Altar and Home was a publication of Conception Abbey in the 1930s-1960s focusing on the liturgy and its relationship with the home. This series begins anew that same vision, on a smaller scale, of promoting both Altar and Home.
In the earliest days of the Church, the family home was the usual setting for the communal celebration of the Eucharistic liturgy. The faithful gathered as Church in the home of a neighbor, united in the Body of Christ by the bonds that had been formed through baptism. Strengthened by the sacraments and by the zeal of her members, the Church flourished and grew. Eventually, most family homes were too small to accommodate the large numbers participating in the saving mysteries of the Faith. It became necessary to use—or build—larger spaces for the celebration of the Mass. These Christian temples, or churches, remain the ordinary locale for the altar of Christian sacrifice.
Those historical origins make plain the fundamental unity between the Christian home and the Christian altar. The reality of communion in Christ remains the same today as it was then, but contemporary social and cultural conditions raise the urgent necessity to reaffirm this intimate connection between Altar and Home.
Good Catholic homes must cultivate among families a particular love and devotion for the altar, and for the communion which it brings about. Each Christian must recognize and affirm the sacred worth of the altar, in knowing that the Eucharistic Sacrifice—the sacramental memorial of the saving act of redemption which is Christ himself— is daily offered upon it. From this altar we receive the heavenly banquet at which the Bread of Life is dispensed and thence received into our homes; and from our homes to the world.
The Eucharistic Sacrifice offered upon the altar is the “source and summit” of Catholic worship. In like manner the Christian home is both the foundation and goal of a well-ordered community and society. Together, altar and home are the means established by God by which humanity is to realize its supernatural destiny: attainment of eternal glory in the beatitude of heaven. If altar and home are degraded or removed, then society collapses into the barbarism of life without meaning.
Join us in fostering a deeper experience and appreciation of the liturgy that together we may more fully enter into the mystery of Christ at the Altar.blog comments powered by Disqus