And actually, those are forbidden expressly by EF rubrics! These things must be REALLY old, like before 1570. Either that or somebody didn't get the message.From the Caeremoniale Episcoporum:"Omnia paramenta, tam altaris, quam celebrantis, et ministrorum, librorum, et faldistorii sint nigra, et in his nullae imagines mortuorum, vel cruces albae ponantur."You will also note that chasubles with white crosses are forbidden as well.
Talk about memento mori...sheesh!
Ignoring the subject matter, this chasuble is an extaordinary work of art! Consider the number of hours it must have taken to create this one vestment. Imagine how this garment would look if the images of Death were replaced with Christ the Just Judge, or the Divine Mercy, and the skulls were replaced with Cherubs!Thank you for sharing this, Father! It inspires me to take up embroidery again.
I think this vestment dates to the 17th or 18th century and would be eye-opening to say the least. Children must have loved it!
I think he is sitting and texting on his iphone on the second side!
People can't take stuff like that anymore. The idea that right belief, worship, prayer, the Mass are life and death issues, that our eternal salvation and inevitable death are the most important considerations in our lives is foreign to our secular, post-Enlightenment culture. The notion that we need solemn reminders of this makes people uncomfortable. It reminds me of a sign on the marquee of a country Protestant church I saw during the very hot summer of a couple of years ago: "Think Its Hot Now. Wait 'Til You Get to Hell." Prots have their memento mori, too, just not as elegant...or disturbing...
Re Gene's comment, funerary art is the same way. Take a look at really onld American cemeteries and on tombstones you'll see depictions or skulls, skeletons, the Grim Reaper, hour glasses, and other works reminiscent of a memento mori. An appreciation for the role of death in life has disappeared with the coming of the antiseptic modern age. Aesthetically, if you want to re-embrace the darkness in order to better appreciate the light . . . well, that's what the Gothic is all about, and nobody does Gothic better than Catholics--if they have a mind to. Gene. you may be closer to goth than you care to admit. We really must talk about this some time. :-)
Well, Anon 5, I have read all of Dickens twice...LOL! Oh, and Ann Rice, too, until she went off her meds and just floated off to la la land...
Anon 5 and Gene, I would love to be the fly on the wall and listen in on that discussion!
I think they're beautiful and appropriate for a Funeral Mass.
Dickens: nah, not really Gothic. Rice? Bah! Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Poe, Stoker . . . then we'll move you on to modern interpretations such as Bauhaus, Siouxie and the Banshees, and the like. Even the movie Alien is more than a little Gothic. There's hope for you!
Well, Dickens has Gothic elements. I have read the others as well, but Stoker and Bronte seem the most "Gothic." Poe is just weird...but great.
CarolH.: be my guest. :-) Heck, even my avatar is Gothic: the strong contrast between light and darkness, the fact that it was taken in a Gothic church (which happens to be Catholic . . . I think you recognize it) . . . Gothic is everywhere. :-)
I think they are beautiful and in keeping with the reality of the triumph of physical death of the body. Without that physical death, there is no Heaven or complete union with God. No completion of the spiritual journey. Let us embrace our own eventual death, make it a Holy event by being in a state of Grace through frequent attendance upon the Sacraments of our beloved Church.
Sure those aren't the "vestments" of some group of Masons?
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