Liturgical Sensibilities, Liturgical Understanding, Dr. Jeff Mirus

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By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, Aug 06, 2021

Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and

I hope nobody else shares my particular liturgical consolations, because broadly speaking I don’t have any. I cannot use the fingers of even a single hand in counting the number of times, over 73 years, that I have been emotionally caught up in the action of any liturgy, regardless of form. Although I have some preferences, I have always been far more mystified by liturgical conflict than by the liturgy itself. Intellectually, of course, I deeply appreciate the liturgy. I know it is of vital importance—to God’s plan for our salvation, to our reception of the sacraments, to the nourishment and formation of the members of the Body of Christ, to my family, to me personally.

I also have an extremely strong intellectual grasp of the principle that the liturgy is the Church’s to prescribe, not the celebrant’s or the congregation’s to improvise. As such I do react, even emotionally, against all who insist upon personal innovation (which is to say making the liturgy a vehicle for the transmission of their own personalities and preferences). But I also react, even emotionally, against those who insist that one approved form of the liturgy is superior to another in its transmission of grace, or who cling to any particular form in defiance of the current liturgical regulations of the Church. …

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