Well, as many people who know me know I don’t winter well. Its been nearly a month since my last post and I wish I could say I’ve been in deep contemplation of this next post.
Instead I’ve been watching the whole box set of the west wing, pretty much back to back, and drinking for two…
Winter often makes me melancholic about everything, and I start noticing more the things that really irk me. Like laypeople cleansing the vessels after mass.
I had a brief conversation with the culprit and I’m not sure he knew the difference between a Eucharistic minister and an extraordinary Eucharistic minister… Then he flatly stated that it was allowed by cannon law, which since nobody carries a book of cannon law around with them is rather tricky to disprove. Anyway I later found out, via Wikipedia of all places that it is explicitly disallowed by the instructions to the missal.
The other worrying thing about this conversation with this extraordinary Eucharistic minister was that he took a certain glee in saying that he could hold a Eucharistic service so of course he could cleanse the vessels. In a country with as many priests as ours Eucharistic services shouldn’t be happening at all. In fact in a country with as many priests as ours perhaps we shouldn’t have extraordinary Eucharistic ministers at all, offer communion under one kind, and while we are at it bring back communion rails…
Then I was reminded that Ushaw was closing despite them never changing their approach to teaching. The definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over and each time expecting a different outcome. This is what Ushaw suffered from, it blamed its emptiness on the ‘vocations crisis’ then never changed anything it was doing.
Rather than pivot towards orthodoxy it decided to pivot towards Anglicanism. Rather than look to successful institutions for ideas, like say the Dominicans or dare I say it the LMS, they looked at the sky and asked God why this was befalling them.
Ushaw was well known as a place which crushed vocations, if you got through it was because of a tenacious survival instinct and the ability to shut up and keep your head down. Now because God has been so ungenerous in sending liberal vocations a venerable institution with a beautiful chapel is closing down.
Finally, on a more positive note a friend told me after mass last week that a woman (about my age) knelt to receive communion! I was so happy and frankly that is so incredibly attractive, already I would really like to meet her and I’ve never even seen her.