Playing music during the preparation of the Eucharist?


#1

I got in an argument with another member of my church choir because he recently started bringing his guitar to play at Mass and was 'practicing' the chords for the communion song DURING the visiting Bishop's preparation of the Eucharist. He was playing them quietly-- as if to not be heard by the congregation, but he-- of course-- was heard by the congregants. When I challenged him about his disrespect to the Bishop and to the Eucharist, he told me that 'lots of churches play music during the preparation of the Eucharist'... (also that 'lots of churces' have an acoustic guitar accompanying a perfectly good piano or organ).

I am convinced that he was bored (he had told me earlier in the Mass that he thought the Bishop's homily was 'boring') and wanted to practice as he is a beginner guitar-player, and tried to cover up his disrespectful actions by saying he intended to accompany the preparation.

My questions are these:
-Has anyone ever heard of playing music DURING the preparation of the Eucharist (aside from the Eucharistic hymns, of course)?
-Is it common for traditional Catholic masses to have a guitar playing along with the piano/organ?

Thank you.


#2

It's sad to see how little respect some people have for Our Lord; to answer your question, no, I have never heard music during the Eucharistic preparation, neither piano/organ nor guitar. I, too, believe he may have been "bored" and wanted to practice his guitar in a completely inappropriate situation.

However, I have (unfortunately) heard guitars playing hymns for Mass and they weren't very good; it felt too "un-Catholic" for me to be completely honest. I remember once, when I first started going to church a few months ago, the entire congregation sung The Lord's Prayer to the tune of a guitar in the background. :eek: I did not like that whatsoever, and by the next Sunday, there was no guitar.


#3

simple question when in the eucharistic prayer was it happening. Because at the elevation of the Host and the Wine there is supposed to be a grand silence in the Church. I think this is one of the few moments where there has to be silence.

There should probably be no music during any of the eucharistic prayers, with the exception of the priest chanting which would be considered music.


#4

Music is allowed during the preparation of the table, but after the Pray Bretheren......I have never heard music apart from organ intonation for the Sursum Corda and congregational responses.

As for guitars.....you are (sadly IMHO) more likely to find guitars used in Catholic services than elsewhere in my experience.


#5

[quote="Gail_Autumn, post:1, topic:309608"]
I got in an argument with another member of my church choir because he recently started bringing his guitar to play at Mass and was 'practicing' the chords for the communion song DURING the visiting Bishop's preparation of the Eucharist. He was playing them quietly-- as if to not be heard by the congregation, but he-- of course-- was heard by the congregants. When I challenged him about his disrespect to the Bishop and to the Eucharist, he told me that 'lots of churches play music during the preparation of the Eucharist'... (also that 'lots of churces' have an acoustic guitar accompanying a perfectly good piano or organ).

I am convinced that he was bored (he had told me earlier in the Mass that he thought the Bishop's homily was 'boring') and wanted to practice as he is a beginner guitar-player, and tried to cover up his disrespectful actions by saying he intended to accompany the preparation.

My questions are these:
-Has anyone ever heard of playing music DURING the preparation of the Eucharist (aside from the Eucharistic hymns, of course)?
-Is it common for traditional Catholic masses to have a guitar playing along with the piano/organ?

Thank you.

[/quote]

Your music director should take care of this. If he was playing as the consecration was taking place, he should be expelled from the choir. Or if he was playing without permission at any time, he should be expelled.


#6

During the preparation of the offering * music is allowed, but the music is to stop as soon as the priest starts the Prayer over the Offerings: “Pray Brethren that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God the Almighty Father”*


#7

Vatican says "no".

Redemptionis Sacramentum:

[53.] While the Priest proclaims the Eucharistic Prayer “there should be no other prayers or singing, and the organ or other musical instruments should be silent”,[132] except for the people’s acclamations that have been duly approved, as described below.


#8

If I were you, I'd speak to the music director first. Point out the sections of the RS that Windmill posted. If the MD doesn't put a stop to it I'd then speak to my Priest.


#9

[quote="liturgyluver, post:4, topic:309608"]

As for guitars.....you are (sadly IMHO) more likely to find guitars used in Catholic services than elsewhere in my experience.

[/quote]

I'm not sure why this would be "sadly". If the congregation would like music and the person who is willing and able to play music steps forward and happens to play a guitar instead of a keyboard, how is that any less glorious?

They didn't have organs at the very earliest of the church.


#10

Can you define what you mean by the "preparation of the Eucharist?" At what point, exactly, did he begin playing and at what point, exactly, did he stop? Music is certainly permitted during the Offertory, as much as I hate guitars at Mass. Or do you mean the Eucharistic Prayer itself?


#11

The musicians are either leading the song, or, participating in the Mass the same way as everyone else. Granted, they do need to do stuff in preparation for the next song, e.g., pull out a song book. However, 'practicing' is not one of the things they should be doing during Mass. That's what practices outside of Mass are for. If this musician is unprepared, they shouldn't play, period. If they aren't going to set a good example to the congregation by being attentive to the Mass, then they shouldn't be accepted as a minister.

BTW, the cheap shot at guitars was uncalled for. There are plenty of organists who are inattentive and distracting as Mass. And there are plenty of organs which sound horrible. And plenty of traditional hymnody which are simply examples of poor musical taste. There is no guarantee of good and worthy music simply because it's an organ and not a guitar! I've attended both good and horrible liturgies from both guitar and organ.


#12

[quote="RedSparklyShoes, post:9, topic:309608"]
I'm not sure why this would be "sadly". If the congregation would like music and the person who is willing and able to play music steps forward and happens to play a guitar instead of a keyboard, how is that any less glorious?

They didn't have organs at the very earliest of the church.

[/quote]

We have organs now and the Church teaches that the pipe organ should be held in highest esteem because it helps lifts our minds to God. I happen to agree with them on this, though I know other instruments are permitted. Congregational singing is bad enough in the Catholic Church, but in my experience guitars simply render even more to silence. But for those who like them, then fine


#13

Thank you all for your comments-- especially the RS reference.

To answer the big question-- he pretty much started plunking around on the guitar as soon as the congregation was kneeling. He stopped when I finally got his attention from across the choir gestured to him to knock it off (about 3/4 through the preparation).

We are a overseas military chapel choir, so don't have an actual music director-- cause of most of our problems. The guy I"m having the problems with apparently grew up in one of those 'hip and cool' congregations as opposed to the more traditional Mass that most Catholics are familiar with and appreciate, so he keeps trying to 'jazz up' the Mass experience.

On the guitar as a whole-- congregants have complained to me about it. Of course, the guitar player stubbornly refuses to believe that. I personally see guitars as more appropriate for campfire retreats as opposed to formal Masses, but-- my opinion aside-- when something the choir is doing is not appreciated by the congregation, that alone is just cause to discontinue the behavior.


#14

can you not ask reliable congregation members to have a word with the guitarest himself since he isn't listening to you. Or if that isn't the way forward then ask the priest to have a word with him as the guitarist needs to learn that he does have to listen to you and learn to understand what he may have done in one church doesn't automatically apply in another. I feel it a bit much for an instant expulsion but the issue needs addressing and he needs to understand this church is a different style church to what he previously been at. My best bet is to get the priest to have a chat with him about it all with the guy. Of course, if the priest is also saying it don't matter then you will have to encourage the congregation, the ones who are complaining to take their complaint to the priest so the priest does know it isn't just you.

I read through communion when I am not singing but this doesn't disturb anyone else. The priest gave me the go ahead to. I won't say it doesn't disturb anyone because they must see that I am reading and wonder what because am brave enough to 'blatently' read through read from the kindle so no one can see what book, since the priest told me to read any book that will help me to ... I know what I am achieving as it was done via guidence. To practice what he is about to do seems rather late. He can do that by silently strumming, going through the motion without plucking the strings. It sounds like you need a compromise with him and you can achieve this via the priest, remembering too on your part he probably is very bored if he has come from a lively type of service and will find your type of service a severe hardship in comparison. If you want him to stay then you will need to somehow accommodate his desire to liven it up. Between the three of you, priest, guitarist and you, you will work out a way forward that don't involve explosion because that is going too far I feel. In time he will probably just leave if the service is too cut and dry for him anyway but do you want that? Or do you want to feel that everyone has a place?

Time for negiotiation I think:thumbsup:


#15

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