Monday, January 15, 2007

Sacred Signs by Romano Guardini: A Blogpost Introduction

A short time after I discovered the beauty of the liturgy as celebrated at Assumption Grotto, I was discussing it with Fr. Titus, one of several Priests of Opus Angelorum who has been in metro Detroit. With my new found interest in the liturgy, he encouraged me to read the writings of Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI. In particular he directed me to Spirit of the Liturgy (Ratzinger).

However, there was another author he encouraged me to read - one, I had never heard of. His name was Romano Guardini (1885-1968). Those who have read Ratzinger's Spirit of the Liturgy may recall that his book was based on the book of the same name - Spirit of the Liturgy (Guardini). Cardinal Ratzinger noted in his introduction:
"My purpose here is to assist this renewal of understanding of the Liturgy. Its basic intentions coincide with what Guardini wanted to achieve. The only difference is that I have had to translate what Guardini did at the end of the First World War, in a totally different historical situation, into the context of our present-day questions, hopes and dangers. Like Guardini, I am not attempting to involve myself with scholarly discussion and research. I am simply offering an aid to the understanding of the faith and to the right way to give the faith its central form of expression in the Liturgy."

While some may think of Spirit of the Liturgy when they hear the name Guardini he had many writings, among which is a very short and spiritually delightful booklet called, Sacred Signs. It was originally written and copyrighted in 1956. This book is not readily available. There was one used copy at a third part seller via, but I just snatched it. I had checked before only to come up empty.

However, it happens to be online in many places. One such place is the EWTN library.

In the coming weeks, and in between other posts, I will be bringing to you exerpts from Sacred Signs. Hopefully, you will find it as interesting as I have.