Desiderio Desideravi 1: A Fundamental Dimension for the Life of the Church

1. My dearest brothers and sisters, with this letter I desire to reach you all – after having written already only to the bishops after the publication of the Motu Proprio Traditionis custodes – and I write to share with you some reflections on the liturgy, a dimension fundamental for the life of the Church. The theme is vast and always deserves an attentive consideration in every one of its aspects. Even so, with this letter I do not intend to treat the question in an exhaustive way. I simply desire to offer some prompts or cues for reflections that can aid in the contemplation of the beauty and truth of Christian celebration.

More than most Vatican documents, this one arrives in the context of a particular moment. The closure of the Traditional Latin Mass and the dashing of hopes that go with that. The slow recognition that the Church has focused a lot on internal struggles, perhaps too much. Why too much? We’ve stumbled in the realm of evangelization and mission, a faltering attempt to spread the Gospel in a world swamped in various isms and a post-Christian milieu.

From the very start, we read Pope Francis expects his readers–bishops and other clergy as well as lay people–to take this document as a starting point. Marching orders perhaps, but only in the sense the Holy Father sees the need for the Church to keep marching forward.

Last observation: we will be dealing with truth and beauty. But perhaps not in quite the same way as many in the Church.

Thoughts? Anybody peeking ahead?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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