Saturday, August 04, 2012

The argument about the American ordinariate
Doesn’t directly concern me (I’ve got high church at my Tridentine parish, maybe unusual but great, I don’t miss hearing the Prayer Book on Sunday, and I’m not a married ex-Anglican priest applying to be a Catholic priest), I haven’t talked in person with anybody involved, and clerical gossip is the devil’s radio, but...

I understand this started with a private conversation with Monsignor Steenson. A man said he occasionally goes to an SSPX chapel. Monsignor sensibly asked, ‘Then are you really in communion with your bishop?’ Perfect theology, but given the reality in much of the country (the old liberals aren’t going away soon enough), even though the SSPX and trads generally have their faults (small, narrow cult under seige, understandable but not the relatively laid-back real pre-conciliar church, the approximation of which I try to live in), I don’t have a problem with what that man’s doing. Sort of the Italian approach, casual about the institutional niceties. It’s not schismatic in principle so don’t sweat it. Certainly if you’re a layman. Laity are free that way.

I slightly knew Monsignor when he was rector of Rosemont. I agree with the near consensus: nice man.

It’s Not About Latin™ and I believe in religious liberty and ecumenism (talk to the Orthodox; teach the Protestants and non-Christians). The council’s not heresy but I have no need for it.

Hostility to the traditional Mass from the ordinariate is uncalled for. Denying the obvious affinity of the two forms is stupid. (Some Greek Catholics, trying to look cool, do that too.)

Thanks to Pope Benedict, church law says any Roman Rite priest may use the traditional Mass any time.

That said, I appreciate the argument that the (American) ordinariate is supposed to be the continuation, and, many of us hope, improvement/traditionalization, of the Anglican Use. In other words, if a priest wants to do the traditional Mass and not Anglicanized hybrid services, then be ordained under the Pastoral Provision and be a diocesan priest instead.

(The British ordinariate has been Novus since they were nominally Anglican. Silly to make them do Prayer Book hybrid services. Like an American telling the British how to be British. Let them be: Novus with married priests, and, I hope, eventually re-traditionalizing themselves, following Benedict’s lead.)

Obedience doesn’t mean you have to say the current arrangements of the ordinariate and Anglican Use are perfect. The AU’s better than standard Novus but made up, a product of the height of novusordism in the early years of John Paul the Overrated (the trad view, which I agree with).

Good to see the blogs repeating what I’ve been saying awhile: ‘let’s use what we already have’, the old unofficial missals, both Tridentine in translation (English Missal) and the hybrids (Anglican and American missals). The American ordinariate is the natural home of this. Nobody in the church really loves the 1979 Episcopal Prayer Book, even Rite I. The AU and American ordinariate would welcome the missals. Bring them back! (The ordinariate as the official home of Tridentine in English makes sense.) Working model: Mount Calvary, Baltimore. (Fr Catania also celebrates the traditional Mass.)

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