The communal celebration of the liturgy drew me to St Benedict’s Abbey, Atchison where I professed monastic vows in 1983. I was inspired to study liturgy further during seminary studies at St John’s Abbey, Collegeville, Minnesota. While pastoring in rural Kansas, I attended the Notre Dame summer school where I completed an M.A. specializing in Liturgy in 1999. Thereafter I transferred to Rome and matriculated at the Pontifical Institute of Liturgy and lived there at Sant’Anselmo. There I completed first a license then and Doctor of Sacred Liturgy in 2008.
Master’s level teaching in Liturgy
I helped to co-found the Institutum Liturgicum in Anglia et Cambria at Ealing Abbey, at the suggestion of Ephrem Carr, to provide master’s level education in liturgical research. Our curriculum currently comprises thirteen courses in liturgy developed from the curriculum of the Pontifical Institute of Liturgy, Sant’Anselmo, Rome, but it is offered in English, during intensive two-week summer courses in London.
I teach the annual introductory course to master’s level research in liturgy, the Liturgical Research Seminar offered during summer term block I. I alternate in summer term block II between teaching Hermeneutics I and the History of Western Liturgical Books in alternating years. I offer the course in proficient Latin for liturgists and the Latin of the letters of Cicero as part of our Summer Latin Academy held during block III.
Moderating doctoral research in Liturgy
I have begun to moderate the doctoral research of one student at KU Leuven. He is from Sri Lanka and is studying the mass formularies for reconciliation and for the preservation of justice and peace so that he may use these in healing the civil strife of his country since their civil war.
Commentaries on Latin prayers
I published weekly commentaries on the Latin prayers of the Missale Romanum with original English translations published in The Tablet of London, England from 2006 through 2011. The commentaries on the opening prayers or collects have been collected and are available as Listen to the Word, (The Tablet Trust, London 2009). The original English translations are posted regularly on the facebook page of the Institutum Liturgicum.
The method of interpreting the Latin prayers is presented along with the first published chapter of Reginald’s method for teaching Latin, adapted with reference to the prayers, in Appreciating the Collect: An Irenic Methodology, (ed. J.G. Leachman – D.P. McCarthy, St Michael’s Abbey Press, Farnborough Hants 2008).
Church Architecture Consultancy
My doctoral research concerned the history and use of the presidential chair, that is the chair the presider sits in during the liturgy. My interests in Liturgy have taken me in several directions.
I have been publishing on liturgical ritual and architecture in a monthly series in The Tablet of London. I have given consultation to Stanbrook Abbey in Yorkshire, England, for the liturgical arrangement of their new chapel, as well as to the Mother of the Church Congregation in Warwickshire, England, for their recently rearranged chapel. I am currently translating numerous speeches given during the Second Ecumenical Vatican Council selected for their reference to church architecture. These will be included in a publication on church architecture for a fuller ritual celebration of liturgy.