"It is...Our will that Catholics should abstain from certain appellations which have recently been brought into use to distinguish one group of Catholics from another. They are to be avoided not only as 'profane novelties of words,' out of harmony with both truth and justice, but also because they give rise to great trouble and confusion among Catholics. Such is the nature of Catholicism that it does not admit of more or less, but must be held as a whole or as a whole rejected: 'This is the Catholic faith, which unless a man believe faithfully and firmly; he cannot be saved' (Athanasian Creed). There is no need of adding any qualifying terms to the profession of Catholicism: it is quite enough for each one to proclaim 'Christian is my name and Catholic my surname,' only let him endeavour to be in reality what he calls himself." -- Pope Benedict XV, Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum 24 (1914)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Statement on UE by Una Voce International

FIUV Statement in Response to the Publication of
Universae Ecclesiae.

The publication of the document
Universae Ecclesiae on 13th May 2011 has generated much comment

and been the subject of detailed analysis in the media. The International Federation Una Voce would

like to present a different perspective on this document which it welcomes enthusiastically.

The Una Voce movement started in late 1964, before the end of the Second Vatican Council, to ensure

the retention of the age-old Latin language for the celebration of the Holy Mass. National societies

were formed and the International Federation Una Voce (FIUV) came into being formally in 1967. In

1970, following the introduction of the
Novus Ordo Missae, the emphasis had changed and the

members of the Una Voce Federation decided to strive for the preservation of the traditional Roman

rite as decreed by the Council Fathers in
Sacrosanctum Concilium (Art. 4), the document on the


In 1970, Dr Eric de Saventhem, the first President of the FIUV, said that the suppression of the

traditional Mass had been achieved
de facto only and not de jure. It would be unthinkable, he said, for

the older form of Mass to be forbidden as one would have to argue that it had been wrong or bad –

either doctrinally or pastorally.

In 1984 the Indult
Quattuor Abhunc Annos of Pope John Paul II granted a partial relaxation for the

celebration of the traditional Mass which was a small step forward. In 1988 the Indult
Ecclesia Dei

was more generous but the difficulty remained that a bishop’s permission was required and in

most instances this was not forthcoming. The situation remained very unsatisfactory – both for priests

and laity.

When Pope Benedict XVI was elected in 2005 he asked that people pray for him that he may not flee

for fear of the wolves. Notwithstanding the great obstacles being faced, the Holy Father promulgated

Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum in July 2007 and affirmed the right of all priests of the

Roman rite to celebrate the traditional Latin Mass, thus confirming the position of the Una Voce

Federation since 1970 that the traditional Mass may have been suppressed
de facto but not de jure. To

their shame, some in the Church refused to accept the will of the Holy Father and the legitimate

aspirations of many of the faithful and were determined to undermine this
Motu Proprio at every

opportunity. It was this negative and obstructive stance that made necessary a subsequent document to

clarify certain matters.

Although some have commented that
Universae Ecclesiae still leaves some questions unclear, what is

perfectly clear is that the Holy Father has fully restored to the universal Church the traditional Roman

rite as enshrined in the liturgical books of 1962, that the rubrics in force in 1962 must be strictly

observed, and that Latin and the
Usus Antiquior must be taught in seminaries where there is a pastoral

need. And this pastoral need must be determined by those who wish to benefit from

and Universae Ecclesiae, and not be decided by those many in authority whose natural

desire is to prevent their implementation.

The International Federation Una Voce has worked patiently and tirelessly for the restoration of the

traditional liturgy for more than 40 years and is now witnessing a vindication of its fidelity to Holy

Mother Church and the See of Peter. The Federation expresses its thanks, prayers, and admiration to

our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, and praises his courage in not fleeing in the face of the wolves.

The Federation also extends its thanks and gratitude to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, and to

those bishops and priests who have also striven, often in great personal difficulty, to preserve and

foster the traditional liturgy for this and future generations.

Leo Darroch, President – Foederatio Internationalis Una Voce.

May 2011.

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