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Eucharistic Prayer Composed in Trattoria

20 September, 2014 0 Comments

By Sandro Magister and Rorate Caeli, September 2014

“The unbelievable scene is not unknown, it has been mentioned elsewhere before, but now confirmed in the published recollections of one of the two men involved: during the mad rush to have the Novus Ordo Missae (the New Mass of Paul VI)  ready as soon as possible, the Consilium, the 1963-1970 organization charged with the upheaval and destruction of the Roman Rite under the guise of “reform” and under the control mostly of Archbishop Annibale Bugnini, had reached a new level of ignominy in composing a new “canon”. The draft was so bad and dangerous that the new Eucharistic Prayer had to be rewritten in a hurry and at the last minute during a late-night meeting by two men in a Roman restaurant.”

One of these, perhaps?

Some of the things that emerge from trattorias in Trastevere are delightful (I had some splendid venison in one recently!) – but not all. I hesitated before posting this. Criticising the most popular (and, coincidentally, the shortest) Eucharistic prayer seems a bit scandalous. Apparently the story’s been around for a while, but this memoir means it can no longer be regarded as mere rumour, alas. The article also sheds depressing light on the mechanisms for liturgical reform, the cynical playing on the innocence (to take the most charitable interpretation) of Paul VI and his Liturgical Reform Commission.

Those of strong constitutions might venture upon the link at the end of the article, which explains the process whereby the 1600-year-old Roman Canon was supplanted by a bewildering plethora of options, to the extent that one can often now not be certain whether the priest (at a Novus Ordo Mass) is making it up as he goes along – in my case, a key reason for avoiding the Novus Ordo where possible.


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