But what (I can hear you thinking!) does St. Bernard, a Cistercian monk in the 12th century, have to do with the traditional Latin Mass ? The connection is elucidated by Fr. Cassian Folsom -- abbot of the Benedictine monks of Norcia, but haling from our very own Red Hook, NY -- in a piece entitled "Cultus, Culture, and Counterculture" in a recent edition of the Adoremus Bulletin. He writes: "In the Middle Ages, the monastic culture was perhaps the highest expression of what the Catholic culture in general aspired to be: a holy order with God as the center....Monastic life is God-centered, theocentric. Our society is anthropocentric, with the focus on the individual. This contrast is often experienced in the liturgy. As I have argued elsewhere, many of the post-conciliar liturgical reforms were based on an Enlightenment anthropology, and when young people (with no nostalgic baggage of any kind) experience the traditional Mass in the Extraordinary Form, they see at once that this action, in the first place, is about God."
St. Bernard lived and breathed a monastic culture which, like the traditional Latin Mass, is fundamentally oriented to God. jab