Diocesan Liturgical Formation day
On Saturday 29 October, three staff members of the Rosmini College Religious Education Department attended a Diocesan Liturgical Formation day in the Tindall Auditorium here at Rosmini College. It was a very well attended event. The day was all about “Exploring Pope Francis’ Letter Desiderio Desideravi”. This is a recent letter that our Holy Father has sent to us to encourage us to rediscover our beautiful Liturgy and renew ourselves from within as the people of God.
We are thankful to Reverend Father Pat Brady who presented on “Re-learning a Forgotten Way of Doing Things: Our Place; and our Role in the Liturgical Renewal” and Judith Courtney from the Liturgy Centre Te Kawe Ritenga Tapu who presented on the “Formation by the Liturgy: Re-engaging with a Fruitful way of doing things.”
Our Pope puts out a plea to all of us to recognise that the liturgy of the Mass goes beyond the Eucharistic celebration, and as Catholics we are challenged to ‘recapture' the significance and importance of religious symbolism. This requires living the symbolism through immersing ourselves in the whole experience. This will enable us to encounter Christ within the liturgy that we may truly experience the mystery of the Word.
From the start when we make the Sign of the Cross, we enter a new space. Doorways have the same effect. We become one body united in the presence of Christ. We participate together as we are one body. This is referring to our actions from when we enter the Church building until we are dismissed from the building. Everything we do, we move in communion. As active and engaging we are working and are active participants we are called to gather and begin intentionally with the Sign of the Cross, stand up together, sit down together, speak together, sing together in unison as a choir in one voice. We are not here as individuals, but as a collective body in unity with Christ, the priest and congregation. It is all about the “WE” and not the “I.” We are participating in the priesthood of Christ; Christ offering himself to the Father.
Pope Francis is asking us to focus on our mindset and adapt ourselves for the Liturgy. We as Catholics are sacramental and symbolic people. What we do, and how we do it forms us. We need to again become capable of recognising symbol and understand truly what it means to be thankful and gather for Eucharist.
By re-discovering our Liturgy, we will go a far way to experience a renewal in spirit and body and truly encounter Christ through his Paschal Mystery.
The topic is vast, and the workshop was the tip of the iceberg, but as a practising Catholic looking to deepen my faith and encounter with Christ, I felt the day was a rediscovery and renewal of our Catholic faith and enhancing our love for the Eucharist.
Lynne van Wyk