Chapter II, Requirements and Preliminary Conditions for Liturgical Inculturation” covers the next twelve numbered sections of VL. First, we address, “Requirements Emerging From The Nature of the Liturgy.”
This is Liturgy 101, if you will, a very basic reminder of the very definition of Christian worship:
21. Before any research on inculturation begins, it is necessary to keep in mind the nature of the liturgy. It “is, in fact the privileged place where Christians meet God and the one whom he has sent, Jesus Christ” (cf. Jn. 17:3).(Vicesimus Quintus Annus, 7) It is at once the action of Christ the priest and the action of the church which is his body, because in order to accomplish his work of glorifying God and sanctifying mankind, achieved through visible signs, he always associates with himself the church, which, through him and in the Holy Spirit, gives the Father the worship which is pleasing to him. (SC 5-7)
As we review this section, VL 21-27, we will get a snapshot of how the Catholic Church sees liturgy in the mid-1990’s. Not that there will be anything substantive omitted or added, but these sections will give the student of VL and of the Catholic liturgy a summation of the foundation of liturgical theology.