

What if that Mass looked like this...
  • ad orientem worship
  • Scripture readings in the vernacular
  • the propers (Introit, Allelulia verse, Offertory and Communion chants) chanted in Latin and/or the vernacular
  • the Gradual Psalm chanted
  • the ordinary chants (Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus/Benedictus, Agnus Dei) chanted in Greek/Latin
... ?
What if...
... said men invited others to join them in their quest for authentic Catholic worship which is, first and foremost, focussed on God?

What if...
... said worship is, then, exclusively ad orientem according to the practice of the Church for nearly 2000 years and still assumed in the latest published Missal?

What if...
... communion was received on the tongue while kneeling?

What if...
... altar servers are prepared in the spirituality of the Mass, a spirituality consonant with the understanding of the Doctors of the Church?

What if...
... the priests wear beautiful vestments and the servers wore cassocks and surplices?

What if...
... there were no Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion?


  1. With a few exceptions, all of these things are to be found in the Anglican Ordinariate. Barring divine intervention, I don't think there's much hope of any of them appearing in the Ordinary Form. The Powers That Be, along with the vast majority of lay Catholics, seem to like it just as it is.

    1. Indeed, the Ordinariate is doing a lot to restore tradition and reverent liturgy in the Church. In my parish, almost everything is chanted, from Easter we will be singing the Salve Regina, the people line up along the edge of the altar for communion as in the EF, altar servers do indeed wear black cassock and surplice and priests wear elaborate vestments, and our priest is talking about using ad orientem during Lent. We do have EMHCs, but they offer the chalice only, and this is because most Sundays we have one priest and no deacon. Sometimes a priest from another parish con-celebrates, and then there are no EMHCs.

    2. For some reason my replies keep disappearing into oblivion. I suspect the age of my computer and the software are having something to do with the matter.

      That said, here goes attempt number two.

      Anonymous—Thank you for sharing your experiences. Bless the Lord! My hope and prayer is that with your (continuing) support and the support of others who, circumstances permitting, you might enlist to affirm your pastor's thought about Ad Orientem, your pastor will definitely offer Ad Orientem worship during Lent. Wouldn't it be amazing and appropriate if Mass at your parish could be offered Ad Orientem every liturgy? Your pastor has probably considered the idea of offering Ad Orientem at one Mass every Sunday. If your parish is like most, i.e., with two or more liturgies on a Sunday, one Mass could be offered AO regularly for those inclined to AO worship.

      Thanks again for the great news!

    3. Murray—I agree with your comments in every respect. My experiences on a committee have confirmed that, with one priestly exception, all other members lay and ordained have little formation in Catholic liturgical practice or have abandoned any appreciation for liturgical norms except those norms which accord with their warped inclinations, which is not to say the rubrics are warped. It would be more accurate to say that certain rubrics appear more malleable to some than they really are, and thus are more prone to distortion by supposedly informed people who possess little respect for Tradition and liturgical norms.

      Amen to the Anglican Ordinariate!


"A multitude of wise men is the salvation of the world(.)—Wisdom 6:24. Readers are welcome to make rational and responsible comments. Any comment that 1) offends human dignity and/or 2) which constitutes an irrational attack on the Catholic Faith will not go unchallenged. If deemed completely stupid, such a comment will most assuredly not see the light of day. Them's the rules. Don't like 'em? Move on.

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