Let us lift up our voices high;
Are you thinking about the Transfiguration yet? You know, tomorrow’s feast. I think an excerpt from Samuel H. Miller’s The Life of the Church (p. 44ff) gets me pondering the person of Christ and who I want to be. And you?
The official preacher to the pope, but not an official of the Holy See, Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa, preached this homily to the Holy Father (and thus to the world) at the Good Friday Service. The preacher’s has received much criticism –VERY unfairly in my opinion if you read what he said– from the secular world, from Catholics who live on the margins of the Faith and others like the Jews for the points of comparisons made therein. It is not a perfect text and nor is it prudent in some places, but it needs to be engaged with faith and reason and not broken into pieces and read out of context. Read the text!!! The problem is that the sound bites we receive from the media become the only criteria of assessing whether something is good, worthy or acceptable for consumption whereas reason would want to hear the whole thing, even to re-read what was said before making foolish comments. Does the imperfect always mean bad? Father Cantalmessa is an evocative and provocative thinker and preacher. I think he deserves a fair hearing without the spin given in the media.
Father Raniero’s homily can be read here Good Friday homily 2010.pdf.
God the Father has exalted
Jesus Christ, the Lord of all,
Who has emptied self of glory,
Took our human nature’s thrall;
In obedience, He was humbled
Taking even cross and death;
Now creation shouts in wonder
“Christ is Lord” with ev’ry breath!
As the Cross is boldly
And the faithful now embrace
What was once a thing so shameful,
Now the hope of all our race,
Let us, marked with Cross, and
Shout this news throughout the earth:
Through the Cross, our God has conquered!
Through it, come to His new birth!
87.87. D, no tune
James Michael Thompson, (c) 2009, World Library Publications