I already wrote about this little piece on the Vatican website before, but in light of the departure of His Holiness for Turkey I reviewed it and am driven to ask you a question. Here is the first line of the piece on the website "presenting" the papal trip:
1. The Significance of the Apostolic Journey
In the footsteps of his predecessors Paul VI and John Paul II, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has chosen to honour the land of Turkey with one of the first Apostolic Journeys of his Pontificate.
This was written by the Papal M.C., His Excellency Piero Marini. It was widely thought (and not without substance) that His Excellency was going to be removed by Benedict from his present role and either give him a diocese to shepherd (some say he declined more than once) or a curial desk to shepherd (rumors had him going to … well… enough of that). However, after all this time, His Excellency is still running the liturgical show.
It is my dream to see His Excellency M.C. a pontifical Mass with the "Tridentine" Rite at the main altar of St. Peter or in the Lateran… heck… in Hoboken, New Jersey for all I care, just as long as he does it. Marini would do the thing perfectly despite his antipathy for the older rite. After all, he likes his job, right?
Does the text above strike you as having been written by someone who really wants to keep his job? I would say so.
Just to remind you, this also appears in that same piece on the Vatican website.
The Byzantine Divine Liturgy, like that of all the Eastern Churches, is celebrated facing East. The priest and all the faithful look to the East, whence Christ will come again in glory. The priest intercedes before the Lord for his people; he walks at the head of the people towards the encounter with the Lord. At different moments the priest turns to the people: for the proclamation of the Gospel, for the dialogue preceding the anaphora, for the communion with the holy gifts, and for all the blessings. These symbolize moments in which the Lord himself comes forth to meet his people.
This, too, was authored by His Excellency.
It is amazing how a little anxiety can produce greater clarity of thought, no?