Pope Paul VI to the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Michael Ramsey

"(B)y entering into our house, you are entering your own house, we are happy to open our door and heart to you." - Pope Paul VI to Dr Michael Ramsey, Archbishop of Canterbury.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Ordinariate preserves the Latin liturgy but it isn't traddie

Unbeknownst to many Roman Catholics especially those of the Latin traditional persuasion, Anglicanism has preserved  Latin in the Western Church and now hands it back to the 21st century  Church. Professor Diarmaid McCullough credits the Anglicans for preserving what he calls things of beauty the post Vatican II Roman Church threw out.

The Book of Common Prayer has a beautiful psalmody and it is likely that this would be included in the liturgical books of the Ordinariates. The psalms are still introduced by their first Latin verse. Example Psalm 137 is still introduced by its first Latin verse as "Super flumina". Now which Roman Catholic prayerbook still has that?

In three minutes we can see the Mass of St Theresa of Avila in the Anglican Use celebrated by the Rt Rev Msgr Andrew Burnham in St Mary Magdalene, Brighton. No one can confuse this Mass as a Novus Ordo or the Tridentine Mass. It is the Mass of the Anglican Use of the Roman Rite. This Mass does not claim to be the "Mass of the Ages". All Masses are, irrespective of rite or use.

But we do not detect a defiant traddie attitude in this Mass. It is a Mass celebrated in the 21st century but preserves the Catholic ethos of Anglicanism. It is Catholic in an Anglican expression.

The Ordinariate is not a particular church separated and exclusive from the rest of the Catholic Church. It is living a tradition that has restored and preserves  a spirituality that has animated the faithful over the centuries.

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