In This Issue, Worship, April 2020

Summary of the April 2020 issue of Worship

Worship is a peer-reviewed, international ecumenical journal for the study of liturgy and liturgical renewal. Founded in 1926 by Virgil Michel, OSB, and the monks of Saint John’s Abbey, Worship is published six times a year in Collegeville, Minnesota. Subscribe to Worship here.


A Close Reading of the Rite of Confirmation in the 2018 Book of Common Worship
Jonathan Hehn OSL

The Presbyterian Church (USA)’s new Book of Common Worship, published in 2018, marks a significant step in the worship life of that denomination. One of the book’s liturgies, the revised rite for “Profession of Faith (Confirmation),” is of particular interest. Not only does it reintroduce the term “confirmation” to Presbyterian liturgy after a long absence, but it also features some significant ritual elements hitherto foreign to Reformed rites. This paper seeks to address the question of whether or not the new confirmation rite, in its embrace of these elements, compromises key Reformed theological values. It does so using a close reading of the rite, wherein the rite is examined first on its own merits and then in dialogue both with Calvin’s Institutes and the Reformed confessions.

Liturgy of the Hours: Prospects for Inculturation
Stanislaus Campbell, FSC

The forthcoming publication of the second English edition of the Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours can be the occasion in the United States to ponder what actions might be taken to accomplish a reform of the Hours that provides for a suitable inculturation. On this occasion a consideration of how a clearer association of the Hours, particularly Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer, with the times of day at which they are celebrated could lead to action serving as a catalyst for a process of inculturation. This process could include reforms to be initiated by the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments in one of two ways. The first way would involve provision of a document to guide the development of local forms of the Office. The second, would embrace the modification of the General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours to allow for a greater diversification in the celebration of the Hours.

The Synod on the Amazon and Liturgical Inculturation
Mark Francis, CSV

The Instrumentum Laboris or working document prepared for the recent Synod on the Amazon offers an insight into the pastoral vision of Pope Francis. This document, which insists on a more nuanced and profound approach to inculturation, draws not only on Pope Francis’ encyclical Evangelii gaudiumbut also on an extensive consultation of both pastoral agents and ordinary Christians living their faith in Amazonia. Its unique contribution to the synodal process is the inclusion of the voices of the “pueblo santo y fiel” (the holy and faithful common people) in discerning the best way to organize the church and inculturate the liturgy in order to express the faith more clearly using the cultural idioms of the Amazon.

Corpus Christi Church, New York: Its Architecture and Art
Joseph Masheck

An architectural historian and art critic, as well as a longtime parishioner, begins with a brief cultural history of the present, 1936 church, designed by Wilfred Edwards Anthony: the young Thomas Merton converted here, and the church was in the forefront of the postwar liturgical movement. The essay’s architectural half concerns cultural implications of stylistic alternatives in the 1930s (including St John Henry Newman, Geoffrey Scott, Meyer Schapiro, Pie-Raymond Régamy, Rudolf Wittkower): historicizing vs. modernist; any form of classicism vs. Gothic; Baroque vs. Renaissance (including the ‘Ancients and Moderns Dispute’ and the possible double revival of 19th-century British Oratorian-Baroque style). The second part deals with painting: old (two early Italian Renaissance works); commissioned (by Austrian-American Valentine d’Ogries, 1888-1959, including windows), and contemporary (Kieth Milow, Alfonse Borysewicz); plus sculpture by Peter Watts (1916-2002) and an installation by Stephen Antonakos (1926-2013).


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