Being moved by the Spirit
In 1840 the Benedictine monk Dom Prosper Gueranger published his Les Institutions liturgiques [“liturgical
institutions”] , described as “a wonderful demonstration of the antiquity and the beauties of the Roman liturgy,” by Didier Bonnetere his 1980 book, The Liturgical Movement: Gueranger to Beauduin to Bugnini, Roots, Radicals Results.
Neo-Gallican refers to newly revived separatist liturgies in northern Europe, especially in France. Neo because Pius VI had struck a mighty blow to the separatist movement Gallicanism (French-ism) with his condemnation of the Synod of Pistoia in 1794 at a time when “the whole of Europe . . . was floundering in an “anti-liturgical heresy.” (Bonneterre)
Gueranger was on the side of traditionalist angels, standing up for the wisdom of the ages, opposing changes meant to keep up with the times, etc.
Primarily, he wanted to bring the clergy back to the Roman rite. By the time of his death in 1875, all the French dioceses had abandoned their separatist ways. Their liturgy, wrote a fellow Benedicine in 1948, was replete with “confession, prayer and praise, rather than instruction.” He had “rediscovered the liturgy . . . discerned [its] essence” as worship that “sings to God its faith, its hope, and its charity.” . . .