The Corner

Recovering the Tridentine Mass

One of the most important religious developments of the last decade has been the rise in public interest in — and in official Vatican support for — the traditional Latin Eucharistic liturgy of the West. It may never become a majority movement even among conservative Roman Catholics, but it’s a sign that significant numbers of people are hungry for a greater reverence in public worship, and it may have an influence on liturgy more broadly. (Within Catholicism, it has even been suggested by a senior Vatican official that there might end up being a hybrid rite, combining the strengths of the old Mass and the post-Vatican II modern Mass.)

One common misconception about the Tridentine Rite (a misconception shared even by some of its supporters) is that it involves laymen purely as spectators of an action performed by a priest. Over at the Crisis website, Steve Skojec has an interesting essay about the participatory nature of that form of liturgy. To which I would add that there used to be, in Catholic parlance, the happy phrase “to assist at Mass” — which combined the sense of the French verb assister, “to attend,” with the common English sense of “assist” as in “help.” (Though even the passive-sounding English verb attend itself refers to a rather active form of hearing — the sound doesn’t just wash over us, we pay attention to it.)

Many thanks to a conservative Jesuit friend for pointing out the article. 

Most Popular


Cold Brew’s Insidious Hegemony

Soon, many parts of the United States will be unbearably hot. Texans and Arizonans will be able to bake cookies on their car dashboards; the garbage on the streets of New York will be especially pungent; Washington will not only figuratively be a swamp. And all across America, coffee consumers will turn their ... Read More
National Security & Defense

The Warmonger Canard

Whatever the opposite of a rush to war is — a crawl to peace, maybe — America is in the middle of one. Since May 5, when John Bolton announced the accelerated deployment of the Abraham Lincoln carrier group to the Persian Gulf in response to intelligence of a possible Iranian attack, the press has been aflame ... Read More

Australia’s Voters Reject Leftist Ideas

Hell hath no fury greater than left-wingers who lose an election in a surprise upset. Think Brexit in 2016. Think Trump’s victory the same year. Now add Australia. Conservative prime minister Scott Morrison shocked pollsters and pundits alike with his victory on Saturday, and the reaction has been brutal ... Read More
NR Webathon

We’ve Had Bill Barr’s Back

One of the more dismaying features of the national political debate lately is how casually and cynically Attorney General Bill Barr has been smeared. He is routinely compared to Roy Cohn on a cable-TV program that prides itself on assembling the most thoughtful and plugged-in political analysts and ... Read More