Paul VI and the spirit of the sixties from his personal secretary...
"This reform attained persons and ceremonies. The ancient choreography of the military corps: the Noble and the Palatine Guards disappeared. The Papal Court was drastically remodelled.
The canopy, feather fans and silver trumpets were no more.
When some Oriental bishops remarked that a golden cross decorating the papal slippers was a lack of respect for the Cross, he gave orders for it to be removed immediately.
He wanted to abolish the special chair [sedia gestatoria] which carried him on four men's shoulders, but no solution was found to allow the pilgrims to see the Pope easily.
The liturgical vestments lost their lace and everything else judged redundant, towards a religious sobriety and dignity.
To encourage such renewal he was the first to give example: he replaced the golden chain of the pectoral cross with a silk cord, and never wore a golden watch or gold-rimmed glasses, and never used a golden fountain pen."
-Paul VI The Man and His Message, by Archbishop Pasquale Macchi, 2007, pp. 65-66
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
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The wholesale hatchet-job on the Papal Court and all the beautiful ornamentation was almost criminal.
Paul VI had (as the Novus Ordo attests), not only no class, but no sense of liturgical taste or sensibility. John Paul II was worse, but Paul VI got the wrecking ball rolling in the first place.
Bits and pieces are coming back slowly, for which we are all much the richer.
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