2 March 2023

So where have this week's Ember Masses disappeared to?


Where have these gone to? In the 1969 Vatican Document Calendarium Romanum, page 59, reasons are given for abolishing the 'Pre-Lent Season', but this promise then follows: "Textus proprii harum trium Dominicarum alibi ponentur in Missali romano".

"Will be placed somewhere else in the Roman Missal".

So where are they? 


In the same Vatican document, we are told that the Masses for these days "non amplius in Proprio de Tempore, sed inter Missas votivas, locum habebunt." 

Oh Yeah? So where are they?


When Sacrosanctum Concilium was put together and then promulgated as the first of the Council's decrees, nobody knew ... they had not been provided with crystal balls ... how much of the old would, in less than a decade, be just dumped, and replaced (if replaced at all) by shiny new compositions. It is against that background that the historian will read Paragraph 107. It prescribes that the liturgical year should be so revised that "servatis aut restitutis sacrorum temporum traditis consuetudinibus et disciplinis ... ipsorum indoles nativa retineatur ...".

The Council accepted that many of the contents of the Rogation and Ember Masses related to seasonal agricultural processes which would (for example) differ in the Northern and Southern hemispheres.

This was not an irrational concern. It is not surprising that the Fathers went along with it.

But, even given this awareness, the Council mandated that "Accommodationes autem, secundum locorum condiciones, si quae forte necessariae sint ... "

Good heavens!!!

Remember: this is "the Council!!!" which the Bergoglios and the Roches rely upon for their radical and aggressive agenda.

And notice the phrase "if any changes were perchance to be necessary". And notice the subjunctive verb sint rather than indicative sunt.  


I am making two points: (1) the Council anticipated the retention of much that in fact disappeared; and (2) the Fathers, when they voted for the text of Sacrosanctum Concilium in front of them, had been given not an inkling of the broad, extensive mandate which would be assumed by the post-Conciliar 'revisers'.


Arthur H said...


In the "where did it go?" department: At first, the pastor at my parish, and others, I think, placed a low Tabernacle on the new altar, because he couldn't imagine turning his back on the Eucharist in the Tabernacle on the high altar (which he was doing, but...). This required new, more squat ciboria. I can't remember how long it was before the new Tabernacle was removed... All these memories are attended by an undefinable sadness, of course.

Ttony said...

From the Bishops' Conference (https://www.liturgyoffice.org.uk/Calendar/Cycle/IntroCP.shtml):

"In the Catholic tradition the human experience of time is used as a way of engaging us with the saving mystery of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection. The cycle of days, weeks and the whole year is for this reason of supreme importance in Christian worship.

Each week on the day called the Lord’s Day the Church commemorates the Lord’s resurrection. Once a year at Easter the Church honours this resurrection and passion with the utmost solemnity. Through the yearly cycle the Church unfolds the entire mystery of Christ and keeps the anniversary of the saints.

All other celebrations need to find their proper place in the Calendar so that the principal mysteries of the redemption do not lose their appropriate prominence.

Amongst these other celebrations, from the earliest times have been the rogation and ember days, days of prayer for particular need or in thanksgiving for particular blessings of the Lord. Since 1972 the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has preferred to drop all distinction between ember and rogation days, and to speak simply of Days of special prayer.

In 1972 six such days were introduced but in the years which followed the number of such days increased to such an extent that they risked intruding on the celebration of the liturgical year, and especially on the celebration of the Lord’s Day on Sundays. Subsequently the Bishops’ Conference concluded that from Advent 1996 these Days of special prayer be subsumed into and replaced by a Cycle of Prayer.

The Cycle of Prayer seeks to preserve the integrity of the Sunday liturgy, without losing sight of the importance of being united with the universal or local Church in praying and working for important intentions. It seeks to do this be encouraging the faithful to pray for the intentions set out in the Cycle in their personal prayers throughout the period specified, and not only at Mass on a particular day.

The Cycle of Prayer is based on a division of the year into six periods, three of these being the principal liturgical seasons of Advent/Christmas; Lent and Easter and the other three periods being divisions of Ordinary Time, namely Winter, Summer and Autumn.

Each of these six periods is allocated its proper series of intentions for prayer, which may be taken up by both individuals and parishes and other groups throughout the season. Each individual intention also has its particular focal point, i.e. a particular celebration or Day of Prayer ordered by the Holy See."

Ho hum.

John Vasc said...

Rogation Days remind us all of our stewardship of the land. They are not so specific as to be only applicable to southern contadini.
Nor is there any reference in the Lenten Ember masses to agricultural concerns. The (many) Lessons and Collects are admonitions to avoid evil, to do penance for sin and amend our sinful ways, to plead for God's mercy and and to obey His commands. All, that is, except for the Lesson on Ember Wednesday, which is of Moses ascending Mount Sinai to take the tablets of stone - a clear OT parallel with the Transfiguration Gospel of Ember Saturday which, as Fr H writes in his subsequent post, was probably connected in the middle ages with the priestly ordinations taking place that week.
It was not a sensitivity to regional climatic discrepancies that prompted the Bugnini mafia to jettison Ember Days: it was the *humbly penitential* liturgical tone and contents of the Ember Days passim. Red rag, meet bull(s).
If there was one thing the liturgical 60s-70s swingers were determined to abolish, it was humility and penitence. the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar were the first victims.