Priest Leaves Parish
  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 417
    Sad day. Prayers for the good Father.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    Could there be clearer evidence of the shabby and shameless il-liberality of 'liberals', or of the un-Vatican II-ness of too many self-styled 'Vatican II' folk? This tale may, indeed, be one of the milder ones that could be told of in this regard. If these people were true Vatican II people they would have welcomed the good father's musical and liturgical acts, for they are just what the council admonished and mandated. What a poor, poor excuse for a bishop, one who didn't stand behind his orthodox priest and straighten these wonderful people out about Vatican II.
    Thanked by 1dad29
  • RomanticStringsRomanticStrings
    Posts: 310
    Once again, I reiterate that chant cannot be "pre-Vatican II," since the purpose of calling it out in V2 was to ensure that its use would be more widespread.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 8,195
    I have met this priest and thought well of him. This is sad.
  • kevinfkevinf
    Posts: 982
    Sorry to intervene but this story is much more complicated than the article professes. The media has failed to tell all of the story.
  • How incredibly sad. I pray for more priests like this, and also for this good priest's health and the well being of the community. I also pray for further conversion to the good teachings of Vatican II on Chant as the principal music of the Church, and polyphony.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 8,195
    Sorry to intervene but this story is much more complicated than the article professes. The media has failed to tell all of the story.


    Where do we find the rest of the story?
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 756
    This is very sad indeed. Is this the same priest who was promoting all the new liturgical art in his parish?
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    Part 1

    When the music director was relieved of her duties, the article said, most of the choir resigned.


    First of all, that's to be expected when you replace a music director: most of the time, the choir joined in the first place because of the people either running it or already in it. Also, it is sometimes necessary to relieve a person of their duties in order for the administration to further his or her agenda. I know this personally, as it happened to me, and has also happened to many others on this forum.

    A group calling itself Appalachian Catholics in the Smoky Mountain Region said in a statement earlier this year that Riehl and some other conservative priests assigned by Jugis to small parishes in the mountains “seem to be more intent on taking the church back to pre-Vatican ll days rather than minister to the people."


    1. The Mass is not about "the people."

    2. The statement is begging the question, as it assumes that the pre-Vatican II days were worse for the Church than the years that followed. It is also begging the question because it assumes that the priest's sole purpose is to "minister to the people," but also does not define what that means. I propose that it means what is commonly seen in modernist parishes throughout the country: giving "the people" what they demand instead of what they need. As a colleague of mine is fond of saying, "You live in a democracy, but you don't worship in one."
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    Part 2

    "They seem to be steeped in doctrine and theology, but are unwilling to participate in ecumenical activities, and are lacking in compassion, love and mercy. They are doing the job of the theologian, but not the job of the pastor. This is directly opposed to what Pope Francis and Vatican II are teaching us.”


    1. "Ecumenical" is a misused term, especially by many who like to see themselves as followers of the Second Vatican Council. Here is the dictionary definition of the term:


    1.
    general; universal.
    2.
    pertaining to the whole Christian church.
    3.
    promoting or fostering Christian unity throughout the world.
    4.
    of or relating to a movement (ecumenical movement) especially among Protestant groups since the 1800s, aimed at achieving universal Christian unity and church union through international interdenominational organizations that cooperate on matters of mutual concern.
    5.
    interreligious or interdenominational:
    an ecumenical marriage.
    6.
    including or containing a mixture of diverse elements or styles; mixed:



    The first definition wouldn't be out of the context of the Catholic Church, as Catholic derives from Katholikos, meaning the same thing: universal.

    The second definition seems to suggest that the entire Christian world, including Protestants would be included under the term "ecumenical," but that also depends on what one considers a "Christian." Some consider Protestants to not be part of the whole Christian church, because they have cut themselves off at some point in time from the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church that Christ Himself founded on Earth, the Church that we now call the Catholic Church.

    The third definition is a noble goal indeed, and how the Second Vatican Council went about it is beyond the scope of this discussion. See Unitatis Redintegratio

    The fourth definition is a bit more telling to me. It suggests that the "ecumenical movement" is a Protestant movement.

    The fifth definition seems to be the one most commonly used these days: to refer to anything that is interdenominational or interreligious.

    The sixth definition doesn't make sense from a purely religious standpoint, unless one also wishes to use "ecumenical" interchangeably with "eclectic."

    I'm not entirely sure that the author(s) of the letter to His Excellency understood what the term "ecumenical" means.



    Thanked by 1eft94530
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    Part 3

    "They seem to be steeped in doctrine and theology, but are unwilling to participate in ecumenical activities, and are lacking in compassion, love and mercy. They are doing the job of the theologian, but not the job of the pastor. This is directly opposed to what Pope Francis and Vatican II are teaching us.”


    2. Begging the question again, as it assumes that the definitions of "love," "compassion," and "mercy," are unequivocably understood by anyone reading the letter.

    Here we go:

    Love:



    1.
    a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
    2.
    a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, as for a parent, child, or friend.
    3.
    sexual passion or desire.
    4.
    a person toward whom love is felt; beloved person; sweetheart.
    5.
    (used in direct address as a term of endearment, affection, or the like):
    Would you like to see a movie, love?
    6.
    a love affair; an intensely amorous incident; amour.
    7.
    sexual intercourse; copulation.
    8.
    (initial capital letter) a personification of sexual affection, as Eros or Cupid.
    9.
    affectionate concern for the well-being of others:
    the love of one's neighbor.
    10.
    strong predilection, enthusiasm, or liking for anything:
    her love of books.
    11.
    the object or thing so liked:
    The theater was her great love.
    12.
    the benevolent affection of God for His creatures, or the reverent affection due from them to God.
    13.
    Chiefly Tennis. a score of zero; nothing.
    14.
    a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter L.


    The first definition cannot be measured outside of a personal relationship. Unless the author(s) of the letter simply do not feel like the Pastor had "a profoundly tender, affectionate passion" for them, they have not used the term under the first definition. Also, it is a matter of feelings, which are by their very nature unreasonable (cannot be reasoned; illogical).

    By the way, for "unreasonable," I am using the following:



    1.
    not reasonable or rational; acting at variance with or contrary to reason; not guided by reason or sound judgment; irrational:
    an unreasonable person.
    2.
    not in accordance with practical realities, as attitude or behavior; inappropriate:
    His Bohemianism was an unreasonable way of life for one so rich.
    3.
    excessive, immoderate, or exorbitant; unconscionable:
    an unreasonable price; unreasonable demands.
    4.
    not having the faculty of reason.



    I am using the first definition, for the statement "not guided by reason or sound judgment," because you cannot use rational arguments to defend or impugn a person's feelings.


    The second definition also is a matter of feelings, which are by their very nature unreasonable (cannot be reasoned; illogical). If they are using the term under this definition, they are implying that the priest is there to be their friend, which I'm not entirely sure is in keeping with his professional office.

    The third definition is inappropriate to the situation.

    The fourth definition is inappropriate to the situation.

    The fifth definition is irrelevant to the situation.

    The sixth definition is inappropriate to the situation.

    The seventh definition is inappropriate to the situation.

    The eighth definition is inappropriate to the situation.

    The ninth definition is exactly what the priest should be doing, and as we all do, per Christ's command: we care for our neighbors and their well being. This, however, sometimes means you have to violate other definitions of the term.

    The tenth definition could have something to do with the situation, but it depends greatly upon what this priest acted "without love" towards, or how he showed them that he acted in this manner. What caused them to say this? That is why their statement is still begging the question: they haven't explained themselves, they have only made accusations.

    The eleventh definition is in tandem with the tenth.

    The twelfth definition is not relevant to this situation, as God's love is eternal. I am going to give the benefit of the doubt to the author(s) and assume they are not stating that God is not showing them His love.

    The thirteenth definition is not relevant to this situation.

    The fourteenth definition is not relevant to this situation.

    So for "love" there are four different definitions that could possibly apply to the situation. Which definition did the author(s) intend? There is a 50% chance that it is feelings based, which again are not reasonable (unable to be reasoned; illogical).
    Thanked by 1eft94530
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    Part 4

    "They seem to be steeped in doctrine and theology, but are unwilling to participate in ecumenical activities, and are lacking in compassion, love and mercy. They are doing the job of the theologian, but not the job of the pastor. This is directly opposed to what Pope Francis and Vatican II are teaching us.”


    For “mercy:”



    1.
    compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one's power; compassion, pity, or benevolence:
    Have mercy on the poor sinner.
    2.
    the disposition to be compassionate or forbearing:
    an adversary wholly without mercy.
    3.
    the discretionary power of a judge to pardon someone or to mitigate punishment, especially to send to prison rather than invoke the death penalty.
    4.
    an act of kindness, compassion, or favor:
    She has performed countless small mercies for her friends and neighbors.
    5.
    something that gives evidence of divine favor; blessing:



    The first definition suggests an attitude of kindness towards someone in one’s charge, such as the population of a parish in this case. If the author(s) is using the first definition, it would seem to suggest that they are stating that the priest was not kind to them.

    The second definition refers to forgiveness. If the author(s) is using the second definition, it would seem to suggest that they are stating that the priest is unforgiving.

    The third definition refers to the power to “mitigate punishment.” In this case, the power the priest has is that of hearing confessions and imparting absolution for sins. There are two logical possibilities here: 1. if the author(s) is using the third definition, it would seem to suggest that they are stating that the priest refuses to hear confessions and/or will not give absolution in certain situations; or 2. if the author(s) is using the third definition, it would seem to suggest that some other form of “punishment” that has not been defined has been placed upon them and that the priest will not mitigate it.

    The fourth definition has three significant parts. The first part is the “act of kindness,” which again if the author(s) is using the fourth definition, would seem to suggest they are accusing the priest of not being kind to them. The second is the “compassion,” which we will delve into in the next part, because the letter also used that term specifically. The third part is “favor,” which if the author(s) is using the fourth definition in this manner, would suggest that they are upset because the priest will not show them favor.

    The fifth definition fits exactly what a priest should do. He does this by administering the Sacraments, which are signs of God’s favor. If the author(s) is using the fifth definition, it would seem to suggest that they are stating that the priest is not administering the Sacraments.

    For “compassion:”



    1.
    a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.



    The only definition refers to “sympathy and sorrow” for someone who has been “stricken by misfortune,” along with the desire to “alleviate the suffering.” There are a few items here: 1. empathy for the sufferer; 2. a “misfortune” that has befallen someone; and 3. the desire to relieve the suffering. By stating that the priest has not acted with compassion, the author(s) is stating that he does not empathize with those who are suffering, and does not have the desire to alleviate that suffering. A second possibility exists, and that is that the “misfortune” described in the definition is one that the author(s) believes has been put upon them by the priest himself, and that he is unwilling to change the situation.
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  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    Part 5

    "They seem to be steeped in doctrine and theology, but are unwilling to participate in ecumenical activities, and are lacking in compassion, love and mercy. They are doing the job of the theologian, but not the job of the pastor. This is directly opposed to what Pope Francis and Vatican II are teaching us.”


    It seems that the author(s) have used these terms carelessly, and without love, mercy, nor compassion for the priest, his station, his office, his life, nor his livelihood. These are very serious accusations to levy against a priest, as the terms form the core of his work. I sincerely hope that the author(s) have substantial proof and evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the priest and that this is not motivated by simple, irrational feelings.

    3. It is very clear that the author(s) does not understand what the Second Vatican Council actually said regarding the liturgy. His Holiness has not to my knowledge issued any ex cathedra teachings that would require our obedience. However, it is very clear that people are paying attention to what His Holiness is saying, but it is also clear from the definitions above and how they have possibly been used that they don’t fully understand it.



    “It is with a heavy heart that I must inform you that I have decided, of my own free will and my own instigation, to resign my position here at St. John’s,” he wrote. “I have found that I am worn out or burned out and for my own well being need to take a sabbatical. There was no incident or event, just a feeling that I need some time away from full parish ministry. I have absolutely no questions or doubts about my vocation to the Priesthood of Christ.”
    It seems likely that Riehl will leave the Diocese of Charlotte, too. Asked if Riehl, who had previously been assigned to a diocese in Tennessee, will get another assignment from Jugis after his sabbatical, Diocese spokesman David Hains said, “I don’t think so.”
    Hains was also asked whether Jugis had directed Riehl to resign. “What (Riehl) has in the statement is self-explanatory,” Hains said.



    I left the names in because anyone could click the link for the article and have direct access to them.

    I find this to be very telling. The statement made by the priest is an attempt to leave a positive impression as he leaves a negative situation. It’s a public relations move. The response from the diocesan spokesperson indicates that the bishop did ask the priest to resign over the uproar, as he will not be given another position in the diocese, and when directly asked if the bishop asked the priest to resign, the diocesan spokesperson avoided the question.

    This appears to me to be a selfish attempt to upend a person simply because they want to have Mass their way. Sadly, I’ve heard many stories that are exactly like this. Consider the case of Fr. Robideau from a few years back. It was the same situation: the bishop placed a traditionalist priest in a parish which had experienced many of the problems of modernism. The priest did what he understood he was supposed to do, incurred the ire of much of the parish population, who wrote a letter to the bishop attempting to get him removed. The bishop initially refused, but Fr. Robideau was eventually moved to a small traditionalist parish elsewhere. As church musicians, we are all too familiar with this situation: any attempt to bring about traditional options results in one’s removal, because you incur the ire of parishioners who absolutely have no love, mercy, nor compassion for you, the Church, nor Her Sacred Traditions.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 427
    Thanks @ClergetKubisz for that analysis, but the problem seems not just relate to liturgy. The two paragraphs before the one you analyse allege inter alia
    A lack of responsibility is evident, even with regard to pastoral care of the dying. In one parish in our region, this happened at least four times in less than two years and two parishioners died without the sacraments. Likewise, funerals have not been scheduled in a timely manner, not allowing adequate input from the family of the deceased in the funeral arrangements. To date there has been no apology or acknowledgement, or even a response from the bishop in the diocese where this occurred.
    (Not neccessarily relating to this priest)
    Of course there may well be much more to this, some relatives may seek pastoral services for those who are known never to darken the door of the church, or in these parts people who are not known to the parish community at all.
    Thanked by 1ClergetKubisz
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,715
    @afhawkins, good point. If I had the chance to speak with the author, I would ask about "adequate input from the family of the deceased," and what constitutes "a timely manner," in regards to funerals.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    A couple of cautions:

    First, we don't know the whole story.

    Second, according to canon law, a bishop has not only the right but the duty to remove pastors for several good reasons.

    (Edit): Just to be clear, I don't have any inside information.
  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    To adumbrate Kathy's first point: I would not encourage on-line dissections of situations of this sort, especially as grist to make larger points (however valid the larger points may or may not be).
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    This is but one of many tales of a similar nature that are or could be related on this forum. One is always left wondering why these good bishops don't take the trouble to correspond to the begrudged populace, or even take the trouble to make an episcopal visitation to them and inform them in no uncertain terms just what Vatican II's vision of liturgy and music actually was/is. One may note, further, that it seems to him that the party who are actually without 'compassion, mercy, and love' are the begrudged themselves. As for being 'un-oecumenical', well, insofar as the begrudged have little but contempt for the actual musical and liturgical vision of an oecumenical council, it is laughable that they hurl this accusation at others.

    As Kathy and Kevin say, we do not know the whole story. True, we don't. It may be that this priest has some very human shortcomings (don't we all?). These, it would seem to me, hardly make saints out of these charming people who hold the real Vatican II in contempt.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen hilluminar
  • noel jones, aagonoel jones, aago
    Posts: 6,276
    As Kathy and Kevin say, we do not know the whole story. True, we don't. It may be that this priest has some very human shortcomings (don't we all?). These, it would seem to me, hardly make saints out of these charming people who hold the real Vatican II in contempt.


    Well said.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    On the other hand, a tale such as this is not rare - - -

    Parish has liturgy and music fulfilling the vision of Vatican II -
    Chant, polyphony, anthems, organ, hymnody, propers, hearty congregational song, etc.
    New priest fires choirmaster and organist, institutes so-called 'contemporary' music with guitars, combo, and such. (Without, it may be added, 'stepping stones' and a 'pastoral approach'.)
    People complain (timidly).
    Priest doesn't budge, let alone resign.
    Bishop doesn't remove him.
    (Too bad, people.)

    It only seems to work one way, doesn't it!?
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 771
    Yes. It unequivocally only works one way.
  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    No, it doesn't *unequivocally* work only one way. I can think of at least one prominent place that had "chant, polyphony, anthems, organ, hymnody, propers, hearty congregational song, etc." for decades where there was a series of defenestrations that were not at all aimed in the direction of contemporary music.

    Gifts are not evenly distributed. My mother long ago taught me that the priests who were great preachers weren't necessarily great in the confessional, and vice versa, and everyone's gifts usually come in the context of other limitations - part of our life's work is coming to grips with our own limitations. The more gifted a person is, the more [overconfident, blinkered, arrogant or insert another term in that family of characteristics] they may be (especially in the first half of their careers) and need to be broken to see their limitations more clearly. There are a lot of people in ministry who lack sufficient people skills (yes, and part of that is learning how to deal with nasty people), and, unfortunately, that will likely break them at some point. (There are situations where I've gotten a sense that a bishop has put priest N in place Y because the bishop thought place Y would be resilient enough to survive what would likely happen over N's term there, and that N would end up being a better priest for it.)

    The Catholic system is especially prone to this problem because:

    i) Pastors have a lot of power on paper but don't realize they effectively have to earn their authority in order to use it fruitfully (this seems to be a particular problem with Americans, who pay more attention to the surface than way down underneath the surface; it's more second-nature for Italians...and Catholicism is an Italian culture more than an American one....);
    ii) Laity don't have many means of lodging effective objections, so they have been habituated to doing in deeply passive-aggressive ways (withholding money, gossip, absence, et cet.), and tend to use pastors as figures to laud or decry (I remember a rector of an oratory I once was active in saying that "Saturday nights are Burn-The-Rector Night") - it's very hub-and-spoke with no wheel.

    "seems" is just that.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    ...And, of course, guitar and combo leaders NEEEHVER become 'overconfident, blinkered, arrogant or insert another term...'. Why, they're so sure of (and full of) themselves that they couldn't imagine that 'pastoral approach' and 'going slowly' could ever apply to them. They are like the fellow my grandmother used to caution against having weed the garden - because he didn't know the flowers from the weeds. (Except that these fellows very often do know, and exhibit a distinctly mindless preference for the weeds.)

    One can understand an apologetic that takes note of the imperfections which some church musicians (as opposed to combo leaders and 'contemporary music' types) may have, but not one that carries on as if they were alone in not having been immaculately conceived.

    This, it seems to me, is more one way and non sequiturial illogic. By all means, let us (US, of all people) beat up on a musician who may (or may not) be somewhat exhilarated that he or she has developed a music program that resembles the vision of Vatican II - and conclude that he or she had it coming for being too happy with what she had.
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  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    MJO

    "...And, of course, guitar and combo leaders NEEEHVER become 'overconfident, blinkered, arrogant or insert another term...'." Um, I neither said nor implied that. In fact, I've seen the behavior across the spectrum. My comment was universally worded in that regard. Stand down from the umbrage machine. Please.

    I will add, for good measure, that just because people are howling about or at someone doesn't mean that person is a white martyr (it *might* mean it, it might be well deserved, or, more typically, things are a mixed bag). The "if people are mad at me, I must be doing something right" school of leadership is no more reliable among Church Folk than among the Fortune 500. Your ship may desperately need and overhaul - and you may be still be the wrong person to make that happen, even if your ideas are rainbows of wunnerfulness.

  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    I must be forgiven for detecting an inherent bias against any fellow who is accomplishing something noteworthy, feeling good about, being disliked for it, and is said, therefore, to be ipso facto blameworthy. All the moreso if a priest (or howling congregants) rids him or her of his good work and replaces him or her with a musical nemesis - just because, all along, that was what he and/or they wanted... the antithesis of Vatican II's vision.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    I think Liam suggested something very sensible above.

    Why don't we avoid talking about specific cases, and instead focus on certain general trends?
    Thanked by 2melofluent CHGiffen
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    Whilst not altogether agreeing that the discussion of 'specific cases' is a thing rigourously to be eschewed, I'll invite Kathy to inaugurate her 'focus on certain general trends', which focus we may then expound upon to our hearts' contentment.

    (I'll not even mention that there is a 'general trend' for a certain sort of priests and un-Vatican II people to sack or make life miserable for musicians who are accomplishing what the council laid before us in order that they might impose what the council didn't lay before us... I shant mention that - maybe, even, it's not a 'general trend' but 'established widespread procedure' - of which this 'specific case' is but one example.)

    I'll begin -
    On a more positive note, though, I shall offer the observation that there does seem to be a 'general trend' toward a much more positive attitude about chant in some quarters than has been the case for decades. Who would ever have thought that even the NPM would give chant its blessing (though, admittedly, as a side dish). There does seem to be an impressive number of churches purchasing organs, and numerous choirmasters and organists who are making admirable headway in realising the vision of Vatican II. Scholas, both of rank beginners and old guard veterans seem to be a growing phenomenon. There seems to be a 'general trend' whereby people who hear chant done really well are more likely to 'like it' than in the recent past. (People who don't sing it very well are a poor advertisement for it.) Further, until very recent times, certain of our major publishers would have given no consideration to publishing chant introits and communions. This is a trend which we can only hope will blossom into complete sets of propers (all five of them!). While all this is praiseworthy, the 'general trend' of far, far too many of all ranks of clerics and lay (without a shred of authority to do so, one might add!) to obstruct and forbid the very musical and liturgical vision which Vatican II laid before us goes on with shameless determination. For the growing numbers who would fulfill the council's vision, though, enough Te Deums cannot be sung.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    I'm going to start a thread.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    Hymn tune graduals? Not sure...
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    Why not hie to your above suggestion and name the thread something like 'Positive Trends in Liturgy and Music'?
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    I'm not one to overwrite someone. Usually I go for the peaceable workaround.
    Thanked by 1melofluent
  • Reval
    Posts: 148
    I like the term "liturgical whiplash". I wonder whether bishops would be better off to (secretly) categorize parishes, (traddie, contemporary, etc), then distribute priests accordingly. That way no one has to get knickers in a twist, parishioners don't have to leave in a huff, or force pastors out.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    I can think of one case several miles away from me where the bishop dealt with intra-parochial division (in part involving Neo-Cats) by assigning a more traditionally oriented priest who was orthogonal to the division, leaving everyone baffled for a while. A rather darkly wry sense of humor to that one....
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    There's a short story along those lines, rather tragic in my view, called The Warm Sand.
  • I wonder whether bishops would be better off to (secretly) categorize parishes, (traddie, contemporary, etc), then distribute priests accordingly. That way no one has to get knickers in a twist,


    One Faith, not multiple faiths.

    Should people self-segregate, so that the faith they hear agrees with their own prejudices, or should they be taught the faith, as handed on by the Apostles and taught and practiced by the saints?
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  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,648
    Well, it's an unusual time.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    Well, it's an unusual time.

    It is, indeed.
    We aren't burning people at the stake for heretical views and behaviours any more.
    If we were, the wood required to burn them all would leave the Congo, the Amazon, and the Black Forest treeless.
    I, for one, am glad that we have advanced beyond such savage, hateful, and paranoid ways.
  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    Well, Christians aren't....
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  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    No, you're quite right: they really aren't.
  • Jackson,

    We could just use the works of Fr. James Martin to start the fire -- which would accomplish two purposes. Or Amoris Laetitia.
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  • Liam
    Posts: 2,947
    It would encourage more people to buy both.
  • Liam,

    I hadn't thought of that. Thank you for the corrective.
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,278
    "Should people self-segregate..."
    Irrelevant; they DO. This has always been an issue for the Church in America. Generally, the segregation has been on cultural lines (Irish at this parish, Poles at another). Segregation on the basis of orthodoxy is more problematic. But that's not primarily what we have here.As much as we love an advocate for them, ad orientem and chant aren't tenets of the Faith; they're cultural practices. Do I think the Church should have one liturgical culture? Sure. But it never has.
    Thanked by 1melofluent
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,166
    Facing ad orientem is a whole lot more than a cultural practice. Notice that the Byzantine practice is to place the sanctuary at the eastern end. This arrangement is better than simply the priest facing east, which is the minimum standard, though I find the development of liturgical east to be preferable than the basilica arrangement.

    I find that the liturgy straddles the line betweent the deposit of faith itself and what upholds the deposit but can be modified by ecclesiastical authority. To say it is clearly outside of Sacred Tradition is to accept change in a manner castigated by all levels of the church before 1911, and it shows an ignorance of the debate at the Council of Trent. We know more about the history than they did, but even if the Apostles did not write, say, the Roman Canon, the conciliar fathers knew that they could not tinker with the tradition as was handed on to them.
  • ContinuousbassContinuousbass
    Posts: 297
    That they had to let go of the director of music... was that because she was upset or incapable of adapting? A change like that would completely devastate someone who has no knowledge of actual church music.
  • teachermom24
    Posts: 228
    Parish has liturgy and music fulfilling the vision of Vatican II -
    Chant, polyphony, anthems, organ, hymnody, propers, hearty congregational song, etc.
    New priest fires choirmaster and organist, institutes so-called 'contemporary' music with guitars, combo, and such. (Without, it may be added, 'stepping stones' and a 'pastoral approach'.)
    People complain (timidly).
    Priest doesn't resign.
    Bishop doesn't remove him.
    (Too bad, people.)


    This happened exactly like this in our parish, except he didn't fire the organist completely, just reduced him to two Masses per month to make room for guitars the other two Sundays. But the choirmaster was fired and organist given script to play from each week (sans "Chant, polyphony, anthems, hymnody, propers, hearty congregational song, etc.")

    I wish it could work the other way, but I have never seen a garbage dump replaced by a cathedral. Iconoclasm is a one-way street.
    Thanked by 2MarkS CHGiffen
  • ContinuousbassContinuousbass
    Posts: 297
    but I have never seen a garbage dump replaced by a cathedral.
    Those are the ones God visits most frequently.
  • ad orientem and chant aren't tenets of the Faith


    This is an arguable point. Lex Orandi Lex Credendi , if it means anything beyond the literal, surely means that tampering with the formal prayer of the church changes the belief being professed. Not all "personal restorations" are created equal, but turning one's back intentionally surely must place somewhere near the top of the list.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 4,908
    And further, Chris -
    One could, had one a mind to, argue that such things as ad orientam and, even, chant, are inherited expressions of a profound bequeathed 'orandi', and that (as you say) 'intentionally' jettisoning them, negating their import, carries its own counter prayer, if not its own 'anti-prayer'.

    Does it ever occur to those responsible for thumbing their noses at a profoundly prayerful two-thousand-year-old tradition pregnant with theological wealth and obeisance to God that if the people are (and they are) ad orientem then the priest certainly ought to be?
    Thanked by 2ClergetKubisz tomjaw
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,278
    Lest people think I was thumbing my nose at tradition, I'm not. If a priest doesn't offer ad orientem, will he go to Hell for it? Will his congregation? No (outside of extenuating circumstances such as disobedience to superiors). But that doesn't mean that ad orientem is not part of a mutually-reinforcing gestalt. "The Spirit of Vatican II" is a spirit of cultural iconoclasm. When you remove meaningful practices to make the Mass "simple" and "more modern", at what point have you removed a critical mass of meaning?
    Thanked by 1ClergetKubisz