Sir, Fr Fitzsimmons is beginning to sound like a Scottish extra from the film Braveheart so valiant is he in defence of his beloved colleagues at ICEL. His overt invitation to correspondents to re-open the debate on his favourite subject is too tempting to ignore. I wonder if he would be good enough to respond to the following points:
1. The original response of the column which Fr Fitzsimmons criticised did not spend an inordinate amount of space "attacking ICEL". The main point of the column was to explicate why the blessing does not appear in the modern Mass.
2. Fr Fitzsimmons then says that the column did not answer the reader's question. The whole column was devoted to the matter. It explained that the word for blessing beriedixit does appear in the Roman Rite in Eucharistic prayers one, three and four. It is for ICEL not Fr Barrett to explain its omissions.
3. He then takes issue with the use of the word "traditional" for the Tridentine Rite, but the reader who originally wrote into the Herald used the expression because it was popular, Fr Fitzsimmons' response was fatuous.
4. Furthermore, he suggested that Fr Barrett needed to do his homework. I think not. He covered all the points the reader made. Perhaps Fitzsimmons' defence of ICEL is grounded on one simple fact; that the Roman Rite had to be dumbed down in order to accommodate a liturgy based on the spurious myth of accessibility. Catherine Pickstock, the philosopher, has recently pointed out that liturgy transcends ordinary language. The whole point about the word benedixit showed that there is a problem with the ICEL texts.
5. Fr Fitzsimmons has yet to respond to the criticisms of Cardinal Medina about the work of ICEL, namely their production of unauthorised texts, their rnis-translation of key liturgical terms and the extraordinary delays in producing appropriate translations. ICEL's marriage rites were sent back from Rome with 301 corrections. Is this a sign of ICEL's efficiency? The question demands an answer. And if you don't mind no politics please. 6. Fr Fitzsimmons doth protest too much methinks (Hamlet Act 3 scene 2).
MARGARET ANDERSON, Kettering, Northants.