On the Organic Restoration of the Sacred

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It's a pity that Father Christopher Smith's fine essay, Mutual Enrichment and the Reform of the Reform: A Game Plan, got so little coverage. Father Smith advances some excellent ideas.

The Vicar of Christ, Pope Benedict XVI, has called for the mutual enrichment of the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite and has also suggested that the time has come for a Reform of the Reform of the rites after the Second Vatican Council. He has also reiterated that there should be mutual respect of both forms and no "ritual mixing." And so many voices are out there calling for a reform of the modern Roman Rite, it's hard to know what such a reform should look like. There are some who are determined to make sure that the Extraordinary Form never has any influence on the Ordinary Form, and, if they had their way, they would obliterate its memory from the face of the earth in the most radical damnatio memoriae known to human history. For them there is no question of mutual enrichment; rather, they advance a platform of constant liturgical anarchy. Then there are those for whom mutual enrichment sounds like a plot to infect the venerable classical worship of the Church with the theological and spiritual rot that has affected the ephemeral postmodern worship (?) of the new community sung into being.
As a parish priest who habitually celebrates both forms, I am left scratching my head how the two forms are supposed to enrich each other organically if I can't mix the rites. Pope Benedict XVI has given us a rich teaching on the liturgy as Cardinal Ratzinger, and he has also given the Church quite an example of how to celebrate the liturgy. But I am sure I am not alone in desperately wishing for some more practical guidance as to how exactly this is supposed to done and what I can and cannot do to help bring about the organic restoration of the sacred.

For the full text, go here.

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About Dom Mark

Dom Mark Daniel Kirby is Conventual Prior of Silverstream Priory in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland. The ecclesial mandate of his Benedictine community is the adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation, and in intercession for the sanctification of priests.

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