Traditional Anglo-Papist

18 March 2006

Reform of the Reform?

Some people have asked questions about my ‘idea’ of Liturgical Development, particularly in relationship to the Sacramentary of Paul VI. Let me illustrate my point a little.

The Missal of Pius V, sometimes called the Tridentine Missal, was codified in 1570. The word which is important here is codified. The Missal of Pius V did not create a tradition or renew a tradition, it put into one unified book the liturgical life of the Western Latin Church. Those who could show a tradition of more then 200 years were allowed to continue that tradition. The rest received the codified tradition of the Missal of Pius V. This codified Missal of Pius V has been added to until its present form of the authorised Missale Romanum of 1962. Yes there are problems with the Missal: it does not allow for the celebration of saints who have been canonised by the Church in recent years. This Missal, in its present form, is stuck in 1962.

On the First Sunday in Advent, 30 November 1969, the Sacramentary of Paul VI became the normative rite of the Western Latin Church. It did not codify an already existing tradition; it rather created a new tradition of liturgical life. We now speak of the reform of the reform. A renewal of the tradition which was created by the introduction into the Western Latin Church of the Sacramentary of Paul VI.

One side collects a living tradition into a unified whole, the other present a tradition to the Church which is still in need of reform and renewal. Both are valid rites of the Western Latin Church. Yet one growths out of the worshipping community of faith and is codified by the authority of the Church, the other is imposed on the worshipping community by the authority of the Church.

I question the philosophy behind the creation of the Sacramentary of Paul VI. I do not question its validity and believe it can be celebrated reverently and beautifully.


Post a Comment

<< Home