February 1, 2015

The Remnant: The Traditional Latin Mass: A Reenactment of Christ’s Last Days on Earth

I feel duty-bound to post the link to this timely article in The Remnant, written by Father Leonard Goffine over 2 centuries ago, but as relavant today as it most likely was then. When we consider the two forms of Mass available today, it has always seemed to me the terms OF and EF are glaringly misapplied, if for no other reason than Fr. Goffine's conclusion to his commentary:

"At the same time it is seen from this, that those who wish the Mass to be said in their own language instead of Latin, complain unnecessarily, for everyone can unite himself with the priest and make his offering in his own tongue, since with God it does not depend upon the language, and there is in most prayer books an explanation of the ceremonies connected with suitable prayers. The Catholic Church has very wisely retained the Latin as the language of the Mass, as a means of preserving ecclesiastical unity, and Catholics can everywhere recognize themselves as such, when they find in every land the same divine service in the same language.

The holy Sacrifice would, besides, be endangered by the introduction of the different languages of the countries in which it is said, because the vernacular is always subjected to changes, would give rise to false interpretations, diminish reverence for the Most Holy Sacrifice, and might endanger the faith itself, while the Latin language is peculiarly suited to the dignity and majesty of the Mass; for it is truly a royal language, and is the language of the missionaries who subjected the world to the cross.

The celebration of the Mass is not for the instruction of the people so much as for their edification, and this easily results if each of the faithful assists with heart and lips, as best he can, at the Holy Sacrifice, having the sincere desire to share in all its fruits, which our loving Saviour obtained for us on the cross and wishes to bestow upon us. We are enriched by His merits, purified by His most precious blood, nourished and strengthened in the way of virtue by His most Sacred Body, and are changed from children of wrath to children of God, and chosen heirs of heaven."

The entire Remnant article is available here.

Fr. Goffine was seemingly every bit the precursor to St. John Marie Vianney, who was born 67 years after his death and the Patron Saint of Priests:

"...Goffine was a truly apostolic pastor, filled with an untiring zeal for souls, who edified everyone by his word and by his example. The purity of his life, the integrity of his morals, the fervour of his sermons, the pleasing style of his writings, commanded the respect of even the enemies of his religion. From the rudest and most forward of these he had often to endure the bitterest insults, but at these he showed himself the more cheerful, since by them he became the more conformable to those who had the happiness to suffer insults for the name of Jesus". (From his bio linked above)

Copyright 2015 David Heath - All Rights Reserved

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