Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy - Sacrosanctum concilium. Sacrosanctum Concilium. The Apostolic Constitution on the. Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council. Issued December 4, Mystery and the Enduring Value of Sacrosanctum Concilium. The promulgation of the Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium on the Sacred.

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Lecture Notes: Sacrosanctum Concilium As the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium was one of the most significant. Its formal name, Sacrosanctum Concilium, means this most holy council. Since this was the first document the bishops formally approved (on Dec. 4, ), the. Sacrosanctum Concilium, the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, is one of the constitutions of . Print/export. Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version.

Forgot password? Don't have an account? Attention is then turned to how these principles are brought to bear in the Eucharistic liturgy, in the Liturgy of the Hours, as also in connection with the Liturgical Year. Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or download to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter. Please, subscribe or login to access full text content. To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use for details see www. OSO version 0. University Press Scholarship Online. Sign in. Not registered? Sign up.

The regulation, however, of the discipline of con-celebration in the diocese pertains to the bishop. Nevertheless, each priest shall always retain his right to celebrate Mass individually, though not at the same time in the same church as a concelebrated Mass, nor on Thursday of the Lord's Supper.

A new rite for concelebration is to be drawn up and inserted into the Pontifical and into the Roman Missal. The purpose of the sacraments is to sanctify men, to build up the body of Christ, and, finally, to give worship to God; because they are signs they also instruct. They not only presuppose faith, but by words and objects they also nourish, strengthen, and express it; that is why they are called "sacraments of faith. It is therefore of the highest importance that the faithful should easily understand the sacramental signs, and should frequent with great eagerness those sacraments which were instituted to nourish the Christian life.

Holy Mother Church has, moreover, instituted sacramentals. These are sacred signs which bear a resemblance to the sacraments: By them men are disposed to receive the chief effect of the sacraments, and various occasions in life are rendered holy. Thus, for well-disposed members of the faithful, the liturgy of the sacraments and sacramentals sanctifies almost every event in their lives; they are given access to the stream of divine grace which flows from the paschal mystery of the passion, death, the resurrection of Christ, the font from which all sacraments and sacramentals draw their power.

There is hardly any proper use of material things which cannot thus be directed toward the sanctification of men and the praise of God. With the passage of time, however, there have crept into the rites of the sacraments and sacramentals certain features which have rendered their nature and purpose far from clear to the people of today; hence some changes have become necessary to adapt them to the needs of our own times.

For this reason the sacred Council decrees as follows concerning their revision. Because of the use of the mother tongue in the administration of the sacraments and sacramentals can often be of considerable help to the people, this use is to be extended according to the following norms:. These rituals, which are to be adapted, also as regards the language employed, to the needs of the different regions, are to be reviewed by the Apostolic See and then introduced into the regions for which they have been prepared.

But in drawing up these rituals or particular collections of rites, the instructions prefixed to the individual rites the Roman Ritual, whether they be pastoral and rubrical or whether they have special social import, shall not be omitted. The catechumenate for adults, comprising several distinct steps, is to be restored and to be taken into use at the discretion of the local ordinary.

By this, means the time of the catechumenate, which is intended as a period of suitable instruction, may be sanctified by sacred rites to be celebrated at successive intervals of time.

Sacrosanctum Concilium

In mission lands it is found that some of the peoples already make use of initiation rites. Elements from these, when capable of being adapted to Christian ritual, may be admitted along with those already found in Christian tradition, according to the norm laid down in Art.

Both the rites for the baptism of adults are to be revised: A special Mass "for the conferring of baptism" is to be inserted into the Roman Missal. The rite for the baptism of infants is to be revised, and it should be adapted to the circumstance that those to be baptized are, in fact, infants.

The roles of parents and godparents, and also their duties, should be brought out more clearly in the rite itself. The baptismal rite should contain variants, to be used at the discretion of the local ordinary, for occasions when a very large number are to be baptized together.

Moreover, a shorter rite is to be drawn up, especially for mission lands, to be used by catechists, but also by the faithful in general when there is danger of death, and neither priest nor deacon is available.

In place of the rite called the "Order of supplying what was omitted in the baptism of an infant," a new rite is to be drawn up. This should manifest more fittingly and clearly that the infant, baptized by the short rite, has already been received into the Church. And a new rite is to be drawn up for converts who have already been validly baptized; it should indicate that they are now admitted to communion with the Church.

Except during Eastertide, baptismal water may be blessed within the rite of baptism itself by an approved shorter formula. The rite of confirmation is to be revised and the intimate connection which this sacrament has with the whole of Christian initiation is to be more clearly set forth; for this reason it is fitting for candidates to renew their baptismal promises just before they are confirmed.

Confirmation may be given within the Mass when convenient; when it is given outside the Mass, the rite that is used should be introduced by a formula to be drawn up for this purpose. The rite and formulas for the sacrament of penance are to be revised so that they more clearly express both the nature and effect of the sacrament.

Hence, as soon as any one of the faithful begins to be in danger of death from sickness or old age, the fitting time for him to receive this sacrament has certainly already arrived. In addition to the separate rites for anointing of the sick and for viaticum, a continuous rite shall be prepared according to which the sick man is anointed after he has made his confession and before he receives viaticum.

The number of the anointings is to be adapted to the occasion, and the prayers which belong to the rite of anointing are to be revised so as to correspond with the varying conditions of the sick who receive the sacrament.

Both the ceremonies and texts of the ordination rites are to be revised. The address given by the bishop at the beginning of each ordination or consecration may be in the mother tongue. The marriage rite now found in the Roman Ritual is to be revised and enriched in such a way that the grace of the sacrament is more clearly signified and the duties of the spouses are taught.

Moreover the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned in Art. But the rite must always conform to the law that the priest assisting at the marriage must ask for and obtain the consent of the contracting parties. Matrimony is normally to be celebrated within the Mass, after the reading of the gospel and the homily, and before "the prayer of the faithful. But if the sacrament of matrimony is celebrated apart from Mass, the epistle and gospel from the nuptial Mass are to be read at the beginning of the rite, and the blessing should always be given to the spouses.

The sacramentals are to undergo a revision which takes into account the primary principle of enabling the faithful to participate intelligently, actively, and easily; the circumstances of our own days must also be considered. When rituals are revised, as laid down in Art. Let provision be made that some sacramentals, at least in special circumstances and at the discretion of the ordinary, may be administered by qualified lay persons. The rite for the consecration of virgins at present found in the Roman Pontifical is to be revised.

Moreover, a rite of religious profession and renewal of vows shall be drawn up in order to achieve greater unity, sobriety, and dignity. Apart from exceptions in particular law, this rite should be adopted by those who make their profession or renewal of vows within the Mass. The rite for the burial of the dead should express more clearly the paschal character of Christian death, and should correspond more closely to the circumstances and traditions found in various regions.

This holds good also for the liturgical color to be used.

The rite for the burial of infants is to be revised, and a special Mass for the occasion should be provided. Christ Jesus, high priest of the new and eternal covenant, taking human nature, introduced into this earthly exile that hymn which is sung throughout all ages in the halls of heaven.

He joins the entire community of mankind to Himself, associating it with His own singing of this canticle of divine praise. For he continues His priestly work through the agency of His Church, which is ceaselessly engaged in praising the Lord and interceding for the salvation of the whole world. She does this, not only by celebrating the eucharist, but also in other ways, especially by praying the divine office. By tradition going back to early Christian times, the divine office is devised so that the whole course of the day and night is made holy by the praises of God.

Therefore, when this wonderful song of praise is rightly performed by priests and others who are deputed for this purpose by the Church's ordinance, or by the faithful praying together with the priest in the approved form, then it is truly the voice of the bride addressed to her bridegroom; It is the very prayer which Christ Himself, together with His body, addresses to the Father.

Hence all who render this service are not only fulfilling a duty of the Church, but also are sharing in the greatest honor of Christ's spouse, for by offering these praises to God they are standing before God's throne in the name of the Church their Mother. Priests who are engaged in the sacred pastoral ministry will offer the praises of the hours with greater fervor the more vividly they realize that they must heed St.

Paul's exhortation: For the work in which they labor will effect nothing and bring forth no fruit except by the power of the Lord who said: That is why the apostles, instituting deacons, said: In order that the divine office may be better and more perfectly prayed in existing circumstances, whether by priests or by other members of the Church, the sacred Council, carrying further the restoration already so happily begun by the Apostolic See, has seen fit to decree as follows concerning the office of the Roman rite.

Because the purpose of the office is to sanctify the day, the traditional sequence of the hours is to be restored so that once again they may be genuinely related to the time of the day when they are prayed, as far as this may be possible. Moreover, it will be necessary to take into account the modern conditions in which daily life has to be lived, especially by those who are called to labor in apostolic works.

But outside choir it will be lawful to select any one of these three, according to the respective time of the day. The divine office, because it is the public prayer of the Church, is a source of piety, and nourishment for personal prayer.

And therefore priests and all others who take part in the divine office are earnestly exhorted in the Lord to attune their minds to their voices when praying it. The better to achieve this, let them take steps to improve their understanding of the liturgy and of the bible, especially of the psalms. In revising the Roman office, its ancient and venerable treasures are to be so adapted that all those to whom they are handed on may more extensively and easily draw profit from them.

So that it may really be possible in practice to observe the course of the hours proposed in Art. The work of revising the psalter, already happily begun, is to be finished as soon as possible, and is to take into account the style of Christian Latin, the liturgical use of psalms, also when sung, and the entire tradition of the Latin Church.

As regards the readings, the following shall be observed: To whatever extent may seem desirable, the hymns are to be restored to their original form, and whatever smacks of mythology or ill accords with Christian piety is to be removed or changed. Also, as occasion may arise, let other selections from the treasury of hymns be incorporated. That the day may be truly sanctified, and that the hours themselves may be recited with spiritual advantage, it is best that each of them be prayed at a time which most closely corresponds with its true canonical time.

Communities obliged to choral office are bound to celebrate the office in choir every day in addition to the conventual Mass. In particular:. Clerics not bound to office in choir, if they are in major orders, are bound to pray the entire office every day, either in common or individually, as laid down in Art.

Appropriate instances are to be defined by the rubrics in which a liturgical service may be substituted for the divine office.

In particular cases, and for a just reason, ordinaries can dispense their subjects wholly or in part from the obligation of reciting the divine office, or may commute the obligation. Members of any institute dedicated to acquiring perfection who, according to their constitutions, are to recite any parts of the divine office are thereby performing the public prayer of the Church.

They too perform the public prayer of the Church who, in virtue of their constitutions, recite any short office, provided this is drawn up after the pattern of the divine office and is duly approved. Since the divine office is the voice of the Church, that is of the whole mystical body publicly praising God, those clerics who are not obliged to office in choir, especially priests who live together or who assemble for any purpose, are urged to pray at least some part of the divine office in common.

All who pray the divine office, whether in choir or in common, should fulfill the task entrusted to them as perfectly as possible: Pastors of souls should see to it that the chief hours, especially Vespers, are celebrated in common in church on Sundays and the more solemn feasts.

And the laity, too, are encouraged to recite the divine office, either with the priests, or among themselves, or even individually.

In accordance with the centuries-old tradition of the Latin rite, the Latin language is to be retained by clerics in the divine office. But in individual cases the ordinary has the power of granting the use of a vernacular translation to those clerics for whom the use of Latin constitutes a grave obstacle to their praying the office properly. The vernacular version, however, must be one that is drawn up according to the provision of Art.

The competent superior has the power to grant the use of the vernacular in the celebration of the divine office, even in choir, to nuns and to members of institutes dedicated to acquiring perfection, both men who are not clerics and women. The version, however, must be one that is approved. Any cleric bound to the divine office fulfills his obligation if he prays the office in the vernacular together with a group of the faithful or with those mentioned in 52 above provided that the text of the translation is approved.

Holy Mother Church is conscious that she must celebrate the saving work of her divine Spouse by devoutly recalling it on certain days throughout the course of the year. Every week, on the day which she has called the Lord's day, she keeps the memory of the Lord's resurrection, which she also celebrates once in the year, together with His blessed passion, in the most solemn festival of Easter.

Within the cycle of a year, moreover, she unfolds the whole mystery of Christ, from the incarnation and birth until the ascension, the day of Pentecost, and the expectation of blessed hope and of the coming of the Lord. Recalling thus the mysteries of redemption, the Church opens to the faithful the riches of her Lord's powers and merits, so that these are in some way made present for all time, and the faithful are enabled to lay hold upon them and become filled with saving grace.

In celebrating this annual cycle of Christ's mysteries, holy Church honors with especial love the Blessed Mary, Mother of God, who is joined by an inseparable bond to the saving work of her Son. In her the Church holds up and admires the most excellent fruit of the redemption, and joyfully contemplates, as in a faultless image, that which she herself desires and hopes wholly to be.

The Church has also included in the annual cycle days devoted to the memory of the martyrs and the other saints. Raised up to perfection by the manifold grace of God, and already in possession of eternal salvation, they sing God's perfect praise in heaven and offer prayers for us. By celebrating the passage of these saints from earth to heaven the Church proclaims the paschal mystery achieved in the saints who have suffered and been glorified with Christ; she proposes them to the faithful as examples drawing all to the Father through Christ, and through their merits she pleads for God's favors.

Finally, in the various seasons of the year and according to her traditional discipline, the Church completes the formation of the faithful by means of pious practices for soul and body, by instruction, prayer, and works of penance and of mercy. By a tradition handed down from the apostles which took its origin from the very day of Christ's resurrection, the Church celebrates the paschal mystery every eighth day; with good reason this, then, bears the name of the Lord's day or Sunday.

For on this day Christ's faithful are bound to come together into one place so that; by hearing the word of God and taking part in the eucharist, they may call to mind the passion, the resurrection and the glorification of the Lord Jesus, and may thank God who "has begotten them again, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, unto a living hope" 1 Pet.

Hence the Lord's day is the original feast day, and it should be proposed to the piety of the faithful and taught to them so that it may become in fact a day of joy and of freedom from work.

Other celebrations, unless they be truly of greatest importance, shall not have precedence over the Sunday which is the foundation and kernel of the whole liturgical year. The liturgical year is to be revised so that the traditional customs and discipline of the sacred seasons shall be preserved or restored to suit the conditions of modern times; their specific character is to be retained, so that they duly nourish the piety of the faithful who celebrate the mysteries of Christian redemption, and above all the paschal mystery.

If certain adaptations are considered necessary on account of local conditions, they are to be made in accordance with the provisions of Art. The minds of the faithful must be directed primarily toward the feasts of the Lord whereby the mysteries of salvation are celebrated in the course of the year. Therefore, the proper of the time shall be given the preference which is its due over the feasts of the saints, so that the entire cycle of the mysteries of salvation may be suitably recalled.

The season of Lent has a twofold character: This twofold character is to be brought into greater prominence both in the liturgy and by liturgical catechesis. As regards instruction it is important to impress on the minds of the faithful not only a social consequences of sin but also that essence of the virtue of penance which leads to the detestation of sin as an offence against God; the role of the Church in penitential practices is not to be passed over, and the people must be exhorted to pray for sinners.

During Lent penance should not be only internal and individual, but also external and social. The practice of penance should be fostered in ways that are possible in our own times and in different regions, and according to the circumstances of the faithful; it should be encouraged by the authorities mentioned in Art.

Nevertheless, let the paschal fast be kept sacred. Let it be celebrated everywhere on Good Friday and, where possible, prolonged throughout Holy Saturday, so that the joys of the Sunday of the resurrection may be attained with uplifted and clear mind. The saints have been traditionally honored in the Church and their authentic relics and images held in veneration.

For the feasts of the saints proclaim the wonderful works of Christ in His servants, and display to the faithful fitting examples for their imitation. Lest the feasts of the saints should take precedence over the feasts which commemorate the very mysteries of salvation, many of them should be left to be celebrated by a particular Church or nation or family of religious; only those should be extended to the universal Church which commemorate saints who are truly of universal importance.

The musical tradition of the universal Church is a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than that of any other art. The main reason for this pre-eminence is that, as sacred song united to the words, it forms a necessary or integral part of the solemn liturgy. Holy Scripture, indeed, has bestowed praise upon sacred song [ 42 ], and the same may be said of the fathers of the Church and of the Roman pontiffs who in recent times, led by St.

Pius X, have explained more precisely the ministerial function supplied by sacred music in the service of the Lord. Therefore sacred music is to be considered the more holy in proportion as it is more closely connected with the liturgical action, whether it adds delight to prayer, fosters unity of minds, or confers greater solemnity upon the sacred rites. But the Church approves of all forms of true art having the needed qualities, and admits them into divine worship.

Accordingly, the sacred Council, keeping to the norms and precepts of ecclesiastical tradition and discipline, and having regard to the purpose of sacred music, which is the glory of God and the sanctification of the faithful, decrees as follows.

Liturgical worship is given a more noble form when the divine offices are celebrated solemnly in song, with the assistance of sacred ministers and the active participation of the people. As regards the language to be used, the provisions of Art. The treasure of sacred music is to be preserved and fostered with great care. Choirs must be diligently promoted, especially in cathedral churches; but bishops and other pastors of souls must be at pains to ensure that, whenever the sacred action is to be celebrated with song, the whole body of the faithful may be able to contribute that active participation which is rightly theirs, as laid down in Art.

Sacrosanctum Concilium

Great importance is to be attached to the teaching and practice of music in seminaries, in the novitiates and houses of study of religious of both sexes, and also in other Catholic institutions and schools. To impart this instruction, teachers are to be carefully trained and put in charge of the teaching of sacred music. The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: But other kinds of sacred music, especially polyphony, are by no means excluded from liturgical celebrations, so long as they accord with the spirit of the liturgical action, as laid down in Art.

The typical edition of the books of Gregorian chant is to be completed; and a more critical edition is to be prepared of those books already published since the restoration by St.

Pius X. It is desirable also that an edition be prepared containing simpler melodies, for use in small churches. Religious singing by the people is to be intelligently fostered so that in devotions and sacred exercises, as also during liturgical services, the voices of the faithful may ring out according to the norms and requirements of the rubrics. In certain parts of the world, especially mission lands, there are peoples who have their own musical traditions, and these play a great part in their religious and social life.

For this reason due importance is to be attached to their music, and a suitable place is to be given to it, not only in forming their attitude toward religion, but also in adapting worship to their native genius, as indicated in Art. Therefore, when missionaries are being given training in music, every effort should be made to see that they become competent in promoting the traditional music of these peoples, both in schools and in sacred services, as far as may be practicable.

In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man's mind to God and to higher things. But other instruments also may be admitted for use in divine worship, with the knowledge and consent of the competent territorial authority, as laid down in Art. This may be done, however, only on condition that the instruments are suitable, or can be made suitable, for sacred use, accord with the dignity of the temple, and truly contribute to the edification of the faithful.

Composers, filled with the Christian spirit, should feel that their vocation is to cultivate sacred music and increase its store of treasures. Let them produce compositions which have the qualities proper to genuine sacred music, not confining themselves to works which can be sung only by large choirs, but providing also for the needs of small choirs and for the active participation of the entire assembly of the faithful.

The texts intended to be sung must always be in conformity with Catholic doctrine; indeed they should be drawn chiefly from holy scripture and from liturgical sources. Very rightly the fine arts are considered to rank among the noblest activities of man's genius, and this applies especially to religious art and to its highest achievement, which is sacred art.

These arts, by their very nature, are oriented toward the infinite beauty of God which they attempt in some way to portray by the work of human hands; they achieve their purpose of redounding to God's praise and glory in proportion as they are directed the more exclusively to the single aim of turning men's minds devoutly toward God.

Holy Mother Church has therefore always been the friend of the fine arts and has ever sought their noble help, with the special aim that all things set apart for use in divine worship should be truly worthy, becoming, and beautiful, signs and symbols of the supernatural world, and for this purpose she has trained artists. In fact, the Church has, with good reason, always reserved to herself the right to pass judgment upon the arts, deciding which of the works of artists are in accordance with faith, piety, and cherished traditional laws, and thereby fitted for sacred use.

The Church has been particularly careful to see that sacred furnishings should worthily and beautifully serve the dignity of worship, and has admitted changes in materials, style, or ornamentation prompted by the progress of the technical arts with the passage of time.

The Church has not adopted any particular style of art as her very own; she has admitted styles from every period according to the natural talents and circumstances of peoples, and the needs of the various rites. Thus, in the course of the centuries, she has brought into being a treasury of art which must be very carefully preserved. The art of our own days, coming from every race and region, shall also be given free scope in the Church, provided that it adorns the sacred buildings and holy rites with due reverence and honor; thereby it is enabled to contribute its own voice to that wonderful chorus of praise in honor of the Catholic faith sung by great men in times gone by.

Ordinaries, by the encouragement and favor they show to art which is truly sacred, should strive after noble beauty rather than mere sumptuous display. This principle is to apply also in the matter of sacred vestments and ornaments. Let bishops carefully remove from the house of God and from other sacred places those works of artists which are repugnant to faith, morals, and Christian piety, and which offend true religious sense either by depraved forms or by lack of artistic worth, mediocrity and pretense.

And when churches are to be built, let great care be taken that they be suitable for the celebration of liturgical services and for the active participation of the faithful. The practice of placing sacred images in churches so that they may be venerated by the faithful is to be maintained.

Nevertheless their number should be moderate and their relative positions should reflect right order. For otherwise they may create confusion among the Christian people and foster devotion of doubtful orthodoxy.

When passing judgment on works of art, local ordinaries shall give a hearing to the diocesan commission on sacred art and, if needed, also to others who are especially expert, and to the commissions referred to in Art.

Ordinaries must be very careful to see that sacred furnishings and works of value are not disposed of or dispersed; for they are the ornaments of the house of God. Bishops should have a special concern for artists, so as to imbue them with the spirit of sacred art and of the sacred liturgy. This they may do in person or through suitable priests who are gifted with a knowledge and love of art. It is also desirable that schools or academies of sacred art should be founded in those parts of the world where they would be useful, so that artists may be trained.

All artists who, prompted by their talents, desire to serve God's glory in holy Church, should ever bear in mind that they are engaged in a kind of sacred imitation of God the Creator, and are concerned with works destined to be used in Catholic worship, to edify the faithful, and to foster their piety and their religious formation. Along with the revision of the liturgical books, as laid down in Art. These laws refer especially to the worthy and well planned construction of sacred buildings, the shape and construction of altars, the nobility, placing, and safety of the eucharistic tabernacle, the dignity and suitability of the baptistery, the proper ordering of sacred images, embellishments, and vestments.

Laws which seem less suited to the reformed liturgy are to be brought into harmony with it, or else abolished; and any which are helpful are to be retained if already in use, or introduced where they are lacking. According to the norm of Art. During their philosophical and theological studies, clerics are to be taught about the history and development of sacred art, and about the sound principles governing the production of its works.

In consequence they will be able to appreciate and preserve the Church's venerable monuments, and be in a position to aid, by good advice, artists who are engaged in producing works of art.

It is fitting that the use of pontificals be reserved to those ecclesiastical persons who have episcopal rank or some particular jurisdiction. The Second Ecumenical Sacred Council of the Vatican, recognizing the importance of the wishes expressed by many concerning the assignment of the feast of Easter to a fixed Sunday and concerning an unchanging calendar, having carefully considered the effects which could result from the introduction of a new calendar, declares as follows:. But among the various systems which are being suggested to stabilize a perpetual calendar and to introduce it into civil life, the Church has no objection only in the case of those systems which retain and safeguard a seven-day week with Sunday, without the introduction of any days outside the week, so that the succession of weeks may be left intact, unless there is question of the most serious reasons.

Concerning these the Apostolic See shall judge. Ignatius of Antioch, To the Ephesians , 7, 2. Mohlberg , n. Augustine, Tractatus in Ioannem , VI, n. John Cyprian, On the Unity of the Cathotic Church , 7; cf. Letter 66 , n. Migne, Patrologia Graeca, 74, Doctrine on Communion under Both Species , chap. Condlium Tridentinum. Diariorum, Actorum, Epistolarum , Tractatuum nova collectio ed.

The rite of the Mass is to be revised in such a way that the intrinsic nature and purpose of its several parts, as also the connection between them, may be more clearly manifested, and that devout and active participation by the faithful may be more easily achieved.

For this purpose the rites are to be simplified, due care being taken to preserve their substance; elements which, with the passage of time, came to be duplicated, or were added with but little advantage, are now to be discarded; other elements which have suffered injury through accidents of history are now to be restored to the vigour which they had in the days of the holy Fathers, as may seem useful or necessary.

Dominican Publications and Newtown AL: But how are we to interpret these provisions according to the mind of the Council? I propose three hermeneutic keys. Article Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites. But since the use of the mother tongue, whether in the Mass, the administration of the sacraments, or other parts of the liturgy, frequently may be of great advantage to the people, the limits of its employment may be extended.

This will apply in the first place to the readings and directives, and to some of the prayers and chants, according to the regulations on this matter to be laid down separately in subsequent chapters. These norms being observed, it is for the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned in Art.

Sacrosanctum Concilium - Wikipedia

And, whenever it seems to be called for, this authority is to consult with bishops of neighbouring regions which have the same language. Translations from the Latin text into the mother tongue intended for use in the liturgy must be approved by the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned above.

The fundamental principle for the reform of liturgical rites given in chapter I is found in article That sound tradition may be retained, and yet the way remain open to legitimate progress, careful investigation is always to be made into each part of the liturgy which is to be revised.

This investigation should be theological, historical, and pastoral. Also the general laws governing the structure and meaning of the liturgy must be studied in conjunction with the experience derived from recent liturgical reforms and from the indults conceded to various places.

Finally, there must be no innovations unless the good of the Church genuinely and certainly requires them; and care must be taken that any new forms adopted should in some way grow organically from forms already existing. A comprehensive exegesis of this crucial paragraph of Sacrosanctum concilium is beyond our scope here. An authoritative commentary on the constitution published in , the English edition of which credits Bugnini as one its editors, confirms the essentially conservative intention of this article.

In it Monsignor Salvator Famoso, chancellor of the diocese of Catania and a consultor to the Preparatory Conciliar Commission and to the post-conciliar Consilium, writes: Reforms should correspond to the traditional laws of the structure and mind of the Liturgy.

They should flow organically from the forms or rites which already exist, lest they be so different from present forms that they resemble new creations…. Constitutio de sacra liturgia Sacrosanctum concilium Vatican City: Vatican Press, Sacrosanctum concilium and the Ordo Missae venerated and used for centuries by our forefathers be needlessly rejected or the Sacred Liturgy be treated as if it were merely a field for experimentation.

Of article 23 he writes: In article 23 the ideals which must serve as a norm for the reform of the Liturgy were described. They are the same which had been held by all prudent supporters of the cause of liturgical revival.

The reform of the Liturgy cannot be a revolution. It must try to grasp the real meaning and the basic structure of the traditional rites and, making prudent use of existing deposits, build on them organically in the direction indicated by the pastoral needs of a living liturgy.

In the light of this, the observations of the same contemporary and informed commentaries on article 50 provide the second hermeneutic key to unlocking its meaning.

Father Theodore Schnitzler, one of the consultors for the post-conciliar Consilium, writes in the commentary edited by Bugnini on article The entire structure of the Mass is to be revised.

The following rules are laid down for this revision: Benzinger, Herbert Vorgrimler New York: Herder, It can be brought out by proclaiming the lessons in a read Mass facing the people to whom they are addressed, as is done at solemn Mass, or by revising the prayers which accompany the offering so as to make more evident that this is an offering of gifts later to be consecrated, or by separating parts which are now intertwined, for example the embolism, the fraction, the kiss of peace, the commixtion.

As to 1 b the mutual connection of the parts can be brought out more clearly, for example, by shortening and simplifying the prayers at the foot of the altar, which overshadow the Introit. As for 2, the participation of the faithful can be facilitated, for example, by adding the prayer of the faithful, or by restoring the procession of the offertory, at least on more solemn days, perhaps using the ceremony in the Ambrosian liturgy; or by pronouncing the principal prayers of the Canon, at least the final doxology aloud, so that the people may be able to answer Amen.

In the second part of the paragraph, the Council lays down further rules…. This seems to refer to ceremonies such as genuflections, signs of the cross, etc. The omission of duplications and less useful additions. For example, the Amens in the Canon and the silent recitation of what is chanted by the choir. The restoration of certain things which have fallen out of use, e. Sacrosanctum concilium and the Ordo Missae but certainly the state of studies at the time did not allow this desire to be fulfilled.

The first is that practically all of the reforms that he envisages, save perhaps the replacement of the offertory prayers, were discussed by scholars and others involved in the Liturgical Movement throughout at least the previous decade. As we shall see below, they were specifically foreshadowed by the Fathers of the Council in their consideration of article French Bishop Henri Jenny, however, a member of the Prepara- tory and Conciliar Commissions on the Liturgy and later of the Consilium , speaking in the aula that same morning and but five Fathers later, responded to the anxiety of some Fathers in relation to the reform of the Ordo Missae with an intervention setting out the content of the declarationes.

Jungmann observes: It was seen that these declarationes had principally in mind simplifications at the beginning and end of Mass, reductions of the signs of the Cross and genuflections , an improved order at the Offertory and Fraction, reading aloud of the Secret Prayer, concluding part of the Canon and the Embolism, enriching of the Prefaces.

What follows, of course, is the list of specifically envisaged reforms. I am grateful to Fr Brian Harrison o. Sacrosanctum concilium and the Ordo Missae sentence the voice of article 23 of the constitution with its insistence on continuity and organic development in the liturgical reform.

I submit, then, that the intentions of Sacrosanctum concilium for the reform of the Ordo Missae may clearly be seen in the reading of articles 50 and 23 of the constitution cited above, particularly in the light of the opening sentence of the declarationes, which cannot but have served to calm the anxieties of some of the Fathers.

The content of the declarationes themselves must be read in its light.

The sentence bears repeating: Seemingly even Bugnini agreed, writing in March In a future revision, the rite of Mass could perhaps undergo some marginal change, but in substance the ages have created a functionally perfect rite.

It is consonant with every attitude of the human spirit and it worthily contains and proclaims the mystery. This is certainly consonant with what we have seen above in respect to articles 50 and 23 of the constitution. It appears that this article was published only in English.

The schemata detail the activity and proposals of study group 10 between April and May , and they make fascinating read- ing, for they detail what was proposed behind the scenes — when and by whom — in the work that produced the Ordo Missae promulgated by Pope Paul VI in It is impossible to study adequately their almost four hundred pages here.

This Ordo omits Psalm 42 and the Adjutorium nostrum and its response. It instructs the celebrant not to recite privately the introit, Kyrie, or Gloria should they be sung. A sign of the cross is not made at the end of the Gloria.

In public Masses, after kissing the altar or incensing it the celebrant may go to the sedilia. Centro Liturgico Vincenziano, Ritus servandus in celebratione Missae et de defectibus in celebratione Missae, typical edition Vatican City: Vatican Press, p. Sacrosanctum concilium and the Ordo Missae not kiss the altar before the Collect, which is prayed at the sedilia. Otherwise the introductory rites are left as they were.

The subdeacon or lector is instructed to face the people when singing or reading the lesson. At a non-sung Mass, a deacon or another priest is permitted to read the Gospel. The celebrant blesses incense whilst seated and then stands to bless the deacon.

At the end of the Gospel, the celebrant kisses the book brought by the deacon, but is not incensed. Again, the celebrant does not read privately the texts of the chants if they are sung or read by another minister. At private Masses, the rites accord with those previously in use. After the homily, the Credo is begun at the altar or the sedilia and is not recited privately at public Masses.

A bow is required during the words Et incarnatus est, and there is no sign of the cross at the end. The prayer of the faithful follows the Oremus before the offertory. The offertory prayers are untouched save that the Orate fratres and the prayer Super oblata are to be audible. The paten is not given to the subdeacon. The Sanctus is not said privately, and a sign of the cross is not made at its conclusion.

The Canon, which retains its signs of the cross and genuflections intact, is said silently, but the Per ipsum is sung or said audibly so that the people may respond Amen. The people may join the celebrant in the Pater noster, at the end of which there is no Amen.

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