"The Roman Liturgy Page" - a critique
presented below is directed at the contents of "The Roman Liturgy" page, not at
the author himself. I quote the page itself, so as to not misrepresent it, as it
stood in April/May 1997.
1. The Fruits of the CouncilThe Roman Liturgy Page states:
"One of the great fruits of the second sacred and oecumenical Council of
the Vatican was the reform of the Roman Liturgy used by most of the Latin
Church." - from the title pageLet's examine some factual fruits of the
Statistics in England and Wales:
Baptisms Marriages Conversions Mass
1962 134,017 45,432 13,280 2,092,667
1994 76,338 18,359 6,250 1,190,307 (Diocesan figures submitted to
the National Statistics Centre, quoted in Christian Order, January,
Together with a annual drop of about 55,000 in Mass attendence per
year, at present. Moreover, those Catholics who do still attend Mass have little
of the faith in them. For instance, 70% of American Catholics do not believe in
transubstantiation, and have thus lost the faith.
Joseph Ratzinger (the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
- i.e. the Pope's right hand man) has said in his recent autobiograpy:
"I was dismayed [by the ban of the old missal]. Such a development had
never been seen in the history of the liturgy. I am convinced that the
ecclesiastical crisis of today depends on the collapse of the liturgy . .
." (emphasis mine)All I can say is that a claim of "great fruits" in
relation to Vatican II is completely without foundation.
2. The New Mass and what the Council decreedThe Roman Liturgy page
"Among those who discuss the current Roman liturgy of the Catholic Church,
and especially on the net, there is what seems to me to be a great deal of
historical revisionism and simple misinformation about the liturgy. For
example, some claim that the reform of the Mass, which reached one stage of
its completion in the current Missale Romanum, has not been faithful to what
the fathers of the second sacred and oecumenical Council of the Vatican
decreed." - title pageTo counter this charge of "historical revisionism",
let us review what Vatican II actually said on the liturgy, and what
authoritative figures themselves think (who, I assume, are not "on the
The Constitution of the Sacred Liturgy, official document of
the Second Vatican Council:
"In faithful obedience to tradition,
this most sacred Council declares that Holy Mother Church holds all lawfully
acknowledges rites to be of equal authority and dignity; that she wishes to
preserve them in the future and foster them in every way." [article 4] (how
is introducing a fabricated liturgy, supressing the previous one, preserving and
fostering the traditional rite of Mass in the Latin Church?)
restoration, both texts and rites should be drawn up so that they express more
clearly the holy things which they signify." [article 21] (how does drawing
up a new rite of Mass along the lines of Cranmer and Luther express the holy
things more clearly?)
"There must be no innovations unless the good
of the Church genuinely and certainly requires them; and care must be taken that
any new forms adopted should in some way grow organically from forms already
existing." [article 23] (has the new rite of Mass truly grown "organically"
from the traditional Mass that preceeded it, or does it "grow organically" from
the reforms of the 16th century?)
"The use of the Latin language,
with due respect to particular law, is to be preserved in the Latin rites"
[article 36] (need I say that Latin has all but vanished from the Latin
"Steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able
to say or sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the mass which
pertain to them" [article 54] (- how can the faithful be encouraged to say or
sing the Latin that pertains to them if there is no Latin to say or
"The treasury of sacred music is to be preserved and fostered
with great care" [article 114] (the treasury of sacred music of the Church
has all but been dumped for banal and secular music)
acknowledges Gregorian Chant as proper to the Roman liturgy; therefore, other
things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services"
[article 116] (how often do you hear Gregorian Chant in your parish
So, is the New Mass
Authoritive quotations relating to the Mass and
what the Council acutally decreed:
"The New Order teems with insinuations or manifest errors against the
purity of the Catholic religion and dismantles all defences of the deposit of
Faith." [did Vatican II decree insinuations and manifest errors against the
purity of the faith?] "The Apostolic Constitution itself gives the coup de
grace to the Church's universal language (contrary to the express will of
Vatican Council II) with the bland affirmation that "in such a variety of
tongues one (?) and the same prayer of all . . . may ascend more fragrant than
- Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci, "The Ottaviani Intervention"
"We are in a veritable landslide of vulgarization. What was intended by
Vatican Council II as a means of making the liturgy more easily understood by
the average Christian, has turned out to be something more like an orgy of
stripping it of all sense of reverence, bringing it down to the level of
commonness where the very people for whom the changes were made now only yawn
out of sheer boredom with the banality of the result."
- Archbishop R.J. Dwyer of Portland, Oregon,
Parish Bulletin (Glenview, Ill.), 26 July 1970.
"Archbishop R.J. Dwyer accepted with the benefit of hindsight, that the
great mistake of the Council Fathers was "to allow the implementation of the
Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy to fall into the hands of the men who were
either unscrupulous or incompetent. This is the so-called 'Liturgical
Establishment,' a Sacred Cow which acts more like a white elephant as it
tramples the shards of a shattered liturgy with ponderous abandon."
- Pope Paul's New Mass by Michael Davies (available from
The Angelus Press), page 607, quoting Archbishop R.J. Dwyer of Portland, Oregon,
from The Tidings, 9 July, 1971.
"Archbishop R.J. Dwyer, writing of the euphoric spirit of the Fathers on
the day they voted in favor of the Constitution by 2,147 votes to 4, comments
with the sadness and wisdom of hindsight:
Who dreamed on that day that within a few years, far less than a decade,
the Latin past of the Church would be all but expunged, that it would be
reduced to a memory fading in the middle distance? The thought of it would
have horrified us, but it seemed so far beyond the realm of the possible as
to be ridiculous. So we laughed it off."
- from Pope John's Council by Michael Davies, page 224,
quoting Archbishop R.J. Dwyer in the Twin Circle, 26 October,
"When on 7 December 1962, the bishops voted overwhelmingly (1,922 against
11) in favor of the first chapter of the Constitution on the Liturgy they did
not realize that they were initiating a process which after the Council would
cause confusion and bitterness throughout the Church."
- Cardinal Heenan of England and Wales, The Crown of Thorns
(London, 1974), p.æ367.
"One prelate, who fulfilled important functions during the Council, has
expressed himself very strongly on this matter:
I regret having voted in favor of the Council Constitution in whose name
(but in what a manner!) this heretical pseudo-reform has been carried out, a
triumph of arrogance and ignorance. If it were possible, I would take back
my vote, and attest before a magistrate that my assent had been obtained
- from Pope John's Council by Michael Davies, page 224,
quoting a prelate of the Council.
With views which obviously go against the
grain like that,
no wonder Davies decides not to print his name!
"Fr. Louis Bouyer, an outstanding figure in the pre-conciliar Liturgical
Movement, claims that
in no other area is there a greater distance (and even formal
opposition) between what the Council worked out and what we actually have
... I now have the impressed, and I am not alone, that those who took it
upon themselves to apply (?) the Council's directives on this point have
turned their backs to deliberately on what Beauduin, Casel, and Pius Parsh
had set out to do, and to which I had tried vainly to add some small
contribution of my own. I do not wish to vouch for the truth, or seem to, at
any greater length of this denial and imposture. If any are still
interested, they may read the books I wrote on the subject; there are only
too many of these! Or better, they might read the books of the experts I
have just mentioned, on whom they have been able to turn their backs..."
- from Pope John's Council by Michael Davies, page 224,
quoting Fr. Louis Bouyer in The Decomposition of Catholicism, page 99
"In 1964 Father Bouyer wrote an enthusiastic appreciation of the Liturgy
Constitution entitled The Liturgy Revived, which predicted the
flowering of a great liturgical renewal. He had become totally disillusioned
by 1968 and wrote a scathing denunciation of the manner in which the reform
was developing in practice, entitled The Decomposition of Catholicism,
in which he states that not only is there formal opposition between what the
Council required and what we actually have, but that, in practice, the reform
constitutes a repudiation of the papally approved liturgical movement to which
he had contributed" (see the above quotation)
- Liturgical Shipwreck 25 Years of the New Mass, by
Michael Davies, TAN.
"Certainly, the results [of Vatican II] seem cruelly opposed to the
expectations of everyone, beginning with those of Pope John XXIII and then of
Paul VI: expected was a new Catholic unity and instead we have been exposed to
a dissension which - to use the words of Pope Paul VI - seems to have gone
from self-criticism to self-destruction. Expected was a new enthusiasm, and
many wound up discouraged and bored. Expected was a great step forward, and
instead we find ourselves faced with a progressive process of decadence which
had developed for the most part precisely under the sign of a calling back to
the Council, and has therefore contributed to discrediting it for many. The
net result therefore seems negative. I am repeating here what I said then
years after the conclusion of the work: it is incontrovertible that this
period has definitely been unfavorable for the Catholic Church"
- Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect for the Doctrine of the
in L'Osservatore Romano (English edition), 24 December,
"As for the oriented (i.e., turned to the East) altar, the Cardinal notes,
in his preface for the French edition:
The importance of this book lies above all in the theological substratum
brought to light by this learned research. The orientation of prayer, common
to priest and faithful - of which the symbolical form was usually towards
the East, i.e., towards the rising sun - was understood as turning our eyes
towards the Lord, the true Sun. In the liturgy we find an anticipation of
His return; priests and faithful go to meet Him. This orientation of prayer
expresses the theocentric nature of liturgy; it obeys the exhortation: "Let
us turn towards the Lord!" "
- F. Gerard Calvet, O.S.B., Abbot, Monastery of St. Madeleine, Le
Barroux, France, quoting Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Prefect of the Doctrine of
Faith (Gerald Calvet, O.S.B. wrote the first preface of the English edition)
"What happened after the Council was something else entirely: in the place
of liturgy as the fruit of development came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned
the organic, living process of growth and development over centuries, and
replaced it - as in a manufacturing process - with a fabrication, a banal
- Cardinal Ratzinger's Preface to the book The Reform of the
Roman Liturgy by Mgr. Klaus Gamber (quoted below).Mgr. Gamber, who
Cardinal Ratzinger describes as:
"Gamber, with the vigilance of a true prophet and the courage of a true
witness, opposed this falsification, and, thanks to his incredibly rich
knowledge, indefatigably taught us about the living fullness of a true
liturgy. As a man who knew and loved history, he showed us the multiple forms
and paths of liturgical development; as a man who looked at history from the
inside, he saw in this development and its fruit the intangible reflection of
the eternal liturgy, that which is not the object of our action but which can
continue marvellously to mature and blossom if we unite ourselves intimately
with its mystery. The death of this eminent man and priest should spur us on;
his work should give us a new impetus" (from Cdl. Ratzinger's preface to the
book "The Reform of the Roman Liturgy", by Mgr. Klaus Gamber)says:
"Although the argument is used over and over again by the people
responsible for creating the new Mass, they cannot claim that what they have
done is what the Council actually wanted ... the new Ordo of the Mass that has
now emerged would not have been endorsed by the majority of the Council
Fathers" (page 61, Mgr. Gamber)
3. The Traditional Mass and St. Gregory the GreatThe Roman Liturgy page
"Still others assert, of course without adducing the slightest bit of
evidence, that the order of Mass used before the Conciliar reforms stretched
back all the way to our holy father among the saints, Gregory the Great,
bishop of Rome AD 590 - 604." - title pageNow, I have not come across
anyone who says that the complete order of Mass is the same as used by St.
Gregory. However, it is clear from liturgical history that the Canon of the Mass
(now called the "Eucharistic Prayer") used before Vatican II certainly is that
of St. Gregory the Great. If this is what is disputed, I provide the following
Pope Paul VI says in Missale Romanum:
"The most remarkable of the new features are those which concern the great
Eucharistic Prayer, as it is called nowadays. In the Roman rite the first part
of this prayer, known as the Preface, has indeed acquired many different texts
in the course of the centuries; but the second part, known as the Canon,
assumed an unchanging form about the fourth or fifth century. By contrast,
the oriental liturgies have ever admitted a certain variety in their anaphoras
(prayers expressing the sacrificial offering)." (emphasis mine)from the pen
of Pope Paul VI himself!
Liturgical scholars, through history, agree with
this observation. Father Louis Bouyer, who was one of the leaders of the
pre-Vatican II liturgical movement, stated:
"The Roman Canon, such as it is today, goes back to St. Gregory the Great.
Neither in East nor West is there any Eucharistic prayer remaining in use
today that can boast such antiquity. For the roman Church to throw it
overboard would be tantamount, in the eyes not only of the Orthodox, but also
of the Anglicans and even Protestants having still to some extent a sense of
tradition, to a denial of all claim any more to be the true Catholic
- quoted in "A Short History of the Roman Mass" by Michael
Davies, TAN.Father David Knowles, considered by Michael Davies as Britain's
most distinguished Catholic scholar until his death in 1974, has stated:
"The Missal of 1570 was indeed the result of instructions given at Trent,
but it was, in fact, as regards the Ordinary, Canon, Proper of the time and
much else a replica of the roman Missal of 1474, which in its turn repeated in
all essentials the practice of the Roman Church of the epoch of Innocent II
[1198-1216], which itself derived from the usage of Gregory the Great
[590-604] and his successors in the seventh century. IN short, the Missal of
1570 was, in all essentials, the usage of the mainstream of medieval European
liturgy, which included England and all its rites"
- quoted in "A Short History of the Roman Mass" by Michael
Davies, TAN.Father Fortescue, the great liturgist of the century, has
"There is, moreover, a constant tradition that St. Gregory was the last to
touch the essential part of the Mass, namely the Canon. Benedict XIV
(1740-1758) says: "No pope has added to or changed the Canon since St.
Gregory"" (emphasis mine)
- "The Mass: A Study of the Roman Liturgy", 1912, page 172and
"All later modifications were fitted into the old arrangement, and the
most important parts were not touched. From, roughly, the time of St. Gregory
we have the text of the Mass, its order and arragement, as a sacred tradition
that no one has ventured to touch except in unimportant details" (page173)I
hope I have given enough evidence to counter the page's accusation: "without
adducing the slightest bit of evidence"!
4. Four Orders of MassThe Roman Liturgy page states:
"I have made available here four orders of Mass which have been used at
various times in the Roman Church, which together with brief notes I have
added might provide what seems to me a more accurate picture of Roman
liturgical history" - title pageLet us examine two of these orders of Mass,
one from 700 AD (the time of St. Gregory the Great), and 1951 AD. In particular,
I will present the Canon of the Mass of the two orders. It is well known that
the Canon of the Mass as modified by St. Gregory the Great and up until 1962 was
- in all its essentials - identical (see above). This is proven by a quote by
Pope Paul VI above, and also by other liturgical authorities through the
centuries. Compare the following versions:
The Canon of Mass at the time
of 700 AD according to the Roman Liturgy page:
And when they have finished it, the pontiff rises alone and enters on
the canon. The bishops, however, and the deacons, subdeacons, and prebyters
remain in the presbytery and bow themselves down. Now when the pontiff says,
The Canon, as presented, for the Roman liturgy as of 1951:
Nobis quoque peccatoribus...
the subdeacons rise up, and when he says,
Per quem hæc omnia...
the archdeacon rises alone. When the pontiff says,
Per ipsum, et cum ipso...
the archdeacon lifts up the chalice with the offertory veil passed
through its handles, and, holding it, raises it towards the pontiff. Then the
pontiff touches the side of the chalice with the loaves saying,
Per ipsum, et cum ipso... as far as Per omnia sæcula sæculorum.
Te igitur, clementissime Pater,A huge difference! From the first Canon,
we have lots of rubrical instructions and four lines of Latin - two of which are
the same. In the second Canon, there are no rubrics at all and no less than 125
lines of Latin text. Is this a serious comparison? A "more accurate picture of
Roman liturgical history" - I don't think so!
per Iesum Christum Filium tuum, Dominum
supplices rogamus, ac petimus,
uti accepta habeas, et
hæc dona, hæc munera, hæc sancta sacrificia illibata,
primis, quæ tibi offerimus
pro Ecclesia tua sancta catholica:
pacificare, custodire, adunare,
et regere digneris toto orbe
una cum famulo tuo Papa nostro N.
et Antistite nostro
et omnibus orthodoxis,
atque catholicæ, et apostolicæ fidei
Memento, Domine, famulorum, famularumque tuarum N. et
et omnium circumstantium,
quorum tibi fides cognita est, et nota
pro quibus tibi offerimus:
vel qui tibi offerunt hoc
pro se, suisque omnibus:
pro redemptione animarum
pro spe salutis, et incolumitatis suæ:
tibique reddunt vota
æterno Deo, vivo et vero.
Communicantes, et memoriam
in primis gloriosæ semper Virginis Mariæ,
Genetricis Dei et
Domini nostri Iesu Christi:
sed et beatorum Apostolorum ac Martyrum
Petri et Pauli, Andreæ,
Iacobi, Ioannis, Thomæ, Iacobi,
Bartholomæi, Matthæi, Simonis, et Thaddæi:
Cornelii, Cypriani, Laurentii, Chrysogoni,
Pauli, Cosmæ et Damiani:
et omnium Sanctorum tuorum;
ut in omnibus protectionis tuæ muniamur
Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.
oblationem servitutis nostræ,
sed et cunctæ familiæ tuæ,
Domine, ut placatus accipias:
diesque nostros in tua pace
atque ab æterna damnatione nos eripi
et in electorum tuorum
iubeas grege numerari.
Per Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.
oblationem tu, Deus,
in omnibus, quæsumus,
rationabilem, acceptabilemque facere digneris:
ut nobis Corpus et
Sanguis fiat dilectissimi Filii tui
Domini nostri Iesu Christi.
pridie quam pateretur,
accepit panem in sanctas ac venerabiles manus
et elevatis oculis in cælum
ad te Deum Patrem suum
tibi gratias agens, benedixit,
fregit, deditque discipulis
Accipite, et manducate ex hoc omnes.
Hoc est enim
Simili modo postquam coenatum est,
accipiens et hunc
in sanctas ac venerabiles manus suas:
gratias agens, benedixit,
deditque discipulis suis,
Accipite, et bibite ex eo omnes.
Hic est enim Calix
novi et æterni testamenti:
vobis et pro multis effundetur
in remissionem peccatorum.
quotiescumque feceritis, in mei memoriam facietis.
Unde et memores,
nos servi tui, sed et plebs tua sancta,
eiusdem Christi Filii
tui Domini nostri
tam beatæ passionis,
nec non et ab inferis
sed et in cælos gloriosæ ascensionis:
de tuis donis, ac datis,
hostiam puram, hostiam sanctam,
Panem sanctum vitæ æternæ,
et Calicem salutis
Supra quæ propitio ac sereno vultu respicere digneris:
sicuti accepta habere dignatus es
munera pueri tui iusti
et sacrificium Patriarchæ nostri Abrahæ:
et quod tibi obtulit
summus sacerdos tuus Melchisedech,
sanctum sacrificium, immaculatam
Supplices te rogamus, omnipotens Deus:
iube hæc perferri per
manus sancti Angeli tui
in sublime altare tuum,
in conspectu dininæ
ut quotquot, ex hac altaris participatione
Filii tui, Corpus, et Sanguinem sumpserimus,
omni benedictione cælesti et
Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.
etiam, Domine, famulorum, famularumque tuarum N. et N.,
præcesserunt cum signo fidei,
et dormiunt in somno pacis.
et omnibus in Christo quiescentibus,
locum refrigerii, lucis et
ut indulgeas, deprecamur.
Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum.
Nobis quoque peccatoribus famulis tuis,
miserationum tuarum sperantibus,
partem aliquam, et societatem donare
cum tuis sanctis Apostolis et Martyribus:
Stephano, Matthia, Barnaba,
Ignatio, Alexandro, Marcellino,
Felicitate, Perpetua, Agatha, Lucia,
et omnibus Sanctis tuis:
intra quorum nos consortium,
sed veniæ, quæsumus, largitor admitte.
Per quem hæc omnia, Domine,
semper bona creas,
sanctificas, vivificas, benedicis,
et præstas nobis.
Per ipsum, et
cum ipso, et in ipso,
est tibi Deo Patri omnipotenti,
omnis honor, et gloria.
Per omnia sæcula
5. The motu proprio "Ecclesia Dei"The Roman Liturgy page states:
"Use of the current missal did not completely supplant use of the former,
because of concessions granted both by our holy father of blessed memory the
Servant of God Paul VI and by the current bishop of Rome John Paul II.
Pastoral concessions to older priests and very limited concessions to other
special groups had been granted in Paul's pontificate, but the greatest
concessions came in 1984 and 1988, granted by John Paul. The concession of
1988 (and mostly likely that of 1984 as well) was granted in order to
facilitate the ecclesial communion of certain groups, in other words to
attempt to remove any pretext for certain groups to leave the Catholic
communion." - title pageHowever, Ecclesia Dei informs us that:
"c) Moreover, respect must everywhere by shown for the feelings of all
those who are attached to the Latin liturgical tradition by a wide and
generous application of the directives already issued some time ago by the
Apostolic See for the use of the Roman Missal according to the typical edition
of 1962."Here, the Holy Father is referring to those "all those who are
attached to the Latin liturgical tradition", e.g. someone like myself, not
followers of Mgr. Lefebvre.
This interpretation seems to backed up by
Cardinal Mayer in a letter to all the Bishops of the United States:
" Consequently, addressing himself "to all those Catholic faithful who
feel attached to some previous liturgical and disciplinary forms of the Latin
tradition," and not just to the former adherents of Archbishop Lefebvre, he
expressed his will "to guarantee respect for their rightful aspirations (no.
5, c). In order to provide for these legitimate desires of the faithful he
established this Pontifical Commission and indicated his mind with regard to
its primary task, stating:Moreover, Cardinal
Stickler said at the Latin Mass Society's AGM, 20th June, 1992:
". . . respect must everywhere be shown for
the feelings of those who are attached to the Latin liturgical tradition, by a
wide and generous application of the directives already issued some time ago
by the Apostolic See for use of the Roman Missal according to the 1962 typical
edition (no. 6, c)."
Consequently, Your Excellency, we wish to
encourage you to facilitate the proper and reverent celebration of the
liturgical rites according to the Roman Miss of 1962 wherever there is a
genuine desire for this on the part of the priests and faithful. This should
not be construed as a promotion of that Missal in prejudice to the one
promulgated eight years later, but simply a pastoral provision to meet the
"rightful aspirations" of those who wish to worship according to the Latin
liturgical tradition as celebrated for centuries. "
"The first idea I will communicate with you is that you can be sure that
your movement has full legitimacy in the Church. Some have said that we are
not legitimate. This is not true because, if you remember article 4 of the
Liturgical Constitution, the Council Fathers explicitly said all the venerable
rites have to be preserved. Some people say this is valid for all the other
rites, with the exception of the Roman Latin rite. This is not so. Because
article 4 says: all the rites legitimately recognised. This was not only
established for the rites existing at that time, during the Council, but also
for the rites that should be approved afterwards. Now the Old Latin rite was
really recognised after the changing of the former Latin Roman rite because,
as you know, exception was given immediately for old priests and, in England,
you had fortunately your great Cardinal Heenan, who obtained the Indult for
England and Wales in 1971. Then, we had the Motu Proprio, the Indult of the
Pope, and later on Ecclesia Dei which was clearly confirmed by the Pope; for
example, when he spoke to the Abbot of Le Barroux in 1990, who had asked
explicitly for this rite. Consequently, a new authority was given to the old
Rite on the base of the liturgical Constitution of the Council itself. This
recognition is coming from the Holy See, from the Pope, under the conditions
given at the moment of the new approbation, which institutes a real
legitimation of the Old Rite (and is available now). So, if you fulfil the
conditions for the continuation of the Old Rite, it is legitimate for you.
This is the external legitimacy of your movement."
6. Pope Paul VIThe Roman Liturgy page states:
"The man who oversaw the greater part of the reform of the Roman liturgy
was our holy father of blessed memory, the Servant of God Paul VI, bishop of
Rome AD 1963 - 1978, perhaps the greatest in this century of great popes." -
title pageFor a start, there is only one canonised Pope this century, and
that is St. Pope Pius X, not Pope Paul VI. Secondly, Pope Paul VI reigned over
the Church in which, in his own words, turned from "self criticism to self-
destruction" and that the "smoke of Satan had entered the Church". He reigned
over the Church which went from a remarkable unity in faith and worship to
disintegration and vulgarisation of worship.
Also, Cardinal Heenan has
said of Pope Paul VI:
"The Pope may be badly advised and physically weak, but he contrives to
make his voice clearly heard and more often than not he displays a deep
anxiety. Constantly he returns to the theme of erroneous teaching of theology.
Unfortunately, his condemnations are made in general terms. Sine nobody knows
what theologians are being condemned it is impossible for bishops to take any
action." (The Tablet, 18 May, 1968, p. 488)The great Hamish Fraser, a
convert from communism and editor of "Approaches" for 19 years until his death
in 1984, said in the issue of Pope Paul's death (Sept. 1978, no. 62):
"It is however in no sense judging Pope Paul as a person to observe, now
that he has gone to his reward, as we had repeatedly observed while he was
still alive, that his pontificate was by far the most disasterous in history.
Nor is it in any sense 'uncharitable' to refuse to shut one's eyes and one's
mind in the presence of incontestable facts. On the contrary, to blind oneself
to the obvious truth would be a culpable act of wilful self-deception. And as
for the facts concerning Paul VI's pontificate, they are, alas! quite beyond
dispute."Hard words indeed, but all too true when we see the facts of the
destruction of the faith in the Church.
Back to Lex orandi, lex
Last modified 8th July, 1997, by David Joyce.