Monday, June 29, 2009

Music for Confirmation and the death of a parish

My confirmation was in the Spring of 1963. Yeah, just before all hell REALLY began to spew from the pews and the sanctuary.

My class was FURIOUS when we were told that we might have to sing in English (what a bunch of dolts, lol). We were the class that was willing to sing Onward, Christian Soldiers in Latin.... we asked Msgr. to help us how to do that - he was perplexed because even in Latin that old piece would never have been allowed in the church. We told him it was so we could sing it on the playground.... when in fact what we did was to tell our protest ant friends that it was originally a Roman Catholic hymn. When they didn't believe us, we sang it in Latin....

I don't recall everything that was sung that day in 1963, but much of it came from the St. Gregory Hymnal. Or, all of it did. In those days, Bishop John King Mussio still slapped our faces a little - you know, knocking the s***ty ol' devil out of us. He knew me well, and my family (my grandparents, not Catholic, lived next door to a wonderful Lebanese family), so he actually slapped me a bit harder. Damn!!!! My best friend of the day gave me a huge, toothy smile after that happened. Bishop turned and said to him, "You want me to give you one too? Is the devil still in there?" Of course, we almost all got in trouble then...Sister Paulette was NOT happy. We heard the sound of death almost immediately: THE HOLY CLICKER...THREE TIMES QUICKLY. And we knew we were toast - or that our souls would be soon.

Thanks be to God, the hocuspocusbogus stuff which was later called music, was not in our church. That day.

Yesterday, 6/28, Holy Trinity celebrated its last Mass as a parish, 104 years old. And what music did they have? ALL FRICKING GEEEEETAR stuff. Three organists from the parish history offered to come back and assist with the music. We were shot down in order to let the young couple who had moved to town two years earlier and not left them, do all the stuff. Will be interesting to get the booklet soon - Mom is sending it to me.

God's blessings,

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