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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Inculturation....From God or From Man?

This little ditty keeps popping it's head up every so often.  This time it was on facebook.  I won't bore you with all of the details, but you'll certainly get the jist of what the conversation was.  It centered around the idea that a poster is content with the fact that at least the Mass is valid, even if it be in another language, ie.  Spanish.  My point was that this is exactly what Vatican Council II DID NOT call for.  This is an abuse and while it is valid, there is much more to the issue than validity.

There is more to this than validity.  There is the matter of licitness.  What one particular person cares for or does not care for has no bearing on the issue at hand. [which is the liturgical action]  Right isn't just right, but wrong is always wrong. Doing the bare minimum is not enough.  We are called to do more.  That is akin to getting a D in school.  It passes, but there is so much more that can be accomplished and can be given to the task at hand.  Just getting by doesn't solve the problem.  It's time we start doing what Vatican Council II actually called for, if we are to accept it at all.  And to simply be valid isn't it.

Vatican Council II called for the faithful to know and understand Latin well enough that Catholics could make the responses.  As it stands right now, the vast majority of Catholics in the world cannot do that, yet they are expected to be inculturated into Spanish Masses and other languages (I am speaking of the USA).  Not only are they to be inculturated into these other languages, but they are expected to be able to respond, yet when it comes to knowing the language of the Church, Latin, the vast majority of Catholics cannot do this.  So, where is the disconnect?

The white elephant in the room for liberals is this:  Why should a Catholic submit to the particular, when the universal has not been met?  Why should a Catholic stand by and expect that a valid Mass in Spanish is enough?  Why should a Catholic stand by and just accept the inculturation of a particular (Spanish) when the universal (Latin) is ignored?

I daresay that there is not an answer to that.  I daresay that unless the liberal admits that there is a change in theology with regard to the Mass and the Sacraments, there is not an answer to that.  If Vatican Council II was simply pastoral and not doctrinal (as has been asserted by many who are higher up), then there was no change in liturgical theology and what was accurate before is accurate today.  But is it?

I don't think that it is.  I think that there has been a shift in liturgical theology and this shift is dangerous to the faithful.  Dangerous, because it is another reason for people to simply look at the Mass as just a part of a greater whole.  The Mass is not.  The Mass is not on the same level as praying a rosary.  The Mass is not on the same level as doing good works.  The Mass is not the simply part of the whole.


If a Catholic has no more life in the Church than to simply assist at Mass and make his Easter duty, then he is being a dutiful Catholic.  While he should strive for more and do what he can, he is doing what he ought.  That is not merely getting by, that is doing what he ought.  And that IS enough.  For doing what we ought is doing what is right.

If the Mass is how we worship, shouldn't we worship according what the Church asks and not what man wants?

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