March 27, 2004
vol 15, no. 87

The Disciplines of Lent
    A Comparison of the Propers of the Traditional Latin Mass and the Novus Ordo

    by Kevin M. Tierney

      Editor's Note: This series on the Propers of the Mass features the apologetics of Kevin M. Tierney. Helping Kevin launch this project was Jacob Michael, but now that it is up and running Jacob, with a heavier work-load and more in demand on other necessary projects, has turned it over to Kevin full-time. We are confident Kevin will do an excellent job in this special feature simply called "Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi" which, of course, translated means roughly how one prays is how one believes. As you can see the differences between the two are as clear as black and white. One, the Latin Mass is full and reverent, the Novus Ordo sterile and bland. It needs innovation and novelty to spice things up. The Latin Mass merely depends on the Divine. This series will compare the Propers of the synthetic Novus Ordo with the absolute Propers of the Traditional Latin Mass to show all that the NOM comes up far, far inferior, if not worse. Many might place the blame on the venom of the vernacular, but we all know what vipers injected this poison. It must be sucked out and spit out forever. Hopefully this series will give readers motivation to expedite that process in the counter-revolution dedicated to taking back the Mystical Body of Christ for Christ! We continue with the fourth installment of the Disciplines of Lent:


    In our continuing study of the Propers of the Traditional Roman Rite, and that of the Novus Ordo Missae, we now come to the Third Sunday of Lent. As time progresses during the season of Lent, the temptations will increase. Human nature, in its pride, believes it has mastered the certain discipline it has imposed in itself, as they have gone this long in maintaining it. The problem with this is simply that man can become too proud, and overconfident. "If any man stand, take heed lest he fall." With that in mind, we should still be focused on which liturgy better brings out the issue of fasting and self-denial before God, in anticipation of the Glories of the Resurrection.

    As is the custom in this series, The Traditional Mass will be marked by TM and both in Latin (in blue type) and English (in black type), the Novus Ordo Missae by NOM and in maroon type, as in marooned by synthetic novelty) We shall begin, as always, with the Introit:

INTROIT:    Psalm 24: 15-16, 1, 2
Oculi mei semper ad Dominum, quia ipse evellet de laqueo pedes meos : respice in me, et Miserere mei, Quoniam unicus et pauper sum ego. (Psalm 24: 1, 2). Ad te, Domine, levavi animan, meam : Deus meus, in te confide, non erubescam. V. Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto. Sicut erat in principio et nunc et semper et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
Repeat Oculi mei...
My eyes are ever towards the Lord : for He shall pluck my feet out of the snare : look Thou upon me, and have mercy on me : for I am alone and poor. (Psalm 24: 1, 2). To Thee, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul : in Thee, O my God, I put my trust, let me not be ashamed. V. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Repeat My eyes are ever...

    "My eyes are ever fixed on the Lord, for he releases my feet from the snare, O look at me and be merciful, for I am wretched and alone." (NOM, Introit, Psalm 25:15-16)

    Part of the problem with the Novus Ordo is that it omits "negative theology." Negative theology focuses on the fact that man is an utter sinner in need of redemption. It recognizes his fragile human nature, while talking about its ultimate restoration in Christ Jesus. The two Introits are relatively the same. The only discrepancy is that the Traditional Introit follows with the fact that we lift our hearts and our souls to the Lord, so that we may not be ashamed. Here is a direct consequence listed in the Traditional Proper. The idea that without God, we are shameful is an idea that does not appear in the Novus Ordo. Sadly, many in the Novus Ordo have taken Traditional Catholic teaching about the dignity of man too far, for whatever dignity man has inherently, it does not reach it's full potential without Jesus Christ.

Quaesumus, omnipotens Deus, vota humilium respice : atrque ad defensionem nostram, dexteram tuae majestatis extende. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus,
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.
Humbling ourselves before Thee, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, favorably to regard the desires of our heart: and in our defense to stretch forth the right hand of Thy Majesty. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
Forever and ever.

    "Father, you have taught us to overcome our sins by prayer, fasting and works of mercy. When we are discouraged by our weakness, give us confidence in your love. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen." (NOM, Opening Prayer)"

   I note sadly that this is the first time in three weeks the Novus Ordo is required to mention fasting in its liturgy. At other times it is only optional. The Season of Lent is focused on fasting, yet for the Novus Ordo, it does not need to entail what Lent is until several weeks into the season. That is a serious problem. This collect is one of the few times you will really hear about man's weakness, but even then, it does so in a very-watered down way. In what way is man weak?

    The Traditional collect continues the harmony of the Introit, first talking about lifting ourselves to God. The Collect then also talks about God defending us. It speaks of our humility and God's majesty. If we ask something for God in a prideful and arrogant spirit, God will not grant it to us. Many people who ardently defend the Novus Ordo limit the problem to catechesis. If one has an orthodox training, one can understand these things from the Novus Ordo. Yet in the Traditional Rite, these things are spelled out clearly for us, so the liturgy is merely a supplement to outside catechesis, since the majority of the faithful over time learn their faith through the liturgy. When one reads Propers like these, we can understand why. The Tract which follows only reinforces what the Traditional Collect had said. Sadly, this is gutted from the Novus Ordo. Repetition is the mother of all learning. We grow a deeper prayer life by the Rosary by its continuous recitation, which causes us to reflect deeper on its mysteries. Likewise, the recurring themes in the Traditional Mass reinforce the teaching to the faithful, whereas the Novus Ordo mentions it only once, if at all.

EPISTLE:   Ephesians 5: 1-9

Lectio Epistolae beati Pauli Apostoli ad Ephesios. Fratres : Estote imitators Dei, sicut fili Carissimi : et ambulate in dilectione, sicut et Christus dilexit nos, et radidit semetipsum pro nobis oblationem, et hostiam Deo catio autem, et omnis immunditiam, aut avaritia, nec nominetur in vobis, sicut decet stultiloquim, aut scurrilitas, quae ad rem non pertinet sed magis gratiarum action. Hoc enim scitote intelligentes, quod omnis fornicator, aut est idolorum servitus, non habet hereditatem in regno Christi, et Dei. Nemo vos seducat inanibus verbis : propeter haec enim venit ira Dei ergo effici participles eorum. Eratis enim aliquando tenegrae : nunc autem lux in Domino. Ut fili lucis ambulate : fructus enim lucis est in omni bonitate et justitia et veritate.
Deo Gratias.

Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Ephesians. Brethren : Be ye followers of God, as most dear children : and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath delivered Himself for us, an oblation and a sacrifice to God for an odor of sweetness. But fornication, and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not so much as be named among you, as becometh saints: or obscenity, or foolish talking, or scurrility, which is to no purpose : but rather giving of thanks. For know you this, and understand, that no fornicator, or unclean or covetous person, which is a serving of idols, hath inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words : for because of these things cometh the anger of God upon the children of unbelief. Be ye not therefore partakers with them. For you were heretofore darkness: but now light in the Lord. Walk then as children of the light : for the fruit of the light is in all goodness, and justice, and truth.
Thanks be to God.

    "Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. The angel of the LORD appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up." When the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, "Moses, Moses!" And he said, "Here I am." Then He said, "Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground." He said also, I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God. The LORD said, "I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings. "So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite… Then Moses said to God, "Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you.' Now they may say to me, 'What is His name?' What shall I say to them?" God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM"; and He said, "Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'" God, furthermore, said to Moses, "Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.' This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations." (NOM First Reading, Exodus 3:1-8, 13-15, verse 14 may be omitted)

    We once again see a problem we encountered last week. While these Scriptural readings are nice, they seem entirely out of place within the liturgical year. As Msgr. Klaus Gamber notes, the new liturgical cycle is utterly confusing, and loses the sense of stability in worship. I also find it curious that the omission that is optional is omitting the part where God commands Moses to say that God indeed has sent Moses to them. One wonders why this is omitted.

    The differences once again in the Traditional Mass are quite striking. The reading is Ephesians 5:1-9. Reminding us of the Lenten season, and our utter dependence on God, St. Paul exhorts us to walk as children of the light in Christ. He then details in particular what keeps one out of the light, fornication, obscenity, lack of cleanliness, these things are not those of the saints, but the pagans, those who have not the light. Those who partake in these sins will not inherit the Kingdom of God, an entirely fitting message as we continue in our journey throughout Lent.

GRADUAL    Psalm 9: 20, 4

Exsurge, Domine, non praevaleatr home: judicentur gentes in conspectu tuo V. In convertendo inimicum meum retorsum, infirmabuntur, et peribunt a facie tua.

Arise, O Lord, let no man be strengthened : let the nations be judged in Thy sight. V. When my enemy shall be turned back, they shall be weakened and perish before Thy face.

    "Bless the LORD, O my soul, And all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits; Who pardons all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases; Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you with loving kindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle. The LORD performs righteous deeds And judgments for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel. The LORD is compassionate and gracious, Slow to anger and abounding in loving kindness. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His loving kindness toward those who fear Him." (NOM Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 103:1-8, 11, verse 8 may be omitted)

    In a penitential season, while there are to be certain times we focus on the positive, we must focus on those negative aspects of our life, in purging ourselves from them. While the Traditional Proper focuses on God's justice combined with his mercy, the Novus Ordo Proper focuses only on God's mercy. One cannot have God's mercy without God's justice. It reminds me of the movie 'Dogma', the "Buddy-Christ" smiling and pointing at you. The idea that Christ is our judge is a theme that is almost completely absent from the Novus Ordo. One wonders why the old Proper had to be changed. One would assume its focus on negativity and justice. Justice would mean accountability of the actions of a soul before God, and the fact that those actions would condemn him. This is very offensive to the revolution no doubt, so it had to go.

TRACT:    Psalm 105: 1-4

Ad te leavi oculos meos, qui habitas in coelis. V. Ecce sicut oculi servorumnin minibus dominorum suorum. V. Et sicut oculi ancillae in minibus dominae suae : ita oculi nostri ad Dominum Deum nostrum, donec miseratur nostri : V. Miserere nobis, Domine, Miserere nobis.

To Thee have I lifted up my eyes, Who dwellest in Heaven. V. Behold as the eyes of servants are on the hands of their masters. V. And as the eyes of the handmaid are on the hands of her mistress : so are our eyes unto the Lord our God, until He'll have mercy on us. V. Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us.

    Here again the Traditional Tract reinforces that we have need of God for without Him, we are nothing until He has mercy on us. This necessity of our dependence on God is omitted in the Novus Ordo.

GOSPEL:    Luke 11: 14-28
Sequentia sancti Evangelii secundum Lucam.

In illo tempore: Erat Jesus ejiciens daemonium, et illud erat mutum. Et cum ejecisset daemonium, locutus est mutus et admiraitae sunt turbae. Quidiam autem ex eis diserunt : "In Beelzebub principe daemoniorum ejicit daemonia." Et alli tentantes, signum de caelo quaerebant ab eo. Ipse autem ut vidit cogitations eorum, dixit eis : "Omne regnum in siepsum divisum desolabitur et domus supra domum cadet. Si autem et satanas in siepsum divisus est, quomodo stabit regnum ejus ? qui dicitis in Beelzebub me ejicere daemonia. Si autem ego in Beelezub ejicio daemonia, filii vestri in quo ejiciunt? Ideo ipsi judices vestri erunt. Porro si in digito Dei ejicio daemonia : profecto pervenit in vos regnum Dei. Cum fortis armatus custodit atrium suum, in pace sunt ea, quae possidet. Si autem fortior eo superveniens vicerit eum, universa arma ejus auferet, in qibus confidebat, et spolia ejus distribute. Qui non est mecum, contra me est : et qui non colligit meccumk dispersit. Cum immundus spiritus exierit de homine, ambulat per loca inaquosa, quaerens requiem : et non inveniens, dicit : Revertar in domum meam, unde exivi. Et cum venerit, invenit eam scopes mundatam, et ornatam. Tunc vadit, et assumit septem allios spiritus secum nequiores se, et ingressi habitant ibi. Et fiunt novissima hominis illius pejora prioribus." Factum est autem, cum haec diceret: "ex tollens vocem quaedam mulier de turba, dixit illi : Beatus venter, qui te portavit, et ubera, quae suxisti." At ille dixit : "Quinimo beati, qui audiunt verbum Dei, et custodiunt illud."
Laus tibi, Christi

The continuation of the holy Gospel according to Luke.
At that time Jesus was casting out a devil, and the same was dumb. And when He had cast out the devil, the dumb spoke, and the multitudes were in admiration at it. But some of them said : "He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils." And others, tempting, asked of Him a sign from Heaven. But He, seeing their thoughts, said to them : "Every kingdom divided against itself shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall. And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall this kingdom stand? Because you say that through Beelzebub I cast out devils. Now If I cast out devils by Beelzebub, by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore, they shall be your judges. But if I by the finger of God cast out devils : doubtless of the kingdom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth. But if a stronger than he come upon him and overcome him, he will take away all his armor wherein he trusted, and will distribute his spoils. He that is not with Me is against Me : and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth. When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest : and not finding, he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out. And when he is come, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked then himself, and entering in they dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first." And it came to pass, as He spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to Him: "Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps that gave Thee suck." But He said: "Yes, rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God, and keep it."

    "Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. And Jesus said to them, "Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered this fate? "I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? "I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." And He began telling this parable: "A man had a fig tree which had been planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and did not find any. "And he said to the vineyard-keeper, 'Behold, for three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree without finding any. Cut it down! Why does it even use up the ground?' And he answered and said to him, 'Let it alone, sir, for this year too, until I dig around it and put in fertilizer; and if it bears fruit next year, fine; but if not, cut it down.'" (NOM Gospel, Luke 13:1-9, verse 3 may be omitted)

    The Gospels for the two liturgies are different. While that in the Traditional Rite covers the account of those who believe Christ casts out demons in the name of Satan, the Novus Ordo accounts Christ exhorting people to turn from their sinful practices. He talks about events that occurred in the Jews lifetimes, and then says while they were not greater sinners, unless we repent, we would suffer their same fate. On second thought, the Novus Ordo may state that if we don't repent, we shall suffer the same fate. Verse 3 is optional in the Novus Ordo. In response, many will point that the Gospel mentions Repentance later, and this is to remain in the Gospel. In response, I merely tell people to focus on what I had mentioned before, repetition being the mother of all learning. Why omit the call to repentance? The Traditional Gospel entails repentance, and also tells us of condemnation against those who profane Christ's teaching. If Christ is true, then those who bring charge against Him are in serious trouble, again, a reference to condemnation, something we find scant reference to in the Novus Ordo. Upon completion of this series, my colleague Jacob Michael will demonstrate these scant references in greater detail as he analyzes the Novus Ordo Lectionary, and shows just what is and is not optional in the Novus Ordo. The results are staggering. Ambiguity reigns supreme in the NOM.

OFFERTORY:   Psalm 18: 9-12 48

Justiae Domini rectae, laetificantes corda, et judicia ejus dulciora super mel et favum : nam et servus tuus custodit ea.

The justices of the Lord are right, rejoicing hearts, and His judgments are sweeter than honey and the honey-comb; for Thy servant keepeth them.

    "Lord, by the grace of this sacrifice may we who ask forgiveness be ready to forgive one another. We ask this in the name of Jesus the Lord. Amen." (NOM, Prayer over the Gifts)


Haec hostia, Domine, quaesumus, emundet nostra delicta : et ad sacrificum celebrandum, subditorum tibi corpora, mentesque sanctificet. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum, Filius tuus Dominus noster, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus,
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.

May this victim, we beseech Thee, O Lord, cleanse away our sins, sanctifying Thy servants in both soul and body for the celebration of this sacrifice. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
Forever and ever.

    Comparing these Propers at times becomes a tedious task, and we are only 4 installments into the work. The Traditional Proper outlines explicitly the sacrifice we offer (this victim), that our sins be washed away, we be sanctified, and that God accepts our offering, so we may offer ourselves to God. Sanctification from sin, propitiation, and the cleansing nature of sacrifice, some of the many things that would seem to be anathema to the Novus Ordo Missae. All the Novus Ordo speaks about is the grace of the sacrifice, focusing again on the expiatory work of the sacrifice, and forgetting the propitiatory aspect, which we covered in the Second Sunday of Lent.

COMMUNION:   Psalm 83: 4-5

Passer invenit sibi domum, et turtur nidum, ubi reponat pullos suos : altaria tua, Domine virtutum, Rex meus, et Deus meus: beati qui habitant in domo tua, in saeculum saeculi laudabunt te.

The sparrow hath found herself a house, and the turtle a nest, where she may lay her young ones : Thy altars, O Lord of Hosts, my King, and My God : blessed are they that dwell in Thy house, they shall praise Thee for ever and ever.

    "The sparrow has found herself a house, and the turtle a nest, where she may lay her young ones : Your altars, O Lord of Hosts, my King, and My God : blessed are they that dwell in Your house, they shall praise You for ever and ever." (Prayer after Communion, NOM)

    For once both Communion verses are in sync. This is no surprise since there is no mention of atonement or repentance in this verse. We shall now focus on the Postcommunion for each liturgy.


A cunctis nos, quaesumus, Domine, reatribus et periculis propitiatus absolve : quos tanti mysterii tribus esse participles. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum. Qui vivis et regnas in cum Deo Patri in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, unum Deum.
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.

Mercifully absolve us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from all guilt and deliver us from all danger whom Thou doest grant to partake of so great a mystery. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
For ever and ever.
R. Amen.

    "Lord, in sharing this sacrament may we receive your forgiveness and be brought together in unity and peace. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen." (Prayer after Communion, NOM)

    The Novus Ordo Proper does not talk about the fact that without God, we are slaves to sin. It is by the Eucharist and God's mercy that these chains are broken, so that we may arise from deadness of our nature to serve the living God. The Novus Ordo does not mention that partaking in these mysteries is a privilege, not a right. Many today simply believe that by being Catholic, we have a right to receive the Eucharist. We must first note that if we do not receive communion, this does not invalidate the Mass. We would be quite arrogant if we believed it did. Furthermore, only those who are baptized Catholics in a state of grace may receive the Blessed Sacrament. A state of grace entails having no mortal sin not confessed. Mortal sins are those sins which lead to damnation.

    We must also focus on the fact that the reception of the sacrament is not the issue in the Proper of the Novus Ordo, but the simple "sharing" of the sacrament, whatever that is. The sacrament sounds more like a meal, rather than our participation in the propitiatory sacrifice. While both liturgies mention peace as one of the ends of receiving (or sharing) the sacrament, the Traditional Proper talks about being preserved from the dangers of body and soul. One has a very hard time finding prayers in the Novus Ordo that deal with souls. The Traditional answer to Dominus Vobiscum(The Lord be with you) has been Et Cum spiritu tuo (and with your spirit.) The Novus Ordo changes it to "And also with you", leaving out the part about spirit. This fear of mentioning soul once again rears its ugly head in the Propers.

    It seems that for this Sunday, liturgical reform meant doing away with anything having to do with repentance, humility, shame outside of God's grace, preservation of temporal adversities from reception of a sacrament, and preservation of eternal adversities to one's soul.

    I conclude with a question. How do these omissions bring about authentic liturgical reform, which entails better worship of God, and better instruction for the faithful in the Catholic religion? For almost 40 years we Traditionalists have been seeking an answer to this question, and last time I checked, we still don't have an answer. The faithful who read this and who care about our liturgy (as do many devout Catholics attending the Novus Ordo) should ask themselves this question, seriously ask. If you have no answer, then the only answer can be that only in the Traditional Latin Mass is the TRUE ANSWER.

NEXT: Comparing the Propers of Lent: Laetare Sunday

    March 27, 2004
    vol 15, no. 87
    Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi