Sunday, August 10, 2008

More Benedictine Arrangements

In view of the NLM's continuing desire to foster proper orientation in the sacred liturgy, and ultimately, the broader restoration of ad orientem liturgicum as it was predominantly and traditionally represented, I wish to bring your attention to some further "Benedictine arrangement" sightings.

The use of the six candlesticks and cross upon an otherwise "versus populum" altar is one way to begin the process of re-orientation described above, as well as a means to help gradually bring back ad orientem in our parishes -- though I would remind parish priests, again, to not consider this end as something they cannot implement sooner than later in at least some of their parish masses, while using this other arrangement for some of their other Masses. I believe we too often think in longer terms that is actually pastorally necessary.

The first sighting to report is from the cathedral of Charleston, South Carolina:

The second photo comes from the St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic Newman Center at Illinois State and Illinois Wesleyan Universities in the Diocese of Peoria. Apparently the chaplain frequently celebrates Mass ad orientem. For this occasion, where the Bishop celebrated the liturgy, the use of six candlesticks and cross were employed.

Simply as a point of note, I would encourage them to try to acquire some taller candles and candlesticks for the future which would make this arrangement even more effective.

Finally, an image from the Cathedral of Lima, Peru, which we have shown here before. Previously, two candlesticks and cross were used, but since at least the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul, six candlesticks and cross are now being used.

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