IMPORTANCE OF THE LITURGY
It is an undeniable fact that the
Catholic Religion can only be learned through the Liturgy. The common
liturgical practices in the Catholic Church are the Sacrifice of the Mass
and the Divine Office. Everybody is aware of the Mass; the Divine
Office is the eight moments during the day wherewith those whose lives are
consecrated to God in the religious life recite the so-called "hours".
The Hours are moments of prayers that strengthen the Church. And,
because the usual eight times of prayer has been reduced to two or three
times of prayer which is insufficient to sustain the life of the Church,
this has resulted in the lack-luster in the Church in the Philippines.
It is no secret that many saints had
found strength, meaning and consolation in the sacrifice of the Mass.
Schumacher, a man dedicated to attempting to find solutions to the economic
problems of the world, found the answer in the Sacrifice of the Mass.
The entire teachings of the Catholic
Church are present in the Mass. It is a matter of understanding the Mass.
All these centuries the Mass has been such that a Catholic should be
developing a deeper knowledge of Catholic Doctrines simply by attending
Mass. In fact, the Mass must be celebrated in its proper liturgical
perspective and the priest must understand what he is celebrating.
Unfortunately, we lack both today.
The lack of the two elements necessary
for the liturgy was caused, firstly, by the insufficient training of the
priest in spirituality. And, second, by the unrestricted
experimentations into the realm of the novel and entertaining in the
celebration of the Mass, turning the Mass into a show rather than an act of
The Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, is
reminding us that, because of the near total collapse of Catholic Liturgy,
this only effective means in teaching Catholic Truths through the
liturgy must be remedied. The Liturgy is the place where man develops
a right relationship with God. Because of its collapse, man never had
a right relationship with God. And this right relationship must be
restored through a sound Liturgy.
This problem was raised in the Roman
Synod of Bishops but they simply brushed it aside. It seems the
Bishops were not equipped with sufficient spirituality to appreciate the
problem and its solution. And, while the modernist in the Catholic
Church hi-jacked Vatican II and filled the Liturgy with useless and
meaningless addenda, the then Cardinal Ratzinger worked virtually alone to
analyze the problem and present solutions which came out in several volumes.
A more complete synthesis is found in the "The Spirit of the Liturgy."