Thursday, 8 July 2010

Three years on

Yesterday was the third anniversary of the papal Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum which recognised that the Tridentine Liturgy had never been abrogated.

Over at St Mary Magdalen, Brighton, the same day Fr Ray received an email from some diocesan coordinator for the papal visit with the following information:

The Park [Hyde Park] will open from 2pm and liturgical entertainment will be running through the afternoon - dance acts, videos etc (it promises to be an enjoyable event). The Pope will arrive to conclude the prayer vigil and benediction and the whole event will be finished by 9.00pm. I am told that the Pope will be there for the latter half of the event.

I'm struggling to contain my feelings about what on earth 'liturgical entertainment' might involve. I'm afraid I feel very strongly these days that until the powers-that-be want to change the landscape, we might as well all sit in the corner making bleebling noises to ourselves. Really, I'm sure if I made an effort I might imagine that 'liturgical entertainment' is loose language aimed at labelling something designed to engage the youth of today in something religious. It's what comes under the label of entertainment that alarms me. I hope to God it isn't something like the recent Western Mass in the diocese of Cardinal Schoenborn.

Le diable de mon coeur s'appelle à quoi bon? wrote Georges Bernanos. The demon of my heart is called 'what's the use?' If it wasn't for prayer, so would mine. Only I hate to admit to praying in case the people who organise liturgical entertainments try to co-opt it.

Every age has its vices; our appears to be a propensity to daub our ugly image on anything vaguely transcendent as a way of participating in it.

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