Benediktinerne i Norcia skal feire både den gamle og den nye messen

Benediktinerne i moderklosteret i Norcia i Italia har – etter forespørsel fra Vatikanet – bestemt at de skal feire både den nye og den gamle messen i sitt kloster. I april i år sendte kardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, President i kommisjonen “Ecclesia Dei” følgende brev til klosterets prior, p. Cassian Folsom, OSB:

His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, from the very beginning of his pontificate, has made known his desire to foster the unity of the Church. As in the past so also today, the careful celebration of the Sacred Mysteries is a most efficacious instrument for achieving this goal.

For this reason, fatihful to the intentions of the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, this Pontifical Commission, responding to your request, entrusts to the Monastery of San Benedetto in Norcia the special apostolate of the celebration of the Holy Eucharist “in utroque usu”, that is, both in the ordinary as well as the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite, in collaboration with the Holy See and in communion with the diocesan bishop.

I am confident that your young Benedictine community will always support the pastoral activity of the Supreme Pontiff with faithful prayer.

I klosterets nyhetsbrev (pdf) kan man nå lese (som jeg allerede har nevnt) at de skal feire messen i “in utroque usu”, og i et intervju i dette nyhetsbrevet svarer prioren på spørsmål om hvorfor de gjør dette:

Does this decision respect the Second Vatican Council Council?

It would be useful to read carefully the Council document on the Liturgy, SC 22 says that: “Regulation of the sacred liturgy depends solely on the authority of the Church, that is, on the Apostolic See and, as laws may determine, on the bishop.” Pope Benedict’s Motu Proprio simply reiterates that principle, and legislates for the use of the old rite alongside the new. Pope Benedict also emphasizes that the way to interpret the Council documents is by the hermeneutic of continuity. That principle is also expressed in the document on the liturgy where it says: “…care must be taken that any new forms adopted should in some way grow organically from forms already existing” (SC 23What we’re really talking about here is legitimate pluralism, which the Council advocates as well: “Even in the liturgy, the Church has no wish to impose a rigid uniformity in matters which do not involve the faith or the good of the whole community” (SC 37). So the celebration of the Mass by all means respects the Second Vatican Council. We are embracing both usages, and reaching out to other groups in search of unity. That’s a very conciliar approach.

But doesn’t this mean “turning back the clock”?

On the contrary, I see a monastery “utriusque usus” as very forward looking, especially in terms of authentic ecumenism. By that I mean two things. First, the ethos of the extraordinary form is very similar to the ethos of the many oriental rites, and therefore celebrating the Eucharist according to both the and the allows us to serve as a bridge between East and West. Second, I think we need a good dose of “internal ecumenism” in the Church, so as to be able to dialogue with Catholics attached to the older liturgical forms without ideological prejudice.

How can you, as a liturgist, justify such a decision?

It is precisely as a liturgist that I have had the opportunity to study and experience the rich variety of liturgical traditions that exist within the Church. It is “politically correct” for Latin rite Catholics to be enthusiastic about the Byzantine rite. Why isn’t it “politically correct” to be enthusiastic about the extraordinary form as well? The history of the liturgy shows clearly a multiplicity of usages within the one Roman rite. It is thanks to many years of studying the liturgy that I came to see the importance of this unity in diversity. In fact, I argued this point in the presence of the then-Cardinal Ratzinger at a liturgical conference held at Fontgombault in France in 1997. As a liturgist, I would also like to say that there is no perfect rite; there are positive and negative aspects in every liturgical tradition. The only perfect liturgy is the heavenly one. In addition, both the extraordinary and the ordinary form can be celebrated well or celebrated poorly. For a comparison to be fair, we have to place the best of both side by side.

How can the two usages influence each other?

The ordinary form stresses such elements as the participation of the faithful, the use of the vernacular, the ongoing development of the liturgy by the addition of new saints to the calendar, etc.: these are all very important. At the risk of oversimplifying, I would say that the ordinary form stresses rational understanding, speaking in prose, as it were. The extraordinary form provides rich food for the intellect also, but relies heavily on gesture, symbolism, intuition, silence, ritual action without words, speaking in poetry, you might say. Man knows both rationally and intuitively. He needs both prose and poetry. If the two usages, like two different cultures, can patiently live with each other over time, they can become friends.

Både NLM og Father Z. skriver om dette.

4 hendelser på “Benediktinerne i Norcia skal feire både den gamle og den nye messen”

  1. Flott at begge (!) messeformer skal feiers. Høres ut som en svært god idé. Mangfold er som regel et gode. Det er jo ikke noe galt med TLM (i så fall ville ikke Kirken ha feiret den); det er heller ikke noe galt med NO (som for mange fremstår som mer bibelsk — jf. J. Danielou: The Bible and the Liturgy; A. Fjeld (red.): Fem foredrag om messen). Kanskje det liturgiske liv blir enda rikere ved å kunne trekke veksler på de to måtene å frembringe det hellige messeoffer på?

  2. Sverre Dehli

    Dette er virkelig noe å glede seg over ! TLM vinner stadig mer terreng !

    Sverre D.

  3. Du er blitt så mye mer positiv til tradisjonalistiske elementer i Kirken, Maria, og til den gamle messen i det siste – slik har jeg oppfatta det i alle fall. Hva har skjedd?

  4. Oddvar, jeg har hele tiden vært positiv til at en kan feire TLM. Det jeg ikke forstår, er tanken om at TLM er så mye bedre enn NO. D e t er jeg ikke enig i. Tvert imot mener jeg de to messeformene utfyller hverandre. Og jeg er stor tilhenger av mangfold. At jeg personlig ikke føler meg hjemme i TLM er ikke mer betydningsfullt enn at det fremdeles fins mennesker som ikke føler seg hjemme i NO. Ikke alle av Kirkens tradisjoner er like viktige for meg. Men jeg anerkjenner deres rettmessige plass som del av vår felleskristne arv. Jeg ville ikke ha vært dem foruten. Derfor ønsker jeg at TLM igjen skal løftes frem der den hører hjemme, som en naturlig del av Kirkens liturgiske liv. Det som kanskje skiller meg fra andre som er svært positive til TLM, er at jeg forbeholder meg retten til å være glad i NO og føle meg hjemme i den liturgiske tradisjon den er uttrykk for. Som barn av Vaticanum II vil jeg ha mangfold, og dermed frihet for dem som har andre liturgiske preferanser enn meg selv. Det har aldri vært i konsilets ånd å ville undertrykke eller forby TLM.

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