All posts tagged: liturgicalformation

Formed in Wonder, Love, and Praise

If you were to survey members of a Roman Catholic congregation as they exited the church after Sunday Mass by asking what facet of the celebration made the greatest impact on them that day for good or for ill, odds are high that many of those surveyed (if not most) would name the liturgical music in their response. More than any other element (with perhaps the exception of preaching and the architecture of the church itself), liturgical music has the greatest capacity to shape how we celebrate the Sunday Mass week in and week out, season after season, year after year. Ask those same congregation members if they can remember the readings or a central point from the homily and it’s likely you won’t get an answer; ask them if they can remember one of the hymns and it’s likely you’ll get a serenade. Many parish communities view the music of its liturgies as a hallmark of their identity; many people seeking parish communities often site music as one of the reasons for or against …

Mission of Charity: Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in Northeast England

In 1933, Maria Montessori published a little-known book entitled, simply, The Mass Explained to Children. This wonderful, slim volume argues that the Mass is perfect for children. Note well: Montessori is describing the Tridentine rite, which might seem utterly impenetrable to young minds. But, she argues, a child’s sensibilities tend toward awe and wonder, and the Mass could elicit these very responses, if the child was brought to an understanding of its meaning. “Our Lord,” Montessori wrote, “perceived in children something that the adult did not perceive two thousand years ago and does not perceive today. Yet the Gospel says plainly that many mysteries shall be revealed to these little ones…We must always keep this fact in mind, so that we may be prepared not only to offer children the noblest teaching, but to offer it in a worthy form”.[1] Twenty years later, Sofia Cavalletti began to discover the perception Montessori described, and eventually published her observations in The Religious Potential of the Child (1979). Together with Gianna Gobbi, an educator who trained and worked …