The Blood of Christ in a Champagne Glass -- Liturgical Abuse Between Aesthetics and Plastic Plates
Edit: most of the time, liturgical abuse and bad taste are interlocked.
(Rome) A liturgical blooper happened in the suburbican parish of Palestrina last Holy Thursday.
In the parish of the Assumption of the 50-year-old parish priest Fr Antonino Costa celebrated Holy Thursday liturgy in the garb of a prelate or abbot.On what, exactly was the excavated privilege he appealed to for this, nobody really knows.
Roiate, a village of 750 inhabitants, picturesquely situated southeast of Rome, on the slope of Ernici can look back on an impressive history. Since the 4th century, the town belongs to the Diocese of Palestrina. St. Benedict of Nursia is said to have left here a footprint in the rock on which the parish church is built. Many pilgrims flocked to it earlier times, therefore.Over the centuries, the foot print is "sweating" again. Popular piety saw it as a "bad omen" for the future. A drop of fluid emerging from the rock has been collected and used for the last rites of the dying. In the past century the rock is said to have only "sweat" three times, in connection with the First and Second World War and the earthquake in Irpinia in 1980.
The name of Roiate has its origins in the Lombards, who came in 568 to the country and played a role here - at least some of their noble families - until the High Middle Ages. In 962, Emperor Otto I gave the town rights. The same emperor confirmed in 967 the already ancient territorial dominion of Benedictine Subiaco. But the secular rule of Subiaco was ended in 1753 by Pope Benedict XIV., and Roiate fell to the direct management by the Congregatio boni regiminis of the Roman Curia. All this is not sufficient to explain the "Prelatization" of the pastor.
Roiate was the scene of a bizarre spectacle on Holy Thursday the past few weeks. Don Costa had built a huge canopy and a throne on which he sat during the liturgy. His rise in rank, he expressed by wearing a Rockett and a dalmatic under the chasuble, as is customary for bishops and abbots. All this may be irritating and doubtful, but the real problem it is not.
"The liturgical pastiche connected to it is unacceptable," said Messa in Latino . Don Costa had erected a square table in the sanctuary, where he set up a plasticated Last Supper, in which "plastic" is to be taken literally in the transferred sense. Besides, magnificent candlesticks stood beside the twelve red plastic plates on the table, which was stocked as well with all kinds of fruit filled cups, a plate of sliced bread, a carafe of red wine and two cups [sic] with hosts.
The pastor did not celebrate Missa in Cena Domini at the altar, but at this strange draped table.
"In the colorful Catholic world we had already seen it all. What in the infinite collection of liturgical abuses is still missing, the blood of Christ was served "in champagne glasses," so Messa in Latino .The "prelatized" pastor did not use a chalice for the Eucharist, but a glass of champagne, which he elevated over the plastic plates and the fruit.
On the website of the Diocese of Palestrina the Liturgical Office writes that it was his duty, " to promote a deeper understanding of the immense treasure of liturgical rites and the liturgical magisterium, according to the tradition of the Church and in obedience to the Holy Spirit to promote."
"The pity is that this in-depth unders'tanding' in Roiate seems not yet arrived," said Messa in Latino .