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Remember the joy that comes from ministry?

By Jessie Bazan, communication senior   

World-renown liturgist Rev. John F. Baldovin, S.J., visited Marquette for the first time on Wednesday. As he approached the podium to speak, Father Baldovin gazed out at the 350 plus students, staff and community members scattered about the Church of the Gesu.

Quite the crowd for a mid-week theology lecture.

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council, the university community earnestly gathered for Father Baldovin's lecture, "Renewing the Liturgy, Revitalizing the Church: The Vatican II Reforms at 50."

The most important change stemming from the Second Vatican Council, Father Baldovin said, is that the liturgy can now be celebrated in languages we understand. With this newfound understanding comes hefty responsibility. The post-Vatican II liturgy "is not a solo sport" stresses Father Baldovin, professor at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry and current Ignatius Loyola Chair at Fordham University. It requires active participation and dialogue from all parties. Membership in the assembly is critical, according to Father Baldovin. As the worshipping body, the assembly is to take on what Father Baldovin called a "corporate identity." He said this new identity a significant shift from pre-Vatican II days requires that people shed some individualism in order to let God mold His Church into the Body of Christ.

His advice to student liturgical ministers was especially pertinent. Practice reverence. Remind yourselves of the reasons you've taken on such important ministries. Ask: "What does it mean for me to receive Holy Communion?" Remind yourself of the joy that comes in ministry. Father Baldovin reminded the students: "We should be grateful we can be here and experience this."

Fifty years ago, the Catholic Church experienced a major event that re-energized the faithful and deeply influenced their relationship to the wider world. As a Catholic, Jesuit university, Marquette is committed to exploring the Council's meaning today and its challenges for the future. Father Baldovin offered the first lecture in a series of events celebrating Vatican II on campus. For an in-depth look at the way Vatican II reforms changed worship on campus, check out the Marquette Magazine summer 2013 cover story.


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