The scope of this modest treatise is to refute the prevailing misconceptions about Liturgy, Tradition, Magisterium and Authority in the Church that are so pervasive and causing such confusion in the Church. Although volumes could be written on any one of these subjects, what is most lacking today is a clear understanding of what is most basic and fundamental about Church teaching concerning Liturgy, Tradition and Magisterium.
The Magisterium is the vehicle that accomplishes the actual ‘handing down’ of Tradition, and the Liturgy is the most important organ of the ordinary Magisterium. The confused notion of Magisterium that prevails in the post-conciliar Church underlies the doctrinal crisis and liturgical abuses which have become the principal marks of recognition for the so-called ‘Conciliar Church’.
That the doctrinal confusion has reached its height is attested to by the fact that even a Cardinal of the Roman Church admits that the problem of the liturgy is “very disturbing”, but then justifies the status quo with a vague appeal to obedience to the Magisterium. Yet it is precisely the teaching of the Church’s past Magisterium which condemns the liturgy presently being used in our churches for not adequately professing the Catholic Faith, for not adhering to Catholic Tradition, and for compromising the validity of the sacraments.
Fundamentally new concepts of tradition and magisterium combined with a new liturgy have established a trend in the Church — a trend which has brought about a transformation of the formerly unmistakably recognisable Catholic Church into the evolving Church of the new Reformation. Unless that trend will have been checked and reversed, only a remnant of the former religion shall remain — a small, scattered but vital remnant of Catholicism surrounded by the colossus of Roman Protestantism.
It is my hope that this little book will be able to deliver, as a clear message, the answer to the rhetorical question asked some years ago by Archbishop Lefebvre: “Must we become Protestant in order to remain Catholic?” The Reformers were Catholics who became Protestant by abandoning the unchangeable Catholic Tradition. That is the essence of Protestantism. We may never abandon tradition in the name of an ill-conceived obedience, because we can only remain Catholic so long as we continue to “stand fast and hold the traditions”. (2 Thessalonians 2:14)