Further comments on “Shake, rattle . . .” pointing up the great divide . . .

. . . in March of ’06. . .

The divide is in terms of religion as therapy vs. as sacrifice, people-centered vs. God-centered, that separates Catholics.

From Reader Margaret, reacting to Bob K’s enthusiastic endorsement of the kiss of peace as widely practiced:

We’ve slipped from the meaning of Mass as sacrifice, not as gathering for celebration. The idea of “our gathering of power from the spirit” sums up the problem.

The New Mass is about what God can do for us – bless us, empower us, help us, raise us up on eagle’s wings, etc. . .

But the traditional Mass is a sacrifice, the reenactment of Calvary where the emphasis is on God and giving Him thanks and adoration.

Can a New Mass that so obscures its own meaning be from God?

Reader Jennifer finds Margaret’s comment that we have “slipped from the meaning of Mass as sacrifice,” etc. “so very true” but finds Bob K’s use of “power,” as in “our gathering of power from the spirit,” misguided.

“Next to ‘love,'” she says, “‘power’ is the most seductive and misapplied word of our time.”

As for Margaret’s asking rhetorically, “Can a New Mass that so obscures its own meaning be from God?” Jennifer agrees, adding pregnantly, “God does not do transactional analysis.”

Bob K., responding, does not think we have slipped in our grasp of the mass. Based on what he learned in high school in 1955, he considers the mass a distillation of centuries’ practice.

“There have been changes in many aspects of our faith over the centuries,” Bob says, citing “the elaborate garments that our cardinals wear today” as clothing “certainly Jesus never wore.”

In the mass “we commemorate and relive the sacrifice Jesus endured. . . . At different parts of the mass, we share different aspects of our mystery and our community together.”

At the start “we say hello to God.” Then “we read and listen and contemplate our readings.

“We transubstantiate [“we”?]; we share the body and blood, we greet and acknowledge one another, we . . . [receive] and share a blessing.

“At various points we put our words into song — joyous, sad, reflective depending on the season, the occasion, etc.

“At the end, we move with our beliefs out into the world to . . . try to be a force for good in the market place.

“The Mass has many aspects, including beauty and seriousness . . . enlargement of our spirit and acknowledgement of the goodness of the others who are with us in Christ.”

Bob captured the spirit of our dominant form of worship.

more more more . . .

1 Comment

  1. Jim Bowman says:

    Reblogged this on Blithe Spirit and commented:

    More reactions to “Shake . . . “


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