John Lilburne's journal about "Crimes of Obedience" by Herbert Kelman and V. Lee Hamilton.
2212 Wed 5 Sep 2001
I was browsing the library shelves this afternoon and came across a book which got my attention: "Crimes of Obedience" by Herbert Kelman and V. Lee Hamilton (Yale University Press, 1989).
On the back it has:
I have read the first few chapters this afternoon, which gives examples of the issues: the My Lai massacre in Vietnam in 1968, the Watergate burgulary and cover-up, the Nazi's final solution, the Iran-Contra hearings and in Argentina "the disappeared" of 1976-1983.
My situation is less dramatic, but it involves similar issues. Last Sunday I was at Mass at the Cathedral. Archbishop Hart sat for the "Gloria". Two priests on either side of him, Reverend David Cartwright and Reverend Colin Olerenshaw, followed his lead and sat.
Here is a quote from "Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite" by Peter Elliott, a Monsignor, (Ignatius Press, 1995):
The "Ceremonial of Bishops" was published in 1984. According to a 1989 translation by Liturgical Press, in no. 135: "During the Gloria all stand." (page 53). So the practice of sitting contradicts this. No provision is made for "when the music is prolonged". The music should be so that people can follow the liturgical laws and stand.
So I stand for the Gloria. At every other church in Melbourne people would stand for the Gloria. But at the Cathedral the Archbishop sits. He is the recognised authority, so it is human nature for people to follow him and sit, rather than follow me and the "Ceremonial of Bishops" by standing.
But by doing this the Church's law is undermined. As a consequence education about the Catholic Church must be undermined. If the priests are not following the laws, how can teachers be confident about teaching them to kids? To do so would be to challenge the priest.
Hopefully from this book I am getting a better understanding of the problem and coming closer to a solution.
Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 5 September 2001. Last updated 30 December 2001.
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