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VATICAN CITY – Fans of the old Latin Mass are descending on Rome for their annual pilgrimage yet they are facing indifference, if not outright resistance to their cause, from Pope Francis.
Ten years after Pope Benedict XVI passed a law allowing greater use of the pre-Vatican II Latin Mass, Francis seems to be doing everything possible to roll it back or simply pretend it never happened.
In recent weeks, he has affirmed with "magisterial authority" that the Vatican II reforms allowing for Mass to be celebrated in the vernacular rather than Latin were "irreversible." More recently, he gave local bishops' conferences authority to oversee those translations rather than the Vatican.
In many ways, these liturgy wars provide a microcosm of the battle lines drawn between traditionalist Catholics and Francis.