Connected but Disintegrated: Impact of Virtual Liturgy During Pandemic [Theological Reflection]
Updated: Jan 22
The Staff and Students of Don Bosco Theological Center, Kavarapettai organized the Second Session of the Theological Reflection for this Academic Year on 18th January 2022 at 02.25pm.
The Theological Reflection had as its theme, “Connected but Disintegrated: The Impact of Virtual Liturgy in the Extraordinary time of Pandemic.”
Rev. Fr. Alexander Mariadoss, General Secretary for Liturgical Commission of Tamil Nadu Bishops council (TNBC), Tindivanam, was the resource person for the occasion.
The theological reflection began with a short prayer service, imploring the blessings of the Almighty. After the welcome address, Bro. Christuraj, third year student of theology gave the opening talk on the topic: Pandemic in history and its impact on Catholic worship. He gave a short history of the major world pandemics from Antonine Plague, 165AD till the present COVID 19 and listed some of the adapted liturgical celebrations and pious movements of the Church during the extraordinary times of pandemic, for the spiritual well-being of the people. The second talk was given by Bro. Lourdu Joseph, second year student of theology on the experiences of the people of God on online Liturgy in the extraordinary times of COVID 19. He said that the discipleship of the common people flourished and family prayers renewed but at the same time created a wider gap among the youth. He concluded that the people should not hesitate to go back to the Church once the pandemic ends.
After this, Rev. Fr. Alexander Mariadoss, the guest speaker began by presenting the Catholic Church’s view on the use of mass media quoting Vatican II and other Church Documents on media and social communication. He then spoke of the three types of telecast: Live telecast, delayed telecast and pre-recorded telecast, and notified that the Church favours live telecast for Liturgy. Having presented the positive and negative impacts of virtual liturgy in this extraordinary time of pandemic, he concluded his talk quoting Cardinal Robert Sarah, that ‘no broadcast is comparable to personal participation or can replace it’.
At the end of this, we had a floor discussion in which the participants had time to share their insights, reflections and comments on the theme. The queries of the online and offline participants were clarified and together we discussed about the various ways and means by which we can proactively adapt to the present situation of the pandemic and keep alive the faith of the people.
The theological reflection ended with a Hymn to Don Bosco by 04.00 pm.