New Praenotanda, new RCIA, new Congregation department for art and music?

In what could be the dying throes of a brief regime,
Enough of the creative Mass, [what we want is] more silence and prayer in church
is the title of an interview given by Cardinal Antonio Cañizares de Llovera, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, to Italian journalist Andrea Tornielli, released on December 24.

The prefect of divine worship, Cañizares, explains the renewal desired by the Pope. “We need more space for adoration and decent music in the liturgy” he says. “The reform of Vatican II was done in too much of a hurry.” So runs the subtitle to the interview.

“Catholic liturgy is living through ‘a certain crisis’ and Benedict XVI would like to give birth to a new liturgical movement, which would include more sacredness and silence in the Mass, and greater attention to beauty in singing, instrumental music and sacred art,” the article begins.

Llovera states that the Pope thinks the liturgical reform was realized in great haste. It was with the best of intentions and a desire to implement Vatican II, but it was rushed. Not enough time and space was given to welcoming and interiorising the teachings of the Council, and the manner of celebrating was changed at a stroke. The prevailing mentality was one of needing to change, of creating something new. Received tradition was perceived as an obstacle, and the liturgical renewal was seen as a laboratory for research, fruit of the imagination and of creativity, the equivalent of the magic spells of yesteryear.

He continues in a similar vein, saying that recent changes in the style of papal celebrations have benefited the Church, and that the “arbitrary deformities” introduced previously had brought secularisation into the Church, making the liturgy man-centred rather than God-centred, typified by the increased role given to the assembly [sic]. He laments a loss of a sense of the sacred. The Church is in a state of crisis, he says, singling out the poverty and banality of sacred music, both vocal and instrumental.

When asked what the Congregation is going to do about this, he says we must consider the liturgical renewal through the lens of the hermeneutic of continuity which, he says, Benedict XVI has given us for interpreting the mind of the Council. He is worried that the postconciliar reforms are starting to “gel”, and calls for a new initiative in formation for priests, seminarians, religious and laypeople, so that all may know what the liturgy of the Church really signifies. In particular, he states that the Congregation is going to revise and update the introductory texts (praenotanda) of the various liturgical books, and notes that this new formation initiative cannot take place without a “renewal” in the rites of Christian Initiation of Adults.

The new liturgical movement needs to ensure that the beauty of the liturgy is apparent. “Therefore I am going to instigate a new department in our Congregation dedicated to ‘sacred music and art’ at the service of the liturgy. Accordingly this will offer as soon as possible criteria and guidelines for sacred art and sacred music, both vocal and instrumental. We are also thinking of offering as soon as possible criteria and guidelines for preaching,” he says.

He wants the Church’s vigilance over the liturgy not to be perceived as inquisitorial or oppressive but as an act of service. Interestingly he also warns of the danger of turning aesthetics into a god, and states clearly that the salvation of the liturgy does not lie solely in beauty but in a true liturgical aesthetic. He warns of the risk, on the one hand, of thinking that a return to the past is the salvation of the liturgy, and on the other hand of banalizing the rite. Good catechesis based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church is the answer, he says. When asked what changes this would bring to the liturgy, he mentions eucharistic adoration, renewing and improving liturgical song, cultivating silence, and giving more space for meditation.


A useful backdrop to all this is given by Vatican observers. The word on the street is that the Cardinal is proving to be something of a disaster — so much so that even the Pope now realizes it. It is suggested that the Cardinal might soon be posted to Madrid, where the current incumbent is ready to retire. Apparently even the Cardinal himself would welcome this; it seems he has not enjoyed his time in Rome.

One informant says that on the day before the Consistory last month, his talk to the assembled cardinals was so anti-Vatican II that they were apparently furious, and the Pope had to grab the microphone, calm them down, and try to redress the balance. This, it seems, is when the Pope finally realized that this appointment isn’t working. Given this, one could be justified in wondering how much of what Llovera says is the Pope’s thinking is actually Llovera’s thinking.

Are the future actions mentioned in Llovera’s interview with Tornielli just the final convulsions of an unhappy reign, or might they actually come to pass?


64 responses to “New Praenotanda, new RCIA, new Congregation department for art and music?”

  1. Bill deHaas Avatar

    Re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic – i.e. Titanic = reform of the reform.

  2. Ray Marshall Avatar
    Ray Marshall

    Cardinal Arinze of Nigeria spoke on this several years ago. More silence is needed so that people can pray and meditate while they are in church for Mass. The music is not to be there for entertainment purposes.

    Too many preludes, postludes and especially, Communion hymns, in my opinion.

    1. Jeremy Stevens Avatar
      Jeremy Stevens

      Ever see a video of Mass in Nigeria? More silence needed? You betcha.

    2. Gregg Smith Avatar
      Gregg Smith

      Good luck trying to get more silence at mass…unless you stop all the babies and children at the door! Welcome to suburban america.

  3. WIll Roach Avatar
    WIll Roach

    Despite the doubt at the end, Benedict has used the term desacralization. This is not true. We have an intimacy with God in the present simple language. The new language tries to put distance between us and our Father. It flies in the face of God’s incarnation to be with us. Why the distance? Is it so that they can disorient us and then step in between us and God to project their own personal idea of God? Talk about abuse of the mass for one’s personal preference. “Me thinks ye doesth protest too much”

    1. Robert B. Ramirez Avatar
      Robert B. Ramirez

      Benedict has used the term desacralization. This is not true.

      It is true if the sense of transcendence is obscured. Intimacy with God Incarnate is not enough if our default image of him is Buddy Jesus.

      1. WIll Roach Avatar
        WIll Roach

        “intimacy with God incarnate is not enough”??!!! Is this your personal dogma? He ate with us at our houses, then that woman threw that perfume all over him, and then dared to touch him with her hands and hair, and then he touched us physycally to heal us when the cardinals said we were unclean. He wanted to be so close to us that he entered into our human flesh. This contact is His doing-not ours. ” I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltlesss. For the Son of Man is lord of the sabbath.” (Matt 12)

      2. WIll Roach Avatar
        WIll Roach

        Robert, the incarnation is the basis for our salvation. Just out of curiosity, what church do you belong to?

    2. george andrews Avatar
      george andrews

      Will R>>Despite the doubt at the end, Benedict has used the term desacralization. This is not true. We have an intimacy with God in the present simple language. <<

      Will, you sound like one of the very few–at least who will admit to it– who are enamored with the current translation.

      Perhaps I haven't emphasized this enough-Father R has been very patient allowing me to post so many times-, but the new translation will hardly be an 'abuse…for…personal preference'. American speaking Catholics will simply be expected to worship and pray as most Catholics throughout the world already do. ('with your spirit', 3x mea culpa, incarnate, etc). The 1973 translation did away with many universal, Catholic expressions of our Faith. (I only became aware of this by having visited and lived in several non-English speaking countries. I used to feel the same way you do.) Hence, I believe, this is why the Vatican has focused on the current translation's inadequacy.

      1. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
        Anthony Ruff, OSB

        I think many people have mixed feelings about the current translation and would take a nuanced view. That includes understanding the objectives of those who created it, based on their sense of the needs of people at that time who had never worshiped in vernacular and had to start somewhere. I don’t know anyone who would go to the mat defending the current translation in every aspect.

        It’s not true that we would join the rest of the world with the coming missal. The other language groups have not implemented missals following LA yet, and every indication is that they will not because their bishops do not believe in this. If we English-speakers follow the Latin literally, we will be the only language group in the world to do so come Advent 2011. I’m not sure what countries you’ve been in, but every country I’ve been in has language which is at time a more literal translation of Latin, at times not – in different proportions in every case, I grant, than is the case in our current translation.

        The Portuguese says “And also with you,” not “And with your spirit.” The Japanese says “And with the priest” because in their culture they don’t address officials in the second person. Examples of inculturation could be given for every language group without exception, but these two examples serve to make the point.

        Our coming missal will isolate English-speakers from the rest of the Church in many ways.


  4. Rita Ferrone Avatar
    Rita Ferrone

    Why the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults should be singled out particularly is odd indeed. It is not even implemented yet in many parts of the world. Where it has been used, it has met with the greatest success. What can he be thinking?

    1. Robert B. Ramirez Avatar
      Robert B. Ramirez

      What can he be thinking?

      There is no shortage of horror stories of RCIA programs degenerating into navel-gazing and agenda-driven harangues. Many converts report experiences that are long on process and very short on useful content. The CCC is the Church’s chief catechetical tool, and ought to be employed as such.

      1. Rita Ferrone Avatar
        Rita Ferrone

        Robert, the liturgy is what is in question here. I will forbear to say that the tales you’ve heard aren’t true, because how do you prove gossip is false? But the idea that the Catechism is not in use shows very little exposure to the facts on the ground or published materials available and recommended today. See the USCCB study Journey to the Fullness of Life. See the materials published by RCL or Paulist or Twenty-Third, or ACM. Nevertheless, the process of conversion is not a matter of reading a book, no matter how fine the book may be. It’s a genuine journey with people who are all over the map. Having worked in this field for 25+ years, I can assure you that the catechism alone will not cut it. But again the issue is the Rite. Forget the textbook focus for a minute to focus on the point of this post. The RCIA is a ritual process. If the Cardinal is setting out to reform religious education, he is in the wrong dicastery. My question is why would he focus on these rites as if they are now in need of reform, when they are widely considered to be (a) beautiful, (b) traditional, (c) adaptable, (d) theologically sound and sophisticated, but simple enough for ordinary people to do?

  5. Jack Nolan Avatar
    Jack Nolan

    Antonio Cardinal Cañizares de Llover makes perfect sense and we can only hope that the implementation of the council’s vision will take place even if belatedly under his and good Pope Benedict’s leadership. The best evidence that the reform was done in a hurry is the history of ICEL. Since 1965 the liturgy has been primarily noted for its instability and the translation battles are illustrative of this.

    1. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
      Anthony Ruff, OSB

      Jack, I don’t follow you. ICEL spent some 16 years on the 1997 sacramentary – this is hardly “in a hurry.” And because conservative forces shot down that translation, we have had the great stability of one translation since 1973! How are the “translation battles” illustrative of reform done in a hurry, or of instability? The big instability is coming – because of LA and Pope Benedict and the CDW. It is hard to see much continuity in the transition to the coming translation – it’s clearly a rupture with what went before.

      1. Jack Nolan Avatar
        Jack Nolan

        The 1973 translation is indicative of the “hurry” and different items, like the canon, were pushed through speedily over objections, reading the Tablet in those days is instructive. The translation battles are illustrative of reform done in a hurry because they are the result of a quickly done and maneuvered translation in the early 1970’s. The translation battles inevitably lead to newer translations bringing us back to instability in parishes:
        e. g. “for all men” now “for all” “This is the world of the Lord,” now “The word of the Lord”.
        The big instability that you foresee might never have been necessary if the earlier version of ICEL was not so shy with words like “grace” and if they were willing to communicate concepts like supplication, always present in the original. If these reforms are rupture to you it is interesting to see how some may read continuity as bringing rupture from discontinuity. I get that.

    2. Dunstan Harding Avatar
      Dunstan Harding

      Another good example of something done in a hurry was “Summorum Pontificum” and “Anglicanorum Coetibus” may still prove to be yet another dud.

  6. dismas bede Avatar

    I find his use of the word “instigate” curious. Don’t we usually think of one instigating trouble? That would certainly seem to be the mindset, especially if an eminent departure is imminent… or even just hoped-for.

    1. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


      It’s a translation, is it not? The Italian text of the response is:

      Perciò apriremo una nuova sezione della nostra Congregazione dedicata ad “Ar­te e musica sacra” al servizio del­la liturgia.

      The verb in question is apriremo which means “to open”. Perhaps “institute” or “instantiate” rather than “instigate”?

    2. Paul Inwood Avatar
      Paul Inwood

      We don’t necessarily have that connotation. “At my instigation” is a perfectly neutral usage, for example. I could have translated it as “set up”: it would have meant the same thing.

  7. David Haas Avatar
    David Haas

    In response to Rita’s wonderment about why the RCIA is singled out. I would venture a theory, that it is its very success, especially in North America, where some in Rome might have concern. The catechumenate has truly been a source of renewal, conversion, and a renewed sense of ministry, ecclesiology, spirituality, and has also influenced the liturgical renewal and sacramental practice in a big way. It has really invigorated the baptized/laity in many communities. It would not surprise me if these developments are a source of concern to some in Rome and this most interesting gentleman in particular. Makes me wonder.

  8. Todd Flowerday Avatar

    More of the hermeneutic of obstruction. A few more cardinals like this and even Pope Benedict may need to rewrite his favorite script.

  9. Paul Inwood Avatar
    Paul Inwood

    I take the RCIA reference (the Italian doesn’t actually have the words “of adults” but what else can he be referring to?) to mean that he thinks such things as lectionary-based catechesis are out and that we should return to giving people injections of doctrinal knowledge, based on the CCC. No point in re-educating clergy, seminarians, layfolk, etc, if you’re not going to do the same for those joining the Church.

    1. Tom Diebold Avatar
      Tom Diebold

      As a neophyte, and someone very interested in the discussion of the renewal/reform of the liturgy – but still learning much – I can attest that my recent RCIA experience included BOTH a lectionary-based catechesis AND a “heavy dose” of CCC-based doctrinal catechesis, though some parishioners in my small rural Michigan parish did not know what the CCC was (I suppose, to the “horror” of some, I helped introduce it to them)!!!

      In this respect, the RCIA process should be approached in a BOTH/AND manner, not in an EITHER/OR manner.

      On a somewhat different note, as a supplement to lectionary-based catechesis, I am having a “devil” of a time getting anyone in my parish to actually consider READING the Bible . . . for example to open up to Ch1Verse1 of Matthew and read from the beginning to the end. Relating this to the broader topic of liturgy in general, isn’t Catholicism steeped in a BOTH/AND approach to faith?

      1. Fr. Allan J. McDonald Avatar

        Good points Tom. Before the CCC was introduced in the early 1990’s there was an aversion to any catechism being used in the RCIA–we were dogmatically told at workshops that it had to be lectionary based. In fact what you describe is what we do. We use a strong catechism for our Thursday night classes and the lectionary for our Sunday morning dismissal. The Liturgies for the RCIA are wonderful when used to the fullest extent. The biggest problem with the RCIA is the fact that there is a significant number of those who go through this process and then leave the practice of the faith relatively shortly after having been received into the Church. I can testify to this also and I’m not sure what the solution is other than beefing up the spiritual aspect of the RCIA, the bond with strong Catholics in the RCIA and as sponsors and finding some sort of support group for them once they have completed the RCIA.

      2. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


        My former parish’s RCIA program involved lectionary-based catechesis after the catechumens’ dismissal from Mass, followed by a thematically-ordered catechesis on the faith after Mass, when the rest of the RCIA team joined the catechumens.

        I got an email, many months ago, from someone in a Canadian diocese in charge of catechetical planning, who had seen my Catechism search engine and wanted to know how much of the Catechism could be covered in a one-, two-, or three-year Lectionary-based catechetical program. It basically comes down to the question: how much of the content of the faith can we hand on to our catechumens through the Sunday readings?

        Of course there is going to be ongoing catechesis and formation in the faith throughout our lives, but we owe it to those seeking full communion with the Catholic Church to prepare them as much as possible — mind, soul, strength, and heart — for the journey ahead of them.

  10. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


    I’m growing less and less confident in things other people tell me the Pope is thinking. I’d rather read it in an actual document with the Pope’s approval, not an article by or an interview with someone else who’s convinced they know the mind of the Pope.

    1. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
      Anthony Ruff, OSB

      I agree with Jeffrey on this point.

      1. Karl Liam Saur Avatar
        Karl Liam Saur


        But I should note this is a hoary Roman thing. That is, it is a commonplace for Curial folks to put their words in their Pope’s mouth in this way. Doesn’t make it the Pope’s words, let alone legislation.

      2. Bill deHaas Avatar

        Would also agree – in an earlier post, I suggested that we use the latest internview by B16 and his comments/analysis on the use of condoms. Many reactions but it seems to show that those who speak for the Pope often don’t seem to catch his nuances, his point, his goal, etc.

        Suggest that even his “hermeneutic of continuity” can be placed in this same type of context. Many seem to talk as if they know the mind of this Pope – not sure they do. I would strongly suggest that his approval to use the old MR, TLM, etc. was an attempt at mercy for those who felt bypassed by VII reforms…..not sure that this Pope would agree at all with those who have taken this exception and blown it all out of proportion. As some have said here – almost to the point of a church within a church.

  11. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
    Anthony Ruff, OSB

    Revision of of the introductions: this would mean a revision of the GIRM, yes? I wonder what that would entail.

  12. Karl Liam Saur Avatar
    Karl Liam Saur


    Perhaps Archbishop André-Joseph Léonard of Mechelen-Brussels would be “promoted” to replace him?

    1. Jeremy Stevens Avatar
      Jeremy Stevens

      And the hits just keep on comin’!

    2. Philip Sandstrom Avatar
      Philip Sandstrom

      Whatever the virtues of Archbishop Andre-Joseph Leonard,
      ‘knowledgeable liturgist ‘ is not one of them. I fear his experience living in the ‘lions’ den’ of the Church in Malines-Bruxelles (Mechelen-Brussel) would not be helpful in promoting a
      peaceable situation for the Roman Rite. He is seriously trying to do his best in the situation he is in however.

  13. Chuck Terbille Avatar
    Chuck Terbille

    Did anyone share my suspicions that Llovera might have had sometning to do with the “revisions of the revisions” of the English translation of the Roman Missal?

    Do I have the chronology straight? The recognitio was granted under the previous prefect. Then Llovera came on board, then everything started coming unglued. One wonders if B16 raised the subject of the English translation in that cryptic meeting with Llovera about a month ago.

    1. Dunstan Harding Avatar
      Dunstan Harding

      I share your suspicions. The revisions of the revisions have his handiwork all over them. More and more Rome looks like the gang that can’t shoot straight.

  14. Fr. Bryan Pedersen Avatar
    Fr. Bryan Pedersen

    Besides mere rumour or possible calumny what proof does Mr. Inward offer concerning the so-called disaster that is Llovera? Are there prominent vaticanista offering this interpretation? Is it some bishops, dare I say, “of the magic circle” whispering this to him? Is it an echo of this blog’s editorial beliefs on the missal difficulties? Is it concern that the music most likely to be characterized by the Llovera congregation as problematic hail from the Inwood School, or Haas school (sorry DH). Why is it that one man’s disaster is another man’s improvement? (Man is used here in it’s inclusive sense LOL). Personally, I think the interpretation of disaster is colored by the battle that Bugnini wrote about in his memoirs between the Universa Laus crowd versus the Consosciato crowd.

    1. Paul Inwood Avatar
      Paul Inwood

      No bishops, Bryan, just some well-placed people in Rome. I used the phrase “Vatican observers”, if you recall. That section of the post is all reportage from other hands, relayed by me to you.

      I myself offered no comment at all on what Cardinal Llovera said in his interview beyond wondering, if rumours of his unhappiness are true, what concrete impact his proposals might have if he isn’t going to be there for too much longer.

  15. Paul F Ford Avatar

    Hands off the praenotanda, for the balance of this pontificate and beyond! We cannot lose the RCIA and the Lectionary praenotanda.

  16. David Haas Avatar
    David Haas

    I agree with Paul Ford here big time…. the praenotanda for each of the ritual books (while not always consistent with the rituals themselves at times) provides a vision and theology that reflects often the best theological source for these rites. I wish more people (including the liturgists themselves) would read them, especially for the RCIA. If we actually heeded what they say, our sacramental and liturgical practice would look a lot different.

    1. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


      Are they available on their own somewhere (as the GIRM is)? My parish doesn’t have too many spare lectionaries to loan out to people who want to read the praenotanda. 😉

      And it would be nice if they were consistent with the rituals. I know of a disagreement between the General Introduction to the Lectionary and the GIRM/RM on the matter of the Alleluia, whether it MUST be omitted or CAN be omitted if not sung. A minor detail, of course, but clearly one which CAN (or MUST?) be so very easily corrected!

      1. Todd Flowerday Avatar

        The only major one I haven’t posted on my site is the introduction to the Lectionary. They are all available in the rite books. I’ve never seen a published edition without one.

        Agreement with David: this material is required reading for church musicians who work in the sacraments. You can imagine how I think clergy should be prepared both in seminary and in continuing formation with their bishops.

        Frankly, I don’t see this version of reform2 getting tackled. Some of the new CDWDS appointments have probably never read them. Masters of ceremonies point to the black; they simply aren’t schooled in the introductions.

      2. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


        Is the most recent version of the Introduction to the Lectionary from 1981? That’s the one I find online (e.g. here).

      3. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
        Anthony Ruff, OSB


      4. Jeffrey Pinyan Avatar


        The discrepancy I mentioned is:

        “The Alleluia or the verse before the Gospel must be sung, and during it all stand.” (GIL 23)

        “When there is only one reading before the Gospel […] The Alleluia or verse before the Gospel may be omitted if they are not sung.” (GIRM 63)

        The GIRM allows for the Alleluia to be sung, omitted, or spoken (the only alternative I can imagine if the Alleluia is not sung AND is not omitted!).

      5. Paul Inwood Avatar
        Paul Inwood
      6. Paul Inwood Avatar
        Paul Inwood


        This discrepancy has been there in a sense since MR 1969, whose GIRM also stated that the Alleluia could be omitted if not sung.

        One English priest who shall remain nameless was so astonished by this that he wrote to Rome in 1970 asking if they really meant it, that people could actually omit something! He initially got a reply, after about a year, saying yes of course, it says so in GIRM. Two years later still he got another letter saying that the question was being revisited….

        Eventually in 1981 GILM appeared, indicating rather strongly that the Alleluia must be sung (and by implication, therefore, never omitted); and that became the law of the Church, superseding GIRM until the advent of the latest GIRMs in the 2000s when the discrepancy returned once more.

        Much has been made of the para 56 in the latest GIRM, on silence in the Liturgy of the Word, most commentators apparently not being aware that it was lifted almost completely word-for-word from 1981 GILM 28 and had thus been part of our ars celebrandi for over 20 years. GILM 1981 is a much more important document than is sometimes realized.

      7. Samuel J. Howard Avatar

        Frankly, I don’t see this version of reform2 getting tackled. … [MCs] point to the black; they simply aren’t schooled in the introductions.

        Todd, I think you’re combining different issues. Many MC’s, including those who do it professionally, have little grasp of the requirements in the liturgical books generally (Ceremonial of Bishops, GIRM), not just the introductions, let alone the knowledge of the history of liturgy practice, by which I mean pre-reform, not 500 A.D., which is required to intelligently plan and execute the rites in their current sometimes sketchy form.

        You get wierd liturgical solecisms like when the Archbishop of N.Y. was enthroned, you had the participation at the greeting following the enthronement of “Representatives of the clergy, religious, and laity from throughout the Archdiocese of New York as well as of the Orthodox, Protestant, Muslim, Buddhist, and Hindu communities greet Archbishop Dolan.”

        This moment corresponds historically to a pledge of fealty to the Archbishop, it’s not just a “greeting”. This is not the best example, perhaps; it’s actually fairly clear from CB 1143: “…the cathedral chapter, some members at least of the diocesan clergy, members of the faithful, and, … , representatives of the civil authority go to their bishop and offer some sign of obedience and reverence.”

        I can really speak only for myself, who e.g. MC’d all 4 Masses of Christmas, three in the ordinary form & one in the ’62. I’ve read the whole RCIA book & the introduction to the lectionary. I expect I’m not the only one, but I think the subset of people who are MC’s and who are immersed in the reform of the reform project (though I don’t entirely buy reform2 myself, topic for another time) is already vanishingly small in the vast sea of people involved in liturgical ministry.

      8. Rita Ferrone Avatar
        Rita Ferrone

        Jeffrey, the introduction to the RCIA can be found as a free-standing text in Volume One of The Liturgy Documents, LTP.

  17. Louie Verrecchio Avatar

    “One informant says that on the day before the Consistory last month, his talk to the assembled cardinals was so anti-Vatican II that they were apparently furious, and the Pope had to grab the microphone, calm them down, and try to redress the balance.”

    Wow, Paul. Did your “informant” happen to tell you what those “anti-Vatican II” comments were?

    1. Paul Inwood Avatar
      Paul Inwood

      No, he didn’t.

      1. Louie Verrecchio Avatar

        That’s disappointing, Paul, but you did your best… reporting everything you know as responsibly as possible.

        But shame on that “one informant” for letting our imaginations run wild with visions of the Holy Father wresting control of the microphone from the wicked protagonist as the fury of the assembled Princes turned into a thunderous outpouring of grateful applause. That’s what I picture anyway.

        Only problem is, everything in this post attributed to the Holy Father WRT to the liturgy is neither “anti-Vatican II” nor out of character with anything he has previous stated.

      2. Paul Inwood Avatar
        Paul Inwood

        I think there’s probably quite a difference between whatever the Cardinal said before the Consistory and what he said in his interview.

  18. Louie Verrecchio Avatar

    Well that explains everything, Paul. No wonder the pope had to grab the microphone! LOL!

  19. Jeffrey Herbert Avatar

    I think that one would also have to be careful about the term “Anti-Vatican II”. For some, that represents the position of, say, the SSPX, while for others it is simply any challenge to the so-called “Spirit of Vatican II” and it’s many and questionable facets. Is calling for a restoration of Catholic Sacred Music (i.e – Chant, Latin Polyphony, Contemporary sacred choral music) really “anti-Vatican II”? I would say not.

    The statements of Cardinal Llovera seem to fall into the latter category.

  20. Louie Verrecchio Avatar

    “Is calling for a restoration of Catholic Sacred Music (i.e – Chant, Latin Polyphony, Contemporary sacred choral music) really “anti-Vatican II”? I would say not.”

    I would agree, but surely you can understand how Cd. Cañizares’ comments must seem awfully threatening to those who think “pro-Vatican II” represents a license to inflict on Holy Mass songs that have all of the sacred dignity of “Pop Goes the Weasel.”

    I think Paul Inwood has indulged in some very wishful thinking here (and no small amount of projection) by characterizing His Eminence’s plans to implement guidelines for sacred music as “the dying throes of a brief regime.” It’s kind of like a buggy whip salesman predicting Henry Ford’s demise at the turn of the century.

    Whether or not Cd. Cañizares’ tenure ends in two weeks or two years, I think it’s reasonable to expect the Holy Father’s desire to recover the lost treasure of sacred music to be taken up by his successor at CDW.

    1. Paul Inwood Avatar
      Paul Inwood

      It’s kind of like a buggy whip salesman predicting Henry Ford’s demise at the turn of the century.

      A wonderful image! — but I think you have it the wrong way round. I’m Henry Ford and you’re driving the buggy….

  21. Michelle Marie Romani Avatar
    Michelle Marie Romani

    I actually think that Cardinal Canizares’ proposals are a true breath of fresh air. We have long been subjected to banal music that sounds more and more like something from a bad pop station than truly sacred. It seems to me that the ones who are complaining are either afiliated with the publishing houses that promote this wolf-disguised-as-a-lamb stuff rather than provide their customers with authentic sacred music. There needs to be quality control. Unfortunately, such is absent from the big three publishers. In the end, the Holy Sacrifice suffers from this banality.

  22. WIll Roach Avatar
    WIll Roach

    Jesus needs quality control? Since when does He need handlers to approve of our relationship with him? 54 posts- How many mention sacred music, or politics- and how many mention Jesus, or the gospels?

  23. Paul Inwood Avatar
    Paul Inwood

    More Vatican observers surfacing after the Christmas holiday to confirm that the new department for art and sacred music will be set up soon, but is likely to be ‘a corner seat, not very meaningful’. Others say that since ‘things are not going very well with the present Prefect’ this department may well ‘stay under wraps’ for some considerable time…..

  24. George Andrews Avatar
    George Andrews

    Father R>>The other language groups have not implemented missals following LA yet, and every indication is that they will not because their bishops do not believe in this……The Portuguese says “And also with you,” not “And with your spirit.” The Japanese says “And with the priest”….It’s not true that we would join the rest of the world with the coming missal.<<

    …and the French leave out 'roof'. That pretty well sums it up?

    Both Father and I are pontificating! He declares the new translation distances us from what is said by non-English speaking Catholics. I declare that it will bring us all closer to one another. These are matters of fact, if someone will do some homework. Would that same someone please refer me to one other translation besides ours that does *all* of the following…

    1)excises mention of the Christ taking on flesh from the Nicene Creed
    2)places 'Deus Pater…' before the 'Laudamus…' in the Gloria-to the exclusion of the Son and Holy Spirit.
    3)excises at least one 'miserere nobis' and one 'qui tollis peccata mundi' from same.
    4)excises 'spirit' from 'et cum spiritu…
    5)excises 'mea maxima culpa'
    6)excises 'soul' from 'my soul shall be healed'.

    …if you can’t, then it is only logical that the above renderings-which are only a sampling- were introduced with no regard for how the rest of the world’s Catholics pray. There was obviously an agenda in 1973, but catholicity wasn’t it.

    Both Father and I are familiar with the German missal. Can someone please show me even one phrase where the 1973 icel is more literal than the German? If Father is correct, then that should be a snap!

    Do either of the above and I will rescind/abjure/recant my claim that the new translation will bring us closer to what most of the world’s Catholics already say and pray. Otherwise….

  25. Anthony Ruff, OSB Avatar
    Anthony Ruff, OSB

    I think we have different ideas of catholicity, which makes it rather difficult to discuss this issue. You seem to want to add up the number of words which are uniform across language groups, assuming that whatever is closer to uniformity is more catholic. I reject the premise.

    If we switch to “and with your spirit” we’ll be closer to the German and French and Spanish speakers, but further from the Portuguese speakers. If we’re stuck on math I suppose we’ll add up how many Catholics there are in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Haiti, etc., versus how many are in Portugal and Brazil – and maybe we’ll find we’re moving closer to more people than we’re moving further from. I think this misses the point.

    Catholicity is when each language group has a really good text, faithful to the Roman Catholic liturgical tradition but in language appropriate to its culture. Lots of diversity, perhaps; but the more each local liturgy is Spirit-filled (not merely uniform), the more the Spirit brings forth Catholic unity from the diversity.

    I suspect you don’t buy my understanding of catholicity. My point was, even if we go with your understanding of catholicity, we’re not getting it with our new translation. And we never will, the way things look. The other major language groups aren’t buying the Vatican’s ideal of uniformity.

    And then there are all the language groups which never send their translations to Rome – e.g. every small African tribe which knows that no one in the Roman curia speaks its liturgical language. They too are Roman Catholic.


  26. George Andrews Avatar
    George Andrews

    >>assuming that whatever is closer to uniformity is more catholic. I reject the premise….<<

    that's a good thing. Being ‘Catholic’ better not have anything to do with ‘uniformity’, otherwise Father's logical argument collapses. I asked for specifics….who else besides us shares the above mentioned renderings [I suspect , since no one has stepped up to the plate, the answer is… no one!]I also asked …for just even one instance where the German missal out-dynamic-equivalates the 1973 ICEL? [Again, Fr. declined the challenge because he knows as well as anyone, that the current German translation is in all respects more literal than ours.]…..

    Rejecting my premise – Father did ntl 'go there' alluding to the Portuguese excising 'spirit'. So, Portuguese it is. Let’s examine Father’s only salvation in this argument. What of other renderings in Portuguese?

    let's googlize!

    Uh-oh! 'minha tão grande culpa' . I think I know what ‘grande’ means. That doesn't fit the 73 ICEL…that was just my first try! shall we go further?
    Uh-0h! 'E encarnou pelo Espírito Santo' .
    It looks like Our Lord ‘took on flesh’ in Portuguese! Hmmm. Don’t they know V II took that out?!
    Uh-oh! ‘e paz na terra aos homens ‘ . What?! No peace to ‘personages’? ' Those chaouvinists!
    Uh-oh! ‘Vós que tirais o pecado do mundo' and 'tende piedade de nós' each twice in the Gloria? and they don’t put ‘receive our prayer’ after ‘you are seated at the right hand…’? What are they thinking of?!!
    Uh-oh! ‘Creio em um só Deus’ . That looks like first person singular to me!
    Uh-oh! ‘consubstancial ao Pai’. What language are they speaking!?

    The Portuguese does diverge from the Latin. Maybe in 50 years they will come up on the CDW radar. But will Father tell me with a straight face that the 73 ICEL is just as literal as the Portuguese? In most instances, like those mentioned above, we and Brazil will…

  27. George Andrews Avatar
    George Andrews

    ….soon be saying and praying the same thing. Currently we don’t.

    I really wish someone would seriously take up the challenge and try to prove that the 73 ICEL is not the most:
    1) truncated and 2) innaccurate Catholic missal translation in all the world.

    Please give me a lead. Portuguese didn’t pan out.

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