May 13, 2011. (Romereports.com)
In 2007 Benedict XVI permitted the return of celebrating Mass according to the liturgy before Vatican II, without receiving special permission. For three years, bishops around the world reported to the Vatican the problems they faced in its implementation. The Vatican has now released their published answers to these problems.
The document is the Instruction “Universae Ecclesiae.” It is signed by Cardinal William Levada. It says that those who participate in this liturgy may not oppose the celebration done in it's usual manner and should recognize the pope as supreme pastor of the universal Church.Fr. Federico Lombardi
Vatican spokesman“Those who called for this extraordinary form can not argue. It's quoted at number 19, 'must not in any way support or belong to groups that show themselves to be against the validity or legitimacy of the Holy Mass or the Sacraments celebrated in the forma ordinaria or against the authority of the Pope as Supreme Pastor of the universal Church'. So if a group asks for this because it believes that other rite of the Mass is not valid, it's not allowed.”
The document confirms that this liturgy can be celebrated whenever a sufficiently large number of people ask for it so that the regular schedule of the parish is not interrupted. Those who make the request can be from different parishes and dioceses.
The instruction details the special requirements for priests. They should know Latin, at least for understanding the meaning of the prayers and be able to read Latin text. Fr. Federico Lombardi
“It's difficult to find priests who know this liturgy. That know all the particular gestures, because it's difficult and if you haven't practiced in a while, it's difficult to learn. You have to be very familiar with Latin and know how they celebrate.”
The pope has urged bishops to take the "necessary measures" for the proper implementation of this “extraordinary form” of Mass. And he asked that seminarians begin to learn concretely. Fr. Federico Lombardi
“You see the difficulty that bishops have in finding suitable priests, because this in general is not found with many priests, and much less for this type of celebration. So we are asked to teach Latin in seminaries. Because that's something important, it's from the general culture.”
The Tridentine Mass is entirely in Latin, the priest celebrates it in a low voice with his back to the faithful. The readings are also different, they include fewer texts from the Old Testament and only follow the Roman Canon, while the current missal has four prefaces that the priest can freely choose.