Thursday, January 11, 2007


A hymn dedicated to "ad Orientem"

A commenter under the name Hebdomedary, in Fr. Zuhlsdorf's post about priests who want tradition but remain versus populum, wrote a really cool parody hymn text dedicated to the desire for Mass to be said ad Orientem.

Hat tip to Fr. Richtsteig, the "orthometrist".

1. People look East! A man sits there. Tabernacles were located where
Tables were made, gradines were blunted, Christ our Lord off to the side was shunted.
People look East at mass today; See the fashions of the day.

2. When you pray, reach your hands aloft! Seems God’s arms aren’t long e-noff!!
Pop music’s nice in any weather; Chant is good, but our sound-system is better.
Liturgies change each day or two, That’s the fruit of Vatican II.

3. Father turn East, you’ll miss the spate Of the faithful who come to mass late.
Send a mes-sage to those who back-slide, Dir-rec-tion-al-ly show to them your back-side.
Turn to the East, as if to say “Sixties’ laxity’s passing away!”

4. Turn to the East! The time has come; Put “Lay Ministers” under your thumb!
Prayerful intents beat fascination With so-called active participation!
Father turn East at mass today. Versus Populum’s clearly passe!!

Tune: Besançon Carol, Traditional French.

BTW, Fr. Z's post itself is an excellent explanation as to why those priests who really want to go ad orientem won't (yet).

1 comment:

Gavin said...

I like ad orientem from what I've seen in protestant services, but I really could go either way. My church has a particularly bad table-altar and a very nice high altar.

Fr. Z is pretty reasonable in this point, and hits close to home. I have no doubt that my boss would go ad orientem given the chance, but that would be an extremely unpastoral move and he knows it. Between that and the restoration of Latin, I'm not sure which is more important, but he's working on Latin now. We're getting to the point where there's no major battles over that, so the important thing is to move slowly.

I don't share the antipathy towards lay ministry, also. Keep in mind you and I are lay ministers. Maybe in a perfect world every church would have ordained organists, but I'm still happy I'm not seen as "2nd best to a priest with organ shoes". Then again, I'm speaking from a church in the middle of nowhere - we don't have deacons or multiple priests, and we get along very well with people reading and singing and such. We do have one EMHC, but that only makes sense with 2 sets of pews.

Then again, I have it pretty well here, so there's no need to get bitter about what others do.