Thursday, August 13, 2009

Of Archbishops And Liturgy

Father Zuhlsdorf brightens my day a bit by showing me there's at least one Archbishop out there who notices the vocation crisis isn't primarily a priestly one:

“That’s where we have the real vocation crisis,” he remarked, noting that “only 50% of our Catholic young people are getting married.”

“We have a vocation crisis to life-long, life-giving, loving, faithful marriage. If we take care of that one, we’ll have all the priests and nuns we need for the church,” Dolan said.

But Father Zuhlsdorf's extensive post wasn't just comforting for that reason. Much later on he mentions another thing that has become close to my heart:

If you sense that something quite serious and important is going on right now, for the love of God rethink your approach to how you foster Holy Church’s proper public worship.

Do all in your power and through your influence to foster a worship of God which conforms not to worldly goals – as praiseworthy as they may be in a world still dominated by its dire prince – but rather to the real point of religion: an encounter with mystery.

Our worship must become more and more focused on the one who is Other. Seek what is truly above in your rites and raise people to encounter mystery.

I went to the local Antiochian Orthodox church this Sunday, as well as Mass where I normally go. There really is no comparison. I know we have it, or are at least supposed to have it, but my fellow Catholics, it is so awfully obvious that something has gone terribly wrong. Father Zuhlsdorf's exhortation is right on the mark. Emotionally, it has been a terrible thing for me, because I generally just want to go there, where the liturgy obviously is, rather than staying and fighting.

Unfortunately, or fortunately, as the case may be, I tend to think the harder path is the path the Lord wants me to take.

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