From Damian Thompson‘s blog. Be sure to go over and take a look at the comments there, too.
My emphases and comments:
I recently came across this parish magazine article, by a former seminarian called Damian Rhodes, which shows that for some progressive Catholics even the sloppiest modern Mass is not “diverse” enough. Please read it. Oh, and make sure you pay close attention to the final paragraph.
Recently I found myself meditating about our own local faith community. Worshipping our loving and vulnerable parent God in the company of fellow journeyers, I feel pained on behalf of people who are victimised in society.
Only last Sunday, the bidding prayers asked for God’s healing for those facing challenges of health and wholeness, and for those of other faith traditions, but are we really brave enough to embrace true difference?
When did you last hear a bidding prayer for the transvestite, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual or asexual communities? What about a prayer for our divorced and civilly-partnered sisters? It is common to hear us addressed as “sisters and brothers”, excluding – albeit without meaning to – those who refuse to identify with either gender. [Ummm.... how are these people "victims"?]
Throughout our celebrations, when we should raise our hearts to our Parent-Creator, [yuk] the celebrant looks down on us from on high. Instead of worshipping alongside his sisters, brothers and sister-brothers he faces us like an accusing judge .
We worship in foreign languges – but has it ever occured to us that for some worshippers even these carry imperialist associations? [blech]
Our native-Nicaraguan sisters must feel excluded when the words are those of their Spanish oppressors. What about our sisters from Africa who find that the colonial languages of French or English are often used, rather than their local dialect? What thought is given to persecuted Roma who have to hear the tongue of a contemtuous majority rather than their own?
How often have I longed for a liturgy that unites rather than divides, a worship in conformity with the Spirit of Vatican II rather than the culturally compromised liturgy we have today. [As do most of us, I think.]
I am delighted to say, though, that a nearby parish recently had a novel and radical solution to this problem. They have discovered a way of expressing our desire to gather as people of faith without siding with oppressors. In conformity to Vatican II they avoided using the language of any of wou world’s oppressive regimes. Instead of us proclaiming that God became “man” in the Creed it uses a word meaning “human being”.
Not only this, but the worship-facilitators faced the same direction as us, [!] pilgrims together with those marginalised in our communities. Instead of hearing a man’s voice throughout, I was able to enjoy silence in which I could meditate on humankind’s oneness with nature.
Alas, most presiders are far too entrenched in their traditionalist-conservative outlook to even consider this novel solution. But what is the name of this diversity-aware service, I hear you ask?
It is called, I believe, the “Extraordinary Form” of the Roman Rite.