Why I Support the Latin Mass

Let me say first, that I have only experienced the Latin Mass via video, I have never actually been to one. If I had the opportunity, I would in a heartbeat, but all of these comments are purely speculation.

 

It seems we have lost the reverence. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the supreme human act, there is nothing greater that we as human beings can do in this life. When I go to Mass though, this is not a feeling I have.
When we come into the church, most people are chatting away. They hardly seem to notice the fact that they are in the direct presence of our Savior. Here they are in the presence of Almighty God, and they look like they are just breezing in after a show. It almost feels like they are grabbing a burger and fries.
This is suppose to be a time a great reflection, and instead it’s a time for everyone to catch up after a long week. I find it nearly impossible to actually pray in church due to all the constant chatter.

 

Far worse than this though, our numbers are dwindling. When Mass was viewed with reverence, as a holy moment that you were privelidged to even be able to attend, people actually came. Somewhere in the changes in the Mass, the holy need to actually be there was removed. Even good meaning, dedicated Catholics seem to often think that going to Mass every week is an optional activity.Somewhere along the line, Mass turned from being an opportunity to share in the divine, to a mere spiritual exercise, something like praying before we go to sleep, or a bible study group. Not something that is actually necessary for the salvation of our souls.

This is really bad stuff. When Mass becomes just another religious service, we are really missing the point. The Novus Ordo, the Mass form we celebrate now, only complicates this mentality. Let me tell you why.

They say in the Tridentine Mass, the priest faced away from us, but that’s not entirely true. The priest was with us, facing the same direction we were. We are an Easter people, which of course means, we face the east, looking towards the rising sun, and the rising Son. The priest is one of us, so he too should face the east. The other powerful image here it that of the priest as more of an office, and less of an individual. I think this is one of the reasons the priesthood was so deeply respected.

This is just one example of many, but the functional point is, in the Tridentine Mass, you are present at a miracle, and you just can’t miss it. When the miracle happens the bells start ringing. You are present with the holy choir of angels, and the world starts and ends here. You truly get the feeling of ancient timelessness, the deep sense of being somewhere beyond the ordinary. These sensual feelings are not to be discounted.

In the Novus Ordo, you can’t help but feel you are at a community gathering. We are focused on whether or not our priest is charismatic enough, and if we don’t like him, well let’s either parish hop and find one we do or just stop going altogether. Our first thought is never the holiness of the actual event.

There is a caveat to this of course. That will have to be saved until tomorrow.

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