Monday, November 30, 2009

A Review: The Liturgical Year

The Liturgical Year: The Spiraling Adventure of the Spiritual Life by Joan Chittister is the full name of this book. I was so excited to receive this book to review. I am fascinated with the Catholic religion. I love all the ceremony surrounding and including their regular worship. I believe that God is not only in the plain and mundane, but He should also be in high places. He should be revered, celebrated with a feast, celebrated with a fast. He should also be a part of the day to day. We are created in His image which means He will have as many facets as we do, as many different subtexts as our lives can hold.
However, this book did not meet my expectations. This book was more of a philosophy book. Instead of going into detail about the different customs in detail, she merely discusses each tradition. The book I was expecting has probably already been written...I'm checking into the footnoted sources.
Reading this book was a learning experience though, I loved her point that years are not ever alike, they are not merely a calendar function. The years we live are each unique from one another and shape us into the people God means for us to be. She also eludes to the fact that if we live each year liturgically, as Christ did, we will become more Christlike. The things done as rote do 'settle in' to our psyches and make us more like He was. I am a firm believer in this opinion. Habits may seem trite as first, but they do shape us. Most Christians go to church on Sunday. If they don't, it says more about church today than it does about rituals. I guarantee that if one has spent a lifetime attending church on Sunday, that person is thinking about God on Sunday. Maybe in a rebellious way, maybe in a worshipping way-but the habit has done what it was supposed to, created a remembrance.
I flirt with the idea of converting to Catholicism, just to learn the rituals, customs, etc. And so if I see someone from church in the liquor store, neither of us has to feel guilty about it.

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