A correspondent and I were recently musing over the abolition of the vivacious, rich, and Paschal-like Roman vigil Mass of Pentecost in the "EF" rite, the 1962 liturgy. As one familiar with both the Pauline and the Pian/Johannine books will know, the 1970 books removed much ancient material and yet, in a twist of irony, re-inserted some other texts and rites that were cast aside under Pius XII. Pentecost exemplifies this queer phenomenon.
In 1951 Pius XII created the Easter Vigil as we know it today. He and his commission revised it the following year. Originally the Easter Vigil eliminated Vespers entirely in favor of a Communion verse. The renovators put psalm 116 back into the rite in 1952, but turned it into Lauds (????) and scrapped Compline, Mattins, and [real] Lauds. Also in 1952 celebration of the Pentecost vigil was automatically suppressed whenever the Easter Vigil had been celebrated, likely to avert Catholics from the fact that the sacred rites of Pentecost resembled most closely the sacred rites of Holy Saturday. Everyone would favor the shorter, easier Pian novelty, making the elimination of the old rite's unique ceremonies seamless.
Now the Pauline Missal allowed for an "extended" Pentecost vigil Mass with four Old Testament prophecies, something of a restoration in principle, although given the very different Ordo Missae one can hardly call it a complete restoration. Buyer's remorse?
Then there is the elimination of the octave in the Pauline rite, preserved in the 1962 rite. It was the second most important, and certainly the most beautiful, octave after that of Pascha. My correspondent did note the logic in axing the octave, that Pentecost is the 50th day and not the 51st, 52nd, 53rd etc. I would respond by noting that an octave is an extended celebration of one feast and that Pentecost, above any other feast, deserves an octave celebration. It is the Holy Spirit creating and re-creating for the first time since the creation of the world. The Resurrection happened on the eighth day of the week and Pentecost, as I said two posts ago, makes the Resurrection permanent in the world. The plunging of the Paschal fire into the Baptismal font means all who bath in the waters of regeneration are plunged into the Resurrection. We eventually agreed upon the matter.
Why does it have to be one or the other? Why must we have either the old Ordo and octave with no vigil or the new Ordo with a vigil and no octave? Were I a parish priest, and I am certainly not, I would not have the slightest hesitation about observing the un-reformed vigil and the full octave!