The Cruel and Incoherent Further Restrictions on the Traditional Latin Mass

Fr. Gerald E. Murray at the Catholic Thing writes:

The document Responsa ad dubia (“Responses to doubts”) of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments (CDW) on certain provisions of Pope Francis’ Motu Proprio Traditionis Custodes (TC) just published Saturday, is, plain and simple, a brutal exercise of raw ecclesiastical power in pursuit of the elimination of the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) and the other sacramental rites that, with it, constitute a liturgical unity. It expands the clampdown on the TLM initiated by Pope Francis in TC. (Available by clicking here.)

The faithful who find spiritual nourishment in these liturgical rites are shown no pastoral charity or generosity of spirit in this new order of things. They are unjustly accused of fomenting disunity in the Church by virtue of their attachment to the older rites. In his prefatory letter, CDW prefect Archbishop Arthur Roche states: “As pastors we must not lend ourselves to sterile polemics, capable only of creating division, in which the ritual itself is often exploited by ideological viewpoints.” This claim about the TLM is never illustrated in his letter. It is asserted as if it were a fact plainly evident to all. It is not.

Who are the nefarious people promoting ideological viewpoints that exploit the older ritual? Where and how is this being done, and to what purpose? By what definition is a viewpoint an “ideology,” as distinct from a set of principles? When are polemics sterile and not fruitful? Polemics are regularly used these days by many in the Church to denounce all sorts of things such as man-made global warming and anti-immigrant policies in various nations. Do these polemics qualify as sterile, causing division?

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