Monday, October 10, 2005

Bells, incense and good liturgy

I came across the JoeCatholic blog and he was writing about the lack of bells at the Consecration. He makes an excellent point, how we need something to signify the miracle that is taking place. And it led me to thinking about our parish and how I wish the liturgy would include the bells, the incense and whatever might appeal to our senses other than sight. I usually bend down and whisper to my blind son what is happening at the Consecration, but I wish for his sake we hadn't stripped our liturgies of all the sensual (appealing to the senses) imagery.

We worship with our bodies, this is the purpose for which they are made. We genuflect, we listen, we see, we smell and we taste. How can the super-sensitive, don't-want-to-offend-anyone type overlook such an obvious shortcoming?


Justin said...

Excellent point. It would be wonderful for your son to be able to associate the smell of incense with reverence and holiness - which is what I feel every time I smell the aroma. This is aside from all the arguments about the fact that the Church has used these elements of the Liturgy for 2,000 years. I wish we could go back to trusting in Tradition instead of trying to "keep pace" with the times.

Todd said...

The bells have a difficult history. I'd hope that every Catholic have an appreciation for the entire Eucharistic prayer, an awareness of what the priest prays and what the people sing.

If a parish were using bells, I'd wonder why not use the main tower bells. Why not tell the whole world?

Agreed with you on incense, though, but few have any idea the outcry the use of smells provokes in the respiratorily challenged. My parish once acquired non-allergenic incense, but the complaints maintained themselves. Why? Burning charcoal irritates the sinuses more than good incense. If there was a way to bake hot stones and use these instead of charcoal, I think we'd be on to something.