Western Rite Critic

A Balance to Contagious Enthusiasm

A word or two from Bishop Alexander


Fr. Alexander Turner, SSB“It was the West, however, which would suffer more from these unhappy inclinations, with the emergence of a professional clerical society aloof from the faithful, and a dichotomy between the performer on the one hand and the observer on the other. Mass was said by the priest, heard by the attendants. This movement reached its denouement in the magnificent theatrical productions of the Baroque period, staged with consummate artistry, and overwhelming in their grandeur. From a corporate act of the Christian family, Mass became a religious extravaganza on the one hand, or a mysterious incantation on the other. Small wonder that the layman left the holy sacrifice to professionals and occupied himself instead with devotions—self-centered, sentimental reveries such as the Rosary, or pious irrelevancies assigned to give mystical symbolism to parts of the liturgy. This provided little spiritual nourishment, but it did encourage an appetite for religious sensationalism and novelty, to be fed by a stream of fashionable saints and devotional fads.” – Bp. (later Fr.) Alexander Turner, SSB (first Vicar of the Antiochian Western Rite Vicariate)

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February 26, 2008 - Posted by | Western Rite -- The Rosary, Western Rite Pieties, Western Rite Quotes | , , , ,

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