significant, Yes; new, No

By Diogenes (articles - email) | Jan 13, 2008

There's one glaring error after another in the Reuters story. (Go ahead; test yourself. If you can't identify at least 8 errors, you need to read CWN stories more carefully.) Let's just take the introductory sentence:

Pope Benedict celebrated parts of Sunday's Mass with his back turned on the congregation, re-introducing an old ritual that had not been used in decades.

This wasn't an old ritual. It was the Novus Ordo Mass-- the same ritual you probably followed in your own parish this Sunday.

True, the Pope celebrated ad orientem, and that hasn't been done-- by a Roman Pontiff in a public ceremony-- for quite a while. For that reason it's significant.

But what the Pope did on Sunday can be done by any priest anywhere in the Latin rite, and is done routinely by many priests-- including the Pope himself, in his own private chapel. The ad orientem posture was not abolished by Vatican II or by any other liturgical directive.

Richard Cross holds a doctorate in psychology, who has taught at the university level, including at Franciscan University. He is currently an educational researcher and consultant in the field of psychology and related disciplines.
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