I began this book in the role of a crabby old (very old) objector to the new mass, intending to issue primarily a cry from the heart, an extended complaynt at the plundering of liturgy as I knew it, which I sometimes considered akin to Henry VIII’s rape of the monasteries — Shakespeare’s “Bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.” A despoliation, I feared — and to some extent still do.
You can imagine the shift involved, to go from complainer about the New Mass — Novus Ordo (new order of mass = new mass) — to looking for what I had to learn about it and charting a course for myself among Vatican 2 and other documents and assorted commentary and my own experiences and my own commentary including my complaynts.
So it’s an adventure, a journey of a soul, some might say, but not I. In fact, I shrink from grand statements. Don’t like them, because they glorify a common — not common enough — process of changing your mind or at least somewhat re-positioning yourself in a matter of wide discussion.