Why Catholic Directors of Music get fired.
  • I think that a lot of this has to do with personality types. If 40 people were pulled out of the population and made directors of music, the successful ones would end up being from half or less of the group, based upon the fact that people tend to be either leaders or followers. The followers would fail, the leaders would not.

    It takes a certain personality to be a singer or organist - but especially a singer. To express yourself by shouting, be it in a musical manner and lovely, requires that you be outgoing and often, demanding of yourself...and for that reason also of others.

    Based upon that as well as organist's love of playing full organ, many of us knowingly do things in public that we know irritate some people who do not like singing or the sound of full organ. We know that they do not and override any feelings of trepidation for how they respond to our actions.

    I do not think that many of us actually do things to irritate people, but do things that we realize may irritate people who are not interested/totally against what we do. But if we give up, we are admitting failure, letting down others who rely upon us to produce music that is, in our minds, appropriate and needed.

    How can we get priests to understand that we have a calling as serious as theirs and deserve leeway and discussion rather than a sudden lack of communication followed by firing?

  • Liam
    Posts: 4,440
    Being an artist does not give one an exemption from the need to have high emotional intelligence in addition to high technical skill, if one wants to succeed in what is a highly social* ministry. So might well say a wise pastor. (One might be tempted to apply this to the pastor in reverse, but there the structure of Catholicism gives him trumps the laity lack.)

    * Where two or three are gathered in His Name ... there'll be trouble.
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  • That's really a load of crap, he wrote with a smile.
  • FYI - I guess I should state that I'm not getting fired. I'm resigning because my pastor is caving to the liberal faction who want to abuse the liturgy. And, I cannot knowingly offer the Divine a plate of leftovers from someone's emotional binging - which is what a small, but controlling group in this parish need in order to "feel good" during the liturgy. It's like the lovely, but very liberal Pastor I worked for at my last gig, who said after I conducted a sparse, but moving (I thought) Good Friday liturgy where we sang, "That Virgin's Child" (not the Tallis, the Spiritual written like a good motet). He was leaning in a doorway, and grimaced, saying, "That liturgy was so depressing..."
  • Anyway, Frogman, to offer a ridiculous but kind of entertaining (I think) suggestion as to how we can get priests to recognize that this is a vocation, not unlike theirs....
    why don't you start an order of church musicians. Just pick really good habits, ok....and they must be well-tailored....like a good cassock, she said with a chuckle...
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  • Can you imagine Jesus, hanging from the cross, calling down to the apostles, "Couldn't you sing an uplifting song at a time like this? Must this all be...so depressing?"
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  • ok, yeah...now do one for Directors of Music.....big pockets that you can put scores and music you keep losing but really need....
  • all I can think of, and God forgive me, is St. John whipping out a harmonica.....
  • Room for our code of ethics!
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  • Oh no, please, anything but pinstripes....