Saturday, July 07, 2007

Summorum Pontificum (English Translation-not official)

VATICAN CITY, JUL 7, 2007 (VIS) - Given below is a non-official English-
language translation of the Apostolic Letter "Motu Proprio data" of Pope
Benedict XVI, "Summorum Pontificum," concerning the use of the Roman liturgy
prior to the reform of 1970. The original text is written in Latin.


"Up to our own times, it has been the constant concern of supreme pontiffs
to ensure that the Church of Christ offers a worthy ritual to the Divine
Majesty, 'to the praise and glory of His name,' and 'to the benefit of all His
Holy Church.'

"Since time immemorial it has been necessary - as it is also for the future
- to maintain the principle according to which 'each particular Church must
concur with the universal Church, not only as regards the doctrine of the
faith and the sacramental signs, but also as regards the usages universally
accepted by uninterrupted apostolic tradition, which must be observed not only
to avoid errors but also to transmit the integrity of the faith, because the
Church's law of prayer corresponds to her law of faith.' (1)

"Among the pontiffs who showed that requisite concern, particularly
outstanding is the name of St. Gregory the Great, who made every effort to
ensure that the new peoples of Europe received both the Catholic faith and the
treasures of worship and culture that had been accumulated by the Romans in
preceding centuries. He commanded that the form of the sacred liturgy as
celebrated in Rome (concerning both the Sacrifice of Mass and the Divine
Office) be conserved. He took great concern to ensure the dissemination of
monks and nuns who, following the Rule of St. Benedict, together with the
announcement of the Gospel illustrated with their lives the wise provision of
their Rule that 'nothing should be placed before the work of God.' In this way
the sacred liturgy, celebrated according to the Roman use, enriched not only
the faith and piety but also the culture of many peoples. It is known, in
fact, that the Latin liturgy of the Church in its various forms, in each
century of the Christian era, has been a spur to the spiritual life of many
saints, has reinforced many peoples in the virtue of religion and fecundated
their piety.

"Many other Roman pontiffs, in the course of the centuries, showed
particular solicitude in ensuring that the sacred liturgy accomplished this
task more effectively. Outstanding among them is St. Pius V who, sustained by
great pastoral zeal and following the exhortations of the Council of Trent,
renewed the entire liturgy of the Church, oversaw the publication of
liturgical books amended and 'renewed in accordance with the norms of the
Fathers,' and provided them for the use of the Latin Church.

"One of the liturgical books of the Roman rite is the Roman Missal, which
developed in the city of Rome and, with the passing of the centuries, little
by little took forms very similar to that it has had in recent times.

"'It was towards this same goal that succeeding Roman Pontiffs directed
their energies during the subsequent centuries in order to ensure that the
rites and liturgical books were brought up to date and when necessary
clarified. From the beginning of this century they undertook a more general
reform.' (2) Thus our predecessors Clement VIII, Urban VIII, St. Pius X (3),
Benedict XV, Pius XII and Blessed John XXIII all played a part.

"In more recent times, Vatican Council II expressed a desire that the
respectful reverence due to divine worship should be renewed and adapted to
the needs of our time. Moved by this desire our predecessor, the Supreme
Pontiff Paul VI, approved, in 1970, reformed and partly renewed liturgical
books for the Latin Church. These, translated into the various languages of
the world, were willingly accepted by bishops, priests and faithful. John Paul
II amended the third typical edition of the Roman Missal. Thus Roman pontiffs
have operated to ensure that 'this kind of liturgical edifice ... should again
appear resplendent for its dignity and harmony.' (4)

"But in some regions, no small numbers of faithful adhered and continue to
adhere with great love and affection to the earlier liturgical forms. These
had so deeply marked their culture and their spirit that in 1984 the Supreme
Pontiff John Paul II, moved by a concern for the pastoral care of these
faithful, with the special indult 'Quattuor abhinc anno," issued by the
Congregation for Divine Worship, granted permission to use the Roman Missal
published by Blessed John XXIII in the year 1962. Later, in the year 1988,
John Paul II with the Apostolic Letter given as Motu Proprio, 'Ecclesia Dei,'
exhorted bishops to make generous use of this power in favor of all the
faithful who so desired.

"Following the insistent prayers of these faithful, long deliberated upon by
our predecessor John Paul II, and after having listened to the views of the
Cardinal Fathers of the Consistory of 22 March 2006, having reflected deeply
upon all aspects of the question, invoked the Holy Spirit and trusting in the
help of God, with these Apostolic Letters we establish the following:

"Art 1. The Roman Missal promulgated by Paul VI is the ordinary expression
of the 'Lex orandi' (Law of prayer) of the Catholic Church of the Latin rite.
Nonetheless, the Roman Missal promulgated by St. Pius V and reissued by Bl.
John XXIII is to be considered as an extraordinary expression of that same
'Lex orandi,' and must be given due honour for its venerable and ancient
usage. These two expressions of the Church's Lex orandi will in no any way
lead to a division in the Church's 'Lex credendi' (Law of belief). They are,
in fact two usages of the one Roman rite.

"It is, therefore, permissible to celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass
following the typical edition of the Roman Missal promulgated by Bl. John
XXIII in 1962 and never abrogated, as an extraordinary form of the Liturgy of
the Church. The conditions for the use of this Missal as laid down by earlier
documents 'Quattuor abhinc annis' and 'Ecclesia Dei,' are substituted as

"Art. 2. In Masses celebrated without the people, each Catholic priest of
the Latin rite, whether secular or regular, may use the Roman Missal published
by Bl. Pope John XXIII in 1962, or the Roman Missal promulgated by Pope Paul
VI in 1970, and may do so on any day with the exception of the Easter Triduum.
For such celebrations, with either one Missal or the other, the priest has no
need for permission from the Apostolic See or from his Ordinary.

"Art. 3. Communities of Institutes of consecrated life and of Societies of
apostolic life, of either pontifical or diocesan right, wishing to celebrate
Mass in accordance with the edition of the Roman Missal promulgated in 1962,
for conventual or "community" celebration in their oratories, may do so. If an
individual community or an entire Institute or Society wishes to undertake
such celebrations often, habitually or permanently, the decision must be taken
by the Superiors Major, in accordance with the law and following their own
specific decrees and statues.

"Art. 4. Celebrations of Mass as mentioned above in art. 2 may - observing
all the norms of law - also be attended by faithful who, of their own free
will, ask to be admitted.

"Art. 5. õ 1 In parishes, where there is a stable group of faithful who
adhere to the earlier liturgical tradition, the pastor should willingly accept
their requests to celebrate the Mass according to the rite of the Roman Missal
published in 1962, and ensure that the welfare of these faithful harmonises
with the ordinary pastoral care of the parish, under the guidance of the
bishop in accordance with canon 392, avoiding discord and favouring the unity
of the whole Church.
õ 2 Celebration in accordance with the Missal of Bl. John XXIII may take
place on working days; while on Sundays and feast days one such celebration
may also be held.
õ 3 For faithful and priests who request it, the pastor should also allow
celebrations in this extraordinary form for special circumstances such as
marriages, funerals or occasional celebrations, e.g. pilgrimages.
õ 4 Priests who use the Missal of Bl. John XXIII must be qualified to do
so and not juridically impeded.
õ 5 In churches that are not parish or conventual churches, it is the
duty of the Rector of the church to grant the above permission.

Art. 6. In Masses celebrated in the presence of the people in accordance with
the Missal of Bl. John XXIII, the readings may be given in the vernacular,
using editions recognised by the Apostolic See.

"Art. 7. If a group of lay faithful, as mentioned in art. 5 õ 1, has not
obtained satisfaction to their requests from the pastor, they should inform
the diocesan bishop. The bishop is strongly requested to satisfy their wishes.
If he cannot arrange for such celebration to take place, the matter should be
referred to the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei".

"Art. 8. A bishop who, desirous of satisfying such requests, but who for
various reasons is unable to do so, may refer the problem to the Commission
"Ecclesia Dei" to obtain counsel and assistance.

"Art. 9. õ 1 The pastor, having attentively examined all aspects, may also
grant permission to use the earlier ritual for the administration of the
Sacraments of Baptism, Marriage, Penance, and the Anointing of the Sick, if
the good of souls would seem to require it.
õ 2 Ordinaries are given the right to celebrate the Sacrament of
Confirmation using the earlier Roman Pontifical, if the good of souls would
seem to require it.
õ 2 Clerics ordained "in sacris constitutis" may use the Roman Breviary
promulgated by Bl. John XXIII in 1962.

"Art. 10. The ordinary of a particular place, if he feels it appropriate,
may erect a personal parish in accordance with can. 518 for celebrations
following the ancient form of the Roman rite, or appoint a chaplain, while
observing all the norms of law.

"Art. 11. The Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei", erected by John Paul II
in 1988 (5), continues to exercise its function. Said Commission will have the
form, duties and norms that the Roman Pontiff wishes to assign it.

"Art. 12. This Commission, apart from the powers it enjoys, will exercise
the authority of the Holy See, supervising the observance and application of
these dispositions.

"We order that everything We have established with these Apostolic Letters
issued as Motu Proprio be considered as "established and decreed", and to be
observed from 14 September of this year, Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross,
whatever there may be to the contrary.

" From Rome, at St. Peter's, 7 July 2007, third year of Our Pontificate."

(1) General Instruction of the Roman Missal, 3rd ed., 2002, no. 397.
(2) John Paul II, Apostolic Letter "Vicesimus quintus annus," 4 December
1988, 3: AAS 81 (1989), 899.
(3) Ibid.
(4) St. Pius X, Apostolic Letter Motu propio data, "Abhinc duos annos," 23
October 1913: AAS 5 (1913), 449-450; cf John Paul II, Apostolic Letter
"Vicesimus quintus annus," no. 3: AAS 81 (1989), 899.
(5) Cf John Paul II, Apostolic Letter Motu proprio data "Ecclesia Dei," 2
July 1988, 6: AAS 80 (1988), 1498.



No comments: