Wednesday, October 15, 2008

More Benedictine Arrangements [UPDATED]

From time to time, I am still sent in images of the "Benedictine" arrangement of 6 candlesticks and a cross on the altar. More and more do we see this appearing, to the point that it almost becomes non-news -- barring exceptional circumstances. That said, I think it pertinent to remind ourselves again as to why this is an important step towards the ultimate re-orientation of the liturgy, which is particularly well-accomplished through the reclamation of our tradition of Eastward liturgical orientation. It is also a pertinent reminder of why what the Pope does is so very important as a witness and example.

Case in point, in how many places did we see this arrangement, let alone the seventh candle for a presiding bishop before the Pope started to do so?

(From the Mass of Dedication for a new parish church - St. John the Evangelist in Oxford, Mississippi)

In this example, one can also see how an otherwise small altar is significantly transformed by means of these tall, graceful candlesticks and cross, which lends a sense of verticality and presence to the altar, making it the central focal point of the sanctuary:

The addition of a frontal would add to this even more.

It is to be hoped that our parish priests will continue to implement these "Benedictine" reforms as part of our process of re-enchanting the liturgy of the typical parish.

Priests and others: do continue to send in these images and your stories.


An Ambrosian rite priest sent in the following:

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