The latest rubbish to come from the desk of Elizabeth Harrington self styled theologian was seen in the website Liturgy News last week.
Entitled "Do we really know what we are doing?" it launches into a critique of things it considers heretical; firstly the separation of bread and wine from the Body and Blood of Christ and secondly the separation of the Eucharist and the Blessed Sacrament.
There are a series of three propositions that she
(a) At the celebration of Eucharist, the past events of the paschal mystery – Christ’s life, death and resurrection – are made present so that we become part of the story and participate in it.
That is correct although put in the language of primary school children.
b) I have seen processions of gifts accompanied by lighted candles, smoking thurible and grand music, giving the clear impression that it is about something more than simply bringing forward bread and wine and our gifts for the poor.
I am curious where she had seen such a procession as I have not ween such an event happening. The GIRM states that it is "appropriate" to have an Offertory Procession but not mandatory (GIRM 140) so I dont know why some parish has put rituals into this procession elements that are in the rubrics.
then it gets into some really silly stuff, and this is about the Eucharistic Prayer itself. She contrasts the theology of the Middle Ages (and remember this is a mentality where "Middle Ages" is code for bad or deficient) with "current theological understanding is that the whole of the Eucharistic Prayer consecrates the gifts. During the Eucharistic Prayer we pray that the Holy Spirit will make our offerings holy, so that they may become for us the body and blood of Jesus Christ our Lord." If there is something that angers these liturgists its the "consecration".
However there is no teaching within Church documents which says that the whole of the Eucharistic Prayer is consecratory. This is merely PERSONAL OPINION. If you think that the whole of the Eucharistic Prayer is consecratory then why hasnt the Church abolished the elevations and the Memorial Acclamation and go back the rubrics during Pope Gregory the Great's time where the Eucharistic Prayer was said silently from beginning to end and then the gifts were elevated and the celebrant sang "per ommina saecula saeculorum, Amen".
The it really gets sillier, "Continued calls from some quarters for the tabernacle to be put (back) on the altar or immediately behind it demonstrate the confusion that exists between the sacrifice of the Mass and adoration of the reserved Sacrament."
Yes putting back the tabernacle to a central point makes a lot of sense as Pope Paul VI said "to make it the living heart of our churches" Then she selectively quotes Pius XII to get the trad minded on side where he is supposed to have said that
“The altar surpasses the tabernacle because on it is offered the sacrifice of the Lord. In the tabernacle, on the other hand, Christ is present as long as the consecrated species remain, without, however, offering himself perpetually.”
But he also said that:
"one would be straying from the straight path were he to wish the altar restored to its primitive tableform; (Mediator Dei n 62)
In his address to the International Congress on Pastoral Liturgy on the Liturgical Movement, Pius argued against the separation of Altar and tabernacle arguing for unity.
Again Ms Harrington resorts to twisting the truth to get her ideology across. I need to find out what her age is (im sure she is a Vatican II feminist) to get an idea of when she retires and people will no longer be misinformed by this drivel.