Sunday, 11 September 2011

Well, quite!

In last week's Tablet there was an interesting letter:

Discomfiting faith of the young?
Among some good coverage of World Youth Day I was surprised to read in Robert Mickens' 'Letter from Madrid' (27 August) remarks that implied that pilgrims had 'provoked' protesters by praying the Rosary. We must act in Christian charity, but this does not require us to hide the truth. While there may have been 'provocation' on the part of pilgrims, there was revolting conduct on the part of some protesters, which was not reported at all in Robert's letter.
Is it true that for an older generation we are simply discomfited by the very real faith of the young and wish they would join us bickering over the new Missal?

Well, quite!

8 comments:

Priest's Housekeeper said...

Well said!

Mike Cliffson said...

Much could be said about this particular mob of "protesters".
But one thing is not alas limited to the Pope's visit: the "meme", as it were, the idea, the concept, the what is becoming "accepted civilized fact" that since Catholicism is "Homophobic" and environtmentophobic and generally "hateful", ANY public christianity is more than just provoking, its an objective manifestation of "hate".
This oneis gaining traction by the second in Spain, Undoubtedly in the higher echolons of the courts, EU, and other places where they are thinking things for us all, and if we are rreacting,Im a dutchman.

Anonymous said...

I have the misfortune of belonging to a congregation that, with the parish priest, waxes long and loud on the iniquity of the new translation of the Roman Missal. Most of them are septuagenarians and octogenarians. They quote, and circulate, five-page letters written by disaffected Jesuits supporting their prejudices.

I normally remain silent, knowing how hopeless it is to argue with the old, but I once ventured the opinion that far fewer worshippers are likely to leave than their predecessors who left in droves after the abandonment of Latin. Their fury knew no bounds, coming down to the point that 'We stayed'. The parish priest is delaying the use of the new translation until Advent and is offering no preparation.

Another historical fact they resent is that there was no preparation whatever for the reception of the original translation of the Missal in 1970 or so. One witch-like crone said, 'We did what we were told'. 'What's gone wrong?', I asked, and went home.

These wrecks of the first years after Vatican II will limp into the next life on crutches bearing only a handful of grudges created by broken dreams.

Et Expecto said...

To see some youthful exuberence in the expression of their faith, have a look at the pilgrims walking to Walsingham from Ely. There are some pictires on the LMS Chairman blog and Chushed Bones has a video.

Also look at the Chartres Pilgrimage.

Victory of Faith said...

It was actually when I first became a university student about fifteen years ago that I discovered that mature, supposedly educated authority figures in the Catholic Church were perfectly capable of taking the same attitude to the old Latin Mass as my intellectually bone-idle little brothers did. "We don't understand it. It's boring. It's stupid. Why isn't it in English?" And so on.

The problem here fundamentally is a lack of spiritual growth. The reason why people lapse as they grow up, and the reason why their faith stops being relevant to their lives, is simply that although they may have grown up physically their spiritual lives have not kept pace. Their faith, in other words, hasn't grown and developed in tandem. For example, a lot of adults still think of God the same way as they did when they were seven years old - as on old man who lives in the sky and can do magic. Since they can no longer bring themselves to believe in that sort of a God, they stop believing in Him altogether.

What, therefore, is one to make of a supposedly educated Catholic journalist who still has an utterly infantile attitude to the Holy Rosary? Or of septuagenarians who prefer baby-talk translations of the Mass to theological precision and intellectual rigour?

Clearly although spiritual growth is for everyone not everyone is for spiritual growth.

GOR said...

As a sort of a post scriptum to your series on Ireland Father, I note that Bishop Emeritus of Derry, Edward Daly, has declared that he finds the TLM “lifeless and somewhat meaningless”… I suspect that might also be the sentiment of other (older) clergy in Ireland – not to mention many of the faithful in my home parish.

I’m not sure what Bishop Daly makes of the World Youth Day atmosphere. As a former activist priest, I imagine he might find it welcome – if only it could be reflected in the liturgy. That people - especially young people - might be attracted to the TLM most likely appears incredible to him - or even provocative. “Actuosa participatio” and all that…

Andrew said...

My younger son made the long trek to Madrid for WYD with a fairly large contingent from various Sydney Catholic schools. He said that they were hardly aware of the protestors, and found the Spanish to be warm and generous hosts. Less appealing was some of the aggressive behavior of other pilgrims at the airfield, who felt they were entitled to a better position despite arriving later. He was also less than impressed at having to listen to Catechesis from Cardinal Pell - as he pointed out, they can hear Cardinal Pell's views (which tend to the dogmatic and bombastic) any time in Sydney, so it would have been nice to hear from one of the many other Bishops and Cardinals present from other countries.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating comments. You sound like U.S. Episcopalian chitter chatter