St. Pius V had the Roman Missal drawn up (as the present Apostolic Constitution itself recalls) so that it might be an instrument of unity
among Catholics. In conformity with the injunctions of the Council of Trent it was to exclude all danger, in liturgical worship, of errors
against the Faith, then threatened by the Protestant Reformation. The gravity of the situation fully justified, and even rendered
prophetic, the saintly Pontiff’s solemn warning given at the end of the Bull promulgating his Missal “should anyone presume to tamper with
this, let him know that he shall incur the wrath of God Almighty and his blessed Apostles, Peter and Paul. (Quo Primum, July 13, 1570)
When the Novus Ordo was presented at the Vatican Press Office, it was asserted with great audacity that the reasons which prompted the
Tridentine decrees are no longer valid. Not only do they still apply, but there also exist, as we do not hesitate to affirm, very much
more serious ones today.
It was precisely in order to ward off the dangers which in every century threaten the purity of the deposit of faith (depositum custodi,
devitans profanas vocum novitates” Tim. VI, 20) the Church has had to erect under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost the defences of her
dogmatic definitions and doctrinal pronouncements.
These were immediately reflected in her worship, which became the most complete monument of her faith. To try to bring the Church’s
worship back at all cost to ancient practices by refashioning, artificially and with that “unhealthy archeologism” so roundly condemned by
Pius XII, what in earlier times had the grace of original spontaneity means as we see today only too clearly - to dismantle all the
theological ramparts erected for the protection of the Rite and to take away all the beauty by which it was enriched over the centuries.
And all this at one of the most critical moments - if not the most critical moment - of the Church’s history!
Today, division and schism are officially acknowledged to exist not only outside of but within the Church. Her unity is not only
threatened but already tragically compromised. Errors against the Faith are not so much insinuated but rather an inevitable consequence of
liturgical abuses and aberrations which have been given equal recognition.
To abandon a liturgical tradition which for four centuries was both the sign and pledge of unity of worship (and to replace it with
another which cannot but be a sign of division by virtue of the countless liberties implicitly authorised, and which teems with
insinuations or manifest errors against the integrity of the Catholic religion) is, we feel in conscience bound to proclaim, an