Rorate Caeli

Veneration of relics is "a sad chapter in the history of the liturgy"

From Anscar Chupungco's What, Then, is Liturgy?: Musings and Memoir, Claretian Publications, Quezon City 2010, pp. 51-52:
The veneration of the bodies or relics of saints is a sad chapter in the history of the liturgy. In the Middle Ages dealers made a big business out of the sale of bones purportedly of saints but later discovered, thanks to modern technology, to be of animals. Unsuspecting devotees brought them and built magnificent chapels to house richly Italicadorned reliquaries. When I was a student in Europe it was one of my diversions to look for some of the most amusing kinds of relics: a feather of St. Michael the Archangel, a piece of cloth stained with the milk of the Blessed Virgin, one of the prepuces of the Child Jesus, and believe it or not, a bottle containing the darkness of Egypt! The great reformer Martin Luther, appalled by aberrations committed on relics, fiercely took issue with the Catholic Church. Indeed, who would not be scandalized by reports that when priests were compelled to celebrate only one Mass a day to stifle the abuses surrounding Mass stipends, some had the temerity to simulate the Mass and raise the relic of a saint at the supposed moment of consecration? I can still hear my mentor Adrian Nocent's dismissive remark when he listened to stories of relics, private apparitions, and saccharine devotions: "It's another religion!"
Abstracting from the deviations of the past and from the odd practice of displaying dismembered parts of the bodies of saints for public veneration, it is important to keep in mind that the liturgy gives special honor to the human body, whether it is of a great saint or a departed ordinary Christian...
Adrian Nocent OSB was one of the leading lights of the liturgical reform of the 1960's.