I går presenterte jeg innledning til tredje hoveddel av boka «The Mass and Modernity», og Fr. Jonathan Robinson fortsetter med å liste opp de neste fem og avsluttende kapitlene:
But what are we going to learn from the present liturgical wilderness and from the forces that have created it? Modernity has left little room for a Catholicism that revolves around the transcendence of God the Father, of the particularity of the revelation of God the Son, and the community as, in itself, a sort of eighth sacrament of the abiding presence of God the Holy Spirit working among us. As a result of these attitudes, the liturgy has been badly damaged, but that is not to say it has been destroyed. The Church has taken a wrong turning in her efforts to reach the world we live in, but the effort itself is in line with the Church’s mission to bring the mercy of Christ to a fallen, poor, and broken world. The various influences that have helped to distort the liturgy also have within them the themes for a genuine renewal of the sacramental life. ….
In the first chapter of this part, I discuss the meaning of the Paschal Mystery, that is, the mystery of Christ’s passion and death, his Resurrection and Ascension. The mystery really is of central importance and in practice has been much invoked by thinkers in today’s Church. Unhappily, the expression has come to be used in such an extended way that all too often one or other of its aspects is emphasized to the detriment of the mystery itself, the most egregious example of this is to identify the mystery with the Resurrection in a way that obscures its essential relationship to the passion and death as well as to the Ascension of am Lord.
In the second chapter I maintain that a renewed awareness of the transcendence of God will go a long way toward reestablishing that awe, beauty, and reverence which should characterize Catholic worship. At the same time, I also show that a heightened awareness of the otherness of God will come about only with a deeper grasp of the particular, historical character of Christ’s life and teaching.
In the third chapter I point out that there must be an altogether more serious and lucid penetration of the supernatural aspect of the Christian community. There is no word that has been more abused in the years since Vatican H, yet there are few words more important for an understanding of the liturgy. Awe and reverence have to manifest themselves; they have to be put into act; and this is done through the liturgy of the Church, the Church that is, in St. Paul’s teaching, the Body of Christ.
In the fourth chapter, I discuss the importance of the Old Rite of Mass for a renewed liturgy. The Tridentine Mass, or whatever it should be called, at least pointed toward God even when it was badly celebrated. This is not to say that the solution to our troubles is a wholesale return to this way of celebrating, but we must at least try to see what it possessed and what the Novus Ordo (the new rite of the Mass approved by Pope Paul VI) in practice puts in its place. What the Old Rite possessed was a clear lesson in the transcendence of God; while the way the Novus Ordo is often celebrated puts the community in the place of this reference to God.
In the fifth chapter I put forward some practical suggestions that, I think, would go a long way toward reestablishing the liturgy as the worship of God, a worship that is offered by the Mystical Body of Christ through the work of the Holy Spirit. These suggestions we probably little more than a «wish list», but they are seriously meant. On the other hand, while I think the liturgy should support or firm up the teaching of the Church,» it cannot by itself repair the present situation. Nevertheless, a restored liturgy would be a powerful force in a genuine renewal of the Church.