As many pastors do, I have been writing a little note to be included in the Parish Bulletin. After much thought I have decided to start posting them here. So here is my first online edition:
The daily Mass readings for this past Thursday reminded me of the two documents that I have written about the past two weeks. In the Gospel that day Jesus said “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the Kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” This saying of Jesus reminded me of Pope Benedict, who without a doubt, is very wise in bringing from the two thousand year old storeroom of the Church both the new and the old. He has recognized that there is value and beauty in what is old as well as in what is new.
Sadly, there are many in the Church, who do not agree, especially in the area of the Sacred Liturgy. Many get nervous, anxious, or even angry when the Church continues to affirm the beauty of things that are considered by some to be “old” and “outdated.” Surely we should be understanding of their hesitation, for many of them had bad experiences of the Church in the past, but we should also be able to affirm that one who is wise sees value in both the old and new. We should be able to recognize that what was once holy must indeed still be holy. If Latin and Gregorian Chant was once holy, then it must still be holy. If the priest facing the same way as the people (which is often mistakenly referred to as “having his back to the people) was once holy, then it still must be holy. If the Mass that nourished countless saints throughout the ages was once holy, it must still be holy. So there is no need to fear! Wisdom is at work in Pope Benedict, for he is bringing from the storeroom of the Church both the old and new.
I hope, that over time, I will have the wisdom to know how to bring both the old and the new from the storeroom of the Church into our Parish. I also hope that all of us will have the wisdom to see the beauty and value of both the old and new, and welcome them both into our Liturgies.