Saturday, July 19, 2008

Coverage of Final, Outdoor Papal Mass on the NLM this Evening

Because the timezones are so different between Australia and North America and even Western Europe, it seems pertinent to remind all who are interested in watching, or watching coverage, of the outdoor Papal Mass from World Youth Day, that this will begin around 7:00pm EST -- or midnight GMT.

In many regards, this final outdoor Mass is what has become synonymous with an event like World Youth Day.

This type of liturgy, not planned directly by the Msgr. Marini's office and therefore not entirely within his planning or control (unlike say, a large outdoor Mass in St. Peter's Square), surely provides some of the biggest challenges for this reason. But it is also what makes events like these interesting to watch both from the perspective of the Holy See providing liturgical direction, and from the perspective of how this general liturgical direction will have been noted, received and planned for by local officials. This is highlighted all the more in what is considered a liturgy directed at Catholic young adults, for often that is misconstrued to suggest it must be "modern" or at least not too traditional -- ironic, not the least of which for the reason that young adults are far more open and interested in traditional things than the preceding few generations.

Of course, if you're expecting tonight's liturgy to make a complete break with past WYD outdoor Masses, that is likely an unrealistic expectation as the Pope seems clearly tied to implementing his liturgical reforms by degrees -- and while those degrees have been remarkably fast (all things considered) at liturgical events within the Holy See, events like this, particularly for the reasons stated above, take longer.

The NLM will, as usual, be providing live coverage beginning at 7:00pm EST tonight, with our focus -- as also per usual -- being upon watching and commenting upon what liturgical reforms of Benedict XVI may be evident during the event and what sort of progression might be seen in this regard. We hope you'll join us.

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