I Love a Parade!

Catholics mean to console me: Just because the Church no longer celebrates Rogation days with the Mass, the Litany of the Saints and processions, I can still practice the personal devotions of fasting and prayer that accompany these days. They tell me I can practice Catholicism by myself.

This will not do.

The personal devotions of fasting and prayer are valuable but that is not what Rogation days are about.

I need a parish, I need other people—Rogation days cannot be reduced to the practice of personal disciplines. Rogation days are characterized by collective practices: the Litany of the Saints, the Mass and processions.

catholic procession 1

At least they were until Vatican II (from the Wiki): “The reform of the Liturgical Calendar for Latin Roman Catholics in 1969 delegated the establishment of Rogation Days, along with Ember Days, to the episcopal conferences.Their observance in the Latin Church subsequently declined.”

More on Rogation days

The postconciliar church did not technically banish Rogation days, but it’s a de facto banishment nevertheless.

The postconciliar church destroyed the collective, communal practices of Rogation days but allows us to still practice personal devotions—how very Protestant!

That is another reason I converted—I grew weary of Evangelical Bible study and “quiet times”, I was tired of just “me and Jesus.”

I want to be a cog in a wheel. I long for communal practices.

There is nothing better than a procession.

Rogation-Day-Procession-2

The communal practices of Catholicism provided opportunities for participants to experience what the philosopher, Roger Scruton, refers to as “species being” (start at around 4:56):

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