Sunday, October 03, 2004

Oh, no! Prayers led by layfolk three times daily!

and folk not blissfully happy about being forced into an anonymous mega-congregation! Behaving just like good Catholics!

But you would not think so from the panic at one of the places I end up sometimes even though I shouldn't.

Serious Catholics, good traditional Catholics, pray three times a day and more. Together when they can. What else are the church bells at 7 am, noon, and 6 pm all about, after all?

So many of the ways of common prayer in our Church are not dependent on the presence of clergy. Beginning with the Church's official prayer, the Liturgy of the Hours. Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer. Night Prayer. Office of Readings. Together with the whole Church. Only natural for Catholic people who are together in one place to pray for a season.

Then the Angelus, the prayer those church bells are named after. An iteration of the Hours for busy people without Liturgy of Hours books.

Novena services. Communal Rosaries. Divine Mercy Chaplet at 3 pm. Scripture services. Hymn sings. Stations.

Not a one dependent on having a cleric to lead. Not one.

So, why the presumption that "lay-led prayer services" has to mean "some abomination that's supposed to look like Mass"? Catholic layfolk, especially those who take their faith as seriously as this group seems to, have so many ways to pray together, and it's no surprise they use them.

Maybe there's a catechetical error that needs corrected among those who think that all common prayer must be the Mass .....

1 comment:

andrea said...

Or perhaps the catechetical error comes in assuming that the other person is bad/evil/wrong. You have the choice of looking at something through charitable eyes or not. Charity says "assume good intentions unless you are given reasons not to." I don't know what the people at St. Albert's are doing -- perhaps whatever it is really is bad/evil/wrong. But I'd rather follow your lead and assume good. Thanks for the reminder!