by Fr. Carlos Reyes
I’ve been reading some posts lately on the merits of the TLM over the Novus Ordo and I just want to offer my two cents worth so to speak.
1) I don’t think that there should be a contest between the Novus Ordo and the TLM. The liturgy of the eucharist has undergone changes throughout the centuries and comparing alleged virtues of one order over another is simply not absolutely necessary. Some comparisons are made citing abuses committed by some priests while celebrating the Novus Ordo. Comparisons, if ever, have to be between the normal celebrations of both orders and not between an aberration of the Novus Ordo as against the TLM (although in my opinion, aberrations in the TLM are close to impossible given the nature of the TLM). Regarding abuses committed in the liturgy, then Cardinal Ratzinger says:
“In the place of liturgy as the fruit of development came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over the centuries and replaced it – as in a manufacturing process – with a fabrication, a banal on-the-spot product.”
-Cardinal Ratzinger, quoted by Kocik, Thomas (2003). The reform of the reform?: a liturgical debate : reform or return. Ignatius Press.
There are abuses, yes, and we have to address this issue. But the abuses are exceptions, not the norm. I believe that most priests still follow the norm.
2) Adherents of the TLM should also accept that there is necessary development in the liturgy as proclaimed by Sacrosanctum Concilium, which is a constitution and is therefore binding to all Catholics. It says:
The rite of the Mass is to be revised in such a way that the intrinsic nature and purpose of its several parts, as also the connection between them, may be more clearly manifested, and that devout and active participation by the faithful may be more easily achieved.
For this purpose the rites are to be simplified, due care being taken to preserve their substance; elements which, with the passage of time, came to be duplicated, or were added with but little advantage, are now to be discarded; other elements which have suffered injury through accidents of history are now to be restored to the vigor which they had in the days of the holy Fathers, as may seem useful or necessary.
-Sancrosanctum Concilium #50
“There is no contradiction between the two editions of the Roman Missal. In the history of the liturgy there is growth and progress, but no rupture.”
-Pope Benedict XVI, Letter to Bishops on the occasion of Summorum Pontificum
“This work was undertaken in accordance with the conciliar principles of fidelity to tradition and openness to legitimate development, and so it is possible to say that the reform of the Liturgy is strictly traditional and ‘in accordance with the ancient usage of the holy Fathers’.”
-St. John Paul II, Vicesimus quintus annus
There is development and evolution in liturgy. A synchronic study of the Eucharist would confirm this. The circumstances of the community determine such development and changes in the liturgy. We remember Jesus saying: The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.
3) As things stand, the Church now allows the use of the Novus Ordo (which is the Ordinary) and the TLM. Any comparison or criticism of one or the other is academic and disruptive of church unity. We may use both so there should be no more occasion for criticism. It is a matter of personal preference. I acknowledge that there are Catholics who love the TLM and we have to take care of them and as much as we are able, provide for their spiritual needs. Based on my pastoral experience though, I can see that the majority of Catholics now prefer the Novus Ordo. I tried a soft opening of the latin mass in our chapel by celebrating the Novus Ordo in latin. The assembly felt left out because they cannot follow the Mass in latin. I love celebrating the Novus Ordo in latin, but I love the people more so I celebrate in english or in the vernacular
I think that Catholics must have mutual respect for each other and labeling our fellow Catholics ‘Novus Ordo Sectarian’ or ‘Ultra-traditionalist’ is not Christian or Catholic (the word Catholic means Universal). We must refrain from hurting each other over the Mass! Let us respect the personal preference (as allowed by the Church) of the individual Catholic and stop calling each other names. After all, Jesus Christ probably celebrated the first Mass (the institutional moment) either in Aramaic or Hebrew.
Ako sana ang magsusulat ng article pero nasabi naman ni Fr. Caloy yung gusto kong sabihin, at mas maganda pa ang pagkakasabi kaya yung isinulat na lang niya ang inilagay ko dito sa blog.