Participation in Sacramental Liturgy

The corporality of the practice of the sacraments, precisely as language-laden, communal acts of symbolic mediation, is what makes their celebration so essential to knowing and living the Christ proclaimed in Scripture. Participation in sacramental liturgy, as an ecclesial body given over to both the Word in Scripture and symbolic gestures that inscribe that divine word on our persons, delivers us from the human tendency to imagine that there should be no distance, no gap, no otherness between ourselves and the fullness of God. The members of a liturgical assembly bring precisely their bodies to the celebration, their daily action (ethics) as persons engaged in the social and cosmic bodiliness of the human story being written in history. By participating in the traditional body of the church’s sacramental worship, we submit to the mystery of God revealed in the crucified and resurrected Jesus, a God who comes to us in and through the shared bodily medium of our human knowing, siffering, and loving. Thus does the God of Jesus become really present to our lives, evan as that sacramental ecclesial presence always recedes in its coming, sending us in the Spirit to discover the Word as living and active in us and our world.

Bruce T. Morrill, “Building on Chauvet’s Work: An Overview”, in Sacraments: Revelation of the Humanity of God: Engaging the Fundamental Theology of Louis-Marie Chauvet, eds. Philippe Bordeyne and Bruce T. Morrill (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2008), p. xxi-xxii. ISBN: 978-0-8146-6218-2.

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