Chicago, Ill., Jun 24, 2010 / 16:58 pm
Christian witness is intended to prepare for and to live the “cosmic liturgy” in which all mankind adores God, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput declared in a lecture on Thursday evening. Noting the cultural obstacles to liturgical understanding, he said the renewed liturgy should create Christians who would die rather than not celebrate Mass.
Delivering the Hildebrand Distinguished Lecture at the Liturgical Institute of the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Illinois, the Archbishop of Denver praised Chicago’s “historic role” in the renewal of the liturgy and the evangelization of America. He said the 10th anniversary of the Liturgical Institute shows that this legacy continues.
He opened with a reflection on the respected liturgist and theologian Fr. Romano Guardini. Soon after the Second Vatican Council published its “groundbreaking” document on the liturgy, “Sacrosanctum Concilium,” the priest sent a letter to the Third German Liturgical Conference wondering whether man in an industrial and scientific age is “no longer capable of the liturgical act.”
“I think he put his finger on one of the key questions of mission in his time, and also in ours,” Archbishop Chaput remarked, explaining that the liturgical act is the transformation of personal prayer and piety into “genuine corporate worship” and “the public service that the Church offers to God.”