Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My First Latin Mass

Well I finally attended my first Latin Mass. I felt like had walked back into time. The pageantry, the awesomeness and the spirituality was definitely there. However, it was also highly distracting.

At times I found myself comparing it to an Orthodox Liturgy. The priest and the choir were the main active participants. Incense, a lack of instrumentation and facing the alter all reminded me of the East and of an earlier time.

However, I was distracted by the prayer scarf’s (my wife kept correcting me, I am not allowed to call them dollies!). The vestments, the lack of alter girls and my lack of active participation were all reminders that this was different. Most distracting was I kept thinking, “Michael Corleone , do you reject Satan? “I do” (machine guns fire in the background).

The church was simple. The people were pious. This reminded me of the Catholics I watched as a kid. I will return, perhaps at least once a month. However, I know that for all of the rich history and powerful sense of community worship, if this is what I was first introduced to I would not have become Catholic. I would have felt like an observer, an outsider and not a member. I would have missed the opportunity to proclaim the Creed or offer the sign of friendship. This is a wonderful connection to a larger Universal Church but I am very grateful for Vatican II.

Franciscan Traditional Latin Mass

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