The Hermeneutic of Traditionalism
After Pope Francis restricted the old Latin Mass this past summer, Shaun Blanchard wrote an excellent analysis in Church Life Journal titled, “Traditionis Custodes Was Never Merely About the Liturgy."
That article has stuck with me since then and I've finally written an extended commentary.
Pope Benedict spoke about how "two contrary hermeneutics” arose in the years after Vatican II: a “hermeneutic of discontinuity” and a “hermeneutic of reform.”
Traditionalists will cite Pope Benedict here to criticize Pope Francis and the liturgical reforms, but in doing so they fundamentally misunderstand Benedict and fall into their own kind of hermeneutic of discontinuity: the hermeneutic of traditionalism.
This false hermeneutic is rooted in the idea that Church teaching never changes and, unfortunately, it extends far beyond radical traditionalist circles. Many Catholics who attend the Vatican II liturgy and support and promote John Paul II and Benedict—many of whom even criticize “ Rad Trads” for their excesses—have fallen prey to this false hermeneutic.
Here’s my article: