Does anyone else remember the transition from the TLM to the NO?

Well, let’s remember that Bernstein’s “Mass” was a concert piece and was never intended to be used at Mass like say one of Haydn’s Masses which were actually sung during Mass.

But the flood of music which came out in those years was astonishing. And the fact that the vast majority of that music is no longer sung is a profound testimony that maybe the rush to modernize the Church was just that - a rush. When was the last time you heard “Sons of God” or “They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love”? But that’s all you heard in those days. We completely abandoned our deep and profound musical heritage in favor of the new.

My mother eventually stopped going to what used to be the main “high” Mass at our parish and opted for the early Mass at 8 (without singing). She couldn’t bring herself in those days to attend the Saturday Vigil Mass (that was another change) which was the only other non-sung Mass.

I’m a little bit older than you (1951) so that by 1956 I was in primer (not kindergarten) at a Catholic school back when the nuns all wore habits. We got religious instruction regarding the Mass even at that early age. It was intimidating. However, by the time you made your First Communion at the end of the second grade, you pretty much knew what was going on. The good sisters did indeed teach us what the Latin meant. And there were children’s choirs which sang in Latin. By the time I was confirmed in 1963, I had been an altar boy for three years.

I can see how it would be confusing for you since you had only started the journey. Had the Mass continued in Latin for another year or two, you would have understood far more. I can still see my mother’s finger in her Missal pointing out the Latin and the English for me as I knelt by her side.

I use a public computer so I don’t get sound.
The movies were generally behind in terms of how the Mass was celebrated. This scene really mixed things up. There would not have been guitars with a Tridentine Mass. The women would have however been wearing the hats as shown.

And it’s never suggested that Mary Tyler Moore, who plays the sister, ever did anything untoward with Elivs.

Yes, folks, see this. Elivs and the FEL hymnal. Who’d a thunk it? It amazes me every time I see it, and I’ve been watching it every time it comes on for 30-some-odd years.

BTW- This movie confirms my memories about women wearing hats but not a bunch of veils or mantillas.

How brutal! I saw things happen gradually, but I can remember exactly the first time someone turned around to shake hands at the sign of peace. It was jarring.

Yeah, I remember having to wear a hat (not a veil) to Mass. Dreadful, ugly things! Yuck!

The music we had at Mass was so dead and awful. Most people just moved their lips and didn’t really sing. Mass would have definitely been much more lively if Elvis had been singing!

Just wanted to say that this is an interesting thread to me. Thanks to all who have shared their experiences during the transition.

I myself was born in 1962, but the only recollections I have of the Mass are from when I was perhaps 5-7 and it was N.O.

However, in the last few weeks, and especially in the last few days, memories are resurfacing from when I was in my teens and I how I “went along” all the while desiring a more formal manner of the Mass, and secretly longed for sacred polyphony, even when I was playing in a “folk group” in the 80’s.

It seems I am discovering a hidden longing for the TLM because I now feel like a caged-bird set free, my longings having been validated by the Church. It’s ok, after all, to want the kinds of things offered in the TLM.


People – this pope knows what he’s doing, and here’s the proof!

Up until my college years I attended Mass every week
I remember followong along in English with my missal.
(Which I still have)
I remember at my wedding in 1965 it was the first time I was ever allowed to take the Eucarist in both species.
Only the bride and groom were allowed.

Shortly after that I left the Church and on the rare occasions when I went to Mass it was like I was in a different Church.

My mother and my sister wore hats to church. Hats were the norm before about 1962 when lace mantillas and the smaller chapel veils became acceptable. That was a really late development… It was also a product of the times. Women wore hats even in normal daily life.

Elvis? Puhlease! As well as the malarkey that people didn’t sing. Give me a break. I have been a member of a cathedral choir for over 20 years I can guarantee you that the congregation belts out Immaculate Mary and all the traditonal hymns to this day. There were 200 people enrolled as parishoners when I joined the cathdral parish in 1983. We have over 2,000 members today. The music plays a large part.

The music that Priscilla Ann calls dead and awful is the very same music that has caused my downtown parish to grow and thrive. We don’t need Elvis. We have history behind us. A deep and profound history. We sing what our ancestors sang. Plain and simple. If you need Elvis or the Muppets to faciliitate your Mass…well, that is up to you. We sing what our ancestors sang.

Back then we wore hats and gloves to go shopping on Canal Street. I remember my aunt would make us get rid of our gum before getting out of the car because ladies did not chew gum in public and we could wear gloves without a hat but we could not wear a hat without gloves. I’ve searched for a few years for hats but it is hard to find a nice hat at a reasonable price - most look like they belong outside. We always tried singing at my little church but we never had a choir and we sure could have used someone like Elvis to help us with the singing - if we had a priest who could not sing then very little singing was done… I remember a little of the Latin - we have been lucky over the years and have had priests who like to put a little Latin in. I guess I have mixed feelings since I like it both ways. I’ve enjoyed being able to participate in the NO as a lector and EM - I’ve done just about everything a lay person can do - we never had a large group of altar servers and ushers. I’ve played the piano/organ to lighting the incense and getting ready for a baptism. I’ve enjoyed my service and would probably miss it if my church went to be a totally TLM but at the same time I would enjoy just being able to be there. I took my 3 children in the mid-80s to St. Patrick’s Latin Mass - they told me it was okay since they had no idea what was being said they did not have to pay attention - I never brought them back. :signofcross:

I’m a little younger (born 1963) - so for the most part, the NO was all I’ve ever known.

But I did sense a change when I was not required to wear my veil to Mass anymore…:frowning:

I remember the Tridentine Mass being said on the first Sunday of the month at the first mass by the PP who retired after the then Bishop of Sandhurst moved or retired…I was only a kiddie back then…it was the Mass dad took us to usually mum the Lutheran took us to church…do not know why there was a distinction about parents…

Yes I graduated from University in 1964 so I can remember it all. It was torture pure torture. I suffered from headaches all afternoon Sunday. I was in a Catholic book shop around 1967 and heard some nuns talking about the “next set of changes” “What” I inquired “you mean there are going to be more?” The best I could do was be a server for some retired priest"s private Mass. From time to time I would attend the local church but sometimes the depression was so great that often I would consider myself dispensed on psychological grounds.
As a final conclusion I moved to India to escape. Here there are some ancient rites. They may take 3 hours on a Sunday but no nervous tension.

Tantum ergo (#15)–great post. What I see from those who had a difficult time with the changes brought about with Vatican II is a lack of communication. There were parishes that waited and then traumatically removed rails, statues, etc. rather than the more gradual changes that I experienced or as you expressed them.
Like the quote you gave from the nun, "this is a time of change in the church, which many may find uncomfortable."
None of the doctrines of the Church have changed. Tradition (T) remains intact although there have been changes in how that Tradition is expressed. There is a tendency to look at the Church pre-Vatican II and post-Vatican II. It is still the same Church. Throughout Church history ecumenical councils have been called to address the different issues faced by the Church. The earliest councils dealt with heresy. The Latern council addressed issues of clerical abuse with formal seminaries established after Trent. Pope John XXIII prayed for a “New Pentecost” and Vatican II was called to address the challenges faced in the modern world from communism to materialism to relativism.
The Church was shaken out of complacency. The world had already gone through two World Wars and we had entered a nuclear age.
Vatican II has not only effected the Catholic Church, its ecumenical efforts have opened dialogue with our separated brothers and sisters. Many non-Catholic churches now follow our liturgical calendar and have installed stained glass windows. A recent news article wrote about a local Methodist Church adding the Stations of the Cross (there were only 12) to its walls. Protestants, according to a Newsweek article, have started praying the rosary.
In the early 1970’s, PBS did a documentary on a missionary trip to Africa that blended tribal music into a Mass. The itenary made a cross over the map of Africa. Other musicians, likewise, attempted to write music for the Mass as we know it. Some were successful. Many were not.
Yes, some changes have been uncomfortable and not in keeping with the spirit of Vatican II. Overall, however, I am happy that over 2000 bishops gathered together to address the various issues confronting the Roman Catholic Church and ways to make our expression of that faith more vibrant.

Very interesting thread. I was born in 1957 and as far as I remember, each of the various priests that we had carefully explained before each change was made, what the changes were and why they were being made. The only muted murmuring that I remember came from the people who had shelled out to buy a new Missal in about 1967-8 and then had to buy a different one when it becaqme useless a year or two later.

Maybe I’m just a mellow bloke but I’m sure I would have kept going to Mass and learned to like either the NO or the 1962 Mass if it had remained the only option. I find it hard to believe that any Catholic who was actively involved in the Church had the idea that literally “nothing in the Church can ever change” and was so gobsmacked when it did that they lost their faith and stopped going to Mass. I think some people used that as a convenient excuse to deflect the blame from themselves when they stopped practising their faith.

I do remember my Mum asking “why do they have to change everything just to make it easier for everyone?” but she said exactly the same thing about decimal currency and the metric system (she was a whiz at maths and languages so maybe she didn’t like all the dumbos being able to do things just as easily as she could). But she kept going to Mass.

I was preparing for first holy communion in 1968. My dad took us out of the parish because it was planning a folk mass, and we attended a TLM chapel since the end of 1968. Our poor pastor from the old parish died in 1973, and was completely bewildered by the changes.

I don’t want to offend anyone or be polemical, but I’m praying for full liturgical restoration.

I am so glad to hear when people actually felt GOOD about the old way the mass was said. I was actually born in 1965, but my parents are almost 80----They are very AGAINST the old mass because of their experience with it. I LOVE the Tridentine mass but don’t get to go anymore as I did faithfully for 8 yrs in my twenties ( I am 42 now). My mother says to me that the mass made “people” (meaning everyone----wow that IS sweeping) feel NOTHING—like “what just happened???” I argue and say that not everyone feels that way—That a whole tradition of saints came from that “OLD WAY”—how can that be everyone’s experience? The irony is, that I LEARNED how to PRAY while attending that mass—I learned that the mass is a PRAYER from start to finish. This does not make her happy to hear me say this. It is ironic, I know, considering that she FELT NOTHING and that was not my experience—it shatters her perception. But since she is so much older and less open to challenge—I know the best place for her is where she is at, and for me to not talk religion with her…sad, though it is SUPPOSED to be the SAME religion.:shrug:

I mostly stay away from talking about this to her—they (my parents) think I am misguided to feel the way I do—(my dad cracks a few jokes at me about the TLM), but I wish that I could return to the TLM. I often have dreams of it.

Eat his Body, drink his Blood and we’ll sing the song of love, alleluia? About a month back at a Mass for children with a children’s choir.

Right! It is amazing to read at many sites and blogs how positively people are reacting - those who have never even experienced the TLM before.

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