I foredraget til Prof. Manfred Hauke: “The “Basic Structure“ (Grundgestalt) of the Eucharistic Celebration According to Joseph Ratzinger” – som kan leses her – var det først og fremst noen tanker av Romano Guardini som for meg forklarer hvordan vi er kommet dit vi er i dag; at messen knapt forstås som et offer båret fram for Gud mer. Legg merke til hvordan kadinal Ratzinger vurderer dette spørsmålet (uthevet av meg).
The discussion of our topic, in its stricter sense, begins in 1939 with some meditations of Romano Guardini, … The core of the discussion revolves around the idea that, according to Guardini, the “structure” (or “form, figure, shape”, in German Gestalt) and its “content” (Gehalt) are entirely different things: the Holy Mass, in its “structure”, is a meal, but its “content” is a sacrifice. This divergence between liturgical structure and dogmatic content, according to Ratzinger, “must be regarded as the central problem of the liturgical reform. Failure to deal with it has resulted in a great many of the individual problems which have since preoccupied us.” …
… The starting point of our discussion is the appearance of a devotional book by Guardini in 1939, entitled Meditations before Mass (Besinnung vor der Feier der heiligen Messe). This work goes back to a series of short meditations held by Guardini for young people from 1930 to 1932 at Castle Rothenfels in Bavaria. According to Guardini, every “authentic liturgical action … contains a basic structure [Grundgestalt] which supports it and which gives to it its specific life.” The sacraments, especially, “are no mere apportionments of divine gifts, but life events, constructed according to the essence of man, whose soul expresses itself in the body, and whose body is formed by the soul. ‘Form’ [‘Gestalt’] is the manner in which the human essence is alive. … Therefore one of the most important tasks of liturgical education is to reveal as clearly and as vigorously as possible the interior structure of the divine events. So what is the basic structure of the Mass? It is that of the meal.”
In support of this thesis, Guardini refers especially to the Last Supper, and then continues: “The supporting structure of the Mass is the meal. The sacrifice does not emerge as structure, but remains behind the whole. In this way, it is not pushed back. Already in the history of religion, every cultic meal, or even ultimately every meal, depends on it. … The animal that should serve for food must be immolated, properly speaking, before the altar, because blood and life belong to God … From the altar, from the hands of the Lord, man then receives the immolated victim and uses it as nourishment.” Applied to the Mass, this means: “Its structure is the meal; behind it – not as structure, but as reality, as fountain, as condition – is the sacrifice.”
Guardini forstod selv ganske snart at hans tanker ble misforstått av mange, og gjorde forandringer i senere utgaver av skriftet:
In the fourth edition of 1947, Guardini omits his expositions on the “structure” of the Holy Mass. He explains this omission in his preface, writing: “the chapter ‘The Form of Commemoration, the Meal’ … had to be omitted because it gave rise to certain misunderstandings. … The reflections of the chapter dealt with … a pure problem of form [Formproblem]. They were not, however, understood in this way, but they were implicated in the old controversy in which the Catholic doctrine says that the Mass is ‘a true and proper sacrifice’ … The reflections of the mentioned chapter did not concern, not even in a minimal way, this controversy. …
På tross av dette inneholdt senere utgaver likevel det Guardini selv hadde tatt bort.