By Marco Tosatti
Forgive me an outburst, but I understand why people no longer go to Mass, and I also have the remedy. If someone can tell the person responsible, for example the reigning Pontiff, please do so and I will not claim copyright.
I immediately say the solution, divided into two options.
The first: move the homily at the end of the Mass, and make it optional. That is to say that after the blessing anyone who wants can stay there to be educated and edified. Those who want to remain in the state of grace in which the celebration of the Sacrifice has put him or her, goes away.
The second: guarantee every Sunday a Mass at least without homily, or with a homily strictly contained in three minutes. In three minutes you can condense the spiritual juice of the Scriptures, and give the faithful ideas and food for personal reflection, without watering down the broth, or doing verbal theater. Of course, one can always recite the Rosary mentally, but …
Today I went to Mass in a large Roman church, for reasons of time. Do you believe me if I tell you that during the homily I felt like getting up and leaving? Among other examples related to formal purity – it was the episode of the Pharisees who were scandalized because the disciples ate without washing their hands; and from a hygienic point of view they were certainly right – there was the one related to the pre-Eucharistic fast. It was said, as if it were a conquest, that an hour is now enough. Instead, before the Council, one had to be fasting – at least the priests, he added – from midnight. And if one had to celebrate Mass early, he could also go. But if one had to celebrate later in the morning – “it was a twelve hour fast!” Seeing the protruding belly of the celebrant making a nice curve under the vestments, one could be sure that his fasting did not go beyond sixty-one minutes … Then at the time of the exchange of peace, he left the altar, and came to greet ALL. We were about forty people, standing like dead fish in an unnatural pause, which broke all the rhythm of sacredness. The Church does not need liturgists, but choreographers who teach that in an event there is a rhythm, which leads to a climax, and breaking it is a disaster. Also for spiritual concentration, the recollection of those who participate in it. Let me be a bad person, but I had the tremendous impression that the celebrant was play-acting. Speaking of the Pharisees …
(From Stilum Curiae, September 2 2018. 2017©AP. Used with permission)