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5.0 out of 5 stars The Essential Form of Roman Rite Catholic Liturgy, December 20, 2006
This review is from: Heresy of Formlessness (Paperback)
Saint John's Gospel records the ultimate entry of God into history with those beautiful words: "The Word became flesh and dwelt amongst us." There is no Christianity without Jesus Christ made man, without Christ truly taking human form. Christian faith is utterly contingent upon the Incarnation.

It logical, then, that Christian worship is itself incarnational - it embraces the senses in coveying through its rites and prayers the graces brought to us by God incarnate. Naturally, it has done this in different ways throughout history, and the manner of Christian worship has developed over time.

The reforms in Western Catholic Liturgy in the latter half of the twentieth century have provoked controversy. Were they an act of positivist papal tyranny that destroyed the form of the Liturgy, or were they a legitimate refinement and development of it?

Mosebach - a German layman of some literary renown - holds the former. He maintains that the form, the incarnation of the Catholic faith in Roman rite Liturgy has been so badly mutilated in recent generations as to prejudice the celebration and transmission of the faith itself. Hence his use of the strident term "heresy." He is, of course, not alone in this conviction. But his perspective is of interest. He is no professional theologian or liturgist. He is an educated layman, a man of letters, who drifted away from the Church as the Mass of Paul VI engulfed it and who returned, gradually, through the rediscovery of the traditional Liturgy.

The book brings together a series of essays whose underlying thesis is that the form of the Traditional Liturgy is essential for Roman rite Catholics - spiritually and theologically - and that it should be restored. Were Mosebach a professional theologian he may have discussed this in relation to Von Balthasar's theology (a link is plausable). His reflections are personal, but are, perhaps, all that much more valuable for that. Many will identify with his struggles and desires.

Father Fessio's preface to the book is curious - it seems (most respectfully) to oppose the author's thesis. And the English edition apparently omits some of the stronger passages of the German original. But its publication is a sign that the cry for the restoration of the traditional Roman liturgy which it espouses is no longer regarded as absurd. Mosebach, in entering this debate, has given voice to many laymen who have suffered long and whose desires are not often articulated so clearly. Future generations will wonder why it took us so long to listen.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 14, 2014 9:42:42 PM PDT
Have you read Work of Human Hands?

In reply to an earlier post on May 13, 2015 8:32:44 AM PDT
D. says:
Rev. Anthony Cekada, author of the book you mention, is a sedevacantist.

In reply to an earlier post on May 13, 2015 9:56:02 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 13, 2015 11:49:26 AM PDT
Yes he is. He has concluded since Vatican II taught error one has only two logical choices: 1. The Church can defect and contradict itself and hence its claims for 2,000 years that it was protected from error by the Holy Spirit were false; 2. Vatican II was not a work of the church.

Cekada likewise has concluded that the Magisterium is quite clear, all the way back to Galatians 1:8-9, that a heretic is outside Catholic communion and ALIEN to the Church. A heretic cannot exercise legitimate authority in the Church - WHOMEVER he is. Even canon law affirms that (canon 188.4).

It logically follows that anyone adhering to the teachings of the post-Vatican II novus ordo church is a heretic and ipso facto excommunicated from the Catholic Church.

The Catholic Church is not just the people claiming to be Catholic, and not the buildings: it is
the body of teachings protected from error by the Holy Spirit and those FAITHFUL to that teaching in ALL respects.

Therefore, based on the above, which is infallible teaching of the Magisterium, Cekada has concluded the papal seat is vacant. Why? Because this is what the Catholic Church (pre-Vatican II) teaches and what the Catholic Church has ALWAYS taught, infallibly taught:

Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, 1896:

"The practice of the Church has ALWAYS been the same, as is shown by the UNANIMOUS teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as OUTSIDE Catholic communion, and ALIEN to the Church, WHOEVER would recede in the LEAST degree from ANY point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium. Epiphanius, Augustine, Theodoret, drew up a long list of the heresies of their times. St. Augustine notes that other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity. 'No one who merely disbelieves in all (these heresies) can for that reason regard himself as a Catholic or call himself one. For there may be or may arise some other heresies, which are not set out in this work of ours, and, if any one holds to A SINGLE ONE of these he is NOT a Catholic' (S. Augustinus, De Haeresibus, n. 88)."
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