Feast Your Eyes On The Church As It Used To Be
This is a video, courtesy of a recent Father Z’s post, of the proclamation of the Dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. You can enjoy, there, some footage of the great Pius XII.
However, this post is not about the great Pope. This is about a couple of considerations I want to make.
The first: the proclamation had a vast, worldwide echo. This is because the Catholic Church was respected and, actually, feared. The Pope enjoyed boundless prestige with everybody, even among Jews. This was a voice that compleed others to listen.
The second: the pomp and circumstance is brutal. This is not only a Church which is strong, but a Church which has no qualms whatsoever in showing it. From the march of the “600 dignitaries” to the Pope carried among the people at the chants of “viva la Madonna!”, to the elaborate ceremonial and the 36 cardinals who “make obeisance”, all screams glory seen, staged, not just reclaimed.
The third: the Italian Prime Minister, the great Alcide De Gasperi, is mixed among the faithful, literally a quisque de populo. This was, in fact, not about him. The Church made a Prime Minister assist to an important proclamation of Hers standing among the people. Mind, De Gasperi was a very Catholic, humble man, and he might have refused a more prominent collocation. But this does not change the picture: a Church asking everybody to be subject to Christ and answer to Him in the same way, powerful or not.
How strong, how conscious of Her role in the lives of men was that Church! How splendid, holy and, at the same time, reassuring must that Church have appeared to the people in the square, and to everybody else getting to watch the ceremony!
Compare with today, where people more and more disoriented, and clearly looked for a fixed point of orientation in their lives, for stable values and a grounded, meaningful existence, are confronted with a commie nincompoop blathering all the time about social justice, climate, and all sort of stupid grievance against stuff like gossip, consumerism or (this is from yesterday) “always want to excel”, as he refuses to bow in front of the Blessed Sacrament and misses no occasion to belittle Christ, the Blessed Virgin, the Sacrament and – of course – you, the Catholics.
It is good that we have this footage and a lot more beside like this one. It is a very visual, very direct experience of what the Church used to be, and what she will, one day, be again.