Friday, September 19, 2008

From Thursday Thoughts
  • The archi-liturgical culture war and the need for re-iconisation. Like the legitimate liturgical movement of old, Fr Aidan Nichols looks favourably towards Orthodox practice. Of course one need not be showy or precious with all this. I would miss the icons but the cold modern building in the first picture (a cerebral German look I imagine young Joseph Ratzinger going in for) would work just fine with the older forms of the rite; essentially what the liturgical movement had in mind! Thomas Day explains wonderfully that modern RC revision has always had its wires crossed: they destroy liturgical space and services but, to fill the freezer-like void they left, they do what they’ve (the Irish anyway) always done and junk it up with soppy unliturgical hymns (the guitar Mass is a pseudo-hip update of the Low Mass with hymns) and, now possible with the gutting of the rite, cute gimmicks, the worst of both the old and the new or the opposite of what the LM wanted. Note to Western Catholics who say they just love the Orthodox and are keen on reunion: the Orthodox vision of what Western Catholicism should again be is St Augustine’s, Denver, which looks a lot like what Pope Benedict wants and not your local parish or university chaplaincy living in the 1970s and 1980s. P.S. I’ve been to All Saints’, Margaret Street; Pusey House and Comper’s All Saints’ Convent. From the big blog of church porn ;) TNLM.
  • Good stuff from Fr Hunwicke in case you missed it the first time: 1662 Communion is an eccentric rite which has never been central to the life of the Church. The Prayer Book is a hieratic idiom of liturgical English which I regard as a precious treasure but I wonder whether we shouldn’t regard it as even more important to have, say, an English Missal Society or — what about this — a Priestly Fraternity of S Gregory (FSSG) for the practical experience of the Roman Rite in the Anglican context. And it would help us when RCs ask that dodgy question ‘What exactly is it that you want to bring with you into Full Communion?’
  • Cranmer’s clueless order. Not only was he a heretic. Granted the revisers of the Roman Rite after Trent didn’t know much about ancient liturgics either so their ‘return to primitive practice’ blessedly did little harm, a tidying-up of late-mediæval practice.

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