With today’s post, we finish up Chapter Two, which examined liturgy and popular piety as taught by the modern Magisterium. We’ll let the document summarize what has been written in the previous fifteen numbered sections:
75. The Apostolic See has not failed to indicate those theological, pastoral, historical, and literary principles by which a renewal of pious exercises is to be effected (Cf. Congregation for Bishops, Directorium de pastorali ministerio Episcoporum, cit., 91; Marialis cultus, 24-38). It has also signaled the manner in which they should reflect a biblical and liturgical spirit, as well as an ecumenical one. The criteria established by the Holy See emphasize how the essential nucleus of the various pious exercises is to be identified by means of an historical investigation, and also reflect something of contemporary spirituality. Pious exercises are also required to take due account of the implications of a healthy anthropology. They should respect the culture and expressive style of the peoples who use them without, however, losing those traditional elements that are rooted in popular customs.
The Magisterium asks questions of popular piety regarding its interface with and utilization of not just liturgy, but also Scripture, ecumenism, today’s spirituality, anthropology, and culture. The key is how the local pastor and perhaps the bishop choose to interpret piety along the lines of these principles.
The full document, the Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy, is online at the Vatican site.