The musings and meandering thoughts of a crotchety old man as he observes life in the world and in a small, rural town in South East Nebraska. My Pledge-Nulla dies sine linea-Not a day with out a line.
30 March 2023
The Anti-Liturgical Obsession Is an Ideology That Canonically Becomes a Tyranny
The Archbishop looks at the War on Tradition and how synodality doesn't seem to apply to Bishops who want to allow the TLM in their Dioceses.
By Archbishop Héctor Aguer, Archbishop Emeritus of La Plata
I celebrated my first Mass on November 26, 1972. I did it using the rite then in force, the one created by Paul VI, whose author was the Freemason Annibale Bugnini. The Mass was In Spanish, of course, though the secret prayers of the celebrant survived in Latin.
It had never occurred to me to resort to the "Mass of the Ages." The one we prayed at the Seminary every year of my formation, with the novelty that it was -- in the chapel of the philosophate, daily -- and versus populum. It never occurred to me to resort -- contrary to the prohibition that had been peacefully accepted -- to the old form. Not even after Benedict XVI accepted it as an extraordinary form of the Roman Rite by means of his motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.In spite of my theological and liturgical studies, which gave me a lucid understanding of the forgotten ritual, no ideological objections or nostalgia were imposed on me; the tradition was shelved, and perhaps out of laziness I did not dare to contradict it by critically judging the novelty that followed Vatican II.
Today, I think that Paul VI could have made some modifications to update the Mass of the Ages, which had been in force for centuries, rather than inventing a new rite of Mass. Objectively, I can measure the audacity of the new rite, an unexpected boast for many of progressivism; many centuries were discarded, thrown away in the whirlwind of changes.
I have appealed to this personal history to emphasize that I am free in my judgment: I continue to celebrate the Mass of Paul VI. This ecclesial position, however, allows me to gauge the damage done by the motu proprio Traditiones Custodes, recently reinforced by a "rescript".
Rome should ask itself why more and more priests and laity -- the latter above all -- are inclined, with veneration, toward the ancient rite. The anti-liturgical obsession is an ideology that canonically becomes a tyranny. Indeed, the prohibition of the Missal of John XXIII is not taken into account by young people, who aspire to a worship that responds to the truth of faith: worship of God, not of man. Rome, for its part, continues to cling to Karl Rahner's die anthropologische Wende (anthropological turn).
In the last decade, moreover, the aliturgical tradition of the Society of Jesus has come into play. The displacement of the liturgy gives rise to the imposition, in word and deed, of a relativistic moralism.
Anti-liturgical innovations have followed one another without interruption since the promulgation of the "new Mass". This new beginning signaled an unnecessary change. The Second Vatican Council's purpose of renewal could have been accomplished with slight modifications of the existing Roman Rite, or rather, with correction of the alterations produced in history. The conciliar purpose was significantly called instauratio, that is, restoration.
Crude dissidence arose from the 1970s onwards, in the face of Rome's stubbornness to hold to the new. Benedict XVI, by means of his motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, liberalized the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite; it was a Solomonic solution that could satisfy the aspirations of priests and faithful attached to Tradition, and at the same time give a solid foundation for the objections directed against the Mass promulgated by Paul VI.
This prudent and pastoral sensitivity allowed us to hope for a stable peace, with the return to obedience of numerous communities that lived in conflict with Rome. It is true that the differences with Vatican II went far beyond the liturgical order and extended to the doctrinal and juridical-pastoral field. The liturgical magisterium of the German Pope took up the theology of the liturgy developed by Cardinal Ratzinger, who followed in the footsteps of Romano Guardini and Klaus Gamber.
In light of all this, an unfortunate setback occurred with the motu proprio Traditiones Custodes, which eliminated the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite and imposed sharp conditions for granting the use of the Mass of the Ages. From this perspective, one can newly appreciate the gravity of Paul VI's actions, which initiated a new stage in all areas of ecclesial life, and gave room in the post-conciliar period for errors and mutilations worse than those sustained by the modernism of the early 20th century, condemned by St. Pius X.
The line opened by Francis's motu proprio has recently been ratified and aggravated by a "rescript" that imposes on bishops the obligation to obtain the pontifical placet before authorizing the use of the Mass of the Ages. This implausible imposition undermines the much-vaunted "synodality"; the authority of the bishops has been curtailed in an essential area of their munus as Successors of the Apostles.
It is to be feared that this antiliturgical pertinacity will once again give rise to attitudes contrary to the "unity" that Rome claims to profess. From the same source comes -- it seems to me -- the illusion of an ecclesial reform, which would have been requested by the conclave that elected the current pope. The Society of Jesus has always been a force for the reentrenchment of the Church in society, in competition with Freemasonry. The Vatican today, however, is full of Freemasons, and the pope tries to make use of them. I find wonderfully surprising the Pope's complacency in his decade of government, and the fiction of attributing successes to his collaborators; but a chronic problem of the Society has been that of humility.
Aliturgicism includes the devastation of what comes from Tradition in the liturgy of the Roman Rite. The antiliturgical obsession, which I have already mentioned, goes to the extreme of boycotting synodality. A bishop, in order to authorize a priest to celebrate with the Missal of John XXIII -- that is, the Mass of the Ages -- needs to ask permission from Rome. Such is the tenor of the recent rescriptum: a true pontifical tyranny that disqualifies the successors of the apostles from fulfilling their ministry in such a fundamental matter.
This new orientation allows the devastation of the liturgy [i.e., the Novus Ordo] to go forward with impunity. Again, I will mention that this freedom contradicts what the Council prescribes, in the Constitution on the Liturgy Sacrosanctum Concilium, namely, that no one, even if a priest, should change, add to, or subtract from the liturgical rites on his own initiative. The freedom of devastation goes hand in hand with the persecution of traditionalists.
A flagrant contradiction: traditionalists are persecuted, but the integration into the Roman Rite of percussive and dancing rhythms and the adoption of pagan, Hindu, or Buddhist rites, according to the principles of the New World Order vying with Freemasonry, is consented to. In visits to various nations, it is deemed acceptable to introduced into the liturgy tribal rites of the ancestral culture of the visited peoples. Thus, the deformation of divine worship borders on idolatry.
This attitude is repeated in many countries, as a perversion of interreligious dialogue. In 2019, the Pope signed in Abu Dhabi the Document on Human Brotherhood for World Peace and Common Coexistence, in which it is said: "Pluralism and diversity of religion, color, sex, race and language are a wise divine will, by which God created human beings. This divine Wisdom is the origin from which derives the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different." God the Creator would then be the author of polytheism!
This affirmation is tantamount to renouncing the essential and original mission of the Church, as expressly stated in the Gospel: "Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned" (Mk 16:15-16). Such a renunciation can only be seen as apostasy.
The same attitude is found in 2020, in the acceptance of the proposal for a day of prayer and fasting of all religions on May 14. The Pontiff referred to the acceptance of the proposal: "I have accepted the proposal of the High Committee for Human Fraternity that next May 14 the believers of all religions unite spiritually in a day of prayer and fasting and works of charity." It is evident in this way that the Church ignores its original mission of announcing the Gospel of salvation and joins the world polytheistic concert, thus participating, as one of the religions in the New World Order advocated by Freemasonry. This would not be possible if the Vatican were not already infiltrated by Freemasonry. From this perspective, the incorporation of pagan rites into the liturgy can be understood. It also explains the persecution of the traditionalists, who by their refusal hinder the full insertion of the Church into this New World Order; thus the Church is heading towards the reign of the Antichrist. The confusion of the believers is the consequence; it is the mysterium iniquitatis deployed by the devil.
The Abu Dhabi document implies the apostasy of the Catholic faith to adhere -- as I have already written -- to the New World Order. There is no compatibility between the latter and the Christian faith; the confusion into which believers are thrown could not be greater. This contrast appears in every intervention of the Pontiff, which proves that this is how he understands the mission of the Church, and this is how his task of government is understood.
A very clear example is found in the letter addressed to him by Argentine politicians on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of his pontificate: "We wish to express our admiration for your work in favor of Humanity [thus, with a capital letter in the original], in particular, of excluded persons and poor peoples, your firm defense of world peace and your permanent promotion of an integral Ecology [the capital letter in the original], which allows us to hear the cry of Mother Earth and of the Human Being [polytheistic and Masonic language] in the face of destructive situations that threaten peoples and nature."
In this context, the anti-liturgical passion against the "Mass of the Ages," in which the true faith in and coherence with the will of Jesus Christ and the traditional mission of the Church shines with clarity, is explained.
A new understanding of synodality is now insinuated: if a bishop wants to authorize a priest to celebrate the ancient Mass, he must ask Rome's permission. We are dealing here with an obsession that no longer has bounds.