Wednesday, January 14, 2015
ARE TRADITIONALISTS TOO HORIZONTAL ORIENTED WHEN IT COMES TO THE HOLY MASS
While I do not disagree that the external way in which the Mass is celebrated is important to convey the vertical elements of the Mass, the horizontal continues to dominate the discussion. This seems to me to betray the essence of what our participation in Mass is all about, offering worship (sacrifice) to almighty God through Jesus Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Someone commented that if my ideas for the "what if" the Mass had been revised in a more sober way with some specifics added, that in doing so this would destroy the Extraordinary Form. The Ordinary Form of the Mass we have today is a revision of the Extraordinary Form, but a revision that many, including myself, believe went too far. So what I offered was almost no change, except for the Liturgy of the Word, with lay readers, as we have it today in the EF's revision and the vernacular for the changing parts of the Mass.
The issue of girls and women serving the altar is a red herring or a straw man. One can easily promote vocations to the priesthood with male altar servers, altar boys even when altar girls are present and I offered a suggestion.
One could also dress the girls slightly different in their serving roles and exclude them for direct ministry to the priest, such as holding the Roman Missal for the celebrant and offering the incense, water and wine and washing of the hands. These could still be for males only. Any parish could arrange that. In fact when girls were acknowledged as already serving in many parishes in our diocese, Bishop Lessard (prior to the allowance of altar girls officially) had such a policy.
But really folks, why aren't we focusing in on the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Mass and how Christ feeds us with His Holy Word spoken and made sacramentally His Holy Flesh and Blood in the Holy Eucharist?
Why can't we instill more awe and respect for the Holy Eucharist by reclaiming our past "scupulousity" about care of the Holy Eucharist, especially its "Crumbs" and tabernacle veils on the outside and inside of the tabernacle placed directly in the center of the sanctuary with veils over the ciborium.
Our youth minister told me that recently he was in his home parish prior to Mass and a CCD class of second graders came in for a lesson prior to Mass. It was noisey and distracting. The catechist, opened the tabernacle and casually pulled out the ciborium and took the lid off and showed the kids the content. The kids were giggling, not asked to show any reverence such as falling down on their knees in silence and then when the ciborium was placed back in the tabernacle, the door was left open so that the kids could come up one by one and peer inside the tabernacle.
Does this sort of catechesis help these kids when they become adults to actually believe in the real presence and have a sense of God as greater than they, the Supreme Being and the call to awe and wonder in His sacramental presence?