Friday, October 5, 2018

NOT ONLY UNBEAUTIFUL, THE ORDINARY MASS IS UNTRANSCENDENT!

























Archbishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney, Australia  apologized for “unbeautiful and unwelcoming liturgies” that have failed to inspire, for being denied the Church’s treasury of reconciliation, adoration and other devotions, and for “poor preaching, catechesis or spiritual direction that fails to convert.”

What does he mean by unbeautiful liturgies? Today you ask two Catholics what a beautiful liturgy is, you'll get many different answers. It's all subjective today.


Unbeautiful may be a good word, but more specifics are needed:

1. Sloppy
2. Casual
3. Busy, activity oriented
4. Function over prayer, worship, adoration and devotional contemplation
5. Popular devotions completely lacking for 95% of the 25% of Catholics who actually go to Mass

 

In other words instead of just unbeautiful, the Ordinary Mass is just ordinary but worse yet UNTRANSCENDENT!

The fix short of suppressing the Ordinary form:

1. Chant the propers
2. Get rid of the useless repetition of the Responsorial Pslam refrains and recover the Gradual and Tract
3. Ad orientem for the Liturgy of the Eucharist
4. Recovery of proper choreography of the priest and servers
5. Low voice canon
6. Kneeling for Holy Communion

Finally the type of hymns chosen for the Mass must be examined and the proper Catholic spirituality and devotional quality of what is sung must be named and recovered:


For example, the Protestant hymn, “How Great Thou Art” while beautiful, inspirational, robust and singable, is dripping with Protestant devotional piety and ethos. It is not Catholic in its spirituality and devotional aspects—it clearly drips with Protestant sentimentality.

Secular, piano bar, Broadway sounding or trendy, faddish music also makes the liturgy unbeautiful and untranscendent not to mention banal, no matter how much the melody gets the person’s emotional responses moving.

13 comments:

Henry said...

Whatever official documents may claim, the reality is that-- to most Catholics--the Novus Ordo is a mere communion service rather than a holy sacrifice. The steps you recommend would only be decorative, supplying a superficial layer of apparent reverence, but no change in substance. What is perceived as a communion service would likely be perceived as a more reverent communion service. And so it would remain--nothing more than a nice communion service--short of significant changes, including inclusion of a true sacrificial offertory rite and exclusion of protestantised Eucharistic prayers.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

But Henry, but Henry, the Ordinarite's Missal has this but keep in mind in the EF Mass, the offertory and canon are silently prayed so the effect on the congregation is minimal.

But in the OF Mass, contrary to your assertions, the sacrificial aspect of the Mass is present although not as clearly so.

Anonymous said...

"Whatever official documents may claim, the reality is that-- to most Catholics--the Novus Ordo is a mere communion service rather than a holy sacrifice. The steps you recommend would only be decorative, supplying a superficial layer of apparent reverence, but no change in substance. What is perceived as a communion service would likely be perceived as a more reverent communion service. And so it would remain--nothing more than a nice communion service--short of significant changes, including inclusion of a true sacrificial offertory rite and exclusion of protestantised Eucharistic prayers."

Wow. How is it that Henry can be SO much better informed and faithful than popes, cardinals, bishops, theologians, Scripture scholars, liturgists.

I'll tell you how: Neo-gnosticism. Henry knows, but nooooobody else does.

John Nolan said...

Anonymous

Henry is not claiming to be omniscient, or even better informed; he is advancing an opinion - something that you do all the time. However, there is much truth in what he says.

But, hey-ho, let's just make a snide comment. It's easier than addressing substantive issues. Whoever you are, you come across as not just an intellectual pigmy, but a rather nasty piece of work.

Anonymous said...

What is the significance of the "low voice canon." Some reason the laity should not hear it?

I will admit, does seem strange to kneel for the consecration but not to receive communion....

And with regard to singing, guess we'll have to drop "How Great Thou Art" and "Amazing Grace", occasionally sung at the parish in 30327....

John Nolan said...

If anyone wants to know what Archbishop Fisher means by a beautiful liturgy he should go to Youtube and watch the video of Easter Sunday Mass as celebrated by the Archbishop in St Mary's cathedral, Sydney. There is plenty of sung Latin; a polyphonic Kyriale, Gregorian Introit, Sequence (alternatim with organ), Alleluia, Vidi Aquam, Communio, plus an Offertory motet. There is an English setting of the Gradual 'Haec Dies'. The choir (men and boys) is outstanding.

The Archbishop celebrates in English but crucially sings the parts that should be sung, using the chants in the 2011 missal, which are essentially Gregorian. The Roman Canon is used. The Novus Ordo rubrics are carefully followed. No sloppiness.

The liturgy is not self-consciously 'traditional'- women read the first two lections (although the Gospel is sung by the deacon) and there is a hymn at the very start, before the Introit. Yet I suspect that most traditionalists (like myself, who haven't attended an English Mass in two years and frequent the EF more often than I do the OF) would not find much to quibble about.

Anonymous said...

"Whatever official documents may claim, the reality is that-- to most Catholics--the Novus Ordo is a mere communion service rather than a holy sacrifice."

This is a claim to know more than the popes, cardinals, bishops, etc.

Henry has presented nothing "substantive" to which one can respond. He's made a claim and offered nothing to back it up.

It's easy for you to make yourself out as staying above the snide remarks, but you've offered one yourself, nasty piece of work.

John Nolan said...

Anonymous

I'm sure Henry can speak for himself, but I would venture to suggest that an intelligent Catholic layman is more in touch with ordinary Catholics than any number of 'popes, cardinals, bishops, theologians, Scripture scholars, liturgists'.

How? By talking to them and listening to them. And, by the way, inferring that those, like yourself, who use snide and sarcastic comments as a substitute for argument are unpleasant individuals is eminently reasonable.

In your case, this is exacerbated by your penchant for anonymity. It reminds me of those who cut and paste words and letters from newspapers so as not to reveal their handwriting.

Anonymous said...

"I'm sure Henry can speak for himself, but I would venture to suggest that an intelligent Catholic layman is more in touch with ordinary Catholics than any number of 'popes, cardinals, bishops, theologians, Scripture scholars, liturgists'."

But, being "in touch" - whatever that means - isn't the point, now is it.

Henry sets himself up, and you attempt to underpin him, as having a knowledge and understanding of the history of liturgy, liturgical theology, and the practice of liturgy that is superior to 'popes, cardinals, bishops, theologians, Scripture scholars, liturgists'."

And, because you share his liturgical predilections, you agree with him. No surprise there.

When Henry presents anything of substance - merely using "Protestant" as a generalized term of derision is not substantial- there may be something to argue against.

"I don't like it and I don't have to!" is pre-adolescent rant, not a substantive position.

John Nolan said...

'I don't like it and I don't have to!'

Whom are you quoting? Not Henry, not me, nor anyone else on this blog, apart from yourself. Demolishing your own straw man takes little effort.

Marc said...

Henry sets himself up, and you attempt to underpin him, as having a knowledge and understanding of the history of liturgy, liturgical theology, and the practice of liturgy that is superior to 'popes, cardinals, bishops, theologians, Scripture scholars, liturgists'."

I’m curious why this is, according to your context, axiomatic. It seems very possible that Henry — and John — have an understanding of these issues that meets or exceeds clerics and scholars. To suggest otherwise assumes that he ordained necessarily have greater knowledge than laity: that is clericalism. It also suggests that degrees and scholarship necessarily equate to more knowledge and expertise: that is elitist and not borne out by experience.

Anonymous said...

"It seems very possible that Henry — and John — have an understanding of these issues that meets or exceeds clerics and scholars."

It is possible, but I think it is highly unlikely. But what makes you think it is "very possible?"

Those who have significant academic training in an area are, it would seem to me, to be better trained in that area than those who do not.

When you need a medical issue attended to, do you go to someone who has significant academic and clinical training in medicine? I suspect you do. When you need someone to sort out your business' books, do you seek a CPA? I suspect you do.

John Nolan said...

And, of course, academics are renowned for their understanding of ordinary people and what they believe and think.