Mutual Influence amongst Eastern Rites and Western Rites & Uses
  • How many on this forum are 1)conscious of influence between rites in their parishes, 2)overtly seek such influence in their parishes, and in general, through experience feel that there is an ongoing but unspecific influence amongs the rites and uses of the Catholic Church. Or, are these experienced as concrete enteties, self contained and with little if any influence outside their own domains?

    If you do experience such influence, what would you say are the marks of it? Do you believe this to be a positive or negative phenomenon?

    We in the Western Church, The Catholic Church, are comprised of about 30+ Rites, in addition, in the west having several historic Rites, plus a number of religious Uses, and, now, an Anglican Ordinariate with its Use.

    Is it proper for there to be inter-ritual influence? (As if we did not know this to be an historical reality!) What forms might it take? Is it a need? Not a need? A plus? A minus?

    I am prompted in this matter by a variety of remarks about the Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter and its attendant Anglican Use. Some make no attempt at disguising their wish for Anglican liturgical style and music to enrich the Roman Rite and influence the manner of its celebration. Others have proferred that there will, most probably, be little cross pollination for, perhaps, two reasons: 1)Many would not want Anglican music and churchmanship infiltrating their Roman Rite masses. 2)They would see this, with some justification, as making their own worship less Roman (we will leave aside for the nonce which of several Roman and 'Roman' aesthetics they might be preferring - whether The Roman Rite is, in fact, actually being celebrated at very many places.

    What do you see as strengths in the Roman Rite and its various Uses, the several other western Rites (which actually are only Uses), and the Eastern Rites.

    Then there are the oriental rites. What aspects of their liturgical usages may be borrowed with a positive result?
    (They, of course, jealously guard the integrity of their rites. I perceive this as good. Should we all be, if I may use the word non-pejoratively, insular?)

    Should we not pointedly attend and share in all our rites and uses to experience the true Universality of the Church?

    And, a final academic question: I have wondered many, many times over the years why there wasn't an exodus of conservative Catholics to the sanity of the Eastern Rites, rather than to Pius X schism, or oh-so-precious EF... or, just putting up with, suffering through what they had?

    I hope the points and questions above will be seen as engendering earnest conversation.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 9,176
    Quite a few Roman-rite Catholics did start attending Eastern Catholic services in the past 40 years. I recently saw a humorous graphic on the internet about this: someone made a spoof poster with a photo of a Divine Liturgy, and a caption like: "Melkites: we're there for you when the Roman parish gets flaky."
  • "why there wasn't an exodus of conservative Catholics" ... Is it meant exodus from Novus Ordo parishes? I think people get used to many things, and if there isn't going on something extremely outrageous, they will remain where they are.

    Why not to Eastern rite parishes? One of the causes might be that they are perceived as strictly ethnic communities.

    "why there wasn't an exodus of conservative Catholics to the sanity of the Eastern Rites, rather than to Pius X schism, or oh-so-precious EF"? I think that it is just normal that the Roman rite Catholics would not give up what is by right theirs - the traditional form of the Roman rite. The 'sanity' of the Eastern rites, too, is not to be taken for granted. Among the Orientals, too, there are individuals who want introduce novelties. The more Catholics will preserve the heritage each of their respective rite, the more they will help their brethren of other rites.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,992
    Because Roman rite Catholics in the pews were effectively trained for centuries not to care about the quality of the liturgy, but merely to care that they had fulfilled their preceptual obligations.
  • Liam's answer is the one I agree with the most, yes.

    M. Jackson osborn, You always have interesting things to say here. This was a great question, which I hope engenders greater discussion.

    I suspect you have a more academic mindset like I do. Intellectually curious mystically inclined people with free time on their hands are typically able to adapt themselves to appreciate a wide range of 'traditional churches and liturgies'. For the average person however this is not necessarily the case. The average person is often easily confused by differences between different rites, churches, faiths and cultures and lacks the time to figure out what 'funny business' is occuring.

    Therefore they stick to what they know.

    let me think, examples I've heard of traditional leaning latin rite people who although they visited them, couldnt quite feel comfortable in an eastern rite church.

    excuses/barriers include:

    #1. A deep seated feeling that only the latin rite is really "pure" and the "real" catholic church and these other rites are trying to trick them ("once a schismatic, always a schismatic") ("If it was good enough for my ancestors/St Patrick, it's good enough for me", "I better stay put/betrayal of ancestors.")
    #2. people sing too much, not enough quiet (many traditional leaning latins like the solitude of low mass)
    #3. not enough locations to make it worth it if you move, many eastern catholic churches have less than 50 churches in the USA
    #4. iconostasis obscuring view of consecration and liturgy
    #5. Marian apparitions and saints that they are familiar with never talk about eastern churches, therefore they must not be very relevant or legitimate.
    #6. all the people in the icons and frescos look sad and depressed, not happy (an eminent musicologist from musica sacra with 4 doctorates told this to me! )
    #7. funny liturgical language /ethnic barriers (garlic breath etc.)
    #8. leavened eucharist
    #9. the surprise of a golden spoon to receive the intincted eucharist (not used by everyone though).
    #10. uncomfortability with potentially married priests (rare as this is)
    #11. hard to find holy water

    By and large At this point there are twice as many FSSP/Society St Pius X churches/chapels/missions in the United States as their are Melkite Greek-Catholic ones. To speak of all eastern catholic churches in general, they certainly did outnumber traditional western churches 10 years, but these days they may not.

    Another view with the anglican ordinariate will be that they are tainted with protestant influence. The more anglo catholic churches may not be, but these are going to be the exception, should they be allowed to keep their pristine pure "english missal" tridentine english masses, we will soon know.
  • In the archdiocese of harrisburg, PA perhaps the only priest who attempted ad orientem position at novus ordo mass was a bi-ritual polish american. The perception was that the bishop would have mercy on him as he was "forced to be traditional" from years experience serving a byzantine rite parish previously.
    The same priest also had frescos modeled on giotta painted throughout the church , as you know giottos frescos had strong resemblence to byzantine art.

    This suggests that If all priests and bishops in the USA were bi-rituals, good fruits might come from it.
    Tradition would return through the view of "ecumenism" and "hippy/tourist/orientalist fascination with exotic utopian liturgical culture".

    On the other hand they might all turn into "Kiko Arguello"s instead ! yikes <-neocatechumenal way founder's masterpiece of byzantine art. (so he claims)