Friday, July 22, 2016

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 166 - Part III.

YOUCAT Question n. 166 - Part III. Why does the Church celebrate the liturgy so often?

(Youcat answer - repeated) The people of Israel interrupted their work “seven times a day” (Ps 119:164) in order to praise God. Jesus participated in the liturgy and prayer of his people; he taught his disciples to pray and gathered them in the Upper Room so as to celebrate with them the Liturgy of all liturgies: the gift of himself in the Last Supper. The church, which calls us to the liturgy, obeys his command, “Do this in remembrance of me” (1 Cor 11:24b).            

A deepening through CCC    

(CCC 1070 a) In the New Testament the word "liturgy" refers not only to the celebration of divine worship but also to the proclamation of the Gospel and to active charity (Cf. Lk 1:23; Acts 13:2; Rom 15:16, 27; 2 Cor 9:12; Phil 2:14-17, 25, 30). In all of these situations it is a question of the service of God and neighbor. In a liturgical celebration the Church is servant in the image of her Lord, the one "leitourgos" (Cf. Heb 8:2, 6); she shares in Christ's priesthood (worship), which is both prophetic (proclamation) and kingly (service of charity).    

Reflecting and meditating    

(Youcat comment) Just as a man breathes air in order to stay alive, so too the church lives and breathes by celebrating the liturgy. God himself is the one who breathes new life into her day by day and enriches her with gifts through his Word and his sacraments. We can use another image, too: every liturgy is like a rendezvous of love that God writes on our calendar. Anyone who has already experienced God’s love is glad to go to church. Someone who from time to time feels nothing and goes nevertheless shows God his faithfulness.       

(CCC Comment)    

(CCC 1070 b) The liturgy then is rightly seen as an exercise of the priestly office of Jesus Christ. It involves the presentation of man's sanctification under the guise of signs perceptible by the senses and its accomplishment in ways appropriate to each of these signs. In it full public worship is performed by the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Head and his members. From this it follows that every liturgical celebration, because it is an action of Christ the priest and of his Body which is the Church, is a sacred action surpassing all others. No other action of the Church can equal its efficacy by the same title and to the same degree (SC 7 § 2-3).        

(The next question is:  What is liturgy?)  

No comments: