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Author Topic: Vatican II, the good, the bad the ugly  (Read 12679 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: October 09, 2009, 12:12:40 PM »

Hello everyone, maybe some of you could enlighten me to some more history of the RCC.  I know there have been a lot of changes within the RCC since VAT II, and there is a lot of disgruntled opinions of the aftermath of VAT II.  In a brief manner could someone enlighten me to these matters.  I know the liturgy changed, some say it was to conform to protestantism.  What brought this on, what were the major changes of VAT II, and why did the church feel the need to change?    I could get answers from CAF but at this time I prefer to get some answers from some outside resources.  Thanks, Caleb

I apologize if I offended anyone with the subject title it just seemed appropriate considering the many opinions on the subject. 
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« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2009, 12:39:30 PM »

This is a great topic for discussion, but it also involves opening a HUGE can of worms!   laugh

Since it is such a VAST topic, I can only offer you some impressions that I have garnered through experience and some research regarding some issues.....this is really too big a topic in a way...maybe it would be better served to be divided into several threads, I don't know...on the other hand, it could be quite fascinating to consider people's overall impressions....

I know that this will fly in the face of what many reactionary (occasionally thoughtful) people might say, but I think a lot of the liturgical reforms that came out of Vatican II were really positive.  Sure, the music could be very beautiful in the so-called Tridentine rite, but so much of what went on was just the the property of the priests:  I mean, the entire and I mean the whole canon of the mass ( and other very important parts) was recited silently by the priest, with no lay participation whatsoever!  Now, of course, there are indeed other problems with the Novus Ordo, and I don't disagree with some of the criticisms that have been made about it. nor can I agree with some extreme things that have happened at times in some places when it comes to interpreting the guidelines of Vatican II in an irresponsible way.  ( I am not happy about liturgical dance or other weird goings-on that have sometimes made an appearance in Catholic liturgy.)  I am anticipating a huge influx of postings  criticising  me for preferring the Novus OrdoWink

There are a lot of other things that I would love to discuss, when I have time.  I hope that some of our Catholic  and formerly Catholic posters chime in with some thoughts.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2009, 12:56:13 PM by Pravoslavbob » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2009, 01:53:32 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists, who were bent on synchronizing the Latin rite with Protestantism, in a spirit of misplaced ecumenism. You won't find texts of the council authorizing communion in the hand, mass facing people, removal of altar rails etc...  I really don't know if any of this can be undone.

As for the council itself, it reformulated some of the church's teachings along conciliar lines. In another link at this forum, Metropolitan John Zizoulas remarked that the RCC (under influence of Yves Congar) began to embrace a eucharistic ecclesiology, along the lines formulated by Nicholas Afanassieff (who authored an essay in "The Primacy of Peter"). Much is made on some of the bulletin boards of the Melkite Catholic influence at the Council as well. Vatican II also pushed for "de-Latinization" of the Eastern Catholic churches, so that they could recover their heritage. The liturgical trianwreck that occured in the wake of Vatican II was a tragedy, but I think on the whole the council pushed the Catholic church in the right direction. I don't see a full reunion with the East any time soon, but if that day comes, I think Vatican II will have played a role in that.

I've been at unsung Low Masses in Latin and don't much care for them... A full Latin High Mass - with all the "smells and bells" is a real treat, but I've only ever seen that done once. There is an ongoing "reform of the reform", an attempt to correct the liturigcal abuses, including cleaned up English texts. I'm sure it will offend many but I hope they push it through.

According to "traditionalists", there are three modes of thinking in the Catholic church - there are liberals, there are conservatives, and there are traditionalists. Those who are "ultramontane" and reject Vatican II - which covers many of the SSPX followers - fall under traditionalist. From an outsider's perspective, conservatives resemble Ultramontanes - both groups are very unhappy with the liturigical changes and adhere to the church's traditional teachings. However, conservatives also accept Vatican II and (properly translated and celebrated and ritualized) the Novus Ordo Mass. All the post-Conciliar popes are "conservatives." This conservative/traditionalist faultline is nearly invisible to those outside the church but it is real. And then there are the liberals, who want the RCC to embrace modernity and have much in common with ecumenist liberals in other confessions.

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« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2009, 02:14:23 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists, who were bent on synchronizing the Latin rite with Protestantism, in a spirit of misplaced ecumenism. You won't find texts of the council authorizing communion in the hand, mass facing people, removal of altar rails etc...  I really don't know if any of this can be undone.

This parallels my thoughts on the matter.

I am old enough to remember the beauty of Latin Mass as a child. The changes happened gradually. It seemed to me that the mass began to adopt some protestant features.

Now, having been acclimated to the Divine Liturgy for about ten years, when I experience the RC novus ordo for weddings or funerals, I am shocked at how truly "protestant" it feels to me.
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« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2009, 03:38:51 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists

And many of the changes most strongly associated with V2 were never mentioned at the council, much less recommended or mandated.

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« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2009, 04:01:09 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists, who were bent on synchronizing the Latin rite with Protestantism, in a spirit of misplaced ecumenism. You won't find texts of the council authorizing communion in the hand, mass facing people, removal of altar rails etc...  I really don't know if any of this can be undone.

This parallels my thoughts on the matter.

I am old enough to remember the beauty of Latin Mass as a child. The changes happened gradually. It seemed to me that the mass began to adopt some protestant features.

Now, having been acclimated to the Divine Liturgy for about ten years, when I experience the RC novus ordo for weddings or funerals, I am shocked at how truly "protestant" it feels to me.

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists

And many of the changes most strongly associated with V2 were never mentioned at the council, much less recommended or mandated.

Very true. Novus Ordo is a later invention, since Vatican II had very intelligent ideas in mind. In particular, its canons impose the preservation of the mass in Latin
Quote
    1. Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites.
    2. But since the use of the mother tongue, whether in the Mass, the administration of the sacraments, or other parts of the liturgy, frequently may be of great advantage to the people, the limits of its employment may be extended. This will apply in the first place to the readings and directives, and to some of the prayers and chants, according to the regulations on this matter to be laid down separately in subsequent chapters.
    3. These norms being observed, it is for the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned in Art. 22, 2, to decide whether, and to what extent, the vernacular language is to be used; their decrees are to be approved, that is, confirmed, by the Apostolic See. And, whenever it seems to be called for, this authority is to consult with bishops of neighboring regions which have the same language.
no mention is made of prayer "ad popolum" by the priest at consecration (the Tridentine Mass only allowed some seven moments in its course where the priest was allowed to look at the faithful, but consecration wasn't one of them) and it was even meant to restore Communion ab utraque. Novus Ordo was introduced by Paul VI in 1969, four years after the end of the Council. So it is wrong to associate the Council, and the Pope promoting it (John XXIII who was liturgically speaking a traditionalist) with the liturgical abominations of Novus Ordo. I read somewhere that he later repented of what he had done, but it was now too late.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2009, 04:17:10 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists, who were bent on synchronizing the Latin rite with Protestantism, in a spirit of misplaced ecumenism. You won't find texts of the council authorizing communion in the hand, mass facing people, removal of altar rails etc...  I really don't know if any of this can be undone.

This parallels my thoughts on the matter.

I am old enough to remember the beauty of Latin Mass as a child. The changes happened gradually. It seemed to me that the mass began to adopt some protestant features.

Now, having been acclimated to the Divine Liturgy for about ten years, when I experience the RC novus ordo for weddings or funerals, I am shocked at how truly "protestant" it feels to me.

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists

And many of the changes most strongly associated with V2 were never mentioned at the council, much less recommended or mandated.

Very true. Novus Ordo is a later invention, since Vatican II had very intelligent ideas in mind. In particular, its canons impose the preservation of the mass in Latin
Quote
    1. Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites.
    2. But since the use of the mother tongue, whether in the Mass, the administration of the sacraments, or other parts of the liturgy, frequently may be of great advantage to the people, the limits of its employment may be extended. This will apply in the first place to the readings and directives, and to some of the prayers and chants, according to the regulations on this matter to be laid down separately in subsequent chapters.
    3. These norms being observed, it is for the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned in Art. 22, 2, to decide whether, and to what extent, the vernacular language is to be used; their decrees are to be approved, that is, confirmed, by the Apostolic See. And, whenever it seems to be called for, this authority is to consult with bishops of neighboring regions which have the same language.
no mention is made of prayer "ad popolum" by the priest at consecration (the Tridentine Mass only allowed some seven moments in its course where the priest was allowed to look at the faithful, but consecration wasn't one of them) and it was even meant to restore Communion ab utraque. Novus Ordo was introduced by Paul VI in 1969, four years after the end of the Council. So it is wrong to associate the Council, and the Pope promoting it (John XXIII who was liturgically speaking a traditionalist) with the liturgical abominations of Novus Ordo. I read somewhere that he later repented of what he had done, but it was now too late.

In Christ,   Alex

I believe all that's reported were words on his deathbed to the effect of "Stop the council" as he could see it was spiralling out of control and definitely out of what he thought the fruits of it would be.  I think he underestimated the persuasive powers of the dissenters in the college.
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« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2009, 03:09:49 AM »

Yes, that's exactly what I meant.
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« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2009, 12:14:38 PM »

The actual liturigcal reforms that the Council desired, to correct what I've seen dubbed as "Low Mass syndrome", were a good thing. However, in my view, authentic liturigcal reform was hijacked by modernists, who were bent on synchronizing the Latin rite with Protestantism, in a spirit of misplaced ecumenism. You won't find texts of the council authorizing communion in the hand, mass facing people, removal of altar rails etc...  I really don't know if any of this can be undone.

Actually, in preparing the novus ordo, Pope Paul VI invited six Protestant Lutheran "theologians" from the University of Tuebingen to assist in its creation.  They did this, stating the reason, that prayers should never divide the Protestant and Catholic communities, that they should all be uniform.  Obviously they weren't thinking in terms of lex orandi, lex credendi.
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« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2009, 11:43:26 PM »

Something radical transpired after Vatican II, particularly in the Europe and North America. A systematic reformation was enacted from the top down. Altars were desecrated, Churches were renovated overnight under the cover of darkness. I can't imagine experiencing that firsthand. I only hope that we don't see this kind of thing in Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2009, 04:44:38 AM »

I think it'd be hard, nevertheless I pray for that not to happen. Fortunately, the absence of a pyramidal hierarchy presupposes that no bishop, even the EP, can't impose changes on the DL for all the Orthodox, and every single attempt would be stopped by the Church entire. I also pray for the Western Churches outiside of Orthodoxy that they might correct their Protestant errors and restitute to their congregations the original beauty of their liturgies.

In Christ,  Alex
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« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2009, 09:01:48 AM »

Anglicans protestantized the venerable rites of the West, and long before Cranmer, Henry VIII began steps to deplete and liquidate the monastic orders. "Cranmer's New Order of the Mass", written by the late Michael Davies, is a reminder that many of the concepts imported into the Latin Rite in the 20th century were begun by Cranmer. Sacrificial language was vaccuumed out of the liturgy, statues and high altars were thrown out of the churches into the ditches etc... I've come across the Orthodox criticism that Catholicism is "Protestantism with a sacramental garb," but the Anglicans were ahead of them by several centuries. In the defence of the Anglicans, in my years as a child (briefly) in Anglicanism, I've seen more reverence for their communion wafers than the assembly-line mode of reception in today's Catholic churches. I suppose someone reading this article will assume I'm one of these old pre-Vatican II "Latin Mass" only advocates - not quite - but much of their critiques hit home.
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« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2009, 09:04:55 AM »

I think it'd be hard, nevertheless I pray for that not to happen. Fortunately, the absence of a pyramidal hierarchy presupposes that no bishop, even the EP, can't impose changes on the DL for all the Orthodox, and every single attempt would be stopped by the Church entire. I also pray for the Western Churches outside of Orthodoxy that they might correct their Protestant errors and restitute to their congregations the original beauty of their liturgies.

In Christ, Alex

Well put.

V2 was exactly the wrong thing at the wrong time. A mistake.

It didn't define any doctrine so Roman Catholics ought to put it away.

Even though what it actually said often wasn't a problem (religious liberty without indifferentism/relativism, ecumenism: having official talks with other churches and religions with that same caveat, and translating services).

There's the party line of the educated that V2 made Rome more like the East (token deacons, tacked-on epiklesis, telling Eastern Catholics, again, not to self-latinise which got blown off again) and then there's the common-sense view of the unbiased observer that it was an obvious move away from the East (from services that are like the Orthodox to services that are like the Protestants).

Greek Catholic is essentially superior V2 RC which isn't Rome's fault but because most Greek Catholics want it that way.

The game the liberals played when writing the conciliar documents was to have rhetoric praising something traditional (Latin, chant, organ music, etc.) then a few passages down undermine it by making it optional, which in practice around the world really meant suppressing it.

I don't think the six Protestant ministers were all Lutherans from Tübingen. One was Anglican from England for example.

The changes weren't directly an imitation of Protestantism (after all many Lutherans and Anglicans even today have better liturgical sense than mainstream RCs) but rather, bigger trends in the culture at the time: the then-hip abstract, spartan, stripped-down look of modern art etc. (a 1950s office building for example).

And... to understand English-speaking (Irish) RC culture then and now read Thomas Day's books Why Catholics Can't Sing (he's a musicologist) and Where Have You Gone, Michelangelo? In short the persecuted Irish 200 years ago couldn't have nice art and music in church and came to look down on such things as part of the culture of the hated English. They brought this church culture of Low Mass with devotions with them to America, where they ran the RC Church because they were English-speaking whites. The legitimate liturgical movement from continental Europe (good High Masses every week where possible) was supposed to correct that, and the intellgentsia among RCs thought V2 was going to do that, but it really ended up destroying that movement and continuing the problem Day describes perfectly. The guitar Mass is just the old Irish-American pattern in 1970s-ish garb, which they like even better because they don't have to fuss with the rituals of the old Mass. Add Modernism to that stew and now you get mainstream RC.

A better alternative history: if at a more opportune time (when there was less corrosion in the larger culture and the mainline Protestants were more orthodox), say, around 1900, a Pope had issued the same decrees on religious liberty and ecumenism and the existing services were at least partly translated, much like what 1950s American Anglo-Catholic Episcopalians were doing and what Western Rite Orthodox do today: the Anglo-Catholics' English Missal for example. That includes Low Masses (not ideal but the reason they dominated is the people wanted them) with good, classic Protestant hymns (talk about the right kind of ecumenism and inculturation).

Of course none of that solves the IMO one irreconcilable difference between Rome and the Orthodox (the scope of the Pope: Is the Pope a divinely instituted office channelling the church's infallibility and with universal jurisdiction or a man-made rank of the infallible church's episcopate for the good order of the church? Central command or a loose communion of bishops with a shared faith?) but no V2 would have left Rome with much more in common with the Orthodox.

Pope Benedict's doing a lot of good.

Cranmer was a theological nutcase but as a 16th-century Christian he shared a Godward worldview with the Catholic Church and he had a talent for prose. Anglo-Catholics starting about 100 years ago often translated the Roman service books in his style; their work is Rome's for the asking (Western Rite Orthodox use it). Day explained why the English-speaking RCs didn't adopt it.
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« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2009, 02:23:52 PM »

Quote
Of course none of that solves the IMO one irreconcilable difference between Rome and the Orthodox (the scope of the Pope: Is the Pope a divinely instituted office channelling the church's infallibility and with universal jurisdiction or a man-made rank of the infallible church's episcopate for the good order of the church? Central command or a loose communion of bishops with a shared faith?) but no V2 would have left Rome with much more in common with the Orthodox.

Pope Benedict's doing a lot of good.

In fact my friend (a traditionalist RC embracing lefebvrian positions, except for the antisemitic attitudes of that movement) and I can understand very well and agree on many points. Afterall, sedevacantists, while still believing in Papal infallibility, are conscious that a Pope can be heretic, and thus not a true pope (as they say of all post-V2 popes). OTOH we both love each other's liturgies (the Vetus Ordo was really amazing), which proves that a reunion would've been easier when we shared at least liturgy in common.
Pope Benedict, who on other aspects clearly isn't my favorite pope, is still working in the right direction to reverse the abuses of Vatican 2, and I really appreciate this.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2009, 03:22:01 PM »

That brings up a good point, Alex: more than one traditionalist RC has explained to me that it's the conservatives described above who are the ultramontanists (for example when Pope John Paul II gave in on altar girls they went along with it); trads are more like the East in that immemorial custom in the practice of religion is more important to them than to the conservatives. They believe all RC defined doctrines (and papal infallibility covers a lot less ground than most non-RCs think) but as a friend said to me, 'we are papal minimalists'. It's not the Pope's personal cult.

Trads are often accused of an idealised nostalgia (for the 1950s for example, a period I do like); the sin of conservatives on the other hand seems to be that, although they're sound RCs on paper, they're really only conserving what the Pope's opinions happen to be this week, unless it's about the war in Iraq, in which case they 180 and it's adiós, Pope; hello, Republicans. That and pro-life activism (I want to save the babies too but this just isn't working) is, in my opinion, for them a substitute for the religious culture they've lost: the rallies and marches are one of the few badges of RC identity. Don't worry, mods; I'm not trying to start a discussion of American politics; just saying what many conservative Novus Ordo RCs are like.

I've heard anti-Semitic talk among trad laity but never heard it literally preached from a trad pulpit.

BTW the old liturgical movement, the one that V2 was supposed to approve but in effect squashed, liked Orthodox practice.
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« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2009, 03:42:40 PM »

Yeah, that's right. It seems that RCs are too concerned with charity missions and pro-life activism then with religious education for the faithful and a correct divine worship. This saddens me much.
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« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2009, 10:57:32 PM »

Yeah, that's right. It seems that RCs are too concerned with charity missions and pro-life activism then with religious education for the faithful and a correct divine worship. This saddens me much.


I will have to agree with the part about the RCC and it religious education and worship. 
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« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2009, 11:06:55 PM »

It seems that RCs are too concerned with charity missions and pro-life activism then with religious education for the faithful and a correct divine worship.

While I don't think that Orthodoxy in America has jumped on the "social gospel" bandwagon just yet, as far as catechizing goes I have yet to hear an Orthodox priest encourage a single person to read the Bible on a regular basis, or for anyone to bring one with them to the liturgy.  Our parish offers a "Bible Study", but really no one goes.
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« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2009, 07:50:34 AM »

It seems that RCs are too concerned with charity missions and pro-life activism then with religious education for the faithful and a correct divine worship.

While I don't think that Orthodoxy in America has jumped on the "social gospel" bandwagon just yet, as far as catechizing goes I have yet to hear an Orthodox priest encourage a single person to read the Bible on a regular basis, or for anyone to bring one with them to the liturgy.  Our parish offers a "Bible Study", but really no one goes.
Well, by itself reading the Bible is good. The problem, which the Church Fathers also understood, is what Scripture we can read alone, and what we can't. Personally, I'd suggest reading only the NT, which eliminates all the pendant Old Testament Mosaic Laws. Some passages in the OT (especially those concerned with the Holiness Code) can easily be misunderstood without a guide, enhancing a legalism on matters of ethics which is damaging for our Christian life.
The Gospel, on the contrary, invites us to experience charity in our own lives, which is a part of our way to holiness. Having a priest inviting (often imposing) us to be charitable through parish missions seems to give charity a sort of "karma" meaning. "Do the good otherwise you'll pay the consequences". That's not the Gospel logic. True charity, springing directly from our hearts, should be a spontaneous fruit of our faith.
I'm glad that Orthodoxy hasn't become a charity mission society yet. And a beautiful Divine Liturgy can inspire more charitable feelings then any priest forcing us to help others.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #19 on: October 12, 2009, 08:43:05 AM »

The Orthodox in America are a much smaller and poorer church so they have no big charitable projects (schools, hospitals) to put them on people's radar like the RCs (unlike in Russia for example). That and you can argue that the errors of the social gospel are foreign to Orthodoxy anyway.

Alex, I hear you although one must avoid the heresy of Marcionism (Old Testament God bad, New Testament God good), but what about the psalms? The church east and west has never said that the office/hours are only for priests, monks and nuns and historically hasn't wimped out of including the problematic imprecatory psalms (with things like smashing the heads of your enemies' children on rocks). IIRC the modern RC Liturgy of the Hours does omit them; it's an exception which considering what we're talking about (V2 and a rupture of continuity) isn't surprising.

BTW the ordinary faithful praying the office including in church was a goal of the old liturgical movement. Until the early 1900s Sunday-night Vespers (including Psalm 109/110:6: He shall judge among the heathen; he shall fill the places with the dead bodies: and smite in sunder the heads over divers countries) was normal in RC churches and even required in some places, much like the Saturday Vespers or Vigil in Orthodox churches, but modern entertainment like the radio caused that to lapse starting around the 1920s. A very old (mediæval) adaptation/simplification of the office that used to be somewhat popular among the laity is the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
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« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2009, 09:59:31 AM »

I never said that reading the OT is wrong, as it is as inspired as the NT. I'm just stating that it is more dangerous to read the OT without a good knowledge of the NT and the Church Fathers- or at least without the aid of the spiritual father. While the Gospel contains more notions on the "love gospel" (and not "social gospel"... I think words here are important), they are easier to be understood (generally a few footnotes in the Bible can help us to have a sufficient understanding), the OT is less plane, full of rhetoric and ancient imagery; also, many of the prescriptions of the Pentateuch are figures of the NT, so an unprepared soul will read those liturgical and purity prescriptions as if God seemed to be evil or vindicative; without the NT, the OT is void of meaning in our lives, and doesn't remember us that God is love, and whatever he does for us, it's for our good.
I know that this opinion was also shared by the Fathers who, while granting the OT an important role as inspired Scripture, were perfectly aware of these risks. As a result, the OT is generally not quoted in the Divine Liturgy, which is the most preeminent rite of Orthodoxy. The same was generally applied to the Apocalypse, which is in fact excluded from readings because its understanding is too difficult to an unprepared faithful.
On the Psalms, you are perfectly right, also because their first of all spiritual hymns. I would apply your definition to all the writings with a similar nature, the so-called Wisdom Literature, as they offer direct hints for Christians on how to conduct our lives in piety, and offer examples of religious life taken from OT figures which on the contrary, when they appear in the Historical Literature, are more difficult to understand in a Christian perspective. The ideal would be: take an OT figure, read of it in the NT, then in the Church Fathers, and then eventually in the Wisdom Literature: at this point, clarify your doubts with your spiritual father and finally read the original passages where the characters appear, so that you can absorb everything this character can give you from a spiritual and theological perspective. This is my method, and up to now it works well.

Hope I've been clear now.

In Christ,  Alex
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« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2009, 11:03:37 AM »

I attended Latin Mass the seekend with my sister followed by exposition and benediction. Let me tell you, this traditional Catholic was in heaven.  My sister went with me as well and was very pleased with the mass. She did make a funny comment about the people at the mass though: "Its like Vatican II never happend for these people."  Cheesy
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« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2009, 11:08:44 AM »

"It's like Vatican II never happened for these people."  Cheesy


I live in a Novus-free world.
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« Reply #23 on: October 12, 2009, 11:10:19 AM »

"It's like Vatican II never happened for these people."  Cheesy


I live in a Novus-free world.
I'm moving in that direction. My sister and I will probably attened the TLM alot more often. However, have you ever seen the NO celebrated properly?
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« Reply #24 on: October 12, 2009, 11:31:43 AM »

Twice, both since Benedict became Pope and both at a local conservative parish (with a nice 19th-century building) that started an early-Sunday Tridentine Mass right after his motu came out lifting all the restrictions on it. Their Sunday High Mass (and on Christmas Day when I go) is eastward Novus (the priest faces the altar like an Orthodox priest) with kneeling at the rail for Communion.
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« Reply #25 on: October 12, 2009, 11:59:35 AM »

Twice, both since Benedict became Pope and both at a local conservative parish (with a nice 19th-century building) that started an early-Sunday Tridentine Mass right after his motu came out lifting all the restrictions on it. Their Sunday High Mass (and on Christmas Day when I go) is eastward Novus (the priest faces the altar like an Orthodox priest) with kneeling at the rail for Communion.
At my parish we have a married priest (has kids too) who is a former anglican priest. He celebrates the mass this way as well. Great guy. Question: Do you have a problem with the NO when it is celebrated properly?
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« Reply #26 on: October 12, 2009, 12:19:51 PM »

I'm not surprised that a priest formed by Anglo-Catholicism or even middle-of-the-road Anglicanism would celebrate it nicely (as I wrote above, many Anglicans have better liturgical sense than many mainstream RCs). I'd say the NO is unfortunate (unnatural, stripped-down and dull) but in Latin or really translated (as the translation, not a paraphrase which is used now, ordered by Pope Benedict will do*) with all the abuses removed and with much of the old ceremonial restored (which was always possible) there's no real problem with it.

In 1965 most people thought the slight changes in the instructions for the existing missal (partly vernacular with simplified ceremonial but still the Tridentine Mass and in many places eastward) were the extent of the changes. Pope Benedict's Catholic revival seems to be a move in that direction.

*A sticking point with trads is the bald lie of rendering qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur as 'it will be shed for you and for all'. I think Pope Benedict is fixing that. No more problem!
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« Reply #27 on: October 12, 2009, 12:45:56 PM »

Having been raised a Roman Catholic, I must say I never saw Novus Ordo applied correctly, except for two cases or three in all my life. and in any case, a great damage has been made by the really bad Italian version. CEI (=Conferenza Episcopale Italiana) is one of those Conferences which have approved of the phrasing "which is shed for you AND FOR ALL" in the Canon of the Mass, and which blatantly translated many parts. It must be said I have nothing contrary to the version "sparso per noi e per tutti" from a theological perspective (since Christ offered himself for all humans, none excluded) but only from an historical perspective (that's not what Jesus said!). There would have been better translations for the Latin form "per multis" (such as "per le moltitudini"=for the multitudes) which would have stayed near to the Latin original and vague in its meaning, like in the Greek and possibly in the Aramaic words adopted by Jesus.
The only change I appreciated was the inclusion of the Canon of st. Hippolitus from the Traditio Apostolica, in an expanded form, but the position of the epiclesis doesn't work very well. Also, many wonderful devotions typical of the Latin church have went lost (including the Confiteor of the priest anticipated to the Confiteor of the faithful). My RC traditionalist friend made me love this lost rite of the Catholic Church more or less like the Byzantine Rite (afterall, the Tridentine Mass, Filioque apart, is almost unchanged since the times of pope Gregory!)

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #28 on: October 12, 2009, 12:50:58 PM »

I'm not surprised that a priest formed by Anglo-Catholicism or even middle-of-the-road Anglicanism would celebrate it nicely (as I wrote above, many Anglicans have better liturgical sense than many mainstream RCs). I'd say the NO is unfortunate (unnatural, stripped-down and dull) but in Latin or really translated (as the translation, not a paraphrase which is used now, ordered by Pope Benedict will do*) with all the abuses removed and with much of the old ceremonial restored (which was always possible) there's no real problem with it.

In 1965 most people thought the slight changes in the instructions for the existing missal (partly vernacular with simplified ceremonial but still the Tridentine Mass and in many places eastward) were the extent of the changes. Pope Benedict's Catholic revival seems to be a move in that direction.

*A sticking point with trads is the bald lie of rendering qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur as 'it will be shed for you and for all'. I think Pope Benedict is fixing that. No more problem!
All good points. I actually would prefer the Trindentine mass over the NO but with venacular. And I agree that what has happened with the mass over the past 40-50 years is quite tragic. I certainly pray that Pope Benedict will restore the mass to its former glory.
On a side note, a friend of mine invited me to an Episcopalian mass last night. The interesting thing about it was that it was almost indistinguishable from a Catholic mass that one might find at some of the more liberal parishes in town.
However, I know that high church Anglicans do a much better job with the mass than their Episcopalian counterparts.
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« Reply #29 on: October 13, 2009, 12:33:01 AM »

Twice, both since Benedict became Pope and both at a local conservative parish (with a nice 19th-century building) that started an early-Sunday Tridentine Mass right after his motu came out lifting all the restrictions on it. Their Sunday High Mass (and on Christmas Day when I go) is eastward Novus (the priest faces the altar like an Orthodox priest) with kneeling at the rail for Communion.

Next time you are in New York, check out the great Fr. George Rutler's parish, the Church of Our Saviour. It's on Park Ave near Grand Central Terminal. He does both forms of the rite with the panache of the Anglican convert he is.

http://www.oursaviournyc.org/

I was there this weekend (and remain in NY till tomorrow). St. Patrick's Cathedral also celebrates the (new) Mass with much solemnity. My last visit, I was amazed at how much taste and reverence (and Latin) have found their way into the Cathedral liturgies.
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« Reply #30 on: October 13, 2009, 12:42:11 AM »

While I don't think that Orthodoxy in America has jumped on the "social gospel" bandwagon just yet, as far as catechizing goes I have yet to hear an Orthodox priest encourage a single person to read the Bible on a regular basis, or for anyone to bring one with them to the liturgy.  Our parish offers a "Bible Study", but really no one goes.

I've heard plenty of Orthodox priests encourage the faithful to read the Bible daily. As far as bringing it to Liturgy, this seems highly unnecassarey. Furthermore, there is more scripture said in any given Liturgy then any Protestant service.

While it is true that many Orthodox don't sit down and read the Bible daily, I can assure you they are educated in scripture. Why? Because all of our services are drawn from scripture!
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« Reply #31 on: October 13, 2009, 12:51:46 AM »

All good points. I actually would prefer the Trindentine mass over the NO but with venacular.

After talking with a couple of 86-year-old great aunts of mine, I wish this had been done. All they wanted was to be able to understand the Mass better---more English. They loved EVERYTHING else about the Mass and didn't want other changes. I have a little card insert approved by one of the US Bishops in 1965 with English texts for the simplified Tridentine rite, and I was struck by how solid and traditional the translations were. Anglicans and Lutherans would have recognized the texts easily. Now THAT would have been good ecumenism.
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« Reply #32 on: October 13, 2009, 01:21:37 AM »

All good points. I actually would prefer the Trindentine mass over the NO but with venacular.

After talking with a couple of 86-year-old great aunts of mine, I wish this had been done. All they wanted was to be able to understand the Mass better---more English. They loved EVERYTHING else about the Mass and didn't want other changes. I have a little card insert approved by one of the US Bishops in 1965 with English texts for the simplified Tridentine rite, and I was struck by how solid and traditional the translations were. Anglicans and Lutherans would have recognized the texts easily. Now THAT would have been good ecumenism.

This is what never made sense to me. Why re-invent the wheel? Just translate an already beautiful Mass into the vernacular. They lost SO much with the NO.
RE: St. Patrick's Cathedral (in your prior post.) I pray for reunification just so I would be able to participate in Mass at that Cathedral. Every time I go into that Cathedral I just stand in awe of its beauty!

(Being a Jersey girl, I go into the City several times a year.)

The Basilica of Saine Anne de Beaupre Shrine in Quebec is another beautiful Cathedral I would love to worship in.



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« Reply #33 on: October 13, 2009, 01:24:48 AM »

As the Tridentine Rite is being restored, I am going to assume that the music for the rite is Gregorian plainsong.

As someone who is educated in Latin and in Greek, it is very hard for me to endorse the venacular for the Liturgy especially if you plan on using Gregorian plainsong.  Gregorian plainsong is something I have studied extensively and even though most people and parishes execute it wrongly (though it may sound good), this one point remains: the music does not fit with the metrics of the English language.  It's the same with Byzantine chant and English: the two simply don't go together.  Now, I realize that to do the entire service in Greek or, if western rite, in Latin would result in me having to do them by myself since people are no longer generally educated in the classical languages.  

This leaves three options:
1)  Use Gregorian plainsong with English text (unacceptable to me)
2)  Use Gregorian plainsong and even polyphony with Latin text for the whole mass (most preferable)
3)  Develop a new system (4 part choral settings) with English text throughout (wasting a lot of good musical heritage there)

In EO churches of the Eastern Rite, more and more churches are using 4 part Russian style settings for the Liturgy which, of course, solves that issue.  I don't favor it. I prefer Byzantine myself.  But as one of only a handful of people who has any experience with Greek, ancient and modern, I have to use English langauge settings of Byzantine chant and it just doesn't work that well.

This is not just an issue of style or preference.  You cannot simply divorce the music from the language.  It has to be addressed and hopefully it will be addressed in both the RC and the EO in a way that not only preserves teh musical heritage of old and reduces modern innovations but preserves the prayerful atmosphere it helps to create.
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« Reply #34 on: October 13, 2009, 01:34:40 AM »

I agree that chant is best in Latin, but in ordinary parish settings, I think English chant can be done reasonably well (see the Parish Book of Chant). Of course, Vatican II called for Latin to be RETAINED, so we are not talking about totally vernacular Masses here.
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« Reply #35 on: October 13, 2009, 08:15:31 AM »

lubeltri, I've seen online photos of Fr Rutler's church and met him twice.

Here and there over the past 40 years there have been wonderful holdouts. For example in London 20 years ago and today is the Brompton Oratory (which I've been to twice but not for a whole service) - essentially a community of priests who are like Fr Rutler - and St Paul, MN has St Agnes Church which under the late Mgr Richard Schuler kept the old German custom backed by the old liturgical movement of good choral music in church (Day contrasts the German and Polish approach to the Irish) and much of the old ceremonial.

Re: your 86-year-old great-aunts, the translation on the card insert and the right kind of ecumenism, and Handmaiden on not reinventing the wheel and on beautiful churches (I've been to the shrine of St Anne), exactly.
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« Reply #36 on: October 13, 2009, 10:25:39 AM »

I have been to the Brompton Oratory. The best example of the "hermeneutic of continuity" I know.
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« Reply #37 on: October 13, 2009, 10:28:47 AM »

All good points. I actually would prefer the Trindentine mass over the NO but with venacular.

After talking with a couple of 86-year-old great aunts of mine, I wish this had been done. All they wanted was to be able to understand the Mass better---more English. They loved EVERYTHING else about the Mass and didn't want other changes. I have a little card insert approved by one of the US Bishops in 1965 with English texts for the simplified Tridentine rite, and I was struck by how solid and traditional the translations were. Anglicans and Lutherans would have recognized the texts easily. Now THAT would have been good ecumenism.
And that would have helped us avoid a great deal of the upheaval experienced by the faithful after the Council.
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« Reply #38 on: October 13, 2009, 10:31:00 AM »



This is what never made sense to me. Why re-invent the wheel? Just translate an already beautiful Mass into the vernacular. They lost SO much with the NO.
Well, I actually don't think the NO is entirely bad. It just has to be translated and celebrated properly. A good revised translation of the mass will be put into use next year, (thanks be to God) and Churches around the world are moving towards restoring a more traditional practice of the Liturgy.
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« Reply #39 on: October 13, 2009, 10:33:25 AM »

I agree that chant is best in Latin, but in ordinary parish settings, I think English chant can be done reasonably well (see the Parish Book of Chant). Of course, Vatican II called for Latin to be RETAINED, so we are not talking about totally vernacular Masses here.
Exactly. I think what we are looking for here is a NO mass celebrated properly in the venacular with many of the parts of the mass that are well known, done in English. This could include the confiteor, the Sanctus, the Agnus Dei, and perhaps the words of the consecration.
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« Reply #40 on: October 13, 2009, 10:36:08 AM »




The Basilica of Saine Anne de Beaupre Shrine in Quebec is another beautiful Cathedral I would love to worship in.





These pictures almost bring me to tears when I am reminded how much of our sacred architecture has been lost. I love being a Latin Catholic and the pictures are examples of what should be my inheritence. I keep praying that the New Liturgical Movement is successful in restoring the Liturgy, Art, Architecture, and Sacred music of the Western Church.
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« Reply #41 on: October 13, 2009, 11:03:32 AM »

These pictures almost bring me to tears when I am reminded how much of our sacred architecture has been lost. I love being a Latin Catholic and the pictures are examples of what should be my inheritence. I keep praying that the New Liturgical Movement is successful in restoring the Liturgy, Art, Architecture, and Sacred music of the Western Church.

To be fair, I think a lot of the "ugly architecture" that exists in the US has nothing to do with Vatican II, but the ADD attention span of Americans.

American churches in general (regardless of affiliation) have suffered from a case of the "uglies" in the past 60 years or so.

In Europe, Cathedrals used to take upwards of 50 years to build. (There is a Cathedral in Spain that has taken over 150 years and STILL is not finished!) If you told an American parish today that they had to wait 50 years for their building, the Parish Council would toss you out on the Street!

I think another reason for "ugly" churches was that as churches were built post-WWII, people simply did not have the money to build huge edifices with detailed carvings and beautiful artwork. They had just survived the Great Depression and the second World War. There was no money for beauty! The idea was for the building to be functional; not beautiful.

With the exception of the Protestant mega-churches that look more like a warehouse than a house of worship, I think we are starting to see a change in church architecture with a focus on aesthetics.

Over the past twenty years, more Americans have had the disposable income to go to Europe and see the great Cathedrals over there. It's sort of an eye opener like "Ohhh, THIS is what a church is supposed to look like!"

I have noticed in Orthodoxy, newer buildings have a stronger resemblence to the ones in Europe than they do over here.

Just my two cents...




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« Reply #42 on: October 13, 2009, 11:10:43 AM »

These pictures almost bring me to tears when I am reminded how much of our sacred architecture has been lost. I love being a Latin Catholic and the pictures are examples of what should be my inheritence. I keep praying that the New Liturgical Movement is successful in restoring the Liturgy, Art, Architecture, and Sacred music of the Western Church.

To be fair, I think a lot of the "ugly architecture" that exists in the US has nothing to do with Vatican II, but the ADD attention span of Americans.

American churches in general (regardless of affiliation) have suffered from a case of the "uglies" in the past 60 years or so.

In Europe, Cathedrals used to take upwards of 50 years to build. (There is a Cathedral in Spain that has taken over 150 years and STILL is not finished!) If you told an American parish today that they had to wait 50 years for their building, the Parish Council would toss you out on the Street!

I think another reason for "ugly" churches was that as churches were built post-WWII, people simply did not have the money to build huge edifices with detailed carvings and beautiful artwork. They had just survived the Great Depression and the second World War. There was no money for beauty! The idea was for the building to be functional; not beautiful.

With the exception of the Protestant mega-churches that look more like a warehouse than a house of worship, I think we are starting to see a change in church architecture with a focus on aesthetics.

Over the past twenty years, more Americans have had the disposable income to go to Europe and see the great Cathedrals over there. It's sort of an eye opener like "Ohhh, THIS is what a church is supposed to look like!"

I have noticed in Orthodoxy, newer buildings have a stronger resemblence to the ones in Europe than they do over here.

Just my two cents...





All very true but I don't think that one necessarily needs to spend incredible amounts of money to build the local parish church. I'm not expecting Gothic Cathedrals for every parish. However, the should be designed according to proper Catholic theology. The poorest parish in my diocese manged to build a beautiful Church that was not ridiculous in cost but still resembles a Catholic Church.
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« Reply #43 on: October 13, 2009, 03:02:02 PM »

These pictures almost bring me to tears when I am reminded how much of our sacred architecture has been lost. I love being a Latin Catholic and the pictures are examples of what should be my inheritence. I keep praying that the New Liturgical Movement is successful in restoring the Liturgy, Art, Architecture, and Sacred music of the Western Church.

To be fair, I think a lot of the "ugly architecture" that exists in the US has nothing to do with Vatican II, but the ADD attention span of Americans.

American churches in general (regardless of affiliation) have suffered from a case of the "uglies" in the past 60 years or so.

In Europe, Cathedrals used to take upwards of 50 years to build. (There is a Cathedral in Spain that has taken over 150 years and STILL is not finished!) If you told an American parish today that they had to wait 50 years for their building, the Parish Council would toss you out on the Street!

I think another reason for "ugly" churches was that as churches were built post-WWII, people simply did not have the money to build huge edifices with detailed carvings and beautiful artwork. They had just survived the Great Depression and the second World War. There was no money for beauty! The idea was for the building to be functional; not beautiful.

With the exception of the Protestant mega-churches that look more like a warehouse than a house of worship, I think we are starting to see a change in church architecture with a focus on aesthetics.

Over the past twenty years, more Americans have had the disposable income to go to Europe and see the great Cathedrals over there. It's sort of an eye opener like "Ohhh, THIS is what a church is supposed to look like!"

I have noticed in Orthodoxy, newer buildings have a stronger resemblence to the ones in Europe than they do over here.

Just my two cents...





All very true but I don't think that one necessarily needs to spend incredible amounts of money to build the local parish church. I'm not expecting Gothic Cathedrals for every parish. However, the should be designed according to proper Catholic theology. The poorest parish in my diocese manged to build a beautiful Church that was not ridiculous in cost but still resembles a Catholic Church.

Your right Papist. I saw many horrible modern RC parishes in my city, but I know that it wasn't done for money. The same materials and techniques might have been used with no further cost to preserve the original form of Latin churches, the prototype of romanic basilicas, for example. A latin-crossed church isn't so difficult to build, yet there are architects who exchange the project of churches for that of theatres and destroy all symbologies. A case such as this is a newly built church in the Loreto Quarter, a part of my city of Bergamo, in Italy, where the cross-structure (a Greek cross, to be precise) is "absorbed" into an outer circular structure (like Rome's Pantheon, I mean) and has a terrible round window in the center of the dome with a "Big Brother"-like eye in it. This is NOT Christian architecture... this is a paganization of Christianity! The beauty of the Romanic and Gothic church now disappears when tens and tens of horrendous buildings we wouldn't dare to call "churches". The problem is that architects are given too much freedom in their designs and, of course, that they lack a profound theological instruction they'd need to built churches. Modern interpretations of V2 have of course facilitated the process, though.

In Christ,   Alex
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"Also in the Catholic Church itself we take great care that we hold that which has been believed everywhere, always, by all. For that is truly and properly Catholic" (St. Vincent of Lérins, "The Commonitory")
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« Reply #44 on: October 13, 2009, 03:30:50 PM »

These pictures almost bring me to tears when I am reminded how much of our sacred architecture has been lost. I love being a Latin Catholic and the pictures are examples of what should be my inheritence. I keep praying that the New Liturgical Movement is successful in restoring the Liturgy, Art, Architecture, and Sacred music of the Western Church.

To be fair, I think a lot of the "ugly architecture" that exists in the US has nothing to do with Vatican II, but the ADD attention span of Americans.

American churches in general (regardless of affiliation) have suffered from a case of the "uglies" in the past 60 years or so.

In Europe, Cathedrals used to take upwards of 50 years to build. (There is a Cathedral in Spain that has taken over 150 years and STILL is not finished!) If you told an American parish today that they had to wait 50 years for their building, the Parish Council would toss you out on the Street!

I think another reason for "ugly" churches was that as churches were built post-WWII, people simply did not have the money to build huge edifices with detailed carvings and beautiful artwork. They had just survived the Great Depression and the second World War. There was no money for beauty! The idea was for the building to be functional; not beautiful.

With the exception of the Protestant mega-churches that look more like a warehouse than a house of worship, I think we are starting to see a change in church architecture with a focus on aesthetics.

Over the past twenty years, more Americans have had the disposable income to go to Europe and see the great Cathedrals over there. It's sort of an eye opener like "Ohhh, THIS is what a church is supposed to look like!"

I have noticed in Orthodoxy, newer buildings have a stronger resemblence to the ones in Europe than they do over here.

Just my two cents...





All very true but I don't think that one necessarily needs to spend incredible amounts of money to build the local parish church. I'm not expecting Gothic Cathedrals for every parish. However, the should be designed according to proper Catholic theology. The poorest parish in my diocese manged to build a beautiful Church that was not ridiculous in cost but still resembles a Catholic Church.

Your right Papist. I saw many horrible modern RC parishes in my city, but I know that it wasn't done for money. The same materials and techniques might have been used with no further cost to preserve the original form of Latin churches, the prototype of romanic basilicas, for example. A latin-crossed church isn't so difficult to build, yet there are architects who exchange the project of churches for that of theatres and destroy all symbologies. A case such as this is a newly built church in the Loreto Quarter, a part of my city of Bergamo, in Italy, where the cross-structure (a Greek cross, to be precise) is "absorbed" into an outer circular structure (like Rome's Pantheon, I mean) and has a terrible round window in the center of the dome with a "Big Brother"-like eye in it. This is NOT Christian architecture... this is a paganization of Christianity! The beauty of the Romanic and Gothic church now disappears when tens and tens of horrendous buildings we wouldn't dare to call "churches". The problem is that architects are given too much freedom in their designs and, of course, that they lack a profound theological instruction they'd need to built churches. Modern interpretations of V2 have of course facilitated the process, though.

In Christ,   Alex
Just as an iconographer should be a person of great prayer, penance, and devotion to our Lord, so too should be the architects who design God's temples.
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You are right. I apologize for having sacked Constantinople. I really need to stop doing that.
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