Wednesday, October 1, 2008 3:15-4:15

The Orientation of Sacred Space and Liturgical Prayer. The Debate around the celebration versus populum in the Catholic Church
by David H. Pereyra, MArch. MA., PhD. cand. (St. Michael's College)

The placement of the altar and the orientation of president and assembly in the liturgical celebration have become again matter for a heated theological debate. While the liturgical reform that followed Vatican II prescribed the orientation versus populum, Joseph Ratzinger, even before becoming Pope Benedict XVI, called into question the reasons for this change.
The present paper explores both arguments for and against the orientation versus populum in contemporary liturgical debate.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008 3:15-4:15

Ta Hagia Tois Hagiois
("The Holy Things for the Holy People")
Eucharistic Rites in Late Fourth Century Jerusalem

by Prof. Pablo Argárate, Dr. phil., Dr. theol. (Tübingen) (St. Michael’s College)

With Helena's discoveries, the "Holy Places" emerge in the fourth century, and a broad culture of pilgrimage develops. In the meantime, through stations and processions the liturgy begins appropriating these places, and by doing this, transforming them into "sacred space." The pilgrims, returning to their lands, brought back alongside with their intense spiritual experience the liturgical practices of the Holy City as well.
The lecture discusses the Eucharistic rites in Jerusalem in the witness of the bishop Cyril.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008 3:15-4:15

Liturgical Reform in Contemporary Judaism: 
Is it Necessary? Does it Work?
by Rabbi Dow Marmur, PhD (Senior Rabbi of Holy Blossom, Toronto)

In line with Heinrich Heine's dictum that "Jews pray theology," non-Orthodox movements in Judaism, particularly Reform, have tended to adjust the traditional liturgy to fit their theological orientation. As a result, new prayer books have been created in different countries, often every 25 years or so - as the theologies have been revised.
This paper addresses the complex question on whether these noble and often creative efforts help people to pray, or if they are primarily the result of eager editors and hopeful promoters.