Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Some Quotes from the New CDW Secretary

Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith was named Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship recently by Pope Benedict XVI...Here are some snips from his Commentary on the Instruction Redmptionis Sacramentum that he wrote last year.
At this point, I believe we need a preliminary evaluation of what, in a certain sense, has deviated the process of post-conciliar and especially liturgical reform.

The Council was a marvellous opportunity to prepare the Church for what awaited her in the contemporary world. Her spiritual renewal and overall reinvigoration could have become the impetus for a new epoch of evangelization. Modern developments offered immense opportunities; but things went differently.

One wonders why it is that the Church was unable to make the most of the fruits of the Council for a full reawakening of ecclesial faith. Indeed, people appeared who interpreted the Council Documents as a justification for counter-reformist attitudes, that is, the attitudes of those who took the reform to be a relaxation of regulations, which only weakened the Church and took her backwards. Pope Paul VI complained that certain people exploited one or other Council teaching to "impede evangelization" (Evangelii Nuntiandi, n. 80).

I think that the general problem was an erroneous idea of the purpose of the Council. Indeed, speaking of the conciliar reforms, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger says: "The [Council] Fathers wanted to update the faith, indeed, to present it with its full impact. Instead, people gradually formed the idea that the reform consisted merely of throwing out the ballast, in other words, of divesting it so that in the end the reform did not appear to radicalize the faith but to dilute it" (Il Sale della Terra, p. 86).

This erroneous attitude gave rise to theological schools which, by down-playing the importance of Tradition and the ecclesial Magisterium in theological direction and research, have advanced confusing opinions,

The same situation has more or less plagued sacramental and especially Eucharistic theology. New approaches of certain other theological disciplines, such as those concerning ecumenism and interreligious dialogue, have influenced events. These bewildering theological opinions on the nature of the sacrament have subsequently given rise to not a few problems.
It is therefore regrettable that one encounters in theological circles reductive interpretations of the greatness and deep significance of the sacrament.

Some people, forgetful of its essentially sacrificial aspect, reduce it to a fraternal banquet. Some confuse the separate role of the ministerial priesthood with the common role, reducing Holy Mass to community prayers over which the priest presides; some also no longer believe in the continual presence of the Lord, and behave inappropriately during and after Mass.

Such attitudes have contributed to weakening the Eucharistic faith of a great number of our faithful and to causing this serious crisis concerning the central place of the Eucharist.
More here.

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