We deny to claim "any Superiority to ourself
to defyne, decyde, or determyn any Article or Poynt
of the Christian Fayth and Relligion,
or to chang any Ancient Ceremony of the Church
from the Forme before received and observed
by the Catholick and Apostolick Church."

Norman Simplicity

Norman Simplicity
Click image for original | © Vitrearum (Allan Barton)

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Cor ad cor loquitur

The change in the liturgy marked a distinct change in the use of scripture in the Church, the Mass of Paul VI made scripture essentially didactic, the ancient Lectionary is theophanic, a moment of divine revelation, an encounter with God, but it is also kérugmatic, it was honed to the proclamation of Christ, his death, resurrection and return. The single year cycle means that those things considered important by the Church are returned to repeatedly, year after year. The annual cycle of saints, remember the high significance of the cult of saints in the tradition of the West, their place in the ancient Roman Canon for example, constantly repeats the necessity for Christian virtues.

The scatter-gun approach of the OF Lectionary has meant that scripture is not memorised, as it was by previous generations. Most people's memories do not retain texts over a three year period (six if the cycle is interrupted by a transferred Holyday), and memories are confused by similar texts, for example stories that appear in all the Gospels, like the feeding stories, especially when the writers have different doctrinal reasons for presenting them.

Perhaps one of our big problems as a Church is that Catholic doctrine seems so very complex and that it is not understood by most regular Mass attenders, I think this is the result of the imprecision of the Pauline Lectionary, and that in fact more scripture in the Liturgy often means less scripture in the heart.

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