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Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism #413074
09/19/15 01:37 AM
09/19/15 01:37 AM
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Tomassus Offline OP
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Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism

Notes on Piero Marini's new appointment, the legacy of the 2010 Synod of Bishops, and the modernizing Chaldean Catholic liturgical reform of 2014

Posted by Augustinus at 9/19/2015
http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2015/09/infusing-spirit-of-novus-ordo-into.html

[Linked Image]
Patriarch Louis Raphael celebrating Mass at the Chaldean church of the Queen of the Holy Rosary in Baghdad, 2014.
***

On Piero Marini and the "Special Commission on the Liturgy" for the Eastern Catholics

September 1 saw, in addition to the Pope's letter on the Jubilee of Mercy with its historic gestures to the SSPX and on abortion, the announcement that he had also renewed the membership of the Special Commission on the Liturgy of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches. (Some news sites reported this as a "reconstitution" of the Commission.) As President of this Special Commission he appointed Archbishop Piero Marini who will also remain as President of the Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses (a post he has held since 2007). Marini is of course better known as the former Master of Pontifical Liturgical Celebrations and disciple of Abp. Annibale Bugnini, having been at one point the latter's personal secretary.

Marini is already 73 (turning 74 next January) and will doubtless not last very long in his positions, even if his stay is extended into his late 70's. Despite the name of the Commission it is not a "mini-Congregation for Divine Worship" for the Eastern Catholic Churches, whose Synods and Primates have more autonomy when it comes to liturgical and disciplinary matters than the bishops and Bishops' Conferences of the Latin Rite. Its role according to the Vatican website is "to deal with the matters reserved by the Code of Canons for the Oriental Churches to the Holy See concerning the liturgy of the oriental Catholic Churches". According to the Code of Canons for the Oriental Churches (Canon 657) these largely pertain to the review and / or approval of liturgical texts (including translations for liturgical use) before these could come into force in the Eastern Catholic Churches, including those led by Patriarchs. Due to the Special Commission's limited powers it is highly improbable that Abp. Marini will be able to push through a major liturgical reform among the Eastern Churches. However, the Special Commission can influence liturgical texts -- and it is to this aspect that we now turn.

The Legacy of the Synod of Bishops of 2010

The overall reform of the rites and ceremonies Eastern Churches is one thing; the possible "modernization" of some texts of the Eastern Rites is another. Should the powers-that-be wish for such modernizations they can point to the express will of the Synod of Bishops in 2010 (on the Church in the Middle East), and even to the Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Benedict XVI "Ecclesia in Medio Oriente". Long-time readers of Rorate might recall that back in 2010 this blog posted an article on the desire for liturgical modernization expressed by some Eastern Catholic bishops themselves and included in the final Propositions of that Synod:

Liturgical Reform: Coming Soon to the Eastern Churches?[ See comment below]

The 2010 Synod's 39th Proposition called for the adaptation of the Eastern Rites to contemporary thought and language:

Quote
The biblical and theological wealth of the Eastern liturgies is at the spiritual service of the universal Church. Nonetheless, it would be useful and important to renew the liturgical texts and celebrations, where necessary, so as to answer better the needs and expectations of the faithful. This renewal must be based on an ever deeper knowledge of tradition and be adapted to contemporary language and categories.


In September 2012 (only three years ago) Pope Benedict XVI issued his Apostolic Exhortation based upon the discussions of the Synod of 2010, Ecclesia in Medio Oriente. This document (in no. 75) echoes the Synod of 2010's Proposition 39 by calling for a "renewal of liturgical texts and celebrations" among Eastern Catholics that would be partly based on "the new insights of Christian theology and anthropology" even as it asks that the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox be consulted on any project of liturgical renewal:

Quote
A renewal of liturgical texts and celebrations, where necessary, could enable the faithful to draw more deeply from the liturgical tradition and its biblical, patristic, theological and spiritual riches[74] through their experience of the Mystery to which these give access. Such a renewal must of course be undertaken, to the extent possible, in cooperation with those Churches which are not in full communion, yet are also heirs to the same liturgical traditions. The desired liturgical renewal must be based on the word of God, on the proper tradition of each Church, and upon the new insights of Christian theology and anthropology. It will bear fruit if Christians become convinced that the sacramental life introduces them deeply into the new life in Christ (cf. Rom 6:1-6; 2 Cor 5:17) which is the source of communion and witness.


When Ecclesia in Medio Oriente was published this portion of the text scarcely produced any reactions. Benedict XVI's text was much more restrained compared to the original Propositions of the Synod Fathers in 2010 let alone what they actually said during the Synodal discussions. As already noted the desire to reform the Eastern Catholic liturgies is strongest among Eastern Catholics themselves. We can see this not just in the output of the 2010 Synod but in recent events in the Chaldean Catholic Church.


Chaldean Catholic Liturgical Reform - 2014





[Linked Image]
Traditional-style Chaldean Catholic liturgy and sanctuary


There was a major overhaul of the Chaldean Missal approved by Chaldean hierarchy and the Holy See in 2006. This reform made the text of the Mass "clearer and more compact" (in other words, shorter and with fewer repetitions) while going to great lengths to preserve many of its ancient textual and theological treasures. However, the reform -- despite being promulgated by the late Chaldean Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly and approved by the Holy See for implementation in 2007 initially for a 3-year period ad experimentum -- was not widely adopted, except in the St. Peter Eparchy centered in El Cajon, CA. It was this diocese's bishop (Mar Sarhad Jammo) who had spearheaded the 2006 reform. This diocese also adopted the celebration of the Anaphora (Eucharistic Prayer) "ad orientem" and the revival of the Sanctuary Veil. The story of the liturgical chaos in the Chaldean Church and the failed reform, the widespread abbreviation and "novusordoization" of the liturgy, the general adoption of "ad populum" etc. are told (from a pro-2006 reform POV) in the articles Personal Reflections on the 2006 Reform of the Chaldean Mass (which has important documents at the end) and Liturgical Debates in the Chaldean Church.


One of the most ardent supporters of modernizing liturgical reform for the Eastern Churches in general during the Synod of 2010 was the Chaldean Archbishop Louis Sako, who would go on to be elected in 2013 as Patriarch Louis Raphael of his Church. Upon his enthronement he outlined liturgical reform as one of his priorities, stating that "We need to update our liturgy so that it speaks to man today, so that it gives meaning and much hope." This despite the fact that there was already a reform in 2006. During the Synod he had asked for "Liturgical reformation based upon sacred scripture, but also the patristics and pastoral demands of today. Otherwise our faithful will go looking for other churches as has already happened in some cases." Tellingly, one of his first actions was to disparage and abandon the clerical headgear native to his Church (the "shash").

Amidst the chaos and suffering that had overtaken the Chaldeans in Iraq and Syria at the hands of Islamists in 2014, a second reform of the Chaldean Mass -- "Mass" is how the Chaldeans themselves now call it in English -- was accomplished with surprising speed. The reformed Mass was published by Patriarch Louis Raphael in 2014 with the approval of Leonardo Cardinal Sandri of the Congregation of the Eastern Catholic Churches. The 2014 reform is the second to be approved in eight years and is now being adopted by the rest of the Chaldean Church, except the St. Peter Eparchy that is sticking to the 2006 reform and has appealed to the Holy See to clarify the matter.

Alarmed Chaldean Catholic clerics of this eparchy have written critiques of the newest reform -- examples are The 2006 Reform of the Chaldean Mass and the 2014 Missal of Patriarch Sako. The Growing Child or the Mutilated Infant? by Fr. Andrew Younan and Keeping the Liturgy Chaldean by Fr. Ankidu Sipo.

In addition to various and apparently substantial changes to the prayers and ceremonies of the Mass, Fr. Younan claims that the new Missal has the following modernizations:


- The (implied, as well as applied) non-Eastern orientation of the Mass. The priest is expected to “face the people,” going against Eastern theology, liturgy, history, and the Prescriptions of the Catholic Church applying to Eastern Churches;

– the complete lack of reference to the Sanctuary Veil, despite all its beautiful, Scriptural meaning;

Both Younan and Sipo mention that Patriarch Louis Raphael's reform abolishes the use of the Crucifix and insists on a plain Cross in its place, a "reform" based on antiquarian grounds even though some of the other reforms are decidedly modern in orientation.

The bloggers of Rorate are well aware that there is a long-standing feud between this Diocese and the Patriarch that has cast a shadow over into this current liturgical dispute. There are some defenses of Patriarch Louis Raphael's liturgical reforms (such as this) that contradict some of the details in Younan's critique of the text of the reformed liturgy. However, Younan's claims that the new Missal effectively turns "ad populum" into a norm and that it ignores the existence of the Sanctuary Veil, are very serious, and given their publication on an official Chaldean Church venue and the absence (so far) of any denials or rebuttals, are to be taken seriously. (There are also many videos on Youtube that clearly show the Chaldean Mass with the Anaphora being celebrated ad populum in sanctuaries devoid of veils including this one by the Patriarch last year. But see our last paragraph, below.)

It might be rationalized that these reforms are of a temporary nature and affect only the areas where Chaldeans are persecuted. Unfortunately this is not true: it is apparent from the critiques cited above that the reform touches the very ideal of the Chaldean liturgy itself, and not only when celebrated under emergency or catacomb conditions in persecuted areas.

With the notable exception of the Syro-Malankars, the Eastern Catholic Churches of the Syriac tradition (Maronites, Chaldeans, Syriac Catholics, Syro-Malabars) have been undergoing a creeping "novusordoism" that has seen the widespread adoption of ad populum (easily verified on the Internet), the abandonment of the sanctuary curtain or veil common to the Syriac and Armenian traditions, and a tendency to abbreviate and modernize the liturgy. In an article written by a Chaldean in defense of the celebration of Mass ad orientem (Facing the Cross), the author laments that the celebration of Mass ad populum has spread to nearly all Chaldean Catholic dioceses, but he also points out that this is in contravention of Chaldean liturgical law and tradition. Unfortunately, with the latest liturgical reform by their own Patriarch, ad populum and the loss of the Sanctuary veil have now been transformed from being merely widespread abuses to "normalized" practices for the Chaldeans. We have seen similar maneuvers used repeatedly in the Latin Rite and we have no illusions about the further damage this will eventually inflict upon the spirit of an already devastated people.

Last edited by Tomassus; 09/19/15 12:30 PM.
Re: Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism [Re: Tomassus] #413075
09/19/15 06:16 AM
09/19/15 06:16 AM
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Brooklyn, NY USA
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I understand that there is virtual intercommunion between the Assyrian Church of the East and the Chaldean Catholic Church. I wonder how this plays out with most of the Chaldeans using a denatured liturgy!

Re: Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism [Re: Economos Roman V. Russo] #413076
09/19/15 12:24 PM
09/19/15 12:24 PM
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Tomassus Offline OP
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Liturgical Reform: Coming Soon to the Eastern Churches?

Posted by CA at 10/13/2010
http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2010/10/liturgical-reform-coming-soon-to.html

During the first General Congregation of the Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops on October 11, 2010, the Reporter of the Synod, His Beatitude Antonios Naguib, Patriarch of the Coptic Catholic Church, gave a lengthy report before the discussions began. (See this.) In the course of his lengthy report, which touches upon numerous matters of great importance for the dwindling flock of Christians in the Middle East, the Patriarch said the following about liturgical reform:


Quote
Liturgy «is the summit towards which the activity of the Church is directed; at the same time it is the font from which all her power flows.» In our Eastern Churches, the Divine Liturgy is at the centre of religious life. It plays an important role in maintaining Christian identity, strengthening a sense of belonging to the Church and animating a life of faith. The celebration of the Divine Liturgy is also a source of attraction to those who may be far from the faith or even disbelievers. Consequently, the Liturgy is an important part of the proclamation and witness of a Church which not only prays, but acts.


A great many people are deeply desiring liturgical renewal, which, while remaining faithful to tradition, would take into account modern sensitivities as well as today’s spiritual and pastoral needs. The work of liturgical reform would require a commission of experts. Perhaps some usefulness might result from adapting liturgical texts to celebrations with children and youth, while remaining faithful to each Church’s heritage. This could be the work of an interdisciplinary group of experts. Some look for liturgical renewal in the area of devotional practices. Whatever the case, adaptation and reform must consider the ecumenical aspect. The particularly delicate question of communicatio in sacris requires special study.









This openness to liturgical reform was immediately taken up in the next morning by Chaldean Archbishop Louis Sako, who only last year expressed the hope that this Synod will be a "new Pentecost" for the Eastern Churches, and called for "serious liturgical reform" among the Eastern Churches in order to stem the flow of Eastern Christians to the "sects". Archbishop Sako called for:



Quote
Liturgical reformation based upon sacred scripture, but also the patristics and pastoral demands of today. Otherwise our faithful will go looking for other churches as has already happened in some cases.





On a different vein, Coptic Catholic bishop Kyrillos William delivered the following, unusual intervention about the negative impact of the Novus Ordo in Arabic upon the Coptic Catholic Church:






Quote
The liturgy, according to the Instrumentum Laboris, is a deeply rooted feature of Eastern culture, thus one cannot lessen its strength in order to preserve the intensity of the faith today. History asserts that in our Middle Eastern countries, the liturgy has always been a school for education in the faith and Christian morality, especially when one considers our population, simple and for the most part illiterate, thanks to numerous biblical readings (six daily readings in our Coptic liturgy, even more on feast days and on certain celebrations) and to prayers composed of juxtaposed biblical quotations.

For this reason we must maintain it with reverence according to the text of Eastern canons law (cfr canon 39 of CCEO).

In the Constitution, Sacrosanctum Concilium, paragraph four, Vatican II affirms the equality of all rites with regard to rights and dignity. In the conciliar decree Orientalium Ecclesiarum, the Council fathers affirm a special regard for the patrimony of Eastern churches, and emphasize their kind deeds towards the Universal Church, quoting Leo XIII’s apostolic letter of November 30, 1894, “Orientalium Ecclesiarum”.

The Conciliar Decree on Eastern Catholic Churches likewise urges all Westerners who are in contact with these Churches, to apply themselves in learning and respecting Eastern liturgies... and it refers to the Motu Proprio “Orientis Catholici” of Benedict XV of October 15, 1917 and Pius XI’s Encyclical of September 8, 1926, “Rerum Orientalium”.

Canon 41 of the CCEO confirms this and requires them to know these liturgies precisely and to practice them.

Now, we can see that quite a few Latin religious persons translate the Latin liturgy into Arabic and they celebrate it for our Eastern faithful helping them thus to separate from their churches and to weaken their belonging to them.

With regards to the liturgical language (Instrumentum Laboris 72), we did not wait for Vatican II to translate our liturgical texts into the current language of our people. Since its origins, our Coptic liturgy was celebrated in the different dialects in Upper Egypt, and in the larger cities in Greek, the language of culture and of daily life. Since the beginning of the tenth century, we an find everything in Arabic. One factor which has helped to preserve the faith, and if we compare with other neighboring countries such as North Africa, we observe that several centuries later, Christianity, which flourished at the outset, has vanished; because a foreign liturgy in a little-known language had been imposed upon them.


I have an explanation to ask for and a wish to hope for: In a country such as ours, Egypt, where all (Catholics, non-Catholics and even non-Christians) are Copts, what is the purpose of the Latin liturgy in Arabic? If there are Latins, it is their right to celebrate the Latin Mass, but in a language other than Arabic, because this attracts our faithful and helps in their dispersal.


Finally, there is the lament of the Chaldean Archbishop of Tehran, Ramzi Garmou, who said:

Quote
The Instrumentum laboris almost ignored the vital importance of monastic and contemplative life for the renewal and the re-awakening of our churches. This form of life that was born in the East, was at the origin of an extraordinary missionary expansion and an admirable witness of our churches during the first centuries. History teaches us that the bishops were chosen among the monks, that is to say men of prayer and with a deep spiritual life, having vast experience in the “things of God”. Today, unfortunately, the choice of bishops does not obey the same criteria and we can see the results which are unfortunately not always happy ones.

The bi-millenary experience of the church confirms to us that prayer is the soul of the mission, it is thanks to this that all the activities of the church are fruitful and bear many fruits. Also, all those who participated in the reform of the church and gave back its innocent beauty and eternal youth were essentially men and women of prayer. For this reason our Lord invites us to pray without ceasing. With regret and bitterness we see that monasteries of contemplative life, source of abundant grace for the people of God, have almost disappeared in our Eastern Churches. What a great loss! How sad!


The Synod will continue until October 24, 2010, and more interventions on the sacred liturgy and related fields can be expected, although it has so far proved to be a marginal topic.







Re: Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism [Re: Tomassus] #413152
09/26/15 08:38 AM
09/26/15 08:38 AM
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If you allow your liturgies to become perverted by modernizers, then Vatican II was for naught. Wasn't one purpose of Vatican II to restore authentic Eastern liturgical practices?

Re: Infusing the spirit of the Novus Ordo into Eastern Catholicism [Re: Tomassus] #413155
09/26/15 01:27 PM
09/26/15 01:27 PM
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It was to restore authentic liturgical practice, for both East and West.


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