8 November 2009

Ordo Ordo Ordo Ordo

I would be very hurt if I thought that any reader had not already bought a copy of my 2010 Ordo. But I would like to commend an Ordo which is not mine - although it is compiled by a friend of mine.


will enable you to order the S Lawrence Press Ordo.

This fine and elegantly produced ORDO provides information about the Roman Calendar and Rite as it was left on the Accession of Pius XII (although there are just two or three ... I'll come clean: I've only spotted two ... small indications that the world did not end in 1939). That cut-off is very well chosen; the Pontificate of Pius XII is the beginning of Bugnini. That gentleman began his wrecking career as Secretary of the Commission which 'reformed' the rites of Holy Week. This is commonly thought of as a mere detail; but it is not. Holy Week and the Easter Vigil are the most significant points of the Christian Year, and Bugnini changed them in ways even more radical and subversive than he subsequently did the rest of the Roman Rite. The Bug***i got away with it because - we had better be honest - the liturgical rites of Holy Week had come to be largely ignored by the great majority of the laity. They were not of obligation and they were lengthy and they were opaque.

Pius XII was not the Start of the Rot. Pius X changed the rubrics regarding the Calendar. Thus, before his time, a large number of Sundays were obscured by the permanent fixing onto the xth Sunday of Ymonth of lollipop celebrations which superseded them (see my Holy Relics post on November 5). Pius X put the lollipops onto fixed days and restored the Sunday Masses; but, out of pastoral sensitivity and an instinct for a Hermeneutic of Continuity he allowed the Lollipop masses to continue to be said on the Sundays they previously owned (the S Lawrence ORDO gives these optional survivals of the previous Baroque Calendar).

Pius X also messed up the distribution of the Breviary Psalter, eliminating, for example, psalms 148-149-150 from their permanent position at daily Lauds. Since this usage had been part of the worship of devout Jews in the time of our Incarnate Lord, a lot of liturgists were rather grumpy about it. And even Papa Sarto was not the first to breach the really ancient continuities; in the 1620s Urban VIII completely rewrote the Breviary Hymns to make them sound as if they had been written by the pagan Augustan poet Horace. Vatican II rightly ordered the ancient texts to be restored. As I have explained in recent posts (have you tried the SEARCH engine on this blog?), the invention of printing was the crucial factor which made such papal arrogance a viable possibility, and led to its apotheosis in the post-Vatican II disasters. God bless Benedict XVI for beginning a process of rolling it all back.

And the S Lawrence ORDO will also show you the full old system of commemorations. You see ... but no: I've written on that also - on the synchronic and diachronic unities involved - not long ago. Try the SEARCH facility!

If you get the S Lawrence ORDO and constantly revisit my former posts through SEARCH, you will begin to discover just how revolutionary and discontinuous the Missal of 1962 is; and how unworthy to be treated in a fundamentalist way. That was something Mgr Lefebvre got wrong.


Anonymous said...

"That was something Mgr Lefebvre got wrong."

He and a host of others.

I am reminded of this dis-junction every time I talk with friends that use the '62 (I use 1950 or 1940/1). Though I think the rot began with Leo XIII's truncation of the Easter Sequence. He removed:

Credendum est magis soli Mariae veraci Quam Judaeorum turbae fallaci.

By so doing, a vital bit of Gospel truth was cast away and the musical form was abruptly altered.

Shall we start a new slogan:

"Friends don't let friends say the Novus Ordo (or the '62 missal) (or the 55 Holy Week) or etc."

Conchúr said...

As far as I recall, Mgr Lefebrve plumped for the 1962 Missal specifically to root out the sedevacantists in the SSPX who used the pre '62 books to illustrate the fact that they did not accept John XXIII as a true pope.

Again as far as I recall Lefebrve's personal preference was for the pre '55 Missal.

Rubricarius said...


By that logic did Mgr. Lefebvre believe Paul VI was not a pope?

Mgr. Lefebvre actually started off following some of Paul VI's changes and used some variant of the 1965-67 rite when Econe was first founded. It was only later that he adopted 1962. I would welcome any concrete evidence that he favoured anything older - even getting him to say the last Gospel was very difficult.

However from the beginning the SSPX in England, Germany and parts of the USA used the 'pre-Pius XII' liturgy. Many clergy, such as the then district superior in the UK, Fr. Edward Black, carried on using the 'pre-Pius XII' rubrics after the 1983 crisis and were never held the sedevacantist view.

davidforster said...

1. Was it really Leo XIII who removed that verse from the Victimae Paschali? I thought it was Pope St Pius V in 1570. I'd be interested to know for sure on this point.

2. Like Rubricarius, I'd be interested to know precisely why Mgr Lefebvre plumped for 1962 rather than 1965. Perhaps it was simply the fact that most traddy priests were using it, or something older. SSPX priests, especially on the continent, are well known for introducing vernacular hymns and readings. The problem with the Oyster Bay group wasn't so much that they used pre-62 but the fact that they refused to use the 62 and condemned it out of hand. As I remember, Fr Black used a curious combination of 62 and pre-62 in the Easter ceremonies.

Rubricarius said...

David Foster,

You are quite correct. I should have written "Fr. Black...carried on using the 'pre-Pius XII' rubrics for most of the year." He did indeed do a 'pic N mix' for Holy Week and celebrated Joe the Worker Day rather than SS Philip and James on May 1st.

I went to an old friend's funeral yesterday at the SSPX church in London. That was a curious mixture of rites: bows to the altar Cross, the traditional extended kneeling in a Requiem and the Confiteor before the distribution of communion. Then from the 1962 books the vox conveniens and omission of the last Gospel preceding the Absolution. The classic came after the sermon(!) criticising the 'modern Church' and the importance of keeping tradtional praxis ending with the announcement "Those wishing to receive communion...must have been fasting for ONE hour."

Anonymous said...

Thank you, David, for the correction; it was Trent. I'm not sure why I had it wrong in my memory? I recall it had to do with once seeing the offending text in a pre-Leo post-Pius missal - I can't recall? Interestingly, this Sequence is set for Friday in Easter Week in the Sarum use, and different Sequences are used the other days of the octave.