Sunday, June 2, 2013
The beat goes on (liturgical abuse)
We have a non-deacon seminarian staying at out parish for the summer. He seems like a nice fellow.
But today he preached.
Father got up, gave a brief message, then turned the rest of the homily time over to the seminarian.
A liturgical abuse.
The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) states:
“The Homily should ordinarily be given by the priest celebrant himself. He may entrust it to a concelebrating priest or occasionally, according to circumstances, to the deacon, but never to a lay person. In particular cases and for a just cause, the homily may even be given by a Bishop or a priest who is present at the celebration but cannot concelebrate.” (GIRM 66)
Redemptionis Sacramentum (RS) reiterates GIRM 66 and adds the following:
“It should be borne in mind that any previous norm that may have admitted non-ordained faithful to give the homily during the Eucharistic celebration is to be considered abrogated by the norm of canon [law]. This practice is reprobated, so that it cannot be permitted to attain the force of custom.” (RS 65)
“If the need arises for the gathered faithful to be given instruction or testimony by a layperson in a Church concerning the Christian life, it is altogether preferable that this be done outside Mass. Nevertheless, for serious reasons it is permissible that this type of instruction or testimony be given after the Priest has proclaimed the Prayer after Communion. This should not become a regular practice, however. Furthermore, these instructions and testimony should not be of such a nature that they could be confused with the homily, nor is it permissible to dispense with the homily on their account.” (RS 74)
“Any Catholic, whether Priest or Deacon or lay member of Christ’s faithful, has the right to lodge a complaint regarding a liturgical abuse to the diocesan Bishop or the competent Ordinary equivalent to him in law, or to the Apostolic See on account of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff. It is fitting, however, insofar as possible, that the report or complaint be submitted first to the diocesan Bishop. This is naturally to be done in truth and charity.” (RS 184)
We have a history of liturgical abuses in our diocese. We are currently waiting for a new bishop to be appointed - the last reached retirement age, and in surprisingly quick time, his resignation was accepted with no bishop appointed to replace him.
I fear that these kinds of abuses will continue until we get a new bishop.
Pax et bonum