Life Teen Mass- a teen's opinion

There has been a lot of discussion about Life Teen Masses recently. I am I teen, and I *really *don’t like Life Teen Masses.:banghead: Some People will talk about how it draws teens to the Mass, I think thats a load of garbage. Here are the reasons why I can’t stand Life Teen Mass.

  1. The Atmosphere at every Life Teen Mass I have attended is one that seems to encourage people to dress like trash. At the Life Teen Masses I have been to, you would not believe the things people where. I really wouldn’t be to upset if they were dressed a little casual, but many people where what must be the most raggedy, torn up, worn out cloths they have. And thats the Men.

  2. It tries to solve the problem of Youths not being properly educated in their faith by changeing a Mass for them instead of giving them proper education. In my opinion, it is better to just not go to mass, than go (looking like trash) having no idea what the Eucharist is, and thinking abortion and all that stuff is good, and then recieving the Eucharist.

  3. The atmosphere is protestantized (if thats a word). It is basicly a protestant service with the eucharist (which I know makes a BIG difference, but it deosn’t take away from the fact that its protestantized). It causes people that go to the masses (remember, many of these people don’t know basic catholic doctrine) to view it as the same thing as a protestant service.

Any other teens (or anyone else) want to way in. What do you think?

I have never been very fond of the evangelicial movement within the church. To me it is a “Watered-down” version of Catholicism, which is something I try to distance myself from.

I actually like the life-teen mass under the following conditions:

  1. It is held fully licitly. None of that cutting corners crud.

  2. It is done respectfully. Wearing your bathing suit to mass, or a short skirt when you’re an altar girl… that’s not respectful. Upbeat music, however, can be proper, if that’s your culture. You’ll dress up for a job interview, but you won’t ask the receptionist to play classical music instead of the local pop station.

  3. There’s actually some depth to it. I agree that a big “woo hoo! We’re Catholic! Lets eat some bread!” focus for mass ins’t going to get people very far. But I’ve also seen teen masses being the ones where the issues are addressed: Abortion, Birth Control, Hell and Mortal Sin, etc. If you got the kids attention and use it to teach them the doctrine of the church, go for it.

  4. You recognize that this isn’t the end-all of mass. The teen masses are meant to acquint us with the mass, make us fall in love with it. Once were are comfortable with it, we are then able to recognize the deeper presence of the mass, its true purpose: Unity in the church and the Eucharist. Having found that, they can then “graduate” to a more solemn mass which emphasises these things. That’s how it worked for me, that’s how its worked for many others I know.

One of the best masses I ever attended was a youth mass done by Fr. Stan Fortuna, CFR. It was as upbeat and energetic as any life-teen or other youth mass I’ve ever been to, and he also was more solemn and reverencial and mystical then most latin masses I’ve ever been to. Had all of us teen’s attention for his entire homily: 50 minutes long. You name a church doctrine, he made sure he informed us about it during the homily. He made sure we knew what the culture of death was, and how we were going to be the ones to defeat it by turning to Christ in the church. And to be darned sure to know that since we had heard the truth coming out of his mouth at that mass, by the Holy Spirit, and that he knew that each of us knew that what he spoke was true, that if we didn’t follow everything he said, we’d be blatantely turning down God, and his judgement would be upon us for it. And we all knew he was telling the truth.

Which of course, was what lead to me going on discernment retreat with the CFR community last month :smiley:

Josh

[quote=Andrew_11]There has been a lot of discussion about Life Teen Masses recently. I am I teen, and I *really *don’t like Life Teen Masses.:banghead: Some People will talk about how it draws teens to the Mass, I think thats a load of garbage. Here are the reasons why I can’t stand Life Teen Mass.

  1. The Atmosphere at every Life Teen Mass I have attended is one that seems to encourage people to dress like trash. At the Life Teen Masses I have been to, you would not believe the things people where. I really wouldn’t be to upset if they were dressed a little casual, but many people where what must be the most raggedy, torn up, worn out cloths they have. And thats the Men.

  2. It tries to solve the problem of Youths not being properly educated in their faith by changeing a Mass for them instead of giving them proper education. In my opinion, it is better to just not go to mass, than go (looking like trash) having no idea what the Eucharist is, and thinking abortion and all that stuff is good, and then recieving the Eucharist.

  3. The atmosphere is protestantized (if thats a word). It is basicly a protestant service with the eucharist (which I know makes a BIG difference, but it deosn’t take away from the fact that its protestantized). It causes people that go to the masses (remember, many of these people don’t know basic catholic doctrine) to view it as the same thing as a protestant service.

Any other teens (or anyone else) want to way in. What do you think?
[/quote]

Actually Andrew, I have had numerous conversations with teens in my parish and most of them seem to echo your sentiments. The general opinion is that the Life Teen Mass degrades the sanctity of the proceedings and creates a relaxed kind of teen party atmosphere, with precious liitle respect shown to God. Remember you guys are the future of the Church, it is really up to all of you to get the faith back on track.

I am a re-vert, I began my re-version my senior year of high school and I did it without lifeteen. It was the type of worship that lifeteen promoted that turned me off about the faith. The first time I heard Gregorian Chant, smelled incense, and heard bells ringing I began to wonder what was going on. (No it wasn’t a Tridentine Mass either.) I remember how awed I was when I found out Jesus is actually present on the altar as a perpetual offering to the Father. I never knew he was present in the Eucharist before then.

As I stated in other Lifeteen threads, I find that it has a feel good mentality; that teens find is not present at mass when they go off to college. Because of this they either leave the faith all together or they become, “It’s Sunday; but I don’t feel like going to mass.” and they go on Christmas and Easter only.

I’m an adult. I pick up my cross, attend and participate in a LifeTeen Mass every Sunday. I suffer through the noise, cell phones, kilowatts of sound reinforcement, clapping and hand jestures. I believe the LifeTeen is more for the adults than the kids, as if the adults want to show the kids, ‘Hey man, we can be cool, too.’

But Dude, I’m way un-cool, at Mass. I wear my tie, don’t clap, don’t hand jesture, don’t hold hands for the ‘Our Father’, receive HC on the tongue (when I’m OK to do so), bow at the “by the power of the Holy Spirit, he was born of of the Virgin Mary, and became man”, and so on. Make no mistake about it, the kids notice, and some follow my example. Most joke about how ‘corny’ and ‘lame’ the Mass is, and there’s no shortage of ‘eye-rolling’ at the hand jestures.

Other core team members have labeled me a trouble maker, and often try to ‘correct’ me. They’ll have to ‘fire’ me to stop me.

Yep, I’m gonna just keep attending Mass the same way I always have. The way I see it, if you can worship, concentrate and pray at a LifeTeen Mass, you can worship, concentrate and pray ANYWHERE!

[quote=Andrew_11]3. The atmosphere is protestantized (if thats a word). It is basicly a protestant service with the eucharist (which I know makes a BIG difference, but it deosn’t take away from the fact that its protestantized). It causes people that go to the masses (remember, many of these people don’t know basic catholic doctrine) to view it as the same thing as a protestant service.

Any other teens (or anyone else) want to way in. What do you think?
[/quote]

I think some of your points are well-taken, and since you are one of those whom Lifeteen seeks to reach, you are well qualified to comment. However I will point out that in my experience among family members raised in or who have joined any of several protestant denominations, most protestants would be scandalized by the dress and demeanor of youth (and their adult leaders I am sorry to say) who attend Lifeteen Masses in any of the 3 Lifeteen parishes in which my children and I have been active. While various protestant Churches do have youth programs and “contemporary” worship services to attract teens, their standards seem to be much higher when it comes to dress and respectful behavior, appropriate music for the type of service, and quality of ministry of those leading the worship service, giving readings, sermons, witness etc.

I cannot comment on the entire LifeTeen program, only the one I have been to.

I was absolutely shocked at the way people (especially the young girls) dressed for Mass! I am by no means a prude or over-modest.The readers and other servers had so much skin showing… it made me really sad.

The other thing I really notice is that their (the congregation’s) focus seems to be misplaced… they seem to be more concerned with holding hands, hand gestures, and running all over giving the sign of peace(with huge hugs etc) to everyone they know. It is distracting to say the least.

There are people (including teens) who seem to be there to worship. But the majority seem like they are using Mass as a social hour.

Now, the good thing is that their music ministry is amazing. The songs are nice, and the singing is excellent. In our home parish the choir really tries…God bless them…

But our home parish has it’s own set of problems/abuses. It has been a real wake up call to me. Before I converted I assumed that all Masses were the same and all followed the rules…

Malia

The only LifeTeen Masses I’ve attended were at a very orthodox parish in Ann Arbor, and I was very moved. The music was not “rock music,” but well done music appropriate for liturgical celebration, and theologically sound. The Mass was celebrated according to the rubrics. To see the church filled with hundreds of truly devout young people was an awesome experience, and I am thankful that these young people are the future of Christ’s Church.

That said, my son, age 15, does not care for the LifeTeen Masses, even though nearly all of his close friends attend. He is an orthodox young man, well catechized, and loves the Catholic faith, but he strongly believes that he should worship with us as a family. (We attend a different parish from the one where the LifeTeen Mass is celebrated.)

I think my son hit it on the head: Even though the LifeTeen Masses are open to all, by their very nature they’re exclusive. Most of the teens celebrate without siblings or parents present.

A couple of years ago I encouraged my son to get involved with the LifeTeen Masses, even though it is a 30-mile drive to that parish, but he was wiser than I in saying that we should celebrate as a family at our home parish. I’m pretty proud of him, and happy to know that he, too, is the future of Christ’s Church.

'thann

I started going to LT masses because I was getting confirmed. I also attended the Highschool youth group afterwards. I am glad to say I stopped going after about 2 or 3 times. I am tired of teenagers being mody-coddled (spelling???). Just because they are young. I am almost 20 and was raised Catholic. Now, there were things I was not taught, things that I was lead to believe were not that big of a deal. My fiance opened my eyes to tradition and the REAL catholic Faith. I have very strong convictions about being told what is right and what is wrong. Teens are so impressionable and need to hear the truth, in fact many hunger for it. If they hear it and run, they will come back because that truth will follow them forever. I say stop treating them like babies, confront them with the truth, it does nothing for their souls to teach them a watered down version of the faith, our responsibility as educated catholics is to teach the children the truth about the faith, if we don’t, WE will have to answer for it in the end.

yeah
you are right sis
ya see people, I am 16 and I absolutely LOVE going to mass, and when I go to a mass that even resembles life teen, it sickens me(sickens may be too strong a word) I got the right religious education(unlike my sister here) and we both think that life teen is just a way to make the faith seem more appealing
we shouldn’t give these teens a false front, cuz it doesnt help
it doesn’t even make these teens any better!! there aren’t any doors for the bathrooms! (the doors into the rooms themselves) and thats in the building where I had my confirmation meetings!
lets just face it, there are SO many people who are my age who have already engaged in premarital relations, there are teens who do alot of other bad things and we shouldn’t treat them like the Catholic faith will learn to tolerate that kind of stuff
we shouldn’t let them bring their hip-hop music and immodest clothing into our churches.

they need to change themselves for God, not change God for themselves

[quote=cargopilot]I suffer through the noise, cell phones, kilowatts of sound reinforcement, clapping and hand jestures. I believe the LifeTeen is more for the adults than the kids, as if the adults want to show the kids, ‘Hey man, we can be cool, too.’
[/quote]

So true, cargopilot! The few LifeTeen Masses that I’ve been to (less than five) were attended by more adults (30+) than teens. It seemed that most of these adults were the same ones who always complained about various Church teachings (no women priests, priestly celibacy, no contraception, etc.).

When I taught 8th grade CCD, I would have my students attend a weekday traditional Latin Mass, and write a paper about it. One student said that the difference between the TLM and LifeTeen Masses were that you pray at one, and have fun at the other.

[quote=Belgarion]yeah
you are right sis
ya see people, I am 16 and I absolutely LOVE going to mass, and when I go to a mass that even resembles life teen, it sickens me(sickens may be too strong a word) I got the right religious education(unlike my sister here) and we both think that life teen is just a way to make the faith seem more appealing
we shouldn’t give these teens a false front, cuz it doesnt help
it doesn’t even make these teens any better!! there aren’t any doors for the bathrooms! (the doors into the rooms themselves) and thats in the building where I had my confirmation meetings!
lets just face it, there are SO many people who are my age who have already engaged in premarital relations, there are teens who do alot of other bad things and we shouldn’t treat them like the Catholic faith will learn to tolerate that kind of stuff
we shouldn’t let them bring their hip-hop music and immodest clothing into our churches.

they need to change themselves for God, not change God for themselves
[/quote]

:clapping: :yup:

[quote=Andrew_11]There has been a lot of discussion about Life Teen Masses recently. I am I teen, and I *really *don’t like Life Teen Masses.:banghead: Some People will talk about how it draws teens to the Mass, I think thats a load of garbage. Here are the reasons why I can’t stand Life Teen Mass.

  1. The Atmosphere at every Life Teen Mass I have attended is one that seems to encourage people to dress like trash. At the Life Teen Masses I have been to, you would not believe the things people where. I really wouldn’t be to upset if they were dressed a little casual, but many people where what must be the most raggedy, torn up, worn out cloths they have. And thats the Men.

  2. It tries to solve the problem of Youths not being properly educated in their faith by changeing a Mass for them instead of giving them proper education. In my opinion, it is better to just not go to mass, than go (looking like trash) having no idea what the Eucharist is, and thinking abortion and all that stuff is good, and then recieving the Eucharist.

  3. The atmosphere is protestantized (if thats a word). It is basicly a protestant service with the eucharist (which I know makes a BIG difference, but it deosn’t take away from the fact that its protestantized). It causes people that go to the masses (remember, many of these people don’t know basic catholic doctrine) to view it as the same thing as a protestant service.

Any other teens (or anyone else) want to way in. What do you think?
[/quote]

I am a teenager, and a fond admirer of the FSSP (the ones who hold Tridentine Mass), and I say GOOD SHOW! Props to you for dissolving the stereotype, God bless you all the way.

As to sacred music: I am a huge fan of Hendrix, Cream, Van Halen, Aerosmith, et al. But NEVER during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. In fact, I can not think of one single song (they are not hymns by any means) that has been written since Vatican II that can hold a candle to Faith of our Fathers, Panis Angelicus, Regina Coeli, Hail Redeemer King Divine, Holy God we praise Thy Name, Lady of Knock and Ave Maria (Bach) to name but a few.

Our children will respond to sacred music and the beauty and majesty of Tradition if they are exposed to it. If the Mass is “dumbed down” they will leave…and for good.

[quote=PreVatII]As to sacred music: I am a huge fan of Hendrix, Cream, Van Halen, Aerosmith, et al. But NEVER during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. In fact, I can not think of one single song (they are not hymns by any means) that has been written since Vatican II that can hold a candle to Faith of our Fathers, Panis Angelicus, Regina Coeli, Hail Redeemer King Divine, Holy God we praise Thy Name, Lady of Knock and Ave Maria (Bach) to name but a few.

Our children will respond to sacred music and the beauty and majesty of Tradition if they are exposed to it. If the Mass is “dumbed down” they will leave…and for good.
[/quote]

I totally agree,
I like alot of different kinds of music, (classical,rock, and my recent fondess for The Phantom of the opera has made some young ladies at my parish notice my singing ability… :cool: )
but I wouldn’t want any music to be played during mass that would be disrespectful to it. I don’t want to hear rock or some classical song that has nothing to do with God to be played at mass. I don’t want to hear electric guitars being played when I am trying to pray. And I am pretty sure that most people would agree that that kind of music does not have any place in Mass
and I also agree that the music will influence these younger people to leave and/or lose respect for the eucharist and the mass itself

Geez Belgarion, are you sure you are my brother???:smiley: J/K. Well put, I feel that God doens’t have to change for us, or try to advertise Himself to appeal to those that are not a part of His Church. WE have to change ourselves to better serve and respect Him. And music that is made for personal enjoyment and expression instead of devotion and respect for the Eucharist has no place at Mass.

[quote=Allen537]I have never been very fond of the evangelicial movement within the church. To me it is a “Watered-down” version of Catholicism, which is something I try to distance myself from.
[/quote]

Evangelicial movement? Lord have mercy… i’m still in denial.

I have noticed along with this infamous life team stuff, some of the preists are getting a Protestant tone (See Father Gordon Franciscan University of Steubenville, good guy, no good preaching style).

It’s all bad to me. What happend to keeping Catholics, Catholic?

What’s it all about ?

http://home.att.net/~tom.wineman/rockimage.gif

Shhhhhh. Never mention that you want something Historically Catholic. You will be pegged an Ultra-Traditionalist! Or un-Christian.

If you find something in the Catacombs, that is acceptable.
If you find something is a Missal from the 1950, forget about it.

I like being Catholic, it’s what I am.
If I wanted to be just Christian, I would pick an easier denomination.

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