At first I have to thank you for your answer and all the other postings from you which was basically the only reason why I decided to join this discussion.
Ah, no need to thank me, though I have to admit a sort of glee in seeing that people are reading what I post (however long-winded and arcane it may be). Thank you for engaging in this exchange with me. I'm relieved that I don't have to talk to myself in this thread (H1: "Isn't that right Hobble?" -- H2: "Sure as sure-gar!"").
The question for me remains why there was any need for a new translation, when the Gallican psalter had such a long and beautiful tradition in the Church, written by a Saint – and especially in the light of Christian revelation. Apart from poetical difficulties, difficulties to sing it (this was told to me by a Gregorianist, personally I am not competent to judge that) it also weakens e.g. the messianic message of the psalter.
I can write a couple of observations and impressions that years of reading commentaries on the reformed Roman Breviary (that is, from 1911 to 1955) have given me, but I would need to cite those sources in order to more efficiently address your point [in a very non-polemical way].
I would just like to write at this point that many present day clerics and layfolk cannot understand what a novelty the reformed Roman Psalter of Pope St. Pius X really was to the Priests and Religious of that age. Priests and Religious were reciting or chanting Psalms that had rarely occurred in the old Office, reformed up until the end of Pope Leo XIII's reign (the exceptions were those Monastic Orders who adhered to the Psalter as arranged in the Holy Rule of St. Benedict, which is now the most ancient Psalter in the Latin Occident). There was a mass of literature that exploded out into the libraries of Priests and Religious in the first half of the 20th century following the reforms of St. Pius X that commented upon the Psalms and the Canticles, and this reflected a desire on the part of these readers to know about the Psalms and Canticles, more of which they were reciting or chanting thanks to St. Pius X.
The New Translation was a response to such a desire, and the Motu Proprio which promulgated it makes that clear. However, I do agree [and contemporaneous commentators did too] that the New Translation was not so much ad libitum
as the Motu Proprio said. The new formularies employed the texts thereof, and the rubrics for the Restored Order of Holy Week implied that the New Translation ought to be used. However, the Restored Order of Holy Week as adapted to the Monastic Rite did retain the sacred Vulgate Psalter.
By the way, I don't like the use of the term "New Psalter" when applied to the New Latin Translation promulgated by Pope Pius XII because it was the term specifically used by rubricists when discussing the New Psalter of Pope St. Pius X. For example, there is a book entitled, The New Psalter with Interverse Translation
, compiled by Rev. Father E. P. Graham and published in 1935. The reference is to the recently (and indeed very new
) Psalter of 1911. [It is an awesome book, by the way, and I highly recommend it for anyone who yearns to learn the Psalms or to learn Latin: http://www.churchlatin.com/Books.aspx?BookID=84
I am sorry if I sounded uncharitable.
Thanks for explaining what you meant. I understand now why you said that. While I agree with the factual information, I ultimately disagree with your conclusion. The CMRI Priests may not be speculative theologians according to the criterion of Bp. Sanborn, but they [or at least those Priests whom I have known personally] have shown a love and zeal for souls that is just breath-taking. And this is an understatement.
I personally prefer a Priest who needs to review Matters Liturgical
before every High Mass but who will leave the rectory to drive unknown hours to distant destinations the minute someone from afar calls for his assistance, than one who knows by heart the entire Ritus servandus
, the liturgical treastises of Rev. Fr. Calleweart, the entire Rituale and Pontificale, but who would not move one finger for a soul who is "expendable" in his distorted estimation. The Low Mass of the former is far more edifying for me than even a Solemn High Mass coram Sanctissimo
of the latter. Faith and the sacred Liturgy that expresses it, in my opinion, are not museum pieces or archeological curiosities, rubricated theatre transfigured amidst Gregorian melodies, but grace that vivifies even through the most humble of instrumentalities.
The deeper reasons behind that is in my opinion an exaggerated infallibilism and a kind of neo-Ultramontanism spoken of by Pere Le Floch, Emmanuel Barbier and a few others seeing the bad effects of this movement of the 19th century. I already referred to that in my last post. While I think that the SSPX takes a position close to Gallicanism, most sedevacantist take the other extreme.
I am not versed at all in French, so I cannot read the book you mentioned in your previous reply, not these authors' books. However, this is another issue, though ultimately pertinent to liturgical questions.
Please don´t get me wrong, I don´t want to attack the CMRI, their position or the use of the Pius XII. liturgy. I just think it always boils down for every priest and every group to the question whom and what they like or not.
Thanks for clarifying this. From the impression I have received from conversations with the CMRI Priests, they don't like the reforms in themselves so much as the idea that they are attempting to selflessly obey the directives of Congregation of Sacred Rites, whose authority is that of the Supreme Pontiff when it comes to such questions.
I think some of them would have liked it [that is, with a subjective emotional sympathy] if they could use the older typical editions of the liturgical books, but their scruples and sense of obedience would forbid such a thing.
All of the Priests with whom I have spoken do not seem to condemn their fellow clerics who use the older books. They recognize that it's all confusing right now, and one does as best they can.
After years of fighting on this liturgical question I am pretty much giving up: Really, I think it is the last thing we have to worry about. And because of my own deficiencies I cannot really supply the answers and arguments you are looking for.
Oh, I am not looking for arguments or answers. I am sorry if I sound polemical or argumentative [in the negative sense of the word]. I just wanted to clarify something for future reference in case we do engage in future exchanges regarding these questions.
I too am quite tired by polemics amongst traditionalists [regarding this question and most others]. After years of academic training in a secular university and minors colleges, I have learned to hold my convictions whilst lending a kind ear to the opinions of others, being cognizant that I have no authority or competence of mine own to invoke (especially in sacred matters). I'm only human [Deo gratias], and have not been given a station superior to my fellow neighbor [iterum Deo gratias].
I hope not disappoint you too much and I certainly mean no offense against anybody.
Nah, you haven't disappointed me.
The whole point of me joining this forum is to have fruitful discourse with those who don't
agree with me, but yet share the same fundamental principles and who motivate me to question myself and seek to know and understand more and more regarding the faith and the controversial stances I have adopted. A certain lulling complacency is not an option for me. Unfortunately, I am not humble enough to have that supernally meritorious child-like faith and innocent simplicity that were the lot of such Saints as St. Paschal Baylon, the Little Flower, &c. I have a brain bigger than my heart [and it's not as big as it should be at this point], and that can be a very bad thing some of the times.
Thanks for your replies: I am enjoying this exchange.