Words to remember

"Never doubt in the darkness what you believed in the light."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Populus Dei

In looking through the news on New Advent I came across this article Councilwoman Criticized for Catholic Remarks It's not entirely surprising, and the rhetoric is tired and unoriginal. The one positive bit of news is that the councilperson in question did abstain from voting on the issue, which is to her credit. I wonder, though, how much longer such people will show such restraint. Remember, she considers it an affront to her own dignity, but to that of all "womankind"; one can imagine it wouldn't take very much to nudge her to act against the Church in support of this "womankind".

Well, now that I've started off being oh-so-cheerful today, on to the meat and potatoes! Whatever happened to the concept of the people of God, Israel? What prompted this thought was the lyrics of the Advent hymn "Veni, veni, Emmanuel". The lyrics are as follows:
Veni, O sapientia
Quae hic disponis omnia
Veni, viam prudentiae
Ut doceas et gloriae
R: Gaude, gaude, Emmanuel
Nascetur pro te, Israel

Veni, veni Adonai
Qui populo in Sinai
Legem dedisti vertice
In maiestate gloriae

Veni, o Iesse virgula
Ex hostis tuos ungula
De spectu tuos tartari
Educ et antro barathri

Veni, Clavis Davidica
Regna reclude caelica
Fac iter tutum superum
Et claude vias inferum

Veni, veni, O Oriens
Solare nos adveniens
Noctis depelle nebulas
Dirasque noctis tenebras

Veni, veni, Rex Gentium
Veni, Redemptor omnium
Ut salvas tuos famulos
Peccati sibi conscios

Veni, veni, Emmanuel
Captivum solve Israel!
Qui gemit in exsilio,
Privatus Dei filio!
Gaude, gaude, Emmanuel
Nascetur pro te, Israel.

While I will concede that it is possibly that I simply haven't heard it, I ask: Why don't we talk like this any more? There's a wealth of symbolism in the Church we have simply done away with. The Church as Israel is a theme that really is worth so much exploration, but it seems that references to that are few and far between. Maybe I just haven't been paying attention.

At the same time, we've lost the practice of seeing ourselves as Roman. Not that we are in any geographical or political sense. I can recall that, after the death of John Paul the Great, in one prayer a cardinal (it might have been then-Cardinal Ratzinger, I can't recall now) implored Mary, the protector of the Roman People. St. Patrick once remarked "If you be Christians, then you are Romans."

I'm jus' askin'.

No comments: