The first principle of the Ordinariate is then about Christian unity. St. Basil the Great, the Church’s greatest ecumenist, literally expended his life on the work of building bridges between orthodox brethren who shared a common faith, but who had become separated from one another in a Church badly fragmented by heresy and controversy. He taught that the work of Christian unity requires deliberate and ceaseless effort...St. Basil often talked with yearning about the archaia agape, the ancient love of the apostolic community, so rarely seen in the Church of his day. This love, he taught, is a visible sign that the Holy Spirit is indeed present and active, and it is absolutely essential for the health of the Church.

- Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, Homily on the Occasion of his Formal Institution as Ordinary

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Place of Awful Music

So what is there, then, in ‘Roman’ liturgy that makes some Anglicans murmur quietly to each other ‘N.Q.O.C.D.’?

Well, there’s the music, of course. The CofE has a truly splendid patrimony of hymnody (just think of those unmatched translations of J.M.Neale), and has some excellent, and many good, choirs up and down the country. But not as many as it had, and there are also excellent choirs in the Catholic Church, though not so many, of course. My impression is that many, if not most, CofE parishes now struggle if they want to maintain a musical tradition, largely because there simply isn’t the body of layfolk to draw on. And it also strikes me that the number of parishes replacing Hymns Ancient and Modern with Hymns Weird and Wonderful is increasing. A lot of this is simply because our culture itself is becoming increasingly dumbed-down...

Read the rest of Fr. Finnegan's thoughts on parish music at his blog Valle Adurni.

1 comment:

  1. It's not Fr Finigan. He's at