24 August 2010

Mixed News ends

I always felt that there was something very bizarre about what is sometimes known as Kentish Town Liturgy, spread throughout England - and further - by the charismatic figure of Fr Graeme Rowlands of S Silas's: Baroquery, lace, birettas, as far as the eye can see; combined with those dreadful old, horribly unbaroque, ICEL texts. I suspect most 'Kentish Town' -style Churches will remain in the Church of England for a variety of reasons which I will probably delete from the thread if readers start amusing themselves too much with the topic. It will be interesting to see whether they stick with Old ICEL or go for 2010. The problem in many Anglican churches will be that Common Worship and Old ICEL could be fitted very well together, so seamlessly that congregations were bamboozled as to whether the service the Vicar was doing was Anglican or Roman. Now these poor dears will have to decide whether to stick with And also with you, or to stick their necks out with And with your Spirit. What they do will be interestingly indicative of their ecclesiology. Fun days lie ahead.

And the Bad News about 2010? Someone has done some nastinesses in 2010, rather reminiscent of the little corners of S Thomas's churchyard where the druggies have been. It is that bit less in accordance with the admirable prescriptions of Liturgiam authenticam than was 2008. Are we to presume that these are concessions to the Trautmanntendenz? I will pick ou just one: in the Memento, "vota sua" is translated as "homage". How this can be considered either an appropriate rendering of the Latin, or as in accordance with the rituals of modern culture? Homage is something that exists nowadays in the feudal customs which have survived in the English Coronation Service (and are probably eliminated even from that in the highly secret revision of it which has been produced for use with the Defender of All the Faiths). It is suggestive neither of the world of the fourth century sacramentaries nor of that of with-it Trautmannesque Americans who can't say "ineffaffable". Why on earth ...

I wonder exactly who was involved in the final tweaking of 2010 (except, of course, that it might not be final; an even more Binding and Definitive version may appear). But historians should be informed of the fool's name.

And finally: Christ has died ... has disappeared. Or I hope so. There couldn't be a risk of it surviving in some sort of Local Appendix, could there? Though mind you, I always use it at S Thomas's. My reason is a trifle eccentric: I profoundly dislike those 'Affirmations'; but to change them or vary them seems to me to draw attention to them. So I have stuck with what I inherited here, deeming it a formula that the congregation can say on autopilot and without thinking about it. Any ideas ...

13 comments:

Fr LR said...

"Christ has died ... has disappeared."

Alleluia! The time has come, Father. Just tell your folks: "You can't blame me for this one" and send those goofy affirmations into outer darkness. The Tridentine Mass has such through-composed dignity, no herky-jerky starts and stops (I'll bet the Kentish-ites like that herky-jerky stuff), that these silly Pete Seeger audience participation bits are incompatible with good mental health. I personally would suffer from "Pre Affirmation Performance Syndrome". I would experience vapor lock, magnified through repetition.

I fear that if such affirmations are a necessary element of the new Anglican Use liturgy many of us will become victims of "Anglicanorum Coetibus Interruptus Syndrome".

Christian said...

Well, I can see that many things about the last minute changes are annoying but, on the plus side one or two of the changes seem to be improvements. I am not saying they are better translations, but it is nice to see the sacrificial element made more explicit ("for whom we offer this sacrifice").

Pastor in Valle said...

re: Christ has died.
My principal (and indeed principle) objection is that it addresses our Lord as if he were not present. So I don't use it, even in the translation now on death row.

Albertus said...

I have since my ordination in 1977 always celebrated the Traditional Latin Mass, so the problem of the acclamations does not touch me directly. Equally as bad, it seems to me, are all the other Novus Ordo Post-consecratory acclamations, even the Latin originals. They all insist on denying the Lord's sacramental presence. ''Donec venias'' comes to mind (Until He comes). I have heard even laymen lament to me, that these acclamations deny the Real Presence, and they refuse to say the words. Lex orandi - lex credendi, is an axiom not applicable to the Novus Ordo.

AndrewWS said...

"... for a variety of reasons which I will probably delete from the thread if readers start amusing themselves too much with the topic"

Expressed with your characteristic pedagogical drollness and restraint, Father.

I am finding it really difficult not to ROFL, even though I'm in an office.

Roll on the Ordinariate!

Figulus said...

Albertus,

How does "Salvator mundi, salva nos, qui per crucem et resurrectionem liberasti nos" (IIRC)deny the real presences?

For that matter, "donec venias" is paraphrasing St Paul, who certainly cannot be construed as denying the real presence.

I am, of course, glad to be rid of "Christ has died". It is rude, and worse yet, misleading to speak of the Lord in the third person when he is the Mysterium Fidei who is present on the altar.

Fr William said...

Well, up to a point, Pastor in Valle and Figulus. The whole of the rest of the Eucharistic Prayer refers to our Lord in the third person, so "Christ has died …" is no exception in that regard. But that, of course, is because the EuPr is addressed to the Father. Which leads us to the real problem with "Christ has died …": to whom is it addressed? Are we to suppose that it too is addressed to the Father? That seems, on the face of it, unlikely – it hardly fits as part of the same address as the preceding and following texts. It can't be to our Lord, since it is in the 3rd person. Are the congregation addressing themselves, exhorting one another to faith (in which case, what on earth is it doing slap-bang in the middle of the EuPr? Does one perhaps see here the justification for the appalling dialogue-style EuPrs – V. This is his story. R. This is our song and the like – of Common Worship?) No explanation for the presence of this text seems to make sense, grammatically or otherwise.

But asking "to whom is this addressed?" makes one wonder about the other acclamations, too. Formally speaking, they are all addressed to Christ. Why are we suddenly breaking off from addressing the Father in order to address one sentence to the Son before immediately switching back to the Father - and without even so much as an apology ("can you hold the line, I'll be with you again in a moment")?

One suspects that the only rationale for the Eucharistic Acclamation is a terrible fear that the "audience" might lose interest if they aren't given something to do, or some reason to stay awake. Liturgical coherence, theology and logic seem to play little part.

Andrew said...

Salvator mundi is well worth including but the problem with the acclamation, I have always thought, is that, in ICEL 1970, the priest breaks off from addressing the Father to addressing the congregation again - 'let us proclaim'. When I was a creative liturgist - thinking then that a little improvisation was licit - I used to allocate that phrase to the deacon, one of whose jobs it might well have been. I ceased to do that when I became convinced that what one priest calls a permissible variant, another would call an abuse. The Latin, it seems to me, even in NO, is not necessarily an address to the congregation. It could be interpreted as doxological. The weakness - which CW tried to remedy by having four distinct invitations - is having one statement ('mysterium diei') answered by a variety. Who is to know which? The CW solution, alas, makes the problem of the priest suddenly addressing the congregation worse. The really difficult thing about these acclamations is that they are often sung to music which is incompatible with the rest of the music in the EP, or said - which if other responses are sung is just as bad. The most ingenious solution I have come across - suggested to me in a Catholic cathedral where I was conducting an orchestral mass thirty years ago, was to transfer a polyphonic or Mozart Benedictus to the acclamation position, in the spirit of the Tridentine Mass. Whether the priest continues with the Canon during the singing of such an 'Elevation' (which is what most of these pieces were written as) is a different point. Cardinal Ratzinger would have said yes. NO does not make this provision - and we perhaps shouldn't make it up as we go along because of what others do when they make it up as they go along....

+ Andrew

Andrew said...

Sorry for the typo - not 'mysterium diei' but 'mysterium fidei'. We nearly had the mystery of God there...

+ Andrew

rick allen said...

" ''Donec venias'' comes to mind (Until He comes)."

Doesn't that mean "until you come"?

(not ashamed to be corrected if I'm wrong)

Rubricarius said...

The 'Christ has died...' acclamation does not appear in the Latin edition and IMHO is inferior to the others.

Such acclamations are scattered fairly freely through older liturgies, e.g. picking up my copy of Hammond, he gives, in Latin, the Ethiopic Liturgy. After the Institution "Populus: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, et resurrectionem tuam sanctam credimus, ascensionem tuam et adventus tuum secundum; rogamus te, Domine Deus noster, hoc vere ita esse credimus.

Lots of similar examples in the book.

davidforster said...

How about this for an acclamation: "Benedictus qui venit in nomine Domini; hosanna in excelsis." It's often used at that point in sung Tridentine masses, and has a good pedigree ...

Steve said...

Ah, but to whom is "Benedictus qui venit" addressed?

And if it comes to that, the original "Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus, Dominus Deus Sabaoth" (Isaiah ch.6) was sung by cherubim who were crying.... one to another.

Given that, I don't have a problem (not that I ever did) with "Christ has died....", but to those of you who do, do you also have a problem with "Dying you destroyed our death...."?