Tag: Form

Masterly Confusion

Masterly Confusion posted in Eleison Comments on November 15, 2008

Ever since Vatican II (1962–1965), a number of intelligent and serious Catholic souls have striven to prove that the changes made to the Latin Church’s sacramental rites by Pope Paul VI in particular render these rites automatically invalid. One might reply, if only it were that simple! But simplicity is no substitute for truth.

Here is how one such soul seeks to prove that the new rite of priestly Ordination is automatically invalid, and his argument is not without value:

Major: Wherever the words of a sacramental Form, essential to the validity of the sacrament, are significantly changed, or wherever the same words are being given in context a significantly different meaning, the Form, and with it the sacrament, can only be invalid.

Minor: Now the words themselves of the new Form of priestly Ordination have not been significantly changed, but in the context of the new rite taken as a whole, the same word of “priest” is being given a significantly different meaning, in accordance with the Council’s total revolutionizing of the Catholic priesthood.

Conclusion: Therefore never can a priest be validly ordained with the new rite.

In this argument, there is no problem with the Major, which is Catholic doctrine. As for the Minor, it is true that the words of the Form have remained essentially intact. It is also true that the whole drift of Vatican II and the post-Conciliar reforms is towards an emptying out of the Catholic priesthood, as of the whole Catholic religion, to replace it with a religion of man. But the argument above, to arrive at its conclusion, would have to prove that Conciliar documents and reforms in themselves positively exclude the Catholic priesthood and religion, because so long as the new rite can be taken not to exclude the true priesthood, it can still be used validly to ordain a true priest.

Alas (for purposes of clarity), the will of Paul VI as seen in all his reforms (and now of Benedict XVI) is so to introduce the new religion of man alongside the Catholic religion of God as to include and not exclude the latter! Now any sane mind cannot stand the idea of 2 and 2 being 5 in such a way as not to exclude their being 4. But Conciliar minds are not sane. They want to apostatize while still remaining Catholic! Thus the new rite of Ordination may omit many features of the Catholic ordination, but it introduces nothing that positively excludes a true ordination. If only it did! Then it could no longer deceive so many souls into thinking that it presents no problem for Catholics. Here is the problem: the drift of the text is to invalidate the true priesthood (2+2=5), but the text may still be used validly (2+2=4)! Sister Lucy of Fatima called it “Diabolical disorientation.”

Kyrie eleison.

Weak Tea?

Weak Tea? posted in Eleison Comments on September 6, 2008

To a layman asking whether one should – or could – attend today the (Tridentine) Mass of a priest ordained in 1972 with the 1968 new rite of Ordination, an SSPX priest answered that the SSPX “would not recommend it.” The layman found this answer “too weak to be definitive.” His hope for stronger answers is surely shared by many souls suffering from today’s all-round confusion.

However, clear answers are not always possible. Where an object is grey, one cannot say it is black or white. At the point of dawn, one cannot say it is night or day, because it is in between. Where the truth is confusing, it is more important to try to be true than to try to be clear. Alas, with Novus Ordo ordinations as with Novus Ordo Masses, no doubt they are more and more often invalid as the pre-Conciliar Church’s ways drop more and more into the past, but even today one cannot truthfully say that all Novus Ordo sacraments are automatically invalid.

A sacrament to be valid requires valid Minister, Form, Matter, and Intention. In 1972 it is reasonable to assume (one can always check) that the ordaining Minister (bishop) and his sacramental Intention were still Catholic. The Form of the 1968 rite of priestly Ordination includes (even in English) all the elements necessary for validity. And one can assume that the Bishop laid both hands on the future priest’s head, which means there was the Matter. For a 2002 Novus Ordo ordination the need to check elements necessary for validity is definitely more pressing, but for a 1972 ordination, surely the SSPX priest’s abstaining in his answer from a clear condemnation was reasonable.

Nevertheless he said the SSPX “would not recommend” attendance at such a priest’s (Tridentine) Mass, and surely that is also reasonable. Besides the remote off- chance (in 1972) that the ordination was invalid, the Mass in question may be set in a whole Novus Ordo context liable eventually to undermine the Catholic Faith of those attending.

However, unless a priest knows personally such a celebrant and his manner of celebrating the Tridentine Mass, he must leave to Catholics who do know him to judge whether his way of celebrating is of a nature to nourish or to undermine the Faith of Catholics. Certainly not all Novus Ordo priests today picking up the Tridentine Mass mean to bring souls round to Vatican II. On the contrary.

Almighty God, we beg of You, restore order in Your Church!

Kyrie eleison.