Tools for Learning the latin Mass Now On-Line
On September 14 every priest in the world who knows how may celebrate the Tridentine Mass. Many Catholics have prayed for its return, not only for its own sake, but for the influence it will have on celebrations of the Novus Ordo. Parishes offering both Masses report increased reverence, improved music, and wider use of Latin in the Novus Ordo Mass as a spillover effect of celebrating the Tridentine.
Pope Benedict’s letter to the bishops accompanying the motu proprio makes it clear that the 1962 Missal for the Tridentine Mass “was never juridically abrogated and, consequently, was always permitted.” It is a bittersweet victory as we recall the many Catholics who mourned the loss of the ancient Mass, but did not live to see its restoration. They come to mind when one reads the pope’s words: “Many people who…were faithful to the Pope and the Bishops, nonetheless also desired to recover the form of the sacred liturgy that was dear to them. This occurred above all because in many places celebrations were not faithful to the prescriptions of the new Missal.… arbitrary deformations of the liturgy caused deep pain to individuals totally rooted in the faith of the Church.
While the past cannot be undone, the pope now calls on the bishops to “make room for everything that the faith itself allows….What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful…. [The Bishop’s] role remains that of being watchful that all is done in peace and serenity.”
So now the challenge is for priests to learn the Latin Mass. A number of tools are available. An on-line tutorial for priests is available at www.sanctamissa.org. A number of events for both priests and laity can be accessed at musicasacra.com. The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter has conducted several priest workshops and plans another for the late fall. Watch www.fssp.com for developments. The Fraternity will also be offering a Solemn High Tridentine Mass at Mother Angelica’s Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, AL to be televised live on EWTN at 8:00 a.m. EST on September 14. Let us hope many learn to love the Mass of the ages.