PCED answers dubia regarding EF
  • The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei (PCED) has received a list of multiple dubia (29 in total!) from a priest in Poland regarding the traditional form of Roman rite (PDF). After one and half month, PCED has answered them (PDF). Dubia nn. 24-27 deal with music at Mass.
  • MarkB
    Posts: 104
    Fr. Z. posted about this.
    http://wdtprs.com/blog/2018/11/wherein-fr-z-offers-a-cautionary-tale-to-those-who-struggle-with-liturgical-conundra/

    He cautions people not to submit dubia about the EF at the present time.
    Thanked by 1StevenRabanal
  • MarkB,

    Thank you for posting to this article.

    Fr. Zuhsldorf is certainly welcome to his opinion. I personally found the reasons he gave unconvincing.

    Remember, too, that Fr. Zuhlsdorf has never been a Pastor; and he probably never will be (he recently entered his sixtieth year). He doesn't seem to understand the importance of Dubia such as the one posted by Andris Amolins (above) for those of us who work “in the trenches.” My understanding is that Fr. Zuhlsdorf is incardinated in an Italian Diocese in which he has never been stationed—apologies if I have missed something here. Perhaps I should say that I am unaware of him serving officially in the Diocese in which he's incardinated.

    For myself, I think the Dubia was quite welcome and important; and I think it's very cool that Ecclesia Dei is responding to stuff like this.

  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,395
    Fr. Z formerly served on the staff of PCED, so it's fair to say he is in a position to comment knowledgeably about its work and, more broadly, about what may happen when people submit questions on liturgical matters to Roman offices.

    I really have to wonder about the issues submitted; they can't all have arisen in the questioner's parish.

    He could have obtained answers to some of them by reading Summorum Pontificum and Universae Ecclesiae more attentively; and he could have answered some by consulting people who have followed the music-related issues surrounding the EF.
  • The CCW commentary states that the instructions for chanting as published in the Graduale 1908 are still in force. Does there exist a solid i.e. dependable English translation of those Latin instructions?
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 937
    I think Fr. Z is right on the money. Given who's in charge, and their (at the very least perceived) antipathy toward anything "traditional," you had better be darn sure you really need that dubium answered right now before you ask it. You might not like the answer you get, and it will be difficult to ever go back once the question has been answered.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,395
    Reading the line from De musica sacra precisely, it regulates the publication of chant editions with added rhythmic signs, and says that they must be consistent with the grouping of notes in the Vatican editions. I'm not convinced that it regulates performance practice.
  • The CCW commentary states that the instructions for chanting as published in the Graduale 1908 are still in force. Does there exist a solid i.e. dependable English translation of those Latin instructions?
    I believe it's identical to the "Preface to the Vatican Edition" found at the front of the Liber. The PCED response to dubium no. 24 seems to affirm that "different methods" are acceptable. 25 clarifies that the text of the chant must conform to the official liturgical books.
  • The crucial bit of information from the second article linked by MarkB above would seem to be the section from the 1958 document:

    The signs, called rhythmica, which have been privately introduced into Gregorian chant, are permitted, provided that the force and meaning of the notes found in the Vatican books of liturgical chant are preserved.


    Paragraph 59 “De Musica Sacra” (September 3rd, 1958)


    That seems pretty definitive, in terms of changing the chant rhythm. The question is whether the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei has the power to overturn that…and a a Canonist would probably have to answer that one.
  • First of all, credit where credit is due. The links to the dubia and answers were first posted on https://www.leforumcatholique.org/message.php?num=857491.

    The question is whether the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei has the power to overturn that


    Does not seem to me that PCED has overturned that. It just says, as does De musica sacra, that Solesmes signs are permitted. After 1908, most books were printed by Solesmes and, as it seems, accepted by Church authorities. This would imply that they fulfill the requirement about "force and meaning of the notes". I am not so sure about M. Peres. But now, some sing also in 'semiologically informed', some - in 'mensural' way, some use 'Medicean' editions. In addition, we have newly restituted melodies in the Graduale novum. PCED wisely did not wish to enter the fray.

    As to the question whether PCED is acting ultra vires, compared with the permissions of earlier forms of Holy Week, etc., the freedoms in musicological questions seem a small thing.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,013
    I have never heard the Sanctus pro defunctis like this Nova Organi Harmonia, usually both the second and third notes are doubled. But NOH is just following the 1908 official version. Anyway, if polyphony is not banned, surely most variations in rhythm of the chant can be tolerated provided the singers (congregation) are singing the same thing.
    Thanked by 1igneus
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,113
    Remember, too, that Fr. Zuhlsdorf has never been a Pastor; and he probably never will be


    Also, although you are technically right that he's not a pastor, to say he's not in the trenches is quite mischaracterization of what he does day-to-day.
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,502
    Well, he has not been given the canonical appointment to shepherd a specific flock for a period of years. He's hardly alone in the regard, but it is a difference worth noting with respect to some of what he does, though not so much in this instance.

    I assume he remains incardinated in the suburbicarian see of Velletri-Segni and would continue to do so unless and until Cardinal Arinze departs from that see and a successor decides to review the status of offshore priests incardinated there.
    Thanked by 1Dixit_Dominus_44
  • Fr. Z formerly served on the staff of PCED, so it's fair to say he is in a position to comment knowledgeably about its work


    Let me be clear: I don't deny he worked for Ecclesia Dei and probably knows a ton about what went on there during the 1990s (although my understanding is he was never an overseer in that Pontifical Commission).

    And I made clear he is welcome to his opinion.

    My only point was that one who has served as a Pastor has a completely different point of view, which is also worthy of consideration.

    I am glad Andris Amolins posted this stuff—I think it has value.
    Thanked by 1Liam
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,395
    I'm glad too: it's very informative, even if I think posing the questions involves some risk of getting inconvenient answers.
  • igneusigneus
    Posts: 265
    Neither the clergy can ask dubia (in English? seriously?), nor the commission answer them. Not a single instance of "Serventur decreta"! (i.e. "we don't want to add anything, please go ask some rubricist for interpretation of the existing norms")
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,395
    Didn't you notice? A few of the responses were: go and look at section nn. of document Such-and-such, "which is clear".
    Thanked by 1Liam
  • igneusigneus
    Posts: 265
    @chonak I did, but this is much more verbose and "educational" than the traditional response.
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    Canon 16 §3 makes clear that:

    "An interpretation in the form of a judicial sentence or of an administrative act in a particular matter, however, does not have the force of law and only binds the persons for whom and affects the matters for which it was given."

    This is what the PCED refers to when it says that its responses are binding when they are general.

    The PCED knows how to publish general binding interpretations if it wants to publish interpretations. This (along with many responses from the PCED) is not published.

    Think about this logically, there's no way people can be bound by decrees that they don't know about and they can't be responsible for knowing about them if they're not published.

    and would continue to do so unless and until Cardinal Arinze departs from that see and a successor decides to review the status of offshore priests incardinated there.

    Cardinal Arinze doesn't administer the Diocese of Velletri-Segni, Bishop Vincenzo Apicella administers it.

  • dad29
    Posts: 1,595
    Most interesting to me was the response having to do with the "third Confiteor," which PCED finds "licit" but ONLY in those places where it is already a practice.

  • Liam
    Posts: 3,502
    "Cardinal Arinze doesn't administer the Diocese of Velletri-Segni, Bishop Vincenzo Apicella administers it."

    Of course, but Fr Z's personal relationship is primarily with Cdl Arinze from his years in Rome.
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    Of course, but Fr Z's personal relationship is primarily with Cdl Arinze from his years in Rome.

    That doesn't make any sense as a reason for his incardination there, because when he was ordained there in 1991, the titular was Sebastiano Cardinal Baggio and from 1993-2005 the titular was Cardinal Ratzinger.
  • fcbfcb
    Posts: 253
    Isn't he now incardinated in Madison, WI? He at least gives that impression.
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,595
    Madison? I don't think so.

    Jahaza, neither of us know the back-story on Villetri-Segni--but I'd look for a connection between that Diocese and Mgr. Schuler (RIP) of St Paul, MN. The good Monsignor was Z's "sponsor", so to speak.