Wednesday, January 30, 2008

From Fr Hunwicke
On praying for the conversion of the Jews:
We are told that the Holy Father is going to revise the Good Friday prayer for the Jews in the 1962 Missal. Since a pope wrote that prayer, it can hardly (whatever the SSPX may say) be beyond the competence of a pope to rewrite it. And because of ecumenical tactfulness the term ‘blindness’ (obcæcatione) has long been regarded with suspicion. But there do seem to me to be big questions here. It is definitely the teaching of the NT that Jews who do not accept Christ are blinded (Romans 11:25; Ephesians 4:18 (cæcitatem); and see 2 Corinthians 3:7-18). Do critics of traditional liturgy dislike it because, as they sometimes seem to say, it is insufficiently biblical, or because it is too biblical? I think we should be told.
‘East good, West bad’ say liberals:
...the East does get away with a lot compared with poor old Western Catholicism. It is commonplace to condemn something Western as ‘medieval’ or ‘baroque’ while the same thing in Eastern dress is regarded as part of a wonderful mystical tradition which is pretty well beyond criticism. The ARCIC Report on Mary, soon to be discussed by the English General Synod, is a case in point. It says many excellent thigs about our Lady, but there is an in-built anti-Western prejudice. If fifth-century Greeks write rather extravagant poetry about Mary, this is termed ‘flourishing’ (p36). But when fifteenth-century Latins do the same, it is called ‘florid’ (p41). The prejudice shown here is all the more entertaining because both of those words come from the same Latin root; but the first has acquired meliorative vibes, the second pejorative.
As I was saying.
If your religion is based entirely on emotion, if you believe yourself to be ‘spiritual’ simply because you feel all warm and toasty and inclusive inside, then one religion is pretty much the same as another.
MCJ

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