instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Monday, December 01, 2003

Every knee shall bend

I gave a somewhat mechanical reply to a comment below about bowing your head when the Holy Name of Jesus is spoken during Mass:
Now, the bow during the Creed is, of course, profound (i.e., from the waist); at the Holy Name of Jesus (etc.), it's just a bow of the head. It need hardly be noticeable.

It's not that hard to keep track of head bow cues, apart from the readings. The liturgy is surprisingly sparing in its use of the Name of Jesus.
Mechanics are all well and good; I happen to think the body can train the soul to a certain extent.

However, the point of reverencing the Holy Name is not to bow the head well, but to acknowledge and deepen the relationship between the saved and the Savior, the adopted child and the Begotten Son, the least in the Kingdom and the King (casting our minds back to the Feast of Christ the King and all that was said about the differences between the Divine King and human kings).

An occasional Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus might help develop the virtue, rather than simple reflex, of reverencing the Holy Name.

Bl. John of Vercelli, pray for us.