Thursday, December 4, 2003

New Apostolic Letter on the Liturgy

There is a new on that I'm having a hard time finding online. But from other sources here is a snipet:

Pope John Paul said a lack of respect for the norms sometimes has led to "serious abuses" which cast a shadow over the mystery being celebrated and which cause concern and tensions among Catholics.

"Such abuses have nothing to do with the authentic spirit of the (Second Vatican) Council and must be corrected by pastors with an attitude of prudent firmness," he said, without specifying any particular abuse.

The pope said it is "more necessary than ever to increase the liturgical life within our communities," by educating Catholics about the meaning of the Mass and its various moments and their role as participants.

My How-To Book of the Mass would provide any religious educator out there with a great way to educate their parish communities.

This one was written in 1988, and giving how well it was followed there probably isn't much hope for the new one either. From the Apostolic Letter Vicesimus Quintus Annus on the twenty-fifth anniversary (today is the fourtieth anniversary.

Here is the link and a snipet, from

Apostolic Letter Vicesimus Quintus Annus:

"It cannot be tolerated that certain priests should take upon themselves the right to compose Eucharistic Prayers or to substitute profane readings for texts from Sacred Scripture. Initiatives of this sort, far from being linked with the liturgical reform as such, or with the books which have issued from it, are in direct contradiction to it, disfigure it and deprive the Christian people of the genuine treasures of the Liturgy of the Church.

It is for the bishops to root out such abuses, because the regulation of the Liturgy depends on the bishop within the limits of the law (61) and because “the life in Christ of his faithful people in some sense is derived from and depends on him”. (62)"

Further update: The new Apostolic Letter was circulated in Italian among participants at a conference held in Rome today commemorating the fortieth Anniversary of Document on the Sacred Liturgy. My guess it will be out in English in the next week or so.

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