Signs of the endtimes? So we're told, and if that's the case, we may be heading that way. If there is any truth to the rumors that began circulating a few days ago, we're in for the Mother of All Liturgy Wars (MOALW), as it was "leaked" in the Italian Press by a "source close to the Vatican" that there may be an effort originating from the Holy See and the CDWDS to mandate that the consecration formula as well as other sacramental formulae for Baptisms, Confirmation and confession be said in Latin. During Mass. Everywhere in the World. Including the US.
Call me a sceptic, but I think this might not be too well received in some circles. There have also been numerous comments across the blogs that this seems to far "out there" to be anything but a wild rumor. While I agree that it is a bold move, I for one think that this may well be coming our way. Why? Because this is an issue that Benedict has spoken about often in his writings and statements, and it is a move which he has good reason to make at this time.
Consider the convergence of several disparate events: The issue of discussions with the SSPX regarding a return to full communion, the recent re-introduction of communion kneeling received on the tongue at Papal Masses and the One Year anniversary of Summorum Pontificum. Each of these events, decidedly important, would have been considered highly unlikely only a short while ago. They are all tied closely to the issue of a return to tradition. And, they are all connected to issues that arose from the "hermeneutic of rupture" that Benedict has spoken about in relation to the post Vatican II liturgy.
So too for the issue of the Latin language at Mass. In Sacramentum Caritatis, Pope Benedict spoke at length about the importance of the Latin language, not only as a traditional element of liturgy, but as a way of assuring the proper transmission of the faith. And at no point in the Mass is this so important as in the consecration formula. If there were to be a place in the Mass where the use of Latin for this purpose would be of greatest importance, that would be it. And this consideration, the proper transmission of the faith, is strengthened further by the recent squabbling over the translation of "pro multis" in the Eucharistic Prayer. As the ultimate arbiter of things liturgical, perhaps it is time for the Pope to step in and resolve this issue. That may be what is coming. That and the MOALW.