On Sunday I went to the teen mass at my Parish. I usually try to avoid this mass in order to minimize temptation to impatience. However, due to family scheduling, it was my only option. So off to mass I went with my two oldest children.
Upon arriving I saw that the celebrant was to be Father “Look at Me!” (Henceforth referred to as Fr. LaM). I have previously blogged on Fr. LaM, and how this frequently visiting priest previously tempted me to join the Liturgicops. When I saw that it was to be Fr. LaM, I had to pinch myself in an effort to remind myself that he is a priest of God and I should be grateful and patient.
I am grateful. I am not patient. I am grateful for all those who dedicate their lives to God’s service, but I simply cannot take the nonsense that goes on in the liturgy today. Early in the mass as we arrived at the Gloria, the youth choir (which is entirely composed by middle aged persons) broke into some ridiculously inappropriate rock version of the Gloria that is impossible to follow. I have made it my custom that when they do this, I simply bow my head and say the Gloria to myself.
When the ‘youth choir’ was about half way through, Fr. LaM loudly interrupted and yelled “STOP! Stop the music!” Startled, I looked up from my prayer to see what could possibly be happening. Did someone faint? Is someone having a heart attack? My children anxiously looked at me searching for reassurance that everything was alright. I looked around, but didn’t see anything.
Fr. LaM paused, made sure that he had every one’s undivided attention. When he was assured that all eyes were on him, he bellowed “I can’t hear you singing. I want to hear you singing! Let’s sing it again, this time loudly. Let’s take it again, from the top!”
Fellow parishioners looked on in disbelief. I mumbled, “Oh no he didn’t”. My children looked at me with eyes that asked “Is this normal?”. I thought in response, “All too normal these days”
Fr. LaM had suddenly remembered the most important thing about the mass, it is all about him. He simply could not let that moment pass.
This is why I simply cannot wait for the Motu Proprio. I know that it will not be a miracle cure. I know the TLM is not always done well. Liturgy was not perfect before 1970 and will not be perfect after the Motu Proprio. But I would so much prefer a mass focused on Jesus and not the shock jock at the front of the room.