The Motu Proprio Interpreted
As promised, Pope Benedict’s Motu Proprio was released today. The English version of the explanatory letter may be found here.
Upon a first reading, it seems to me he’s very nicely telling bishops, "Look, I understand your concerns about the old Latin Mass. But there’s nothing wrong with it. It’s not opposed to Vatican II. It’s actually pretty darn good.
“And obstructing it as some of you are doing is unnecessarily alienating good faithful people. That’s a bad habit that has got to stop. So stop! We (and that includes you, my brother bishops) will freely allow the old Mass. If any problems come up, let me know, and we’ll deal with it. But we will not obstruct the old Mass any longer. Got it? Good!
“Thank you. Bless you. Drink German beer, etc.”
Well, he didn’t say the last bit. And that's my not so nice paraphrase. But you get the picture. If I see any particularly interesting or cogent analyses, I’ll post them.
It will be interesting to see how certain U. S. bishops respond . . . or not.
UPDATE: As is to be expected, a generous amount of thoughtful analysis is going up over at The New Liturgical Movement.
UPDATE 2: As is also to be expected, the trads are celebrating.