"Let Chaos Storm!"
When will it stop, this change after change after change in our liturgy? Will it never end? In a word, No.
When the Spirit came, a new time began. It was the time of the dispensation of the Mystery, of its communication. It was the time of what the Fathers called the Sacramental Economy. So long as time lasts, this dispensing, this communicating, this deepening, this changing will go on.
The Fathers saw the liturgy as Christís own Paschal Mystery made present through words and through signs. It was a unique event. It happened once for all. It occurred in time, but it draws all time up into itself, as the massive circling winds draw the things of the earth up into themselves.
Time is not time unless it flows on. Slowly, gradually, haltingly, stop and start, by guess and by gosh: it can do no other except to flow on. It cannot be rushed. It cannot be slowed. Time is ... Time.
Mystery is not mystery unless it unfolds. Here, there, one small group, one whole parish, this one woman, that one man: it can do no other except to unfold in its own slow and secret way. It cannot be forced. It cannot be foreseen. Mystery is ... Mystery.
And that Mystery, again, is like unto a whirlwind. It is a large and powerful storm that is beyond us. As Frost said:
Let chaos storm!
Let cloud shapes swarm!
I wait for form.
In the liturgy, the Church gives place to this once and still powerful storm. Not only does she give it place, she also gives it form. She tells us how she wants to express and to communicate this Mystery in our brief string of time. It is her Mystery, after all, and she knows best how to enter it and how to let it unfold.
The New General Instruction of the Roman Missal gathers up the best of the horizontal development of the last forty years, the full and active and conscious participation the Council sought. It gathers up too the vertical development of all our two thousand years: the notion of the once-for-all sacrifice of Christ, the sheer grace of it all, the wild power of it all, the slow unfolding of it all. The liturgy is the Mystery clothed in Time, in our time. I trust we shall soon feel at ease with the drape and the feel and the fit.
-- Most Rev. Ronald M. Gilmore
Bishop of the Diocese of Dodge City
In other words, we haven't seen enough of the bastardization of the Mass into something that is unrecognizable as Catholic, with priests as "entertainer presiders", with more options than Wall Street, with adlibbing replacing prayers conveying an unmistakable sense of the sacred, of Catholicism, as it was intended as opposed to a benign representation that could never be mistaken for Christ's original product.
This makes about as much sense as saying that the Constitution is an "evolving document," or that "tradition evolves", both oxymoronic concepts. What is the worth of something that can be changed at the whim of those in power in a moral relativistic sense with no concept of absolute moral truths? Has Planned Parenthood vs. Casey taught us nothing, given its decree that every man is a god unto his autonomous unencumbered self, fully capable of making his own laws for the universe in which he lives with no regard whatsoever for the inevitable collision with his neighbor's equally relevant universe. How is order based on such a worthless foundation? Easy answer, it isn't, with anarchy the only possible result.
And when this needless, moreover, dangerous evolution is pawned off as tradition, then we're staring straight in the face of nothing more than the deconstruction of the language to suit an agenda that is anything but Catholic. The "spirit" directing such "chaos" is not the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity; it is diabolic!
The "sacramental economy" that is evident is one in which the sacraments are losing their very Catholicity, their sense of the sacred with entertainment replacing any conveyance of "an outward sign instituted by Christ to give Grace." Far from needing "this time to go on," we need a restoration of the sacred, a restoration of a Mass that didn't need "fixed," a Mass where the theological truths of the Faith were readily apparent for all to see via gesture and prayers that were Catholic to the core.
What is happening is that "Christ's own Paschal Mystery" is becoming devoid of anything Catholic. You can't even find Christ is most Catholic Churchs nowadays. You have to search for Him in the broom closet. Now that's a REAL mystery!
To somehow imply that just because "time changes constantly," the Church's liturgy has to constantly change with time, makes about as much sense as saying that we can arbitrarily decide to drive on the left on the odd numbered days of the month just for the sake of change. The chaos resulting from such a catastrophic whim is exactly on the order of the chaos that we're seeing in the Church as a function of an "evolving liturgy" which conveys the very clear message that if the Mass can change on a daily basis, it's almost hourly in many parishes, as no two priests say the Mass the same way anymore, why can't the teachings of the faith change in that same aforementioned moral relativistic sense?
I disagree with this Kansas bishop. There is no real mystery here. It's very clear what's happening. The Catholic Church is inexorably ceasing to be Catholic as a direct function of the sacred liturgy ceasing to be Catholic. When you sow the wind, you reap the whirlwind.
Given the allowance, propagation, and, in fact, the promotion by many of our bishops of unchecked dissent from Church teaching on faith and morals, which spawned a homosexual subculture in the priesthood, a subculture, that the Church to date is, incredibly, reluctant to wipe out for the sake of its survival, as it similarly is to rein in the dissenters who are destroying the Church from within, I respectfully submit that any sane Catholic would be hard pressed to come to the conclusion that "Frost's Chaos" fits the bill as the desired goal of Catholicism. I recall Jesus calming the storm, not causing it, as recorded in Sacred Scripture.
And are we really talking about the "Church's Mystery," or God's with the Church being the overseer of what God intended, not man? The former gives the impression that anyone calling himself "church" can do what he wants, with God put on the backburner. And there are many who are a part of the "We are Church" crowd, the "me" , not God generation, of pseudo-Catholics. Witness the removal of kneelers and tabernacles from God's House along with anything else that would remind the faithful that they are a part of the Mystical Body of Christ, not man. It's more important in the assembly halls masquerading as Catholic Churches to worship Joe or Sally across the aisle from you, than God, because we're told that God's spiritual presence in His creation is more important than His real presence, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity, in our Churches. This is reinforced by referring to the Church as the "assembly" or "household," anything but something conveying a Catholic sense of the sacred related directly to the Mystical Body of Christ.
We don't kneel down to worship and adore trees, or our neighbors whom we're forced to focus on, given the horizontal architecture of the "church-in-the round." We come to God's House to give Him and Him alone the latria that is due Him.
The "best of the horizontal development of the last forty years" did nothing but cower to the lunatic radical feminist fringe who would have us believe that if they approached a cage at a zoo, observing a sign saying, "beware, man-eating tiger," they would have no problem with walking right into the cage. To somehow imply that this was a benefit to the Church as a compliment to the necessary vertical realization that all things come from God is disingenuous. The truth is that "horizontal" trumped all since the Council, regardless of protestations to the contrary. The natural took precedence over the supernatural with the "god-in-the-mirror" or across the aisle from us having priority over God Almighty in our tabernacles, if He can be found, that is.
We would not need new instructions of the Roman Missal if the Sacred Liturgy had not been diluted for fallacious reasons of "sacramental economy." When a Mass that was not broke, was deemed in need of fixing, all bets were off in terms of everything, the entirety of the Church's teaching being up for grabs, following the example of the liturgical wrecking crews leading us to the chaos of unbelief.
For past installments in this series, see www.DailyCatholic.org/2003for.htm Archives