Thursday, July 22, 2010

Why I don't want a mass of the resurrection

No, this is not a trick post and I don't mean not now.

I have gotten to the point in my life that I have seen and heard about deaths that are "expected" due to old age and too many that are unexpected due to youth and or accident/tragedy. One of the aspects of the protestant church that has crept into or influenced some Catholic attitudes is the funeral as a celebration of the person's life and if the person was know to be religious or have a faith life, to celebrate them "going home, being with the Father, angels etc. The church has a deliberate approach to the process of discerning if a person is a saint- which means they are in heaven. Discernment, per the Merriam- Webster dictionary-the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure. So, unless the death is of a baptized infant or child under the age of reason, the Catholic approach to a funeral should be that we pray for the repose of that person's soul and a funeral should even remind us that one day we too will die. The point of this, is the blank is with the Lord now, attitude means there does not seem to be a knowledge that we should pray for the repose of the poor souls in purgatory.

I have thought about this topic for some time, but what really brought it to mind is a tragic death of a young person that happened earlier this year. I will be obscure on purpose as I don't want to identify the person. Because of the circumstances there were news reports of the death, aftermath and funeral and several reports discussed they ways the deceased was remembered during the mass. Based on the reports, there seemed to be an approach that the person was with God. That may be so and I pray it is so, but I daresay most if not almost all of the people there did not know what was really going on in the interior life of the person. Also, one of the tragedies of our culture is that there are mortal sins that people have convinced themselves are ok or no sin. It is an act of charity to pray for the dead. When I was in RCIA, our pastor explained purgatory in a way that made sense right away. If someone stole $100 from you that you needed and you caught the person, and they were repentant, you might forgive them, but you will still want your $100 back. Consequences- they are still there even with forgiveness.

So, the reason I don't want a mass of the resurrection and that I want a TLM funeral mass (complete with Dies Irae), is I know even if God willing, I persevere in the race, as St. Paul, I will need prayers for the repose of my soul.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Why Orange is not a Liturgically Correct color

I recall seeing a bit on the news the morning of the World Cup final and thinking “that has got to be (I hope) an Anglican Dutch priest not a Catholic priest”. Alas, I was wrong.

Bishop Joseph Punt of Haarlem-Amsterdam has suspended a parish priest, Father Paul Vlaar, who wore orange vestments-- the color of the Netherlands’ World Cup team-- during Sunday Mass on July 11. Father Vlaar also acted as a goalkeeper during Mass, standing in front of a goal as a parishioner kicked a soccer ball down the aisle.

“On Sunday 11 July, Pastor Paul Vlaar of Obdam celebrated the Holy Eucharist in the spirit of the Football World Cup, wearing an orange chasuble, and did insufficient justice, in text and form, to the sanctity of the Eucharist,” a diocesan statement noted. “The footage of this has caused indignation among faithful here and abroad.”

The statement continued:

In the past the bishop had impressed upon Fr Vlaar not to mix the Holy Eucharist with profane events. The pastor has said to fully support this and promised to abide. The pastor’s pastoral zeal and commitment are not under discussion. Following this new incident the bishop again met with Fr. Vlaar, imposed an immediate time of reflection on him and relieved him of his priestly duties for the time being. Things will once again be considered at a later date.

And this is a blog by a Dutch Catholic blogger discussing the issue further:

I did follow the World Cup a bit. Thanks to my DS and sitting on the sidelines of several years of soccer games, I learned to like the sport. Yes, I know more about and follow American football, but I do enjoy soccer and we used to go see the Columbus Crew play at least a couple of times a year when we were still in Ohio.

In full disclosure, I am also a Cleveland Browns fan and I also tend to cheer for the other Cleveland teams (Indians, Cavaliers) so I KNOW from sports drought. I mean, the last time the Browns were the world champions in professional (American) football, there was no Super Bowl. I still hate Denver and the names Byner and Elway still make me cringe. That being said, on that joyful Sunday I hope to experience when my Brownies are in the Super Bowl, I want to attend mass in the morning and prayerfully participate in mass and receive the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament from a priest in the correct liturgical color of vestments for the day and in a church with the liturgically correct altar cloths. I don’t care if I am at the Cathedral in downtown Cleveland; I don’t want the priest in orange and brown. Mass in the Catholic church is worship. Boosterism belongs in a stadium.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

John Andrew "Andyman" Davis- Requiescat in Pace

This is a detour from the ususal focus of my humble blog. Please pray for the repose of the soul of John Andrew Davis- husband, father of three young boys, dj for CD 101 in Columbus, OH, parishioner of St. Timothy Church and active community member and founder of the Andyman-athon on CD 101.

I have loved music since I was a child and used to sneak listen to the am clock radio in my bedroom. I was into what is now called classic rock in my teens, but in college I got interested in what was then called new wave, alternative etc- The Police, Squeeze, The Smiths, Depeche Mode et al. I continued preferring that style of music and in the early 1990's in Columbus a new radio station started- CD 101, which played both "classic" alternative and the newer genres of grunge and other music that you just did not hear on regular commercial radio. For many years, Andyman was my afternoon drive time radio company as he had the 3-6pm slot. He also started a radio telethon called the Andyman-athon during the Christmas season to raise money for kid's charities. He was also a noted supporter of local music and unknown bands- in a time when most commercial radio is focused on the music with broadest appeal regardless of its artistic merit.

Andyman drowned this past Saturday while on vacation with his wife and children in Michigan. Please pray for the repose of his soul and please keep his wife, children and family in your prayers.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Flos Carmeli

Yesterday was very busy and I did not have a chance to post on the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel (Solemnity for those of us who are Carmelites-Ancient Observance and Discalced). I was able to go to mass, Deo Gratias, but one year I really hope to be able to go to a Carmelite Monastery to go to a mass celebrated as a solemnity. They masses I have attended since I have been here have been little more than memorials of the feast. The Brown Scapular is such a powerful sacramental and a great gift of Our Lady.

I was also thinking about feasts of Our Lady and I realized I could think of a fairly well known and celebrated feast of Our Lady for every month of the year except April.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Deo Gratias

It has been another busy couple of months. My laptop is still clinging to life, but only for some web-surfing, which makes it difficult to post. I am going to try to work on that as I would like to post consistently.

DH did start working full time again in late May!!!! It is a contract position so I am continuing to pray that the contract continues! DS finished his sophomore year and is now at Christendom's Latin camp for a week. DD is having a fun summer and is very busy being 3. Her will is really surfacing so trying to work on channeling that force.

On the Latin Mass Front-

I was blessed to be able to attend the Musica Sacra XX conference in Pittsburgh last month (stay churchy my friends). Despite the fact that Pittsburgh has way too many hills one has to walk up- it was a grace filled week. I really learned a lot and my mom came to help with DD so that was fun. A week of masses that show the range of beautiful music that we have been given over the centuries in the Roman Catholic Church. The first mass was a novus ordo in English with chant ordinary and propers written by Richard Rice and it was celebrated ad orientam. Clear proof that we can have English masses with the introit, gradual, offertory and communion antiphons (not hymns). The rest of the masses during the week were in Latin- tlm and novus ordo. We also prayed/chanted morning prayer and compline each day and by the end of the week, all in Latin.

I will actually get to what I have learned as we are starting rehearsals the week after next, for the chant schola for the tlm. We are going to have to start out with hymns with a low mass as Father is still working with the altar servers to get them to the point where they can serve a missa cantata. We will start singing on the Feast of the Assumption.