Monday, February 27, 2012

Somewhere, buried among the dust of decades,Virgil Michel's last work of liturgical theology, and, perhaps the last great work of the liturgical movement, sits unpublished.

One of the more troubling aspects of the "new liturgical movement" proposed by certain persons, including Papa Ratzinger, is the divorce between liturgy and social responsibility. The "new liturgical movement", if its current conservative darlings represent the concerns of the movement, is wrapped up in idealized abstractions, often divorced from concrete concerns. As a consequence, in the name of "liturgical theology," persons touting a "new liturgical movement" more often than not ignore the genuine doctrine of the original liturgical movement in its entirety. The liturgical movement never ignored the human person as such nor the social responsibility conferred upon him. The strains of conservative restoration popular among certain figures isolates the liturgical movement from its context, and as such ignores the concern many figures in the original liturgical movement had in establishing cohesive ecclesiastical community through liturgy as well as their criticism of the socio-economic models dominant in their and our own age. The original liturgical movement was so successful because it spoke to the fundamental nature and experience of man as opposed to obsessing upon the externals of liturgical ritualism. Somewhere in the hereafter, Chrysostom nodded in Michel's direction with approval.

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