9 December 2015

Who is entitled to use the Pope Francis Missal?

A valued clerical reader and supplier of comments raises a good point which has been made to me by quite a number of clergy. There is now a canonical lack of fairness and balance in the liturgical Law of the Latin Church. Any priest thereof, including of course any Ordinariate priest, has full liberty to celebrate the Roman Rite in both its Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms without seeking permission from anyone. In addition, the Ordinariate clergy can, of course, use the Ordinariate Rite. But that disadvantaged sector, Latin-priests-not-in-the-Ordinariate, poor victims of unfair discrimination, are not allowed to use the Pope Francis (i.e.Ordinariate) Missal, except in circumstances where they are ministering to an Ordinariate Group.

I do not even know if there are provisions for them to seek an indult to secure this privilege. That would, indeed, give a new meaning to the now obsolete expression "an Indult Mass"!

The only way I can see round this problem is for every well-disposed and sensible cleric who, very naturally, wishes for this privilege, to find, or create, within his parish, an Ordinariate Group for whom he could say Mass. It need only be a couple (preferably stable). As long as Father makes sure, when receiving Mr and Mrs Ex-Anglican into Full Communion, to have them canonically entered into the records of the Ordinariate, they will provide him with a canonical context for using the Ordinariate Form. (Actually, you only need one ex-Anglican, because just one ex-Anglican, even if he/she entered into Full Communion decades ago, can transfer to the Ordinariate and then carry members of his/her family into the Ordinariate with him/her.)

Oops. Mea culpa. I had forgotten. During this blessed Pontificate, we rather despise legal minutiae. We are not rubric-fixated. Anybody who still has feet can have them washed on Maundy Thursday. We do not run around devising heavy Burdens to lay upon people. Liberation!! Mercy!!! Everybody, especially those bishops who are most committed to Papa Bergoglio's ideologies, will be consumed with unalloyed joy when parish priests within their jurisdictions introduce the Pope Francis Missal to diocesan congregations without bothering about silly old Canon Law and its petty paltry piffling pettifogging prohibitions.

Just imagine it. Your Bishop or Archbishop is paying his regular visitatorial visit. You have got him togged up and have fitted his polyester pallium neatly round his shoulders. He had, just previously, Bergoglio fashion, been embracing the necessary clutch of repellent babies, so you have wiped him down carefully and now you are manoeuvring him towards the Sacristy door for the start of Mass. "Oh, by the way, archbishop", you purr nonchalantly as you offer him Holy Water, "there's been just one little change since you were here last. We're Ordinariate Rite here now ..."

Worth it, just for that, surely?

Go for it, Fathers! Don't risk waiting until Papa Bergoglio has retired to some argentinian favela and been replaced on the Throne of Moses by some neo-Pharisaical Gnostico-Pelagian!

I hope readers appreciate that the second half of this piece comes within the genre "Light Hearted Frivolity". LHF is one of God's greatest gifts. BTW, in answer to a comment on one of my other posts, I refer to the Missal as the Pope Francis Missal because I don't see why a Pope should be denied the credit for what happens on his watch. Each of them gets enough brickbats as the result of things for which they can't justly be held responsible. Perhaps I am even trying to burnish his image a bit in the eyes of fellow-traddies! I think he may yet surprise them!

18 comments:

David Aldred said...

"...just one ex-Anglican, even if he/she entered into Full Communion decades ago, can transfer to the Ordinariate"

Father, is there a defined method for doing this?

The Ordinariate website only refers to those "Anglicans and former Anglicans who ... are eligible to seek to enter the full communion of the Catholic Church through the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham", which I would interpret as excluding those who have already entered into that full communion by different means (since, having entered, they are clearly no longer eligible to enter unless they leave again in the meantime!)

Longinus said...

"Just imagine it....." A delectatio morosa of epic proportion! Best chuckle I've had in a very long time. BRAVO!

Catholic Left-winger said...

A good post, that turns into a dig at the Pope. Why can't you stop at the good advice on celebrating the Ordimariate Missal?

RSC+ said...

A few Missal questions, Father, if you don't mind.

1) Who is allowed to say the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar? I've seen it done where the entire congregation says the acolyte's responses, to great effect. Is it permitted in the Missal?

2) Does the Ordinary include the Secret prayers, said after the Orate Fratres?

3) I know the Missal contains the old Offertory prayers; they have certain practical implications. Is the water blessed with the prayer, "O God, who didst lay the foundation of man's being in wonder and honor, and in greater wonder and honor didst renew the same..." ? Are these prayers said aloud, or sotto voce?

Fr John Hunwicke said...

(1) Either; (2) Yes; (3) Yes and sotto.

jasoncpetty said...

...Throne of Moses...

I LOL'd. Too good.

GOR said...

There is something of Francis Urquhart in your LHF, Father, as in: “You might very well think that. I couldn’t possibly comment.”

Though, unlike the would-be PM, I’m sure it is inspired more by playful mischievousness than political malevolence.

Michael Leahy said...

Unlike "Catholic Left-winger", I detect little in terms of digs at Pope Francis. On the contrary, Father Hunwicke advises us to be prepared for a surprise (our God, after all, is One of surprises). I have a hunch Father is right.

JKH said...

David Aldred; any former Anglican Roman Catholic should simply apply for admission to the OOLW by contacting his nearest Ordinariate priest who will forward his request to the office of the Ordinary. There seems to be no bar in practice to a transfer from diocesan jurisdiction.

AnthonyMunday said...

So, we have a deviation between the rule and the practice. It is clear that the former excludes those who are already fully-accredited Catholics, and that (per the CDF) one may not join a personal ordinariate for reasons of personal preference.

Anyway, if I wish to join - and I might just - my own Anglican bona fides are a bit weak - “christened” at the parish, and when I had my wisdom teeth extracted in 1982 (it was the day Villa won the European Cup so the date sticks in my mind) I put “C of E” on the hospital consent form. So am I a former Anglican? If not, then surely I fail to qualify even under Year of Merky Rools!

frater raphael said...

Oh and what about e-anglican converts who converted before the whole Ordinariate Thing got off the ground and are now priests???? Is that enough "anglican-ness" to be able to use the new Missal, even if there are no lay ex-anglicans in the area.... which is my case....!??

Fr. Raphael

David Aldred said...

Anthony Munday: I'm not sure you're right, but I do stress the uncertainty.

The Decree of erection of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham actually states:

"1. The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham ipso iure possesses juridic personality and is juridically equivalent to a diocese. It includes those faithful, of every category and state of life, who, originally having belonged to the Anglican Communion, are now in full communion with the Catholic Church, or who have received the sacraments of initiation within the jurisdiction of the Ordinariate itself, or who are received into it because they are part of a family belonging to the Ordinariate."

Well, I'm one of the faithful who having originally belonged to the Anglican Communion, am now in full communion with the Catholic Church. As such, the Decree makes me automatically a member of the Ordinariate - it doesn't ask me to apply, or to do anything except satisfy the definition. I'm in, by definition, and not as a matter of personal preference but of Papal decree!

That would make the Ordinariate a very large and influential body in English Catholicism. An informal "convert count" of those on very many Diocesan and Parish committees will confirm this; we may not always be a majority, but were often a very significant minority. And that's just the laity!

But there never seems to have been an opportunity (or not a publicised one) for those of us who met the first definition of membership - the part I've highlighted - at the time of the erection of the Ordinariate (as opposed to those in the second two) to 'sign up', as it were, to be recognised as part of the Ordinariate.

AnthonyMunday said...

Thanks, David. I had not read the Decree of Erection. The part you highlight is most interesting; but I wonder if, after all, it is mainly descriptive in general terms, of what the Ordinariate is for, rather than a statement of eligibility per se. The Ordinariate website section “Join Us” seems couched in restrictive terms - those who are not already Catholics; and Fr Zuhlsdorf has an interesting July 2013 blogpost on this in a commentary on Pope Francis’ decision to widen eligibility for membership: http://wdtprs.com/blog/2013/07/pope-francis-changes-rules-for-who-can-join-anglican-ordinariates/. I’m not sure that membership can be automatic, strictly speaking; but I shall be delighted to stand corrected – particularly if I do wish to join!

Alex Smith said...

How extraordinarily ablist of you, Father, to assume only people who possess feet can have them washed on Maundy Thursday!
The Church needs to start being more inclusive and accepting of cripples and amputees!

Catholic Left-winger said...

Mr Leahy, you are generous in your interpretation, and may be right.

ansgerus said...

David, thank you for the Quote. maybe Bishop Williamson doesn't know yet that he became a member of the Ordinariate after having been expelled from the SSPX. Shouldn't we tell him? This might be an advantage when trying to visit f.i. Germany or Sweden.

David Aldred said...

Ansgerus, I'm not at all sure whether, and if so at what stages in his recent career, Bishop Williamson has actually been in full communion! It's all a bit bit confusing.

Kathleen1031 said...

Re Pope Francis, oh if only you were right, but I don't think so.