Monday, July 26, 2010

warning: controversial image...

... all it took was this one image posted on my facebook page to cause a scandal.



Really, I thought we were over this squabbling by now. We, in the Diocese of Charlotte, are seeing a marked change after years of wandering in the liturgical desert. Churches are starting to look like... churches! It is very exciting and I personally am grateful for the efforts that our local priests and Bishop Jugis have been making to bring the richness of Catholicism to the faithful.

The above image is of the new Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury NC. The old parish was just as beautiful too. I remember being very upset when I learned it was being sold. But it was too small. Every time I went it was packed and people stood in the back... a testament to the priest and his celebration of the liturgy.

Of course when I posted the above image on facebook it took no time for some one to notice the absence of an altar rail. I commented that at this time I don't believe they offer the m.e.f. ... it was all down hill from there.

The divisive exchange began about the illicitness of one mass over the other. LeFebvre was mentioned. It didn't help matters when asked why I don't attend the SSPX chapel I remarked it was cultish. Then I dared defend the novus ordo mass by saying I've seen it done reverently and solemnly.

Don't we have enough pitted against us as Catholics, like, I don't know... the world. Do we really need the infighting and liturgical divisions? Have you ever known the Church to do anything without a slow deliberate pace? These things take time. The changes are coming slowly but surely. We need to celebrate and support those involved in these changes. Not deride their efforts with our critiques.

And for the last time people, one form of mass is not spiritually superior to the other. Yes, we may have our liturgical preferences, but that does not make the Blessed Sacrament any less transsubstantiated.

31 comments:

Adoro said...

AMEN Sistah!

Andrea said...

WELL SAID!

The Watcher said...

I've noticed that, when it comes to religion, people are like cats - they don't like change.

I myself am working on coming to grips with that sort of thing, and the only thing that's helped me with it is reminding myself that there are important things and unimportant things, like Paul said. If it's something that directly goes against what Jesus and His apostles said, that's an 'important' thing; most other things are just not important enough to go all medieval over.

And I'm a bit fed up with churches that don't look like churches, myself. But, again...it's not the building, it's Who resides therein that counts.

Anita Moore said...

I am on record as saying that while I know the Novus Ordo is valid (and it's the only Mass in the Latin Rite I ever attended until recently) I think Mass in the Extraordinary Form is better, complete with reasons to back me up. I am also on record as stating that I decline to attend the SSPX chapel in spite of its relative convenience, waiting instead until I could get the Extraordinary Rite from a non-suspended priest (whose parish is 50 miles away). I am sorry if this church pictured above does not currently have Mass in the Extraordinary Form, and does not (yet) have altar rails.

HOWEVER...that is one heck of a beautiful church, and by your leave, I will also post this picture on my Facebook page, and let the chips fall where they may.

Anita Moore said...

P.S. So there.

talitha cumi said...

I'm in the same boat as Anita, it seems - a die-hard Latin Mass fan, though I will go to a Novus Ordo Mass over an SSPX one (even though I was raised in the SSPX) if I can't make it to a licit Latin Mass.
That being said, that is one heck of a beautiful church, and if it's a new church, that's doubly amazing. They've got something very right! I'm willing to bet that any parish that builds such a beautiful church also celebrates Mass very reverently, even if only in the N.O. form. Good for the priests/bishop in charge! Dedication to beauty in the house of God denotes love and respect for God...

margaret said...

Dearie me, people should be grateful for beauty when shown it. The only thing I can think of regarding altar rails there is that lovely marble looks slippery.

Joe (Defend Us In Battle) said...

Wow.

IF you could only see what we have here...

We dont even have a pastor.

People need to count their blessings.

Thomas said...

Amen! Although I'm sure some are originally good intentioned, I often get a bit fed up by those who always HAVE to find SOMETHING wrong with EVERY liturgy/church/priest. Your story reminds me of a few of the commenters on the NLM site. An example: The NLM post about Bishop Perry and the Latin Liturgy Convention a few days ago. There were quite a few pictures of beautiful liturgies at a beautiful event! Yet, sure enough, the very first two comments were people nit-picking about this and that little error.

I live in a small diocese in Texas where we don't have a single Latin Mass. And I don't mean simply no EF Mass...not a single Mass with more that MAYBE one part of the ordinary in Latin. Our two newest churches, although better than the parish centers they were using before, pretty much fit the bare minimum mark for a parish church...a far cry from the picture you have posted! I would love to have churches even half as beautiful as that one or liturgies half as beautiful as some of the ones shown on blogs like this one, yet so many people seem to be more busy counting errors than counting blessings.

The Kernel said...

I know what you mean. A few weeks ago I attended the most reverent Novus Ordo I'd ever been to. But afterwards I could hear people from the Latin Mass crowd comparing it to a Shamwow commercial. A little perspective, please!

Mary B said...

Its so sad we can'y just be happy to be allowed to be in Communion with one another. I only have Novos Ordo available (and wouldn't know if a local offering of a Latin Mass was licit or not since I don't know any SSPX.) My church has brought back the old beauty but its not always as reverent as some would wish. It does however have great joy. After Communion there is a tremendous joy and an anxiousness to share with each other. Christ can do good with that.

epiclesisdesign said...

the problem isn't either form of the Roman rite -- it's people, which is unfortunate. i don't see much difference between the aztec stole / Haugen-Haas faithful, and the "if it ain't Baroque don't fix it" faithful. both are equally... questionable.

the reason why all this liturgy talk in the Christian West is so polemical is because people make it so. the quest for the truth, and for precision in ascertaining facts within that, is often twisted into mere rectitude, which we seem to value above all things. the "i'm right, you're wrong, Paul VI was a poopie-head" mentality is, indeed, terribly tiresome. i'm convinced that "TLM" people are the reason why the EF isn't "taking off as fast as it should be." but if these brothers and sisters want fast action, then they can get a can of Tinactin. i'm content to let Christ work in His own good time as He sees fit.

as far as building new old-skool-European churches is concerned, well, that's another story altogether, and far too long for a comment box.

Patrick Kinsale said...

I especially like the SANCTUS on the steps. I wonder why that is so much better than if it said "HOLY"

The Retail Girl said...

Much agreed, it breaks my heart when I hear petty catholics complaining. I would much rather enjoy the company of a loud mouth pagan who's only apologetic training is to shriek "priests are child molesters" and "The Pope is a Nazi!" than be around SSPX people. Really...seriously...I mean that. At least its easier to practice charity with a heathen.

Those catholics sadden me, they take so much for granted.

Athanasius contra mundum said...

I like the image of the bird on the altar. The bird using its beak to tear itself open and offer its body to its young. Its also my favorite Eucharist allegory.

Badger Catholic said...

I completely agree that rad-trad are self defeating. These people think we should impose altar rails on the East as well. The altar is clearly beautiful.
but...that said, every Mass has a different spiritual effectiveness. For example, the Christmas Mass in Grecio in 1223, assisted by St Francis, was likely more effective than say Mass said by Arius or Martin Luther. The disposition of our own hearts, the hearts of those assisting at Mass, and indeed heart of the priest celebrating Mass, not to mention God's free will can either hinder or make way for the effectiveness of the sacrament. As Fr Hardon said, God is not a socialist. He even loves some of us more and some of us less. Just like we love more those who love us in return, so it is with God. I'm not saying one form of the Mass is more effective than the other here, just that when the re-presentation of the Sacrifice occurs in time, each occurrence is unique. This is what Fr. Hardon, SJ taught anyway.

Badger Catholic said...

btw, that is not to say that Jesus is any more or less transubstantiated either, only the effectiveness.

Richard Truman Michael said...

Thomas, I completely agree. I love the NLM but some of the people who comment think they are the ultimate authority when it comes to the Liturgy. That Bishops Mass was beautiful and I'm sure the faithful loved every moment of it. Never go over to Rorate Caeli. The people who comment there practically think they are the Pope.

Minkykat said...

WOW! That's the NEW altar??
You people in that parish are so blessed to have such loviness.
Lord, I will take that altar sans rails any day over the butcher block "people's table".

The Blind Guide said...

I love the Tridentine Latin Mass(I try to go at least once a month), BUT I would never frequent an SSPX chapel. Why, because attendance is clearly irregular. Why so clear? Let's ask good ol' Mr. [Council of] Trent: “If anyone says that the ceremonies, vestments and outward signs which the Catholic Church makes use of in the celebration of Masses are incentives to impiety, rather than offices of piety; let him be anathema.” The Novus Ordo is a canonically approved liturgy of the Church. Case closed. I got banned from Facebook's largest Latin Mass group awhile back after bringing this up. ;)

The Blind Guide said...

Correction: instead of saying I'd never 'frequent' an SSPX Chapel, I should have said I'd never even go once...for clarification's sake.

Richard Truman Michael said...

Luckily I am blessed to have so many churches around me offering TLM, and in the San Diego Diocese no less! Bp. Brom doesn't like it but whatever... St. Margret's has one of the most well done Sung Masses I have ever seen. Absolutely beautiful. Then we have the FSSP more downtown, and then quite a few other churches that have Low Mass and occasionally Sung Mass.

The Blind Guide said...

Richard, I'll keep that in mind. I'm going to be in San Diego in August. I always want to know the best churches to go to. : )

Richard Truman Michael said...

Oh fantastic! St. Anne's is the FSSP church.

karyn said...

i am amazed at how many people think of the SSPX as a bunch of people with nothing better to do than to be angry and ungrateful and everything...perhaps if they start attending an SSPX parish for a while, perspectives might change

Minkykat said...

Hmm...it would appear that I have a SSPX church here in town! It's in a crummy area but hey, so it another of my favorites.

Guess I will go and have a look.

Minkykat said...

Holy Smoke. I went to the local SSPX church.
Quaint, simple, warm and gentle. Like coming home.
Say what you will, I will be going back.

April said...

Well said! I agree that NO and Extraordinary Form should learn to appreciate one another and get along! I can't wait to see what happens when the new translation of the mass comes out.

As for not having altar rails... the churches in my area don't have kneelers period! If you have any kind of kneeler I would count you very lucky.

If you find the kneeling/standing in mass debate interesting you should check out a podcast called Station 15, episode 17 "Skneeling at Christmas." (In case you're wondering Skneeling is their word for the kneel/sit-on-the-pew-at-the -same-time move.)

Gail F said...

It is gorgeous!!!! I just LOVE the steps that say "sanctus sanctus sanctus" that is INSANE (in a good way). Ditto everything you said.

Minkykat said...

Good Grief, April! That's horrible!Let me guess;they ripped out the kneelers so as to "encourage" everyone to "stand in unity".

Jane said...

My husband and I just moved to NC (literally just moved. We arrived on Sunday and haven't moved into our house yet). Our parish here is about to break ground for a new church, and unfortunately, it's not a lot more traditional than the old one, just bigger. The pastor is not particularly traditional. The younger priest here, though--wow. He chants parts of the canon, is very free with the incense, and is also an excellent preacher. I hope we get to keep him for a long time.