Some reasons I prefer the kind of Church the traditional Latin Mass suggests to the kind of Church that—to my eye—appears to have come out of Vatican II:
- In general, the LM Church accepts the limitations of this world and orients itself toward transcendence. The post-V2 Church strives for God—the unlimited—in this world, and in visible ways.
- The post-V2 Church therefore does things—holds rallies, marches around, participates in social movements, provides services, develops enthusiasms and whatnot—and tends to view its action as the action of God in this world. The LM Church is more contemplative and humble, and more likely to view what it does as preparatory.
- The LM Church wants to stay in touch with what is and has been, and let the new arise of itself: “The Kingdom of God cometh not with observation” [Luke 17:20-21] might be its motto. The post-V2 Church wants to make things new in a very direct and this-worldly sense, through the actions of hierarchs, administrators, experts, committees, activists, congresses, and so. So we get a new mass, catechesis, architecture, rosary, religious life and what not else, all put together by people who can prove they know better.
The question, though, is why it is so important for the people who are around now to control everything. What’s the problem with leaving something alone? If we know everything and can do everything, why do we need God? The idea seems to be that if we didn’t do it, it isn’t real. There’s an aspect of modern thought that points in that direction, but is it one the Church should buy into? All in all, the traditional Latin Mass symbolizes to me a much saner and sounder understanding of the world, and the relation of man, God and Church, than the dominant tendencies of the last 40 years.
The rumors that Rome make allow much greater availability of the old Mass are getting more concrete. Inside the Vatican says they’ve interviewed Cardinal Arinze on the subject and he’s confirmed it!