Friday, November 19, 2010

Dignity in Worship

Christopher Johnson over at Bad Vestments does a good job of reminding us that "Christian worship is not supposed to be about you."  If you haven't checked out his site, take a coffee break and go do it now.  You should be okay just looking at the pictures, but make sure you swallow your coffee and set the mug down before you read the comments - they are always hysterical.

Meanwhile, Fr. Z, who provides "slavishly accurate liturgical translations & Catholic commentary" takes up the cause of dignity in responding to a reader's note:

From a reader:
What do you think about the following announcement at Mass: "At the rear of the church, please pick up a paper leaf and write on it what you are thankful for this year. We will put all of them on a tree and then carry that tree in the entrance procession at Mass on Thanksgiving Day.”
What is this, my old seminary? … er um… kindergarten?
I think that sort of stunt cheapens what Mass is about, erodes what the Eucharist (the Sacrament and Its celebration) is as both Sacrifice and Thanksgiving.  Surely some of you might be saying, “But Father! But Father! Shouldn’t people be bringing their expressions of thanksgiving to Mass? Isn’t that also part of why we go?”
I think that way of expressing thanks is a distraction. It refocuses the attention of the congregation on itself in misdirected sentimentalism. For example, who will pay attention to the processional Cross once that sort of thing is being hauled in, probably by a child. How cute!
I am not against this sort of thing outside of Mass. Maybe they should plan something during the coffee and donuts?
Indeed, Fr. Z.  Indeed.

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