28 August 2009

Philippine 'Diocese brings back Latin Mass'

Christmas Day 2007. Correction: This Mass was celebrated in Lord of Divine Mercy Parish, Diocese of Cubao, not in Jesus, Lord of Divine Mercy Parish, Diocese of Novaliches as I posted originally. (H/T Pro Deo et Patria for photos and correction).

CBCP News, run by the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines, carries a story today about the Traditional Latin Mass, no properly called the Extraordinary Form (EF) of the Mass, being celebrated regularly in the Diocese of Parañaque, which consists of three cities in the Metro Manila area and was carved out of the Archdiocese in 2002.

When Pope Benedict's motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum, came out in 2007 there wasn't much discussion about it in the Philippines, although some celebrations were reported in the media. The Society of St Pius X has houses in at least two places, Quezon City, Metro Manila, and Iloilo City. On Monday of last week when I went to Iloilo for an ordination I met two SSPX priests as I was getting on the boat for Iloilo, a Frenchman and a Filipino. They were wearing white soutanes with a blue sash. I only exchanged greetings with them.

The CBCP News headline speaks of bringing back the 'Latin Mass'. Quite a few people, even priests older than me - I was ordained in 1967 - refer to what is now called Mass in the Extraordinary Form, or 'TLM' (Tridentine Latin Mass), as many call it. They are unaware that Latin is still the official liturgical language of the Roman Rite. However, hardly anyone I know here has ever been at a Mass of any kind in Latin since the radical changes were introduced. I have celebrated Mass - Novus Ordo - publicly in Latin only twice, in 1981 in a Carmelite Monastery in Iceland, where the nuns were all Dutch, most of them elderly (they've been replaced since by Polish Carmelites), and in a retirement home for Daughters of Charity near Munich in 1988. On the rare occasions when I celebrate Mass alone I sometimes do so in Latin.

In 1990 I attended a TLM, approved by the archbishop, in the church in Dublin where my parents were married. Many in the congregation were young and I was struck by the prayerfulness of those there. For me it was like being at a reconstruction of something from the past in a museum.

However, I wouldn't see it that way now, even though I haven't been at a TLM since. But I hope that the ocasion will arise when I will be able to celebrate an Mass in the Extraordinary Form. When I was ordained we had an 'interim' form, basically the TLM with some vernacular, especially the readings. The Roman Canon could be said aloud but Archbishop John Charles McQuaid of Dublin, where I'm from, decreed that it was to be said quietly, 'for the sake of uniformity', as I recall.

In the larger cities in the Philippines and in most religious houses and Catholic schools English rather than the mother-tongue has replaced Latin. This troubles me at times but it's a complicated issue.

Pro Deo et Patria gives a directory of the TLM in the Philippines, which shows that it is celebrated in a growing number of cities. But I have rarely heard anyone speak about it. One friend of mine in Mindanao was quite upset when some Greek and Latin chants were introduced at one Sunday Mass in his cathedral.

Diocese brings back Latin Mass

MANILA, August 27, 2009—The use of Latin Mass is actively being done in the Diocese of Paranaque with a go signal given by its bishop.

The Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) celebrations in southern Metro Manila are currently hosted by the National Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus in Villamor Air Base.
The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass continues to be a Missa Cantata, celebrated at 9:30AM every Sunday at the crypt chapel of the Columbarium.

The Traditional Latin Mass Ministry of the Diocese of Parañaque which celebrates the TLM has adopted the name Societas Liturgiae Sacrae Sancti Gregorii.

The Ministry is composed of the priest-celebrants trained at St. Jerome Emiliani and Sta. Susana Parish (SJESSP), the TLM altar servers of SJESSP, and the Van De Steen Choir.

The Societas LSSG continues to be supported by SJESSP parishioner benefactor, George Balagtas, and its activities coordinated by Marilou Cortes.

Societas LSSG continues to undertake its TLM activities under the directives set by Paranaque Bishop Jesse Mercado and guidelines approved by Fr Grato Germanetto, CRS.
The first celebration of the traditional Mass in the diocese was held on June 29, 2008 on the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, at the Church of St. Jerome Emiliani and Sta. Susana Parish in Muntinlupa City.

It will be recalled that in July 2007, Pope Benedict XVI issued Motu Proprio an Apostolic Letter entitled “Summorum Pontificum” regarding the celebration of the Roman Rite according to the Missal of 1962 and gave guidelines on how to proceed with the so-called Latin Mass. (CBCPNews)

1 comment:

Khass said...

Thank You so much for this blog. I am from the Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro and I never knew that latin mass is celebrated. I personally want to attend such mass to experience the historic feeling of what it is to attend mass in latin.