06 February 2009

Summorum Pontificum Flouted in Manila

I am glad to comply with the request of Rorate Caeli to post this story. This kind of arrogance in the face of a motu proprio (which has the force of law) issued by the Pope is shocking, even by today's standards:

Decree of the Archdiocese of Manila regarding the Missal of 1962

This has just been posted on the website of the Archdiocese of Manila. I am reposting it here for informational purposes, with my comments and comparisons to Summorum Pontificum (SP), which governs the celebration of the Extraordinary Form (EF), in orange.


In accordance with the norms laid down by the Apostolic Letter, issued motu propio, of His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, Summorum Pontificum, We hereby establish the following guidelines and conditions (conditions?) on the celebration of the Mass according to the rite of the Roman Missal published in 1962 (Tridentine Mass) in the Archdiocese of Manila:

The regulation of the celebration of this extraordinary form of the Mass belongs to the Archbishop of Manila, through the Minister of the Ministry for Liturgical Affairs of the Archdiocese of Manila. In the sense that a Bishop is responsible for the proper celebration of the liturgy in his diocese, yes. In the sense that he can superimpose additional and more stringent conditions on the use of the EF than are in SP, then no.

This form of Mass is to be celebrated only at the Christ the King Chapel of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Manila once a month, but not on Sundays and Solemnities. SP states that every priest can celebrate the EF at every parish, at least privately. Pastors can elect to celebrate it publicly daily.

The presider at this form of celebration should be a priest duly appointed by the Archbishop of Manila. In a sense-- the priest must have faculties, but SP does not require any special deputation.

To ensure the solemnity and orderliness of the celebration of this form of Mass, the participation of other ministers (i.e., lectors, Master of Ceremonies, servers, choir, etc.) in the liturgy is to be determined and regulated by the Ministry for Liturgical Affairs of the Archdiocese of Manila. This is not required by SP and is an obvious opportunity for novelty in the EF.

The celebration of the extraordinary form of the Mass in this Chapel is open to any individual or group in the Archdiocese of Manila who may have the desire to participate in such celebrations. If you're counting, this makes one accurate statement.

Further requests from individuals or groups from the parishes of or who belong to the Archdiocese of Manila to celebrate this form of Mass is to be directed to join the monthly celebration at the Manila Cathedral. SP states that Pastors should respond favorably to requests from the faithful to have the EF. If there is a difficulty in providing for it, then ultimately the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei is to be notified so that it may help the Bishop to make provision. No prior Episcopal permission is required to celebrate the EF.

It is highly encouraged that a missal / booklet of the rite in Latin and English be prepared to help the faithful follow the celebration. It is like wise encouraged that those who will participate in this Mass undergo a catechetical orientation before the celebration. I would add that it would be highly encouraged that the faithful who attend the Ordinary Form undergo catechetical instruction, too.

The Archbishop of Manila has jurisdiction over this celebration and, therefore, can decide to limit or discontinue this monthly celebration anytime he judges that this is not consonance with the whole pastoral direction of the Local Church. That would be simply untrue. Read SP. It also constitutes a not-well-veiled threat.

Given in Manila, this 8th day of December 2008. Our Lady must blush.
Archbishop of Manila


Summorum Pontificum itself can be read here.


Anonymous said...

Much ado about nothing.

Anonymous said...

So did his Excellency even bother to read Summorum Pontificum??

Gregory Thaumaturgas said...

This deliberate flouting of the Pope's authority is almost as shocking as Bishop Williamson's denial of the gas chambers! I couldn't believe it was true even when I read it on the official rcam.org website.

Gregory Thaumaturgas said...

In case people don't want to search all through the MP, I've got the passage right here--handily taken from RORATE CÆLI's blog ;)

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.

thetimman said...

TGL, you and I should have a traveling show.

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Well, we know he's not a friend, i believe this is the beginning.

Anonymous said...

Like Hannity and Colmes

Anonymous said...


So, how do you define "nothing"?

By "nothing" do you mean that there's no need to worry that the Archbishop has either accidentally or purposefully misinterpreted Summorum Pontificum, and that by his letter he would appear to be suppressing the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, and also opening door for possible abuses of the Mass?

Or, are you calling the Extraordinary Form of the Mass 'nothing'?

Or, is the Archbishop's letter "nothing"?

You really need to clarify that for us.

Mark S.
New Haven, MO

Anonymous said...

I would assume that the poster of "Institute of Christ the King" has been given the ok to speak for the Institute?

If not, then please thetimman do not post those comments. It seems to me someone might think they are speaking on behalf of something they are not.

a faithful reader

Gregory Thaumaturgas said...

Dear Anonymous,

Thanks for pointing out that it might not be a great idea to have my display name be that of the Institute. As I demonstrate with my new name here--which I will change immediately after posting this comment--in blogger, you can choose whatever name you want. I could make my display name be THETIMMAN although I doubt whether or not Tim would post it if I did that.

Nevertheless, you make a good point. From now on it will be something like "Peter" or something like that. ;)

Anonymous said...


According to Canon Law, the Archbishop of Manila has gone into schism by rejecting the authority of the Pope. He has excommunicated himself.

Just ask Archbishop Burke.

He is now a Protestant, formerly a Catholic like Fr. Martin Luther.

So now he joins Cardinal Mahoney and many others traitors to Christ.

The Vatican II "Renewal" continues apace.


Anonymous said...

Not so fast. If Pope Benedict can reconcile with Bishop Williamson, it is the same with Cardinal Rosales.

Just remember, the truth in charity.


Anonymous said...


John XXIII's "medicine of mercy" concept, in which heresy and schism are viewed as minor matters in comparison to the opportunities for an ecumenical and interfaith love fest, has sickened the Church for two generations now.

Many Cardinals warned John XXIII about the grave dangers of making so many radical changes in the Church's liturgy, doctrine, and customs.

In an opening speech before the Vatican II Council, John XXIII ridiculed and humiliated those holy, venerable Cardinals as being "prophets of doom."

Now the sad, lamentable rotten fruit of the Council has verified that those Cardinals who were counseling caution were right and John "The Updater" XXIII was wrong.

Our devout Bishop Hermann has been writing lately with deep sadness about the profound loss of Catholic identity among Catholics.

Enough is enough. Time to stop the madness.


Anonymous said...


Don't take on Blessed John XXIII. He's WAY out of your league!

Anonymous said...


You protest too much. Why don't you just go to a Tridentine Latin Mass near you, hopefully St. Francis de Sales? If you go with an open mind, I assure you that you WILL be moved! You may even want to go again, and again, and again. Just as many of us have.

Anonymous said...


I served the tridentine Mass as a youth, and I can still recite certain portions of the mass that the servers did. I recently went to a tridentine mass at the Oratory of St. Patrick. I found absolutely nothing objectionable about it, but I much prefer the regular mass said in a language I truly understand. I also appreciate the ability to truly participate in the mass, and not just be an observor, watching the priest do his thing. I have nothing whatsoever against those who prefer the Tridentine mass, other than the fact that some of them express opinions that demonstrate a mean-spiritness that is unbecoming of Christians.

HSMom said...

TGL said "I also appreciate the ability to truly participate in the mass, and not just be an observor, watching the priest do his thing."

What a different perspective I have. For I love the TLM BECAUSE I can truly assist ('participate') at Mass through my simultaneous prayers for and with Father, whereas at the N.O. I feel bombarded with, and distracted by, the obligation to speak, and do, rather than meditating on that which is taking place. I am no mere 'observer' at the TLM.