Sunday, 10 March 2013

But why?...

This morning, unusually, we went to the main Parish Mass. I normally eschew it, as I find the music fairly unbearable, so we go to the earlier, music-light Mass.

However, Dominique was out on the razzle last night, as some hedonistic Ceilidh organised by the Methodists or something, and didn't get in till 11.00, so we thought we'd be kind and let her have a lie-in.  It also meant we could have a nice Mothering Day breakfast before Mass for Anna and her Mother.

However,...

Not only was the music dreadful (Freely, Freely - a waltz-time melody that really doesn't work being the low point, I think) but it was also a preparatory Mass for the First Communicants.

That meant that they formed the Offertory Procession, which is fair enough, I suppose (though they could have been rehearsed and given some sense of reverent behaviour to advantage!). But also they were invited to sit on benches in the sanctuary from then until communion.  Needless to say, that precluded their kneeling.  They stood for the Our Father and all held hands, the two in the middle holding the priest's hands.

Why?

Can anyone explain this to me?

I am genuinely mystified.  Our PP is very sound, preaches very good thoughtful sermons, is wise and, I think holy.  He is desperately aware that after their first Holy Communion day, few of these kids will come into the Church again...  Yet he seems stuck in some 70s warp that makes him think that this will help.

I just don't get it...

7 comments:

Ttony said...

Two questions: is the priest in charge of catechesis for FHC? Does the parish use an excessive number of Extraordinary Ministers?

Eccles said...

I don't know it. Is this it?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uz3M-q1sW0Y

Ben Trovato said...

No, there are parish catechists; yes (but in my view any number is excessive). There are two with Chalices at every Sunday Mass.

Recusant said...

We sang Freely, Freely too this morning, it's obviously recommended in the Liturgical Index of the hymnbook to go with the Prodigal Son.
As to why, I am starting to think that it's because people think children (and teenagers) are stupid and that they can only understand the horizontal dimension of the mass (fellowship, banquet, etc) and not the vertical (sacrifice, God...). I have also recently noticed the 'if we want them to stay we have to make them feel good' approach. Perhaps that is also part of the problem.

Ben Trovato said...

Eccles: You are very lucky. Yes, that's the one.

Recusant: yes I understand that (even while I disagree) but I don't think the kids felt good, either, this morning: they looked uncomfortable and embarrassed and (frankly) clueless about what was going on.

Jonathan Marshall said...

Ben,

"Clueless about what was going on" hits the nail on the head.

Abysmal, lay-led 1970s time warp catechesis, in which your apparently very sound PP probably didn't get much of a look-in, is at the bottom of this.

Recusant said...

Eccles: I feel this hymn is deserving of an award. I especially like the third verse which only appears in the latest editions of hymnbooks.

Ben: they probably didn't feel good. The point of this misguided philosophy is not that the children feel good but that the adults think that the children will feel good. (I am extrapolating from a parental complaint regarding the confirmation group I help with. We are 'not supposed to be making them feel bad about themselves', ie mention sin.)