5 July 2021


The Archbishop of Dijon has, apparently, revealed that PF intends to enjoin Concelebration upon all presbyters of the Roman Rite.

I had better be honest here.

(1) About three years ago, I concelebrated the Novus Ordo with a fine young priest who was being hounded out of his parish by bigotted 'liberals'. I did it as a sign of my solidarity with him, and I have no regrets. 

(2) Every year, pandemics permitting, I concelebrate the Chrism Mass, and do so with immense joy. If anybody wants to know why, I will reprint a series of articles on the History of Concelebration, which I wrote a few years ago.

Right. When you've calmed down, I will continue. 

I think it is a mistake to let crafty and manipulative liberals back us into a corner on this issue. 

Here are some observations.

In the Traditional Roman Rite, no presbyter can be ordained without concelebrating the Ordination Mass with the ordaining Bishop. If diocesan bishops were to ordain traditional ordinands, doing so in the Old Rite, then the 'test issue' of Concelebration as a sign of Unity would have been met.

Would it not be a an admirable sign of unity for clergy who favour the Novus Ordo, from time to time, to be ordained at a Traditional ordination?

If Traditional clergy take part in the Chrism Mass, sitting in choro, how is this not a manifestation of ecclesial unity? I regard the Renewal of Vows as unnecessary and, frankly, not a little bit silly, but would it be a matter of principle for traditional clergy to refuse to join in this rite?

Bishop Tissier, in his scrupulous biography of the Great Archbishop, refers to photographic evidence that Marcel Lefebvre did concelebrate at least once (and versus populum). Was this a terrible apostasy?

If a bishop ... even an Archbishop of Dijon ... were to celebrate a Solemn Pontifical High Mass in the Old Rite, with traddy priests deaconing, subdeaconing, serving, administering Holy Communion, would this not be a sign of ecclesial unity? Why is concelebration the only acceptable such sign of unity? How can the Archbishop of Dijon claim that concelebration is essentially required by the very nature of the Church, when, for centuries, Roman Rite clergy, once their own ordination was over, never concelebrated again? Does the Archbishop really believe that the Catholic Church did not exist until the 1970s?

In 1965, when the old Missal and the old Pontifical were still in use, Rome authorised a new rite of Concelebration and ordered it to be added to the (1962) Missal and the old Pontifical. Presumably, this was the Rite which Archbishop Lefebvre celebrated about nine months after Rome had authorised it. It was more traddy than the rite of Concelebration now in use. Would Traddy clergy be prepared to take part in it? Would Trendy clergy be prepared to take part in it? 

If traddy laity occasionally saw, in their own diocese, trendy clergy being forced to take part in traddy Pontifical Liturgy with the Bishop, might they not be more open to the idea that it really was 'unity' that the Bishop was keen on, and not just the humiliation of Tradition?

I shall not enable comments which simply express a dislike of Concelebration, or which argue that Concelebration deprives the Church of the fruits of many Masses. That is not what this post is about.

It is about not letting ourselves be fooled and wrong-footed by crafty men with dubious motives.


Albrecht von Brandenburg said...

Why not just concelebrate - when it truly is occasionally necessary - in the older rite as was done, say in Rome during the XIIIth Century??

Problem solved.


prince Matecki said...

Dear father Hunwiche,
I support your position, however I would coution about the year 1965. In 1965 the libreria editrize vaticana published a missal in 3 volumes that was quickly translated (in the same year) and published.
It hat the approved texts in latin (with shortened prayer at the steps and a feow other changes) and in italian and encouraged the use of the vernacular for parts of the celebration.
There was only one canon, the roman, and priest were encouraged to still say it in latin. The other versions were published in a small additional volume in 1967 / 68 if I remember correctly.
I remember because I learned as a server / mess boy / "ministrant" in 1964 and had to adjust the following year. As I only hat latin a year later at school and was supposed to know the texts by heart, that was quite some learning for a 10 pr 11 year old.
I would suppose that Msgr L. did his concelebration in accordance with this missal of 1965.

prince Matecki said...

Sorry Father Hunwicke for the typos! Which of course prouves that you should not comment here in a hurry!

prince Matecki said...

Sorry Father Hunwicke for the typos, which of course shows once more that I should not comment here in a hurry.

Ansgerus said...

As a vompromise, the Bishop of Dijon should celebrate the Chrism mass acc. to the missal of 1965. Even the FSSPX would not have any reason to refuse this, as 1965 was the version used even at Econe in the first years. Even two ambo were used for reading the Epistle and the Gospel of the day, until they were removed by someone, maybe a member of a little group called the Chapitre, only to be found a long time later and never used again.

Cosmos said...

An interesting parallel is Saturday evening mass. I can agree that the Church has the right to grant that these masses meet the Sunday obligation. I could see the benefit of such a mass, say, before a voyage or other appropriate occasions.

But the Church’s normative practice over the centuries is obvious Sunday mass and there is a theological element to this practice. It would seem unnecessary and a trifle insecure for Church authorities to require someone to attend a Saturday mass as a show of solidarity with the legitimate authority of the episcopacy.

Shaun Davies said...

Surely the Saturday evening Mass is a complete break with tradition ?
Catholics used to make a great fuss about Midnight Mass being the First Mass of the Christmas Day, now in many Churches the Christmas Masses begin at 4 p.m. on the Eve which then makes nonsense of the Midnight Mass (or Mass In The Night) as the first Mass and we have Midnight Mass at 8p.m. or 9 p.m. We are constantly being told that Sunday begins on the evening before - true, we prepare by First Vespers, but the day begins at Midnight, hence Christmas Midnight Mass. Or is this all wrong ?

PM said...

I was passing through Dijon some years ago and attended Mass in the marvellous medieval basilica of St Benigne. The church was marvellous but the liturgy excruciating: the tone was set by a 'cantor' who was really a crooner with microphone and would have been better suited to a French version of Las Vegas.

A poignant note on concelebration: the Pope Emeritus, whom most here would admire, is now so physically week that he cannot stand long enough to offer the Holy Sacrifice himself and is reduced to concelebration from a wheelchair. Ora pro eo.

Russs said...

If uniformity and coherence is the objective, which is no doubt the case, then New Order Priests and Bishops must learn and offer the Extraordinary form. Because the objective can only be obtained by the conditions they are setting. Both forms—Bravo! I am more than willing to help pay for altar settings and garb. My boys will serve. Let’s do this!

JKE said...

You are deeply confused. The Novus Ordo anti-church is to be spurned, entirely spurned. Become Catholic at last.

utahagen said...

Fr. H. "It is about not letting ourselves be fooled and wrong-footed by crafty men with dubious motives."

Spot-on, Sir. Superb analysis.