The following letter to the editor appears in the October edition of the Diocese of Toledo's newspaper, The Catholic Chronicle, which just came out today:
Last month, the Catholic Chronicle ran three letters responding to Bishop Leonard P. Blair's column (Aug 4) in which he addressed the changes recently adopted for the English translation of the Roman liturgy. All three letters expressed concern that the Church was wasting its precious time bothering with liturgical reform when there are so many problems in the world, including the "recent difficulties and challenges the Church has had to deal with".See also Publius's excellent take on the "time better spent" fallacy.
The implication being made is that the Church can't walk and chew gum at the same time. Or rather, that the Church can't tackle the important issue of providing its members with authentic worship according to the Latin Rite while at the same time addressing matters of social justice.
But we've heard all this before. Jesus Himself was faced with a similar challenge from Judas Iscariot, who claimed that the expensive ritual oil used to annoint the feet of Our Lord was wasted because such oil could have been sold and the money used to help the poor. Jesus responded by noting that there is a time for caring for the poor and a time for worshipping Him - the two are not mutually exclusive.
One can't help but wonder, if there are so many "much more important issues" out there, why those who are so concerned about these issues spend their precious time fighting the liturgical reforms tooth and nail? Don't they think their time could be better used addressing the issues they raise?
James T. "Jay" Anderson
Norwalk St. Mary
Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
Bishop Blair Teaches: "And With Your Spirit"
Catholic Liturgical Liberals Are So Predictable
Catholic Liturgical Liberals Are So Predictable - Redux