West Suburban Catholic Culture Series on "The Liturgy"

Nov 11, 2020
Ruth Lake Country Club
6200 South Madison Street
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Christopher CarstensDiocese of La Crosse, WI

Kevin MagasUniversity of St. Mary of the Lake

Denis McNamaraBenedictine College


$200 per person per semester. You can register for both fall and spring now for a discounted rate of $350. The fall semester will meet in September, October, and November; the spring semester will meet in January, February, and March.

6:30PM hors d’oeuvres and cocktails | 7:00PM lecture and Q&A | 8:30PM End

The Ruth Lake Country Club adheres to all local and national guidelines regarding masking and social distancing. Participants must remain masked until they are seated. All chairs are spread at least six feet apart. Staff in masks and gloves will prepare appetizers and drinks.

In 1918, the German priest Romano Guardini lamented that “the lack of fruitful and lofty culture causes spiritual life to grow numbed and narrow.” The remedy was that “prayer must be simple, wholesome, and powerful,” while also being “rich in ideas and powerful images, and speak a developed but restrained language.”  Guardini concluded that this “is precisely the way in which the prayer of the liturgy has been formed.”
The events of recent months have made us acutely aware of what we lose when the Church’s rites, ceremonies, and corporate worship (the Liturgy) are taken from us.  Guardini wrote The Spirit of the Liturgy as the First World War ravaged Europe in order to remind his readers how the Church’s worship meets the deep, complex and paradoxical yearnings of man, centers a people in the Lord, and gives them new language and insight into the central mysteries of the faith. He called the liturgy “nothing else but truth expressed in terms of prayer.” Perhaps we could use a similar reminder now.

Beginning in September 2020, the Lumen Christi Institute will host a monthly series on Catholic culture at the Ruth Lake Country Club in Hinsdale. The theme for this inaugural year of 2020-2021 will be “The Liturgy.” Topics will include: The Spirit of the Liturgy; post-Vatican II reforms and Benedict XVI’s reform of the reform; sacred architecture; sacred music; the Liturgy of the Hours; and beauty and sacred art. 



September 24
Guardini’s The Spirit of the Liturgy with Christopher Carstens

October 14
Post-Vatican II Reform and Benedict XVI’s Reform with Kevin Magas

November 11
Sacred Architecture with Denis McNamara


Christopher Carstens is Director of the Office for Sacred Worship in the Diocese of La Crosse, Wisconsin, a visiting faculty member at the Liturgical Institute at the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Illinois, editor of the Adoremus Bulletin, and one of the voices on The Liturgy Guys podcast. He is author of A Devotional Journey into the Mass (Sophia) and, along with Father Douglas Martis, the co-author of Mystical Body, Mystical Voice: Encountering Christ in the Words of the Mass (Liturgy Training Publications).

Kevin Magas is Assistant Professor of Dogmatic Theology at the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, IL. He holds an MTS and PhD in theology from the University of Notre Dame.

Denis McNamara is Director of the Center for Beauty and Culture at Benedictine College in Atchinson, Kansas. Previously he was Academic Director and Associate Professor at the Liturgical Institute at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake. He holds a B.A. in Art History from Yale University and an M.Arch.H. and Ph.D. in Architectural History from the University of Virginia. Prof. McNamara is author of Heavenly City: The Architectural Tradition of Catholic Chicago (2005), Catholic Church Architecture and the Spirit of the Liturgy (2009), How to Read Churches: A Crash Course in Ecclesiastical Architecture (2011), He’s a sought-after lecturer, scholar, architectural consultant and judge of sacred art, as well as co-host of the popular podcast, Liturgy Guys.