All posts tagged: Center for Liturgy

Theology and Catechesis: Renewing Method

In less than three weeks, I’ll be back in the classroom teaching an intensive course introducing over forty students to a fundamental theology for catechesis. Most of my students will be parish ministers, high school teachers, or those involved in campus ministry at a secondary or collegiate level. Each day of the class on our blog, I will offer a series of reflections drawn from our syllabus to invite readers to follow along virtually. Yet, before launching into this virtual syllabus, I wanted to offer a defense of the course’s title: Introduction to Catechetical Theology. Often enough in the academy, catechesis is preceded by the term “mere.” While the theologian advances knowledge and is engaged in critical inquiry, the catechist is “merely” teaching the particulars of Christian faith. Such an assumption fails to grasp that the catechist is performing an act of theological interpretation in every moment of teaching. As Augustine notes in his De doctrina christiana (On Teaching Christianity), the first act of the teacher is not presentation but interpretation. A catechist without a theological …

Liturgy and the New Evangelization: 2016 Symposium

In his recently translated book, Mystery and Sacrament of Love: A Theology of Marriage and the Family for the New Evangelization, Marc Cardinal Ouellet writes: In a postmodern context, we have to justify the ‘why’ of the sacraments; it is not enough to explain their ‘how’ within a universe of meaning that no longer exists (2). At the Institute for Church Life, Cardinal Ouellet’s concern about the loss of the sacramental imagination is the central one for renewing liturgical prayer today. Liturgical theology, formation, and catechesis cannot simply proclaim again and again that liturgy is the source and summit of Christian life. We cannot yell at the top of our lungs that sacraments are important. We cannot return to a golden age of the early Church, of medieval Catholicism, of the liturgical movement, of right after Vatican II. At this moment in history, the very ground of meaning upon which the sacraments stands is up for grabs. We have to develop a liturgical and sacramental apologetics that invites women and men, lay and ordained, to see this meaning anew. …