From Paris and Lourdes, the Lesson of the "Liturgist" PopeOn his trip to France, Benedict XVI did not only defend the ancient rite of the Mass. He also explained and demonstrated repeatedly what he believes to be the authentic meaning of the Catholic liturgy of today and always. And, about sacred music, he said...
by Sandro Magister
ROMA, September 16, 2008 – In the three Masses celebrated during his trip to Paris and Lourdes, Benedict XVI followed the post-conciliar rite. But he intentionally enriched it with elements characteristic of the old rite: the cross at the center of the altar, communion given to the faithful on the tongue, while kneeling, the sacredness of the whole.
The reciprocal "enrichment" between the two rites is the main objective that impelled Benedict XVI to promulgate, in 2007, the motu proprio "Summorum Pontificum," which liberalized the use of the ancient rite of the Mass, according to the Roman missal of 1962.
Sandro Magister's analysis is always very valuable. It was just over a year ago, that Benedict freed the old version of the Roman Rite. He chose that aniverary to preach liturgical tolerance to a hierarchy short in that pastoral virtue. Moreover, Benedict used this "teaching moment" to show how the old and new can cross fertilize each other.