Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cardinal Arinze warns against liturgical innovations in Asia

excerpt from Union of Catholic Asian News.

Cardinal Arinze in his homily at the closing Mass stressed “the art of proper celebration” of Mass and proper focus on the Word of God in liturgical celebrations.

He cited Church tradition of taking readings only from Scripture, on which the homily should principally be based. The homily is not a time for “theological acrobatics, political discussion, and sociological analysis” or to ask for donations, he said.

Acknowledging the value of Asian cultures in enhancing liturgical celebrations, he cautioned against “downright mistaken innovations and idiosyncrasies of some enthusiastic clerics.” [He knows what's going on in the Asia and the Philippines,  eh?  I think he has some Pinoy clerics in mind.]

Use of dance, he said, needs critical examination [Huh?!  I thought he once said that Mass is not allowed even once by the CDW that he once headed.  And that not once in the history of the Church did dance become part of the Liturgy.  See here.] because most performances draw attention to the performers, and offer enjoyment and invite applause. “People come to Mass not for recreation, but to adore God,” the cardinal said.

He also highlighted the importance of ongoing liturgical formation “since many liturgical abuses are based on ignorance rather than bad will.” [I agree to that.  Some priests are even oblivious of our Eastern Catholic brethren's liturgical heritage.  And they call themselves liturgical experts!  Believe me.  I know some priests.  But there are other reasons other than ignorance.  Some liturgical hobbyists insists that "Vatican II allowed liturgical creativity."  so they say.  And so they write books, pamphlets and "guides" in how to...(wait for it!) plan...the Mass.  Yes you read it right.  Plan the Mass.  An instruction not for the altar boy, but on how to make the Mass, "more interesting, and less boring."  Well, I was trained to do that before.  And boy was I disgusted.]

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