Update: Just four days in they are already making exceptions, or the rules are being broken.
I wanted to see for myself how the new permanent Mass restrictions looked in Saint Peter’s Basilica this morning. It was as sad as you might expect. If you are not mad about this, you should be.
A follow up to this article posted 10 days ago.
To follow up on a few comments…
The term “Private Mass” is greatly misunderstood. It does not only mean a priest celebrating alone, it means all Masses outside of the normal Mass schedule. Many of these Masses would have only a few people, some would have 100 people.
People attacking Private Mass and seeing this as a win, will be shocked to learn that Private Masses are still allowed, but only in the Grottos.
Group and Pilgrim Masses, also considered Private Mass, although anyone can join, are still allowed, but only in the Grottos.
Priests can still offer Mass in Saint Peter’s Basilica, but only in Italian, and only concelebrating at a designated altar at a set time. Otherwise, a chapel in the Grottos can be requested.
This is not an attack on the Extraordinary Form of the Latin Mass. Though more were possible and certainly did happed, there was usually only ONE regular EF Mass offered each morning. There were around FORTY Novus Ordo Masses offered each morning. This is an attack on everyone.
This new ban / restriction affects every Mass outside of the normal Mass schedule. The church did add a few Masses in the morning for concelebrants.
It is now impossible to visit Saint Peter’s Basilica in the early morning hours and find a Mass in your native language, unless your native language is Italian.
Some argue that “Private Masses” were too exclusive, and this change is for the better. I can only imagine the people saying this have never been to Saint Peter’s Basilica in the morning and have never traveled on a group pilgrimage. If anything, moving the Private Masses into the Grotto will make them more exclusive, as now people will need to know how to get down there, and usually one can only go in if accompanied by a priest with a reservation.