Thursday, February 02, 2012
Bishop Ochoas' Mass of Installation
There's no bittersweet tale here to tell. Despite any reservations about musical or liturgical elements that I personally may have had prior and now afterwards, the experience proved as legitimate worship as I've experienced in my life, including a personal "breakthrough" Usus Antiquior Mass at Pittsburgh last June that laid me low before God. I'm not discomfited because I've been around the block, I live and breathe liturgy, worshipping God in ritual is the highest form of human metaphysical expression there is, and the Church founded by Christ upon the shoulders and sore wit of Simon bar Jonah Cephas was very alive and well in the ash groves of Fresno this afternoon.
Off the top- Bp. Ochoa is as engaging a priest, celebrant and shepherd at first glance as I've encountered in 42 years. He was in no way the caricature that has sprung up from the web accounts of the troubling realtionship he's engaged in with a former pastor in El Paso; and frankly, what prejudice I may have allowed into my heart as regards his very essence as a fellow Christian and an ordained apostle in succession to Christ.
For my part, this was a one time offer. I can't afford at may age and with my duties to increase my availability or influence in how the diocese decides its liturgical future, unless asked with serious interest. Our diocese needs to grow up in many ways liturgically. Yet, let no one say that we dishonored or demeaned our responsibilities while in the actual worship moment.
Like Simeon and Mary Magdalen, now and again I have seen the Lord. And should He call this servant to depart in peace, what happened today did not disturb my peace.o
Bp. Ochoa came and greeted the choir prior to the Mass and said "Bear with me, I haven't gotten used to the cadences of the new Missal." Poppycock. He had it down pat.
And better news, take note ye at the PTB "loyal opposition", every congregational response was not only verbatim aligned with the revised translations, but were offered with ease and verve. And Bp. Ochoa's cadence and familiarity with MR3 proved effortless and solemnly rendered.
Can you possibly get over yourselves now? If this can evolve in Fresno. well.....