Sunday, December 1, 2013

How modern liturgies drive people out of the Church

Is it ok for liturgy to offend faithful Catholics?
In a society where we are all called to be 'accepting', it is ironic that liturgical experts never seem to ask themselves this question.

I know of a young man who recently enlisted in the U.S. Army.  He was raised Catholic and was an altar boy for 10 years.  He was raised in the Novus Ordo and only assisted in a handful of Extraordinary Rite Masses during his entire career.  His parents tell me that he recently stopped attending the Masses offered at the post chapel.  The reason?

He thinks the Army's Masses are irreverent. 'Happy-clappy' he calls them. Now, I know that 'Mass is Mass', and would surely warn him about the spiritual danger of not putting up with whatever kind of Mass is being offered, and I pray that he does not let his frustration drive him into a state of permanent disillusionment.  But....from this small anecdote I think I see a lot of why Vatican II Mass attendance is a small fraction of what it was prior to its 'implementation'.  This young man is not against guitars. I am told he has spent many an evening at a local club attending concerts, usually country, but some of which would even qualify as 'rock'.  Yet he does not like such carryings-ons at the post chapel.  It is irreverent and *unmanly*.

Perhaps this young man represents but a sliver of the Catholic population, but  I doubt it,  Judging from radical drop in Mass attendance ( I reiterate:Vatican II Mass attendance is a miniscule fraction of what it was prior to the innovations. ) I think he is more likely typical of the multiude of former Catholics who were never enthused by the vulgarization of the Mass.  They are those who concluded in their simple way that if Mass was not 'above' being celebrated with pop music, hand clapping, cheer leading, etc., then it most likely wasn't nearly as special as what they had earlier  been lead to believe.  Hence to avoid the frustration of watching performances which scandalize their sensibilities, they just drifted away.

The innovators usually congratulate themselves on their 'inclusiveness'.  Yet, I fear, it is they who have excluded and estranged countless millions of poor, simple Catholics whose parents and grandparents and great grandparents would never have missed a Mass.     Maybe the innovators have never really looked themselves in the mirror, or ever seriously considered that their bold performances might be offensive to some of the Faithful. 

How many millions souls would have been saved had the innovators stuck to beauty and adoration which offends no one!

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