Pope highlights liturgical excellence during recent trip to France

Pope highlights liturgical excellence during recent trip to France

By John Thavis
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — One of the subthemes of Pope Benedict XVI’s recent visit to France was liturgical excellence, a lifelong concern of the German pontiff that has carried over into his papal agenda.

The pope didn’t zero in on specific liturgical problems in France, but he repeatedly reminded his audiences in Paris and Lourdes why quality matters when it comes to worship.

Speaking Sept. 12 in Notre Dame Cathedral, which he called “a living hymn of stone and light,” the pope used the setting to illustrate the Christian community’s age-old effort to reach for splendor when praying to God.

“Certainly, the beauty of our celebrations can never be sufficiently cultivated, fostered and refined, for nothing can be too beautiful for God, who is himself infinite beauty,” he said.But he said church liturgies should be carried out in order to offer, as closely as possible, “a foretaste” of eternal salvation …        

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