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Monday, 2 November 2009

What did you go out to see?

What do you expect?
What are you seeking?
What do you hope to "get out of Mass"?

Bishop Vasa has a solid column on assimilating the coming changes to the Mass by finally assimilating the Mass, the essence of the Mass.
If there is one factor for the laity which will impact on the ease with which changes are accepted or the strength with which they are resisted it is our fundamental understanding of the nature and purpose of the Sacred Liturgy.
The frequency with which comments are heard such as, “I really like Father X’s Mass,” or “I find it very difficult to go to Father Y’s Mass,” or “That Mass did not do anything for me,” or the most common, “I don’t get anything out of the Mass” are all indicators of a certain understanding of the nature and purpose of the Sacred Liturgy.
Underlying these comments, and many more variations thereof, is a certain concept of the liturgy.
The proposed changes present us an opportunity to reflect, even in a significantly self critical way, on our understanding, or misunderstanding, of the meaning and purpose of the Sacred Liturgy.

...“Sunday is the pre-eminent day for the liturgical assembly, when the faithful gather ‘to listen to the word of God and take part in the Eucharist, thus calling to mind the Passion, Resurrection, and glory of the Lord Jesus, and giving thanks to God who ‘has begotten them again, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead’ unto a living hope.’” (CCC, 1167) ...

the reason we gather is to “listen to the Word of God.” There is thus an importance placed on what God gives to us, His Word. We gather to hear it. We also gather to “take part in the Eucharist.” This involves much more than simply being present and receiving Holy Communion. Centrally, it involves “calling to mind the Passion, Resurrection and glory of the Lord Jesus” and giving thanks to God for the salvation which Jesus has won for us.

... it is not only the reader or the servers or the extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion who participate in the Mass but rather everyone is able to fulfill the mandate of the council about “full, active and conscious participation.” This is so because an essential part of the “activity” is listening, offering, remembering, rejoicing, thanking. These are all interior actions. Without a doubt the participation also includes responding, singing, standing, kneeling, et cetera but these are to be external manifestations of the fact that we are participating interiorly because simply doing these things is not necessarily the same thing as actively participating. [emphasis added]

“The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.’ The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch. The Eucharist is the efficacious sign and sublime cause of that communion in the divine life and that unity of the People of God by which the Church is kept in being.

The people will accept and benefit from the linguistic enrichments of the Liturgy.

If the Bishop Ts and Father Rs and musician Cs and catechist Ps of the world choose to work against that acceptance and those benefits, their dissent will have more impact on themselves than on the People of God as a whole.

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