"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Mass Chat: Sacred Theater and something I noticed at Mass...

Palm Sunday and Holy Week.

It's a liturgists dream, don't you think?  Re-enactments, living stations, processions, liturgical dance...

Even in traditional liturgies there is a lot going on - the reading of the Passion is done by multiple readers.  Liturgy is strictly regulated - most especially in traditional settings.  It is sacred theater in a sense.

Update:  Yup.  It's theater all right - Puppet Alert.  I kind of get it though.  What?

Palm Sunday Puppet Mass at St. Joan of Arc, Minneapolis
I may be mistaken, but I think what happens in parishes like this
is that the pastor may not be all that involved in
how the liturgy committee plans the liturgy.
The priest is simply the celebrant/presider.


At Mass there was a very young couple in the front row.  They took part in the procession and sat right up front afterwards.  They were really 'cute' - attractive young lovers.  I thought they must be newly weds, because they were so affectionate - they couldn't keep their hands off of one another.  I like seeing people in love.  Although I closed my eyes because it was getting kind of hot and I began to speculate on their marital status and wondered if they maybe just got up after making love and decided to go to church because it's Palm Sunday.

I didn't pay any attention to them until I couldn't help but notice them once again at communion.  They seemed not to know what to do, but they got up, clumsily exited their pew; the young woman took her young man by the hand and led him to the back - of the church?  Back of the line?  I wasn't interested. However, as they passed by me, I did notice that they looked as if they could have been a little high.  I smiled, recalling the days ....

At the end of Mass they were back in place, hugging throughout the recessional hymn.  I wondered if they were students of Christopher West?  I recollected myself and made my thanksgiving, praying for them.

If it was just a fluke that they were at Mass, it may have been the moment Christ got their attention.  They came looking for something, he invited them to 'come see' and he invited them to stay with him; from that moment forward, their conversion may be more deeply effected and they will never  forget the experience.  They may follow Christ from now on, more closely, from the heart - not just in a procession.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, hmmmmm, well,ahem - I do remember (very, very vaguely you understand) hitting the Sunday 5am Mass at the Cathedral in St. Paul still wearing our cocktail dresses.


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