What is Your Opinion on the Life Teen Mass?

I don’t really know what to think of it. I hate the loud, raucous music they have at the Mass, and dislike the way they pray the Creed. I know the priest who started it was excommunicated, too.

What do you guys think of it?
Is it really keeping teens at church?

I don’t have a high opinion of LifeTeen Masses for the same reasons as you.

The LifeTeen program as a whole (aside from the Masses) seems to me to be pretty darn good and would be even better if only it weren’t for those darned LifeTeen Masses. But then again, I know a priest who, while he allows the LifeTeen program in his parish, doesn’t allow LifeTeen Masses.

I do think the program is good, but I think the Mass isn’t right for anyone. I’m being raised to believe that a good holy Mass will keep the youth coming, instead of something fun.

Yeah…this thread is going to explode in a hurry. Orchids, it’s not rocket science; if people have issues with the charismatic movement (and with the OF as a whole) the odds are high they will not like the Life Teen Mass :slight_smile:

Anyway, I’m 28 years of age and I’ve been involved (ie; volunteering) in the program for the past six years or so, which makes me biased. Currently I run the R.C.I.T. program as well, which is good times (we have two girls getting confirmed on Pentecost Sunday).

I’ve got zero issues with the Life Teen Mass, and that includes the music (provided that it is mixed well and the volume is at an acceptable level). Of course, I’m in the music ministry as well so that’s even more bias.

I’m ducking out of this now before the RAAAAAAAAAAAAGGGGGGGGGGEEEEEEEEE comes in.

I’m 23 and I don’t like it.

Oh, I didn’t realize that this thread would cause any problems… I’m pretty new here and it is hard finding out what will do what… I’m sorry if I caused trouble.
At our church, I often need to plug my ears. The music is insanely loud. I see people wincing when it gets really loud.

I had to attend on of those. Well, it wasn’t necissarially a Life Teen Mass, but it was sort of similar.

I had mixed feelings at the start of it. I thought I wouldn’t like it because I’m not into the whole upbeat music, charismatic attitude of them. However, when it began, I think they started Mass with an upbeat version of “Holy God, We Praise Thy Name”, I kind of liked it. I was surprised. Typically I don’t like that kind of stuff. I still prefer the more traditional Mass, but it was very uplifting.

If I could, I’d probably go to another one if I had the chance.

Totally bad. The Mass should be God-centered not man-centered. The Mass doesn’t and shouldn’t be changed or focused on “teens.”

I’ve been to one parish that took way tooooo many liberties with the Mass, such as asking all the teens to come up on the altar during the consecration. But I’ve also attended one in a different parish that although it music was upbeat, it was still relevant and not much different from a typical Sunday morning mass except there was a youth group sitting upfront in the pews.

I have to say that the one parish that took the liberties, they tend to take a much more “protestant” approach to all their ministries, so its a parish problem, not a Life Teen Mass problem.

It’s fine, don’t worry about it :slight_smile:

As for volume, talk to the music leader/whoever does sound. If they don’t listen talk to the youth coordinator. And if then no one listens, contact your Priest. A key component of ANY music ministry is…well, sounding good. And bad volume doesn’t make people sound good.

It depends on the church in my experience. I attend two different parishes that say they have Life Teen. In the first parish, the Life Teen mass is LOUD, very contemporary, my son doesn’t like it at all and he is 13. I find it to be so loud that my ears literally hurt, and it feels more like a music concert than a worship service. Perhaps that is me, but it is true. There is a great deal of horsing around before and after Mass, including right in front of the tabernacle.

The second parish now says that they have Life Teen, their program used to be called something else (I totally forget what). Their Life Teen Masses are WAY more controlled and reverential. Yes, the teens do more, but it doesn’t become an excuse for loud music. This fits in with the church atmosphere as a whole - parish #2 doesn’t allow girl altar servers, and is overall more traditional, while parish #1 is significantly more contemporary.

So, I guess it depends on the parish…

We had it in our parish for several years, including the lively Masses, and it was packed by all ages. It was the late Mass on Sundays, traditionally attended by older folks. Those old folks continued to come and enjoyed it. The new pastor stopped the LifeTeen Masses; LifeTeen activities and studies dropped off, and the LifeTeen choir moved to another parish which welcomed them and the youth. The Mass is no longer well attended, the church is nowhere near full for the 5:00 Masses and the kids are gone. Yes. LifeTeen draws the kids and presents the Liturgy to them in a way they can understand and participate in joyfully. It is very close to charismatic, but so are young people, who are ready to have a lively relationship with Jesus.

I was a teen not very long ago, and the Life Teen Mass style just doesn’t seem reverent to me. I know that I should focus on God and that any music we offer him is earthly and doesn’t match up to what the Heavenly Hosts must sing, but still. I avoid any parishes that have this, just because I can’t concentrate on God. If it does help teens get closer to Him though, then I’d be glad that some parishes offer it.

I’ll have nothing to do with it. There is nothing Univeral about it. It just sends me home angry. Not good for my soul.


In my really staunch Traditionalist opinion, I very much dislike it.

No matter how old you are, Mass is about Jesus’ sacrifice - its an occasion where we reflect, in reverence, upon the gift he gave us and beg for his mercy upon us as sinners. It is for HIM and not for our own amusement. All thoughts should be focused on HIM.

I don’t care what the Youth programs chooses to do on their own time, but a Mass is not the place to be “cool” (or charismatic for that matter). Young people don’t NEED that kind of environment to become close to God. The last 2000 years is proof of that – how many teen Saints do we have?

Kids need to be catechized first and foremost - which is something that is severely lacking these days in Catholic Schools, and even more importantly, in the home.


To those that object to anything more upbeat then a pipe organ at Mass, I would recommend the following reading :

1 Chronicles 13:8
1 Chronicles 15:28
Nehemiah 12:27
1 Maccabees 13:51
Psalms 105:2 <-- If you only have time for 1, make it this one…
Psalms 149:3
Sirach 39:15

God loves music. Not just your music, or my music. I’d consider long and hard before declaring that nothing with more of an edge than the Carpenters is pleasing to God.

God rocks!

As a recent convert (entered the church this easter vigil!!!) I have to say I don’t think this type of mass is really focused on God the way it should be. I was part of a very lively church when I was younger (singing/dancing/loud music/clapping etc etc…) and I always felt like although it was “fun” at times, it was never really a full experience. The reverence expressed in a Catholic mass seems to me to be much more fitting for the occasion - receiving the body and blood of Christ! Although AMAZING I also feel it is something very personal that we don’t need loud music to interfere with.

I also think that it is the tradition of our Church that makes it so strong and (at least for me) really drew me in.

Just my 2 cents. :slight_smile:

Dale Fushek, the (then) priest founder of Life Teen, is a train wreck. He was not only excommunicated; in January of this year, Pope Benedict – who supposedly is involved in covering up priest sex abuse – dismissed him from the clerical state after an investigation into sex abuse allegations against him (for which he has been charged with several misdemeanor offenses which I believe are still pending). Before this, he was excommunicated because he was actively participating in ministry despite having been suspended, and despite having been ordered to cease and desist by his bishop, and because he was also holding non-denominational services with another suspended priest. Five years ago, Fushek, the lay co-founder of Life Teen, and another priest were all sued by a man who alleged that the three sexually assaulted him in 1985 at Fushek’s parish. The diocese settled the suit for $100,000.00. (Since 1985, the other priest had served ten years for a sex crime to which he had pled no contest.) Nor was this the first sex-based settlement his diocese had paid out on account of allegations against Fushek: ten years before, the diocese paid out $45,000.00 to settle a sexual harassment claim filed by a former parish employee.

It is true that Life Teen has distanced itself from Dale Fushek and claims to be loyal to the magisterium (though this loyalty is not readily apparent in its liturgies). But why red flags are not raised by the fact that Life Teen is the fruit of the labors of a couple of child molesters is beyond me.

Fantastic point.


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