Standing around the altar?


#21

[quote="Elizabeth502, post:19, topic:307253"]
Oh, brother. :rolleyes:

Earth to Priest: Insights into the Gospel is your job and your training. Remember? :banghead:

[/quote]

What got me was that the only insight was: "The first reading was beautiful. Quite poetic." TO which Fr. agreed, then moved on with the Mass.


#22

That is not ok. Catholics do not gather around the altar in a circle like kindergartners. This is just another bad fruit of the spirit of Vatican II. Catholics are to be kneeling at the consecration.


#23

[quote="italian_man, post:22, topic:307253"]
That is not ok. Catholics do not gather around the altar in a circle like kindergartners. This is just another bad fruit of the spirit of Vatican II. Catholics are to be kneeling at the consecration.

[/quote]

Even when we don't circle up we don't kneel. Our mass is in a tiny utility room stuffed with folding chairs, so there's not space. From what others have said, it's okay not to kneel in such a situation (though it does make me quite sad).


#24

Yes, just find another parish. This one is apparently a mess.


#25

[quote="iloveangels, post:24, topic:307253"]
Yes, just find another parish. This one is apparently a mess.

[/quote]

Here we go again

iloveangels - the OP can't find another Parish

try reading this which he posted a little up thread

The nearest parish is a little over an hour's walk away, and they're not much better (parish council presenting budget powerpoints during the homily, that sort of thing), so this isn't really an option. The town (in Los Angeles diocese) I live in, which I won't name except by nickname ("The town of trees, PhD's, and retirees") has maybe 100 Catholic families (it's a fairly large town) and two priests (one at the parish and one at the student center for the seven colleges) The priest at the student center often gets called away to help at some priestless parish somewhere and leaves the students (and many elderly people from the town that attend mass with us) with a "distribution of communion without a priest" service. By the time we figure out that THAT is going on, the only mass left at the other parish (they have two- 7am and 5:30 pm, with & am mass in spanish) is at 5:30. *The only problem with this is that it's rather dark walking back and much of the route does not have streetlights or sidewalks, plus it goes through a rather unsavory area where last week, a student walking back from the store was robbed at gunpoint. Basically, now that it's getting darker earlier, it's nearly impossible to safely attend mass at the other parish. *

Given the situation where this is almost mission territory, I'm grateful for any mass at all. The only reason I've been asking questions about specific liturgical abuses is because I want to know what's correct, I don't want to falsely accuse Fr. of something if what he's doing is okay and just something I'm not used to, and because I know that each moment of the Mass is full of symbolism and meaning and that knowing what the proper way is is the only way to understand that meaning.


#26

[quote="The_Idiot, post:25, topic:307253"]
Here we go again

iloveangels - the OP can't find another Parish

try reading this which he posted a little up thread

[/quote]

Take the bus or stop complaining. Your choice. :cool:


#27

Pray for your priest. As long as he is a validly ordained priest, has the intent on doing what the Church does, uses valid matter concerning the bread and wine that are used, using the words, “This is My Body” “This is My Blood” then it is a valid Mass even though liturgical abuses occur.


#28

[quote="iloveangels, post:26, topic:307253"]
Take the bus or stop complaining. Your choice. :cool:

[/quote]

Which may not exist. Buses are not taxis and they don't always go right where you need.

It sounds like the OP has tried his one other option and is doing what he can with what he has. The Mass was not invalid, just very strange.

Daily Mass is not required and so additional Bible reading or LOTH is a good plan for weekdays.


#29

[quote="waanju, post:23, topic:307253"]
Even when we don't circle up we don't kneel. Our mass is in a tiny utility room stuffed with folding chairs, so there's not space. From what others have said, it's okay not to kneel in such a situation (though it does make me quite sad).

[/quote]

Yes, in the situation that you described it would be OK to stand, however, you are not forbidden from kneeling if you wanted too. It would take up little more space that where you are standing. And in these situations it is still proper to kneel even though it may not be required. When our church was being renovated, Mass was held in our gym and we were encouraged to kneel on the hard wood floor if we could and of course it was understood that some people could not endure that.


#30

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:28, topic:307253"]
Which may not exist. Buses are not taxis and they don't always go right where you need.

It sounds like the OP has tried his one other option and is doing what he can with what he has. The Mass was not invalid, just very strange.

Daily Mass is not required and so additional Bible reading or LOTH is a good plan for weekdays.

[/quote]

You're right, my town does not have any buses OR taxis. The only way I could get transportation would be to rent a car, which is prohibitively expensive.
I'm glad to hear that it isn't invalid, as that was my biggest worry.
Thanks for the ideas of what to do instead. We only have Tuesday masses during Advent, so I'd gone just out of excitement of having more than one mass in a week (some weeks we get no mass at all).

Also, this is small, but I'm a girl, despite my apparently masculine-sounding username. IF I were not, I might be better situated to take the risk of walking to Mass in the dark, but as it is, other female students have met trouble in the area between my school and the sole parish even during the day.


#31

[quote="zab, post:29, topic:307253"]
Yes, in the situation that you described it would be OK to stand, however, you are not forbidden from kneeling if you wanted too. It would take up little more space that where you are standing. And in these situations it is still proper to kneel even though it may not be required. When our church was being renovated, Mass was held in our gym and we were encouraged to kneel on the hard wood floor if we could and of course it was understood that some people could not endure that.

[/quote]

Oh, thanks! I will kneel next week if we have mass! I didn't know I could and thought it might be seen as a distraction.


#32

[quote="Elizabeth502, post:16, topic:307253"]
Ay, there's the rub, Timothy. :)

This mostly-absymally catechized generation of Catholics interprets standing around the altar in a very different way than you and your Benedictine friends interpreted it. In the typical modern parish (not a monastery Mass open to the publc), it is one more gesture of informality. It is one more gesture of apology, on the part of some misguided priests, for a distinction between the ministerial priesthood and the royal priesthood of believers. It is one more imprudent and embarrassing attempt to import secular notions of "participation," "opportunity" :rolleyes:, and "equalty" into the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, with its completely non-secular and apolitical paradigm.

During the times I myself have seen this done (the "invitation," the "welcoming" people forward), it is accompanied by a casual air on the part of the priest and a corresponding casual behavior on the part of those who come to the altar, whose body language mirrors what has just been modeled for them.

Look, if a priest feels apologetic for being a priest, he should never have sought ordination, and I guess he should never hear confessions or perform the other sacraments either After all, that would be setting up a "distinction" between him and his flock. (Yeah, no kidding.)

[/quote]

We really have to be careful about presuming to know the intentions and motivations behind what people do. Your comments seem indicate that you do know what motivates people - apologetic feeling, gesture of apology - that sort of thing. Forgive me if I misread.

I do think many read their own liturgical preference - what some mistakenly call spirituality - into any given liturgy, and then overreact when it does not meet their expectations.

My point was to point out that gathering around the altar is an ancient practice in the Catholic Church. It is not universally condemned by the Church. That was my point.

-Tim-


#33

[quote="TimothyH, post:32, topic:307253"]
We really have to be careful about presuming to know the intentions and motivations behind what people do. Your comments seem indicate that you do know what motivates people - apologetic feeling, gesture of apology - that sort of thing. Forgive me if I misread.

I do think many read their own liturgical preference - what some mistakenly call spirituality - into any given liturgy, and then overreact when it does not meet their expectations.

-Tim-

-Tim-

[/quote]

Thank you, Tim. That is one of the major reasons I initially asked this question, to make sure I wasn't applying my own expectations and injustly think that the priest was doing wrong.

-Julia


#34

[quote="waanju, post:33, topic:307253"]
Thank you, Tim. That is one of the major reasons I initially asked this question, to make sure I wasn't applying my own expectations and injustly think that the priest was doing wrong.

[/quote]

It's good to ask. He might have been doing wrong. Some think so. I don't know the rules.

My own opinion is that I don't like it in a parish setting. That's just me and my opinion isn't really worth the words used to communicate it.

But it is an accepted practice in parts of the Church, especially monastic communites, because of what a monastic community is and how it functions.

Again, my point was not to argue that this specific instance was an abuse or not. I simply wanted to point out that gathering around the altar is not universally condemned. I have experienced it myself, in a setting where it is appropriate, and it was a spectacular privilege to be able to do it.

-Tim-


#35

[quote="waanju, post:30, topic:307253"]
You're right, my town does not have any buses OR taxis. The only way I could get transportation would be to rent a car, which is prohibitively expensive.
I'm glad to hear that it isn't invalid, as that was my biggest worry.
Thanks for the ideas of what to do instead. We only have Tuesday masses during Advent, so I'd gone just out of excitement of having more than one mass in a week (some weeks we get no mass at all).

Also, this is small, but I'm a girl, despite my apparently masculine-sounding username. IF I were not, I might be better situated to take the risk of walking to Mass in the dark, but as it is, other female students have met trouble in the area between my school and the sole parish even during the day.

[/quote]

That is absolutely a reason to avoid walking back after dark. Please stay safe. I will be praying for you.


#36

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:35, topic:307253"]
That is absolutely a reason to avoid walking back after dark. Please stay safe. I will be praying for you.

[/quote]

Thanks for the prayers. And yes, that's why I stopped going to the other parish after the time change.


#37

Just found this from a quick Googling: ewtn.com/expert/answers/non-ordained.htm

Evidently the question was furnished to the Congregation for Divine Worship to render a judgment. They said what we already know to be true: it's not to be done.

Sacrosanctum Concilium explicitly states that unauthorized additions to the liturgy are always illicit. This was unauthorized (i.e., it isn't in the rubrics and isn't a voluntary option to be used at the discretion of the priests or episcopal conference), hence it is illicit.


#38

[quote="sw85, post:37, topic:307253"]
Just found this from a quick Googling: ewtn.com/expert/answers/non-ordained.htm

Evidently the question was furnished to the Congregation for Divine Worship to render a judgment. They said what we already know to be true: it's not to be done.

Sacrosanctum Concilium explicitly states that unauthorized additions to the liturgy are always illicit. This was unauthorized (i.e., it isn't in the rubrics and isn't a voluntary option to be used at the discretion of the priests or episcopal conference), hence it is illicit.

[/quote]

And illicit Mass does not mean that the Mass is invalid. People should not be made to feel guilty for attending an illicit Mass under situations such as described by the OP. Sometimes an illicit Mass is the only option available.
ewtn.com/vexperts/showmessage.asp?number=352322&Pg=Forum9&Pgnu=6&recnu=141


#39

[quote="TimothyH, post:32, topic:307253"]
We really have to be careful about presuming to know the intentions and motivations behind what people do. Your comments seem indicate that you do know what motivates people - apologetic feeling, gesture of apology - that sort of thing. Forgive me if I misread.

[/quote]

Yes, you did misread.

"Intentions" become apparent with a variety of signs, including:

~the context in which someone suggests something
~the behavior before and after suggesting it
~the language before, during, and after suggesting it
~the general direction of the priest's comments during homilies, his "history" of his message, or messages, to his congregation.

All of that I take into account when ascertaining the reasons why a priest, or anyone, would do something. In this case I was talking about particular contexts, just as you were talking about particular contexts.

I don't care what the "motivation" is of the priest. I care very much about how misguided a particular suggestion would be, and 100% of the time when "gathering around the altar" has been suggested in non-monastic Masses I have attended, it is always within a context of "lay participation." (Merely proving that the priest himself has not been properly catechized, as a lay person silently in the pew, raising his heart and mind to God, and being attentive, is a full participant in the Sacrifice of the Mass, relative to his proper role.)


#40

[quote="zab, post:38, topic:307253"]
And illicit Mass does not mean that the Mass is invalid. People should not be made to feel guilty for attending an illicit Mass under situations such as described by the OP. Sometimes an illicit Mass is the only option available.
ewtn.com/vexperts/showmessage.asp?number=352322&Pg=Forum9&Pgnu=6&recnu=141

[/quote]

Okay thanks. This brings me great relief.
-Julia


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