The Ooze of God’s Spirit

Liquid Sacramentality for a Liquid Age


This essay explores the concept of sacramentality, so central to Roman Catholicism and other strands of Christianity, in a liquid age. Historical reflections on the elastic nature of this concept, lead to reflection about the contemporary trend towards increased ritual invention and the phe-nomenon of “liquid ritualization.” Two brief case studies of ritual invention are presented to illus-trate how such invention is filling in the gaps for theists and others where established rituals do not exists. These examples raise the question of theologizing about such liquid ritualization. In the end, the author turns to the concept of sensus fidelium to suggest that contemporary sacra-mental practices are too stolid and inflexible, and that an adequate sacramental theology in this liquid moment must recognize the fluidity of God’s own self-communication and the need for more ambidextrous reception of that self-communication.