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Can you tell the difference?

Yes, this is a controversial subject--liturgical music. Everyone has an opinion. But there are actual Church documents that direct us in the choice of music for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Do you feel the music at your church directs your thoughts Heavenward? Does it take you out of this world, or drag God down into yours? More than that, does it fully glorify God?

Can you tell the difference?? from Corpus Christi Watershed on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed the video, Linda. For my part, I have to admit that my brain can't really decide whether a style of music lifts my thoughts heavenward or drags God down to my level. of the great gifts of our Catholic faith is the guidance we receive from Church leaders, both those in our own time and those who have left writings for us. The appropriateness of music for Mass is not determined by what I think of it or how it makes me feel; if so, we could each demand a different style with different instruments, claiming, "This is the style that raises my mind to heaven!" That's why I especially found the bulleted lists in the video helpful. With guidelines like these, our music, with the rest of our liturgy, can truly glorify God while cementing our identity as the universal church.

    I am mulling over one conundrum, however, that I'd like to throw out there. The Catechism does mention that cultural differences can and should be reflected at Mass (too lazy to look up precise reference, but I know it's there ;) ). In our former parish there was a gospel Mass every Sunday (the parish was predominantly black), and I did always think that it got too showy--e.g., applause after the Communion meditation, which was usually a highly emotional solo--but on the other hand, the gospel style is very much a part of the culture of many black Americans, and in their hearts it is an important way that they glorify God. After two years there, it really did seem to me that their minds were for the most part focused on prayer and worship when they sang this way (although I never stopped thinking that the applause was inappropriate and that the meditation hymn was too distracting from interior prayer). Also, when I was in Guatemala, the music at Mass was accompanied by guitar. There was no way these communities could have afforded an organ on their own, and I'm not sure how many organ teachers would have been available or affordable there, either. Would it be preferable for those congregations to use Gregorian chant a cappella, perhaps, or to continue to do what they are doing? Again, guitar is very much part of many South American cultures. Just food for thought...