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The Liturgical Institute

Written by Clare McCallan

Life got away from me, as it so often does. In fact, it got away from me so quickly and wildly, that I almost missed my interview with Jesse Weiler of the Liturgical Institute, entirely. 

But, I’m so glad I was able to have a conversation with him, because as it turns out, a conversation with Jesse is much more than a chat about his work. A conversation with Jesse is a conversation about beauty and tradition and why both are so necessary to the church.

As we dove into these topics, our many excited tangents all eventually led us back to the topic that had brought us together in the first place: Jesse’s work with the Liturgical Institute.

The Liturgical Institute was established in 2000 by the Archbishop of Chicago, in order to prepare Catholics for a “new era in liturgical renewal.” It exists to serve laity, religious and clergy in their quest to deepen their theological knowledge and critical reasoning.

As Jesse told me, “I believe not only in imparting knowledge of the liturgy on teachers, but also on the priests and the people in the pew, because they need to know their role in the Mass, and how beauty plays into that.”

And speaking of beauty, Jesse and the Institute have graciously included a link to one of their online study programs in this quarter’s Little Catholic Box. The course is entitled: “Theology of Beauty and the Sacred Liturgy”. These lectures have been crafted to help viewers understand the sacramental signs and symbols, iconography, sacred art, and architecture. 

By combining prayer and study, the Institute hopes that this course will help you find a greater understanding and appreciation for beauty, both internally and externally.

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