Letter of the law of faithThe press seems to be in a tizzy over the Holy Father's new Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum and the accompanying explanatory letter to the bishops of the world. To hear some people tell it, the Pope is completely against the reforms of the Second Vatican Council-something he himself refutes in the text of the document.
What the Pope does do is reaffirm realities that Catholics the world over have forgotten about the way that we worship as a people.
The first reality that the Pope deals with is the fact that the Church never abandoned the traditional Mass that was codified at the Council of Trent, the Tridentine Mass. Because of this, the Pope takes the position that if enough of the faithful request the use of the Missal of 1962, the last under which that form of the Liturgy was promulgated, then they have a right to it. Further, Benedict makes the decree that the priests celebrating that form of the Sacred Liturgy must have the knowledge of Latin and of the Missal necessary to do so.
Rather than abandon Mass in the vernacular tongue, the Pope affirms that Mass in the tongue of the people is the ordinary norm, but that the people have a right to the traditional Mass (and Benedict affirms that it remains the traditional Mass of the Roman Rite, but it is used in extraordinary, not ordinary norms), and its use should not be discouraged.
This is not crazy my friends-this is part of the faith of the Church.
Labels: Holy Mother Church