Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Liturgical pauperism or minimalism has long been (40+ years!) an issue with me. I never understood the rather misguided notion that Almighty GOD deserved anything short of the very best in our worship and in the adornment of His priests and temples. The spiritual lives of Catholics has suffered a very noticeable impoverishment in the past decades through this liturgical minimalism. No longer in most parish churches is it obvious upon entering that one has left the profane world outside and entered onto sacred ground. The sanctuary or "holy of holies" is no longer a place of awe set aside for a most sacred purpose.... The bitter fruit of this minimalism is noticeable in the dress, decorum, piety & reverence (or more often lack thereof) among the faithful assisting at Holy Mass. One would have the impression that many (if not most) do not actually know what transpires upon the altar. One would have the impression that they no longer believe in the real presence of JESUS in the most Blessed Sacrament of the altar! Lamentably, it is more often so that the Church has become a place that differs little from one's living room where guests are entertained. Therefore, I was edified to read this quote this morning:
"Annalena Benini has already masterfully highlighted this in her “Benedictine Nostalgia” in Il Foglio [March 23]: “Benedict XVI was adorned in symbols and traditions showing everyone that he no longer belonged to himself, nor even to the world.” He was of Christ, he was “alter Christus” who is the Priest in the liturgy. With the vestments he is no longer a private man, but “prepares” (adorns) the place for someone else; and that someone else is the King of the Universe. Impoverishing the majesty of vestments signifies impoverishing Christ. And it is actually Christ Himself that separated personal poverty from that of the Church’s institution."
THE LITURGY CANNOT BE POOR