Universalis, your very own breviary in pixels...

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

"The Lord of History"

Marvelous phrase, used by a British priest in giving his blessing to close out an episode of an EWTN program called "The Journey Home."

(When we first received this channel on our cable, the "TV guide", rather amusingly, I think, described this as a program about people returning to the land of their ancestors. But I digress.)

The Lord of History's Church must be the Church of History.

I am fascinated by how often converts, (in the commonly accepted meaning, I understand that most of the people to whom I refer were already Christian, and did not "convert", but rather "were received into the Church," or into full communion with the Church,") are historians in one way or another.
A deeper awareness of where one has come from is always going to provide a surer guide of where one ought to go from here.
It seems to me that anyone who delves into the origins of Christianity, and believes, cannot rationally belong to any denomination.

There is either the Church, or there is, not even congregationalism, but individualism.

There is either Catholicism, or there is making it up as you go along, and acknowledging it. (The latter is defensible.)
I can understand the sense of betrayal that often leaks through in combox comments from "converts" (in the sense described above.)

Imagine being struck by Splendor of Truth revealed in the Catholic Church, the Universality Her message, the historicity of Her claims -- and then learning that your local Office of Worship, for the Diocese of West Singanewchurchintobeing, not only promotes manufactured prayer and sacred music and holy days, but actively discourages or suppresses any facet of Ritual that might connect you with anyone in the Communion of Saints who was naive enough to have existed before the flowering of the Faith that occurred in the latter part of the 20th century; or hearing Father Scooter Wedontgointforthatmedievalstufftheolgyhasevolvedpastit preach; or finding out your local parish is Saint Thewaywedoithere's.

There is, as a read somewhere, a reason "parochial" means what it has come to.
Can "diocesan" as a pejorative be far behind? or "conferential"?

"We don't care how they do it in Rome" is all well and good until you realize that people who say that often really mean "we don't care how anyone does it who isn't right here right now," or "we don't care how the Church Universal does it."

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