First of all,why does Ministeria Quaedam say:
"Among the particular offices to be preserved and adapted to contemporary needs are those that are in a special way more closely connected with the ministries of the word and of the altar and that in the Latin Church are called the offices of reader and acolyte and the subdiaconate"
So Ministeria Quaedam says that the office of the subdiaconate is to be preserved, and then goes on to conflict the role with that of the office of acolyte? What does this mean? It's terribly confusing. I think that the official translation of article 4 of Ministeria Quaedam is inaccurate. The translation says:
"consequently, the major order of subdiaconate no longer exists in the Latin Church."
Now,I think this is inaccurate for two reasons.Firstly, as a major order,the subdiaconate was not on the same level as the minor orders.The Roman Catechism says of it that it contains a sacred character that the other orders do not have.
"From the minor orders, which are not sacred, and of which we have been speaking until now, one lawfully enters and ascends to major and Sacred Orders."
The council fathers knew* that a sacramental major order could not be suppressed in the usual sense, without destroying the integrity of the sacrament of holy orders.A major order cannot be simply abolished. Secondly,the Latin does not really say the order is abolished or simply no longer exists. Rather, the Latin denotes that the subdiaconate will not remain in the form that it was at the time.The subdiaconate will not stay as it is now in the Latin church.It will not stay (or remain) fully in the sense that it is now.
That's a bit different from saying that the order is suppressed, no longer exists,is abolished,etc. Admittedly, MQ does say that the role of the subdeacon is now to be taken by the acolyte, and that the conference of bishops may call the acolyte the subdeacon. This is the hole in my argument.Unfortunately, this is something that neither I nor almost any person can resolve, because nothing in the Vatican II or Post-Vatican II documents deal with the ontology of the subdiaconate, or whether a major order could be suppressed.Only the documents of Trent and pre-Vatican II documents deal with this, and their answer is an emphatic No.As with liturgy and other things, there are vague ambiguities and holes with some of what we have received from the council.In absence of an answer from the conciium, I always appeal to that which came before it.
*Though they seem to have glossed over it.