The Immaculate Conception
08/December/2007 Filed in: Jottings
The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception is one of those feasts that divide East and West — not because we disagree about the privileged sinlessness of Mary but because we disagree about Original Sin. It is, however, a good feast to have during Advent because it is so full of hope. To enjoy it to the full, one really has to be in Spain, where it is celebrated with particular splendour. Anyone lucky enough to be in Seville ought to go to the cathedral and watch "Los Seises": six boys, heads covered according to sixteenth century custom, dancing with strange, slow steps before the tabernacle and singing hymns in honour of the Immaculate Conception. Rome has never been very enthusiastic about liturgical dance, but I wonder whether in Seville we have a faint memory of David dancing before the Ark?