Oh Lord, purify me, make me a chalice in which you dwell, offer your sacrifice in me and spread your love through me. Let me shine like gold, adorn me with the jewels of virtue that I may always be open to you. Fill me. Overflow me. Let me be like that most perfect vessel, the Singular Vessel of Devotion, She to whom I cry for protection against the Evil One. I ask this for your glory, for the vessel is nothing without the sustenance inside, the cup nothing unless it is filled. Oh Lord, purify me.

Give me a word, Abba

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Church is Universal

Today, the archies had a Mass said in Chiesa Nuova (less commonly called Santa Maria in Vallicella) at the Altar of St. Philip Neri who is buried there. I once again again led the Pigna Scholada in some 16th Century polyphony which was amazing because that type of music is intended to be sung in a huge church and not in the ground floor library of an Italian palazzo.

This polyphony was in 16th Century Spanish. Our Communion hymn was in English. The ordinary was chanted in Latin, the Kyrie was in Greek. We were in an Italian Church. Finally, after Mass, a group of French girls sang some French hymn in harmony. It was beautiful.

I am known for not being a huge fan of switching languages in Mass. Of course, I'm not against a vernacular hymn here and there (or an alternate vernacular hymn.) What irritates me is when the propers and other prayers of the Mass are in different languages so that it seems like one part of the Mass is directed toward one group of people and another part is directed toward another, which is kind of strange considering that Mass is supposedly directed toward God.

It is however supposed to indicate the universality of the Church. Perhaps it does. I do know that the fact that different languages were all used in the same chapel within half an hour of each other indicated to me that the Church was universal. While in the liturgy it's distracting to me, in devotions, it has the exact opposite since it is like watching a parade going past instead the King's Carriage. When the King's carriage is going past, you don't want the parade to be in the way. Before and after the Carriage, the parade only helps in pointing to the importance of the King.

This is what international expression of devotion does for me. It points to the King and his kingdom on earth which extends to all the nations.

No comments: