The 2nd Vatican Ecumenical Council was a completely valid and necessary council that was called to correct certain abuses and provide a pastoral direction to the Church at that time. I’m of the opinion that the 2nd Vatican Council has not been applied at all, and here’s how I’ve gotten to that conclusion.
Reading Sacosanctorum Concilium, or the Document on the Sacred Liturgy and seeing Mass how it’s presently offered, I don’t see much of what the 2nd Vatican Council called for and here’s why…
1. Do the people know the parts of the Mass in the vernacular AND Latin? No, many do not, many only have heard Mass in the vernacular, without any Latin whatsoever.
2. Does Gregorian Chant have pride of place in the Liturgy? No, Hymns have replaced the propers (Introit, Gradual, Offertory, and Communion verse). Marty Haugen rules the day at most Catholic Parishes
3, Do Catholics better understand the Liturgy? (SC 21) Hardly
4. Do priests ab lib the Mass? Absolutely (SC 22)
The Church is not dead stuck in 1962, and Traditionalists need to understand this through their heads. The Church is allowed to organically develop without changing the substance of what’s been taught. I don’t advocate “reform of the reform” but just “reform” because the “reforms” were never put into place fully in the first place. What we see is “full scale destruction” Of the Catholic Faith. To advocate this position, we need to explain a few things…
1. The NO Missal was not promulgated until 1969, a full 4 years after the council. So thus the reforms in SC only apply to the TRADITIONAL Mass, and not to the Novus Ordo Missal.(Though obviously they can be applied to the new Missal as well)
2. We can only consider the letter of the law, and not “spirit” of the law
Thus what I advocate is as follows:
1. A clear pronunciation of the Latin texts, no mumbling, hurrying or rushing of the Latin texts. There were priests that were rushing through the texts of the Mass, while certainly not everyone did so, they didn’t want this abuse to catch on. NO ONE has the authority to change the texts. NO ONE (SC 1.3, 22, 3)
2. Sacred Scripture is where many of the texts, for Holy Mass derive. The centrality of this is very important. Hence for Holy Mass, the propers should stick to Scripture…(The Introit, Gradual, Tract, Alleluia, Offertory, Communion Verse) (SC 1.3, 23)
3. “Private Liturgies” are to be avoided whenever possible. (SC 1.3 26) **Though technically there’s no such thing as private Mass since the choirs of angels, and death does not separate us as Catholics.
4. Liturgy is not supposed to be a spectator show, where people just pray Rosaries and private devotions. People are to be actually participating in Liturgy in various ways. True Liturgy involves multiple parts forming the one act of Adoration unto God. (SC 1.3, 26)
5. The means of actual participation….
a. Provided the Faithful can hear the Prayers at the foot of the altar, they’re welcome to participate in these prayers.
b. The Faithful are encouraged to sing the Chants of the Mass, (Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Agnus Dei, Domine non sum dignus) as well as the greetings (Et cum Spiritu tuo)
c. Traditional Psalmalody may be applied to the Introit, Graudal, Alleluia, Tract, Offertory and Communion verse). That is to say the schola chants part and the faithful reply with the other half of this. (SC 1.3 27 and 30)
6. Those that are assisting at the altar are to know their parts and execute them flawlessly and in conformity to whatever rite of the Mass, that is so being offered. Whether in minor or major orders. (SC 1.3, 28, 29)
7. Choirs, scholas are assist in the Liturgy and should do so with decorum appropriate for Holy Liturgy (SC 1.3, 29)
8. The Peoples’ rubrics need to be clearly laid out (SC 1.3, 31)
9. There are to be no special exemptions made for people by external display other than Liturgical distinctions (SC 1.3, 32)
10. The Holy Liturgy is to catechize the Faithful, even though the primary function of the Holy Liturgy is for the Adoration of God. (SC 1.3, 33)
11. Visible signs are to reflect the invisible (SC 1.3, 33)
12. Noble simplicity, that is things are to be consise and not repetitive. **Note, Noble simplicity does not mean the Iconoclasm of serveral parishes, NOR does it mean the elimination of the various genuflections. (As the 3 Genuflections aren’t useless, they’re helpful in reminding the priest of the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist or in the Tabernacle) (SC 1.3, 34)
13. Sacred Scripture should not repeat, that is to say there should not be Sundays where you hear the same Scipture readings in a row, or weekdays. One of the problems in the old Missal, is what would happen when you’d “run out” of Sundays in Pentecost, or Epiphany. The expansion in Scipture readings was meant to COVER these unforeseen circumstances.(SC 1.3, 35.1)
14. The sermon is supposed to be a part of the Liturgical action. Sermons should draw from Scipture, Liturgical or Magisterial sources. (SC 1.3 35, 2)
15. People are to be TAUGHT the Liturgy. People are to be taught true Liturgy, that is to say, people need to be catechized on the Mass (SC 1.3, 35, 3)
16. In the case of Mission lands, where there aren’t as many priests available, Services should be encouraged. Also, that said, More study of Sacred Scripture is to be encouraged (SC 1.3, 35, 4)
17. Latin is to be retained in the Holy Liturgy. The Sacraments may be administered in the Vernacular. For the Holy Mass, parts in the Vernacular include the Introit, the Gradual, the Alleluia, Tract, Communion Verse, Offertory) (SC 1.3, 36 1-2)
18. Respect for traditions of cultures is to be preserved, that is to ay there shouldn’t be a Latinization on the Eastern liturgies, Proper inculturalization is allowed in the Holy Mass (SC 1.3 37)
19. The Liturgy of the Bishop is to be the model for all Liturgies (SC 1.3 E 41)
2o. A sense of community is to be developed in the Mass, that is to say, people should not be isolated amongst groups, but united together praying the Holy Mass.(SC E 42)
Obviously the way that it was being celebrated had problems, so the Council Fathers tried to fix this (unfortunately it’s been a disaster in implementation). There were too many low Masses being offered and not enough High Masses that were being offered. This was a problem that wasn’t fixed unfortunately. The Sunday Low Mass is not in the minds of the Roman Church. Sunday is a day of full solemnity, and if a Solemn High Mass can’t be celebrated, a Missa Cantata should be celebrated for all of the Masses.
Vatican II was not from the devil and people need to realize that Vatican II is NOT to blame for every single problem the Church has, get over it, actually read the documents, especially the one’s on the Sacred Liturgy, and come to the Hermeneutic of Continuity)