Saturday, November 19, 2011

One post-vatican II Catholic's rant about the new mass changes.

Next Sunday, we church-going Catholics will experience the biggest change in the English speaking mass in the past 40 some years.


 My inner Catholic school girl -

  • The one that sat through all the gobbeldygook and nonsense that passed as religion class in Jr. high and high school - (You know - the wonderfully expensive Catholic institutions that my mother sacrificed dearly for because she thought she was saving our souls and giving us a good grounding in the faith).
  • The one that made burlap banners with butterflies, flowers and birdies until I wanted to barf.
  • The one that had a nun tell me that My Sweet Lord by George Harrison was perfectly fine to sing at mass because we were singing to the same God.
  • The same one who couldn't explain, even if my life depended on it, why the church was against contraception, abortion, same sex marriage or why priests were celibate. 
  • The girl who spent her first ten years of adult life wandering around in the land of "I'm OK, You're OK without ever darkening the inside of a church. 
That girl wants to throw a temper tantrum.

 In the vernacular of the day I want to throw my hands up and say, WTF!! And I mainly want to address that to the American bishops -past and present.

Because it is my understanding that when the mass was translated into English, that pesky "spirit of Vatican II" eschewed the idea that a direct, proper and, oh, I don't know - ACCURATE, translation was necessary. We could go with "good enough to get by."

 So once again, my generation  missed out on

  • a good solid understanding of the faith, 
  • the beauty of sacraments, 
  •  sacramentals 
  • living the liturgical year 
  • beautiful sacred music 
  • a reverent mass
  • an understanding of apologetics
  •  priests and nuns that looked like priests and nuns and acted like they actually LIKED what they were doing,
  •  charming stories about saints and angels 
  • and a love for being Catholic, 
  • only to endure years of milquetoast teaching and liturgy 
  • topped off with a nasty sex scandal to boot! -
We took it on the chin and missed what we didn't know we were missing. The deeper meaning and the richness of these new translations is the quinetessential example of this!

 The bishops allowed all of this to be taken away from us and it ticks. me. off.

 The fact that we have to go back and re-do the translation of the mass is just a reminder of all we lost and how much we missed out on.  I cannot help but feel a profound sadness that it took until the other side of middle age to get at least part of it back.

 That all said - I agree with the changes, in fact I think they are beautiful and awesome and I am excited about it.

But at the same time I remember. All of us should remember. And in this age of information I pray that the awakened faithful will never allow poor management and bad leadership send us to wander in the desert again.



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