Sunday, October 21, 2007

Bishop of Leeds on the Motu Proprio

See Fr Zuhlsdorf for a critical examination of Bishop Roche's rather heavy handed micro-managed rules and regulations for the implementation of Summorum Pontificum.

It is important for those who are not into celebrating or attending the TLM, just to see how a particular bishop interprets a Papal document. It seems very much in keeping with the rather depressed English attitude that stifles mission and so much that is good.

As one of the more significant Westminster contenders and as chairman of ICEL, this statement shows how one of our bishops deals with documents from the Holy Father. To me it seems that this is another example of Cardinal Hume's, "this document does not apply to the Church in England and Wales".

Most of our Bishops have said very little about the document, and have left its interpretation up to individual priests, but Bishop Roche here seems to want to define terms that the text doesn't define, such as quite what a "private Mass" is, what idoneus means, what a coetus is, what stabiliter means. He also seems to want to "refine" what the Holy Father's very intention is in promulgating this document.

What I find most concerning is that he seems to want to take to himself the right of decision making that the Holy Father has very clearly given to individual priests. He has also introduced, that which even some of the odder American bishops have not done, the restriction of forbidding bination, celebrating two Masses in one day without the bishops permission.

On the whole this is a lack lustre document, that contrasts disappointingly with magnanimity of the Pope's own words, I hope that it is not the beginning of a trickle of similar statements by our English and Welsh bishops, especially as it seems highly likely that some retractions might have to be made when the Ecclesia Dei Commission themselves issue some clarifications, which is expected soon.


Anagnostis said...

Once more I'm at a loss to understand what the authors of documents like this hope to accomplish by them. Do they think we're incapable of understanding the Pope's own stated intentions, or that we have no access to authentic interpretations of the terms of the MP? That we're ignorant of the background?

For most of my adult life I've been reliant on the SSPX. I long for that "inner reconciliation at the heart of the Church" of which the Holy Father speaks so movingly; but if, as Bishop Roche proposes, a desire to reconcile the SSPX is the sole intention of SP, then the tone and content of this message have already subverted it.

Anonymous said...

"Depressed" that's the word. Oh, for one upbeat bishop in E&W!

Phil said...


Nil desperandum, + Peter Northantoniensis seems to be bucking the trend! But, by and large, this from one who is considered a front-runner for Westminster? Please!

When Pope Paul said, "From some fissure the smoke of Satan entered into the temple of God.", I wonder whether he was looking, prophetically, at the future Bishops' Conference of England and Wales?

Anonymous said...

Delivered in the Netherlands by His Excellency Most Reverend Malcolm Ranjith, Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments.

“The motu proprio Summorum Pontificum on the Latin Liturgy of July 7th 2007 is the fruit of a deep reflection by our Pope on the mission of the Church. It is not up to us, who wear ecclesiastical purple and red, to draw this into question, to be disobedient and make the motu proprio void by our own little, tittle rules. Even not if they were made by a bishops conference. Even bishops do not have this right.
What the Holy Fathers says, has to be obeyed in the Church. If we do
not follow this principle, we will allow ourselves to be used as instruments of the devil, and nobody else. This will lead to discord in the Church, and slows down her mission. We do not have the time to waste on this. Else we behave like emperor Nero, fiddling on his violin while Rome was burning. The churches are emptying, there are no vocations, the seminaries are empty. Priests become older and older, and young priests are scarce.”

Well we can see where the Bishop of Leeds is standing. He needs to stand with Peter or stand aside.

Anonymous said...

How frightening that the chair of ICEL seems to have so little grasp of Latin.
Depressed and depressing, that is is the trouble with our Bishops they have no sense of hope, no vision of the future.

Anonymous said...

Is anyone collecting these idiosyncratic interpretations of the document from English and American bishops to send to Rome?

Dr. Peter H. Wright said...

"Let us generously open our hearts and make room for everything the faith itself allows."

Pope Benedict XVI
7th July 2007

How could anyone hearing or reading those words from the Holy Father fail to respond with generosity and love ?

WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

I don't really get it. What is it that makes a bishop SO afraid of something like the MP?

Anonymous said...

All he is trying to do is help to implemement the wishes of the Holy Father and not some crackpot group of bloggers on their own agenda.

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