‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light’ (Mt. 11:28-30). ⧾
These are assuredly among the most consoling and challenging words found in Sacred Scripture. With them Our Lord invites us to come to Him in our struggles and trials and to conform ourselves to His Most Sacred Heart. This simple invitation tells us everything we need to know about God and about ourselves. Our Lord reveals Himself as a Teacher whom we can imitate; and by consequence, that we are disciples who can indeed learn from Him and become godly in both our thoughts and actions. This divine initiative, since it comes from God, affirms our human nature for at the natural level, it is necessary for us to learn skills to survive and prosper. This is a self-evident truth. At the supernatural level, that is to say, in relation to the soul or what we commonly term the spiritual life, the very same is true. We learn to pray, to practice the virtues; we grow in the spiritual life just as we endeavour to grow and mature intellectually and morally. It is possible for us to have the mind of Christ (Cf. 1Cor. 2:16).
To live is to change and to be perfect is to have changed often. These are the wise words of St John Henry Newman, whose own spiritual journey to the fullness of the truth and to the Heart of Jesus was like our own spiritual journey, a passage from shadows and images to the truth. Where do we learn these saving truths? Principally at the celebration of the sacred liturgy which is both the school and feast of faith. The liturgy is rightly to be seen as the beginning of all things. The state of the liturgy tells you the state of the Church; and the restrictions imposed on our worship by the current state of affairs tell us something about the Church’s ability to function freely and effectively in our day. Nevertheless, we are witnessing and experiencing a singular phenomenon, at least from my perspective. Record numbers are attending the Traditional Latin Mass. Since the churches have reopened, the average attendance at our Friday evening Traditional Mass has been about one hundred people. The beauty and stability of the Traditional Roman Rite are a sane alternative to all of the directives, strictures and cautions imposed by what is fast developing into a new rite of sorts; what I term ‘the rite of Covid’, or ritus covidensis for those who wish to give it a more dignified sounding name.