Thursday, December 28, 2023


 Will the next pope recover the splendor of the papal liturgy at St. Peter’s or keep it bland and ho hum? Time will tell!


ByzRus said...

I'm the wrong person of which to ask this question.

I'm for re-enchantment. Benedict XVI was on the right track. He taught in an accessible way, made the faith look vibrant and inviting and the numbers that turned out to see him should adequately evidence this.

In 2023/24 terms, I don't know how the re-enchantment cohort can compete with the plain "sell it all and give it to the poor / we don't need/do that anymore / that's unnecessary / the same end is being reached" cohort. It's too engrained, too accepted and while only time will heal this vision of what liturgy is and should be from my Eastern vantagepoint, that generational change won't occur for some time yet. Additionally, those who desire tradition and visual tradition have been too marginalized to compete with those who desire "innovation" as noted in FC's preamble. The Church has become too fractured, too many options and variations and I don't see how this could possibly change for the next 500+ years. "They" wanted a mess and they certainly have made a glorious one marginalizing believers and sacrificing souls along the way. One could argue that there's a lot of people who are currently answering for their actions at the judgement seat and an equal number who will have to answer for their actions. If we truly believe what the deposit of faith provides, it's difficult to think otherwise is possible. God in three persons isn't generally noted as embracing "innovation" in that deposit. But, let some go to work providing quotes no one will read trying to prove me wrong. Let others who've wholly embraced innovation to date do the same. We can all spin our wheels taking this one to both death and in circles.

ByzRus said...

Anabaptist puritanicalism applied to Roman liturgy does little to inspire, create awe or wonder, lead all souls to heaven etc. It simply gets the "job" done in the most sterile, functional way possible. Does it breed hope? Perhaps in some, less so in the majority who have voted and continue to vote with their feet. Do the pope's quaint talks and stern "warnings" inspire hope, awe and wonder? Perhaps in some, but as evidences by the emptiness of St. Peter's square, many have voted with their feet. It's been a long, slow death of Roman Catholicism. Western Europe is mostly secular, in the U.S. it's only growing/surviving in the South, Africans seem perplexed by what comes from headquarters and others are perhaps too far away to notice and/or care. Again, my ancient faith lens sees those painfully blinded by a cult of papal personality, others brainwashed to an nth with their fixation on fasting from candles, incense, holy water and book stands at varying times during the year thinking that is somehow "meaningful" to other than those who lived through that era yet is painfully bewildering to those who have wholesale rejected it. If the Novus Ordo is so great and well loved, why are churches in the Northeast hemorrhaging believers, closing, merging, being repurposed as restaurants and dance halls, why are "innovations" that make most normal people cringe still regularly chronicled within the blogosphere, why are so many "cultural" catholics only appearing twice per year, or under duress at Aunt Sophy's funeral and then, clueless as to what to do when there and on and on and on?

Specifics regarding Pew surveys only serve to support the obvious and are demanded by those who choose to blindly ignore what's going on around them. Yet, "we" are rigid and the TLM remains the biggest challenge/problem facing the Roman Church. Good grief....

ByzRus said...

One last point then I'll descend my soap box.

Again, via an Eastern lens, I've been perplexed at some of the comments here in the last month. How in the hell did I end up in this communion as opposed to my Orthodox ancestral Church I've asked myself more than once.

The excessively intolerant masquerading as the epitome of toleration, the "book stand" criticisms, fetish critiques, unbleached candle eye-rolls, unsophisticated believers being criticized for trying to wrap their heads around Vatican generated ambiguity and FS-style "innovation", the blind fundamentalist worship of man putting him in a place never intended then accusing those who don't fall into line of being satanic. Always this underlying anger and dislike that I have yet in my +50 years on this earth been able to justify.

If empty churches and squares don't clue some in that "St. Peter, we have a problem", I don't know what will. I suppose we could justify these reactions by simply concluding that even a broken watch is correct twice per day.

TJM said...


Your comments are always spot on. I have come to the painful conclusion that the current Papacy, much of the hierarchy and their sycophants are either wittingly or unwittingly working for the other team, certainly not for the Church of Christ. They are also contumacious and devoid of any real belief and certainly charity.

ByzRus said...

This falls into the "I've gotta be me" category, Enjoy:

I have no idea what this is about, but it's funny: