Saturday, March 30, 2013

BOMBSHELL: I HOPE WE'RE NOT HEADING FOR SCHISM


Pope Francis on Holy Thursday telephoned his predecessor, Benedict XVI and had a "long and intense conversation" with him. The Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told journalists on Friday. The discussion following the Chrism Mass, at which all priests repeat their ordination promises, have shown the community between the two, the spokesman said.

The Pope elected on March 13 already has telephoned his predecessor twice and last Saturday he paid a visit to the current residence in Castel Gandolfo. There was a detailed two-hour exchange of views.


I know from experience that when a new pastor comes in and an older retired pastor remains, people will take offense if the new pastor in any way seems to undo what the old pastor did, even if the intention of the new pastor isn't to give offense, but simply doing what he's always done.

I suspect that the Pontiff Emeritus and those who are close to him are gravely offended by the rather quick and sudden dismantling of the Emeritus' ministry in terms of beauty and tradition, especially with the visuals of the papacy. It doesn't take a clairvoyant to figure this out.

We've moved from the "hermeneutic of continuity" to the "hermeneutic of rupture" at supersonic speed with Pope Francis, but I must say only in style, not really in substance, yet.

A commenter on a more radically traditional blog wrote the following:

"I will not be so bold as to speculate on what they discussed. But did anyone else notice how deep in thought Francis seemed to be during the Good Friday rites, and the Stations at the Colosseum?

Maybe it's just me, but he appeared to suddenly be a man with many heavy thoughts on his mind."


My Comment: Yesterday when I viewed the Holy Father at the Coliseum, I must say that I had the same feeling that something was wrong, and it wasn't just the solemn nature of the Stations of the Cross. But of course I could be wrong.

But we know that there is hysteria in the traditionalist movement and the Associated Press is reporting it and you can read it HERE!

This has been the most exciting and tumultuous transition in a papacy and with a living emeritus pope still on the scene and who is no shrinking violet!

Fasten your seat belts, I predict the ride will be bumpy! God bless Holy Mother Church.

41 comments:

Pater Ignotus said...

We are not headed toward schism, and your suggestion that we may be is, I believe, intemperate and ill-advised.

Pope Francis has "dismantled" nothing in terms of beauty and tradition. His style is simply different from B16's. He prefers candles on the corners of the altar, vestment fabric and miters that are less ostentatious, and less showy pectoral crosses. If these choices are causes for schism, then those leaving the Church because of them (Ubi Petrus, Ibi Ecclesia) were never very in it to begin with.

By shunning the regal accretions that have nothing to do with the Petrine Ministry, Pope Francis is setting a challenging example. Some, who are attached to the "smells and bells" will be unhappy and complain. Those who can be moved by the Spirit to follow his example of simplicity/humility and service will be the core of the New Evangelization. No one has been drawn to Christ because a pope wore ermine....

Maybe Francis is familiar with Archbishop Quinn's writings (you called his suggestions "disastrous," but I doubt you have read much of them at all) on the needed reform of the way in which the Petrine Ministry is carried out. If so, the ride will indeed be bumpy, because being freed from our complacency and the "counterfeit gods" we have set up is no fun at all.

Deo volente said...

Father,

I know that internet rumors are just that: rumors. However, on Facebook today someone posted that the Pope Emeritus' former tailor (not Gammerelli but a man known to him for many years) was distraught at how much weight he has lost recently. Perhaps this had more to do with the health of his predecessor and much less to do with the dynamics of liturgies? The source of the statements was a Roman priest, but I cannot confirm this news. I believe our prayers are needed for both His Holiness and his predecessor!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I think the gloating of some of the more progressive bent has led to what could become more entrenchment on both sides rather than unity. However, PI's nonsense about simplicity being more evangelistic is not proven with any facts. Yes, there has been a heck of a lot of publicity for the Church and this will bring some back, but how long, remember our churches, all of them, were much fuller after 9/11, but short-lived.
While St. Joseph's is into bells and smells and we interpret it in a most postive way, I would suggest or ask PI who has a more simple parish and way of doing things to tell us how many RCIA members are being brought into his Church this evening. I think St. Joseph has the largest number in the diocese, with 14 baptism tonight, of which I am on my way to do, and about 30 others being brought into the full communion of the one, holy, Roman Catholic and in this parish, incense filled Church!

Santos Luzardo said...

Progressive and liberal branches of the Church can and are just as vicious and vile in their remarks when they don't like something or a "style" as you may. Let's not forget that it was not only at the beginning of Pope Benedict XVI's Pontificate but all the way through it. Some of the most horrible caricatures and headlines all coming from the liberal or progressive camps. Maybe the bar or standard is set higher for traditionalist peoples. Quite a double standard. It would be truly sad and disturbing if Pope Francis can only call attention to himself and the Church by dismantling and trampling on traditions and styles. I would like him to put it to the test and for him to be humbled enough to celebrate a Pontifical Mass in full ceremony and see if the world and media treat him the same. If anything schismatic occurs then the actions of the Pope will in the end be responsible for it. The same as if it had happened under Benedict, John Paul or Paul. One thing is for sure that the actions of the last few weeks are in complete disregard for Benedict and his Pontificate and no amount of sugar coating or obedience to the new Pope can obfuscate that.

rcg said...

I may be accused of being a Pollyanna, but I have not read very much negative into what Pope Francis has done at all. I do not think he is sending a message to the Bishops to crack down on the TLM parishes, nor do I think they are going to interpret it that way. His eschewing the fancier digs and dress of Pope Benedict are simple personal preference as well as showing that such simplicity is also pleasing to God. Conversely, the trappings we give to our Bishops and Pope are the trappings we would offer to Our Lord as Prince and King. They wear red to remind them of the result of representing Christ. If I were to 'tune up' Pope Francis' representations I would remind him that the time is past to refuse this cup, and step up to the plate and end confusion and strife in his flock. I think he is more than up to it.

Gregorian Mass said...

Weren't the reforms and shake ups supposed to be inside the Curia? Weren't they the ones who were supposed to be corrected? ALl I have seen so far is the changing of the idea of the Papacy and its' external symbols, what was left of them after the 70's. It was already simplified then, or have we forgotten there was no longer a Tiara, papal gloves, the Sedia, Flabellum, Palantine Guard, Noble Guard, Papal Court, Chandaliers to light the inside and outside of St Peter's, High Altars rearranged and many more things suppressed or abolished. Pope Benedict was merely showing us what was left.

Gregorian Mass said...

I would also disagree that no one has been drawn to Christ because of ermine. On the contrary it is the external trappings of the Church that often get people to visit Rome, the Vatican and learn initially abut the Church and Papacy. The initial meeting with "ermine" or "smells and bells" often leads to a deeper and more profound road and encounter with Christ. And there is nothing wrong with that as all roads lead to Christ and his Church. It was the smells and bells that lead to the first encounter with Christ for many converts in the past who would show up at a Catholic Midnight Mass and in turn be awed by the beauty which started a road to conversion. Does that still happen today? I have not heard of it.

ytc said...

I don't know why some people hate PI. I dislike his hermeneutics, and his aesthetics, but I have nothing but respect for a man who gives up his life for God. I agree with him here.

There is a genuine simplicity and a false simplicity. I have posted on this before at CAF, perhaps I will share my writings here.

Also, Abp. Quinn is a bit much, but meh...

Pater Ignotus said...

Good Father - You claim on this blog to love the new pope, to stand by him. Then, you turn around and suggest that his actions may be causing a schism.
This is nothing more than grand-standing and it is hurtful to the Church. Which is it?

As a pastor you should be exhorting fidelity to the Bishop of Rome, not fanning the flames of schism.

And I am very glad that St. Joseph has welcomed a large number into the Church this evening. More power to you. Many people like the smells and bells, the Latin and the chanting, and that's fine. But that isn't the universal experience of Catholics in Macon, let alone in the world.
And anyone would expect that St. Joseph Parish. ten times larger than Holy SPirit, would have a much larger number of new Catholics. That's simple statistics.

We have to ask how many new Catholics, in your parish and in mine, are still in the pews 1 year or 10 years down the road.

At the same time, your own pew counts indicate your numbers are down 23% in the last ten years. Try as you might, you can offer no facts that support your claim that the demographic shift (of white people, as you stated) is the sole cause of this. Holy Spirit, by contrast, has had a 1.6% decrease in the same time.

Anonymous said...

Father, I live in Savannah and attend Mass at the Cathedral. Yes, at 1:00. I just came across your blog and wanted to thank you for what you do and keep encouraging you in your efforts to inspire people to lead holier lives. Evangelization starts with our primary prayer and that is the Mass. Keep leading by example. God bless and happy easter!

Pater Ignotus said...

And if, Good Father, your "numbers" are an indication of the effectiveness of of your smells and bells, what were the numbers under your predecessor, whose liturgical style was vastly different from your own. You have the record books - surely you can enlighten us. Are your numbers higher or lower than those of the previous regime?

Joseph Johnson said...

I just found out tonight that we are losing our (much loved and appreciated) pastor in June to a yet to be revealed reassignment. He is a very good homilist and has made a lot of very good liturgical changes in the direction of the reform of the reform in continuity.
He is very outspoken and holds strong opinions but some lucky parish in the Diocese of Savannah is about to get a very fine priest. Thank you Father Paul O'Connell!

We just lost Pope Benedict XVI and now I lose my pastor. I hope not, but I fear I am about to experience similar feelings as Guido Marini.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

PI, I'll answer your RCIA question (which the previous pastor did not have, he had the six week pre-Vaticn II convert class, when you answer my question about how many candidates or cathecumens you had!

And don't shoot the messenger about schism, there are many concerned people out there.

Anonymous 2 said...

May I ask a very simple, and no doubt many will think a stupid, question: When do we think we will arrive at a point at which, on the one hand, various supporters of the TLM will not feel the need to express their support defensively by attacking the OF or certain of its liturgical styles (folk masses, for example); and on the other hand, various supporters of the OF or certain of its liturgical styles will not feel the need to express their support defensively by attacking the TLM? In other words, when can we leave the Land of Or and reach the Land of And? Just asking.

I know it is just a work of Catholic imagination (from pre-Vatican 2 days) but many years ago a fellow Catholic brought to my attention a wonderful little book called “Mr. Blue,” authored in 1954 by Myles Connolly. Now very few people can actually live like Mr. Blue (Francis of Assisi perhaps) but very few Catholics surely can fail to be inspired by Mr. Blue’s account of his idea for a movie and what happens when the last Christian (who is a Catholic priest) utters the words of consecration “Hoc est enim corpus meum. . .” as the forces of the IGW (the International Government of the World) are about to bomb him.

What Connolly dramatizes, of course, is the very essence of the Mass -- the incredible, mind-boggling, extraordinary essence -- that we Catholics so often take for granted. And this essence is incredible, mind-boggling, and extraordinary, whether celebrated in the EF or the OF and whether celebrated in Latin or in English or in Swahili. This surely is what should unite us and help overcome any tendencies to schism.

Gregorian Mass said...

This dialogue is probably a small microcosm of what is taking place all over the world inside Catholic circles. IF calls for a Papal style were heeded and not the style of the man occupying the chair were concrete and stable focus may indeed be on the poor for now, instead we have been distracted and will remain so. That is not the fault of the people partaking in the dialogue, it lays upon the shoulders of the people or person sowing the seeds of confusion. What shocks me is that it was allowed to take place by provoking either side of the debate. Not everyone may have liked red shoes or brocade and Fanons, however it was but a short month ago that we were all focused on the needs for reform of the Curia, and some action on what has become a huge scandal for the Church, the sex abuse scandal. Now that has fallen below the surface. Action has only been taken on vestments and traditions. Now the Pope may be innocent in all this, or is he? But some Cardinals and Bishops sure have alot to gain by such distractions. I would think it easier to put on the red shoes, red cape and storm into the Curial offices and let some people go. The news media would be looking at shocked faces and have no time to look down to the color of someone's shoes! Maintaining Traditions and changing something or someone that both sides agree needs to change. Unity in spite of "style"

Gene said...

Ignotus, it is pretty clear that you understand neither the majesty or sovereignty of God as manifested in the Church and what you cynically call "smells and bells." I believe you also referred to eschatology and the Resurrection of the dead as "pie in the sky," and you refuse to answer the question someone asked about whether you believed in the Real Presence and the bodily Resurrection of Christ. Now, tell me, why would anyone on this blog take anything you say seriously? There is, however, irony and humor in someone like you referring to "counterfeit gods." That is a HOOT...

Keyser Soze said...

Before he was a pope, Cardinal Ratzinger was asked about the prophetic warnings given in Akita Japan, an approved apparition. The cardinal replied that the message of Akita was the same as the message of Fatima. Those prophecies include this statement:

"The work of the devil will infiltrate even into the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against bishops. The priests who venerate Me will be scorned and opposed by their confreres … churches and altars sacked; the Church will be full of those who accept compromises and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord."

We can certainly see this at work in this story of two bishops of Rome and the subsequent remarks between Fr. McDonald and Fr. Ignotus.

I would respectfully submit to Fr. Ignotus that what he dismisses as mere "stylistic" differences and "offensive trappings" are much, much more. They are symbols of continuity that existed long before the diabolical disorientation brought the smoke of Satan into the highest levels of the Church.

The higher numbers of people who join the Church in a traditional setting and the undeniably higher numbers of vocations that traditional orders produce (SSPX AND FSSP) prove the point. People are drawn to the Catholic Church when it most reflects the Traditions that everyone associates with the Catholic Church. Why bother converting to become better Protestants? Who wants to attend a protestantized liturgy that differs only inasmuch as it offers a consecration?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

There is always a struggle in the Church and I hope that we aren't distracted by vestments, either simple or complex as it seems that progressives were distracted by the more ornate things of our tradition and now traditionalists by them more austere. Pope Francis is sent by God to do something that we may not understand and I think we all need to give him time. I believe this will be a short pontificate, but I'm not clairvoyant.

Gene said...

Ermine, mitres, incense, bells, ornate Churches, rich vestments, etc. are signs of the sovereignty of God and His majesty. The Church, both in appearance and in practice, is supposed to be a foreshadowing of the Heaven and the Glory of Resurrection life.

Now, theology time: there is a theme in Doctrine of God and its embodiment in Christology that encompasses both Catholic and Protestant theology. It was best presented in a semester on History of Christian Doctrine by Wilhelm Pauck (a premiere theologian/Church historian) when I was in grad school. Here it is in a nutshell: in his Reformation over-reaction to abuses in the Catholic Church, Luther's theology emphasized that God's sovereignty is shown primarily in love. This theme is the one that leads to a radically immanentist, horizontal theology, despite Luther's actual intentions.

A few decades later, here comes John Calvin, raised a devout Catholic and an incisive and analytical theological mind. Calvin was heavily influenced by Augustine (yes, that's right), and saw where Luther's theology led. He also saw, in Catholic theology, a tendency toward Pelagianism and a trend not unlike some of Luther's careless thinking. This led Calvin to a tightly woven theology emphasizing that God's love is primarily and ultimately shown in Sovereignty.
For Calvin (as for Augustine), Christ's humility, His poverty, His teachings, His Sacrifice, His love mean nothing unless viewed and understood in relation to the Sovereignty of God. It is this sovereign Creator and Ruler of the universe that chose, by the power of the Holy Spirit to become Incarnate of the Virgin Mary...IN HISTORY. This man Jesus in all His poverty and humility is God, the sovereign and terrible Judge to which we owe obedience and worship. Catholic worship and Priesthood recapitulate the worship and Priesthood of ancient Israel. All the meticulous demands of ritual placed upon the Hebrew Priesthood by God and embodied in the "smells and bells," so cynically mentioned in an above post, of Catholic worship are not only obedience, they signify (not symbolize...there is a difference) a putting right of the chaos of sin and disobedience through ordered and proper worship.
Now, when Amos ("I take no pleasure in your solemn assemblies; to the noise of your songs I will not listen") and Hosea, who got himself a whore for a Church, issued their stern warnings, they did not do so because they did not like ritual worship; they did so because the worship and ritual of Israel had become impure and tainted by cultural syncretism and, if you will, humanistic influences. Sound familiar? (continued)

Gene said...

So, perhaps Calvin was more Catholic than he thought or we think, with his emphasis upon God's sovereignty and majesty. It is all in Augustine, you know (yep, predestination, too). Some would say, "well, there needs to be a balance between God's love and God's sovereignty." But, it is not a balance. Sovereignty is prior in Incarnational Christology; otherwise Jesus is just a good man, and the bastard son of Mary. God's majesty and sovereignty are the theological premise, the First Cause, if I may use Aristotle (Aquinas did), for Christology. The Mystery of why this Majestic God chose to become man, why He chose us, is a theological cul de sac from which there is no turn around. It is the rock upon which all theological and philosophical construction breaks. When Protestantism lost sight of this in the post-Reformation, the Holy Catholic Church maintained it. The Church embodied the Mystery in her worship and practice. Now, the Church is having another Protestant crisis. There are strong elements in the Church who would submerge sovereignty in love, turning God's sovereignty into "pie in the sky" and love into a cynical and meaningless slogan based upon human programs that cynically use and manipulate Church teaching for political and social ends.

In these two recent Popes, Benedict and Francis, we are seeing these themes of sovereignty and love acted out. It is a theological struggle that has deep roots going all the way back to the OT. If protestantism, as represented by Calvin, has anything to teach present day Catholicism, it is that an awareness of God's sovereignty has been lost by our culture and the Church has failed to keep it primary in her worship. If anything, we need more ermine, incense, Latin, splendorous garments, and bells...as long as we understand them, not as showy fluff and a self-conscious display of wealth (did anyone ever, really), but as obedient signs and reminders of this majestic God who loves us and redeems us from sin through the humble Christ...who is also this majestic God.

JHB3 said...

You all need to remember... at the present time, there are already at least five anti-popes:

Anti-pope Michael I (aka David Bawden, an off shoot of the SSPX -- wonder if Bishop Williamson will come into full communion with him?)

Anti-pope Gregory XVIII (aka Sergio Maria, who has a mini-continuity: he was preceded by Anti-pope Peter II, who was preceded by Anti-pope Gregory XVII, who declared himself pope when Paul VI, whom he considered a martyr, died).

Anti-pope Alexander IX (aka Joaquin Llorens)

Anti-pope Raphael (aka Titus Otieno, again with a mini-continuity, preceded by Anti-pope Pius XIII, who was precede by Anti-pope Timothy who started this line of Anti-popes in 1963)

And in Bergoglio's own Argentina, there is a line of Anti-popes started in 2006, the current is Alexander IX.

Will Bergoglio himself be declared an Anti-pope, since Pope Benedict XVI is still alive? Time and history will tell. Just a personal opinion, let me add I myself have a very funny feeling about Pope Francis, not unlike the feeling I had about Fr John Corapi. Everyone was in love with Fr Corapi and whenever I expressed my funny feeling about him, they would tell me I was nuts. Just a thought.

Joy said...

"Newness often makes us fearful, including the newness which God brings us, the newness which God asks of us. We are like the Apostles in the Gospel: often we would prefer to hold on to our own security, to stand in front of a tomb, to think about someone who has died, someone who ultimately lives on only as a memory, like the great historical figures from the past. We are afraid of God’s surprises. Dear brothers and sisters, we are afraid of God’s surprises! He always surprises us! The Lord is like that." Holy Father Pope Francis, Easter Vigil 2013

I think The Lord has surprised us again: both Trads and Progressives. This seems to be a man who does not tolerate foolishness. There will be no clown masses, no liturgical dance, no lengthy processions or Cappa Magnas!
I believe that the Spirit of The Lord filled the hearts of the Cardinals and revealed to them his choice and much like his choice in David, it was the simple, ruddy one that was least expected!
How exciting for us to be witness to it all, to be surprised.
Today the tomb is empty and weare all shocked and surprised; searching for the glorified one who we mistaken for the Gardner!

Anonymous said...

Joy:

I would be very, very careful about dismissing "long processions" and other traditions as "foolishness" and placing such practices in the same category as clown Masses.

Father McDonald:
I don''t think you are clairvoyant. I believe you are using common sense when you state that you believe this will be a short pontificate. Pope Bergoglio is no youngster, certainly not the athlete Wojtyla was on his election and there are forces lining up against the Church that will not back down. In the end, God will triumph, but the immediate future looks dark. Very dark.

Gene said...

Joy, you may also want to remember that God judges the Church...sometimes through the Church.

John Nolan said...

"Bells and smells". A derogatory comment used by mainstream Anglicans about their high church brethren. Since Pope Francis took over, has there been one fewer peal of a bell, one fewer chink of a thurible? No.

Joy said...

Anonymous, you assume I am only referring to traditional processions. I also feel that the Holy Father would not encourage long processions involving dancers twirling bowls of incense, banners from every fringe group in the congregation, or endless gifts of the local harvest.
One man's beauty is an other man's foolishness.
He seems not interested in any of it.
Why I would need to be "very, very careful" interests me. Sounds almost threatening.

Joy said...

Gene, I am fully aware of this. And I prefer to leave the judgement up to God. I choose to remain faithful and obedient; trusting that God will guide us and enlighten us through the Spirit. I pray to be open and loyal to the Holy Father.
One post I read on this blog suggested that they would take a break from the church during Pope Francis' pontificat and come back when someone better came along! This is shocking to me. My faith and my allegiance is to the God and the Church. Leaving the Sacraments, going without Eucharist or Penance seems a reckless and dangerous act.
Did you see that post? What are your thoughts on this?

Gene said...

Yes, Joy, I did see that post and it is disturbing to think that some may do this. That is the sin of pride and encompasses a few other sins as well, not to mention that it places one's soul in danger. Some may seek a more traditional parish or an FSSP one, or even an SSPX one (which may have its own set of problems,depending upon how this Pope views them), but to abandon the Church because the Pope just doesn't suit you is wrong and a great sin.

Anonymous said...

For more than 1900 years the Church operated in complete unity. Those who were in the fold knew what the liturgy would be. They knew what the Church taught. Popes, bishops and priests were, for the most part, on the same page. There was a consistent teaching and a consistent discipline.

Ironically, it seems that the very Catholics, priests and laity alike, that are the most likely to accuse one side of schism is the side most devoted to all things novel and new.

Dave said...

FrAM, by "short", do you mean John Paul I short or John XXIII short?

Marc said...

Surely there have been humble popes in the past... One can be a humble pope by shunning the tiara or the papal apartments. One can be a humble pope by accepting these things with the proper spirit. The same applies to those of us in the world since humility and charity are actions of the interior life manifested in our works.

So... why must there be a dichotomy between being humble and having beautiful liturgy? Furthermore, why must there be a dichotomy between simply liturgy and beautiful liturgy?

For example, I attended a very beautiful Low Mass today for Easter. I'm sure this Tridentine Mass was more modest in solemnity than the Novus Ordo in St. Joseph and certainly much less ornate than most Novus Ordo Vigils last night.

There are a lot of false equivalencies being drawn here. The Pope is not the worldwide liturgizer that every priest needs to emulate. Perhaps some have forgotten that one of the tasks of Vatican I was to sort out the erroneous position of the ultramontanists by setting more exact parameters around papal infallibility -- it wasn't intended to invest more authority, but to appropriately limit existing authority (in accordance with God's will).

As I've said previously, in the past, no one looked to the pope for liturgical ideas. There are two reasons for this: first, he celebrates basically his own liturgy in the papal Mass. Second, mass media is new. His Holiness himself has simply referred to himself as the Bishop of Rome and has addressed his priests. Presumably, the last thing this humble man would want is the world emulating his liturgical style, which is certainly the last thing on his mind (given his mindset and the fact he's a Jesuit).

What he wants is for people to emulate his humility. One can do this while attending the Mass in Latin or one can do this while attending the Novus Ordo. The important thing is that one aspire to humility, that is to holiness.

Anonymous said...

Hearing how the pope wants his masses to be shorter than previous papal masses, we can only hope one good thing will come from this: the abandonment of the overly long and repetitive responsorial Gloria (for all of us, not just papal masses)!

Pater Ignotus said...

Pin/Gene - I amswered your query about the Real Presence and the bodily resurrection of Jesus. You didn't care for the answers, but I replied nonetheless.

Keyser - I do think the differences we have seen are stylistic and I don't think I used the phrase "offensive trappings."

Good Father - We had no candidates or catechumens received into the Church at the Easter Vigil. At various times we had seven in the RCIA; five drifted away and two, for personal reasons, have deferred entering the Church but are still moving in that direction.

Now, having answered your Q, will you fulfill your part of the bargain? Quoting: "PI, I'll answer your RCIA question (which the previous pastor did not have, he had the six week pre-Vaticn II convert class, when you answer my question about how many candidates or cathecumens you had!"

William Meyer said...

In the parish I attend, the only thing which makes the Gloria overlong is the setting, which attempts to make it a song with a refrain, instead of leaving it verbatim a prayer.

Gene said...

PI, You did not answer, you quibbled. But, in your case, that is often to be considered an answer.

Marc said...

In my deanery, all the parishes have combined to have one RCIA program and, as I understand it, all the priests of the deanery teach portions of the program and it goes from parish to parish.

I think that is a good idea because it demonstrates to the candidates and catechumens that they are joining the Catholic Church and not one particular parish.

I never understood why Macon's three parishes didn't combine to have one program. I understand there might be a need to have a different program for Spanish speakers, but otherwise it doesn't make much sense.

Joseph Johnson said...

William Meyer,
We have had the same problem in our parish with the overlong Gloria. About four years ago at Easter, we chanted the Latin version of the Gloria from Mass VIII, which is probably the most familiar Latin version. Of course, the Latin version doesn't keep going back and repeating "Gloria in excelsis Deo et in terra pax hominibus." Nonetheless, our pastor told us afterward that we had some complaints (presumably from some misinformed people who thought VII banned Latin) about the Gloria being too long and it being "too much Latin" (it was, by the way, the only Latin part we used in that Easter Mass).

My chief complaint about the English setting (Mass of Joy and Peace, I believe it is called) that we use 99.99% of the time is that it does repeat "Glory to God in the highest and peace to his people on earth" multiple times rather than singing the actual text of the Gloria verbatim straight through (as in the normative Latin version).

I suppose it was written this way to encourage "participatory" congregational singing but it also is needless repetition which has no symbolic value (as did the triplets of things, such as the "Domine non sum dignus" or the priest's signs of the cross over the chalice, emphasizing the Trinity, in the older form of the Mass).

Gene said...

Marc, There are more than a few Priests that I would not want teaching anything to catechumens and candidates. Let's not go there...

Anonymous said...

That's exactly what a "responsorial Gloria" is, a reworking of the setting so it is like a song, with the first stanza repeated as a chorus 6 or 7 times during the Gloria. I, too, hope Francis would supress such Gloria settings as they violate VII's "needless repitition" statement. In my parish, the responsorial Gloria goes on for 4 or 5 minutes, and I always notice by the 3 minute mark, many senior citizens start sitting down before the end, because they can't stand so long.

--- Jack.

Marc said...

Gene, on the other hand, there would be good catechists who might balance out the bad. So those who inquire at a "bad" parish would still be exposed to the correct teachings, which they might not be if the program remains within the "bad" parish alone.

I'm not sure how it works in practice here. I don't think there was an abundance of converts this year in this deanery. But that makes some sense because there are already quite a high number of Catholic people...

Gene said...

I don't know, Marc, I'll have to think about that one...