27 July 2010

Liturgical liceity in the Church of England

I invite those interested to read the Introduction to my ORDO. I show how pretty well anything can be squared with the canons of the Church of England and their actual deployment by bishops both individually and collectively. In addition ...

1. Anglican Catholics have long taken the view that since the provinces of Canterbury and York are provinces of the Western Latin Church, detached by historical accident from the rest of the Western Latin Church, the Liturgy de jure of those provinces is what we used to call the Western Rite. I wrote about this in last year's Pusey House Journal.

2. I am asked about the English Missal. I subdivide.
2a. Quoad textum Latinum of the Roman Missal, which lies behind the rite in the English Missal, that is licit by virtue of the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum. In principle, the celebrant does not need any authorisation, whether from the pope or his bishop or anyone else. Mind you, I would have thought that a newly priested curate might want to carry his incumbent with him in this matter.
2b. Quoad versionem Anglicam of those Latin originals in the English Missal, this has the sanction of immemorial usage and has never been reprobated by the competent authority, viz the Sacred Congregation of Rites and its successor body. O'Connell writes about usages of this sort becoming licit even if they are contra legem or praeter legem. The praxis in the 'Anglican Use' parishes, and the expectation expressed in Anglicanorum coetibus that liturgical elements of the Anglican Patrimony will be lawful in Ordinariates, indicates that the Church's supreme legislative authority currently intends, not to reprobate this liturgical inheritance, but to formalise it.
2c. Quoad formulas a Thoma Cranmer confectas, I would apply again the principles in 2b, accompanied by an appeal to the principle of Necessitas.


A correspondent sneers at liturgical practices in churches like mine. I think the above pretty well covers that, too. I use, on Sundays, the Novus Ordo Order of Mass employing Prayer Book/Common Worship translations into 'Tudor' English when available, the ICEL formulae (with you changed to thou etc.) when necessary, and the Canon from the Book of Divine Worship. I am impenitent.


Little Black Sambo said...

A correspondent sneers at liturgical practices in churches like mine.
Show us this knave. Pack him off to Damian Thompson's blog.

Anonymous said...

I have total confidence in your liturgical expertise and instincts, Father, but we lesser mortals need authorised forms that we can simply read out of the book without getting lost in a jungle of alternatives.

Br. Stephen, O.Cist said...

Here is a question for you, most learned Father, that a few of us have been kicking around and that recently appeared at the new site, Anglican Patrimony:

Do those parishes that pull out their older editions of the English Missal and use the older rites of Holy Week also act licitly? Are folded chasubles a legitimate part of the Anglican Patrimony?

For the last two generations, many Anglo-Catholics have seen themselves as preserving not only their own patrimony but also that of the wider Church. How does this fit in with the Ordinariates?

Anonymous said...

Of course, this type of thing makes the legal positivists pucker and "hit the head"; but if Rome won't punish an archbishop's balloon mass why would she punish an English/American Missal mass? C'est magnifique!

Joshua said...

Cranmerian prayers: those that, mutatis mutandis, appear in The Book of Divine Worship have thereby due recognition in forma specifica from Rome; I think the only major prayers that don't are - of course - the Prayer of Consecration and the Prayer of Oblation.

Fr John Hunwicke said...

I should have added that the S Thomas's rite was not confected by me but is the result of evolution.

Sui Juris said...

I have myself been subject of criticism for "pick & mix" liturgy by people who don't understand the situation of the Church of England. (And that includes both Church of England people as well as others). The fact is that unless one is pure 1662 (and not even then, in fact) the Church of England expects, encourages and requires clergy to pick and mix.

The only difference between me (and Fr H) and some others is that I pick according to my best judgement of the tradition and the edification of my people; other people pick according to what the Church House publishers happen to like.

Bernard Brandt said...

Dear Fr. Hunwicke (Father, bless!):

I am a newcomer to your excellent website. Nonetheless, I have come quickly to admire both your eloquence and your acumen.

But as one who dwells with Orthodoxy and Russian Catholicism, and who picks and chooses between the better English translations (e.g., Isabel Hapgood's, Mother Mary's and Bishop Kallistos Ware's, and Archimandrite Ephrem Lash's) in doing musical settings, I am in agreement with your impenitent ways. Do please keep up the good work.