Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles - June 29, 2008

Due to my daughter's grueling weekend schedule in softball, I had no choice but to take the last possible chance to fulfill my Sunday obligation and attend Holy Mass - a 7 PM Sunday evening Mass in a diocese where Sunday evening Masses are rare to begin with, and even rarer in the summer months.

I had to deal with a humstrum at this Mass. The only reason I stayed is that if I didn't, there goes my Sunday obligation fulfillment down the toilet. Thankfully, the Mass was celebrated by a visiting priest whose homily on Saints Peter and Paul was quite good.

Anyhoo, here is the music that the humstrum player played tonight for the St. Louis Jesuits/Marty Haugen love-in:

Sing a new song unto the Lord...Schutte
Taste and see...unknown composer
- I don't know where this setting came from, but the melody was quite goofy (it wasn't James Moore, Dean, Talbot, or Bob Hurd). Might have been something the humstrumist wrote. Not to mention the verses were a paraphrase and NOT from the Lectionary or the Grail.
Only this I want...Schutte
- (not bad for a Schutte number, and rather fitting for the day)
Massive Cremation...Haugen
One Bread, One Body...Foley
City of God...Schutte (I LOATHE this song with a freakin' passion!)

Also, another episode of my misadventures of receiving Holy Communion from an EMHC can be read here.



On the RPInet boards, there's a good little discussion thread going about our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI's decision to use the traditional way of distributing Holy Communion - kneeling, and on the tongue.

This got me thinking -
I made my first Holy Communion on May 16, 1971, when receiving on the tongue was still the only way to fly.

When I was in my early to mid teens, we were taught that we could (as of then) receive our Lord Jesus in our hand (as an option) as well as on the tongue.

Normally, when I attend Mass and I'm not at an organ console, I try to make an effort to get seated so that I can receive from the priest. Most of the time, from my experiences, the priest will feed one of the two lines coming down the center aisle. Sometimes I don't get so lucky. In one case, the celebrant decided to take a side aisle instead. In other cases, it's a matter of having the misfortune of landing up on the wrong line of the center aisle.

As of late (with tonight's Mass being no exception), I've been getting stuck with those extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion who have been trying to put Jesus into my folded hands instead of placing it on my tongue, which I have prepared for the EMHC to place our Lord. It's almost as if the tongue isn't even an option (or the norm) in their eyes. I've had to actually bring my tongue to them and all but say (or hold a sign pointing to my tongue saying) "PLACE JESUS HERE, PLEASE!"

Another thing I want to point out is the error in the ways of the stereotypical CCD/Religious Ed./Faith Formation powers that be that teach the kids receiving their First Communion how to receive on the hand, but make no mention of the tongue. My last two kids' classes were no exception. The tongue, as far as I understand it, is STILL the norm. And our Holy Father is bringing back kneeling - yes, in the Ordinary Form Mass - and on the tongue. The hand is an option. So, yeah - if it was me teaching, I would tell the class that you would normally receive on the tongue - reverently place your tongue out (don't lash it out as to say "neener neener neener" or "blech") so that the priest may place Our Lord and Savior on it. I would then tell the class that yes, you may also receive in the hand, and point the steps of doing so. Tell them that they may receive either way, but that the tongue is the norm, and that's what the Pope does.


Europa Meisterschaft: Spain-Germany, 0:1

Congratulations to the Spanish team who won victory over Germany in the EM 2008. Although we would have liked to see our team win its 4th EM title, they still gave an excellent show on the field against a rather formidable opponent. Angela Merkel commented that it indeed was excellent that Germany came so far to play in the final game of the EM, and there is still the World Cup, she reminded the viewing audience.



Today was another grueling set for Brittany and her all-star team. THREE games... (9:00, 11:00, and 1:00)

Game 1: A re-match against the RI Thunder travel team: this time we hung on for a 3-2 win.
Britt struck out twice (there was a good share of whiffs on both ends).

Game 2: An 8-3 win over North Kingstown. Britt went 0-4 (three whiffs and a ground out back to the pitcher).

Game 3: THE FINALS - we were blown away, 11-1, against the Appanoag A team (another travel team). Britt didn't start, but came in as a late inning replacement and walked.

The two finalists (the Appanoag A team and Britt's team) will be representing Rhode Island in less than two weeks in the regionals that will take place in Lowell, Massachusetts.

These girls have a lot to be proud of - nine games in four days and finishing 7-2. Now they get a much deserved rest.

A proud dad himself, I peacefully remain,


Super alta vectus Attis celeri rate maria: Jindal sings Catullus 63

Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal signed into law the requirement for second-time sex offenders to be castrated, either chemically or physically. For first time offenders, the judge has the option to order either.

The bill was initiated by a lawmaker from Meaux, Louisiana (a village about a skip and a jump from Lafayette) and inspired by the sexual misconduct of a former Diocese of Lafayette priest-child molester, Gilbert Gauthe. Watchers of the news will recall the name recently from the Galveston scene, where the ex-priest was arrested because he had not checked in with authorities as a sex offender.

Now that such offenders in Louisiana will be or could be forced to share the fate of Attis, I have been eagerly awaiting a statement from either the local bishop, other Louisiana bishops, or perhaps from the Achdiocese regarding the new law. Jindal himself, I understand is a Roman Catholic (who knows whether or not that factoid has anything at all to do with the price of tea in China), and therefore, one would think, he would (or should?) likewise faithfully refuse to support sterilization (as much as he would refuse to support condom use or abortion). Curiously, we haven't heard a peep from the mitred set, either now after the signing, or before when the law was still being proposed. Is it a matter of wording? "Castration" vs. "Sterilization"? Or are the croziers just waiting for the right time to respond, or will they respond when the judge orders the cruel flint to make its first cut? Seems to me that silence means consent. And if sterilization is ok? Might that mean that slipping on a raincoat might also not be as bad as, say, the A-word? Maybe I overlooked a hidden footnote in Humane Vitae that went something like "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".

What a wretched catch-22. Here is a law containing such a punishment which we as Catholics have been taught is morally unacceptible, yet if the bishops speak out against it immediately, they may be seen as supporting sex-offenders. Colloquially, the dilema is like "having a fox in the hen house." However, it would be a shame for Catholic morality to be weighed against monetary damages. That reminds me of the scene from the Egyptian Book of the Dead in which the human heart is balanced against a feather. In this case, which is of greater weight: what's right according to Church teaching or the balance in the Church checkbook after the lawyers get paid? Maybe if they just ignore it, it will go away....


Saturday Triple Sweeps Edition

Well, today Brittany's all-star team landed up playing THREE games today in our state tournament - in TWO different cities (Providence and Warwick).

First game was in Providence (at 8 AM) - an 18-0 blowout win against Chariho. This is another one of those games that was cut short by the "mercy rule" (12-run difference after three innings).

In that game, Britt got plunked, walked (later scored), hit a two-run triple (again, later scored), and a single (but was out trying to stretch it into a double).

Also, in that game, Chariho's coaching staff was fixing to protest the game due to our pitcher's stance (which was really no different from their pitchers). However, they found the powers that be, but only to find out that our pitcher's stance was fine.

After that game, it was off to Warwick for the next two games.

In the noon game, Brittany's team managed to hang on for an 8-7 win against Smithfield. Britt walked and whiffed in her two appearances that game.

In the 4 PM game, Britt's team smoked the Appanoag B team 9-3. After whiffing twice, Britt landed up sitting out with bone spur pains in her heels. Our coaches had been trying to change her batting stance, but in order for her to keep playing, she'll have to go back to her old stance (which is the stance she used when she hit the triple this morning). If all goes right, she'll be back in action tomorrow.

What I'm NOT happy about is the time of her games scheduled tomorrow. Her first game is tomorrow at 9 AM. They want her in Warwick for 8 AM. Because of the driving time to Warwick, there is no Mass I can get to around here that's early enough. If her team wins, then she has games at 11 AM and 3 PM. My only chance would probably be Our Lady of Loreto in East Providence for 7 PM (they've had a 7 PM Sunday night Mass for years). There are very few churches around with any Sunday night Mass at all (even fewer in the summer), but I fear if we go all the way, we'd be too late to catch a 5 PM Mass. So 7:00 it is. After all, 'tis the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul - not to mention today begins the Year of Saint Paul, as declared by Pope Benedict XVI.




Doubleheader Splits Edition

Tonight we landed up playing a doubleheader.

We lost the first game to the RI Thunder travel team by a score of 12-6. The ump calling from the plate was absolutely clueless, though we did make a few careless moves on our part as well.

Britt came in as a last inning replacement this time, along with a couple of other powerful bats, but the move turned out to be unfruitful (Britt and Kayleigh both whiffed, Amanda grounded out).

As a result of the loss, we played a loser's bracket game against Johnston immediately after. We won that game, shortened by a mercy rule, 15-0.

In that game, Brittany walked in her first trip to the plate. In her second trip, she hit an infield single, but made it to third on errors. She scored both times.

Next game is 8 AM tomorrow morning. Whether there be more than one game will depend on if we win the first one. If we lose, we're done right quick. If we may win, we may have to travel to another town for the next game that same day.




State Softball Tournament Edition

Today was the first day of the state tournament, at which Brittany's all-star team played tonight. Britt herself drove two two-run singles - one in the first inning, and one in the third inning. In another plate appearance, she took a routine hit-by-pitch on the hip (when I say "routine", I mean, she's so used to it that she just trots to first with the "what else is new?" look). She scored a couple of runs as well.

Final score - our girls smoking Mount Pleasant on their turf, 15-3.

Next game: tomorrow at 6.

Sportschau im ChristusVincit

Our Lady of Fatima pulled through for us to deliver a glorious win for Germany over Portugal in the quarter finals of the Europa Meisterschaft! Some tongue-in-cheek witnesses claim that for a short period, the sun featured black, red, and gold stripes and danced around the sky, and others claim to have seen a stout image of Henry the Navigator pointing out Berlin on a map and gesturing a “thumbs up”. At any rate, the victory set the team against Turkey for last night's first semifinal in Basel. Then, midway through the second half with a little more than 6 minutes of play left, someone tripped over the extension cord in Vienna, and television reception was lost Europe-wide. According to the rules, broadcasters had to obtain their video from the official Viennese feed, while only a local station maintained a fiber optic video feed directly from the stadium and were able to see Germany’s semifinal win against the Turks, 3:2. The winner of the second semifinal between Spain and Russia will determine Germany’s opponent for the finals scheduled for Sunday in Vienna (20:45 local time). The German news network ZDF is promising “uninterrupted broadcast” for the finals. Meantime, Vienna has some ‘splainin’ to do. Read more about the EM at www.zdf.de. Hang out your Black, Red, and Gold!

Consumer tip for Lafayette/Youngsville fans: Nunu’s Grocery in Youngsville sells König Ludwig Weizen, the official beer of Christus Vincit In Louisiana for the EM-2008!

Responsible Weizen drinking tip: do not drink this beer straight from the bottle. You must pour it into a proper Weizen glass so the yeast doesn’t settle at the bottom.



by Fr. Frank Phillips, CR

Fr. Phillips, as many may know, is pastor and restorer of many good things at St. John Cantius Church in Chicago. Here he talks about building a music program. I'll be listening very soon, once I get my cast up. This coming from Fr. Phillips, I'm optimistic that this will be VERY good!

Listen here

RSCT to Aristotle




My wife sent this to me.

The seven dwarfs always left to go work in the mine early each morning. As always, Snow White stayed home doing her domestic chores.

As lunchtime approached, she would prepare their lunch and carry it to the mine. One day as she arrived at the mine with the lunch, she saw that there had been a terrible cave-in.

Tearfully, and fearing the worst, Snow White began calling out, hoping against hope that the dwarfs had somehow survived.'Hello!...Hello!' she shouted. 'Can anyone hear me? Hello!'

For a long while, there was no answer. Losing hope, Snow White again shouted, 'Hello! Is anyone down there?'

Just as she was about to give up all hope, she heard a faint voice from deep within the mine, singing.... 'Vote for Barack Obama! - Vote for Barack Obama!'

Snow White fell to her knees, crossed herself and prayed, 'Oh, thank you, God! At least Dopey is still alive...

BTW, did you know that back in the 70's, the seven dwarfs were on a drug binge? The late George Carlin revealed thus:

Happy was on dope and dope alone.
Sleepy was into the reds.
Grumpy: way too much speed.
Sneezy was a full-blown coke freak.
Doc was the connection.
Dopey was into EVERYTHING. Any old orifice would do for Dopey.
And then there's one we always forget, because he is: Bashful. Bashful didn't do any drugs. He was paranoid on his own.



I clicked on Damian Thompson's blog this morning and got this:

Sorry, but that page could not be found. Please try another.
Try Again
Think you've reached this page by mistake? Visit Help for more support.

He didn't get sacked, did he? I hope not!

UPDATE 1:57 PM: Thanks to our combox contributors, I learned that the Telegraph did some toying with their web site, so a bunch of URL's got changed, Damian's included.

Click here for the new link!



Playing pretend ordination in a cruise ship, after all, was, and still is, a shitty idea! Look how the three "womynbishops" have to check the pretend ordinands for lice before "ordaining" them while wearing ponchos from the "five-and-dime".
RSCT to Fr. Erik.




George Carlin (1937-2008)

George died of heart failure last night. He was 71. His routine on Cars and Driving was a very good depiction of those "idiots with licenses" that really hits home in Rhode Island.

Another favorite was his recurring Ways to Keep People Alert.

You're driving, you pull up to someone and yell out, "Pull over, pull over, pull over!"
He pulls over, you keep going!




Twelfth Sunday of Ordinary Time - June 22, 2008
Blessed Sacrament Church, Providence, RI

Today I attended Mass at Blessed Sacrament for the first time since the last time I filled in over there (which was Ash Wednesday). For the first time I finally got to hear the music director play - he's quite good.


Praise to the Holiest in the Height..."Billing"
- (It has been EONS since the last time I got the pleasure of hearing this hymn in a Catholic setting!)
Lord, in your great love...Alstott
- (It was also good to finally hear the Psalm of the day instead of a seasonal Psalm or some hymn to replace it - the latter is a no-no.)
Alleluia...Mode VI
For the beauty of the earth..."Dix" (with a gorgeous free accompaniment on the last verse)

This group could have been better, however:
Sanctus and Amen from Jesuits Mass...Dufford/Schutte
Christ has died, alleluia...Wise
You are mine...Haas

Thankfully, they recovered and closed with a keeper:
Father, we thank thee who hast planted..."Rendez a Dieu" (I love this one!)




Playoff Round 3 Edition

Brittany's playoff season is finished, as her team got beat by the team managed by her all-star coach - 7-6.

Hitting-wise, she whiffed in the first, and singled in her next trip (she scored later on a three-run single).

It was a good comeback attempt against a very good team to begin with. Since this was the semi-finals, we finished third, which is really good (there are 12 teams in our division). This is far better than the dead last finishes of the previous two seasons.

So, it'll be another all-star tournament next weekend.


Another rejection...

Dear Brian: Thank you for your interest in the organist/choir director position at St. Sebastian's. Over the past several weeks we have received a remarkable number of strong resumes. Unfortunately, the Search Committee can audition only a smaller subset of the total applicants, and yours was not a chosen resume.
Thank you again for your kind interest, and best of luck in all future musical endeavors.

Story of my life. I suppose the other Providence church I applied to last month is next.

You would think with two very strong recommendation letters, one from a 40-year experienced organist, and one from a former pastor, would prove fruitful. On the other hand, I have a gut feeling that at least one priest of recent (and once happy) memory is badmouthing the shit out of me. In the words of Jesus, "Better for him that he had never been born!"




Last week, a friend of mine came to write a letter of recommendation for me (he doesn't have a computer or even a typewriter, so I let him use mine). He came through my front door with a good sized box of books I let him borrow last fall (like some 1950's edition of Caecilia) and then some. Well, included in the "and then some" was this little rare find you don't see anymore:

Yes, this is the pioneer of GIA's Worship series - Worship I. This is a book that didn't last too long. Published in 1971, its successor, Worship II, was published only four years later. It's function was to basically serve as a hymnal for Roman Catholic parishes in a time where throw-away missalettes were the norm.

As for the variety, it was somewhat similar to Worship II in terms of repertoire, with a few extra "folksy" tunes. There weren't many of those "folksy" tunes. Just enough to keep the one-Mass-per-week folk group in check. Yeah, remember those days, when the folk group and its banal ditties were relegated to one Mass per week, or in some places, one Mass per month? Before the variety of banal ditties expanded and was running rampant at all Masses in many parishes?

Yeah, Worship II was the better seller. However, Worship I did get things started, per se. Now to see if there's an accompaniment edition floating around somewhere. :-)



Girls Softball Playoffs, Round 2

Well, we did get our game in, despite some passing showers at the beginning. Guess what --- we won again. This time, 11-8.

Britt's batting:
First at bat: she reached on a fielder's choice (she hit a grounder to the pitcher, but the pitcher, instead of putting out Brittany at first, got the runner out trying to score).
Next ups: a walk
Then: a plunk (she's gotten used to getting hit by pitches these days, not to mention the opposing pitcher plunked five batters that inning alone).

Next game: Tomorrow at 6, against the team managed by Britt's all-star coach (btw, her regular season manager is assisting on the all-star team).



Bp. Serratelli gets it!

Fr. Z posted an excellent response by Bp. Serratelli (Paterson, NJ Diocese) about Mass translations. Instead of posting it here, I'll just send you to Fr. Z's humble abode (click on the blue words following my subtitle to go there). :)



Fr. Erik gave this present to Bp. Troutperson (or Fishperson, as Nick rightfully pointed out in the combox), who, once again, is whining because the people need a dumbed down liturgy. They don't know the meaning of "ineffable". So, here it is...




Playoffs - Round 1

Today Brittany's regular team played round 1 of the playoffs and won by a score of 9-4. Britt went 1 for 2 - she hit a single her first time up, then hit into a double play the second time. The second out wasn't her fault. She hit a soft fly ball into the shortstop's glove. The runner at second forgot to tag up and never got back in time, thus the second out. That was the second of two double plays like that. The other was when one of our girls hit a fly ball into the right fielder's glove and the runner at third forgot to tag up, ran home instead, and was in a fog till she was called out back at third.

Anyhoo, it's a win!

Tomorrow at 5:00 is the completion of a suspended game that took place last night that was cut short because of lightning. At 6:00 (roughly), we play the winner of that suspended game.




All-Star Tournament Edition I

Well, Brittany's all-star softball team finished third in a tourney in Warwick this weekend, winning the first game 10-2 on Friday, but losing two games on Saturday, 12-2 and 9-0.

In game 1, Britt was hit by a pitch and walked twice.
In game 2, she struck out and got plunked again.
In game 3, she whiffed twice, but then hit an infield single in the last inning and took second on the pitcher's throwing error. In that game, her single was the only hit. One other girl walked in a previous inning for the only other baserunner. Both runners were stranded at third.

This Tuesday, her regular team beings playoff action at 6 PM.
The next all-star tourney will be June 26-29, also in Warwick.


Musica Sacra at St. Leo Church, Lafayette

Subbing this weekend at all Masses at Leo: 4pm vigil, 8:30 and 10:30am Sunday. There is no cantor this weekend, so each Mass is a good old German Orgelmesse. Here's the all-Bach lineup. The chorales, it's being summer and with the need for items to be on the shortish side and on the less weighty side, but still on the high quality side, come from the Neumeistersammlung. For those of you who are trivia fans, my score for the Neumeisters is a first edition Baerenreiter purchased in a music shop near the cathedral in Cologne in 1985.

Ordinary: spoken
Prelude: Das alte Jahr vergangen ist
Procession: free improv
Alleluia: chanted by yours truly
Offertory: Erhalt uns, Herr, bei deinem Wort
free improv
Communion: Herzlich tut mich verlangen
Wenn dich Unglueck tut greifen an
Final: Christe, der du bist Tag und Licht



Yes, our Mass often has this lovely little added element. This video is from "The Naked Liturgist", from New Zealand. You'll get a kick out of this. Enjoy!

Oh, and I added a link called LITURGY (also from New Zealand) to the Christus Vincit Definitive Linkroll. It contains all sorts of liturgical resources from that small island country on the other side of the world.



Finishing the regular season off with a bang edition

And a bang it was - Brittany's team easily defeated their opponents tonight by a score of 17-2. They finished the season 15-7 (a .682 win percentage). This is a sign of a well-coached team. What's nice, btw, is that our manager, Bill, is coaching Britt's all-star team, assisting "Coop", the manager.

Hitting - well, a strikeout, a walk, and a plunk (hit-by-pitch) for Brittany. Her final batting average for the regular season is .519 (14 for 27).

Tomorrow night: all-star practice
Saturday: our first all-star tournament in Warwick.
Tuesday (tentative): our regular team's first playoff game.




I am very happy to announce that a former board member of the supressed parish of St. Stanislaus Kostka in St. Louis, Edward Florek, has reconciled with the Church after meeting with a very jubilant Abp. Raymond L. Burke.

Florek told the St. Louis Review that he believed Father Marek Bozek, the priest hired to be the church’s pastor, was leading the parish away from Roman Catholicism. He said he stopped attending St. Stanislaus in March when the priest “refused to enter discussions with the archbishop.”

Florek expressed his regrets over the St. Stanislaus board’s actions.

“I regret that we didn’t envision the harm which we did to the parish and St. Louis. "We worried not only about the financial angle of the parish but about the spiritual guidance. We protected the financial part of the parish but we lost on the spiritual guidance and direction leading us from the Roman Catholic Church," Florek said to the St. Louis Review.


Archbishop Burke on Friday issued a statement about Florek’s reconciliation, saying, “He expressed his deep sorrow and regret over the harm which his schismatic activity, as a member of the Board of Directors, has caused, and promised to do everything possible in the future to promote the communion of the Church through obedience to her legitimate authority.

“I am profoundly happy that Mr. Florek has reconciled himself and is now, once again, in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. The purpose of an ecclesiastical censure like excommunication is the return of a member, who has broken communion with the Church, to full communion with the Church. I thank God that Mr. Florek has returned to the Catholic Church and is no longer under any censure from the Church. His return gives hope that other board members will return home to the Catholic Church. I ask the faithful of the Archdiocese to continue to pray for that intention.”

Excerpts in italics from CNA. RSCT to the Curt Jester.

In the words of Stephen "Flounder" Furst: Oh boy, is this great!
In the words of little Stewie Griffin: Victory is mine!
In the words of Fred Flintstone: Yabba dabba doo!
And in the words of Brittany Theresa Page: Yay!




Steamy Hot Monday Edition

We lost one of those games that doesn't really matter anyways - by a score of 9-8. We've been having this heat wave the last few days - mid to upper 90's with humidity (why do I think 110 degrees in Phoenix would be more comfy?). Anyways, we've still won two thirds of our games (14-7 / .667 percentage).

Britt went 0 for 1 - a walk and a popout to short. Now, popping out is not something I see Britt do too often, but hey - it's better than striking out. Batting average is .538 (14 for 26).

Last game of the regular season is Wednesday at 6.

First Mass, Wedding Mass, Sunday Mass.

First Mass at St. Anne Church, Morganza, Louisiana

Ordinary: Mass of John Carroll, Joncas
Prelude: O Clap Your Hands, Vaughan-Williams
Processional: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty (Lobe den Herrn)
Psalm: Of the Day
Offertory: Cantique de Racine, Faure
Communion: Sweet Sacrament, Adoro te
Final: A Might Fortress, Gordon Young

Morganza is in the Diocese of Baton Rouge, and lies north west of that city. It's about an hour's drive from Lafayette. I teamed up with my good friend and colleague Rafael from St. Leo Church in Lafayette to provide music for this first Mass of one of Raf's school chums. The singers were from Raf's own choir, a couple from the Ascension Episcopal Choir (including me) and a few from the Lafayette cathedral choir. Rafael and I switched off between the director's podium and the console. I played the anthems, he directed, he played the Ordinary, and I directed. On the little communion hymns, he played and I slipped in with the basses. It was a fun Sunday afternoon road trip, although my boufonte melted clean away around Crotz Springs, since the a/c in our driver's carpool vehicle started cutting out. We resorted to the 4 at 55 cooling method. The church in Morganza was quaint. The organ was an old Conn from way back when. It had a full pedal board and made organ-like sounds. The reception was exactly what you would imagine in South Louisiana. Just picture the wedding reception from Steele Magnolias. Same food, drink, and music. It was groovy.

The day before the First Mass, I played a wedding in a parish north of Lafayette. The church where I played is a faded lilly. Beautiful brick Victorian Gothic structure. The interior is pretty much just as it always was. It had undergone a re-do sometime before V2 ravished many American churches. The renov's are 1950's-esque: art deco fixed altar and a wooden communion rail. The church is enormous. The loft sports a 1980's Allen. There's an organ chamber up there, but no pipe work anymore. The choir sit in the old organ chamber. I had played at the church before about a year ago, and I had hoped some things may have changed since then, namely the level of tidiness of the place. Although a little disrepair can be tolerated, it's rather disheartening when there is filth. The loft was an abject mess, and worse still was the view from the organ down into the nave. Between the mainship and the sideships there are two rows of massive columns supporting arches. The tops of the columns are much wider than the bottoms of the arches, producing a wide ledge atop each of the columns. This is obviously where the rats lived, as each column played host to about about 4lbs of rats turds apiece, not to mention the same sort of mess scattered around the loft itself. Chatting with the cantor and some of the singers the next day in Morganza, I mentioned where I had played the wedding. They all had the same comment from their own, experience: "I hope you didn't touch any surfaces in that place!" That's sad, since the church is really a historic place in a very old historic South Louisiana town. It's really a piece of the cultural heritage of the area. If the diocese can't see to help in preserving its holdings, espcially its historical ones, at least someone should run down to the local grocery for some Lysol, rags, a mop bucket, a debris mask and some rat traps at least to make it a little less filthy.

Yesterday, I plaed for my friend Rafael at St. Leo's here in Lafayette. Here's the line-up:

Prelude: Improv on IN BABYLONE
Ordinary: Celtic Mass, Chris Walker
Gradual: of the day
Alleluia: Threefold with versicle
Off: There's a Wideness in God's Mercy (In Babylone)
Comm: Communion Ant. (Flowing Waters)
Recessional: Dialogue en Ut, Marchand.

I'll be at the Leo console next weekend as well. I very much like the priest there. Good sermon. He's not at all one of those worthless clerics. This more than likely explains the packed church at both the 8:30 and the 10:30 Masses. I had a long break between the two Masses, so I also got some organ loft knitting time in, to work on my Greek Key scarf.



Busy Weekend Edition

One busy weekend:
Last Friday: game
Last night and this morning: All-Star practice (oh, did I mention? Brittany made the All-star team for the second straight year!)
This afternoon: game
Tomorrow night: game

Anyhoo: let's look at today's game...

OK - we lost. Those things happen. It wasn't a bad smokeout. It wasn't bad umpiring. We just lost, that's all. Final score was 8-6. We're still 14 wins and 6 losses with only 2 regular season games to go. That's a .700 win percentage.

As for Brittany's hitting: 1 for 1 - a single and two walks, raising her average to .560 (14 for 25).

She also pitched an inning, walking two, striking out two, but gave up a solo homer (inside the park) to start the inning and a couple of hits to score another run.

Next game is tomorrow night at 6, then Wednesday at 6 will be the final game of the regular season. This Saturday, the all-star team plays its first tourney (expecting to play in AT LEAST three games). I'll very likely be traveling from the field to Holy Cross (I'm subbing for the weekend - hey, we need the money!) and BACK to the field that day. This is the first of four tourneys slated for this summer.

Playoffs for Brittany's regular team will be running from June 19-30. All the teams are in the playoffs, but the position in the standings determines seed. The playoffs are single elimination this year, and the last two teams standing will play a best two of three. This is a bit different as up until now it's always been double elimination. So this should be interesting.



Sunday XI of Ordinary Time - Ordinary Form
Saturday 4:00 / Sunday 8:30 and 11:00
Holy Cross Church - Providence, RI

Music director's choices except for Psalm, which he's leaving up to me. I'm filling in for the weekend.

All people that on earth do dwell..."Old Hundredth"
We are his people...Gelineau
Alleluia...Mode VI
Lord, when you came to the seashore..."Pescador de Hombres"
Sanctus from People's Mass...Vermulst
Christ has died/Amen...Danish
Agnus from Holy Cross Mass...Isele
How Great Thou Art..."O Store Gud"
Sing a new song unto the Lord...Schutte

Sunday V after Pentecost - Extraordinary Form (Low Mass)
Sunday 5 PM - St. Leo the Great Church, Pawtucket, RI

In addition, my monthly TLM duties...

O God, our help in ages past..."St. Anne"
O Deus, ego amo te...18th century tune from St. Gregory Hymnal
Panis Angelicus...Franck
The kingdom of God..."Laudate Dominum"



Sunday X in Ordinary Time - June 8, 2008

This morning I landed up going to an early low Mass (7:30 AM). It's a church I haven't been to in quite some time - I'll say a good 15+ years anyways.

The church was recently appointed with new chandeliers (nice ones). However, it also underwent a paint job (the trim remained white, however the sections between the trim are now yellow - which, according to a couple of people I once knew, is the color of Judas Iscariot) and has new carpeting down the aisles. Not to mention the Tabernacle is now relegated to the side altar. Talk about trying to make a once decent-looking church look warm and fuzzy.

The organ is a two-manual, 18-rank M.P. Möller built in the mid to late 1920's. The organ was not used at this Mass. The Mass ordinary was said, as was the Psalm and Alleluia. However, the pastor used a boom-box to play some really goofy tunes for the Entrance, Offertory, Communion, and Recessional. I don't know the origin of any of the tunes, nor did I bother to ask. I will say this - it reminded me of a 60's lovefest.

The homily wasn't bad - I'll give him credit where credit is due.

Now - in addition to the piped in goofy stuff in place of any hymnody, the pastor, after the post-Communion prayer, invited everyone to "pray for the soldiers in Iraq by singing Let there be peas and carrots on earth". More goofy stuff. Something in the Prayer of the Faithful would have been sufficient.

One other question - what the sam hell is up with these extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion lately? They seem insistent on putting the host in my hand. For the second time in three weeks, I had to bring my face to their hand so they can place Jesus on my tongue. It's as if receiving on the tongue isn't an option anymore.

And while on the topic of extraordinary ministers, I normally try to sit near the center aisle as the priest, the ordinary minister, normally distributes Holy Communion at the center aisle. Nope! This one goes off to the side aisle instead, so I had no choice to receive from an extraordinary minister.

This particular church, had two excellent organists between 1983 and the late 1990's. However, thanks to this pastor, that stopped. The last good organist to go got into a tiff with the current pastor (this organist was hired two pastors before him) after a Holy Thursday Mass, when the organist led the choir in Mozart's Ave Verum, only to get his butt chewed: I DON'T EVER WANT TO HEAR LATIN IN THIS CHURCH AGAIN! First opportunity arose, the organist handed his keys and left with no notice.

Since 1984, the parish had kept up on their We Celebrate subscription. However, they've since downgraded to Seasonal Missalette, and kept the 2004 edition We Celebrate hymnal (instead of keeping up by switching to the 2007 book). I took down the numbers that were on the board (for the Saturday 4:00 and Sunday 10:30). Here's what they led to:

Amazing Grace..."New Britain"
O Blessed Spring..."O Waly Waly"
We Remember...Haugen
Love Divine, All Loves Excelling..."Hyfrydol"




Friday Smokeout Edition

Well, it WAS close until the final inning, when Brittany's team scored 19 runs! Yup - we were tied 5-5, landed up winning 24-6! Sounds like a football score, doesn't it? Nope! It's softball!

As for hitting: Britt went 1 for 2 for 4 RBI. In her three plate appearances, she struck out, walked with the bases loaded, and (in the big inning) unloaded a three-run double!

Brittany's batting average is now .542 (13 for 24). Her team's record is now 14-5 (a .737 win percentage).

Next game is a make-up game Sunday at 4:30.

No, Reverend Father, you may not have numbers from La Cage at your first Mass, and we said "stole", not feather boa!

Lyn's been at it again, composing these complicated memes. She is indeed our very own Queen of Meme (hat tip to Leona).

Here are the rules: (I actually followed them this time, Lyn!!)
1. List your top five favorite musical artists.
2. List your top five favorite songs from each artist.
3. Tag five people to do the same.


1. Herbert Grönemeyer (for when I’m pissed off)
2. Erste Allgemeine Verunsicherung (for when I’m really feeing catty)
3. Zarah Leander (for when I need a stiff martini and a cigar)
4. Rogers & Hammerstein (for when I’m feeling Martha Grahm, Martha Grahm)
5. Ute Lemper (for when I’m feeling, uh, er, ehem…ultra pious and devout, yeeeah!)


1. Halt mich
2. Männer
3. Stück von Himmel
4. Leb in meiner Welt
5. Schmetterlinge im Eis


1. Wo ist der Kaiser?
2. Ding Dong
3. s’Muaterl
4. Samurai
5. Es steht ein Haus


1. Kann die Liebe Sünde sein?
2. Der Wind hat mir ein Lied erzählt
3. Er heißt Waldemar
4. Yes, Sir
5. Ich weiß es wird einmal ein Wunder gescheh’n


1. You’ll Never Walk Alone
2. Hello, Young Lovers
3. Climb Every Mountain
4. Honey Bun
5. Shall We Dance


1. Das Lila Lied
2. Sex-Appeal
3. Peter, Peter, komm zu mir zurück
4. Ich bin ein Vamp!
5. Das Lied von Mackie Messer

Taggèd Personages:

1. Charles in CA – My comrade in seersucker
2. Paula Beehive – Hand the gal a mic!
3. Carl Close – Let’s hear it for the Ascension bass section!
4. Paula Beehive’s Anonymous Poster – we want everyone to partissipate, hon!
5. Any Roman priest who can decline the word “res” (Anyone? Anyone?)


PC vs. Mac

PC vs. Mac vs. Linux

RSCT to Fr. Erik (1) (2).


Tagged by Lyn.

Here are the rules:
1. List your top five favorite musical artists.
2. List your top five favorite songs from each artist.
3. Tag five people to do the same.

OK - Top five artists for me would be:
1. Raspberries
2. Eric Carmen (solo career)
3. Badfinger
4. Beatles
5. Beach Boys

Top five songs by each:
1. Go All the Way
2. I'm a Rocker
3. Overnight Sensation (Hit Record)
4. I Don't Know What I Want
5. All Through the Night

1. Boats against the Current
2. Marathon Man
3. It Hurts Too Much
4. You Need Some Lovin'
5. Someone that You Loved Before

1. No Matter What
2. Come and Get It
3. Baby Blue
4. Without You (a little known fact is that Pete Ham of Badfinger originally wrote this song - yes, this is the song that Harry Nilsson and Mariah Carey both covered and made popular at one point)
5. Day After Day

1. Helter Skelter
2. Hello Goodbye
3. Ticket to Ride
4. In My Life
5. Penny Lane

1. I Can Hear Music
2. Heroes and Villains
3. Cabinessence
4. Caroline, No (Eric Carmen recorded a cool cover of this in 1997)
5. God only Knows

TAG YOU'RE IT! First five to read this!



Father Z learned by e-mail that Tom Stehle, the man responsible for the vapid music at the Pope's Mass at Nationals Stadium in Washington, DC, last April, has been appointed music director for St. Matthew's Cathedral, also in DC.

One commenter in Father Z's combox fears:
I hope nobody bothers to translate “Gather us In” to Latin.

If the music there becomes anything like what the Pope had to endure, then the people of DC have been done a great disservice.





Umpires recruited from Community Service
Umpires recruited from the Tard Squad

Take your pick! They're the same two idiots we had to deal with the last time we played this particular team. We've only had them three times all year. They are by far the absolute WORST umpires, hands down, that I've seen in the seven years I've had a daughter in this league (my older daughter Jessica also played at one point). They're inconsistant with their calls (in the corner just at the knees when our team is batting is a strike, but it's a ball when we're pitching - same exact location). They put up a stink about chin straps. This is the first time in 18 games I've seen an ump complain about chin straps. No other umpire has done this, including the head honcho. They called a foul ball that hit the dirt strike three (the ball clearly hit the dirt, never landing in the catcher's glove). These girls were DISGUSTED!

Needless to say, we lost 8-2. Brittany pitched the first, giving up four runs. She was walking more batters than normal as she seemed to have some control issues. It was discovered, two innings later, that they had given her a ball that's normally used for the instructional division (ages 5-8) that's the same color (green) and size, but considerably softer. This might have explained the control issues.

Batting wise, she went 0 for 1 (a whiff and a walk).

Our record is now a still-very-respectable 13-5 (.722 win percentage). Brittany's batting average is .545 (12 for 22).

Next game: Friday at 6. Hopefully we won't see these umps again. They'd make better use as puppets for St. Joan's or voodoo doll statues for Call to Action.



Father Z has this well-put:

Holy Church asks for full, conscious and active participation at every Holy Mass, regardless of the form, whether the Novus Ordo or the more traditional, Extraordinary Form.

However, this sort of participation has often been misunderstood. For decades the dominant view of active participation has been that for everyone to be "actively participating" everyone has to be singing every world, carrying stuff around and doing things.

Yeah - like, everyone's got to have their hands on something: a hymnal, a collection basket, a pyx, a Lectionary, someone else's hand, a few bucks of someone else's money, whatever it may be.

Or that everyone has to sing every little thing that's got music to it. I grew up in one parish where the people even joined in the chanting of the Per Ipsum (until the pastor was corrected and had to pass the correction to his people).

Now, while the good Father continues about how this is applied to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass (btw, St. John Cantius is holding an Extraordinary Form workshop 8/25-29/08), the same holds true about the Ordinary Form as well. Every now and then it's good to just park your butt and open your ears and listen. So what if the choir sings a motet or an anthem at the Offertory or at Communion. Listen, just like listening to the Gospel or the Homily. Let the word of God enter through your ears and be on your minds and your hearts. That, too, is active participation.

To everything, there is a time.
A time to live, a time to die.
A time to do, sing, pray out loud,
And a time to just sit, relax, and listen,
and pray silently.



Organist Carol Williams plays a swinging takeoff on Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor that will knock your socks off. The organ is the Spreckels Organ at Balboa Park in San Diego.




Yes, I'm talking about Wagner's Bridal Chorus (Here comes the bride, big fat and wide...) and Mendelssohn's Wedding March (from a Midsummer Night's Hallucination).

Gary Penkala at CanticaNOVA Publications has a very good take on these two marches and why they're discouraged in many parishes, and even disallowed in some. I usually try to discourage it, and I have in my last three parishes with a 95% success rate. I've very rarely had to bite the bullet with this one (DAG NABBIT! If I was only so lucky at funerals with discouraging Beagle's Things, Be Not Afraid, How Great Thou Art, and Gentle Woman!).

In fact, the rubrics call for the Entrance Song - yes, something sung by the congregation, as opposed to the big march (my most popular option for marches, btw, is putting the Clarke Trumpet Voluntary, aka The Prince of Denmark's March, and the Purcell Trumpet Tune at the front and back ends of the Mass respectively). I rarely get to enjoy the hymn option, though I've had a couple of instances where I've gotten to do BOTH - the march while the party is processing, then the hymn as the couple approaches the edge of the sanctuary (or in some cases, the altar rail).

The late Fr. Rene Gagne, who I worked with for 6-1/2 of the eight years I was at Precious Blood Church, was a big opera buff who would not think twice about travelling from Woonsocket, RI to New York City to see a good opera. I can't remember which opera, Wagner's and/or Mendelssohn's, but Fr. Gagne did mention to me that in at least one of them, the bride featured in the respective march was a prostitute. I often use that defense for my discouraging the two. But now with Mr. Penkala's reference to the groom in the Mendelssohn turning into a jackass, now I think I might have some more clout! Thanks, Gary! :)


PS: I say all this with all due respect to Felix Mendelssohn, who has excellent sacred works in his catalog.



Sunday Sweeps Edition

Today was that doubleheader I mentioned - two makeup games vs. two different teams.

Game 1: an 11-7 win. Brittany broke out of her funk, going 3 for 3 - two doubles, a single, and three RBI. She also pitched an inning, giving up three runs, though mainly on hits. She only walked one batter, and struck out two.

Game 2: a 9-8 win against the same team that beat us last Friday. Britt went 1-2 (strikeout and an two-run double) plus a walk.

And if you think games at 1:30 and 3:00 make a busy day for a ten-year-old, let's top it off with day two of all-star tryouts after the 3:00 game. She hit a deep fly to left center. However, it landed up in the glove of a girl who knew enough to play deep. Hey - that's why they call it "all-stars". :)

The sweep gives Brittany's team a 13-4 record (a .765 win percentage). Britt's batting average is risen back up to .571 (12 for 21).



Sunday IX in Ordinary Time - June 1, 2008

I'm foregoing mentioning the church, as this is one of the two most recent churches I've applied for the music director/organist post at. I will say this - of these two churches I previously mentioned, this is the one built by Patrick Keely in the mid 19th century. Much of the church is still very much intact. The reredos and high altar is still there. About half of the altar rail is still there (only the middle section is gone - hey, that's better than most churches, where the entire rail is removed). The organ is a three-manual Rodgers that also uses a good amount of pipework from the old Kilgen. The hymnal is Gather Comprehensive, 1994 edition (the dark green book). For the readings, there is Sunday's Word. On the most part, the music selections are a pleasing change (read: NO MASSIVE CREMATION! NO BOSTON CELTICS ALLELUIA!), and were executed quite well. There was none of this "gathering hymn" crap.

The assistant organist covered the 9:00 Mass, which I attended. The outgoing music director does the rest.

Here's the list:

We gather together to ask the Lord's blessing..."Kremser"
Lord, you have the words...Haas
- (NOTE: the previous pastor, a monsignor, was partial to the use of seasonal Psalms. I remember this from an unsuccessful interview I had with him in 1995. Hopefully with the current pastor, the new musician, hopefully me, can re-introduce the use of the Psalm of the day.)
Alleluia...Mode VI (verse was sung to tone 8G)
Amazing grace..."New Britain"
- (NOTE: I'm not the biggest fan of Amazing Grace, but I tolerate it a little more than some. What pleased me is that it was interpreted with the straight eighth notes and not the swing triplets that are written in the hymnal.)
Sanctus from People's Mass...Vermulst
Memorial A and Amen...Danish
Agnus Dei...Olawski
- (NOTE: Can't win'em all, I guess. After all, there was no Massive Cremation.)
How great thou art..."O Store Gud"
- (NOTE: OK, that's a bullet I could have done without!)
The God who sends us forth...Foley
- (NOTE: Not bad for a John Foley piece. I've heard better, but I've heard far worse. What surprised me is that the outgoing music director, who's known for changing tunes, like There's a wideness in God's mercy to "Pleading Savior" and Go, make of all disciples to "Aurelia", didn't change this one to "Leoni". The text fits perfectly - 66 84 D.)

I could picture myself here, even with the Gather Comprehensive book there.