THE CHURCHES ARE open now in the Archdiocese of Detroit for “public Mass,” but Catholics have not been set free. The rules for being permitted to kneel at Calvary are in perfect accord with the rules of the state. Check-ins. Reservations. Social Distancing. Face covering. Every hollow one of them.
The archbishop has bowed to the governor. By order of a Prince of the Church, a successor of the Apostles, the priests must obey, the people must comply. The Mask must be worn.
(Read Part I here)
Behind their feigned concern for containing the virus, stopping the spread, saving lives, lies another paradigm, a lethal distortion of all that is true and good.
IT IS MAY, Mary’s month, the month of flowers. Violets poke through the grass, and the tulips are in bloom. A ribbon of bright daffodils—planted in preparation for a golf tournament that will not happen this year--line Woodward Avenue at the border of Palmer Woods. I think of Wordsworth’s poem as I pass by them.
It is the solemn hour. The priest has summoned God from Heaven. The Consecration has been done. The ancient Sacrifice is renewed. Our Lord lies on the altar. He lies there, waiting. Waiting for you to come to Him. Waiting to come to you.
First, we must prepare. Our hearts must be ready.
Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum, the priest intones in the old Rite; the Peace of the Lord be with you always, he says in the new.
By the power granted him at his ordination, it is the Peace of Christ the priest bestows, not his own. Not friendly sociability or kindly affability. Not openness or caring or concern. None of those things, just the awesome Peace of the Holy One, Jesus Christ Our Lord. It is the wounded Hand of God reaching out to touch us with His Love. This supernatural Peace is ours to receive. It is ours to keep. It is ours to have confidence in the One Who, in a few moments, will come to us, will enter our soul, will feed us with Himself.