The celebration of a Latin Mass, whether the Tridentine (now referred to as the Extraordinary Rite) or the Novus Ordo, is unusual in the Anglican tradition. From the very beginning, however, Anglicanism never completely “outlawed” the celebration of Mass in Latin. The stipulation was that it needed to be intelligible to those who participated, so its use was primarily among the academic circles in Cambridge and Oxford. Although the Tridentine rite (from the Council of Trent) was not the Mass in use at the time of the English reformation, its use has become more universal.
So, why do we celebrate the Tridentine Latin Mass? Latin had been the language in use throughout the Western Church almost since its foundation (in the very early days it was Greek). Latin has been used in the rites of the Western Church since at least the fourth century, if not earlier. There are many reasons why Latin should still play an important part in the liturgy of today’s Church.
Here is a wonderful study of the traditional Mass – Layman’s Guide to the Traditional Mass
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