Wednesday, March 13, 2013
THE SPIRITUAL AND THE TEMPORAL, NOT EITHER/OR BUT BOTH/AND, THEREFORE BRING BACK THE TIARA AND BRING BACK THE CORONATION!
As I worked out at the Macon Health Club before the second billow of black smoke this morning, one of the priest-commentators on CNN stated that Pope Paul VI did away with the tiara with which he was crowned at his Coronation, he gave up in a dramatic post-Vatican II gesture when he placed it on the altar of Saint Peter's and stated it should be sold and the money given to the poor. The priest also stated that he gave up the sedia gestatoria in a similar symbolic statement.
He stated that John Paul I and II as well as Benedict XVI chose not to have a coronation with the tiara. On comment on history, though, is that Paul VI continued to use the Sedia Gestatoria as did Pope John Paul I. Pope John Paul II never used it, nor Benedict XVI.
The priest-commentator also said that when Paul VI offered his symbolic gesture he was telling the world that the mission of the pope and the Church is one of service in the spiritual realm, creating, let me see, what words, should I use, which Paul VI did not use, oh, yes, a kumbaya, hand-holding love-in kind of Church free of temporal authority of a king-pope or monarch-pope invested with secular, temporal power to enforce law.
But the reforms that CNN and other main line media want is administrative reform and that the next pope will be a good manager, a good administrator and will enact laws and hire people who can take care of the temporal needs of the Church and lay down the law on how bishops are to be disciplined in terms of how they manage their dioceses, especially in the area of sex abuse. Also how the Vatican handles its own financial dealings and corruption in the Vatican usually of a secular or temporal nature.
We have seen with the sex abuse scandal how subsidiarity did not work in protecting our young and how local bishops blew their own temporal authority in terms of the financial administration and management of their dioceses and their priests and religious.
In terms of sex abuse policy and local Church governance, the sex abuse scandal is but one sign of how miserably subsidiarity and decentralized government in the Church after Vatican II failed. But also in so many other administrative and managerial area, from liturgy to the life of priests and religious.
So, we need both the tiara and the miter when it comes to the papacy and the governance of the Church and a central authority that hold the diversity of the Church and her bishops to accountability. We are not congregationalists except on a universal level.
The Church is both a society in the temporal sense imbued with the spiritual and mystical aspects of being the Mystical Body of Christ on earth.
BRING BACK THE TIARA AND CORONATION, THE CHURCH NEEDS THIS SYMBOL OF TEMPORAL, MANAGERIAL, AND ADMINISTRATIVE AUTHORITY AND POWER CENTERED IN THE PAPACY. WE ARE A COMMUNITY THAT IS BOTH TEMPORAL AND SPIRITUAL, BODY AND SOUL!
Posted by Fr. Allan J. McDonald at Wednesday, March 13, 2013
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We need the tiara like you need another hole in your head.
Helmet-like tiaras are good to protect a hole in the head or holes in the head if there is more than one, much better than a bicycle helmet.
There seems to be a modern trend of institutions that stand for something (for lack of a better phrase) bending over backwards to convince people who hate them that they should like them. Unfortunately, it doesn't work.
This is especially true in the Catholic Church and with many bishops. Let's face it: The Church stands like a brick wall in its opposition to promiscuity, artificial birth control, homosexuality, abortion, relativism, Communism and all the other horrors our modern world presents us with. This was always pretty clear up into the late 1950's. After Vatican II, the message got blurred. One of the reasons Humanae Vitae was so loudly rebuked in 1968 was because it seemed out of character with what the Church seemed to be evolving into: that "kumbaya, hand-holding, love-in kind of Church" we all loathe and detest.
Why do we loathe and detest it? BECAUSE IT'S PHONY. Our enemies know what the Catholic Church stands for and no matter how much we try to sugar-coat the message, it just ain't gonna change.
That tiara and all that it stands for SHOULD be restored with all the other pomp and ceremony that has been stripped from the papacy because the world needs to know that the Catholic Church IS a Church of continuity and we have not abandoned our principles. The Catholic Church loves mankind yet stands firm, willing to endure mankind's rejection, which parallels its rejection of Christ. We're not going to make anyone love us any more by pretending to be something that we're not. People are not drawn to the "kumbaya, hand-holding, love-in" disaster that has decimated our Church. They are drawn to the uncompromising, unyielding rock that weathers every storm that the World, the Flesh and the Devil can throw at us.
Or, to quote a song by Randy Newman:
"They all hate us anyhow
so let's drop the big one now."
Albino Luciani's decision to refuse the coronation was not unexpected, although Paul VI envisaged that his successor would be crowned. I remember a cartoon in a French newspaper showing the new pontiff with a saucepan on his head with the caption "Je suis un pape simple". Pope Paul ceremonially relinquished the tiara in November 1963. The faithful of the Archdiocese of Milan, who had given Paul the tiara earlier that year, were none too pleased. Its design raised a few eyebrows, some likening it to a space capsule, and it was very heavy (10 lb as opposed to the 2 lb of the Palatine tiara with which Paul's two predecessors were crowned). To put this into perspective, the St Edward's crown with which the British monarch is crowned weighs 4 lb 12 oz and is only worn briefly; even so both Victoria and Edward VII deemed it too heavy and opted instead for the 2 lb Imperial State crown.
Paul systematically demolished most of the papal court ceremonial, disbanding the Noble and Palatine Guard and opting for modern minimalist vestments and stripped-down liturgy. He retained the sedia for practical reasons - people wanted to see him. I think Luciani was wrong, but he has set a precedent. I would like to see the new pontiff appear in the fanon, however, as it is a distinctive papal vestment. Let's hope Guido Marini can persuade him.
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