Gotta tell you, only super positive, thankful, enthusiastic responses not only to the homily, but to the Holy Mass offered ad orientem (toward the liturgical East, toward Christ our God. It’s all about Jesus. He’s the One. He’s the only One.
What think you? Was I too rough on the versus populum (towards the people) thing?
This isn’t being “reactionary”, “rigid”, “conservative”… whatever. No. This is about making all things new with Him who is ever ancient, ever new.
8 responses to “Homily: Ad orientem – Getting the priest out of the way of Jesus! Finally!”
Nah, you were not too tough on versus populum. Perfecto.
I did choke on my afternoon snack when you said “I’ve been in a million cathedrals all over the world, so don’t be thinking you know who I’m talking about! ” as you related that beautiful scene of the priest questioning the bishop about his high chair.
“High chair…” 😎
Glad you’re doing this, Father. Although, I prefer to attend a Tridentine Mass exclusively and drive 2 hours each way to do so, I’ve always thought that a return to Ad orientem would go a long way toward correcting the rampant abuses, excess, and disrespect, one tends to find in a typical NO Mass. I wish that the pastor of the parish where I live (NO only) would do this in the hopes that it could kill the coffee time social atmosphere that happens once Mass ends. It’s as if the parishioners forget that Christ is in the Tabernacle…
Dear Father George,
This was the best homily I’ve heard in many decades! Yes, you see, I am one of those older than you. I have beautiful memories of serving as an altar boy and kneeling on steps behind the priest as he prayed the mass in Latin and focused solely on our Lord. I remember saying the responses in Latin, and I even remember the choir loft in the rear of the church!
You see, to me, as you say, the focus was, and has to return to being of Jesus on that cross! If we are not solely and reverently focused on him, then nothing else matters! I remember when the mass changed from Latin to English, when altars were changed, when the priests began facing the people, and when the choirs began performing in the front of the church, near, or on altar. One distraction after another! The biggest being the latter.
The distractions were bad enough, but making it worse, the altar rails were removed, people were encouraged to receive communion standing instead of kneeling, and in their hand instead of on the tongue. NOT ONLY HAD THE DISTRACTIONS TAKEN THE FOCUS FROM JESUS, BUT NOW THE REVERENCE OF KNEELING BEFORE OUR LORD WAS BEING DISCOURAGED!
Sadly, most modern Catholic churches today are still the same.
God bless you, and any priest who is attempting to eliminate distractions and restore reverence by putting in altar rails!
As for me and my family, WE ARE WITH YOU !!
Not rough enough. God bless and keep you. We need more “rigid” Catholics who will stand up and tell the flock “What is right is right, and can never be wrong.” I am tired of the priest schmoozing the congregation. I am tired of the priest presenting his posterior to our mutual Redeemer (altenatively locking Jesus away in a broom closet). God bless you for your love, understanding and devotion to our Good and generous Lord. Tell the truth always be the pastor, and not the “mercenarious.”
That was a great Homily.
God Bless Father George