A fellow Catholic, and co-writer on the blog All Along the Watchtower, Scoop had recommended me to read a speech written by an excommunicated Archbishop named LeFebvre. I always find it ironic that many ‘traditionalists’ use the word heretic in regards to reformist such as Luther or Calvin but always praise this excommunicate as their personal hero, one that disobeyed a canonized saint of the Church.
So, a document provided by a priest by the name of Fr Richard Heilman, who publishes books under a press named ‘Deus vult,’ claims to be a primary source document of Lefebvre. A document that explains what occurred during the Vatican II Council especially the liturgical changes. A document that describes the mass, more or less, of being a product of Free Masonry.
Okay, so with my basic historical understanding, I took a look at the document with the eyes and tools of a historian. Every single document, including this one, has a purpose–an agenda. So, in the document, one that largely points to Msg. Bugnini as the source for all the changes of the liturgy, I looked for two names: Cardinal Larraona and Fr. Ferdinando Antonelli, the strange part is that neither one of these names occurs once from Lefebvre.
Examining the First Period of the council in January of 1962, Cardinal Gaetano Cicognani (appears twice in the Lefebvre document) was the prefect of the Congregation of Rites during which time Fr. Annebale Bugnini coordinated a 65 memeber and consultant for a commission on the liturgy. On 2/1/62 the Sacrosanctum was ready for the council after Cardinal Cicognani signed off on it. Yes, let me repeat, as Cardinal Cicognani signed off on it. After which time, Cardinal Cicognani was replaced by Pope St. John XXIII who appointed a new prefect by the name of Cardinal Larraona on 2/22/62.
Cardinal Larranoa aligned with the conservatives in the Vatican, which would no doubt be Lefebvre and company–strange how he would leave his name out of the conversation–in which Larranoa replaced Fr. Bugnini as secretary with Fr. Fernanado Antonelli because Larranoa thought Bugnini too progressive for the position. On October, 22, 1962 Cardinal Larranoa with Fr. Antonelli announced Sacrosanctum Concilium to the Council. The conservative appointee, Fr. Antonelli, explained to the council that the faithful had become “mute spectators,” and reminded them of the liturgical development that had first occurred under Pope Pius X. Therefore, this document was in this same tradition.
The document that had been presented by Cardinal Larranoa and Fr. Antonelli was approved by the Central Preparatory Commission with little changes by the council. What is most telling is that the final vote of the Council Fathers in regard to the first document of Vatican II was that it was a landslide: 2,147 to 4.
Only after the presentation of the document by the conservative camp and the vote did Pope Paul VI name Fr. Bugnini as secretary of the commission to implement Sacrosanctum Concilium. If nothing else, it shows, that those on the more traditional side of the debate hands are just as dirty as they accuse others.