Where the Shock of the Immediate Meets New Life
This chapter offers a thick description of a set of powerful public rituals: the Good Friday liturgies at the San Fernando Cathedral in San Antonio, Texas. The author shows how, in both implicit and explicit ways, the aesthetics of ritual converge with the ethics of ritual. This chapter looks not only at the most heavily attended liturgy of the day, the via crucis, (Way of the Cross), but also at three other important liturgies that precede and follow it -- an ecumenical prayer service, the Siete Palabras service, and the Pésame service. As the author argues, these services help to frame and give greater meaning to the via crucis. The chapter also describes the important work of the pastoral organizers who shape the liturgies in a variety of ways. Overall, this chapter serves as the book’s inductive point of reference for its subsequent theorization of the dynamic interplay between the aesthetics and ethics of faith.
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