Concerning the problem of the "una cum"
in the "Te igitur" of the canon of the mass
(transl. by Gladys Resch)
In his detailed explanations, referring to the fact that holy Mass can
only be said ab Ecclesia, Mgr. Guérard des Lauriers has proved that in
the "Te igitur" is expressed, who is the direct, real actual authorized
representative of the Church: the "una cum famulo tuo Papa nostro N."
does not only express the visible union of the faithful and priest with
their Head, but it means at the same time the actual, juristic
delegation of power of the celebration of the Mass by the Pope, whom
Christ has appointed as His representative here on earth. (Compare
EINSICHT X, 3 and 4).
To be able to express this mandate of the celebration of holy Mass ab
Ecclesia in todays religious and chaotic circumstances, Mgr. des
Lauriers suggested to pray "una cum sede apostolica" instead of "una
cum famulo tuo Papa nostro N.", by which the words "sede apostolica"
should be understood as the institution as such. By making out this
formula, Mgr. des Lauriers had considered that Wojtyla is in fact a
heretic materially but not formally. (N.b. this problem has in the
meantime been solved in all details, I hope.) To say the truth: the
learned Mgr. Himself was not quite happy about the suggestion to
express the mandate to say the Mass ab Ecclesia with the set form of
words "una cum sede apostolica".
How then can this problem be solved? The dogmatic demand of the Council
of Trent, that the Mass has to be said ab Ecclesia, still remains, even
in these confusing times. The examples of Écône and Palmar de Troya
show clearly where one goes astray if one does not bear in mind this
instruction. Where then is today for the holy Mass the mandatory real
Church, and how, respectively where is named the mandator in the "Te
We read in the "Ritus celbrandi missam" of the Missale Romanum,
published by Pius V: "Ubi dicit: una cum famulo tuo Papa nostra N.
exprimit nomen Papae: Sede autem vacante verba praedicta omittuntur."
(Where he says: una cum famulo tuo Pap nostro N., he pronounces clearly
the name of the Pope: but if the See is vacant, the usual laid down
words are omitted.) The same applies for the name of the resident
bishop. (Compare also Lurz, Wilhelm: "Ritus und Rubriken der Heiligen
Messe" (Rites and Rubrics of Holy Mass), Würzburg 1941, pg. 139) The
apostolic, respectively episcopate See is vacant a) at the physical or
b) moral death of the bearer of office; this moral death occurs when
the bearer falls into public, subborn heresy, respectively has
previously fallen into it. (Compare Rev. Dr. O. Katzer: "The vacant
apostolic See", EINSICHT VIII, pg. 68ff; as well CIC, Canon 188 Nr.4;
as will Paul IV's Papal bull: "Cum ex apostolatus officio".) This case,
that both, the apostolic as well as the episcopate See are vacant, is
the actual state today. (N.b. It should be noted for the Lefebvrists:
it is even not permitted to members of the Fraternity to name Lefebvre
in the "una cum ..." as "Antiste nostro", as he has no rights as
resident Ordinary! Compare A.A.S. XI, Rome 1919, page 145.)
Nowadays the part of the "Te igitur" should therefore be said: in
primis, quae tibi offerimus pro Ecclesia tua sancta catholica: quam
pacificare, custodire, adunare, et regere digneris toto orbe terrarum:
una cum omnibus orthodoxis atque catholicae, et apostolicae fidei
Cultoribus." (in unity with all orthodox faithful and all those who
promote the Catholic and Apostolic faith.) By those mentioned in this
way, the mandate, to say the Mass ab Ecclesia, is being accomplished,
and respectively by them the mandate is being represented in the
appropriate sense. One must retain a mind for the unity and simplicity
of the Catholic faith: this is the saying of the Holy Ghost! There is
no better answer to the difficult question, where the Church can be
Notice: Above article was
published in EINSICHT XI, 3rd of August, 1981. In spite of having got a
lot of bishops in the meantime, who administer the Sacraments,
the problem of the unity of the Church, her administration and the
jurisdiction of each individual bishop is not solved, which means: none
of those bishops may be mentioned as Resident Ordinary in the "Te
igitur" of the Canon.