Monday, July 22, 2019

Fr. Z reports and opines on the Diocese of Gallup going ad orientem

GREAT NEWS! Bp. Wall of @DioceseofGallup will celebrate Sundays ‘ad orientem’

I don’t know about you, but I needed some good news.
Here’s some good news.
His Excellency Most Rev. James S. Wall, Bishop of Gallup, on 22 July, Feast of St. Mary Magdalene, issued a letter to the people of the diocese entrusted to his care.  HERE
Citing that we have become too lax in our approach to the Eucharist, citing the and citing Benedict XVI’ teachings and his recent letter about The Present Crisis, Bp. Wall has determined that …
For all these reasons, I have decided that, since the recent solemnity of Corpus Christi, the 11:00am Sunday Mass will henceforth be celebrated ad orientem at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Gallup.
In the letter the bishop provides exemplary catechesis in which he cites the best sources, such as my friend Fr. Lang’s book Turning Towards the Lord: Orientation in Liturgical Prayer [US HERE – UK HERE] and also Ratzinger’s Spirit Of The Liturgy. [US HERE– UK HERE].
He also, and this was very good, deals with issue of “preference”.
Finally, let me say a few words on the matter of preference. There is an old saying that holds de gustibus non est disputandum: when it comes to taste, there is no room for dispute. To a point, that is true. Nobody can fault anybody for liking chocolate chip ice cream more than mint, or Chevrolet more than Ford. When it comes to the ways in which we worship God, however, nothing is simply a matter of taste. Msgr. Charles Pope explains this well: “Preferences should be rooted in solid liturgical principles. […] People matter, and they should be nourished and intelligently engaged in the Sacred Liturgy—but not in a way that forgets that the ultimate work of the Liturgy is not merely to please or enrich us but to be focused on and worship the Lord” […]
Exactly.  One can dispute taste.  Not all preferences are of equal value.  It might be that you have chosen something inferior.  Yes… let that sink in.  It’s better to set this category aside in these matters.
I also like the photo on the page that serves up the bishop’s letter.  In the background is the tabernacle (which needs a veil, the true sign of the Real Presence, but I digress) surmounted by words set in stone: SANCTUS SANCTUS SANCTUS.  Just right.
May I say that I am reminded of the late, great Extraordinary Ordinary of Madison.  Bp. Morlino made a strong argument and determined to celebrate ad orientem on Sundays.

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