Sunday, January 4, 2009

Why Can't We?

Yesterday I made my way into Dublin City Centre which is small enough to wander around but big enough to have lots of things to see - too many to see in a day or a week even. As the tourist board used to say "You haven't seen the half of it." Well I bought lots of books; two second hand the rest reduced by sales (or seeming sales - caveat emptor ). One book has already gotten me thinking: "The Heresy of Formlessness: the Roman Liturgy and its Enemy" by Martin Mosebach published by Ignatius Press (God bless them but I love that publisher). While I, like Fr. Fessio in the introduction, cannot agree entirely with Mr. Mosebach he has gotten me thinking already. This may end up as an article in our Capuchin periodicals but at least the bones will get an airing here first and you, dear reader, will be the first to hear my own simple thoughts. My thought is 'why can't we?' Why can't we do as the Holy Father is asking and restore reverence and mystery, faithfulness and beauty to the Liturgy? Why can't we reverse those decisions that have 'banalized' our Liturgy? As priests and as members of the Church who have responsibility to care for and promote the Liturgy we have a duty to make sure the people have access to the best that the Church has to offer not the best of our imaginations. Yes some will say this is a step back, or that it is too hard or too much. Those are excuses. Recovering the Liturgy of the Church is not the same as going back to the mindset of some before Vatican II. It is not going back to legalism (we will always have extremes). It is seeking the beauty of faithfulness. Our Capuchin forefathers were known for faithfulness and some paid for it with their lives. Right back to our Holy Father Francis there has been at the heart of our way of life a love for the Eucharist and for the Church and her Liturgy. We must not let 'pragmatism', that insidious ideology, deflect us from what the Holy Spirit is calling us to - recovering the pure source of our life - Christ in the Liturgy.

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