Vatican’s Ecclesia Dei Commission Reprimands Archbishop of Manila on the Unduly Restrictive Conditions on the Tridentine Mass

THE HEAD of the Vatican’s Ecclesia Dei commission has reprimanded the Archbishop of Manila, Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales, for setting “unduly restrictive” conditions on use of the Tridentine Mass, saying they were “in direct contradiction” to the wishes of Pope Benedict XVI.

“Your ‘Archdiocesan Guidelines’ are simply not acceptable as they stand and I ask you to reconsider them,” said the Ecclesia Dei president, Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, in a letter dated 6 March and seen by The Tablet this week. It said “guidelines allowing only a monthly Mass in a chapel of [the] Metropolitan Cathedral” were in violation of the norms established in the motu proprio, “Summorum Pontificum”, issued by the Pope in 2007 for the widespread use of the Tridentine Mass. Cardinal Castrillón said the papal decree was “part of the universal law of the Church” and could not be limited by the “particular law” of a diocesan bishop. The Archdiocese of Manila ministers to more than 2.8 million Catholics.

“There is simply no legitimate reason why this [Tridentine] Mass cannot and should not be celebrated in any church or chapel of your archdiocese,” Cardinal Castrillón said in his letter to the Archbishop of Manila.

He insisted that Cardinal Rosales actively promote the implementation of the motu proprio by “helping priests who are desirous to learn how to celebrate” the old rite Mass, which he said only required that the priest be “reasonably competent in Latin”, and that there were faithful who wished to assist at its celebration. The Archdiocese of Manila published the Tridentine Mass guidelines on its website last year. But they were quickly removed when supporters of the old rite protested to Rome.

A hobbit thanks to Rorate Caeli.


About Quirino M. Sugon Jr
Theoretical Physicist in Manila Observatory

15 Responses to Vatican’s Ecclesia Dei Commission Reprimands Archbishop of Manila on the Unduly Restrictive Conditions on the Tridentine Mass

  1. So what has happened since then?

  2. Quirino M. Sugon Jr says:

    My next post is the revised guidelines of the Archbishop of Manila on the Tridentine Mass:

    7. What is the responsibility of parish priests?

    In parishes, where a stable group of the faithful adheres to the 1962 Missal, the parish priest should willingly accept their request. Such Mass maybe celebrated on weekdays, and once on Sundays and feast days. The Ordinary shall determine what a “stable group” consists of.

    8. What is the responsibility of bishops?

    If a parish priest fails to satisfy the request for Tridentine Mass, the faithful that request it should inform the Ordinary. If he himself cannot satisfy the request, he should refer the matter to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei. Furthermore the Ordinary may establish a personal parish where the Tridentine rituals may be used, or he may appoint a chaplain for such group of faithful.

  3. observer says:

    does this simply mean the archbishop of manila is disobeying the pope? and thus disobeys God?

  4. servant of mary says:

    yes…he is directly disobeying the Holy Father….
    i discovered a community here wherein the latin mass is being observed…..even the choir is singing the gregorian chant perfectly….it is in Magalang, Pampanga….The Caryana Lay Monastic Community, the mass there is in latin (by a benedictine monk/priest Fr. Odon de Castro).

  5. Oh! In Spain? I was considering a bicycle tour there but didn’t because I don’t know how to find a traditional mass–could you please tell me? Magalang, Pampanga, is a town in a state in Spain, right? Can you say they have mass every Sunday?

  6. Quirino M. Sugon Jr says:

    Magalang, Pampanga is not in Spain but in Philippines. You may check Fr. Odon de Castro’s blog, “Gloria Olivae”:

  7. Oh I read it wrong! Thank you, sorry. I will check the blog.

  8. I did go to the blog, and was puzzled to see it says that Benedict has ‘confirmed that unbaptized babies go to heaven’. There is no place for comments on the blog so I could not ask for the citation. The post was from February. Since tradition does not teach this and since it is an enormous question among pro-life activists, I will try to inquire further, but if you know offhand where Father is quoting from, I would welcome it.

  9. Quirino M. Sugon Jr says:

    It was also puzzling to me, too. What the Vatican document simply states is this:

    “Our conclusion is that the many factors that we have considered … give serious theological and liturgical grounds for hope that unbaptized infants who die will be saved and enjoy the beatific vision.”

    “We emphasize that these are reasons for prayerful hope, rather than grounds for sure knowledge.”

    Thus, the safest way is to get infants baptized as soon as possible and commend to the mercy of God those who were not baptized. I think Fr. Odon is basing his conclusion from newspapers which quote interpretations of liberal theologians like Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J.:

    “Parents who are mourning the death of their child are no longer going to be burdened with the added guilt of not having gotten their child baptized,” said the Rev. Thomas Reese, a senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University. (USA Today)

  10. Well, that’s not exactly the same thing as saying that the Church is teaching that ‘unbaptized infants go to heaven’ as I believe the post said. It’s saying we HOPE they go to heaven.( I hope everybody goes to heaven.) There was a commission–was it last spring? –that concluded as presented, but much issue was taken by traditionalists, and again, it’s not definitive Church teaching yet and I hope it never becomes so. I spend several hours a week outside an abortion mill and am unfortunately all too familiar with the way abortion seekers will clutch at any pretext to justify their actions. “I don’t care if I go to hell–this baby’s going to heaven!” would be very convenient.

  11. Ivan says:

    Hi! It should come as no surprise that Odon’s Caryana Lay Monastic Community upholds doctrines which are incompatible with the teachings of the Magisterium because Odon himself was stripped of priestly vestments when he was expelled from his Benedictine order and the canonical status of Caryana denied by the late Jaime Cardinal Sin. They celebrate the Pauline Mass in Latin attended by guests and the Tridentine rite exclusively among their community (or cult to use the more precise term). Odon teaches many heretical and novel and funny doctrines including the above mentioned question posed by whitelily. Catholics should avoid and shun his group lest one should incur the sin of heresy.

  12. Michael O'Farrell says:

    The Modernists have been trying to eliminate the teaching on Limbo for many, many years. Just one warning; if all unbaptized babies went to Heaven, women who do not want their child could say, “Well, I’m sending him to Heaven”.

    A couple of years ago there was a meeting of senior ecclesiastics in Rome to “discuss” the teaching on Limbo. Several Press Releases promptly appeared, stating as a fact that the teaching on Limbo was to be dropped. At the actual meeting, however, Pope Benedict reaffirmed this teaching, and warned those present that theologians were free only to explain and interpret Catholic teaching, not to overturn it.

    Unfortunately, no disciplinary action was, to my knowledge, taken against the clerics who had issued the unauthorised press releases.

    This tactic, of pressurising via the media, was perfected during the sessions of Vatican II. Hitherto, the Vatican has tended to back down under the pressure. Notice that the then Cdl Ratzinger was on record as doubting the existence of Limbo, but as Pope Benedict he has upheld the Church’s teaching – that, given what we know of the conditions for Sanctifying Grace, the Church cannot affirm that unbaptised infants receive this Grace. They must, however, be somewhere: and the name given to it is Limbo.

  13. Tim says:

    Limbo was only a theory. It is not true to say that Pope Benedict “re-affirmed” this “teaching”. It was NEVER a teaching.
    The Vatican’s theological commission’s statement on Limbo is available from their site:
    This discussion at Catholics United for the Faith is a good summary:
    The Church just maintains the hope that unbaptized babies are saved.

  14. I was amazed in my first time until i din’t still understand all about the history and cases of caryana and Fr.Odon , but i want to ask i he is a Heretic Priest then may be many of his followers will little by little not to follow him anymore but it seems that Fr.Odon is one of the way other person who don’t have much knowledge about the magisterium and the teachings will be introduce to the little and way by way steps of salvation i need to be understood please help me ….

    secondly i heard to them some of bishops go to to that place at caryana and staying there for some sort of retreat and reflection that they also and encourage other to stay them isnt’ true!????

  15. Tim says:

    Getting back to the original story here, I’ve heard that Rev. Chupungco was behind the archbishop’s attempt to block the Trid. mass. Any truth to that?

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