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Catholic Culture Resources
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Scottish archbishop discourages use of extraordinary form

June 07, 2011

A Scottish archbishop has told his priests that there is “no requirement or indeed encouragement for any of us to promote the so-called extraordinary form” of the Mass—despite the clear Vatican call for wide use of the traditional liturgy.

“I venture to suggest that there is no call for it, or pastoral reason to change what has become the settled practice of the archdiocese,” Archbishop Mario Conti of Glasgow said in a letter to his priests. He added that most Catholics would find the Novus Ordo Mass less “mysterious” than the extraordinary form.

Archbishop Conti’s letter appeared less than a month after publication of a new Vatican Instruction urging wider acceptance of the traditional liturgy. Universae Ecclesiae, following up on and clarifying the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, indicated that priests in good standing do not need the permission of their diocesan bishops in order to celebrate Mass in the extraordinary form.


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  • Posted by: - Jun. 08, 2011 8:47 AM ET USA

    Please, dear Pope, put Conti on an island somewhere, all alone and not here in this country - we have enough of our own defiant bishops.

  • Posted by: New Sister - Jun. 08, 2011 2:42 AM ET USA

    jdempsey - actually, the Holy See does encourage this rite, especially in Seminaries, and especially for "pastoral" reasons. His Excellency is mistaken to state otherwise.

  • Posted by: filioque - Jun. 08, 2011 12:24 AM ET USA

    No one has been ordered to celebrate the EF, but bishops have been told that they should make training available to their priests and seminarians to celebrate the EF and seminarians should be instructed in Latin. See Universae Ecclesiae, n. 21. Archb. Conti appears to be falling short of this standard.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 07, 2011 7:47 PM ET USA

    Deliver the Scots from anything "mysterious".

  • Posted by: Contrary1995 - Jun. 07, 2011 7:08 PM ET USA

    There is nothing in Archbishop Conti's letter that contradicts the decision of the Holy See. The pope has not ordered the promotion of the extraordinary rite. Those priests who want to offer it may without prejudice, but bishops are not obliged to promote the extraordinary rite itself.

  • Posted by: impossible - Jun. 07, 2011 6:54 PM ET USA

    This archbishop no doubt demands courtesy, respect and obedience from his priests, but in view of his adolescent behavior, how can he expect it of them? The Pope should take prompt steps to assist and hasten this man's departure from office.

  • Posted by: Biscjim - Jun. 07, 2011 6:20 PM ET USA

    There sure wasn't a lot of "call" for the new Mass back in 1970, yet it was forced down our throats anyway.

  • Posted by: Lucius49 - Jun. 07, 2011 4:55 PM ET USA

    This type of disrespect and disobedience to the Holy Father must be swiftly dealt with. Will there soon be a vacancy in the See of Glasgow?