feb 132016
 

neuhaus_biography I dag har jeg lest ferdig ei bok som kom ut for akkurat ett år siden: Richard John Neuhaus: A Life in the Public Square Neuhaus har betydd mye for meg, helt siden 1991, da jeg begynte å lese det nystartede tidsskriftet First Things, og også hørte at (den tidligere lutherske>) Neuhaus kort tid før dette hadde blitt katolikk. (Jeg skrev litt om mitt forhold til Neuhaus den dagen han døde i januar 2009.)

Biografien ble anmeldt i mange aviser da den kom ut, New York Times skriver bl.a.:

At the time of his death six years ago, the Rev. Richard John Neuhaus was arguably the most prominent conservative Roman Catholic in America. He was leader of the “theocons,” as critics labeled them, right-leaning Christian intellectuals grouped around First Things, a journal Neuhaus founded. Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI knew him personally, as well as by his work, and George W. Bush sought Neuhaus’s counsel before and during his time as president. His 1984 book on the place of faith in politics, “The Naked Public Square,” has been credited with helping to define the climate in which Ronald Reagan won re-election.

Yet Neuhaus did not begin as a conservative, a Catholic or indeed in America. He was born and baptized the son of a Lutheran pastor in Pembroke, Ontario. Later, as a Lutheran pastor himself in New York, Neuhaus was an activist liberal — ally of Martin Luther King in the civil rights struggle, co-founder of Clergy and Laity Concerned About Vietnam and antiwar delegate to the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

Each half of Neuhaus’s life supplies ample material for a biography. …

… A man of the cloth as engaged in public life as Neuhaus was makes a difficult subject for a biography: The cavalcade of events threatens to overwhelm the spiritual side of his life. Boyagoda draws attention back to Neuhaus’s faith whenever he can, particularly in the moving final chapter, as Neuhaus approaches his death. But an adequate spiritual biography would have to be quite different from an account of a public life as full as the one Neuhaus’ led, and inevitably Boyagoda has to choose his focus. Here it is on the outward man, and Boyagoda has explored and explained this fascinating American as well as anyone could have hoped.

feb 122016
 

Videoen over viser noen glimt fra det sensasjonelle møtet mellom pave Paul VI og patriark Athenagoras i Jerusalem 5.-6. januar 1964. DET VAR VEL DEN FØRSTE FORSONINGEN MELLOM KATOLIKKER OG ORTODOKSE SIDEN 1054. Om dette skriver Wikipedia:

Pope Paul VI visited the Orthodox Patriarchs of Jerusalem and Constantinople in 1964 and 1967. He was the first pope since the ninth century to visit the East, labeling the Eastern Churches as sister Churches. He was also the first pope in centuries to meet the heads of various Eastern Orthodox faiths. Notably, his meeting with Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras I in 1964 in Jerusalem led to rescinding the excommunications of the Great Schism, which took place in 1054.

This was a significant step towards restoring communion between Rome and Constantinople. It produced the Catholic-Orthodox Joint declaration of 1965, which was read out on 7 December 1965, simultaneously at a public meeting of the Second Vatican Council in Rome and at a special ceremony in Istanbul. The declaration did not end the schism, but showed a desire for greater reconciliation between the two churches.

Vårt Land skriver en del interessante ting om dagens møte mellom pave Frans og patriarken av Moskva på Cuba, men når de som overskrift og ingress skriver: «Første toppmøte siden 1054. Patriarken og paven lyste hverandre gjensidig i bann for 962 år siden. I dag møtes patriarken og paven på Cuba», blir det feil. For det fantes ingen patriark i Moskva i 1054, det var ikke før i 1448 at den russiske kirken frigjorde seg fra Konstantinopel. Fra Wikipedia:

In 1448, the Russian Church in Moscow became effectively independent from the Patriarchate of Constantinople — when the Russian bishops in Moscow elected their own primate, Jonas, a Russian bishop, without recourse to Constantinople. The Russian church within the bounds of the Grand Duchy of Moscow was thenceforth effectively autocephalous.

Metropolitan Jonas was given the title of Metropolitan of Kiev and All Rus’, but his successors styled themselves as Metropolitans of Moscow and All Rus’. Five years later, Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks. From this point onward the Russian Orthodox Church saw Moscow as the Third Rome, legitimate successor to Constantinople, and the metropolitan of Moscow as head of the Russian Church.

Møtet mellom paven og patriarken av Moskva er svært viktig, men man bør holde tunga rett i munnen.

feb 092016
 

I går reiste vi fra Oslo til Seattle, via Keflavik på Island. Det er den raskeste turen jeg har tatt fra Norge til the Pacific Northwest (dsv Washington og Oregon). Vi reiste fra Gardermoen kl 14.05 and landet i Seattle kl 16.35 samme dag – + ni timers tidsforskjell.

Jeg vet ikke om noen direkte turer fra Norge til USAs vestkyst, vi har tidligere reist (en viss omvei) via København eller Amsterdam, London er selvsagt også mulig. Å reise via USAs østkyst syns jeg er mindre behagelig, for da har man 6 timers flytid igjen over USA. Vi reiste med Icelandair, og var godt fornøyd med turen – det viste seg å være et svært islandsk flyselskap både mht til språk og kultur. Vi byttet fly på Keflavik, men det er jo ikke noen omvei, flyene går den veien i alle fall – vi fløy 2 1/2 time dit og 7 1/2 derfra til Seattle.

Vi skal være i Oregon de siste fem ukene av min studiepermisjon. Jeg skal lese de siste ca 15 bøkene jeg har fått tak i om liturgiens utvikling, og vi skal treffe mange medlemmer av min kones store familie.

feb 072016
 

holth_inkardinert

Slik kan man lese på St Paul menighets nettsider (som også har mange flere bilder):

Under sin visitas i Bergen inkardinerte bp Bernt Eidsvig pastor Erik Andreas Heyerdahl Holt i Oslo Katolske Bispedømme. Pave Frans og Troskongregasjonen har godkjent hans tidligere prestevielse og han fikk dispensasjon fra sølibatet. P. Erik skal tjene som kapellan i St. Paul menighet.

Gratulerer p. Erik!

feb 062016
 

holy_eucharist Jeg har lest ferdig boka The Holy Eucharist – The World’s Salvation, der forfatteren, Joseph de Sainte-Marie, OCD, er nokså kritisk til praksis som har kommet etter 1970 mht konselebrasjon av messen. Han er ikke mot konselebrasjon, og finner det bl.a. naturlig at prester konselebrerer med sin biskop ved spesielle anledninger, men han finner det ikke naturlig at mange prester skal konselebrere messer til stadighet, heller enn å feire egne messer. Han tar opp spørsmål som; blir ett eller flere messeoffer båret fram når mange prester konselebrerer en messe? Og han skiller tydelig mellom seremenoiell konselebrasjon (når f.eks. en biskop feirer messe med assisterende diakoner og en MC), og sakramental konselebrasjon (når flere prester deltar i konsekrasjonen).

Prof. Peter Kwasniewski har skrevet en grundig og positiv anmeldelse av boka på The New Liturgical Movement, og han åpner anmeldelsen slik:

Let me begin with the bottom line. This is the most important book ever to appear in English on the subject of concelebration. It ought to be read by every bishop, priest, religious, teacher of liturgy, and seminary formator, and absolutely anyone with a desire to learn about this complex and sometimes contentious issue.

Fr. Joseph de Sainte-Marie (1931–1985), a professor and specialist in Carmelite spirituality at the Pontifical Theological Faculty ‘Teresianum’ in Rome, published this substantial collection of his writings in 1982, only a few years before his death. One may regret that it has taken over 30 years for an English translation to appear — or better, one may rejoice that it has finally come out for the benefit of those who do not read French. Lest a nearly 600-page tome prompt any dismay, I hasten to repeat that this is a gathering together of a dozen finely-chiseled essays on the Mass and the Holy Eucharist, with special attention to concelebration. …

Har tar også med innholdfortegnelsen til boka:

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction (xi)
Foreword (xvii)

Part I: A Disputed Question
1. Reflections and Questions on the Subject of Concelebration (3)
2. A Critical Note on a ‘Theology of Concelebration’ (29)
3. Concelebration: Sensus Fidei and Theology (81)

Part II: The Historical Inquiry
4. Concelebration: The History of a History (123)
5. Concelebration: An Historical Summary (179)
6. Eucharistic Concelebration in the Magisterium of the Second Vatican Council (203)
7. ‘Useless and Superfluous Masses’ (273)
8. The Church Asks for the Multiplication of Masses (297)

Part III: Theological Reflection
9. ‘Sacrificium Missae’ (323)
10. The Liturgy: Mystery, Symbol, and Sacrament (355)
11. The Mass: Meal, ‘Blessing’, Congregation, or Sacrifice? (425)
12. The Celebration and Multiplication of the Sacrifice (483)

Conclusion (539)

feb 042016
 

Det fins også latinske katolikker fra Irak i Norge, men jeg tror nok de fleste katolikker fra Irak (i Norge og andre steder) tilhører den kaldeiske ritus (som bruker en dialekt av Jesu eget språk, arameisk). Avisa Dagen skriver om disse kaldeiske kristne (og nevner såvidt at de er katolikker) i en artikkel der hovedbudskapet et at alt håp er ute for de kristne i Irak. De skriver bl.a.:

Fader Rooni Yousif er Norges første kaldeiske prest. Han ser ikke lenger noen fremtid for kristne i hjemlandet. «Hvordan kan verden hjelpe de kristne til å bli værende i Irak?»

Vi stiller spørsmålet til Norges nye kaldeiske prest, på koselige Café Jordbærpikene på Tveita senter i Oslo. Svaret er blottet for kos.

«Det er for sent. Det hersker en fullstendig mangel på tillit. De har mistet troen på at de har en fremtid i Irak», svarer fader Rooni kontant.

Svaret ryster meg. Gang på gang har jeg hørt kirkeledere advare mot at Irak tømmes for kristne, hvis de ikke får hjelp til å bli, men aldri før har jeg hørt noen si at det faktisk er for sent.

«Men hvis verden virkelig mobiliserer», prøver jeg.

Den kaldeiske presten rister på hodet. «Det er for sent nå, svarer han. Altfor mange har reist.»

Siden Saddams fall i 2003 har tallet på kristne minket fra drøyt 1,2 millioner til nær 200.000.

Den siste masseflukten startet da IS erobret Mosul og de kristne landsbyene på Ninive-sletten i Nord-Irak sommeren 2014. Ett og et halvt år etter bor IS-flyktningene fremdeles i kummerlige, midlertidige boliger. De mangler det meste, mange av barna får ikke gå på skole, og IS-krigere okkuperer fremdeles hjemmene deres i Mosul og på Ninivesletten.

Lenge oppfordret irakiske kirkeledere de kristne til å vise mot og bli værende i Irak. Det har de fleste lederne sluttet med. …

Les mer om P. Yousif her.

jan 312016
 

sexagesima

I den tradisjonelle kalender feires i dag søndag sexagesima; såmannssøndagen, og vi hører følgende evangelium:

Luk. 8, 4-15.
På den tid da det hadde samlet seg mye folk, og det løp mange fra byene til Jesus, sa han i en lignelse: «En såmann gikk ut og sådde sin sæd, og da han sådde, falt noe langs med veien og ble tråkket ned, og himmelens fugler åt det opp. Og noe falt på stengrunn, og da det vokste opp, visnet det fordi det ikke hadde væte. Og noe falt mellom torner, og tornene vokste opp sammen med det og kvalte det. Og noe falt i god jord, og da det vokste opp, ga det hundre fold.» Da han hadde sagt dette, ropte han: «Den som har ører å høre med, han høre.» Men hans disipler spurte ham hva denne lignelsen skulle bety. Han sa til dem: «Dere skal få vite hemmeligheten i Guds rike; men de andre får det i lignelser, forat de skal se og likevel ikke se, høre og ikke forstå. Dette er lignelsen: Sæden er Guds ord. Det langs med veien er de som hører, men så kommer djevelen og tar ordet bort fra deres hjerte, så de ikke skal tro og bli frelst. Det på stengrunnen er de som tar imot ordet med glede når de hører det, men de har ingen rot; de tror for en tid, men i prøvestunden faller de fra. Men det som falt mellom torner, er de som hører, men kveles mens de vandrer under sorger og rikdom og livets lyst, og bærer ikke frukt. Men det i den gode jorden er de som hører ordet med et godt og edelt hjerte og tar vare på det, og de bærer frukt i tålmod.»

Om denne tesketn skriver Den hellige Gregor den store (til Matutin):

Homily by Pope St Gregory the Great. 5th on the Gospels.
Dearly beloved brethren, the passage from the Holy Gospel which ye have just heard, needeth not so much that I should explain it, as that I should seek to enforce its lesson. The Truth Himself hath explained it, and, after that, it beseemeth not man’s frailty to fritter away His exposition by any further comment. But there is, in that very explanation by the Lord, somewhat, which it behoveth us well to weigh. If it were but we who bade you believe that by the seed is signified the word; by the field, the world; by the birds, the devils; and by the thorns, riches ye would perchance doubt of the truth of our explanation. Therefore the Lord Himself hath vouchsafed to give this explanation, and that, not for this parable only, but that ye may know in what manner to interpret others, whereof He hath not given the meaning.

jan 302016
 

Jeg har begynt å lese boka The Holy Eucharist – The World’s Salvation, av Joseph de Sainte-Marie, OCD. Den handler om konselabrasjon av messen; hvordan det har foregått gjennom tidene, og hvorvidt det er en god praksis eller ikke.

holy_eucharistAmazon skriver om boka bl.a.:

The present book, originally published in French, and now in English with a new foreword by Dom Alcuin Reid OSB, is a splendid example ante litteram of the task of the Hermeneutic of Continuity so courageously undertaken by Pope Benedict XVI. Without calling for a change in the post-Conciliar discipline of the Latin Church, the author offers a complete and trenchant historical and dogmatic critique of the recent neglect of the individually celebrated Mass in favour of concelebration.

The discipline of the church after Sacrosanctum Concilium, up until the 1982 Code of Canon Law and the General Instruction of the Roman Missal for the third edition of the Missal of Paul VI, has always asserted the freedom of priests to celebrate individually, yet the liturgical and theological atmosphere of seminaries and religious communities has rarely favoured this freedom.

Here is a careful discussion of the value of the multiplication of celebrations of the Eucharist, in the light both of the nature of the Eucharistic Sacrifice itself and of the theology of its fruits. A meticulous study of the history of the practice of concelebration shows that the present practice of daily concelebration, especially among simple priests without their Ordinary presiding, far from being a return to an ancient norm, is in fact a new development.

The author concludes with a carefully nuanced set of practical proposals which, while giving to concelebration its due place, would serve to make better use of the infinite riches contained in the Holy Sacrifice. This conclusion may be summed up by the ancient prayer over the gifts found in both forms of the Roman Mass and quoted in the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council: As often as the memorial of this Victim is celebrated, the work of our redemption is accomplished. May the careful examination of this beautifully reasoned study lead to a renewed sense of the efficacy of the Church’s Offering and of its frequent and devout celebration by her priests.

jan 272016
 

muir_ritual_l For et pa dager siden leste jeg ferdig boka: Ritual in Early Modern Europe, av Edward Muir, en ganske interessant gjennomgang av ritualer i samfunnet og i kirker i siste del av middelalderen. Amazon skriver bl.a. dette om boka:

Edward Muir draws on extensive historical research to emphasize the persistence of traditional Christian ritual practices even as educated elites attempted to privilege reason over passion, textual interpretation over ritual action, and moral rectitude over gaining access to supernatural powers. Edward Muir discusses wide ranging themes such as rites of passage, carnivalesque festivity, the rise of manners, Protestant and Catholic Reformations, the alleged anti-Christian rituals of Jews and witches. This edition examines the impact on the European understanding of ritual from the discoveries of new civilizations in the Americas and missionary efforts in China and adds more material about rituals peculiar to women.

jan 262016
 

Denne søndagen feires søndag sexagesima etter den tradisjonelle kalenderen, i St Hallvard kirkes kapell kl 08.00.

Dette er den tradisjonelle såmanns-søndagen, og evangeliet fra Lukas 8, 4-15. begynner slik:

På den tid da det hadde samlet seg mye folk, og det løp mange fra byene til Jesus, sa han i en lignelse: «En såmann gikk ut og sådde sin sæd, og da han sådde, falt noe langs med veien og ble tråkket ned, og himmelens fugler åt det opp. Og noe falt på stengrunn, og da det vokste opp, visnet det fordi det ikke hadde væte. Og noe falt mellom torner, og tornene vokste opp sammen med det og kvalte det. Og noe falt i god jord, og da det vokste opp, ga det hundre fold.» …

Les alle dagens tekster og bønner her – og se en oversikt over vårens messer her.

jan 222016
 

thomson_western_church_l Western Church in the Middle Ages, skrevet John A. F. Thomson, var en ganske interessant bok, som tar for seg Kirkens historie i litt over 1000 år (fra 450 til 1515) – selv om den omtalt en hel del ting som jeg visste fra før. Slik skriver Amazon om boka:

From its origins in the ancient world as a rival to traditional paganism, Christianity has become one of the great world religions. How the Church took over spiritual control of Western Europe to become the foundation of medieval life, setting the moral agenda of society and dominating its intellectual world, is the guiding enquiry at the heart of this book.

Covering the period between the fall of the Roman Empire and the Reformation, the account is structured in three chronological blocks, starting with the gradual development of unity within the Western Church up to the 11th century, followed by the period of centralization between the 11th and 13th centuries, and concluding with the break-up of this centralization in the later Middle Ages.

Organizational developments and changes in spirituality and doctrine are examined, and the history of the papacy is situated in the wider context of both ecclesiastical and lay society. Intellectual developments and the rise of heresy, at both elite and popular levels, are the focus of an exploration of the mental world of medieval Christendom.

jan 212016
 

lubac_corpus_mysticum_l Kardinal Henri Lubac, SJ, utga denne boka (på fransk) i 1944, men så vidt jeg forstår kom det ikke noen engelsk oversettelse før i 2011. Amazon skriver om boka:

One of the major figures of 20th century Catholic theology, Henri Cardinal de Lubac SJ was particularly renowned for his attention to the doctrine of the Church and its life within the contemporary world. In this book, de Lubac opens an initial exploration of the Church as made by the Eucharist and gives new expression to that mystery in which the Church is believed to consist. …. With the publication of this English translation of «Corpus Mysticum», this important text of contemporary Catholic ecclesiology and sacramental theology is made available to the Anglophone world and joins the substantial range of de Lubac’s works now accessible to scholars.

Lubac var på 50-tallet regnet som en svært radikal teolog, og Vatikanet ga ham faktisk undervisningsforbud og forhåndssensurerte alle hans bøker i nesten 10 år – men i 1958 var det slutt på hans problemer, og pave Johannes XXIII og Paul VI hadde stor tillit til ham. Innholdet i denne boka ser ut til å være en av de mest sentrale av Lubacs «oppdagelser». (Slik skriver Wikipedia)

Although the precise nature of his contribution during the council is difficult to determine, his writings were certainly an influence on the conciliar and post-conciliar periods, particularly in the area of Ecclesiology where one of his concerns was to understand the Church as the community of the whole people of God rather than just the clergy.

Muligens er dette grunnen til at jeg egentlig ikke klarte å lese denne boka, men bare skummet gjennom den; at Kirken er alle de troende og ikke bare presteskapet, er for opplagt for meg til å klare å lese 300 sider for å få det bevist.

Til sist om Lubac; han er en av de mange teologene som før konsilet ble regnet som radikal, men som etter konsilet mer og mer plasserte seg på den konservative fløyen. Wikipedia skriver også dette om ham:

In the years after Vatican II, de Lubac came to be known as a ‘conservative theologian’, his views completely in line with the magisterium—in contrast to his progressive reputation in the first part of his life. Contributing to this reputation, in 1972 de Lubac, alongside Joseph Ratzinger who later became Pope Benedict XVI, Hans Urs von Balthasar, Walter Kasper and Karl Lehmann, founded the journal Communio—a journal which acquired a reputation as offering a more conservative theology than Concilium.

jan 202016
 

16jan_studier_sol
Her sitter jeg og leser i morgensola. Vi har mellom 18 og 22 grader her på Gran Canaria, det er visst ca 30 grader varmere enn i Oslo akkurat nå (eller kanskje litt mer). Vi har ikke morgensol i leiligheten der vi bor, så jeg tar otfte en fluktstol og går 200 m for å lese i morgensola – bildet over.

Bildet under viser utsikten fra vår terrasse rett etter solnedgang.

2016jan1_utsikt

jan 182016
 

Det er med stor sorg jeg må meddele at Lars Roar Langslet døde i morgentimene idag, noen få dager efterat han hadde mottatt sykesalvingen og viaticum. …

Langslet konverterte i 1963. Det annet vatikankonsil var begynt, og Kirken hadde behov for gode formidlere. Den fremste av disse var hans nære venn, pater Hallvard Rieber-Mohn, men sammen gav de to og biskop John Willem Gran norsk katolisisme en stemme som ble forstått og tatt alvorlig. Den katolske tro var for første gang siden reformasjonen et stort og viktig tema i norsk presse og åndsliv. Lars Roar Langslet fortsatte å skrive om sin tro helt til det siste. En viktig bok var Tanker om tro (2013), som jeg anbefaler sterkt. …

Biskop Eidsvig skriver dette (og mer) og Langslet i dag.

jan 172016
 

baumstark_liturgy En svært velutdannet tysker, Carl Anton Joseph Maria Dominikus Baumstark, skrev en bok i 1921, som jeg nettopp har lest. Om ham kan vi lese:

Carl Anton Joseph Maria Dominikus Baumstark (4 August 1872, Konstanz – 31 May 1948, Bonn) was a German Orientalist, philologist and liturgist. His main area of study was Oriental liturgical history, its development and its influence on literature, culture and art.

He studied classical and Oriental philology, obtaining his habilitation for both subjects in 1898 at Heidelberg. In 1899, he relocated to Rome, where in 1901, he became an editor of the academic journal Oriens Christianus. Later on, he worked for 15 years as an instructor at a Roman Catholic secondary school in Sasbach, Baden.

In 1921 he became an honorary professor in Bonn, then served as a professor of Semitic studies and comparative liturgal science at Nijmegen (from 1923), followed by a professorship of Arabic and Islamic studies at the University of Utrecht (from 1926). From 1930 to 1935, he was a professor of Oriental studies at the University of Münster.

Om boka, som måtte vente 90 år en engelsk oversettelse, kan vi lese på amazon.co.uk:

In 1921, Anton Baumstark delivered two lectures on the development of the Roman Rite to a gathering at the Abbey of Maria Laach. Abbot Ildefons Herwegen offered to publish those lectures, but Baumstark decided to write a book on the topic instead, which was published two years later as On the Historical Development of the Liturgy. It would be another sixteen years before he produced Comparative Liturgy, for which he is better known. Together the two books lay out Baumstark’s liturgical methodology. Comparative Liturgy presents his method; On the Historical Development of the Liturgy offers his model. For nearly a century, On the Historical Development of the Liturgy has been valued by specialists in the field of liturgical studies, both for its description of comparative liturgy and for the portrayal of patterns Baumstark discerns in liturgical development. Also significant are the hypotheses Baumstark proposes and the evidence he brings to bear on problems in liturgical history. In this annotated edition, Fritz West provides the first English translation of this work by Anton Baumstark.

Boka var interessant nok, men jeg leste bare i liten grad de mange og lange kommentarene til oversetteren, så da ble den ikke så mye mer enn halvparten av de 315 sidene den egentlig inneholder.

jan 162016
 

Nyheter fra Den anglikanske kirke denne uka, at the Episcopal Church of the USA (der de fleste anglikanere i USA er medlemmer) er blitt suspendert fra det anglikanske kirkefellesskapet for tre år pga sitt syn på og sine vedtak om homofile ekteskap, har en betydning også for katolikker – skriver Fr Dwight Longenecker (tidligere anglikansk, nå katolsk prest):

As Catholics view this debacle there are several signals we would be foolish to ignore. First, the Africans are here to stay and they mean business. The North-South clash over issues of human sexuality is as vocal, visible and vibrant in the Catholic Church as it is in the Anglican. Who can forget Cardinal Kasper’s arrogant dismissal of the Africans last Spring, and the Africans assertiveness when sidelined from the synod on the family? The African Anglican victory will doubtless strengthen the resolve of not only the other Anglican African bishops, but also their Catholic brothers in the ongoing battles for the family.

Secondly, the Africans’ victory in this matter will re-orient those in the North who adhere to Biblical Christianity. Historic Christians in both the Anglican and Catholic churches will look to the Africans as the defenders of orthodoxy. Weary of bishops who seem timid and spineless in the North’s culture wars, the Africans will appear to be the saviors of historic and Biblical Christianity. The Anglican Church of North America is already aligned with African bishops. As the lights go down on the Francis papacy, Catholics of the North may well look to the continent of Africa for the next successor of Peter.

Finally, there may be an ecumenical kickback from the Anglican decision. One of the problems that have bogged down Anglican-Catholic discussions is the fact that the ecumenical blabfests have been dominated by theologians from the North who are notoriously ambiguous in their thought and language. Too often “progress” has been made by both sides watering down their language sufficiently and making statements ambiguous enough that both sides can agree. The Africans bring a certain edge and clarity to discussions which are lacking in the more nuanced North. Ecumenical discussions are bound to take a fresh turn with the increasing dominance of the Africans.

Finally, this decision is the first solid sign that the long-predicted shift in global Christianity’s center of gravity from the disenchanted, decadent and declining North to the vibrant and growing South is now upon us.

jan 142016
 

omalley_trent_l Jeg har nå lest ferdig Trent: What Happened at the Council, av John O’Malley, SJ, ei svært lærerik og god bok. Det er faktisk slik at dette er den første skikkelige gjennomgangen av konsilet i Trent. Vatikanet åpnet ikke alle arkivene fra Trent før ca 1880, og en stor gjennomgang av konsilet i fire bind fra 50-tallet er nesten ikke blitt oversatt til andre språk (bare bind 1 og 2 til engelsk).

Det ble skrevet mange anmeldelser av boka da den kom i 2013, bl.a. HER, HER, HER og HER. Fra den siste anmeldelsen tar jeg med følgende utdrag:

The fact that only 29 bishops out of an episcopate of perhaps as many as 700 showed up for the council’s opening helped make it an object of derision and satire from its first moment. The further fact that it dragged on for a seemingly interminable length did not help its reputation. Its final decrees, moreover, are dense with theological and canonical technicalities that make them extraordinarily susceptible to misunderstanding except by for scholars initiated into the subtleties of canon law and medieval Scholasticism.

Aside from the decrees, which were published almost immediately, virtually all the background materials — records of the debates in the council, diaries, correspondence, etc. — were inaccessible until 1880 when the Vatican archives were opened. Even so, it took scholars from 1901 until 2001, a full century, to piece them together, edit them and finally begin publishing them.

With those volumes now in hand and with the scholarship, principally German, expended upon them since the volumes began appearing, we are finally able to dispel the myths and misunderstandings that have plagued the council for centuries. A big myth, for instance, is that the council was a smooth-functioning machine intent upon launching an offensive against Protestants and in making the Catholic laity tow the line in their behavior and thinking.

Like all myths, this one has more than a grain of truth in it. The council did, in fact, settle upon a set of procedures for itself that allowed it to function relatively smoothly, but there were just enough ambiguities in it to cause periodic explosions of outrage and denunciations that the council was being manipulated. The biggest ambiguity, which underlay many disruptions, was the pope’s relationship to the council. To what extent did the pope have the authority to determine the council’s course? If there ever was an issue-under-the-issues at the Council of Trent, this was it. Of it, however, the council’s final decrees breathe not a word.

While it is certainly true that the theologians and bishops at the council were heavily prejudiced against Luther and his followers, they tried their best to be fair. They realized, moreover, that at the insistence of Emperor Charles V the council was convoked to try to effect a reconciliation with the Reformers. That this utopian goal could not be attained was mainly due to factors beyond the council’s control. The hour was too late.

Fr O’Malley holder her (under) i 2013, på Gregoriana i Roma, en times forelesning om konsilet i Trent (med materiale fra boka) som man også kan lære mye av. (To personer innleder først, og så begynner O’Malley etter ca 7 minutter.)

jan 122016
 

omalley_trent
Jeg har tatt en liten pause fra liturgilesing, og har i går og i dag lest Trent: What Happened at the Council, av John O’Malley, SJ – den er på 350 sider, så det tar nok et par dager til å lese den ferdig. Den er utgitt på Harvard University Press, og på amazon.com kan man bl.a. lese dette om boka:

In Trent: What Happened at the Council, distinguished author John O’Malley disentangles for us the complicated history of one of the most important ecumenical councils ever held, extracting for us the essential issues from the often animated discussions and the technically formulated decrees on doctrine and reform. Written in a lively literary style without recondite terminology, this compendious account of the Council of Trent will be useful not only to students of church history, theology, and canon law, but also to anyone interested in the religious and cultural developments of the early modern Western world.

Jeg hører til blant de som har visst altfor lite om konsilet i Trento i Nord-Italia, og visste f.eks. ikke at det deltok en nordisk biskop, men i boka nevnes Uppsalas erkebiskop Olaus Magnus. Svensk Wikipedia skriver slik om han:

Olaus Magnus utnämndes 26 oktober 1544 år av påven Paulus III till katolska kyrkans ärkebiskop i Uppsala. Vid det tridentinska mötet 1545 deltog han således som svensk delegat, och han hade föresatt sig att återinföra katolicismen i Sverige, men bodde kvar i Rom. …