The blogs are nearing saturation point on stories about The Pope saying Mass ad orientem at the Sistine Chapel. Most of the blogs I have seen are positive- well, gushing, really- over the change. Father Z and Zadoc have stories on the new silly season at the MSM that this has opened up. There will be more, if anyone picks the story up.
Some place huge importance on this. Some don't. Some are claiming to see the start of a new era here. I hope so. I want to see the Mass treated as the Summit of our life on earth, and treated with the respect and reverence it deserves. Personally I prefer the ad orientem posture. All face the same direction. The priest is both minimized and held high, as he presents our prayers before the altar of Our Lord. At the same time, versus populi is permitted. What is permitted by Rome cannot be condemned elsewhere. The Pope here is not condemning. He is leading through an example. In this many people see a new beginning, one that has been building since the election of Benedict.
I know a little history. New beginnings are made all the time. and most sink without a trace. Any gain made, any benefit earned, will have to be held and defended time and again. The media is ready to put their spin on any of the events or writings of the Pope. Most Catholics have no idea of what happened in Rome today, or any other day. Pretty much every Catholic I know personally never heard of Summorum Pontificum until I told them of it. We have a leader who leads through example, by doing. But his example only holds if somebody is watching.
If we're fortunate, we've moved away from beginnings, and are moving into something more. Perhaps some Churchill, speaking after El Alemein would be appropriate here: "Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning."