I’m sorry to say, but Andy and the neo-conservatives that often make this same "it was all a misunderstanding" argument are living in a fantasy world. The facts reveal that Sacrosanctum Concilium is a radical document that was written by radicals and for radicals, in order to bring about radical changes in the Church. True, it is a clever piece of work that managed to pull the wool over the eyes of many a Council father, and it is obvious it is still doing the same today.
Lets look at these plain facts.
Consider this curious little fact: Why is it that the only preparatory schema of the Council to be retained was the one for Sacrosanctum Concilium? It doesn't take much digging to figure out why this schema, unlike all the others, was retained by the Rhinelanders who managed to "usurp" the council. That particular schema was drafted by the radical left: Bugnini, Capelle, Botte, Martimort, Hanggi, Gy, Jounel. All of them radicals, schooled in the Beauduin camp. Can anything good come from the likes of those characters? The only liturgical conservative on the commission was Cardinal Cicognani, who refused to sign the schema until he was forced to do so by Pope John XXIII.
Now consider the Constitution’s actual characteristics (a few more inconvenient facts for neo-consersatives).
1. It is an outline only, non-specific, and vague. It states to only lay down the main features of a liturgical doctrine, the specifics of which are to be worked out at a later date, a notion that was taken to extremes by the Consilium that considered this a blank check. See paragraphs 44-45.
2. It called for a number of fundamental changes that when considered in toto affects the very nature of the Church and ecclesial life: revision of the ritual of the Mass (para. 50), a new rite of concelebration (para. 58), revision of the rites of Baptism (para. 66), Confirmation (para. 71), Penance (para. 72), Ordination (para. 76), Marriage (para. 77), and sacramentals (para. 79). How can there not be radical changes in the Church after revising all the fundamental rites of the Church’s liturgical life? How can this document be considered anything but radical?
3. It calls for a compromise between traditionalism and progressivism, seeking to somehow balance the two against each other. In reality the document tips the scales in favor of progressivism in such a way that traditionalists would not notice immediately. The document pays lip service, in a very non-specific way, to certain fundamental principles of the liturgy, but spells out absolutely no practical applications of these fundamental principles. At the same time, the document spells out precise practical applications of progressive ideas particularly in relation to worship becoming teaching in the liturgy (para. 33), and in regards to the use of Latin (para. 36, 54, 101).
The basic concepts that have destroyed the liturgical life of the Church were established in Sacrosanctum Concilium: liturgy was to become didactic, evolutionary, democratic, and free. One can have a “traditional” interpretation of the document, but given who wrote the document, and what it actually says, the so-called “progressive” or “liberal” interpretation is the more honest one. This so-called traditional interpretation is alien to Sacroscantum Concilium. This document was created by progressive radicals, for progressive radicals, and the progressive radical results, which are everywhere evident in the modern Church, it is these results that are the overwhelming evidence that punches the neo-conservatives right in the gut every time they attempt to make the “wrong interpretation” argument.
No, the vandals of 1970, and the vandals of 1989, those who wrecked by beloved alma mater’s main chapel, were interpreting Sacrosanctum Concilium exactly as it was intended by those who drafted it.
Which brings us back to my original objection. Why are we so concerned about doing what Vatican II intended? We tried that. Look where it has gotten us: liturgical and doctrinal and moral confusion, the rock mass, empty pews, no vocations, sisters in pants suits, gay priests molesting teenage boys, bishops with child porn on their computers, etc., etc., etc. Instead, how about being concerned with what Our Blessed Lord teaches us in the whole glorious 2000 year history of Holy Mother Church?
I'm tired of people in the Church living as though they were stuck in 1965, attempting to interpret and re-interpret, and then interpret the re-interpretation all over again. When the Church teaches authentically, confusion is dispelled, not increased. So, how about we all put that sad event behind us and move on?