Summary of the January 2021 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 quarterly in Collegeville, Minnesota. Subscribe to Worship here.
THE AMEN CORNER
Pedagogical Reflections on Changing Uses of the Term “Worship”
John D. Witvliet
The Divine Liturgy – A New Order
The Divine Liturgy—A New Order offers a new text for Byzantine Rite parishes. It honors the proclamation of the word of God, praise, petition, ritual movement, the rite of communion, and the rites of dismissal. This new order is not an entirely new creation, although it presents much new material. It is similar to the writing of a new icon or the composition of a musical setting in that it follows patterns presented by tradition, but does not merely copy the most recent antecedent, and permits the artist’s originality. It draws from liturgical history, but avoids antiquarianism.
Liturgical Actions: Anamnesis and/or Mimesis of Sacred Scripture? Exemplified by the Rite of Footwashing (Holy Thursday) and Ephphetha (Baptismal Liturgy)
This paper studies the connection of Scripture and liturgical actions with the examples of the footwashing and the Ephphetha rite. It examines their historical development and the current rite and especially explores the relationship of anamnesis and mimesis in them.
Although the footwashing rite contains mimetic elements, it is not simply a (theatrical) re-enactment of John 13, but a liturgical action that starts to put Jesus’ commandment of love into practice during the celebration which then will be fulfilled in everyday life. It is an anamnesis of his command.
The Ephphetha rite refers back to Mark 7:32-35 and shapes selected aspects of it to a catechumenal (adults) or post-baptismal rite (children).
The conclusion reflects on how the anamnesis of Scripture in the liturgy is supported by mimetic elements. Anamnesis and mimesis cannot be strictly separated. The rites liturgically enact what Scripture says.
Original Sin, Baptism and the New Cosmology
When theologies of original sin were first developed in the early ages of the Church, the cosmology that reigned was a static cosmology which posited a fully formed universe that was perfect at its origins. Through the fault of our first parents, as known in the Biblical account of Genesis 2 and 3, humanity and all of creation fell into a state where sin and death ruled. Christian teaching after Augustine argued that baptism was a remedy for this original sin and provided the gateway to salvation. But what happens to our doctrine of original sin and baptism if it is not based on a static cosmology but on a dynamic and evolutionary one? This article explores original sin and baptism from the perspective of the New Cosmology where death is intrinsic to a material universe, perfection is ahead of us, and human morality is still in a stage of development.
The Recovery of Mystery or Liturgy as Aporia
The tension within the pairing of lex orandi and lex credendi is also a tension between mystery and certainty, a complex set of shifting and contested relationships, meaning, identities, territories, and roles. Within this irresolvable tension, or aporia, is a mysterious element that gives life and energy to Christian faith and practice, a worthwhile and creative tension that reveals itself most directly in our struggle with liturgical worship. This aporia can be described as a collection of tensions between mysterium orandi and mysterium credendi, the gathered community and the centrality of the priest-presider in liturgy, the economy of the mystery of salvation and the mystery of the economy of the liturgy itself, or ultimately the opus operantum of the sacrament and the opus operantis of the liturgical minister. Here the works of Odo Casel, Giorgio Agamben, and Karl Rahner are used to explore the transcendental mystery at the heart of both faith and worship, leading to the conclusion that liturgical worship is a mystery to be lived rather than resolved.
Eoin Garrett reviews The Masses of Seán and Peadar Ó Riada: Explorations in Vernacular Chant by John O’Keefe. Cork, Ireland: Cork University Press, 2017. 308 pages. €39.00/£35.00. ISBN: 978-1-782052-35-7.
John F. Baldovin, SJ reviews The Mystery of Christ in Time and Space: The Christian Celebration by Pietro Angelo Muroni. Translated by Dom David Foster. Vatican City: Urbaniana University Press, 2020. 334 pages. €33.25. ISBN: 978-88-401-7069-5.
Nathan Chase reviews @Worship: Liturgical Practices in Digital Worlds by Teresa Berger. New York: Routledge, 2017. 146 + xv pages. $47.95. ISBN: 978-0-367-88855-8.
Mark R. Francis, CSV, reviews Context and Text: A Method for Liturgical Theology, Revised Edition by Kevin W. Irwin. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press Academic, 2018. 712 pages. $49.95.
Irene Nowell, OSB, reviews Praise, Lament, and Prayer: A Psalter for Singing; Volume 1 by Carl P. Daw, Jr. Carol Stream, IL: Hope Publishing Company, 2018. 149 + vii pages. $9.95. ISBN: 978-1-933710-18-1.