jan 062016
 

monty_sense_of_sacred Jeg har startet på et ganske stort verk (650 s), om katolske liturgier (både messen og andre liturgier, dåp, konfirmasjon etc) i middelalderen: A Sense of the Sacred: Roman Catholic Worship in the Middle Ages, av James Monti.

Ignatius press presenterer boka slik:

This incomparable volume presents a comprehensive exploration and explanation of medieval liturgical celebrations. The reverent prayers, hymns and rubrics used in the Middle Ages are described in detail and interpreted through the commentary of scholars from the same time period, the era which is also known as the “Age of Faith”.

Collected here is a wide range of ceremonies, encompassing the seven sacraments, the major feasts of the liturgical year (such as Christmas, Easter, and Corpus Christi), and special liturgical rites (from the coronation of the pope to the blessing of expectant mothers). The sacred celebrations have been drawn from countries across western and central Europe-from Portugal to Poland-but particular attention has been given to liturgical texts of medieval Spain, which until now have received relatively little attention from scholars.

Historian James Monti has done exhaustive research on medieval liturgical manuscripts, early printed missals, and the writings of medieval liturgists and theologians so that the treasures they contain can inspire a sense of the sacred in future generations of Catholics.

Et par anmeldere sier om boka:

“James Monti’s treatise is an astonishing achievement, a book that can and will shape a new generation of intellectuals who are serious about the Catholic liturgy. Despite the title, this book is not only about medieval liturgy. It’s about inspiring the creation of, and the provision of access to, truly sacred spaces in our time, even in a world that seems so barren of them. My own special interest is in Gregorian chant, but Monti’s book helps broaden the picture to include a spiritual panorama of extraordinary breadth and depth. We have so much to learn from the past and so much to work toward for a bright and beautiful future of recaptured truth.”

“Among the ambiguous legacy of the Liturgical Movement of the twentieth century is the neglect and incomprehension of medieval liturgy. This book is a welcome contribution towards redressing this imbalance. James Monti recovers the tradition of mystical commentary on the sacred rites, a common heritage of East and West, and enriches it with his vast historical erudition. This volume will serve as a useful resource for anyone who wishes to enter into the spirit of the liturgy that shaped a millennium of Christian history.”

jan 052016
 

lang_voice_of_church De to bøkene jeg nettopp har lest av Lang er The Voice of the Church at Prayer: Reflections on Liturgy and Language og Signs of the Holy One: Liturgy, Ritual, and Expression of the Sacred. To gode bøker, men det er nokså korte (og for det meste enkle), så det var ikke så mye ny informasjon for meg i dem.

Den første boka beskrives slik hos ignatius.com:

Pope Benedict XVI has made the liturgy a central theme of his pontificate, and he has paid special attention to the vitally important role of language in prayer. This historical and theological study of the changing role of Latin in the Roman Catholic Church sheds light on some of the Holy Father’s concerns and some of his recent decisions about the liturgy.

The Fathers of the Second Vatican Council allowed for extended use of the vernacular at Mass, but they maintained that Latin deserved pride of place in the Roman Rite. The outcome, however, was that modern translations of the prayers of the Mass replaced the Latin prayers.

What was the reason for the Council’s decision and why is there now a desire for greater use of Latin in Catholic worship? Why have some post-conciliar English translations of the prayers of the Mass been replaced?

Fr. Lang answers these questions by first analyzing the nature of sacred language. He then traces the beginnings of Christian prayer to the Scriptures and the Greek spoken at the time of the apostles. Next he recounts the slow and gradual development of Latin into the sacred language of the Western Church and its continuing use throughout the Middle Ages. Finally, he addresses the rise of modern languages and the ongoing question of whether the participation of the laity at Mass is either helped or hindered by the use of Latin.

lang_signs_of_holy

Den andre boka er beskrevet slik:

Catholic liturgy is far more than its texts. It is a synthesis that also includes several other elements—gesture, music, art, and architecture—which are aspects of the non-verbal language of the sacred and are what make the liturgy beautiful.

Father Lang’s consideration of the beauty of the liturgy addresses the modern notion that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, that the experience of beauty is entirely subjective. This idea makes it difficult to articulate criteria for what is beautiful, yet sacred liturgy does indeed have objective measures for evaluating its principal elements. Reflecting upon these and quoting from authoritative Church documents, Father Lang discusses sacred music, art, and architecture, and demonstrates how the beauty of these elements makes present the sacred.

Pope Benedict XVI said, “The greatness of the liturgy depends—we shall have to repeat this frequently—on its non-spontaneity.” Continuous liturgical experimentation is unable to induce a sense of meaning or peace, writes Father Lang, because novelty does not satisfy the yearning for the Transcendent within the human psyche, which is rarely far from the surface.

jan 032016
 

daily_sacrifice Jeg har nå lest ferdig ei bok jeg må innrømme at jeg ikke likte noe særlig. Det er Sacrifice Unveiled, The True Meaning of Christian Sarifice, skrevet av Robert Daly, SJ. Boka ble utgitt i 2009 men forfatteren har visst arbeidet med offer-temaet siden 60-tallet, og visst oppdaget mye nytt via fenomenoligiske og mimetiske teorier, og en grunnleggende forståelse av at offeret (og eukaristien) er Trinitarisk (hva nå det skal bety). I praksis fører det til at det er lite igjen av katolske forståelse av Kristi offer, og av eukaristien.

Daly har også skrevet en kortere framstilling av det boka handler om, og derfra siterer jeg:

… Traditional Western atonement theory — at least in its extreme, but all-too common forms — ultimately reduces to something like the following caricature: (1) God’s honor is damaged by sin; (2) God demanded a bloody victim to pay for this sin; (3) God is assuaged by the victim; (4) the death of Jesus the victim functioned as a payoff that purchased salvation for us.

Such a theory is literally monstrous in some of its implications. For when it is absolutized or pushed to its “theo-logical” conclusions and made to replace the Incarnation as central Christian doctrine, it tends to veil from human view (from Protestants as well as from Catholics) the merciful and loving God of biblical revelation. Despite my books and articles on the subject, I had for many years no satisfactory answer to this problem.

That changed when, serendipitously forced to edit Ed Kilmartin’s last book, I discovered the trinitarian understanding of sacrifice to which I now turn. Authentic Christian, that is, Trinitarian Understanding of Sacrifice Constantly fine-tuning my own understanding of it, … First of all, Christian sacrifice is not some object that we manipulate; it is not primarily a ceremony or ritual; nor is it something that we “do” or “give up.” For it is, first and foremost, something deeply personal: a mutually self-giving event that takes place between persons. Actually it is the most profoundly personal and interpersonal act of which a human being is capable or in which a human being can participate.

It begins in a kind of first “moment,” not with us but with the self-offering of God the Father in the gift-sending of the Son. Christian sacrifice continues its “process of becoming” in a second “moment,” in the self-offering “response” of the Son, in his humanity and in the power of the Holy Spirit, to the Father and for us. Christian sacrifice continues its coming-to-be, and only then does it begin to become Christian sacrifice in our lives when we, in human actions that are empowered by the same Spirit that was in Jesus, begin to enter into that perfect, en-spirited, mutually self-giving, mutually self-communicating personal relationship that is the life of the Blessed Trinity. …..