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Cardinal Sarah endorses facing East, suggests appendix to Roman Missal

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 06/12/15

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Paying tribute to the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy as a liturgical “Magna Carta,” Cardinal Robert Sarah called for a more faithful implementation of its text, lamented misinterpretations of its teaching on “active participation,” and suggested an appendix to the Roman Missal that might better manifest the continuity of the extraordinary and ordinary forms of the celebration of the Mass. “The liturgy is essentially the action of Christ,” the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship wrote in the June 12 edition of L’Osservatore Romano. “If this vital principle is not received in faith, it is likely to make the liturgy a human work, a self-celebration of the community.”
…Citing the teaching of Pope Francis, Cardinal Sarah criticized the attitude of priests who make themselves the focal point of the liturgy. “It is entirely consistent with the conciliar constitution, it is indeed opportune that, during the rite of penance, the singing of the Gloria, the orations, and the Eucharistic prayer, everyone, priest and faithful, should turn together towards the East, to express their will to participate in the work of worship and of redemption accomplished by Christ,” he continued. “This manner of doing things could opportunely be put into place in cathedrals, where liturgical life must be exemplary.” Continuing his discussion of “active participation,” Cardinal Sarah criticized the “contemporary Western mentality” in which the faithful are to be “constantly busy” and in which the Mass is to be rendered “convivial.”

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