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The Relationship between Priest and People in the Latin Mass: Space and Time for Divine Intimacy. Critics of the Traditional Latin Mass often raise the objection that the priest is “far away” from …More
The Relationship between Priest and People in the Latin Mass: Space and Time for Divine Intimacy.

Critics of the Traditional Latin Mass often raise the objection that the priest is “far away” from the congregation, set apart as the only one offering the liturgy; that he “does everything” and they “do nothing”; that he ignores them, and they are lost; etc. These are the sorts of claims that drove the original liturgical reforms of the 1960s. Experience and study show that such objections are rather superficial and that, if we think about things more carefully, the traditional approach makes much more sense of the paradoxes of divine worship. The hieratic distance between priest and people serves to accentuate the divine presence that invites all of us deeper into the liturgy and impresses on us the seriousness of our common work of worship. The priest’s more involved role serves as a model and an invitation for the faithful’s prayer, as they learn from watching and following, like apprentices from a master. The apparent “ignoring” of us people in the pews by ministers busy in the sanctuary liberates us from a merely horizontal and human “self-enclosed circle” in which the higher acts of prayer are suffocated in low-level communication and comprehension.

This lecture is a no-holds-barred defense of the "sacerdotalism" or priest-centeredness of the old rite and of its immeasurable superiority for the spiritual life of the priest as well as for the spiritual life of his people.

(Given at St. Edward on the Lake Catholic Church, Lakeport, Michigan, March 4, 2022. Includes Q&A.)
Cat Smith
Dr. K is superhyperpapalisticsemitradhypnotic! 😂 😂 😂
Lisi Sterndorfer
"hypntic" - also said from pro-gay Vienna Cardinal Schönborn.
Maggie212
What is strange is that after years of going to the diocesan Masses, Novus Ordo, I became more and more irritated by the interruptions to silent prayer and meditation, especially before and during communion. And the handshake thing bothered me from the start. Everyone crossing the aisles, backslapping, waving, all with the excuse to see who was there, and what they were wearing. When I go to the …More
What is strange is that after years of going to the diocesan Masses, Novus Ordo, I became more and more irritated by the interruptions to silent prayer and meditation, especially before and during communion. And the handshake thing bothered me from the start. Everyone crossing the aisles, backslapping, waving, all with the excuse to see who was there, and what they were wearing. When I go to the Traditional Mass, the time passes so fast, and I have literally prayed the entire time except for Homily. You are CLOSER to God not farther from the Priest.
Chat Chartreux
At the Latin Mass we are truly at the foot of the Cross. All of that NO behavior you described is completely inappropriate at the foot of the Cross.
John A Cassani
When I was still living in both liturgical “worlds,” what was clear to me was not that the priest was far away in the TLM, but that he was separated from the people by the altar in the NO.