A nice posting has come up on Anglican Patrimony – The English Use by Fr Matthew Venuti of the US Ordinariate. My own experience as a cleric was much different from theirs, having been ordained to the diaconate at one of the spikiest and most baroque seminaries of the RC Church – Gricigliano. The picture above is of my own chapel, fundamentally English with a few later French influences.
The conversation is courteous. Fr Bartus has written an article in the past about my preference for the Sarum Use, and was quite hurtful in places. I am happy that an Ordinariate priest in America is gently pushing for more “medieval” English ways.
I am quite puzzled to read that the Eastern liturgies are a key to understanding some of the less clear rubrics. It is true that we use a rood screen (when we have one) and there is a procession with the Oblata. I see the roots of the Sarum liturgy over this side of the English Channel, and they are apparent in many medieval churches in our Norman countryside and in the city of Rouen. The Norman liturgical tradition extended all the way through the Evreux area to Paris, over the other side of the Seine to the Pays d’Auge and the Bessin. The essential of the Sarum Use was taken over to England with the Norman Conquest. Our English culture is Norman more than anything else, with a smattering with what is vaguely Germanic in us.
This gives some idea of a French cathedral liturgy in the early nineteenth century, still in a very eighteenth-century style.
Sarum in Salisbury Cathedral would have been little different, except for the baroque trappings. There may have been some influence from the Orient, but my guess is that most of it is native to our Franco-Roman culture.
Fr Venuti takes inspiration in this little altar in the guest house chapel of Ealing Abbey. So did I to some extent, as my chapel shows, especially for the exact appearance of a hanging pyx. Downside Abbey in England is also very English.
I wish this Ordinariate community every blessing in this work of fostering the English (Norman) tradition.