Friday, 18 December 2020

No Mass for you on Christmas, but you can stand in line for the Holy Eucharist as if you were lining up to see Santa

Cardinal Collins has issued an update and letter of instruction to all priests in the Archdiocese of Toronto pertaining to Christmas and the situation with the diktats of Premier Douglas Ford. The Cardinal indicates that over this past week he has "reached out directly to Premier Ford with a request to open all of our parishes at 30% capacity for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day." He told the Premier that not one case of the China Virus "has been directly traced back to the church as the origin of transmission." The request was denied by Premier Ford.

I suppose that is something and he should be commended. and

Collins acknowledges that lawsuits by businesses and other places of worship, Pastor Peter Youngren's actions as reported previously on this blog, being the prime case. It will be interesting later today when the decision of the court on the Youngren suit is issued. I am not optimistic given the history of our judges in these matters but one never knows. The equality rights provisions of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms of the Constitution of Canada would seem to be pretty clear that if a couple of hundred can be at Costco, ten in a church is not reasonable or equitable. If Youngren is successful will the Cardinal reopen the churches to 30% capacity and public Mass as the courts might rule or will he bow to the diktats of the Premier and the "virtuous" public health officials to remain in their good books.

The Cardinal recognizes "the essential nature of the Eucharist, the source and summit of our spiritual strength as Christians, and the importance of Christmas." He continues that he wants "to provide an opportunity for the faithful who wish to do so, to spend time, even if briefly, at their local parish and, where possible, to receive Holy Communion," yet there will be no public Mass on Christmas, at least not for you. "Of course, all priests are offering Mass for the people every day, which is a basic dimension of the priestly office," says Collins, in a what is nothing more than a gross example of clericalism. The priest has his Mass but there is "no Mass for you!"

The "Four Ends of Mass" are adoration, thanksgiving, atonement and petition. Nowhere in this age old definition of the Holy Sacrifice is receiving Holy Communion mentioned. It is attending Mass that is our duty to God and our need. Holy Communion, as the Cardinal explains, can always be given outside the Holy Mass, today, tomorrow on  Christmas Eve or the Day. Is this not happening? Are people not requesting or are priests denying Holy Communion? 

So rather than give God his due, the Cardinal is telling us that even a layman can clericalise and lead the Holy Communion Service and get you in and out in "7 or 8 minutes." Just about the same time it takes to pick up a Big Mac and fries at McDonald's.

This is nothing more than a complete and utter abandonment of duty as an Apostle of Jesus Christ, a cowardly betrayal of the faithful and an example of the worst kind of assembly theology and clericalist arrogance. It as if they don't believe that the Mass has any worshipful or efficacious value outside of receiving Holy Communion. 


Irenaeus said...

Towards the end of the letter, we read the Cardinal's encouragement of the faithful to follow the Province's direction not to travel outside of their own region for public Mass.

Yet, it was his own actions that necessitated the faithful to travel long distances for public Masses en masse. If there were public Masses here, the faithful wouldn't feel the need to go against the wishes of the Province.


Phineas said...

Unfortunately, the time to stand up to Doug Ford was when the order to reduce attendance to 10 people was announced. His Eminence capitulated and actually went one better. So, what did he think would happen when he went to "ask permission"? Naturally, from Ford's perspective he's now been put into a corner, so he said no.

"Better to ask for forgiveness instead of permission" as the saying goes. His Eminence simply should have not acceded to the (unscientific and irrational) order to reduce to 10 and then seen how it played out. I suspect Ford wouldn't have thrown down the gauntlet.

Anonymous said...

If the government can get away with this, do you think the churches will ever reopen to full capacity? COVID hysteria will result in bishops actually closing parishes on the basis the buildings are no longer needed! Just watch and see.