Saturday, January 29, 2005

From New Directions
This is a month late but worth saving:

‘Season’s greetings?’
Local authorities remove all reference to the cradle of our culture, renaming it, ‘A Time of Gifts’, the primary gift being my bally taxes to pay for this nonsense. Po-faced headmistresses ‘reduce offence to minorities’ by replacing the Nativity Play with glib morality tales in tinsel. This does not reduce the ‘offence’ to Muslims, who love Jesus and Mary and were not offended in the first place, only to the militant atheists in the staffroom.
Old ways, new hope
By Fr Michael Heidt, ‘priest trained at this house’, whom I had the honour of knowing then, now rector of St John’s, Norristown, Pennsylvania. Stand by, World War II generation and boomers: the restoration of what you tried to destroy is under way.

One of the happier things about moving parishes is the cheerful opportunity it gives to remove 1970s memorabilia. Out go the weary cassock albs with their thick, rope-like waist accessories that the Star Trek generation forced upon young servers. The ‘President’s Chair’ gets to go back to the teak recycling plant and the nylon impedimenta of the Decade of Good Taste can be quietly shelved and forgotten. All this to say nothing of veneered chipboard Tables, which only succeeded in confusing the faithful. Well, you know what they say ‘it’s out with old and in with the new’. The new in this instance being a return to natural fibre, cassocks and cottas, the Sacrament back on the High Altar and the Mass restored. Add a healthy dose of daily catholic devotions and everyone begins to get positively festive. Why not? They’ve got their religion back after several decades of tired modernist experimentation and what better gift to give a parish for the New Year than that?

...there is no good reason for us to side with a disbelieving culture. There is every good reason for us to have confidence in our own, because its true and it works. Fr David Diamond proved that not so long ago on the streets of Deptford, faithful priests and people proved it before, they do so now and they’ll do it again, even in America. So I say, bring back the High Altars and the Mass which converted me as a child and does so now. More to the point, bring back that militant love for the Church and the people, that holiness of life and surety of mission, which changed the face of Anglicanism and nearly converted its soul. For that matter, bring back triumphalism; after all, what do we have to apologise for but the apology itself? Having gotten over that we can begin to move again, here in America and regardless of primatial decision in February, towards the goal of rebuilding the Catholic Movement and converting our nation to the Faith.
Even if you don’t succeed, you can make your corner of the nation a better place and save souls.

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