The Tridentine Mass may no longer be celebrated in parish churches, Pope Frances has announced.
Rules around use of the Extraordinary Form had been relaxed by Pope Benedict in an attempt to foster unity. Instead, according to Pope Frances, there has been further division.
He said: “In defence of the unity of the Body of Christ, I am constrained to revoke the faculty granted by my Predecessors”.
On Friday 16 July, Pope Francis issued a Moto Proprio, Traditionis Custodes.
The major points include:
• Masses in the Extraordinary Form (1962 Missal) may no longer take place in parish churches.
• The diocesan bishop is to establish locations for the old rite and to determine on which days it will be celebrated.
• The readings must be “in the vernacular language”
• The celebrant will be chosen by the bishop who must “take care not to authorise the establishment of new groups”.
Further, priests ordained after the publication of today’s Motu proprio who want to celebrate the pre-conciliar liturgy, “should submit a formal request to the diocesan Bishop who shall consult the Apostolic See before granting this authorisation”.
Those priests who are already using the Tridentine Rite must ask permission from their bishop to continue.
“This is an extremely disappointing document,” said Joseph Shaw, chairman of the Latin Mass Society of England and Wales.
He told The Daily Mail that, while Tridentine celebrations can continue, “the presumption is consistently against them.
“Bishops are being invited to close them down,” he said.