About

Dear Readers,

Welcome to this blog, which has as its main goal the divulgation of the particularities of the Bragan rite, namely those found in the last edition of the missal, that of 1924. Given the scant resources on-line concerning this rite (there is not even a digitalized version of the missal), we aim to make available with a certain regularity, for those who have a particular penchant for things liturgical, the differences between the Bragan missal in its latest incarnation and the 1962 Roman missal (currently used in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman rite), as well as with the current Roman missal, whenever possible or of interest.

This blog also hopes to renew interest in this much neglected (and virtually moribund) rite, and to show that the Roman Church has always had a healthy dose of liturgical plurality through out her history. This blog hopes to not only foster historical curiosity, but personal piety as well, to help one rediscover the Liturgy as the place of theologia prima.

We count on your participation as well, to make up for anything lacking.

 

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10 Responses to About

  1. Dr Carol Byrne says:

    Many thanks for your splendid contribution to knowledge of the Church’s historic rite of Braga. I am doing some research into the liturgy and was delighted to see the 1924 typical edition of the Missale Bracarense online. I have a particular request to make regarding the Introduction to the Missal written by Pope Pius XI (pp. vii-ix). Could you please put these pages online?
    I would be extremely grateful. Thanking you in advance.

    • Juan Jeanniton says:

      Mrs. Byrne, I have been trying to contact your for years on an important matter that you must know. In your website, http://www.traditioninaction.org/HotTopics/f074_Dialogue_2.htm, you claim that “Pius X Did Not Call for ‘Active Participation’ in Liturgy”: but the only evidence for your claim you present is the fact that evidence for congregational singing is absent from the Motu Proprio. However, I have proof that the restoration of congregational singing was indeed his true motive, and that therefore your claim is false.

      “In the courses of parochial instruction or on other suitable occasions, they (the parish priests of Rome) must expound the Holy Father’s lofty purpose in reforming sacred music and invite the faithful to second their endeavors, chiefly by taking an active part in the sacred functions, singing the Common of the Mass as well as the psalms, the well-known liturgical hymns and the hymns of the vulgar tongue.” Regulations for Sacred Music in the Province of Rome,

      Pp. Pius X, February 2, 1912

      “This is what must be urged – the Gregorian chant and the means of making it popular. Oh, if I could only make the faithful sing the Kyrie, the Gloria, the Credo, the Sanctus, and the Agnus Dei like they sing the litanies and the Tantum Ergo. That would be to me the finest triumph sacred music could have, for it is in really taking part in the liturgy that the faithful will preserve their devotion.” Letter of St. Pius X while Archbishop of Venice
      to Monsignor Callegari, bishop of Padua

    • Juan Jeanniton says:

      Furthermore, you have been persisting in your malicious lies against “active participation” in the Holy Mass. In your Session 68: Preparing for the Novus Ordo Missae (see http://www.traditioninaction.org/HotTop … gue_68.htm for the source), you write: “3 Ibid., § 12. We must briefly mention the popular reports of a letter, bandied around the internet, allegedly written by Pius X, before he became Pope, to Bishop Callegari of Padua. In it, he is quoted as favoring congregational singing in the liturgy even above polyphony. There are several different versions of the letter, each purporting to be the original text, and these are put forward as “proof.” But no archival source is given with which to verify the authenticity of the letter.

      Further research reveals that the letter originated from Pius X’s early biographers who each added their own creative interpretation to support their subjective idea of what the Pope must have said, so that the final telling is, as in the children’s game of Chinese Whispers, a complete distortion. Thus, a false “authority” is created to support an ideological position.”

      There are three malicious lies you have told in that passage. First of all, you dodged the issue of the letter of Pius X to Bishop/Monsignor Callegari of Padua concerning congregational singing by not printing it out in full. Secondly, in your objection that “no archival source is given with which to verify the authenticity of the letter”, you are still committing the fallacy of mistaking absence of proof for proof of absence. Thirdly, you are still CONTINUING to IGNORE vital pieces of evidence showing just how virtually EVERY diocese of the so-called Roman Catholic Church launched a MASSIVE HEROIC CRUSADE to restore congregational singing into the Holy Mass, which can be found in The Gregorian Review, Volume V, Number 2, Mar/Apr 1958, pages 24-27 (for the source, see https://media.musicasacra.com/publicati … /gr_52.pdf), and which shows that the weight of evidence is in favor of “active participation” (viz. congregational singing) in the Holy Mass.

    • Juan Jeanniton says:

      I have also forgotten another important piece of evidence you must not ignore.
      Decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites: The Singing of Women in Church!

      Latin: Per decretum n. 3964 De Truxillo die 17 Sept. 1897 prohibitum fuit ut “mulieres et puellae intra vel extra ambitum Chori canant in missis Solemnibus ” idemque confirmatum est die 19 Feb. 1903. Attamen cum in Motu Proprio SS. D. N. Pii X, Inter pastoralis officii de musica sacra d.d. 22 Nov. 1903, praecipiatur ut “Cantus Gregorianus in populi usus restituendus curetur, quo ad divinas laudes mysteriaque celebranda magis agentium partem, antiquorum more, fideles conferant,” quaeritur: Licebitne permittere ut puellae ac mulieres in scamnis sedentes ipsis in ecclesia assignatis separatim a viris, partes invariabiles missae Cantent; vel saltem extra functiones stricte liturgicas, hymnos et cantilenas vernaculas concinant?
      Et S. Rituum Congregatio ad relationem subscripti Secretarii, exquisitis votis utriusque Commissionis tum liturgicae turn de musica et Cantu Sacro, omnibusque sedul6 perpensis, ita rescribendum censuit: Affirmative, ad utrumque et ad mentem. Mens est: Ut intra christifideles viri et pueri, quantum fieri potest, suam partem laudibus divinis celebrandis conferant, haud exclusis tamen, maxime ipsorum defectu, mulieribus et puellis. Et 2° ut ubi officiatura choralis habetur Cantus exclusivus mulierum, praesertim in cathedralibus ecclesiis non admittatur nisi ex gravi causa ab Ordinario agnoscenda ; et caute semper ut quaevis inordinatio vitetur.’

      English: It had been forbidden in Decree No. 3964 of Trujillo on September 17, 1987 for women / girls whether inside or outside the precincts of the choir to sing in solemn Masses: and the same was confirmed on February 19, 1903. But then our Most Holy Father the Pope Pius X, in his Motu Proprio, Inter Pastoralis Officii de Musica Sacra, on November 22, 1903, prescribes that the Gregorian Chant must be restored for the use of the people, so that they, the faithful, may take a more active part in the mysteries and praises of God in the Liturgy, no less than in the days of ancient times. We therefore inquire: Will it therefore be lawful to permit for women and girls sitting in duly assigned seats segregated from the men & boys, to sing the invariable parts of the Mass, or outside of the strictly liturgical functions, sing hymns and other songs in the vernacular?

      And the Sacred Congregation of Rites answered on January 17, 1908: … Yes to both the one and the other, and according to the mind of the church, which is that (1) Among the Christian faithful church attendees men and boys to the best of their ability should sing their parts of the divine praises, however, not excluding the women and girls, especially in cases of the lack of men and boys; (2) However, when it comes to the official status of a Choir, the singing of women & girls alone, especially in cathedral churches, is not admissible except for sufficiently grave reasons duly acknowledged by the Ordinary: and also with the additional caution to avoid all unseemliness and scandal.

      The permission granted by the SCR for women to sing congregationally in all cases, and to sing in choirs only for sufficiently grave reasons recognized by the Ordinary actually REFUTES your contention that Pius X never intended to restore congregational singing in the Divine Liturgy!

    • Juan Jeanniton says:

      Oh! Here is some more evidence that you have ignored:
      _The Gregorian Review_, Volume V, Number 2, Mar/Apr 1958, pages 24-27:
      https://media.musicasacra.com/publications/caecilia/gr_52.pdf:


      The revival of Catholic life in the middle of the nineteenth century made the education of all the people in regard to Gregorian chant just that much more urgent. In 1850 the provincial Council of Rouen ordered: “The chant of the Church, sober and simple, must be preserved, or, where such is necessary, revived, in conformity with the ancient custom of the Church; each age, each state, men as well as women, should unite their voices in utter piety and simplicity to those of the priests and of the choirs of Angels, to render divine praise [2].

      This invitation was repeated that same year by the Synod of Bourges [3].

      The Synod of Lyon, which took place that same year, was to draw attention to the fact that Gregorian chant had disappeared with very serious detriment to religion itself [4].

      2. Deer. 2, No 5 : c Cantus eecIesiasticus vel retineatur, vel, si opus fuerit, restitu-
      atur ilata pristinam EecIesiae gravitatem et simpIicitatem.• No 6 : c Moneantur
      omnes, ut in divinis laudibus persolvendis unusquisque euiusvis aetatis, condi-
      tionis et sexus, vocem suam choro Angelorum et presbyterorum pie ae simpliciter
      admisceat .• CI 4, 521 a.
      3. No I. CI 4, 1111. : c Quanto oblectamento quantaeque utilitati sit fideIibus perita
      et religiosa Gregoriani cantus modulatio synodus provincialis attendens, valde
      optat, ut hanc artem omnes aemulatione pia exercere glorientur. Omnibus ergo
      paroehis praescribit ae mandat, ut sive per se sive per alios, ad rite cantandum
      et psallendum in eccIesia informent idoneos juvenes et erudiant .•
      4. Deer. 20, No 17 : c Parochi scholas eantorum instituere non negligant, ne, cum
      gravi religionis detrimento, officiorum divinorum sollemnitas, defectu cantoruIIi,
      imminuatur, aut etiam penitus evanescat. • CL 4, 479 b.

      Similar declarations were made by the provincial councils of Gran, Hungary in 1858 [1], Prague in 1860 [2], Cologne in 1863 [3], Cincinnati in 1861 [4], and that of Baltimore in 1866 [5].

      1. Tit. 4, Nos 2, 7 : « Singularia denique incrementa accedunt decori cultus divini ex
      harmonico cantu fidelium. Quocirca directores et inspectores scholarum hortatur
      Synodus, ut inter cetera institutionis religiosae objecta, cantus quoque ecclesiastici
      magnam habeant curam, quo sic in scholis nunc enutriti, et deinceps enutriendi,
      suavi hymnorum sacrorum modulatione et Deum glorificent, et ceteros, qui artem
      hanc minus calle rent, sensim excolant et aedificent .• CL 5, 33.

      2. Tit. 1, cap. 9:« Magnopere etiam proderit curare, ut pueri a teneris annis
      cant urn ecclesiasticum et rituum ac caeremoniarum formas ediscant, utque adoles-
      centes humanioribus litteris erudiendi, ecclesiasticas etiam disciplinas sapere
      incipiant .• CL 5, 429 d.

      3. Tit. 7, cap. 5:« Ad promovendam pietatem et dignius recolenda religionis
      mysteria, antiquissima jam aetate invaluit usus sub cuItu divino cantum adhi-
      bendi. Pia haec consuetudo communem devotionem efficaciter alit, mentem pia
      sensu rep let, in corde devotos affectus excitat, dogmata Ecclesiae memoriae
      fide Ii urn imprimit, et cultus divini majestatem auget. Quapropter agant pastores
      animarum, ut scholastica imprimis et adultior juventus in cantu ecclesiastico
      debito formetur. Cantica adhibeantur quae pietatis sensum non quaesitis ex-
      pressionibus, sed accommodatis dogmaticis terminis exprimunt. Modus canendi
      exquisitus, productus, abruptus, lassus ac singularis vitetur; anti qui canendi
      modi, in quantum ad pietatem animant, cum prisco devotionis sensu repristinen-
      tur. Liber ab Ordinario approbatus determinabit quae cantica sint adhibenda.
      Cantus vero profani in ecclesia nullo modo tolerentur .• CL 5, 720 c.

      4. III, No 1 : « Ut novi, ne dicamus profani, arceantur canendi modi a Dei templis,
      statuimus val de commendendam esse et ubicumque id possibile fuerit in usum
      deducendam, praxim tradendi in scholis parochialibus disciplinas Musicae Gre-
      gorianae, atque pueros instructos adhibendi in divinis officiis celebrandis •• CL
      3, 223/24.

      5. II, tit. 6, cap. 3, Nos 379, 380: « Vesperae integrae ut decantentur diebus domin-
      icis festisque in omnibus ecclesiis, more Ecclesiae Romanae, quatenus fieri potest,
      volumus et mandamus. Atque hae quidem nunquam omittendae sunt ob alia
      exercitia pietatis. Cultus enim solemnis Ecclesiae Pontificibus probatus et per
      tot saecula vigens Deo gratior censendus est. Ut autem hac in parte uniformitas
      habeatur, omnino in praxim generalem deducenda esse vol urn us, quae de Vesperis
      minus solemnibus et de Missa cantata sine Diacono et Subdiacono in Iibro Caere-
      moniali nuper Baltimore edito habentur; ideoque monemus sacerdotes, ut vel
      ipsi, vel per alium quemdam bene expertum, pueros caeremonias in Missis
      cantatis et Vesperis rIte peragendas diligenter doceant. Insuper valde exop-
      tandum esse censemus ut rudiment a cantus gregoriani in scholis parochialibus
      exponantur et exerceantur; sicque numero eo rum qui psalmos bene cant are
      valent, magis magisque increscente, paulatim major saltern pars populi, secundum
      primitivae Ecclesiae adhuc in variis locis vigentem usum, Vesperas et alia
      simiIia cum ministris et choro decantare addiscat. Qua ratione omnium aedificatio
      promovebitur, juxta iIIud sancti Pauli: Loquentes Vobis metipsis in psalmis et
      hymnis et canticis spiritualibus (Eph. 5, 19) .• CL 3, 50l/02

      The Council of Bordeaux in 1850 brought out the fact that it is precisely by the celebration of the solemn Latin mass and Latin vespers that the religious life is powerfully asserted; the entire congregation must be encouraged ceaselessly and by all means at hand to sing Gregorian chant in joy and with a single purpose [1]. As did the Introduction to the Motu proprio, the Council of Bordeaux of the year 1859 recognized the new ardor of religious life, but demanded that it extend to the practice of Gregorian chant. This chant was to be learned even in the smaller towns by the school children, in order that there might not be merely a single cantor, but the whole congregation to sing the Latin liturgical chants [2].

      1. Tit. 2, cap. 4, No.2: “Cum ex divinorum officiorum digna celebratione plurimum
      commendetur religio, foveatur pietas, ipsaque hominum excutiatur negligentia,
      vehementer improbamus parochos, qui de splendore cultus divini nihil vel parum
      curant Missamque ac Vesperas, quin gravis causa excuset, sine cantu expediunt.
      Volumus encontra, ut, quoad fieri poterit, pueros et choristas informent, qui
      caeremonias et cantum, cum maiori minorive solemnitate, pro festivatis ritu,
      omnibus diebus dominicis et festis, religiose ac laudabiliter exsequantur, necnon
      universus populus ad cantandum cum eis, voce aemula et unanimi, sollicitetur
      inciteturque omni modo.” CL 4, 561 b. In the second provincial Council of
      1853, this admonition was repeated: Cap. 2, IV, CL 4, 562 a.

      2. Tit 2, cap. 7: “Sanctus iIIe zelus, qui in laudem Dei nostris diebus exarsit, seu
      in reparandis templis ac de nove aedificandis, seu in investigandis eccIesiasticis
      antiquitatibus, et in omnibus quae ad Religionem pertinent in lucem proferendis,
      non foret plenus ac integer, nisi in divina psalmodia pro nostra cIericali portione
      eluceret.” CL 4, 754 c.-No. II: “IlIum quoque a scholarum primariarum
      alumnis edisci, qua melius fieri poterit, vehementer exoptamus, maxime in col-
      oniis, ubi uni saepe contori incumbit omnes officii partes decantare. Denique
      fideles omnes exhortamur, ut in divinis officiis Clericorum cantibus voces suas
      semper coniungant.” CL 4, 754 d.

      All of this shows what an obscurantist BIGOT you are in telling (as of day) no less than 78 sessions of your MALICIOUS LIES against congregational singing in the Divine Liturgy!

  2. M. Correia says:

    What luck to come across this blog! I spend a portion of the year in northern Portugal and have been trying to find out where I could attend this historic rite. So far no luck. If you are up to meeting sometime please get in touch: martinhoart@gmail.com. My blog: http://offthecoastofutopia.blogspot.pt
    Thank you for your work.

  3. Michael A says:

    Thank you so much, I dream of the day that the Braga Rite is said in Portugal regularly again. If only we had an “FSSP” for the Braga Rite.

  4. Juan Jeanniton says:

    My last post contains a slight error. What I meant to say is not “virtually EVERY diocese of the so-called Roman Catholic Church launched a MASSIVE HEROIC CRUSADE to restore congregational singing into the Holy Mass” but “virtually EVERY diocese of the Holy Mother Church … “. The weight of evidence is obviously and unanimously in favor of congregational singing in the Mass and in all other solemn liturgical functions, and therefore in favor of the proposition that congregational singing is indeed the time-honored UNIVERSAL continuous perpetual indefectible Tradition of the Holy Mother Church! What gives you the right as a Roman Catholic to set your own private judgment against the time-honored perpetual uniform customs of the church?

  5. Juan Jeanniton says:

    And, just as if the former malicious lies of yours against active participation at Mass had not been bad enough, your most recent session 76 on the Dialogue Mass claims that “active participation” = liturgical abuse, which grossly misrepresents the true position of your enemies. However, I am glad that you do acknowledge that “Their more conservative counterparts, however, insist that _actuosa_ means incorporating some traditional customs of genuflecting, making the sign of the Cross etc., with a dash of “dialogue” and congregational singing, plus the odd moment of silence for “contemplation.” The question is: Which of the two sides (if either) is in the right?” But there is a certain error that needs to be corrected: the correct Latin phrase for _ACTIVE_ PARTICIPATION is _ACTIVA_ PARTICIPATIO, not _ACTUOSA_ PARTICIPATIO!

    There is also another fallacy you commit: that of ignoring other relevant pieces of evidence. In Session 74, you say, that the very concept of active participation is a “phrase of dubious provenance”. I will now investigate the claims in your section entitled “A phrase of dubious provenance”.

    Claim #1: “It says something about the standards of reliability in the Liturgical Movement that everyone took it for granted that “actuosa participatio” came from the pen of Pius X, without making any serious effort to investigate the truth of the claim.”

    Answer: FALSE. In future, if God wills it, I will present a body of evidence showing that the very concept of “active participation” already came from genuine sources PREDATING Pius X. All such evidence can be found in Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology”, and it will give you all the evidence. If you press on this link, https://books.google.com/books?id=XBUJAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA78&lpg=PA78&dq=Again,+I+revert+to+the+wholesome+practice+of+referring+to+the+actual+German+hymn+books+before+me+on+my+table&source=bl&ots=4O7a1hOO-W&sig=KDDoOCMHHQpQooZLSQeFBdJeRvM&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiU_ceJ14XcAhURv1MKHRbdAsIQ6AEIKTAA#v=onepage&q&f=false:, it will take you there and show you the noble and heroic efforts that many Pontiffs in the 16th, 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries made to restore vernacular congregational singing in Italy during the Mass.

    Those sources are not only genuine in themselves (as opposed to being a product of forgeries) – they are official and authoritative – they are the authoritative voice of exactly the visible hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, and therefore have more weight than if they had been the mere product of unofficial lay private interpretation. The burden of proof is on you to show that those sources are forgeries!

    Claim #2: “True, the Italian version of Pius X’s 1903 _motu proprio_ contained the word _attiva_ (active) in connection with lay participation in the liturgy.”

    Answer: TRUE.

    Claim #3: “Nevertheless, the only authentic and authoritative document that faithfully reproduces his words is the Latin version” –

    Answer: IRRELEVANT. Either Pius X DID indeed write the Italian version first or else he wrote the Latin version first. If the Italian, then your claim #3 is a MALICIOUS LIE against the heroic virtues of this saintly Pontiff in restoring congregational singing to the laity. But if the Latin, well then, you are still ignoring evidence from some of the Popes themselves predating Pius X in their efforts to restore not just congregational singing, but vernacular congregational singing in the Holy Mass especially in Italy. All such evidence can be found in Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology”, and it will give you all the evidence.

    Claim #4: “an attentive reading of that document would show that the word _actuosa_ is entirely missing” –

    Answer: True, but IRRELEVANT! You are still ignoring other pieces of evidence, especially that of Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology”. You are not only making the fallacy of mistaking absence of evidence for proof of absence, but you are also committing the “One Single Proof” fallacy. This fallacy occurs when instead of accepting a preponderance of circumstantial evidence in favor of a given claim, one requests a single specific direct “smoking gun” proof; such a request presupposes that without some key specific piece of direct and apodictic evidence, the entire argument for the given claim will fall apart.

    Claim #5: “Like the dog in the Sherlock Holmes story (3) who _didn’t_ bark in the night, *it is the _absence_ of the epithet _actuosa_ that clinches the argument against the notion that Pius X intended lay people to perform parts of the liturgy.* No further evidence is needed to disprove the claim that Pius X used _actuosa_ in his Latin document.”

    Answer: FALSE and IRRELEVANT! Once again, you are _still_ committing the two fallacies firstly of mistaking Absence of Proof for Proof of Absence and secondly the ‘One Single Proof’ gambit! You are still ignoring other pieces of evidence predating Pius X that ‘active participation’ was not merely the personal wish of Pius X but of many other previous popes from the 16th to the 18th century who often authorized Italian vernacular books of hymns to be sung during solemn liturgical functions. And, you forget that even ‘actuosa’ is not the correct term for ‘active’ in Latin: the correct term for ‘active’ is ACTIVA! This term is found in the Italian version of the _Motu Proprio_ but not in the Latin version.

    Claim #6: “This is not an insignificant discrepancy between the two documents, for the equivalent of the word “active” in the Italian version would determine the outcome of the whole liturgical reform, whereas the Latin version simply preserved and fostered Tradition” –

    Answer: IRRELEVANT!!!!!! You are still mistaking Absence of Proof for Proof of Absence, persisting in the One Single Proof fallacy, because you are ignoring other sources which predate the time of Pius X and which show that many Popes from 16th to the 18th century approved many books of Italian vernacular hymns to be sung in solemn liturgical functions in Italy. You can find all this evidence in Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology”.

    Claim #7: “In fact, _actuosa participation_ was the dominant theme of the reform movement under Pius XII – it made its first appearance in his time – and also colored the outlook of many Bishops and priests of the pre-Vatican II generation. It influenced the creation of the Novus Ordo Mass in which the priest was reduced to being the “presider” over the rest of the assembly’s activities.”

    Answer: IRRELEVANT! The truth of the matter is that the concept which defines the very phrase “active participation” was already established for about 400 years and promoted by many “Roman Catholic” popes BEFORE Pius X.

    Claim #8: “Given that the “active” element was the guiding principle of the reform, it is highly implausible that the writer of the Latin version “forgot” to include _actuosa_ or thought it was to be simply taken for granted. It was not there because it was not meant to be there. And it was not meant to be there because it does not “fit” with the traditional _lex orandi_, being incompatible with the values and culture of Catholic worship.”

    Answer: FALSE and IRRELEVANT, because _Actuosa_ is not even the right word to describe the idea of “active participation”: the correct word is _active_. If “active participation” (congregational singing) is against the traditional LEX ORANDI of the “Roman Catholic” Church, well then, why is it that several popes within 400 years prior to the promulgation of Pius X’s Motu Proprio on church music, promoted the congregational singing of the people in the vernacular languages by approving many Italian books of “Catholic” vernacular hymns for use in the solemn liturgical functions (Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology” contains the evidence)?

    The Evidence that YOU have ignored!

    According to Mr. Gatty’s “Notes on Catholic Hymnology”,

    https://books.google.com/books?id=XBUJAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA78&lpg=PA78&dq=Again,+I+revert+to+the+wholesome+practice+of+referring+to+the+actual+German+hymn+books+before+me+on+my+table&source=bl&ots=4O7a1hOO-W&sig=KDDoOCMHHQpQooZLSQeFBdJeRvM&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiU_ceJ14XcAhURv1MKHRbdAsIQ6AEIKTAA#v=onepage&q&f=false:

    “Again, I revert to the wholesome practice of referring to the actual German hymn books before me on my table. First and foremost, there comes the “Katholisches Gesangund Gebetbuch” for the Apostolic Vicariat of Luxemburg, published in 1868, with an introductory letter from the Vicar Apostolic himself. This contains an arrangement of suitable vernacular hymns to be sung at certain points during the celebration of Mass, which are indicated over the tops of the hymns, such as “At the Gloria,” “At the Gospel,” “At the Credo,” “At the Offertory,” “At the Sanctus,” &c. Another example of exactly the same kind is the “Gesangund Gebetbuch” for the diocese of Trier, published in 1872, bearing a commendatory letter from the Bishop and the imprimatur of the Vicar-General. Now, more than 100 pages of this book are entirely occupied with vernacular hymns to be sung during Mass, arranged under nine separate “Messgesingen.” The same sort of selection is given in the “Cantate Domino!” for the diocese of Braunsberg published in 1885, also in Koenen’s diocesan hymnal for the diocese of Cologne published in 1881. One more example is the “Psalterlein” of Joseph Mohr, published at Regensburg in 1894, “mit oberhiztlicher approbation,” and bearing the imprimatur of the Vicar-General. This practical parochial prayer and hymn book contains nearly fifty pages of vernacular devotions and hymns to be used during the celebration of Mass.

    Now, surely these publications, issued in the various dioceses of Germany, with the authority of their Bishops and Vicars General, should make a Protestant author pause before he places on record in a standard English Dictionary of Hymnology the statement that in Germany “singing in the language of the people” is not permitted “in the celebration of the solemn Mass.” And “if such singing has sometimes occurred in country churches, it has been condemned by provincial councils.” I hope Dr. Julian will give us references to these condemnations, and let us see their scope and their date.’ This is just for GERMANY! Now let us see what efforts had been done in Italy:

    Further, I do not believe that the German Bishops and Councils commend vernacular hymnology on account of its “historic value,” nor that a jot or tittle of evidence can be given for this assumption. I do not believe that Italian hymnbooks are or have been used without “sanction from public authority,” except in rare instances; nor do I credit the assertion that the Roman Catholic Church “does not appear to favour” the singing of vernacular hymns in public worship [or rather, SOLEMN LITURGICAL FUNCTIONS as well as the more informal and social meetings]. I will take as an example a few of the hymn-books which lie before me on my table. First, there are four small volumes entitled “Scelta di Laudi Sacre,” published recently by the Para via Press in Turin, and widely used in North Italy, which are duly stamped “Con approvazione dell’Autorita Ecclesiastica.” Another is the “Salterio Popolare” of Father Pietro Paolo Balestra, who has enjoyed the warmest patronage from the Holy Father. This is stamped with the “Nihil Obstat” of the Vicar-General of Florence, dated October 8, 1878. Then there comes the “Sacre Canzoncine” of Father Giuseppe di Fusco, put forth, as he says on his title page, for use in the parish churches, “Con licenza de’ Superiori,” and published at Naples in 1731. And then come two Italian Hymn-books, apparently well known to Dr. Julian’s writer, the “Corona” of Coferati, and the “Canzonette” of Bernardo Adimari. He tells us that the first was printed with the permission of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, but why did he conceal the fact that it bore the approbation of the Holy Office and the Imprimatur of the Vicar General? And why did he not say that Adimari’s “Canzonette” had on its title page the words “Con licenza de’ Superiori”? Were these sanctions of public ecclesiastical authority suppressed in order to justify his statement that vernacular hymns in Italy “have no sanction from public authority”?

    Another example which lies before me is Emiddio Durelli’s Italian metrical translation of the Latin hymns and devotions, published with accompanying tunes at Naples in 1793. This work bears the following commendatory letter from Pope Pius VI.:

    To Our dear Son Emiddio Durelli, in Naples.
    Pius VI. Supreme Pontiff.

    BELOVED SON—Health and apostolic benediction. Your letters have been presented to Us, and an example of the sacred prayers which you have translated into Italian metre. We are delighted by the religious zeal by which you exercise your talent in the study of poetry, and strive to help those who are not skilled in the Latin tongue. Our goodwill towards you is such that bearing in mind your devotion towards Our person and Office, We desire strenuously to encourage you, wherever occasion may call for it. Meanwhile receive as a most certain pledge of Our paternal goodwill, beloved son, the Apostolic Blessing which We impart to you, your wife, and your children.
    Given in Rome at St. Peter’s, IV. Ides of January 1795, in the twentieth year of our Pontificate. Callisto Marino, Secretary of Latin letters to His Holiness.

    Such examples of the “sanction of public authority” as I have given, from various dates, are enough to show how utterly misleading are the facts in Dr. Julian’s Dictionary. Moreover, I can supplement these with a small library of Italian hymn-books dating from 1580 onwards, and I will venture to say that not one example in twenty is without an official Imprimatur.”

    Yet all these efforts on the part of the official authorities of the Roman Catholic Church over 100 years long BEFORE the Motu Proprio of Pius X seem to mean absolutely NOTHING to such elitists, obscurants and myrmidons of ecclesiastical tyranny like you! Your arguments are nothing but a CAVALIER DISMISSAL of all the evidence I gave to you!

    D.A. Carson defines the fallacy this:

    14. Cavalier dismissal: The fallacy in this instance lies in thinking that an opponent’s argument has actually been handled when in fact it has merely been written off. It may happen that an opposing opinion does not conform to a writer’s own ideas or ideals, however such a difference is not a licence to dismiss the opposing opinion. Instead, such a conflict should be stated and investigated to find its source.

  6. Br. Gregory says:

    Juan, if you have any issues with Dr. Byrne, my blog’s comment box is not the place for it. If I see one more such comment, I will delete all the previous ones.

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