Monday, January 26, 2009

A priest reflects on the "old Mass".....

But not the old Mass that you think he's talking about. An anonymous priest wrote in to Fr. Z with a little something that even many of us laity can relate to, especially if you grew up Catholic in the 70's and 80's.

He writes:

Greetings from _. I just thought I’d drop a note about my Mass experience on Sunday. I frequently get loaned out when there is a need. Such was the case this past Sunday….

To give some personal context, I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s, am nearing my 3rd anniversary of ordination, and am learning to celebrate the Mass according to the 62 Missal. [W]here I am stationed is by no means high church, but pretty "by the book" (we’re working on it). In addition, my confreres have charge of a parish where things are done along fairly traditional lines ….

All of this serves as a setup for the following: I realized this weekend that while I have been rediscovering the tradition, I have lost touch with the old Mass. Do not confuse this "old Mass" with the Traditional Latin Mass which for me is an ageless timeless discovery. The "old Mass" to which I refer is the Mass of my youth. It is the Mass of pianos and guitars, the Mass of loquacious commentators and "greet the people around you." It is the Mass of audience participation and interior dullness. It is the Mass of primping cantresses and now-dated pop styled music about us. It is the Mass of candy jar ciboria and pewter chalices handled by an excessive number of extraneous ministers (who must process in and out of course).

It hit me after the first Mass Sunday morning that, as a child born in the 70’s, all of this has become terribly old and tired and compared to the timeless tradition of the Church and is just worn out.

Mark me down in favor of the Mass of the ages and please let’s hang up the "old Mass."

Now.... go to Fr. Z's original post and catch his comments on this, as well as the combox chatter. I got a good chuckle out of this at lunch time and needed it.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!