Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Another Little Lie from the Liturgical Revolutionaries

We were all told, without hesitation or doubt, that "the early Christians" did this, did that, did the other thing--and most certainly, the Mass was celebrated "versus populum," that is, the priest was facing the people. That's the way by which the spoonful of ....cod liver oil....was shoved down the throats of the laity.


These twits, the Bugnini-ites, just made it up, (as was the case with "ordained" female deacons in the early Church. It was made up from whole cloth...)

What in the early Church and during the Middle Ages determined the position of the altar was that it faced East. To quote St. Augustine: "When we rise to pray, we turn East, where heaven begins. And we do this not because God is there, as if He had moved away from the other directions on earth..., but rather to help us remember to turn our mind towards a higher order, that is, to God." This quotation shows that the Christians of those early days, after listening to the homily, would rise for the prayer which followed, and turn towards the East

...the liturgy was celebrated from behind the altar in order to face East when offering the Sacrifice. But this did not represent, as might be implied, a celebration versus populum, since the faithful were facing East in prayer as well. Thus, even in the basilicas just described, the celebration of the Eucharist did not entail the priest and the faithful facing one another. During Mass, the faithful, men separated from women, were assembled in the two side naves, with curtains normally hanging between the columns. The center nave was used for the solemn entrance procession of the celebrant and his assistants to the altar, and the choir was situated there as well. Even if we take the hypothetical case that the early Christians in the old Roman basilicas did not face the entrance—that is, the East—during the Offertory prayer—i.e., that they really faced the altar—this still would not have meant that the priest and the faithful faced one another, because during the Eucharistic Prayer the altar was hidden behind curtains. (...)

Here Gamber tells us why a statue of Martin Luther was placed in Rembert Weakland's Milwaukee Seminary:

The idea that the priest is to face the people during Mass has its origins with Martin Luther, in his little book, The German Mass and Order of Worship (1526).

Of course, that seminary has been forcefully divorced from the property-roster of the Milwaukee Archdiocese.


HT: Rorate Coeli


Anonymous said...

Where is the statue of Martin Luther? I've seen the St. Francis De Sales prominently at the end of the driveway. Or is it no longer there?

Dad29 said...

It was placed inside the Minor Seminary, which later became the Puzzle Palace--

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the clarification.

Anonymous said...

the Puzzle Palace?...

Dad29 said...

Andy, that's a term which generally refers to "corporate HQ;" in this case, it's the Cousins Center (or wherever the Chancery Office is located now.)