Friday, April 18, 2008

Reverence, Balance & Good Taste

The recent papal Mass in Washington, DC, restored the joy of 0ur youth. While some of the music was ecclectic to say the least, the restoration of magnificent, exquisite and uplifting vestments was more than just a blast from the past. It signals a Renaissance of elegance and class not seen in generations.

viva Papa Benedetto & Msgr. Guido Marini

I was very impressed with the well orchestrated logistics employed by the Archdiocese of Washington, DC. The Papal Mass was well planned at all levels. All I had to bring was an alb and red stole. I sat with my friend, Fr. Dennis Dalessandro, pastor of St. Andrew, Waynesboro. We were just a few rows from other priests of the Diocese of Harrisburg and surrounded by clergy from Washington, Arlington, Baltimore, Allentown, et al.

The altar was prepared according to the liturgical prescriptions of His Holiness with a conspicuous crucifix and seven candles on it. Everything was done REVERENTLY and PROPERLY according to the rubrics. The Ordinary Form of the Roman Missal was celebrated with full solemnity. Hopefully, bishops and priests across the USA will duplicate Pope Benedict's attention to lex orandi, lex credendi. No liturgical abuses, no aberrations and no nonsense. Imagine, if this took place in EVERY cathedral and every parish in the world? We would have to build new seminaries and noviates. And this is precisely B16's plan. The more people SEE and EXPERIENCE the proper reverence demanded by the Ordinary and the Extraordinary forms of the Roman Rite, the more they will mutually reinforce in each expression the organic and intrinsic need to identify the SACRED. The HOLY and Sacred mysteries of our faith deserve nothing less than our full, complete, active and conscious participation. This can only be done REVERENTLY and of course PROPERLY (in accord with the rubrics). Off-the-cuff, spontantaneous and innovative machinations have no place in divine worship.

Now, if we could just coordinate more consistent use of appropriate liturgical music and chant in every sacred celebration,


Anonymous said...

Oh Father, I was so embarrassed to the point of tears, at the music that they subjected the Holy Father to at Mass.

The bishops really need to get more serious about restoring the Liturgy, and especially Liturgical Music in this country.


Anonymous said...

I couldn't disagree with you more. I was saddened and distressed by this "show". Why entertainment at mass? why applause at mass? Even EWTN described it as overly multicultural, even calling the music 'amazon' influence. It was not uplifting, but a show. The highlight for me was the holy father's homily--excellent. but this mass confirmed that we are only deeper into a crisis than i originally thought. so much for our holy father bringing us to a more holy reverent approach to the holy sacrifice.

TJB said...

Im glad to see these positive comments on the Mass. Everything else I have heard was completely negative!

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

I agree as far as the Mass was offered with reverence and care by Pope Benedict..

The Music almost made me forget that half the fact that there were no Liurgical Abuses.

Keep how the Mass was offered subtract the music, plug in gregorian chant and Latin, and you have it.

Padre Giovanni Trigilio said...

I was at the Mass. I agree the music was ecclectic. I did not like the hodge-podge, Heinz 57 varieties of tunes played. I would have preferred a more coordinated, consistent and traditional music and hymns had been used. Since it was a Mass OUTSIDE and not inside a Church or Basilica, it was nevertheless done tastefully, reverently and properly. I would have loved to have been able to attend the Mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception or at Saint Patrick Cathedral, but I only had a ticket to the National Stadium Mass. The large crowds made outside Masses necessary.

Being a pastor of two parishes, however, I see the necessity of the local and diocesan church to utilize sacred space as much as possible. Other than a Papal visit, most parishes and dioceses do not NEED outside Masses. Hence, the day-to-day, regular use of Church for the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

When the exceptional and extraordinary occurence of a Papal visit take place, then we must use what is available. That being said, I think in comparison to the first two visits of JP2 to the USA, this first visit of B16 to America is much more sublime and thanks to MC Msgr. Guido Marini, more tasteful and reverent.

Dymphna said...

The music stank but the New York mass made up for it. Fr. were you there? I saw a priest who looked just like you walking past St. Vincent's after the mass.

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