As readers surely know, Benedict XVI endeared himself to a certain element of the faithful with his 2007 motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum. Briefly put, SP loosened the reins on the use of the 1962 Missal, which is often (and inaccurately) called the Tridentine Mass, and more accurately the Extraordinary Form. John Paul II had issued a 1984 indult and a 1988 motu propriu which moved in the same direction, but SP has widely been treated as a stronger statement.
Benedict has not, so far, achieved the rock-star status that his predecessor enjoyed with the mass media, and he probably never will. But among enthusiasts of the pre-Vatican II liturgy, he is Elvis and the Beatles combined. We ourselves, who have no dog in the the fight of Romish liturgical law, find his Spirit of the Liturgy a profound and provocative book, as illuminating as it is frustrating.
Imagine, then, the shockwaves in the traditionalist interwebs as a rumor spreads that there are plans for an official Instruction on Summorum Pontificum, which would "interpret" the document in such a fashion as to strip it of any meaningful effect. The rumor seems to have surfaced on Rorate Caeli, which has issued an "urgent call for action." Such action was originally proposed to be a campaign of letters to various officials, and has now taken the form of an online petition, in several languages (of which Latin, ironically, is not one).
Hunwicke signed the thing, even though he's (still) an Anglican. We ourselves will not, both because we don't really care and because it is none of our beeswax. Still, our Papist reader -- if indeed we have one -- might want to look into this.
It should be noted that the entire discussion is, thus far, of a rumor. There may be nothing to it. And indeed, it seems unlikely that the same very bright fellow who wrote SP would then turn around and eviscerate it. But who knows what goes on in the bowels of the Vatican? Sometimes, when dealing with the mysteries of the Curia, "rumor" is another word for "trial balloon." But sometimes it is just something somebody made up, and there's no good way to tell.
As good Evangelicals, we don't believe that worship is properly a matter of law at all, and we most certainly do not believe that Christian unity requires ceremonies instituted by men be everywhere alike. Honestly, we don't even want them to be. But we are interested in this story, for several reasons. First, because we love to see the traddies get their knickers in a twist; second, because we truly are interested in the emerging shape of Roman Catholic worship in the new century; and above all, because we ourselves have seen several iterations of liturgical reform, some of which now stand in urgent need of reconsideration (ELW Psalter, anybody?), and we'd like to see how somebody else handles it.