Wednesday 14 October 2009

St Therese ......

Rita has commented on her visit with the relics of St Therese at Oxford, and, I think, captures two of the important points about the visit. One is the sheer enthusiasm in an ordinary expression of Catholic faith:
The faithful and the keen to be more faithful, have regained a sense of worth and belonging. Forget traditional and liberal divides, this was about the ordinary being so ordinary in their faith, simplicity and togetherness that it was extraordinary.

And the other is that there was a freedom available in the way in which people venerated the relics. Different people venerated in different ways, and, I suspect, each venue had its own different "feel". This freedom is possible, and enriching, in devotional life; and it exists in an orientation towards the Liturgical, where rubrics rightly constrain freedom.

The two points - the enthusiasm of the ordinary expression of faith, and its freedom - are closely connected; and one hopes that the visit will prompt a growth in the devotional life in parishes, and end situations where the only things that happen in Church are the strictly Liturgical.

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