"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
From a 17th-century print: 'The souldiers in their passage to York turn into reformers pull down Popish pictures, break down rayles, turn altars into tables.' Today Catholic bishops themselves are among the Roundheads warring on reverence and traditional devotions.
What if your bishop decreed all attending Mass must say the "Our Father" with palms lifted, as the priest's, in the orans position. Would you?
What if your bishop ruled you must also hold hands in the orans position for the opening prayer, the prayer over the gifts and the prayer after Communion?
What if your bishop banned kneeling after the Agnus Dei?
And forget kneeling for Communion – what if your bishop forbade you to kneel after taking Communion until all in the assembly had received?
Next door in the San Jose Diocese, Bishop Patrick McGrath in 2000 initially approved a funeral Mass in the Tridentine rite for the late and long-persecuted Cardinal Kung of Shanghai with one proviso – that it be offered facing the congregation.
San Jose Bishop Emeritus Pierre DuMaine shared this antipathy for the traditional Latin Mass, describing it as intended only for a dying generation: "The Holy Father's intent was to give comfort to those who grew up with the old forms (as I did) and remain deeply attached to them. The intent was not to introduce a new generation of Catholics to forms now disallowed, except by indult."
Meantime, the Roundheads pictured above could hardly have done as thorough a job of eradicating any sense of the sacred as the designers of the un-sanctuary of the new LA cathedral.