says Cardinal BY A STAFF REPORTER
IT would have been foolhardy to introduce all the liturgical changes at once, says Cardinal Heenan in a pastoral letter to be read in all churches in the Archdiocese of Westminster on Sunday.
Some enthusiasts had said that the bishops were "dragging their feet," but it was obviously wiser to change gradually and gently. If all the changes had been introduced together people would have been shocked. Now the final stage of reform was about to be reached and people would experience no difficulty.
"Between now and Lent," writes the Cardinal, "your priest wilt be giving several instructions on the liturgy. Its shape will remain much the same, but the Mass will become simpler and a' little shorter.
"There will be more variety in the Scripture readings and the congregations will be more united with the priest. Thus the priest and people in future will recite the 'I confess' together. That is an example of the sensible changes you will find in this final reform of the Mass."
you will appreciate it. Once more we shall have cause to thank God for the Second Vatican Council."
While defending the liturgical reforms the Cardinal declares: "The present is no time for our Church to lose its universal language. Travel is no longer the monopoly of the rich. Many of you have been abroad, if only to Lourdes. I hope that Catholics everywhere will be able to sing the Credo together in Latin.
"It would be sad if the Council's determination to keep Latin as the language of the Roman rite were to he obstructed. That is why in the Westminster diocese the parishes had at least one Latin Mass every Sunday, not that this alone would preserve the ' Latin liturgy."
The Cardinal explains that in speaking of "final" reform he is referring to the Ordinary of • the Mass. He felt there would probably he no further revision of it until, in the course of centuries, language and social customs required it. He does not suggest that the liturgy will become completely rigid.
"There will, 1 hope, he new forms of the Mass devised for young children, the sick, the deaf and the dumb, the blind and perhaps for other special groups.
. "Your Sunday Mass," he says, "will not be changed again in your lifetime. In a short time you will become familiar with the new Ordinary of the Mass and I am sure that
`Why I cancelled article'
CARDINAL HEENAN decided not to write an article on the "permissive society" for the News of the World after the announcement of the publication of Christine Keeler's memoirs "entirely for the sake of Mr. Profumo," he said on the David Frost Show last Saturday.
"Most papers in the country have asked for the article, so I may go into journalism in a big way," he added.
He was not against Miss Keeler writing her memoirs, but felt there was a distinction between producing a book and writing an article for a newspaper which goes into some eight million homes.
The Cardinal said he did not know Mr. Profumo, but knew of his work in the East End of London among the poor.