Last year I posted a column title, Weapons of Mass Destruction. In it I lampooned many of the abuses that arose out of the Second Vatican Council.
I revisit that post only to shed some light on how the abuses came about referencing Church documents, councils, and prelates.
Holy Communion in the Hand is allowed only as an indult, ie, a concession. In May 29, 1969 the Congregation for Divine Worship issued a document allowing for, but not to displace the traditional practice of receiving Holy Communion on the tongue.
The correct reception of Holy Communion has always been and still is on the tongue.
Unfortunately this has become the norm which has resulted in the desacrelization of the Eucharist.
Ad Populum, or facing the congregation during Mass was recently allowed in Pope Paul VI’s Missale Romanum in 1969 (fully released in 1970). Meaning it was not mandatory to face the congregation in all parts of the Mass, but only in certain instances.
Altar Girls, were allowed to serve in Mass by the Congregation for Divine Worship in a letter by Cardinal Ortas on March 15, 1994.
Basically there was a “reinterpretation” of Canon 230 that allowed a loophole for female altar servers.
So each national conference can decide to allow this, which the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops agreed to. Meaning that each diocese can decide for itself whether or not to allow female altar servers.
It is important to note that the Bishop is in line with apostolic succession and has the final say for liturgical practices in the diocese concerning female altar servers.
Removal of Altar Rails has never been allowed for, asked for, or called for.
Basically the reason all altar rails that were removed was because of a misinterpretation of Sacrosanctum Concilium.
In Sacrosanctum Concilium there is a line asking for ‘active participation’. Many bishops and priests took this to mean to remove barriers between the Tabernacle and the congregation, thus began the removal of altar rails.
What that line actually means is the ‘active participation’ of the laity lies in the relationship between ‘the sacrificial action of the laity and the self-sacrifice of Christ’ as Father Michael Carey points out in A Theology of the Sanctuary.
Guitars have not been explicitly addressed, though in my opinion it shouldn’t be allowed.
Liturgical Dancers have never been allowed for, asked for, or called for.
Cardinal Arinze summed it nicely by saying that it is allowable in some cultures, but definitely not in any Western culture.
Vernacular Liturgy, was allowed to play a more prominent role after the Second Vatican Council, though Latin was still to retain a place of primacy.
Nuns in Pants has not been allowed period. It is a requirement that nuns wear habits to represent their vow of poverty. If they are out of their habits, it is an act of disobedience and a mortal sin.
Finally as I stated above that the Bishop is in line with apostolic succession and has the final say for all liturgical practices in the diocese.