Alice von Hildebrand # 3 Silence and Contemplation

Continuation of the article by Alice von Hildebrand from the Latin Mass Magazine Spring 2010.  This is on the importance of quiet contemplation that Catholics no longer are exposed to.  The contemplative life (life of silent prayer) is higher than the active life (helping the poor, teaching, working).

Birnau 3“We no longer understand the key value of Silence – so crucial in any religious, and even human life.  Malls, department stores, food stores are constantly blasting what is called music, but which is nothing but Noise.  Our ears are used to dehumanize us.  It actually threatens our mental sanity.

The blessed silence of the Traditional Mass not only emanates sacredness, but also is a balm healing our battered senses, allowing us to “listen” to the divine message.  What a world of difference between the racket and clatter forced upon us where ever we go (some times, alas, at Mass) and the sublime notes of the Gregorian chant which, I trust, will be also heard in Heaven.  Hell is a place of pandemonium.  Silence is prohibited by satanic laws.

DelacroxiMoreover, the Traditional Mass is a most perfect expression of our Faith: built up through centuries of prayer and contemplation.  To know the Mass is to know one’s Faith.  This is why when a Priest tells me to my face that he is opposed to the Traditional Mass “because he is opposed to it’s theology,” I have reason for concern.

One thing which has preoccupied me from 1969 on is that those (whether Bishops, Priests, or lay people) who are fiercely antagonistic to the “old” (in the negative sense) Mass are often the very same people who dissent from Church teaching starting with their opposition to Humanae Vitae – the first link in a chain of disastrous attacks on the natural law the Church’s holy teachings (let us recall the tempest triggered by Humanae Vitae) – and who favor (in the name of justice and democracy) the ordination of some while denigrating the awesome privilege of women to give life.  This is an observation that I submitted to then Cardinal Ratzinger whom I had the privilege of seeing several times before he became pope (and once afterward in a private audience).  I have reasons to assume that he saw the point I was trying to make.

tumblr_mavi7yEy8N1rwzzkbo1_1280How grateful we should be that His Holiness has such a deep sense for the value of Tradition and has given us the Motu Proprio allowing all Priests to say the Mass that means so much in their spiritual life and that was unjustly prohibited by some Bishops who lost their footing in the wake of Vatican II which triggered a sort of tsunami.  We were constantly told that changes were required by the Council; in fact there was not a word of truth in this.  Vatican II never said the altars should be destroyed, that only the vernacular should be used.  It was permitted for some parts of the Mass….and all of a sudden Latin disappeared altogether.  Clearly the Devil is no linguist.  Pope Benedict’s pontificate will go down in history as the great “rebuilder” – for he is giving us back our inheritance.  We should express our thanks to his Holiness.