Before July 2007, I recall often praying and hoping for a day when my family could assist at a Mass in the old rite. Though I do not know Latin... I knew that there were missals which were supposed to make following along easy. Without getting bogged down in the reasons why I was praying for this... I will say that I had friends in other places who enjoyed this Mass in an ecclesiastically approved venue and that I felt that the normal parish fare was not really nourishing me or my family as we needed.
Our dear Holy Father has actually issued several documents regarding the old Mass and they are worth reading, for they help us get into his thoughts on the Liturgy... and most especially... they reveal His Holiness' motives for liberating the old Mass for our benefit.
Here are the documents below. Know as you read these, that it was not due to some sense of nostalgia that the Holy Father, now, at this point in history is drawing our attention to the Tridentine Rite (which he now calls the Extraordinary Form). It is precisely because this form of the Roman rite has been attracting young and old by the thousands... especially in Europe where the secularization of the culture is about ten years ahead of the secularization rate in the US.
- The Introduction letter to Summorum Pontificum written by His HolinessBenedict XVI accompanying Summorum Pontificum
- Summorum Pontificum (The actual document which states that bishops must permit any stable group to enjoy this Mass, herein after we shall call this S.P.)
- A letter from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith which reiterates certain important points about the motu proprio S.P. This is called "INSTRUCTION ON THE APPLICATION OF THE APOSTOLIC LETTER S.P."
I will be blogging about the following subjects: Basic order of the Mass, Why the little red books are good but a Missal is better, What it means to participate at the old Mass, do's and dont's for priests if they wish to encourage the man in the pew to come back next week, What to do when you find you are continually loosing your place, the basic order of the Mass and how to use your Missal, Comparing two different Missals in common use, Digesting a prayer in Latin and in English, Preparing for Mass days in advance, Sacred Music, On Line Resources, How to deal with nasty people who may be at Mass, (EF and OF) and a summary.
Never be intimidated by the seeming complexity of the old Mass. God has you there for a reason