It is interesting, as reported in Sandro Magister's "Chiesa" online newsletter (click on this post's title), that at his first public appearance in his new capacity, on April 27, Archbishop Ranjith spoke at the Augustinian Institute of Rome about Father Uwe Lang's 2004 book, Turning Towards the Lord: Orientation in Liturgical Prayer.
The Archbishop quoted from then-Cardinal Ratzinger's Introduction to the 2004 book:
“To the ordinary churchgoer, the two most obvious effects of the liturgical reform of the Second Vatican Council seem to be the disappearance of Latin and the turning of the altars towards the people. Those who read the relevant texts will be astonished to learn that neither is in fact found in the decrees of the Council. The use of the vernacular is certainly permitted, especially for the Liturgy of the Word, but the preceding general rule of the Council text says, ‘Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites’ (Sacrosanctum Concilium, 36.1). There is nothing in the Council text about turning altars towards the people; that point is raised only in postconciliar instructions.”
It is nice to reflect on these words, to remember that the man who wrote them is now the Pope and to realize that the one quoting them is assistant to the Church's "chief liturgist." May the long-awaited "reform of the reform" come about everywhere, including Los Angeles!
[A big thank-you to commenter Jeff Miller, who kindly wrote to say that Cardinal Arinze is still the head of the Congregation and Archbishop Ranjith is the Congregation's secretary. I have updated the post above to reflect Jeff's heads-up. As the saying goes, "Even Homer nods."]