Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Extraordinary or Ordinary?

Catholic News Service quotes the Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi as saying that Pope Benedict "concelebrates his daily morning Mass in Italian using the current edition of the Roman Missal."

This is an obvious reference to the Catholic World News story from yesterday that Pope Benedict celebrates his private Mass using the Missal of Blessed John XXIII.

A few points to ponder: CNS says that the Pope "concelebrates" according to the Missal of Paul VI. Perhaps we have some Clintonian parsing going on here because, of course, you can't concelebrate under the Extraordinary Usage of the Roman Rite. So can we conclude that when BXVI concelebrates he uses the Ordinary Usage and when he celebrates alone he uses the Extraordinary Usage?

Another point to ponder: The Holy Father, in his motu proprio clearly indicated that we shouldn't call it the "Tridentine Mass" or "Tridentine rite" anymore since it is in fact the same rite and the same Mass in the one Roman Rite. We should call it Extraordinary Use or Mass according to the Missal of Bl. John XXIII.

Yet here is the Catholic News Service, the official news agency of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, calling it the "Tridentine rite" and "Tridentine Mass." I expect such sloppiness from secular news sources, but from the official Catholic news agency? Not good.

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