Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk on liturgical warfare in the Catholic Church.


About John Lilburne



1328 K Tue 14 May 2002

I have been reading a speech by Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk, which was printed in Origins of 14 March 2002. Its title is "Liturgy, Law and Life" which I see as an important topic.

He describes it as liturgical warfare, between two camps:

... The two main sides can be variously described and are perhaps most easily identified by their extremities. One side might be called the liturgical Sinatras whose theme song is "I Did It My Way." The other might be called the liturgical gestapo, who descend on any violation of liturgical norms like Gauleiters looking for foreign spies. These same two general tendencies could be called, on the one hand, the privateers (sailing under their own flag and doing their own thing) and on the other, vigilantes who have taken the law into their own hands and who see each and every violation of law as equally deserving of tar and feathers. ... So we have over here on the left the Sinatras, the privateers, the entertainers and over there on the right the gestapo, the vigilantes, the magicians. ...

It provides a vivid image. My alignment is with the law abiding side. I think everyone should be. The image of gestapo for this I see as too severe. The image of Sinatras, privateers and entertainers I see as too gentle.

Particularly in the light of the publicity of the criminal activity of priests the Catholic Church needs a purification. In management language a "total quality culture". In the words of Jesus "Be perfect, ..." (Matthew 5:48).

Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 14 May 2002.