Which constitution killed the Spanish language in the Philippines? A clarification

FILIPINO eSCRIBBLES

Many Hispanists blame the late president Cory Aquino for removing the Spanish language as an official Filipino language. But many individuals interested in this subject might start to wonder: why blame Tita Cory for the removal of the Spanish language when it seemed to be no longer official as far back as 1973 under Ferdinand Marcos?

This blogpost attempts to clarify the whole issue once and for all. It also provides some background of the Spanish language vis-à-vis the evolution of the Philippine Constitution.

The Spanish language during the days of empire

Since 24 June 1571 (the founding date of the Philippines), Spanish has been the official language of government and court offices. There was no written constitution back then since the Philippines was an overseas territory under the Spanish crown. But the Leyes de Indias (Laws of the Indies) oversaw the social, political, and economic life of Filipinos. Also…

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Why Aren’t More Masses Offered Ad Orientem?

liturgy guy

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This was the question that I recently posed to several priests: why aren’t more masses being offered ad orientem? As we have seen numerous books and articles in recent years convincingly argue for a return to ad orientem worship, it is unfortunate to see how few priests have actually returned to the traditional orientation. Despite well received scholarly works by Monsignor Klaus Gamber, Fr. Uwe Michael Lang, and Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger arguing in favor of it, few Catholics ever see the Novus Ordo offered ad orientem, with the notable exceptions of two dioceses: Arlington (Virginia) and Lincoln (Nebraska).

Discussing the topic with several diocesan priests, an explanation for the continuing reluctance to offer the Mass ad orientem can be broken out into five categories:

1. There are still priests who incorrectly believe that the Novus Ordo should only be offered versus populum (facing the people); often this is argued by…

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Cardinal Sarah’s Liturgical Earthquake

liturgy guy

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As many readers of this blog are aware of by now, the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments recently gave a groundbreaking interview on Catholic worship. Speaking to the French magazine Famille Chretienne, Robert Cardinal Sarah held nothing back about the need for the Church to return to offering the Holy Mass ad orientem. Rather than considering this simply to be a matter of preference, Cardinal Sarah sees it as nothing short of returning God to the center of the liturgy.

For decades many have been advocating for the return of this traditional orientation in the Mass. After all, the rapid and widespread embrace of versus populum worship immediately following the Second Vatican Council had nothing to do with the documents themselves. As even Cardinal Sarah notes in his interview:

“More than 50 years after the closure of Vatican II, it becomes…

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