Sunday, March 22, 2009


...and a list of rants!

Laetare Sunday, 10:30 AM - March 22, 2009
St. Patrick Church, Cumberland, RI

Today I went to 10:30 Mass at St. Patrick's Church in Cumberland, where I got to hear the II/18 Moller with the "punchy principals" for the first time in nearly 20 years. It was good to hear that organ still intact.

The selections of music for Mass were better than most. There was none of that goofy Haugen/d'Haas/Jesuits-type dreck ANYWHERE to be found. However, the decent music was about the ONLY good thing to happen at this Mass.

So, without further ado, the music:

"Erhalt uns, Herr"...Again we keep this solemn fast
Hay...Let my tongue be silenced (antiphon only)
Janco...Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ
"Beach Spring"...God of love (text by J. Michael Thompson)
Kraehenbuehl/Frischmann...Danish Amen Mass (Sanctus, Memorial D, Amen, Agnus)
Anonymous...I received the living God
Miller/Jackson...Let there be peas and carrots on earth
- (Explanation for this on my rant section of this post. I do not fault the organist for this one.)
Old Hundredth...The glory of these forty days

Now, the rants: (Again, no faults against the organist. My issue is with the pastor.)

The pew books were Seasonal Missalette, coupled with the 2000 We Celebrate. Why the pastor opted to stop updating the hymnal is beyond me. They were using We Celebrate since the 1982 edition and updating faithfully until then.

The pastor wore violet, not rose, as Laetare Sunday calls for.

But those are minor compared to what you'll read here next!

First of all, the kiddies from CCD (or for the faint of heart, "Faith Formation") class did the readings and the general intercessions. The teachers gave the kids the wrong readings - they gave them the Year A readings that are substituted for use with RCIA candidates. However, there was no RCIA activity going on at this Mass whatsoever. The pastor did use the correct Gospel reading. I'll give him that.

As the organist began to sing the first verse to the Responsorial Psalm, the pastor loudly interrupted: "EXCUSE ME! THE KIDS ARE GOING TO READ IT!"

After the homily, he paused for a few to give the parishioners a chance to fill out their envelopes for the Catholic Charity Fund Appeal (the equivalent to "The Bishop's Fund" or "The Catholic Relief Fund" or whatever your diocese has). Fine. BUT--- he decided to flick on the tape deck and put the mic to it. So, we in the pew had to put up with a piped in Moments to Live By by Weston Priory. BLECH on two counts - 1) the goofy song, and 2) piped in!

During the Eucharistic prayer, the pastor announced: "WE WILL DO THE SECOND EUCHARISTIC PRAYER!" Not necessary. People should pretty much know the beginnings of these by now, I would think. To boot, he ended the second prayer and continued with the optional Mass for the Dead insert from the third prayer. Habitual? Probably.

After the Post-Communion prayer, the pastor announced: "LET'S GIVE A BIG HAND FOR OUR CCD CHILDREN FOR TAKING PART IN THE MASS!" followed by applause (I stood stiff), then followed by "IN SUPPORT OF OUR TROOPS IN IRAQ, LET US SING LET THERE BE PEACE ON EARTH!" There wasn't much the organist could do otherwise, unfortunately for her.

The worst of it all was during Communion, when I went to receive. As I got to the Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, with my hands tightly folded, the EMHC said to me, "I'm sorry, I can only give it in the hand." WTF???!!! SINCE FREAKIN' WHEN???!!! Since freakin' when can one not receive our Lord Jesus Christ in the way that the Holy Father has clearly expressed his preference to receive Him? I didn't bother to make a scene. I received and consumed, and decided to save my rant for here. I don't know if this is the pastor's policy, or the EMHC's own little pet peeve, but it's definitely WRONG WRONG WRONG!

Kudos to the organist for doing a good job, considering the nutcases she has to work with!


Motherhen said...

I was actually surprised yesterday to get a EMHC who knew HOW to give me Communion on the tongue. Actually I was shocked.

I hope that this was just a peeve of the minister as if this is going to be norm, I'm going to become one of "those people" who will get out of line to receive Communion from Father.

Scelata said...

I think you should write, without rancor, to the pastor, and ask what the problem was, and respectfully suggest that if a lay person, (or a priest for that matter,) is incapable of administering Communion on the tongue, that he, or she is not qualified to be either and Extraordinary or an ordained minister and needs further training.

Please write to him immediately.

(Save the Liturgy, save the World)

Adrienne said...


Unknown said...

My pastor has entrusted me with training our parish Extraordinary Ministers. When a potential Extraordinary Minister tells me that they're not comfortable placing the Host on the tongue, I like to refer them to the after-Mass "coffee and donuts" ministry.