Jesuit On Liturgy

Ever Old and Ever New

A Review of Martin Mosebach's The Heresy of Formlessness: The Roman Liturgy and Its Enemy

Rev. Brian Van Hove, S.J.
An excerpt.

Nearly everywhere, the Mass today fails to unite Latin Rite Catholics, even juridically. Liturgical law is rejected, ignored or paid mere lip service by the modernizers (whom Mosebach calls "late Catholic Puritans", p. 135) who always know more than the Church. Some years ago, reformers replaced the older formalism and legalism with the formlessness decried by Mosebach in his book's title. Formlessness is the enemy. (For an articulate discussion of what he means by the contemporary rebellion against "form", see pp. 104-106; 147). A denial of beauty produces formlessness.

Formlessness is a heresy when it refuses certain revealed truths. They are mediated by material, concrete signs and symbols which are in themselves beautiful. In a word, Mosebach is preaching sacramentalism. Loss of form means loss of content!

Thanks and a tip of the beret to Joseph Fromm, at Good Jesuit, Bad Jesuit.

de Brantigny


Joseph Fromm said...

I never could put into words, but instantly recogized formlessness as so as it was explained.


de Brantigny said...

In an effort to bring the parish into a closer relationship during the Mass they streamlined the Mass. While I do not believe that the Novus Ordo is invalid, it has led to many abuses, ie, clown Masses, puppet masses, liturgical dancing... and it has led the faithful through the efforts (conivance)of liberal priests to stop teaching what the magisterium teaches, and to teach their own opinion, ie, Fr Phleger. Seriousely I have heard Priests say things during a homily which could only have come out of their ass.

While the form of the latin Mass was tediuos for young, and not understood, the Novus Ordo says to the youth,(and the Old) "This is a performance if you get bored it is OK if you talk to keep yoursleves occupied." "There is nothing wrong with dressing like a beach bum for Mass, just come as you are." " It is OK if the little ones run around in the Mass". That is where the heresy lies.