1. Hi Simcha, here is a link to an article that I thought expressed sanely the concerns of the more high-Church types (not traddies exactly, but beauty will save the world, smelly-belly types) http://www.chantcafe.com/2013/03/is-there-rupture-between-benedict-and.html?m=1 I especially like the part near the end, where he says, ” … conforming to the expectations of the ceremonial life of the Pope of Rome… may (and arguably should) be personally uncomfortable, agonizing and even annoying. It is also a reminder of Our Lord’s words to Peter in John 21.18, Truly, truly I say to you, when you were young, you girded yourself and walked where you would: but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish to go. Papal conformity in this way avoids individual holders of the office arbitrarily and eccentrically undertaking words, gestures and rites which may be interpreted in a way far from their actual intention. Far from glorifying the papal office overmuch, it actually conforms the man to the office and holds him accountable to it and not his own preferences. It causes him to disappear behind the office and become Peter and less himself.

    It is also important to note that in the Church’s life, there has always been a tension between visible exuberance and simple austerity. In the Middle Ages, Bernard of Clairvaux with his Spartan Cistercian simplicity arrested Europe just as much as Abbot Suger with his soaring riots of color and glass and precious materiel. Yet Bernard and Suger belonged to the same Church. The same Church produced the rococo churches of Austria and the mud huts of the Tamanrasset. The tension between the two must not be capitalized upon by ideologues who see only one or the other as the true Gospel: they must live in communion with each other.”
    Sorry to go on and on, I know you are busy, and I appreciate your fun, well-crafted and insightful work!

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