Friday, March 16, 2007


Or am I just b*tchy?

Either way, I'm gonna ask that Peter Griffin (from the Family Guy, for all you TV-challenged out there LOL) classic question, D'YOU KNOW WHAT GRINDS MY GEARS?

So.... d'you know what grinds my gears? People making a mockery of the liturgy. Like this Father Richard Rohr did at MahonyFest '07. This in from the California Catholic Daily (with a hat tip to Gerald, who's trying his damnedest to keep his promise not to curse, and my commentary in Lenten purple):

At the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress on Saturday evening, March 3, Franciscan Father Richard Rohr celebrated a “general liturgy” in a ballroom at the Anaheim Convention Center. Father Rohr is a founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico and a Congress presenter. (Now, let me explain something here. There are two types of Franciscans. We have the ones who really take the liturgy seriously, and we've had those guys fill in at my parish. Then you have the nutcases, like the one that drove my best friend out of his parish, and this guy. Read on.)

The processional hymn was “Christ Be Our Light,” accompanied by bongo drums. Liturgical dancers carried large, flowing banners down each of the aisles in the ballroom. Reaching the front of the ballroom, the dancers stood along either side of the podium, twirling the giant banners. (The hymn in itself isn't bad, even for a contemporary piece. I've heard a lot worse. The liturgical dance, however, is bad. Cardinal Arinze himself, in his current position with the Church, has decried liturgical dance.)

Rohr, making no sign of the cross as he began the liturgy, said to the assembly, “as a fellow member of the Body of Christ, I thank you for allowing me to speak in your name. The Eucharist is always set in the form of a dialogue. First of all, I recognize the presence in you, and you return the compliment, and then the body is born.” (NO sign of the cross? Talk about blatant ignorance for our reminder as to why we celebrate Holy Mass to begin with. Further, the priest doesn't speak in the name of the "gathered faithful", but acts "in persona Christi". The last sentence here is about as self-centered as they come.)

While the intercessions were read, several people, standing on each aisle of the ballroom, were making choreographed hand movements. Several audience members joined in mimicking the movements. (I can remember as a teen growing up having hand gestures forced down our throats as well, but during the Lord's Prayer. Just as bad if you ask me.)

The offertory procession began with two women waving banners, followed by two liturgical dancers, carrying a white tablecloth, sashaying up to the podium where Rohr sat waiting. They were followed by others who carried the hosts in large wicker breadbaskets and the wine in glass and plastic pitchers. (The infamous KoolAid jugs, ah yes!)

Rohr prayed over the gifts, “...make sure this people is hungry and ready to eat. Make sure we are not so filled with ourselves that there is not room for another person within us. Loving God, make sure this people is very hungry.” (What the sam hell kind of crap is this????)

Rohr changed some of the prayers of the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Opening the preface, he prayed, “Father and Mother God....” Before the consecration of the host, he said, “before he was given up to death, a death he said ‘Yes’ to....” And before the consecration of the wine, Rohr prayed, “when supper was ended, he gave you thanks and praise, gave the cup to his beloved....” Following the consecration, Rohr said the Christ's bloood “will be poured out for you, and for all, so you will know your sins are forgiven.” In praying for the departed, he referred to them as “especially your own beloved who are already with the Lord.” (Now, he does know that changing the words of Holy Mass is strictly forbidden by the Church, right?)

Rohr prefaced the Our Father, by saying, “and now, knowing we are more one than we are many, though we come from different places and races, we all share the same Father-Mother God. We call upon our God, together, in the words that Jesus gave us: Our Father, Who art in Heaven...” (At least the last six words here are correct - but that's it.)

Apparently SAY THE BLACK AND DO THE RED just wasn't enough for this guy. The Church GIVES US the liturgy to celebrate. We don't give our stage act to the Church.



Dad29 said...

I thought he was still sitting naked in a desert someplace, doing "sweat-lodge" stuff to the Great Spirit.

Brian Michael Page said...

Ah yes, where we have the Holy Spirit, he had the Great Spirit.

In that case:
ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmm! (LOL)

Gavin said...

How can you possibly NOT be pissed by stuff like that?

I went to the Marines base in San Diego for my brother's graduation, the Catholic Mass there was a total abomination! The priest wasn't properly vested, the Mass was celebrated in a theater, I'm sure the priest must have been gay, and if all that wasn't bad enough (which it isn't terrible) there was a man that would make you long for Mr. Caruso warbling into a microphone and waving his arms about in a seizure-esque attempt to "lead". His singing was awful, the music was OCP's worst (I too like Christ be our Light, wouldn't have minded that...) and the priest changed "men" in the creed to "people"! At the Agnus Dei, the cantor actually went through the aisles crooning to the recruits! And of course the Mass began with the Invocation of the Nice Day: "Good morning, recruits!"

I don't see where the outrage is over this. True, the recruits are being TRAINED to deal with such annoyances, but no one in my family saw anything wrong with that Mass! What if for my brother's graduation they substituted "It's a Small World Afterall" for the Marine Hymn? What if they gave him a smiley face sticker instead of his Eagle, Globe, and Anchor? What if they even went through the ceremony with a primary concern being the audiences "participation"? No one would accept that at their son's graduation, so why at Mass?

I also had attended the protestant liturgical service on base. Hey, I needed to get some real hymns in! There the organist was terrible, the recruits didn't sing, but the saving point is that their chaplain actually CARED about his liturgy. What a difference it can make to just say to yourself "this matters. This is important."

Adam Schwend said...

Reading that just made me angry...more wine!

Al said...

& anything that the Reverand(?) Rohr does surprizes us how?

The answer: Surprize, no, disgust & nauseate, YES!

The other day I was at our local Borders when I came across the following title: "Little Flowers of Francis of Assisi: A New Translation"

1st of all you will notice that St. Francis is not called S. Francis, just Francis.

2nd, it was published by a new age publishing company.

3rd, Fr.Rohr wrote the intro. By the time I was done reading the intro, my head was close to spinning. He talks all about how Jesus was a great teacher but natch, nothing about Him being God or Savior. & of course the whole slant of this is not that Francis was a Catholic, or that his whole aim was to preach the Gospel. Rather here we have a new age nature boy mystic (my summary of what the whole aim of this edition is). Sadly, this insult to God as well as my paisan, San Francesco, was in the Catholic & Orthodox (anything but) Inspirational rather than the garbage. & nearby was a comentary on another alledged Catholic, Joan Chittister's Commentary on the Rule of Benedict.

I know Fr. Neuhaus says that the "Silly Season" is passing. I just wish it would already.