Ad orientem versus at the Viennese Cafeteria

From Fr Z’s blog WDTPRS (What Does the Prayer Really Say?)

In the spirit of the informal motto we have taken here, ***Save The Liturgy – Save The World ***- I tip my biretta to Gerald over at the Cafeteria (or in this case Viennese Caffe) for a something from Christoph Cardinal Schoenborn he translated. ***o{]***:¬) He got it from Here is what Card. Schoenborn has to say about Mass celebrated *versus populum *and ad orientem versus. My **emphasis **and comments. . . .

I tell my Theology students at a Roman Catholic college that the biggest mistake ever made in the American Church is when they turned the holy mass into a conversation between only the priest and the people. I’ve read papers, e.g., that said quite innocently “we worship the priest.”

Turn the priest around so he can be a true shepherd and not an MC.


what? you don’t like the Sunday morning priestly performance?

I totally agree with you, whatever happened to understanding the priest as the head of the congregation, i.e. acting as our mouth piece, ears and mind?

Uh huh - and I suppose no-one who saw a priest (or particuarly the Pope) being incensed at Mass, or knelt in front of and having their hand kissed, or was told that they were an alter Christus and that some of what they said was infallible, could have come to the same conclusion prior to Vatican 2??

I suppose. Some people can be very simple minded and superstitious. I frequently kiss the priests hands. They are the hands that bring me Christ.


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