Sunday, May 15, 2005

Gammarelli Digest

I don't usually show this side of things, but one of my specialties is the bells-and-smells of ritual -- I am from Philadelphia, so this is to be expected.

A couple notes on B16 and his vesture choices:

  • If one looks at the Installation Mass, the Lateran Mass and this morning's ordination, the Pope has worn the same miter -- a gold one adorned with shells, with a sitting figure embroidered at the center of the base. He seems to have a real attachment to it, evidenced by his wearing it long before his election when he ordained Josef Clemens a bishop. It is the matching miter for the chasuble worn at the Installations at St. Peter's and St. John Lateran. But the best part about it is that it still has Cardinal Ratzinger's coat of arms -- red galero and all -- at the base of the flaps on the back.
  • At the 1965 close of the Council, Paul VI elected to carry a unique crozier emphasizing his role as the universal pastor of the church. His successors have followed suit -- John Paul being given a new one by Lello Scorzelli (the original craftsman) in 1990 on his 70th birthday. Interestingly enough, Benedict XVI has returned to use the first pastorale of Paul VI. It's distinctive by its bronze tone and larger crucifix.
  • The new-style pallium is really something to consider. Don't be surprised if, maybe not this June 29 but next, the pope sends it as a gift to all the metropolitans of the world -- he wants it to be a more prominent symbol of communion with the Holy See, hoping that its wearers will take its meaning to heart.
  • It's been a month, but the pope's coat of arms is still not on the sash fringes yet. It may not ever get there, he has likely decided to lay that aside. Whether we'll again see the straight white cassock (no shoulder cape) he test-ballooned after installation is anyone's guess.

And, lastly, before anyone gets anachronistic hopes up, I don't think we'll be seeing fiddle-backs or excess lace anytime soon -- the new pallium dates to the days when the Gothic chasuble was the norm; it had to be "adapted" (some would say profaned) to better mesh with the Roman model.

Liturgical Gothic... saucy. Hey, it's a ressourcement church.



Blogger Jeff said...


Thank for the last three posts. It's nice to a few bits and flashes of you that depart a bit from the style and substance of the usual post. Not that that usual is not enjoyable, it's what drew me. But--thanks.

Jeffrey Kantor

15/5/05 16:29  

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