torsdag 13 juni 2013

Post-modern worship

One of the reasons why I am so keen to see the wider use of the traditional forms of Catholic worship is that it draws in the atheists by addressing them at that level of cognition which cannot be answered by the intellect.

I wish our theologians were better informed on recent developments in neuroscience and cognitive psychology - they would then realise that the 1960s thinking that still seems to dominate in intellectual circles of the Catholic church has run its course. The architecture and liturgy that was leading-edge in the 1970s can have little appeal to the generation born in the 1990s. Why can we not learn from our Russian Orthodox brothers whose Church has sprung so vigorously back to life in the past decade, out of next to nothing, on the basis of traditional forms of worship? It is depressing to compare the start of this liturgy with that in my local parish. Mass begins with a fanfare blasted out by the organist, which would be exactly right to herald the entrance of the performing elephants at a circus.

It is the worship of Byzantium and Counter-Reformation Rome that can engage with the spirit of Post-Modernism. I suspect these Russians know exactly what they are doing.

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