Sacred Liturgy & Sacraments: July 2010 Archives
Hat tip to Fr Guy Selvester at Shouts in the Piazza for posting this image. Indeed, the sacred Liturgy is worship of the Blessed Trinity not a time for introducing secular measures of approval and disapproval. I was at a priest friend's funeral today and after the homily was finished a member of the laity started the congregation in an applause. Not only was it out of place it bore no relation to the reality of the meaning of the Sacrifice of the Mass being celebrated by the Archbishop of Hartford (himself seemingly surprised yet he drew more attention to the fact that it happened). Not that my friend Father Brian didn't deserved some thoughtful acknowledgement for his extraordinary human and priestly qualities but at his Mass of Christian Burial applause was out of place. Paying attention to human sentiment and emotion is very important but there are appropriate times for external awareness. Something similar happened after a music piece was perforned earlier this week at a Mass which I attended for a friend's nephew who took his life. No doubt we were all feeling the rawness of emotion of a young man's suicide but is the Liturgy the place for secular displays of feeling. My friend Father Ambrose has fought for keeping applause out of the school Mass at St Louis Abbey's conventual Mass celebrated with the student body in attendance...
Some may have heard the idea "the new liturgical movement" used nowadays to describe a recovery of the sacred Liturgy that understands a continuity in the Liturgy that has existed through the ages and not just made up by scholars and hacks. John Allen explores the origin of this idea according to the thinking of Pope Benedict in a brief NCR article, "What Benedict means by a 'new liturgical movement.'
I would also recommend the book referenced by John Allen, Milestones. It is necessary reading for all sorts of things, not just trying to understand Joseph Ratzinger.