Thursday, September 13, 2007

Note: When musicians are applauded at Mass, something bad is going on.

A friend who is possibly more sarcastic than I am told me the following story. He was visiting the parish nearest his house, which is not his parish. The choir (music group, whatever you want to call it) was up front and elevated in a prominent place. At the end of Mass, the entire congregation gave them a rousing round of applause. Paul, on the other hand, had to fight back the urge to ask the priest, "Father, the performance was great. When the heck is Mass?"

Just as the homily is not supposed to be a stand up act, so music at Mass is not a performance. It is an act of prayer and an offering to God. If musicians are applauded, the first question that should be asked is, "What is being done that makes people believe that this is a performance?"
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