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Interesting Excerpt

  /   Thursday April 03, 2003  

I took a quick look on what the GIRM says on the arrangement of the Church, and I found an interesting quote:

Care should be taken that the faithful be able not only to see the priest, the deacon, and the lectors but also, with the aid of modern technical means, to hear them without difficulty.

This is interesting because I know of at least one priest who has made a big deal of how the congregation should be able to see each other and therefore see Christ in one another. The GIRM quote is therefore interesting for what it does not say. It makes no mention of the congregation being able to see each other. This is often the justification for the church-in-the-round design.

Now, there are some that may argue that the church-in-the-round makes the altar easier to see. I have not found this to be so. Try sitting in one of the outlying pews and see what you can see. The document further states that we should be able to easily come forward for Holy Communion. I have almost missed Communion because I couldn’t figure out when to get up and where to go in one of these churches. I had to signal an Extraordinary Minister who started to walk away as I approached.

Besides, the traditional arrangement, with the priest facing the same direction as the people, symbolizes our movement together towards God. I can see no other symbolism in the church-in-the-round other than a community that has closed in on itself. Such a community is dead.

Category: Posts imported from Danger! Falling Brainwaves, Uncategorized



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