June 22, 2007
vol 18, no. 173

The Long and Short of It

    In this time when Ratzinger is trolling for traditionalists with the "promise" of a Motu Proprio to "free the Latin Mass" (which he has not the authority to do for it has been forever free since the infallible bull Quo Primum in 1570) and when the revelation is made that he secretly plotted as far back as 1982 to fuse the "missal of 1967" into the "Indult", it is time to revisit the whole validity/non validity issue and to not draw it out but cut to the chase to prove definitely that the consecration in Novus Ordo services is not only invalid, but what the late Father James F. Wathen called it: The Great Sacrilege.

      "So let me grant that if, indeed, the short form were to be used, the Mass would be valid. Will that help here? The problem with making such a jump to conclusion is that it fails to take into account the fact that in the Novus Ordo the "short form" is not being used at all."

    If the Short Form were Valid, Would that Make the Novus Ordo Valid? It is time that this grievous mistake be taken head on. I realize that there is a considerable controversy over whether the "short form" is enough or not, or if so, then under precisely what circumstances, and I realize that I am not about to solve that question here. But for the sake of this discussion, I am going to grant the theory that the short form "For this is the chalice of My Blood," would be sufficient for validity (along with "For this is My Body.").

    If this were the case, would that mean that the Novus Ordo would be valid even though it has "for all" where the Catholic Mass has "for many"? This is the mistake upon which such above quotes is based upon. "Hey, the entire short form, which is enough, is already there, so the sacrament is already performed and already valid. What does it matter what the priest says next?"

    So let me grant that if, indeed, the short form were to be used, the Mass would be valid. Will that help here? The problem with making such a jump to conclusion is that it fails to take into account the fact that in the Novus Ordo the "short form" is not being used at all.

    Let the "priest" write down on paper what he said at the last Novus Ordo service he celebrated. Does he put a period after "For this is the chalice of My Blood"? Does he start the next part with a new sentence? If indeed he did, you could make this case that at least his Novus Ordo service may have attained sacramental validity, providing all other conditions are met, and that the "short form" is indeed sufficient under the particular circumstances of the particular ceremony he used.

    But we all know he won't. The sentence isn't finished with the word "Blood." It continues with other words. Ergo, the short form has not been used, and with that all questions as to whether or not it could be valid, and if so, under what particular circumstances, is rendered entirely moot, with respect to the Novus Ordo. If the sentence does not end, then neither does the form.

    Let's illustrate this another way. In the case of consecrating the Host, "For this is My Body" is sufficient. No one doubts that. Can we therefore infer that it would be sacramentally valid for the Host to be "consecrated" with the words "For this is My Body, a Body that defies all material presence and leaves no footprints," (Gnostic heresy)? The whole form is there. Isn't that enough to guarantee validity? Obviously, it does matter what is said next, especially when the sentence does not end but continues with further words.

    In the above example, the "further words" of the sentence deny that Jesus Christ is Come in the Flesh, which would apply not only to His presence in and about Jerusalem back in the First Century, but equally today on the altars of the Church. Such an extension would amount to an implicit denial of the sacrament, and would invalidate it, despite the presence of all the necessary words in the correct order for the valid form (and I am assuming valid matter, minister, and intent for this short apologia, and also deliberately overlooking here similar problems relating to "the Mystery of Faith").

    So, it comes to this: Does making it "for all" constitute a denial of what was just said, as would redefining the Body to be a mere spirutual and nonmaterial presence would in my above example? "For all" is ambiguous. In the old days, before Vatican II, a priest would be instructed in his class on sacramental theology that "For you" meant either "you in this room" or "you fellow Jews" and that "for many" meant either "the rest of the Church over whom "you" have authority" or else the whole Church, both Jew and Gentile alike. This can be seen in The Catechism of the Council of Trent which discusses the whys and wherefores of the "for you" and the "for many," even explaining why the "for all" used back then by Lutherans (though it does not name them) was not acceptible.

    A devout and serious and sober priest, steeped with this training, would no doubt have said "for all" in the framework of this understanding, i. e. "for all" the Church, and thereby attain sacramental validity. However, in the Novus Ordo "seminaries," no such instruction in sacramental theology takes place. The supposedly consecrational words, when singled out for comment at all (extremely rare), are merely referred to as a "narrative" and no such details are ever brought out. The theologically ignorant boogerhead Novus Ordo seminarian has no understanding of "for all" but its apparent and more obvious meaning of "for all,' namely "for all the whole world, i. e. everyone."

    With that incorrect meaning, he violates the whole meaning and purpose of God's gift of the sacrament, namely that He meant it to be the sacrament of Unity. Not unity between the Church and the World, but unity of the Church within Herself and against the World. The sacrament of unity (the Eucharist) is meant to raise us up from the sordid world and set us apart from it. In that sacrament we are united to God, and in God to each other as fellow believers, to the saints in Heaven, and also the Church suffering in Purgatory. But we are set apart from this world, the flesh, and the Devil by it.

    To make it "for everyone" is to deny this and instead use it to drag us down to the level of the world, uniting us to the world, the flesh, and the Devil. For that reason, when the Novus Ordo formulation is used and the man means by "all" simply "everyone," that service is categorically invalid under all circumstances!

    So, a Novus Ordo can be said validly, but where is the priest to learn how to say it right? The Novus Ordo establishment will never teach him that. To get it right (and assuming he somehow got a valid ordination - for example, if ordained before 1968-70) he would have to do some extra curricular reading on his own. The Catechism of the Council of Trent would be enough, for it contains this information, but he will never have been encouraged to read that volume by any of his Novus Ordo "professors."

    Tradition has to find him. And then he, of his own initiative, has to put two and two together and realize what he must supply to make it valid, should he choose to do so. Otherwise, it might as well be a Lutheran service for all the validity it has.

Griff L. Ruby

      Griff's book is available from Books for $26.95 or can be read on-line at We at The Daily Catholic strongly urge you to share it with all you can for that could be the gentle shove that moves your friends back to where the True Faith resides forever, rooted in the Truths and Traditions of Holy Mother Church as Christ intended and promised.

    Griff Ruby's STRAIGHT STUFF
    June 22, 2007
    Volume 18, no. 173