Skip to comments.Of liturgical silence and gigantic centipedes
Posted on 11/10/2013 1:51:46 PM PST by NYer
Here is a great point for our reflection on our obligation to revitalize our liturgical worship of God.
Unless we revitalize our liturgical worship, no other aspect of a New Evangelization will have any lasting effect.
Dan Burke wrote at the National Catholic Register:
The Devils War On Silence in Mass
A consistent thread in the resulting dialogue from my post The Devils War On Silence was on the common problem of the disturbing absence of silence in Mass. This is clearly a challenge that is very familiar to the majority of faithful Catholics.
Frequently, the noise assaults us right when we enter the church from the choir, the parishioners and other sources. This despite the fact that the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) clearly outlines the critical importance and specific instructions for the place of sacred silence in the Mass:
“Sacred silence also, as part of the celebration, is to be observed at the designated times,” the GIRM says. “Its purpose, however, depends on the time it occurs in each part of the celebration. Thus within the Act of Penitence and again after the invitation to pray, all recollect themselves; but at the conclusion of a reading or the homily, all meditate briefly on what they have heard; then after Communion, they praise and pray to God in their hearts.
Even before the celebration itself, it is commendable that silence be observed in the church, in the sacristy, in the vesting room, and in adjacent areas, so that all may dispose themselves to carry out the sacred action in a devout and fitting manner.” (#45)
The most important portion of this instruction is contained clearly and elegantly in the last line, and its worthy of repetition: We need silence so that all may dispose themselves to carry out the sacred action in a devout and fitting manner. Here we have the wisdom of the Church, as the Holy Spirit leads us to eschew all human priorities outside of God and to draw our hearts to the reality of this sacred encounter. The Mass finds its ultimate purpose in the condescension of God to meet with us and nourish us and for us to respond in a manner worthy of this gift of all gifts.
It stands to reason that our behavior at Mass will be proportionally devout to the degree we believe this meeting of heaven an earth is actually happening. In contrast, those that see the Mass as a kind of religious social gathering and harbor disbelief or lack proper instruction will see no need for such formality, and will act accordingly.
What Is the Answer?
Those who do know the proper reality should lead by example and teach it in a way that is focused first on the reality of God present, and then on how we should respond. This cannot be done in a spirit of condescending traditionalism that worships tradition (as did the Pharisees). Instead, it must be done in a spirit of love that recognizes the power of liturgical tradition to aid and order the heart of the believer toward offering just praise to our most merciful and deserving God.
Those who are not called or able to teach (Note: almost no one in the Church falls into this category) should emulate the behavior they desire, but without the negativity often flowing freely from those who worship at the altar of traditionalism. Yes, we must live out our love for God in our reverent worship and love those who have yet to know the benefit of sound formation or maturity. For those who turn others away from God by their bad attitudes will be judged by a higher standard than those who know far less or who have yet to effectively live out what they know. Need convincing? Take a look at Matthew 18:21-25 for a glimpse at Jesus perspective on the wrong approach to this kind of situation.
So What Does the Devil Have to Do With All of This?
You can read the rest there.
The New Mass got rid of the silence. Pay attention at the New Mass. There is more noise than ever before...and it was sanctioned as part of the mass.
We’ve sometimes had a woman choir director in the last couple of years who just loves singing at the top of her voice during and after Communion. She has a good voice, but it makes it virtually impossible to meditate or be receptive to Jesus while kneeling after Communion.
Fortunately, the current group are much quieter, and it hasn’t been a problem most of this fall.
After Communion is not the time to show off your opera skills. Or that bearded fellow with the castanet who also—fortunately—hasn’t appeared on the scene lately.
Soft and gentle music in the background can help with meditation. Church choirs used to understand that.
**It stands to reason that our behavior at Mass will be proportionally devout to the degree we believe this meeting of heaven an earth is actually happening. **
I love the silence in the Mass. I never sing the Communion Hymn, but go back to my pew and pray silently.
Sadly that is true. Even when the New Mass mandates quiet most pastors do not allow it.
In other words, when a Traditionalist correctly points out the value of sacred silence, he is doing so in "a spirit of condescending traditionalism that worships tradition (as did the Pharisees)." and with "the negativity often flowing freely from those who worship at the altar of traditionalism". It never enters their minds that the Traditionalists are acting "in a spirit of love that recognizes the power of liturgical tradition to aid and order the heart of the believer toward offering just praise to our most merciful and deserving God." Such good intentions are only held by the wise Progressives.
Occasionally I will attend a mass without singing, and it always strikes me as wonderfully still.
I noticed that condescending quote towards traditionalists in the OP as well. I chose to ignore it, but you are absolutely 100% spot on.
And I still say the New Mass sanctioned more noise. This isn’t just about so-called “abuses” at certain parishes. The silence of the Old Mass was passé....on to bigger and better things after hundreds of years of silence!
An analogy: I've seen the same thing in the swirls of the abortion "debate" (a term I hate anyhow) when some n00bie prolifer, often a liberal, discovers that we "really ought" to do something for the WOMEN (!!!!) as if we hadn't been doing that all our lives (Birthright was founded in 1967), as if that wasn't a major outreach of the prolife movement (there are 4 or 5 x as many Crisis Pregnancy Centers as there are abortion sites), as if all our local charities and Catholic Social Services hadn't been doing that in every parish and diocese and every country of the world since before the bright young n00b was born.
But the n00bs just discovered concern for women, and they'd be glad to school you on it if you'll listen!
I pulled those quotes directly from the article.
Oh! I beg your pardon, then. I just skimmed it (am presently kicking myself) and your point is right on the mark.