Cardinal Raymond Burke believes that the “excessive” use of concelebration – the practice of priests saying Mass collectively – can result in their unique role in the sacred liturgy being obscured, reports the Catholic News sagency.
“I don’t think there should be an excessive encouragement of concelebration because the norm is for the individual priest to offer the holy sacrifice of the Mass,” the head of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura told CNA on Monday.
“If it is repeated too frequently, it can develop within him a sense of being another one of the participants instead of actually being the priest who is offering the Mass.”
One of the Catholic Church’s most senior American prelates spoke to CNA moments after addressing an international liturgical conference in the Irish city of Cork.
The three-day event, organised by the St. Colman’s Society for Catholic Liturgy, explored the issue of “Celebrating the Eucharist: Sacrifice and Communion.”
The former Archbishop of St Louis worried that, whereas the priest’s action is distinct, he “can seem to be participating in the Mass in the same manner as the congregation” if he concelebrates too often.
“That’s the danger I see in excessive concelebration,” he said.
The cardinal’s words of caution echo comments made recently by the head of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship, Cardinal Antonio Cañizares.
He told a gathering at Rome’s University of the Holy Cross in March that that the “widening of the faculty to concelebrate needs to be moderated, as we can see when we read the (Second Vatican) Council texts.”
FULL STORY Cardinal Burke cautions against over-use of concelebration (CNA)