Amidst all the Twittering and buzz about other liturgy topics, this 183-2 approval endorses the above-titled Mass, and another 179-1 vote sends it on its way to Rome for inclusion in Roman Missal III. It would seem to be a slam dunk, given the gravity of the cause, but with Roman bureaucracy, you never know, do you?
The Mass requested by Cardinal O’Connor, who died in 2000, was first prepared in 1990 to be included in the Roman Missal. The text was approved by the Committee on the Liturgy and the bishops as a whole in 1992 and sent on to the Vatican for review the following year. The Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments soon after expressed interest in the subject matter but said it was “a matter of universal concern” that required further study.
The Mass texts themselves are a generation old. And in the days before retrenchment and reform2, they would have been easily included in Roman Missal 2. There was no problem then with the creation of needful new texts where the Latin edition of the Missal was deficient. It’s really a shame that such an expression of prayer for life gets buried in the halls of the CDWDS. “No further response on the subject was ever received,” as ICEL’s Bishop Seratelli concedes. Seemingly, the universe of concern doesn’t extend to the black hole of bureaucracy.
Of course, the Missal includes many options for Masses of Thanksgiving, and for Masses for Justice and Peace. Over the years pastoral-thinking pro-life pastors have offered their own celebrations with appropriate readings and prayers, some, no doubt, not contained in the sacramentary. Is there any Catholic out there who would object to such a celebration?
Any readers ever seen these Mass texts? I have a curiosity on the choices for readings, psalmody, and propers.