We are being asked to celebrate these days the 50th anniversary of a document that all but wiped out one of civilization's greatest religious, artistic and cultural treasures, the Ancient Rite of the Catholic Mass. The object of the celebration I refer to is the Second Vatican Council's ill-fated document, Sacrosanctum Concilium.
I will not be found among those joining in the general jubilation. Nor will I celebrate Hiroshima, the bombing of Dresden or the barbarian invasions of Europe for much the same reasons. All of these events had something in common: they destroyed utterly something of infinite value.
Some will correct me here by saying, "Yes, but the Ancient Rite is coming back, slowly but surely". I recognize that the hunger for beauty and for quiet will eventually see its complete restoration but to offset that optimism allow me to point out that two entire generations of Catholics have been deprived of it and the results of that deprivation are all around us. The corrosive effects of the New Order of Mass will be with us for generations, barring a miracle of Divine Grace.
To those who find this new liturgical ugliness something to cheer about I say, "Carry on", but don't ask me to assist in opening the champagne bottles. Those in the Hierarchy who colluded to bring this thing, this New Order of the Mass, to the Church may be pleased that their efforts have brought forth the kind of fruit they wanted. By the very longest of stretches I could possibly imagine that a very few of them thought they were doing the right thing. But most of this crew, or a majority at any rate, had destruction on their minds. In one fell swoop they made away with the culture of a thousand years.
And the very few who naively thought they were doing the right thing looked around the devastated vineyards and mostly said nothing.
I am weary of discussing the utter folly of what the Church authorities did to that Mass. It seems to do very little good anymore. Just as most of the world has grown accustomed to abortion most Catholics have come to terms with banality in the Liturgy. The enemies of that exquisite Rite have won the battle for the moment and they can bask in their arrogance and smugness that their own little French Revolution has seemingly triumphed so well. They have changed enough minds over forty years not to have to worry too much any longer about a return to the traditional practice. They have succeeded in creating an entire population of ardent papolaters who will go along with anything no matter how bizarre, irreverent or stupid (see the video above). Continuing to point out that the Church is little more than a smouldering ruin does not protrude itself upon their intelligences.
But I will say this. What those bastards did to that beautiful Mass is something that can never be forgiven. It was a criminal robbery that will ever be seen as an act unforgivable. Perhaps more than anything else it was the merciless destroyer of the faith of millions. And I am being asked to celebrate that?
No, I will not.