Friday, March 3, 2017

HOW RARE IS THIS?

Posted by Tim

Per the Cathedral Rector's instruction to the Agana parish of February 14, 2017, the deadline ("before Ash Wednesday") for submitting a copy of the indult granting a particular group official permission to deviate from the General Instruction for the Roman Missal in its particular celebration of the Holy Eucharist has come and gone. 

Given that there are at least two Neocatechumenal Way "communities" supposedly associated with the Agana parish, the following should have been deposited on the Rector's desk "before Ash Wednesday:"

Article 13 of the Final Approved Text of the Statute of the Neocatechumenal Way, dated June 2008, wherein the following is permitted:
  1. Celebration of the the Sunday Eucharist in the small community after the first Vespers of Sunday (Saturday evening). 
  2. Reception of the Holy Communion under both species.
  3. Reception of Holy Communion "standing, remaining at their place." 
  4. "Explicit concessions from the Holy See" as detailed in Footnote No. 49, which in addition to mentioning again reception of Holy Communion under both species, adds the "transfer 'ad experimentum' the Rite of Peace to after the Prayer of the Faithful.” 
and the SPECIAL INDULT (which on December 15, 2014 Archbishop Apuron said that he would find): 
  1. Permitting the celebrant to delay his reception of the sacred species until after he has distributed the consecrated bread to the communicants, and 
  2. Permitting the communicants to delay consumption of the consecrated bread until the distribution of the consecrated bread to all the communicants has been completed and the communicants have all returned to their seats. 
The production of Article 13 of the Statute should have been easy enough to produce, but what about the SPECIAL INDULT? If anything, the Cathedral Rector may have received what amounts to no more than an internal memo from a certain Cardinal Rylko instructing Kiko to proceed with his illicit communion rite. But actually if there is such a memo it would not be in Rylko's hand or signed by him. It would be from Kiko saying that he spoke with Rylko and is passing on the instruction. 

Sorry, NCW, that does not qualify as an indult, and in any case, in order for it to be so, it would have had to have been issued directly by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments at the personal request of the pope. At most, the neocats will quote a former prefect of the CDW, speaking only in his personal capacity and saying that he didn't see anything wrong with the neocat liturgy. Again, sorry guys, that doesn't qualify as an Indult.  Plus we know how you guys can switch on a dime to do a liturgy by the book if you need to. 

Whether or not anything at all was produced per the Cathedral Rector's instruction is something only he can verify, and of course, enforcement is now wholly up to him. (It's actually up to Archbishop Byrnes, but we'll leave him aside for now since the Cathedral Rector apparently had the authority to issue the instruction all by himself.)

In general, though, a hearty KUDO for the February 14 instruction since it is not just the neocats who take liberties with the Sacred Liturgy. And it is greatly hoped that strict adherence to the "letter and spirit" of the liturgical books will produce a purity in our liturgical celebrations unencumbered by the penchant to doctor it to personal tastes. 

Speaking of "personal tastes," now that we have addressed the importance of celebrating the Holy Mass per the prescripts of the Universal Church, let us NOW do the same with the music, for what the GIRM is to the celebration of the Mass, the post-conciliar document MUSICAM SACRAM is to the music employed at the same celebration.

MUSICAM SACRAM was produced by the "Consilium set up to implement the Constitution on the Liturgy, on the instructions of the Holy Father...," and "In the audience granted on 9 February, 1967 to His Eminence Arcadio M. Cardinal Larraona, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation of Rites, His Holiness Pope Paul VI approved and confirmed the present Instruction by his authority, ordered it to be published and at the same time established that it should come into force on Pentecost Sunday 14 May, 1967."

At its core, MUSICAM SACRAM requires that the Mass itself be sung (versus the mere singing of additional songs or hymns). Copied below is the essential part of the instruction:
27. For the celebration of the Eucharist with the people, especially on Sundays and feast days, a form of sung Mass (Missa in cantu) is to be preferred as much as possible, even several times on the same day. 
28. The distinction between solemn, sung and read Mass, sanctioned by the Instruction of 1958 (n. 3), is retained, according to the traditional liturgical laws at present in force. However, for the sung Mass (Missa cantata), different degrees of participation are put forward here for reasons of pastoral usefulness, so that it may become easier to make the celebration of Mass more beautiful by singing, according to the capabilities of each congregation. 
These degrees are so arranged that the first may be used even by itself, but the second and third, wholly or partially, may never be used without the first. In this way the faithful will be continually led towards an ever greater participation in the singing. 
29. The following belong to the first degree: 
(a) In the entrance rites: the greeting of the priest together with the reply of the people; the prayer.
(b) In the Liturgy of the Word: the acclamations at the Gospel.
(c) In the Eucharistic Liturgy: the prayer over the offerings; the preface with its dialogue and the Sanctus; the final doxology of the Canon, the Lord's prayer with its introduction and embolism; the Pax Domini; the prayer after the Communion; the formulas of dismissal. 
30. The following belong to the second degree:
(a) the Kyrie, Gloria and Agnus Dei;
(b) the Creed;
(c) the prayer of the faithful. 
31. The following belong to the third degree:
(a) the songs at the Entrance and Communion processions;
(b) the songs after the Lesson or Epistle;
(c) the Alleluia before the Gospel;
(d) the song at the Offertory;
(e) the readings of Sacred Scripture, unless it seems more suitable to proclaim them without singing.
I would like to call your attention again to this part of par. 28:
These degrees are so arranged that the first may be used even by itself, but the second and third, wholly or partially, may never be used without the first. In this way the faithful will be continually led towards an ever greater participation in the singing.
When I first read this document I was struck by the great concern our Church has for the faithful to "be continually led towards an ever greater participation in the singing." The people are not just to sing along with a choir, but are to sing the Mass itself in response to the Celebrant. This is why the second and third degrees "may never be used without the first." The first degree being:
(a) In the entrance rites: the greeting of the priest together with the reply of the people; the prayer.
(b) In the Liturgy of the Word: the acclamations at the Gospel.
(c) In the Eucharistic Liturgy: the prayer over the offerings; the preface with its dialogue and the Sanctus; the final doxology of the Canon, the Lord's prayer with its introduction and embolism; the Pax Domini; the prayer after the Communion; the formulas of dismissal.
Here we see that at its most basic, if there is no other music, there is at least the sung dialogue between people and priest. How beautiful is this! How rare is this?

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