EF music director- 1 year reflection
  • I have to share my joy with all my CMAA friends. In preparing the Introit for today's Mass, I realized that I had survived my first full year as music director at an FSSP parish. This was new territory for me, as I did not grow up with the older form of Mass. With enormous gratitude and a certain amount of chagrin, I must admit I have grown to love this form of Mass entirely.

    Returning to the Introit for today was much like reuniting with an old friend. I am hooked on chant (esp the propers) more than ever, and pondering how blessed I am (yes, even amidst the aches and pains of growing a music program!) to be in the daily service of the Sacred Liturgy. I don't deserve it.

    While I will not disparage the OF, I cannot hold back sharing what is in my experience the fuller measure of grace I encounter in the EF any longer. It has been a blessing for me and my whole family. Let's just say I feel like shouting from the rooftops at the great gift I have found... DEO GRATIAS!
  • GavinGavin
    Posts: 2,799
    Congrats on the fine work, MA! I find doing music in the EF to have its disadvantages too, but I must say that in the past I've enjoyed much more doing music for the EF than even a reverent OF.
  • Ah, to have a local EF Mass with (decent) music every Sunday ...
  • Congratulations Mary Anne on your first anniversary!
  • Gavin, I concur. Part of what I find so liberating in the EF is the straightforwardness of musical demands. Sure, one can opt for Rossini or some such every Mass, but there is a clear and beautiful goal. The same goal in the OF is too often obscured. The exceptions have become the norm in the vast bulk of parishes, in my area at least. And so its mostly about playing to factions, and liturgy committee requests and Fr.'s favorite hymns, etc. etc. The Church's intentions become obscured by personal preference.

    For the first time, I am able to be unapologetically, unambiguously Catholic in all music selections. No one is fighting me on Latin and chant. With so much of the music set in the liturgy already, I also have a clearer perception of my position. And that's refreshing.

    Jeffrey, thank you! I held back on calling you every week last year so as not be a bother. But after having had the immense pleasure of hearing you all at Fr. Zepeda's ordination, I should warn you that I might be inquiring more often. Your work is truly amazing, and I can't resist wanting to learn more.
  • gregpgregp
    Posts: 632
    There seem to be quite a few of us in CA these days (doing the EF as well). Granted that it's quite a ways from San Diego to Sacramento (and beyond), would a California CMAA chapter be a good idea?

    We talked about having a 'mini-colloquium' at some point last June while in Chicago. Perhaps that's a bit ambitious, but maybe one weekend somewhere for a special event?
  • Greg, I'm all for that!
    Santa Barbara as a mid-point? Where are all the CMAA folks in CA?
  • gregpgregp
    Posts: 632
    Well, for the people I'm aware of from North to South, we have Sacramento, San Ramon, San Francisco, Oakland, Newark, San Juan Bautista, Visalia, and San Diego. I'm sure there are others I'm not aware of.

    I'll volunteer to keep track on anyone who's interested. Send me your information! Click on my ID for my email.
  • rsven
    Posts: 43
    Dear MA, I, too, am directing music for an FSSP Mass, although in the Midwest, and share your delight for the same reasons. Although there is much uncertaintly, I regularly pinch myself to see if this is real: singing the whole Mass in Gregorian chant. The basis for it all is the service of the FSSP priests, who have given up everything to bring this to us all. We can never pray for them enough. What about it?!
  • I feel so guilty!
    I did receive a flyer that there's a EF workshop on President's Day presented by one of the Sacto FSSP priests at St. Anthony Padua in Fresno from one of my associates. Planning on going. I think the Latin Mass of America folks are sponsoring.
  • RSven,
    Yes, prayer for these priests is a happy must. My observation, though, is that while they are hard working and have truly given up everything, in general they have a strong support network of brother priests- and the more profound prayers inherent in the older form. Should a priest take these prayers into his soul daily, he is graced with an incredible and ongoing formation. I am increasingly convinced there is more of everything rich and meaty in the EF- for the spirutual lives of priests, too.

    Guilty, Charles? Whatever for?