Tuesday, February 7, 2012

More On The Kiko-ists

I originally got the source articles from CNA regarding the alleged "approval" of the NeoCatechumal Way's weird liturgical practices, but I'm linking here to Fr. Zuhlsdorf's references so that his commentary is available.


“With respect to the celebrations of the Holy Mass and the other liturgies of the Church,” communities of the Neocatechumenal Way must “follow the norms of the Church as indicated in the liturgical books – to do otherwise must be understood to be a liturgical abuse,” a Vatican official who requested anonymity told CNA on Jan. 21.

If the non-approval is that obvious, why is this guy needing anonymity? What should he have to worry about?

The invitation issued by the movement to bishops for yesterday’s event stated that “the purpose of this meeting is that His Holiness will sign a Decree from the Congregation of Divine Worship recognizing the full approval of the liturgies of the Neocatechumenal Way.”

Instead, approval for the non-liturgical practices of the group came by way of another source. It was Pontifical Council for the Laity that issued a decree of approval – after having consulted the Congregation for Divine Worship – for those “celebrations” present in their Catechetical Directory.

In this process “the Neocatechumenal Way obtained no new permissions whatsoever,” said the official, who is familiar with the approval process for prayers and liturgies.

“Essentially, the Pontifical Council is only approving these things that are found in the Catechetical Directory of the Neocatechumenal Way, and in no way touches those things contained in the liturgical books.”

He said that the decree served merely as an assurance that “there is nothing erroneous to the prayers that they use in the context of their catechetical sessions.”

And if this was just some kind of nihil obstat for their non-liturgical prayers, why all the hub-bub over this event in the first place?

A better response was given later by one of the NCW's own:

Father Ricardo Reyes Castillo, a member of the Neocatechumenal Way, said Pope Benedict XVI’s approval of the movement’s non-liturgical celebrations “has changed absolutely nothing.”

The Panamanian priest told CNA on Jan. 23 that the papal approval of the celebrations contained in the Neocatechumenal Catechetical Directory means “simply that the Church has confirmed that the rites used in the different stages of formation in the Neocatechumenal Way are in accord with the tradition of the Church.”

Hey, that's great!. Maybe somebody should explain all this to Kiko because he is thinking something a little bit different.

This is what Fr. Z and others seem to be ignoring. The "approval" is going to be touted as legitimacy for the whole thing. Until the CDW (or somebody) has the ability to squash the liturgical abuses, you're going to have priests, laity, and even bishops who are drawn in by this, all with the idea that Rome said it was ok. This would not be a new phenomenon. How many liturgical abuses are committed in the name of "what Vatican II said"?

Regardless of the fine print, it's tough for me to see this move as anything other than horrible.


EJH said...

You are almost entirely incorrect.

The approval was for the "non-liturgical" practices of the Neocatechumenal Way but not because the liturgical practices are not approved. The liturgical practices, i.e. the Eucharist etc. were already explicitly approved with the approval of the Statutes of the Neocatechumenal Way in 2008. Hence why they don't need any mention now, nor does their not being mentioned mean anything.

Furthermore, the "hub-bub" over the event is because, like it was expressed in the invitation you mentioned, with this approval, everything from the beginning to the end of the Way has been reviewed and scrutinized by the Vatican and has been definitively approved. That includes the Eucharist, and all other liturgical/non-liturgical practices of the Neocatechumenal Way. Also approved is the Catechetical Directory of the Neocatechumenal Way, i.e. the catechises.

Also, Father Ricardo Reyes Castillo saying that the approval of the movement’s non-liturgical celebrations “has changed absolutely nothing” could mean anything. In fact, the way I took it was "nothing has changed" in the sense the Vatican has approved everything as it was, without changing it. Because as I said before, with this approval, everything in the way has already been approved by the Vatican.

Lastly, if you, or anyone who reads this, would like a much more eloquent and thorough explanation/response to the baseless criticism and blatant confusion created by some about this approval then please visit:


or to read the full response from Fr. Neil Xavier O’Donoghue (which also has a link on that site) you can go here:


Throwback said...

I'm not sure where I took a position on the "approval" one way or the other. My perspective is one of confusion because there seem to be a lot of people saying different things.

You can interpret Fr. Castillo's comments your way. Fr. Zuhlsdorf has taken them differently. I certainly thought that his was a contradiction of Kiko's statements when I first read them.

If the Vatican had already passed explicit approval on the NCW's liturgical practices, then there wouldn't be any real scrutiny now, nor would there be anything newsworthy about this. I don't recall ever having heard commentary or criticism of the NCW's "non-liturgical" prayers or practices. It almost always focuses on the liturgy and how it's conducted.

Not to mention that you've got Catholic publications (as we've recorded here) all making the point that there was no approval of the liturgical practices. I suppose they could all be wrong, but all that does is lend itself to the aforementioned confusion.

I've read Fr. O'Donoghue's comments. They aren't very helpful as they are primarily his opinion. He also fails to mention where a lot of this controversy comes from, such as Cardinal Arinze's letter on behalf of Pope Benedict back in 2006 or so. It's easy to pick on Sandro Magister and such, but that's not really addressing the issues.

Throwback said...

Let me add that my conclusion was that, regardless of what was intended by this "approval," it will have the practical affect of an approval of all the NCW's activities.

Anonymous said...

The approval of Catechetical Directory in 2011 already include the rites that are for each of the 13 stages of the formation process. I don'[t understand why there are still people who question whether it is liturgical or non liturgical etc.

Art. 13 of the Statute of the Neocatechumenal Way (wrt Eucharist) is in accord with many provisions of the GIRM (160, 283, 320,321) which is valid - the premise of which rests on the acceptance of the Bishop of the Diocese and the parish priest. The mark of obedience is shown in the fact the Way cannot be started in any diocese or parish if the Bishop and/or parish priest do not welcome the Way. So, what's the big deal?