Thursday, August 8, 2013

The CTO and the Martyrology

The 2004 MR available from Pax Book
A necessary situation arises with the daily entries of the Roman Martyrology vis-a-vis this new endeavor of the CTO, in particular its treatment of the Sanctorale. The 1962 Martyrologium Romanum (MR for short, not to be confused with the Missale for this entry) is the last, traditional (enough) edition of its kind, and this is which all those bound the the 1962 BR utilize at the Office of Prime. However, this poses a problem because of the relegation of a number of saints' feasts, present in the 1962 Kalendar, to non-general observance in the CTO. To date, the CTO hasn't included any references to the MR in its daily Ordo entries.

Let's look at two examples, from recent days.

1. A saint not observed universally in the CTO and whose date of death differs from his 1954/1962 day of liturgical observance. On 14 July, the CTO, in line with all Traditional Kalendars, observed the feast of St. Bonaventure (commemorated this year because of Sunday). In the 1962 MR entry for that date is next listed St. Henry, but then it is added that his feast is observed the following day, 15 July. For CTO purposes, we would need to omit that last phrase, unless a particular congregation will, in fact, celebrate the feast of St. Henry.

2. A saint not observed universally in the CTO whose date of death and 1954/1962 observance are the same day. On 7 August, read today at Prime, in the CTO is the feast of St. Donatus. In the 1954/1962 Kalendars, it is St. Cajetan. When reading the MR entry for this day, following the CTO would require one to reverse the order in which the entries for these two saints are listed.

These may seem simple enough, especially in the case of #2, but already a few instances have appeared in which the liturgical observance of a given saint is at an entirely different time of year than the dies natales over the last two months. We have yet to complete an annual proposed Sanctorale, so for the time being, we have been reading the entries as given, but it seems the best way to tackle this is to revise the entire MR and post it online for use. How are we always going to be cognizant that St. X who died in July may or may not have a feast in April? In fact, digressing a bit, we have considered undertaking a project to produce a CTO Breviarium and Antiphonale...check back in 20 years!

Anyway, the CTO is, naturally, not given to modernist/Protestant downgrading of the saints, so we will absolutely accord each saint his due in the MR; it is not our intent to downgrade the saints. Our philosophy is, rather, that not every saint, especially most canonized between 1570 and 1962, should merit a universal liturgical observance.

What other ideas/approaches would the readers have concerning adapting the 1962 Martyrology to the CTO Sanctorale? Should we even consider the 2004 MR as a contributing factor?


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