Pomp and pageantry are monuments to the Church of the past



I read with great interest and growing disagreement, Father Nicholas Fleming’s guest editorial, “Royal Pageantry and Sacred Ritual Unite People to their Heritage,” in the September 29, 2022 issue of the Rhode Island Catholic.
Father Fleming seems to have forgotten that our ancestors fought a war to free us from the pomp and oppression of the monarchy he so glibly weaves into his fantasy of a church that, thank God, no longer exists.
Many years ago, I was taught that, “we study the past, to enlighten the present and improve the future.” I was likewise taught the wisdom of “ecclesia semper reformanda” (the church always reforming) which Father Fleming seems to have forgotten or simply ignores.
Anthony Padavano once wisely said, “The Church is not Jurassic Park, a monument to the past. The Church is not Tiananmen Square, meant to crush individual freedom. The Church is not the Berlin Wall, meant to keep people in against their will. The Church is the Field of Dreams.
Father Fleming seems to want a church stuck in a past that is a monument to pageantry, pomp and circumstance. As for me, and my people, we will embrace the Field of Dreams and trust where the Holy Spirit is leading our church.

Father Joseph Creedon, Senior Priest, Diocese of Providence