Saturday, January 07, 2006

Visit of the Three Kings

-an old Chinese Catholic print


Holy Family

World's smallest altar

Catholic student meditation room in Nuremburg makes attempt on "world's smallest altar" record. Ironically, their menorah is bigger.

Entering the strange world of the Neo-Catechumenal Way.

When a "new movement" starts to behave like a sect. New movements themselves are often means to avoid the sacrifices required for the traditional religious life. Sects are just dangerous.
More background here in extracts from a book by a Passionist priest.

This is their newly opened international retreat centre, Domus Galilaeae on the Mount of the Beatitudes in Israel.

The entrance

The Fathers of the Second Vatican Council wanted a rediscovery of the Early Church Fathers; they cannot have expected a group that went further back in time and sought a reconciliation between the Church and the synagogues.

The whole building out of its way to prove that this group is in some sense a reversion to Judaism. In their own words, "a bridge to the whole Jewish tradition." There is a proliferation of Jewish symbols and the relative lack of Christian symbols.

"Moreover, every Saturday a procession of unusual visitors enlivens the hillside of Korazym. They are Orthodox Jews who knock at the door of the "Domus Galilaeae." Next to the entrance they find a "bimah," a pulpit, as in the synagogues; on the cloister side there is Moses' decalogue carved in Hebrew in marble; at the center of the library there's a Torah from the 15th century; after the visit there are farewells, with the singing of the "Shemah Israel," and they leave emotionally moved."

This is the main hall laid out for a "Banquet Mass".
The Vatican has every right to continuing concern about this group
And to prove the point in the main chapel, a dinner table. Seating on all four sides, likely Communion sitting down and not by a priest but your neighbour.

Viewed from a distance during construction

Their tower called "the Chalice" is illuminated at night.

Excellent discussion on the Way here.

The square "banqueting" altar decorated with a Jewish menorah (and not a Cross!) seems universal in the Neo-Catechumenal Way. Here in America in 1997

In France

In Australia