The celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council continue with a new stage: the Symposium Sacrosanctum Concilium. Gratitude for and Commitment to a Great Ecclesial Movement, organized by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, in collaboration with the Pontifical Lateran University.
The Symposium, which will take place next week at the Lateran athenaeum, will celebrate the 50 years of the Conciliar Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, promulgated by Pope Paul VI on Dec. 4, 1963.
“In order to speak of the liturgical renewal of Vatican II, the renewal must be situated in the ensemble of the Council itself and one must recall, to this end, that Vatican II burst forth as a new Pentecost, a spring that opened hope of new life and a fecund interior transformation, in keeping with the divine purpose,” said Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, in a message read today at the Holy See Press Office by Monsignor Juan Miguel Ferrer Grenesche, under-secretary of the same Congregation.
“To know well, to reread, to reflect and interpret faithfully this Council, in the unity and integrity of its wholeness, is an imperative task for the Church today,” continued the cardinal.
In regard to the liturgical renewal desired by the Council, Cardinal Cañizares said that it is a process that “tends to the most aware, participatory and active celebration of Christ’s paschal mystery, with the related fruits of holiness, communion and mission.”
Beginning, then, with the subject of the Liturgy, “the whole Council put itself explicitly under the light of God’s primacy and it indicated it at the same time as the sure point of orientation of the path to follow for the future,” added the Cardinal.
Archbishop Arthur Roche, secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, recalled how the subject of the liturgy through Sacrosanctum Concilium is inserted “in the great perspectives of Vatican II: to make Christian life grow more every day among the faithful, to adapt better, to the exigencies of the present time, those institutions that are subject to changes, to foster what can contribute to the union of all believers in Christ, to reinvigorate what helps to call all into the heart of the Church (cf. SC 1).”
Moreover, the 50 years of Sacrosanctum Concilium “invite also to do an examination of conscience,” stressed Archbishop Roche. From the mystery of the Church “in prayer”, the incessant call resounds to evangelization and witness, following the example of the primitive community of the Acts of the Apostles (2:42-47).”
The prelate then announced that the Symposium will be articulated with moments of prayer: the Liturgy of the Hours (Terce on Tuesday and Lauds on Thursday), Eucharistic Adoration (Thursday) and the Eucharist (Wednesday and Thursday).
Planned are the concert Voices of the Christian East on Tuesday and the exhibition Liturgical Art in the Papal Sacristy after Vatican II, which will open before the afternoon session on Wednesday.
The Symposium is addressed in particular to those in charge of the Liturgical Commissions, to centers of Theological and Pastoral Study, and to all who work in liturgy. It will end on Wednesday, February 19, with the participants’ meeting with the Pope, in the course of the General Audience.
“The hope is to be able to offer in the days of the Symposium, through listening, dialogue and common prayer, an experience of communion filled with a pleasing memory and prophetic commitment,” concluded Archbishop Roche.
A second intervention that arrived in writing was that of Monsignor Enrico Dal Covolo, Rector of the Pontifical Lateran University. In the prelate’s absence, the message was read by Philippe Chenaux, professor of the History of the Modern and Contemporary Church in the same athenaeum.
As explained by Monsignor Dal Covolo, the Symposium, from its title, expresses “gratitude,” in particular to the Conciliar Fathers that “fifty years ago, allowing themselves to be guided by the powerful breath of the Holy Spirit, gave new energy to the Holy Church of God.”
The Symposium will then reflect on “ecclesial communion,” in as much as, Romano Guardini already affirmed, “the liturgy does not say ‘I” but “we”: it is not the work of the individual but of the totality of the faithful.”
Moreover, already in the 3rdcentury, Saint Cyprian explained that “our prayer is public and communitarian and when we pray we do not pray for one alone but for all the people, because we are one with all the people.”
This is why Christians, even when they pray in solitude, do not say “My Father” but “Our Father,” noted the Rector.
For further reflection, the program and registration go to: http://www.pul.it/2014/01/sacrosanctum-concilium/