because I couldn’t STAND what I was seeing.
I was visiting family up in Las Vegas and decided to go to Mass before I started the long drive home to Los Angeles.
The name of the parish should have been a warning: EDIT Catholic Community (I’m sure that there are Catholic “Communities” that are just fine, but still…what’s wrong with Catholic Church?).
Walking into a big squarish room with a chopping block on a platform surrounded by chairs (no kneelers!) facing a center “aisle” with the chopping block in the middle maybe should have tipped me off…
A hear empty baptismal font, the only source of holy water in the place, that you have to reach in to your elbow to wet your fingers should have maybe given me a clue…
Or being told, “leave a path for the dancer” in the procession of palms should have given me some kind of indication…
Or the priest wearing the stole over the chasuble could have told me something…
But no. I decided, maybe these are just quirks. Well, Magnifcat in hand (there were no missallettes, either), I decided to see if my suspicions were true.
Oh, God, they were and worse than I even thought possible.
Okay, the priest read the Gospel for the procession and blessed the palms okay. But then, for the procession, there was a dixieland band playing, “When the Saints Go Marching In” and this woman waving a rag around in some kind of strange gyrations around the platform with the chopping block on it. Then, before the two readings, the priest gave a little synopsis of what the readings are about before allowing the readings to be read. And there was no Responsorial Psalm. Oh, there was some little ditty about ships lost in the night and being in need of friendship because of betrayal, but I thought Psalm 22 was on tap for today. Then…the straw that broke the camel’s back…some kind of performance for the Passion Gospel. Now, I wouldn’t have minded too much if they decided to have a mini passion play that followed along with the Passion according to Mark. But no, it was a MUSICAL! Granted, I was in Las Vegas, but if I want to see a musical, I’ll go to the Strip. Again, I wouldn’t have minded so much if it followed the Passion…but it didn’t. It started at the Triumphal Entry and I walked out when this guy with a FAB voice :rolleyes: was singing some soulful little ditty (I was so flustered, I coulnd’t even pay attention) walked up onto the platform with the choppoing block on it and started singing like he was doing some show a couple miles away (on the Strip). I couldn’t stand it any more. After seeing all this, I didn’t even want to KNOW what they were going to use to consecrate for communion, so I walked out.
All I could think as I walked out of there is…what a MOCKERY. I was very disappointed.
It felt very put on and not at all liturgical. Now, I can’t judge the intent of the people doing the show, but come on! I could have gone to a baptist church downt he street and gotten something similar. but this is the HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS, not a passion play. If this parish wants to do a Passion Play on Saturday ngiht and all through Holy Week, I’m all good with that, but please don’t foist it on unsuspecting guests who expect to get THE MASS on Sunday morning.
This really gave me a good lesson in the liturgy. We can become pharisaical about the Mass (this is speaking to myself, no one else), but after seeing this, the liturgical abuses that go on here in Los Angeles seem like insiginificant little mistakes compared to this travesty.
Two things. I had to drive back, and didn’t even come close to being back in LA in time to go to evening Mass for Sunday. Mortal sin?
Second, is this the norm up in Vegas or is this parish notorious for being nutty? I have family up there and like to visit and may need to go to Mass up there.