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Reflections: Latin Mass / Catholic Tradition Section

The Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass

Ltn.Mass/Trad. | Home | Daily Digest | Reflections: A-Z | Categorized

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Against Mass in the Vernacular

Against Modernism

Against Modernism / Novelty [Pg.]

Against Novelty / Novel Doctrine

Canon of Traditional Mass is Errorless

Condemnation of Antiquarianism

Eastward Direction For Worship

God is Unchangeable

Gregorian Chant

History / Unchangeableness of the Ancient Mass

It is Becoming That There Be Only One Appropriate Rite For Mass

The Latin Language

Law of Prayer / Law of Faith

Participation in Mass

Pope's Authority Over Liturgy is Bound to the Tradition of the Faith

Praise / Benefits of the Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass

Quo Primum

Sacred Art

Sacred Music

Silent Canon / Silence

Stability / Change

The Substance of the Sacraments is Unchangeable

Tradition / Traditions

Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass [Pg.]

Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass / Misc.

The Traditional Liturgical Year

The Traditional Mass / The New Mass

The 'Tridentine' Mass in Recent Years

Unchangeableness of Dogmas 

Misc.

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Against Modernism / Novelty

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Against Modernism

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Condemnation of  Antiquarian-

ism

Note: Antiquarianism refers to the modernists quest to 'restore' the Church to a 'primitive form' that better corresponds with Protestant sensibilities, not to the Traditionalists attempts to restore the traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass and pre-Vatican II practices. In fact, the 'reduction to antiquity' of the Modernists and the restoration sought by the Traditionalists are diametrically opposed. The 'reducing to antiquity' of the Modernists has been condemned by the popes - whereas true faithfulness to tradition has always been guarded in the Church, and is even praised in Holy Scripture. For more information on this topic, try here.

"But it is neither wise nor laudable to reduce everything to antiquity by every possible device. Thus, to cite some instances, one would be straying from the straight path were he to wish the altar restored to its primitive table form; were he to want black excluded as a color for the liturgical vestments; were he to forbid the use of sacred images and statues in churches; were he to order the crucifix so designed that the divine Redeemer's body shows no trace of His cruel sufferings; and lastly were he to disdain and reject polyphonic music or singing in parts, even where it conforms to regulations issued by the Holy See." (Pope Pius XII, "Mediator Dei", 1947 A.D.) 

Also See: Tradition / Traditions | Unchangeableness of Dogmas | The Substance of the Sacraments is Unchangeable

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God is Unchangeable

Also See: God (Topic Page)

 

"God is not man that he should speak falsely, nor human, that he should change his mind. Is he one to speak and not act, to decree and not fulfill?" (Num. 23:19)

"Of old you laid the earth's foundations; the heavens are the work of your hands. They perish, but you remain; they all wear out like a garment; Like clothing you change them and they are changed, but you are the same, your years have no end." (Ps. 102:26-28)

"He plumbs the depths and penetrates the heart; their innermost being he understands. The Most High possesses all knowledge, and sees from of old the things that are to come: He makes known the past and the future, and reveals the deepest secrets. No understanding does he lack; no single thing escapes him. Perennial is his almighty wisdom; he is from all eternity one and the same, with nothing added, nothing taken away; no need of a counselor for him!" (Sirach 42:18-22)

"Even to your old age I am the same, even when your hair is gray I will bear you; It is I who have done this, I who will continue, and I who will carry you to safety." (Isa. 46:4)

"Surely I, the LORD, do not change, nor do you cease to be sons of Jacob." (Mal. 3:6)

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." (Heb. 13:8)

"Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers: all good giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no alteration or shadow caused by change." (Jms. 1:16-17)

"Though all things pass God does not change." (St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church)

"Consider seriously how quickly people change, and how little trust is to be had in them; and hold fast to God, who does not change." (St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church)

"Eternity itself is the substance of God, which has nothing that is changeable. There is nothing there that is past, as if it were no longer; nothing there is future, as if it not yet were. There is nothing there except 'is'." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, c. 5th century A.D.)

"Christ is the teacher and the exemplar of all sanctity, and to His standard must all those conform who wish for eternal life. Nor does Christ know any change as the ages pass, 'for He is yesterday and today and the same forever. (Hebrews xiii, 8)" (Pope Leo XIII, "Testem Benevolentiae Nostrae", 1899)

Also See: Unchangeableness of Dogmas | Against Modernism / Novelty

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Gregorian Chant

Also See: Music (Topic Page)

"The Church recognizes Gregorian chant as being specially suited to the Roman liturgy. Therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services." (Second Vatican Council)

"[T]he more closely a composition for church approaches in its movement, inspiration and savor the Gregorian form, the more sacred and liturgical it becomes; and the more out of harmony it is with that supreme model, the less worthy it is of the temple. The ancient traditional Gregorian Chant must, therefore, in a large measure be restored to the functions of public worship, and the fact must be accepted by all that an ecclesiastical function loses none of its solemnity when accompanied by this music alone." (Pope St. Pius X, "Inter Sollicitudines", 1903)

"A Catholic should regard his liturgy with pietas. He should revere, and therefore fear to abandon the prayers and postures and music that have been approved by so many saints throughout the Christian era and delivered to us as a precious heritage. To go no further: the illusion that we can replace the Gregorian chant, with its inspired hymns and rhythms, by equally fine, if not better, music betrays a ridiculous self-assurance and lack of self-knowledge." (Von Hildebrand)

"As regards music, let the clear and guiding norms of the Apostolic See be scrupulously observed. Gregorian chant, which the Roman Church considers her own as handed down from antiquity and kept under her close tutelage, is proposed to the faithful as belonging to them also. In certain parts of the liturgy the Church definitely prescribes it; it makes the celebration of the sacred mysteries not only more dignified and solemn but helps very much to increase the faith and devotion of the congregation." (Pope Pius XII, "Mediator Dei", 1947 A.D.)

"And if in Catholic churches throughout the entire world Gregorian chant sounds forth without corruption or diminution, the chant itself, like the sacred Roman liturgy, will have a characteristic of universality, so that the faithful, wherever they may be, will hear music that is familiar to them and a part of their own home. In this way they may experience, with much spiritual consolation, the wonderful unity of the Church. This is one of the most important reasons why the Church so greatly desires that the Gregorian chant traditionally associated with the Latin words of the sacred liturgy be used." (Pope Pius XII, "Musicae Sacrae", 1955 A.D.)

"It is the duty of all those to whom Christ the Lord has entrusted the task of guarding and dispensing the Church's riches to preserve this precious treasure of Gregorian chant diligently and to impart it generously to the Christian people. Hence what Our predecessors, St. Pius X, who is rightly called the renewer of Gregorian chant, and Pius XI have wisely ordained and taught, We also, in view of the outstanding qualities which genuine Gregorian chant possesses, will and prescribe that this be done. In the performance of the sacred liturgical rites this same Gregorian chant should be most widely used and great care should be taken that it should be performed properly, worthily and reverently. And if, because of recently instituted feast days, new Gregorian melodies must be composed, this should be done by true masters of the art. It should be done in such a way that these new compositions obey the laws proper to genuine Gregorian chant and are in worthy harmony with the older melodies in their virtue and purity." (Pope Pius XII, "Musicae Sacrae", 1955 A.D.)

Also See: Gregorian Chant | Sacred Music | Sacred Music (Church Talk Reflections)

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The Latin Language

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Sacred Art

Also See: Catholic Artwork (Topic Page)

"The image is the book of those who cannot read, and even the learned may gain more from an instant's gazing at an eloquent picture than from the prolonged study of many volumes." (Dom Gueranger)

Also See: Sacred Art / Images (Church Talk Reflections)

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Sacred Music

Also See: Music (Topic Page)

"The musical tradition of the universal Church is a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than that of any other art." (Second Vatican Council)

Also See: Gregorian Chant | Sacred Music (Church Talk Reflections)

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Stability / Change

"Truth is essentially unchangeable. But man is very changeable. The stability of all great and good things is a high value. Growth, in the sense of the increase of our love for God...is a heightening and a deepening in which everything which was there before lives on and does not disappear. But what is important to us here is the value of stability as opposed to change, as far as it is a matter of something good and beautiful. As soon as disvalue comes into question, then change - indeed the complete elimination of the disvalue - is a great value. But let us now remain in the sphere of the good and the beautiful. The structure of the whole liturgical year and the Tridentine Mass was something great and wonderful. It was of greatest pastoral importance as a way of drawing us up from the whole mediocrity of everyday life, indeed from the finite and worldly sphere into the world of supernatural mystery, into the world of Christ. Here the thought of a change and reform is meaningless. This is not only because we live in a time in which the talent for the formation of the liturgy is very weak, as we already mentioned, but also because this work has been entrusted to 'experts', and not to men who are filled with great reverence for that which has been handed down to us from earlier, glorious times - indeed entrusted to men who base their work on a false diagnosis of our time, on the myth of 'modern man.' But what we want to emphasize here is the value of stability, the value which lies in praying in the same way in which the saints and 'homines religioisi' of the past prayed...

[C]hanging for the sake of change is not only an infantile procedure, but leads to a disastrous confusion in its pedagogical effects" (Von Hildebrand)

Also See: Tradition / Traditions | God is Unchangeable | Unchangeableness of Dogmas | Against Modernism / Novelty | Truth / Error / Nature of Man (Coming Home Reflections)

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The Substance of the Sacraments is Unchangeable

Also See: Sacraments (Topic Page)

"[I]t is well known that to the Church there belongs no right whatsoever to innovate anything touching on the substance of the sacraments" (Pope St. Pius X, "Ex quo", 1910 A.D.)

Also See: Unchangeableness of Dogmas | Sacraments Section

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Tradition / Traditions

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Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass

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Against Mass in the Vernacular

Canon of Traditional Mass is Errorless

Eastward Direction For Worship

History / Unchangeableness of the Ancient Mass

It is Becoming That There Be Only One Appropriate Rite For Mass

Law of Prayer / Law of Faith

Participation in Mass

Pope's Authority Over Liturgy is Bound to the Tradition of the Faith

Praise / Benefits of the Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass

Quo Primum

Silent Canon / Silence

The Traditional Liturgical Year

The Traditional Mass / The New Mass

The 'Tridentine' Mass in Recent Years

Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass / Misc.

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Unchange-

ableness of Dogmas 

"...that progress of dogmas...is, in reality, nothing but the corruption of dogmas." (Pope St. Pius X, "Lamentabili Sane", 1907)

"If anyone says that it is possible that at some time, given the advancement of knowledge, a sense may be assigned to the dogmas propounded by the Church which is different from that which the Church has understood and understands: let him be anathema." (First Vatican Council)

"[T]hings that are of natural law vary according to the various states and conditions of men; although those which naturally pertain to things Divine nowise vary." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"The Holy Spirit was not promised to the successor of Peter that by the revelation of the Holy Spirit they might disclose new doctrine, but that by His help they might guard sacredly the revelation transmitted through the Apostles and the deposit of faith, and might faithfully set it forth." (First Vatican Council) 

"For the doctrine of the faith which God has revealed is put forward not as some philosophical discovery capable of being perfected by human intelligence, but as a divine deposit committed to the spouse of Christ to be faithfully protected and infallibly promulgated. Hence, too, that meaning of the sacred dogmas is ever to be maintained which has once been declared by Holy Mother Church, and there must never be any abandonment of this sense under the pretext or in the name of a more profound understanding. May understanding, knowledge and wisdom increase as ages and centuries roll along, and greatly and vigorously flourish, in each and all, in the individual and the whole church: but this only in its own proper kind, that is to say, in the same doctrine, the same sense, and the same understanding." (First Vatican Council)

"Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact - one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history - the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way." (Pope St. Pius X, Oath Against Modernism, 1910 A.D.)

Also See: Church Dogmas Are Unchangeable (Catholic Life Reflections) | Against Modernism / Novelty | Tradition / Traditions | Novel Teachings Are Forbidden (Coming Home Reflections) | Against Human 'Progress' in Religion (Coming Home Reflections) | Popes as Preservers of Tradition / Against New Doctrines (Vatican View Reflections) | Duty to Reject Strange Doctrine (Coming Home Reflections) | Error / Truth (Coming Home Reflections) | One Should Not Be Open Minded to Error (Coming Home Reflections) | Heresy/Heretics & Schism/Schismatics (Coming Home Reflections) | Modernism / Novelties (Q &A) | God is Unchangeable

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Misc.

"The honest restoration of a well-proven past [is] the best guarantee of a tranquil future." (Fr. Dulac, as quoted by Davies)

"In the Catholic Church care must be taken that we may hold fast to that which has been believed everywhere, always, and by all ['quod ubique, quod semper, quod ab omnibus']" (Attr. St. Vincent of Lerins, c. 434 A.D.) 

"When [the Church] judges she cannot accept certain changes, it is because she knows she is bound by Christ's manner of acting. Her attitude, despite appearances, is therefore not one of archaism but of fidelity" (Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as confirmed by Pope Paul VI)

"When the obligation of thus keeping up certain days of preparation previous to festivals is strictly maintained by a people, it is a sign that faith is still living amongst them; it proves they understand the greatness of that which the holy ['Tridentine'] liturgy possesses to their homage." (Liturgical Year)

"But in order that philosophy may be bound equal to the gathering of those precious fruits which we have indicated, it behooves it above all things never to turn aside from that path which the Fathers have entered upon from a venerable antiquity, and which the [First] Vatican Council solemnly and authoritatively approved." (Pope Leo XIII, "Aeterni Patris", 1879 A.D.)

"Can. 1164 § 1 Ordinaries shall take care, even hearing, if need be, the advice of experts, that in the building or refurbishing of churches, the forms received from Christian tradition and the laws of sacred art are observed. § 2. In a church there shall be no entrance or window opening into the house of laity; those places under the floor of the church, if there are any, shall not be used for merely profane use." (1917 Code of Canon Law)

"...Christ the Son of God first promulgated with his own mouth, and then commanded to be preached by his apostles to every creature as the source of ever saving truth and of instruction in morals, and clearly perceiving that this truth and instruction are contained in the written books and in the unwritten traditions, which have been received by the apostles from Christ himself, or from the apostles themselves, at the dictation of the Holy Spirit..." (Council of Trent)

"Can. 1261 § 1 Local Ordinaries shall be vigilant that the prescriptions of the sacred canons on divine cult be scrupulously observed, and especially lest there be introduced in divine cult, whether public or private, or in the daily life of the faithful, any superstitious practice or that in any way there be admitting something alien to the faith or inconsistent with ecclesiastic tradition or anything looking like a sort of profit." (1917 Code of Canon Law)

"Can. 1323 § 1 All of those things are to be believed with a divine and Catholic faith that are contained in the written word of God or in tradition and that the Church proposes and worthy of belief, as divinely revealed, whether by solemn judgment or by her ordinary and universal magisterium. § 2 it belongs to an Ecumenical Council or to the Roman Pontiff speaking from the chair to pronounce solemnly this sort of judgement. § 3 A thing is not understood as dogmatically defined or declared unless this is manifestly established." (1917 Code of Canon Law)

"Thus, in order to remove the double evil from the Church, We must return to that method from which some, setting themselves up in the Church as wiser, have insolently and imprudently led the faithful away for some time. We think that the Roman Catechism should be offered to the priests again so that just as it once strengthened the Catholic faith and strengthened the minds of the faithful in the Church's teaching which is the pillar of truth, it may now turn them away from new ideas which neither antiquity nor unanimity recommend... We now strongly recommend it [the Roman Catechism] to you, venerable brothers. We strongly encourage you to order that everybody who has the care of souls should use it in instructing the faithful in the Catholic truth in order to preserve unity of learning, charity, and harmony of spirits. For it is your duty to be attentive to everybody's serenity. Finally, it is the bishop's duty to watch carefully that nobody breaks the bond of unity and creates schisms by proudly acting in his own interests." (Pope Clement XIII, "In Dominico Agro", 1761 A.D.)

"[H]uman law is rightly changed, in so far as such change is conducive to the commonweal. But, to a certain extent, the mere change of law is of itself prejudicial to the common good: because custom avails much for the observance of laws, seeing that what is done contrary to general custom, even in slight matters, is looked upon as grave. Consequently, when a law is changed, the binding power of the law is diminished, in so far as custom is abolished. Wherefore human law should never be changed, unless, in some way or other, the commonweal be compensated according to the extent of the harm done in this respect. Such compensation may arise either from some very great and every evident benefit conferred by the new enactment; or from the extreme urgency of the case, due to the fact that either the existing law is clearly unjust, or its observance extremely harmful. Wherefore the jurist says (Pandecta Justinum liber i, ff, title iv, De Constit. Princip.) that 'in establishing new laws, there should be evidence of the benefit to be derived, before departing from a law which has long been considered just.'" (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"And so the rule of language which the Church has established through the long labor of centuries, with the help of the Holy Spirit, and which she has confirmed with the authority of the Councils, and which has more than once been the watchword and banner of orthodox faith, is to be religiously preserved, and no one may presume to change it at his own pleasure or under the pretext of new knowledge. Who would ever tolerate that the dogmatic formulas used by the ecumenical councils for the mysteries of the Holy Trinity and the Incarnation be judged as no longer appropriate for men of our times, and let others be rashly substituted for them? In the same way, it cannot be tolerated that any individual should on his own authority take something away from the formulas which were used by the Council of Trent to propose the Eucharistic Mystery for our belief. These formulas - like the others that the Church used to propose the dogmas of faith - express concepts that are not tied to a certain specific form of human culture, or to a certain level of scientific progress, or to one or another theological school. Instead they set forth what the human mind grasps of reality through necessary and universal experience and what it expresses in apt and exact words, whether it be in ordinary or more refined language. For this reason, these formulas are adapted to all men of all times and all places. They can, it is true, be made clearer and more obvious; and doing this is of great benefit. But it must always be done in such a way that they retain the meaning in which they have been used, so that with the advance of an understanding of the faith, the truth of faith will remain unchanged. For it is the teaching of the First Vatican Council that 'the meaning that Holy Mother the Church has once declared, is to be retained forever, and no pretext of deeper understanding ever justifies any deviation from that meaning.'" (Pope Paul VI, 1965 A.D.)

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