This question is about proper use of terminology within the Roman Catholic church today. As a non-Catholic I am sometimes bewildered when the 6 terms "liturgy", "rite", "order", "form", "mass", and "missal" are modified by
- species-differentiating adjectives such as "Roman", "Tridentine", "Latin", etc.
- function-differentiating adjectives such as "Requiem", "Solemn", "High"/"Low", etc.
It would be nice to have a short answer that serves as a glossary (with examples) to clarify:
The primary meaning of each noun. Example:
- "missal" seems to refers to the book containing the words (plus music notation?) for a mass, to be differentiated from "sacramentary", "breviary", and "lectionary" (the distinction between the 4 is clear enough to me)
- "mass" refers to the performance of a specific liturgy / rite
The precise aspect that the combination of adjective and noun refers too.
Maybe defining the terms using the Latin roots of each of the 6 words will help. BUT an answer would be really unhelpful if it says "liturgy" and "rite" is interchangeable; rather it should identify the circumstances where using one term over the other is NOT interchangeable.
Example usages that an answer might want to clarify:
What of the distinction between "liturgy" and "rite"? Wikipedia article on Roman Rite starts with a sentence:
The Roman Rite (Latin: Ritus Romanus) is the primary liturgical rite of the Latin Church, the largest of the sui iuris particular churches that comprise the Catholic Church.
and the Wikipedia article on Pre-Tridentine Mass starts with:
Pre-Tridentine Mass refers to the variants of the liturgical rite of Mass in Rome before 1570, when, with his bull Quo primum, Pope Pius V made the Roman Missal, as revised by him, obligatory throughout the Latin Church, except for those places and congregations whose distinct rites could demonstrate an antiquity of two hundred years or more.
In both articles the terms "liturgy" and "rite" are conflated together.
If "rite" is the prescription, why do we hear "High Mass" a lot but not "High liturgy" or "High rite" even though the prescription for celebrating the mass is different?
What's the connotation of "order" in "Novus Ordo Missae (New Order of the Mass). Why not say "New liturgical rite of mass"?
What's the connotation of "form" as in "Extraordinary Form" that seems to be used synonymously with "Traditional Latin Mass" or "Traditional Rite" (see the first sentence of this article)?