Monday, September 10th, 2012
10 September 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under Liturgy
, Rite of Marriage  Comments
I like Scott Alessi’s piece on marrying at Sunday Mass. It’s a decision my wife and I have never come close to regretting. Here we are processing in together during the entrance song:
Isn’t that a great dress? My sweetie made it. Who’s the stiff in the suit? Not too nervous there, are we, bucko. The scan of the Mass just after we were called up for vows:
It can work. And once I get my sweetie’s permission to crack into the wedding picture album maybe I can scan more stuff.
10 September 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under bishops 1 Comment
The episcopal mansion used by the archbishops of Philadelphia has been sold to St Joseph’s University. That’s some domestic square footage–more than twenty-four times the footprint of my home. Just think: two dozen teenagers could be trying on their white homecoming dresses in its rooms this week–not even counting the 8.9 acres for lawn parties. The NCR piece includes an air image of the property. Just to the upper right of the house, you can see the emptied concrete basins that were once swimming pools.
It’s a good move. I wish it had saved jobs. Jobs are in short enough supply for Americans. Archbishop Chaput is moving in with the seminarians. It was a good era for the US bishops when some of their number lived in rectories, a care facility, or a humble apartment. Such are helpful gestures and show moral leadership.
10 September 2012
EN 18 offers a definition of evangelization:
18. For the Church, evangelizing means bringing the Good News into all the strata of humanity, and through its influence transforming humanity from within and making it new: “Now I am making the whole of creation new.”[Rev. 21:5; cf. 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15] But there is no new humanity if there are not first of all new persons renewed by Baptism[Cf. Rom 6:4] and by lives lived according to the Gospel.[Cf. Eph 4:24-25; Col 3:9-10.] The purpose of evangelization is therefore precisely this interior change, and if it had to be expressed in one sentence the best way of stating it would be to say that the Church evangelizes when she seeks to convert,[Cf. Rom 1:16; 1 Cor 1:18, 2:4] solely through the divine power of the message she proclaims, both the personal and collective consciences of people, the activities in which they engage, and the lives and concrete milieu which are theirs.
How important are perspectives? The image of converting humanity from the inside out isn’t one usually attached to much modern chat about spreading the faith, even the notion of the “new” evangelization. But it certainly colors one’s expectations, doesn’t it? Most Catholics today seem to have retreated from an engagement with the culture, as if it taints us by our very association with it. Evangelization might be less successful than it could be if we insist, or presume the insistence on being disengaged from the “concrete milieu” of the times.
The definition seems pretty audacious to me. Our goal is Baptism. Not semi-Christian sympathizers. Our aim is a life transformed according to the pattern of the Gospel. We also rely on the “divine power of the (Gospel) message.” Not our own persuasive abilities.
Finally, notice the targets of our commentary: personal and collective consciences, activities, and the life and setting of those attracted to Christ. The post-conciliar Church fields a lot of criticism for a perception its message is mere milquetoast. But I don’t see that in EN 18. Do you?
10 September 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under Liturgy  Comments
For the first time in twelve years, I’ll be working with a lector who is blind. My previous experience was a positive one, as the young lady prepared readings in advance and arrived at liturgy with a stiff piece of paper, rather parchment-like, punched with those small dots.
This semester, our parish has a grad student who reads via Braille. I sent her the readings for her assigned Sundays. She has told me she can “translate” these readings for her use.
A few discussion points for my commentariat, if you care to weigh in …
How many of you have had lectors who needed to proclaim the Scriptures from a Braille text? What are some of the ways in which you have interacted with these lectors to assist in their preparation?
On the institutional front, what do you suppose the approach is with Braille and the Lectionary? Does a Braille copy of a Lectionary reading have to have a copyright notice? Does it need to be aligned in sense lines like the Lectionary? What might other potential issues do you see as possibly coming from Rome or the USCCB on this front?
10 September 2012
BLS 56-60 examines the altar. We start today with a recounting of church teaching on what an altar is:
§ 56 § At the Eucharist, the liturgical assembly celebrates the ritual sacrificial meal that recalls and makes present Christ’s life, death, and resurrection, proclaiming “the death of the Lord until he comes.”(1 Cor 11:26; cf. Rev 19:9) The altar is “the center of thanksgiving that the Eucharist accomplishes”(GIRM 296) and the point around which the other rites are in some manner arrayed.(Mediator Dei 21) Since the Church teaches that “the altar is Christ,”(RDCA IV, 4) its composition should reflect the nobility, beauty, strength, and simplicity of the One it represents. In new churches there is to be only one altar so that it “signifies to the assembly of the faithful one Christ and the one Eucharist of the Church.”(GIRM 303)
The New Testament is cited: Paul’s recounting of the Last Supper narrative as well as the Wedding Canticle of the Lamb.
The full citation from GIRM 296: “At the altar the sacrifice of the cross is made present under sacramental signs. It is also the table of the Lord, and the people of God are called together to share in it. The altar is, as well, the center of the thanksgiving that the Eucharist accomplishes.” This is more than a passing nod to the meal versus sacrifice camps. It is about the entire Paschal Mystery, which the US bishops sum up well enough in the words, “Christ’s life, death, and resurrection.”
The Mediator Dei citation is interesting, but less convincing to me. Not that I would deny the centrality of the Eucharist, but only note that the sacraments don’t always take place physically around an altar. Sometimes they are lawful, even needful outside the four walls. Baptism and Eucharist form an axis in the church. The Eucharist, as is clear in the adult rites, is the culmination of Baptism. That orientation is clearer in the reformed rites than in Pope Pius XII’s worthy encyclical.
“The altar is Christ”–we read of this in our recent examination of the Rite of Dedication of a Church and Altar.
One altar for new churches–that’s pretty authoritative.
All texts from Built of Living Stones are copyright © 2000, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.