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“Summorum Pontificum” Restricted…

“Anything to the Contrary Notwithstanding”: Francis Forbids “Old Mass” for Franciscan Religious Order

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UPDATE 12/8/13 20:38 GMT

The “Apostolic Commissioner” Volpi has now officially admitted that the real reason for the suppression of the 1962 Missal for the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate is that they are “traditionalist” and perhaps even “crypto-Lefebvrian.” SEE STORY HERE.

UPDATE 8/1/13 00:35 GMT

According to Vaticanist Giuseppe Nardi, it was a mere 6 members of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate — out of a total of 800 — who accomplished the prohibition of the 1962 Missal for their order by the Vatican. SEE STORY HERE.

UPDATE 7/29/13 21:45 GMT

As some Novus Ordo and semi-traditionalist bloggers are starting to minimize the importance of this new decree, saying, essentially, that “this isn’t as bad as it seems”, the highly-reliable (though indult) Rorate Caeli blog provides a lengthy response: CLICK HERE.

UPDATE 7/29/13 16:22 GMT

Now Available: Full Text of the Decree from the so-called “Sacred Congregation of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life” – click below:

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Protocol 52741/2012 (July 11, 2013)

In addition, there is also available now the text of a letter sent to the Friars by the “apostolic commissioner” (Fidenzio Volpi) whom “Pope” Francis just assigned to watch over the fraternity. The text can be found in the original Italian here and also in English translation here. The two documents — the decree and the letter — are also available in German at this point.

Original Story:

It’s a bad day for the semi-traditionalists and neo-conservatives that recognize Mr. Bergoglio as the Pope of the Catholic Church. Francis has just done the unthinkable: He has restricted Benedict XVI’s motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, which permitted the universal celebration of Mass according to the 1962 Missal (often referred to as the “Traditional Latin Mass” but officially called “Mass in the Extraordinary Form” by the Novus Ordo Church).

Specifically, Francis has approved a decree, dated July 11, 2013, that “installs an apostolic commissioner – in the person of the Capuchin Fidenzio Volpi – at the head of all the communities of the congregation of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate”. This religious order is “one of the most flourishing religious communities born … of recent decades … with many young vocations” (Sandro Magister, “For the First Time, Francis Contradicts Benedict”L’Espresso, July 29, 2013).

Magister’s article, which apparently broke the story worldwide, continues, explaining the background that led to this decree for the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate:

“They want to be faithful to tradition, in full respect for the magisterium of the Church. So much so that in their communities they celebrate Masses both in the ancient rite and in the modern rite, as moreover do hundreds of religious communities around the world – the Benedictines of Norcia, to give just one example – applying the spirit and the letter of the motu proprio “Summorum Pontificum” of Benedict XVI.

“But precisely this was contested by a core group of internal dissidents, who appealed to the Vatican authorities complaining of the excessive propensity of their congregation to celebrate the Mass in the ancient rite, with the effect of creating exclusion and opposition within the communities, of undermining internal unity and, worse, of weakening the more general ‘sentire cum Ecclesia.'”

Magister then quotes the decree itself:

“In addition to the above, the Holy Father Francis has directed that every religious of the congregation of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate is required to celebrate the liturgy according to the ordinary rite and that, if the occasion should arise, the use of the extraordinary form (Vetus Ordo) must be explicitly authorized by the competent authorities, for every religious and/or community that makes the request.”

This, of course, is in direct contrast with Benedict XVI’s decree of July 7, 2007, Summorum Pontificum, which specifically states:

“Communities of Institutes of consecrated life and of Societies of apostolic life, of either pontifical or diocesan right, wishing to celebrate Mass in accordance with the edition of the Roman Missal promulgated in 1962, for conventual or ‘community’ celebration in their oratories, may do so. If an individual community or an entire Institute or Society wishes to undertake such celebrations often, habitually or permanently, the decision must be taken by the Superiors Major, in accordance with the law and following their own specific decrees and statutes.”

(Benedict XVI, “Apostolic Letter” Summorum Pontificum, art. 3)

Francis’ new decree forbidding the use of the 1962 Missal for the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate will take effect on August 11, 2013, Magister reports.

The Rorate Caeli blog has the following important observations to add:

“The importance of this decree is difficult to overstate. In the aftermath of Summorum Pontificum the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate … became far and away the largest religious congregation to adopt the Traditional Latin Mass as their favored form of the Roman Rite, albeit without completely abandoning the Novus Ordo. The FFI soon came to occupy an important place in the ‘canonically regular’ Traditionalist Catholic world, being involved in numerous important conferences promoting Tradition and playing an important part in organizing many Pontifical Masses especially in Rome.

“Many Traditional Latin Mass sites are open only because of the ministry of FFI priests; it remains to be seen how many of these Masses will have to be ended because of this decree. As of today we have already been informed that some of nuns under the spiritual care of the FFI are looking for priests to continue celebrating the Traditional Latin Mass for them after the August 11 ban comes into force.

“In addition, the decree virtually ousts from his position the founder and superior of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, Fr. Stefano Manelli FFI, who is in his eighties, whose writings are known for their intense Marian devotion and fidelity to the traditions of Catholic asceticism and mysticism, and who is venerated by not a few as a living model of holiness.”

(Rorate Caeli“Pope Francis Severely Restricts the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate from Celebrating Traditional Mass, Imposes Novus Ordo on all their Priests”, July 29, 2013)

Clearly, Rome can act fast, strictly, and decisively — whenever they want to, that is.

It seems the era of Summorum Pontificum is officially over, now that the first crack has appeared. The rest could be just a matter of time. Indult/Motu adherents in the New Church — most notably The Remnant — must be shocked.

But why the surprise? Why the astonishment? Did the Semi-Traditionalists really think that what one (False) Pope permits another cannot rescind? Seriously?

The only ones who are having a bad day today are those who wouldn’t allow reality to dictate their position but the other way around, who didn’t go by Catholic principle. Reality will always catch up with you if you try to make it into something it is not. Or will Christopher Ferrara once again argue that even with this decree, the 1962 Mass for the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate isn’t “really” forbidden?

We wish good luck to “Father” Zuhlsdorf in “reading Francis through Benedict” today… And as for Michael Voris, while at this point he may still be able to get away with not reporting the inconvenient facts that contradict his “Francis is a conservative Pope who supports our position” agenda, the longer time goes on, the more people will become aware of the real facts from other sources, and the more foolish he will look. That’s what happens when you’re not dedicated to the truth but to what you would like the truth to be.