Learning from liturgical disruption – have your say

Masses cancelled, funerals with just ten people, marriages postponed, sacramental programmes delayed, no shared chalice, and a new way to exchange the sign of peace, touchless ashes on Ash Wednesday, no ashes on Ash Wednesday are a few of the now-familiar marks of what has been termed a Liturgical Disruption.

Add to them, the lengths some have gone to, to continue some form of liturgical practice, and then there is the absence of those who have yet to return to Church.

“Globally, the coronavirus is probably the most disruptive event impacting liturgy since the Second Vatican Council”, Dr Joe Grayland told CathNews.

“In New Zealand and around the globe we were unable to celebrate the end of Lent, Holy Week, the Paschal Triduum, and most of Eastertide and it continues to disrupt”.

The impact of Vatican II has lasted fifty years, but in some places, it took up to ten years to implement. Even the recent translation of the liturgy into English was implemented over a period of years, he said.

“By comparison, the global impact of the Coronavirus was almost instant”, he said.

“It only takes one community outbreak somewhere in New Zealand and the lifetime faith practises of many are once again disrupted”.

Click to take part in Learning from liturgical disruption survey.

Grayland, a Doctor of Theology in liturgical science, says liturgical disruption came as part of the experience of social disruption and physical distancing and he is looking to see if there is anything the Church can learn from it.

He is inviting readers of CathNews in New Zealand and around the world to complete a survey which is part of his ongoing research into New Zealand’s liturgical life.

The survey asks questions about your experience during levels three and four; when either church attendance numbers were severely restricted or people were prevented from going to Church.

He is keen for you to assess the impacts of the liturgical disruption on your parish and your personal prayer life during, and since then.

The survey covers topics such as online worship and your experience of it, the impact of restrictions on church services, diocesan and parish communication during the lockdown and ensuing disruption the impact on parish life and how you might see the future.

It asks whether you think the decision to close churches was the right one and asks if you think the contemporary parish structure can withstand this change.

Grayland says all responses are anonymous and the survey should take between 8 and 10 minutes to complete.

It can be taken either on a computer or mobile device.

Click to take part in Learning from liturgical disruption survey.


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