See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mass Chat: Summer distractions...



Heated distractions, distinctions, disintegrations...
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I wish I had never read a blog post on what people wear to church and immodesty.  I wish I'd never read an article about what does the prayer really say and those slavish translations from Latin.  I wish I never heard a 'hymn' set to pop music.  I wish that I never watched a Michael Voris video.  These experiences come back to haunt you - garbage in, garbage out - as they say.  (I wish I had a cigarette.) 
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Despite the fact I spent an hour in prayer before, I was still distracted throughout Mass.  A family of little girls sat in front of me.  One little girl between the ages of 5 and 6 was performing wildly for me and her dad who sat next to her.  She was gyrating throughout Mass, vogueing, performing acrobatics, twirling, climbing on her dad's shoulders during the consecration, and kicking the back of the pew in front of her.  All I could think of is Michael Voris and his video titled, "Everyone loves kids, right?"  I have no idea what the video is about - but...
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So Mass was tough.  Distracted as I was, I kept thinking that the hot looking lector in the really tight white jeans maybe should have worn a shawl - the EMHC's could have used a bit of cover up as well.  Normally I pay no attention to this stuff - but this time I was assaulted by such petty, sanctimonious judgements of my neighbor - impatient with the Gather music and the lady-cantor who sings from her throat instead of her stomach.   I battled such temptations all through Mass, until communion - when they suddenly vanished, and I was recollected and at peace.  After Mass the church emptied out quickly and there I was...
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Sheesh!  I hate it when I get all holier than thou like that.
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Fractal Catholicism.
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This is big!  This is really big!
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What about that Ordinary Form vs. Extraordinary Form deal?  I think about that on occasion since I often use the readings from Mass for Lectio.  The readings are totally different in the Extraordinary Form.  I don't understand why the calendars remain different either?  If the reforms of Vatican II were followed correctly - shouldn't the EF be reformed as well?  Why, how, can the Church have two different Masses/liturgies and call it the same rite?  Where is the unity in that?  Especially since the OF is so denigrated by EF devotees?  It is one thing to use the Latin - the OF can, and in some cases should be said in Latin - but what we are talking about here is the completely different EF from the OF.
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I think this is a very big deal which goes beyond slavish translations.  Do the EF people intend to do away with the OF?  I think they do.
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Call me crazy, stupid, nuts, but it sure seems to me that rupture thing is getting wider and wider.  I love Benedict XVI, yet while he has been hailed as the Pope Of Christian Unity, it sure seems to me the Catholic Church in the States is fractalizing.  
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Trivia:  Did you realize that fractals weren't even invented, identified, or taught when I was in school?  I know!  And I'm so young!  I knew about them however because I used to drop acid.  Sunshine.
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Art: A Fractal Church, by Vidom

209 comments:

  1. You've said it one way - I bitch about it in another way on my blog. But it's all the same. To me, the goodie-goodys versus the people who just want to get on with it and have it be real.

    The Catholic blogs have done more damage to my spiritual life than I can calculate. And yet I persist because there are people like you who make it worthwhile.

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  2. Terry, I think I should have posted my "Mass Chat" here:

    All I can say is, I just got back from the Tridentine Latin Mass, and never, I and I mean never, EVER, have I seen so many selfish, self-absorbed parents in "veils" and creepy "modest",ugly clothing, completely oblivious to any one else at Mass. Their children climbed over pews, up and down aisles, screamed, cried, threw things, they got up, they got down; however, never once, did it seem to occur to these creeps that they should remove their children, or that they should not bring these children to Mass. Worse than ANYTHING I have EVER seen at a NO Mass. That is it. I am now convinced that we live in a world of barbarians. These "traddies", or whatever you call them, are no different than the same parents who bring their mibehaved children to the NO Mass: they are all self-indulgent narcissists who are so wrapped up in themselves that they don't even have enough awareness of other people to be ashamed of them selves. And, what none of them understand is that they create a near occasion of sin via their rude and thoughtless behavior. I was so angry that I said something to a woman and asked her if she would be kind enough to remove her child as I was unable to concentrate or pray. I haven't the fortitude to even go into how rude she was in reply. Suffice it to say that I did not go to Holy Communion. NO Mass? TLM?Please, as an article I recently read said, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, SHUT UP.

    Say it in Swaheli, but, for the LOVE OF GOD SHUT UP.

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  4. I have to run - I may be offline for awhile - so i'm not ignoring you.

    Charlotte - I know!

    Maria - They can be like that too.
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    Little Way - I'm totally serious with the post.

    Gotta run.

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  5. Distractions during Mass has been my buggaboo for several months now. I've gotten better handling them, I think, after I made the conscious decision to stop judging the charity and orthodoxy of others around me based on how they dress, act, etc. That does NOT mean that I still don't feel sadness when I see the teen girl popping gum in soccer shorts 2 pews in front of me and I wanna pull her hair. Nor does it mean I don't wish the family of four running in at the last minute would at least pretend to show some reverence by performing an authentic genuflection vs. the half-bob & dive into the pew (or nothing at all). Don't even get me started about the loud talking in the vestibule before & after Mass.

    I let it go. Not up to me to control (I have a touch of OCD, maybe that's my problem). I pray for the grace to love them and hope that I'm not as big a jackass as the thoughts running through my head and hope they love me, too. No telling what I look like to them. I used to care, cuz that's how I was raised. But I try to focus on pleasing God. That's all.

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  6. Ter: Interesting point you made. I agree. If there is truly to be equality between the EF and the OF then the readings and calendars should be made the same. I feel bipolar sometimes (quit laughing!) as I attend both forms and I have to research which readings and which Saint or Solemnity is today in either calendar - they rarely align.

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  7. @Maria - It's just the opposite here. The FSSP parish has the most well behaved children I've ever seen. And if one does start to cry (little ones) they are whisked out to the cry room. Of course, the priest has requested that it be that way.

    The NO parishes are bedlam...

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  8. As to making the two forms of liturgy the same (calendar and such), how about making the NO the same. Going to a NO Mass in a different church is a crap shoot. Is it going to be a happy-clappy parish or some other kind? Only since Vat II have Catholics had to "church shop." Isn't that odd??

    When I was 13 my Mom, brother, and I traveled by car for the entire summer. We attended church from the mid-west to the entire west coast and all points in between. Mass was always exactly the same. That's comforting...

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  9. Duchess - they had cars back then? LOL!!

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  10. Terry,

    Just yesterday I was thinking about a stunt I pulled at Mass when I was about 3 years old. Everyone was kneeling and I jumped up onto the pew and ran back and forth banging my shoes and dancing and yelling. I remember screaming because I didn't get to put the money in the basket, etc... As I recited the Joyful Mysteries, I thought about Jesus as a boy and how excited he must have been to go up to Jerusalem and go to the Temple. In his excitement, he ran off, saddening his parents. I'm sure you had your moments as well. Kids will be kids. When I hear a kid screaming in church I try to thank God that another soul is alive to praise Him. I did say, I try...

    "I wish I had a cigarette." I wish I could quit...pray for me.

    "but this time I was assaulted by such petty, sanctimonious judgements of my neighbor"

    No, Terry, it isn't sanctimonious or petty. The things you describe are symptoms of a culture that has lost its love and awe of the sacred. You shouldn't have to lower your standards. I do think it is the approach that needs adjusting. Remember that everyone is at a different place with these things, everything has gotten confused. They don't need to be shunned, you should love them as members of the Body of Christ, but that doesn't mean you have to like immodest or inappropriate and disrespectful attire and behavior.

    As for the calendar...this is a very touchy issue for me. While I think putting two forms of Mass and two different calendars on a priest's shoulders is burdensome, I have a deep, deep love for the EF calendar. It is different, it is special, it highlights the day's feast in a totally different way. When you participate in it daily, you'll know what I mean.

    "I love Benedict XVI, yet while he has been hailed as the Pope Of Christian Unity, it sure seems to me the Catholic Church in the States is fractalizing."

    Because you're looking at this with the wrong set of eyes. What I say to priests who say things like this to me is, "We have over a billion Catholics from every walk of life and all sorts of cultural backgrounds with all sorts of spiritual needs. Thank God we have a pope who understands that and tries to make a place for everyone."

    As for banishing the OF Mass...I pray for the day when the OF needs an indult to be celebrated. (Of course in praying that, I pray for unity within the Church FIRST, to get to a place where we all pray at one Mass together.)

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  11. Just for Terry: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jk0dBZ1meio

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  12. Anonymous1:31 PM

    I am in the midst, as we speak of constructing a new blog, to be called Restore Silence in the Catholic Church. I for one am not "just glad that they ( undisciplined, screaming children) are there". This is the common misguided notions under which many labor. Clarke--I think that you are wrong. These people do need to be shunned. They need to be called on the carpet. If I look at one more irrepsonsible parent smirk at me as her children are literally running in churhc while she tells me children are a gift of God, I am going to SCREAM IN CHURCH and tell her to remove her children. It is false humility to claim that we are sanctimonious and judgemental for asking that for one hour I might have the requisite silence to worship my God in silence.

    A big part of the problem is that we no longer have nuns making certain that you kept your mouth shut. They were not ONE bit afraid of helping shut-up if you stupidly chose, of your own volition, to talk IN LINE, ON THE WAY TO CHURCH. Forget about what they might do to you in you had the gaul to TALK IN CHURCH. They might pull you by your ear out of church. Lord.

    MARIA

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  13. Bet you wouldn't have to deal with all this fun at the 6:00 or 7:00 am Mass.

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  14. I just attended, rather, prayed the NO in english, still the old translation of course. I'd just like to point out that I am perfectly pleased with the Novus Ordo when celebrated correctly as I am pleased with the Tridentine when celebrated correctly. In some ways, the Tridentine does a better job at focusing the believers. I am not against the vernacular in the liturgy, although I think that for most important occasions, Latin should be used. Ad orientem worship will probably help. I think as far as what Pope Benedict wants (or it might just be me) is the tertia via. He wants the NO to be instilled with everything the Tridentine has going for it, and for the Tridentine to be instilled with everything the NO has going for it, the mutual enrichment. At this point, you need the popularization of both of them for this to happen, but in the long run, I think what he wants is a modified Tridentine which has an official translation in the vernaculars etc.

    I mean, think about it, it's only been 42 years since the current Missal was promulgated. That's a short time. The development of liturgy from the Church Fathers until Trent was more than 1000 years with all sorts of usages, rites etc. What I see happening is either America getting its own "rite" or "usage" or this tertia via. I'm hoping for the tertia via, though probably not in our lifetime.

    Re: distractions, I was once told by a very wise priest that distractions are occasions for grace, that everything that can distract can be offered on the paten. That helped me very much, but it's so hard to not judge...

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  15. Cor blimey! Maria is right. It's Nun's we need. I remember Nuns at Mass and they do make you shape-up, just looking at them makes one self aware, or one looking back at you. We need more Nuns!!!! One Nun really made me quite ill when I was younger mindyou, and full of fear, so we need nice Nuns aswell......

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  16. Anonymous1:54 PM

    At my local EF, the priest is SO intent on silence, that he actually commented during one homily that: if you cough, do it into a handkerchief or your sleeve,. And if you have children or babies at mass, remove them if they make noise. He wants silence and he gets it; there are rarely children at this mass and I think that's because it's a "that's how we used to do it in the good old days" mentality. Babies and nursing mothers and young children just didn't go to mass decades ago in my area.

    My grandmothers told me women in general stayed home almost all the time; when in public they were expected to be dressed, with hats and gloves and never with nursing babies. That was for hearth and home only along with kids should be seen and not heard thinking.
    Again, at least in my area.

    Nor'easter gal

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  17. When I was 13 my Mom, brother, and I traveled by car for the entire summer. We attended church from the mid-west to the entire west coast and all points in between. Mass was always exactly the same. That's comforting...

    Adrienne: Right, cuz guess what? We all believed in the one true faith. Was this back when every body still believed in the real presence, still believed that Christ institued the priesthood, still believed in original sin and Confession.

    THE NOISE AND THE ABUSE ARE THE RESULT OF DOCTRINAL ERRORS.


    Re: distractions, I was once told by a very wise priest that distractions are occasions for grace, that everything that can distract can be offered on the paten. That helped me very much, but it's so hard to not judge...


    NW Thomas--It is well beyond distractions. The offer it up/reparation argument is BS. It is a cop out for adults, priest and parents and parishoners, who do not want to assume responsibility for ensuring decorum. I am NOT buying it ANYMORE. It is past time for this problem to be remedied. Restoring faith in the divine presence is where priests need to start. Preaching the gospel wouldn't hurt either. Homestly, we are WORSE than Protestants.

    Ten million different forms of the Mass. Ridiculous. I can certainly understand what you are saying about where Pope B is headed. In the mean time: look out. Soon they will be chanding diapers in the pews. I surprised they are not eating in between prayers.

    Melody: You are right about going early. I am going to try this, but don't you see: we have to put ourselves through all of these gymnastics to avert abuses, noise, heresy. When they put Christ back in His Church it wil change. Until then, Church is now a nearer occasion of sin for me.

    I am sorry for going on, but I am a daily communicant and I CAN'T take it anymore. I am now convinved: Satan has a strong hold in the Church. Priests can't corrupt the Gospel for forty years and sexually abuse children for decades on without consequence. We can't expect that somehow we are not going to pay.

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  18. Anonymous2:16 PM

    Margaret Mary is really Maria. Sorry. I am fiddling w/ google, trying to set up a new blog.

    MARIA

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  19. I can Walk to my parish church down the street, about 5 minutes at a slow pace. But...the pews are arranged in a half-circle, so we get to look (in)directly at each instead of at the altar...the floor slops downward from back of church to the priest, suddenly seeming small...the music 'ministry' is Very Important, right up front, often seeming to compete with the priest, loudly. the large, lovely, red carpeted place is like a quiet auditorium, depressingly void of the visual stories of all I believe and hold dear. Just a few impassive modern statues. The stained glass colors are in a variety of squares & rectangles, no images. The last priest (a sweet guy, with out guile)suddenly Vanished after a brief retreat, having only been here less than a year, I put my ear to the ground and heard "the population" did not really like him, so he was gone. Upon the death of my father I no longer felt compelled to go here: NOW I drive about 30 minutes to another parish, so very reverent, one of those Antique Buildings on The Historical Registry (phew thank goodness) with a Holy young guy as Priest, everyone faces front, we are each alone with God yet bound together. I sit up front, in the third pew, so as not to get distracted because yes, there are a lot of people who are there just because they have to, but now I don't have to see it. lots of children, even on Saturday evening, all quiet. The music comes from above, a balcony, in the rear. Whish I could bring you with me....LH (oh - and I can stay after Mass to pray and nobody pays me any mind, or stops to "chat")

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  20. MargaretMary, don't get histrionic. Many priests offer beautiful Mass, in appropriate circumstances while preaching the gospel and reminding people not to sin, even in the NO; while some priests did sexually abuse children, the vast majority of priests do not and did not.

    Do not make the mistake of focusing on priests as the only possible abusers; sexual abuse is more likely to take place in the home and the perp is far more likely to be a relative or family friend than to be a priest.

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  21. Anonymous2:51 PM

    Nan: I am fifty seven. You may perceive my comments to be histrionic. What I am is ANGRY. I am a psychiatric social worker. I know quite a bit about sexual abuse, both in, and out of, the Church. I have forgotten more many will ever know about abuse. I am describing MY experiences. Yours may be altogether different. I am in Washington DC. I believe you are in the midwest? BTW, I apologize. My name is Maria, not Margaret Mary. This was a blogger error.
    MARIA

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  22. MargaretMary, Yes, the distractions are unfortunate, but while they are a reality, using them for prayer is about the best option anyone has.

    The Ten Million Masses (which could happen) has happened before, as I said. Until Trent, there were different Masses in almost every region. The form was basically the same (based of course on the description of the early Mass by Justin Martyr) but the variations were endless. Until Trent. And then even afterwards, the Eastern Church has a multiplicity of rites. Only in the West has One Rite been so important. Now, I agree that One Rite is a good thing, but it's also easy to see how multiple rites could spring up especially with how spread out the Church is.

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  23. OK--this blog has gone nuts, and it doesn't even have anything to do with gays! (For the most part!)

    Time for another time out T-man. Call me when everyone's back on their meds and it's normal here again. Buh-bye.

    Ace

    PS. Sounds like a good lot of you aught to just go to Mass in a monastery or nunnery where there are no kids, no lectors or EMs, or women (or men) in revealing clothes to distract you from your pious thoughts.

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  24. Anonymous3:08 PM

    How very charitable of you, John. You must not attend daily Mass, lol. Sorry, I am allowed, say once a year to complain about what I have to endure seven days a week. Oh, and by the way, I not a Saint!

    MARIA

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  25. Anonymous3:18 PM

    John: It might behoove you to re-read your last post and consider the "piety" of your own thoughts, mon frere. Buy-bye.
    MARIA

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  26. Great commentary and article (I actually like what Voris has to say most of the time:)). Possible helpful suggestions:

    1. Try to go to daily Mass (Jesus daily makes one more powerful than just receiving Him on Sundays). Power=patience.
    2. Go early on Sundays (7:00-7:30). Fewer little kids, and nary an ill-dressed teen.
    3. Remember Confession Saturday evening before Mass.
    4. Recite the rosary.
    5. Recite the rosary.
    6. Novus Ordo Masses that are respectful are awesome. We just got back from a respectful TLM; it too was awesome. I don't understand the different calendars either. Fortunately for me, it doesn't bother me that much.
    7. If you don't like the way your parish conducts Mass, mention your grievances to the priest; ours actually listened once. And if that doesn't solve anything, then find a church that you like. They are out there (we now have three to go to in our area that more than suffice when WE pick the day and the time).

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  27. Anonymous3:22 PM

    I noticed all those things before I read any Catholic blog or forum, now I'm just glad that I've found others that agree with me.

    And eah, why do we have 2 different calendars? Maybe they never should have changed the Mass in the first place.

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  28. Anonymous3:41 PM

    Terry,
    Do you have any other options for Mass? Is this the only church near you? If these things are bothering you at times maybe another more traditional parish might be helpful. We have one church in my town and most of the time I wish I was in a bigger city with a more traditional parish to attend.
    Andrew

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  29. Maria,

    An aunt related a story to me once that I want to share with you. She was at Mass one morning when she was a little girl and the side door of the church was propped open. As she was going up to communion 2 cars slammed into each other on the side of the church and startled, she turned her head for a moment to see what had happened. She took communion and went back to her pew. A nun yanked her off the kneeler, dragged her down the aisle, threw her out into the vestibule and slapped the stuffing out of her for turning her head as she approached the rail.

    My aunt ultimately left the Church and died without being reconciled. That incident had been eating her up all those years. I wonder how differently things might have turned out had that nun taken a different course, had corrected out of love, rather than anger.

    Remember to employ charity and prudence in all things.

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  30. Anonymous4:00 PM

    Clarke: I am very sorry to hear that. This is not the kind of behavior to which I referred. Always good to take the advice you dispense, mon frere...
    MARIA

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  31. I'll bring up the "gay" topic.. :)

    Utah State University is conducting an online study concerning LGBT Members of the LDS Church (Mormons). Interesting news article linked here :

    http://www.ksl.com/?nid=157&sid=16607782

    Sara

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  32. Anonymous5:20 PM

    I am concerned about these adoration programs in the parishes. Well intentioned Novus Ordo parishioners get these programs installed in their parishes and then they don't make sure if 2 people have signed up for each hour. They sacrilegiously leave Jesus alone and exposed, who lovingly sits and waits for them to come. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.

    Oh! That Dreaded Day is coming! The Novus Ordo Church will burn, consumed in the wrath of our Lord like the Hebrews left to die in the desert. 40 years Almighty God endured that generation, yet they would not rend their hearts unto Him and so He vowed they would never see the promised land, not even Moses. How much more this wicked generation enslaved by the corruption of this New Age?

    There is blood on your hands!

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  33. This whole thing convinces me once again that its all a bunch of self-righteous bullcrap. I say that to no one in particular.

    I say it as someone who has a hard time dragging my ass to Mass, has a hard time trying to pray and no let my thoughts wander, and not be afraid that if I don't get everything right I have hell to pay. I have a hard time trusting and believing at all.

    And yet, I'm one of the few people I know, one of the few Catholics I know, who even bothers to try to make it to mass - even on Sundays most Catholics skip out.

    So in all honesty, if some kid is crying - boo frickin' hoo. At least his parents brought him to Mass. At least they care enough to even be there. But they are voluntarilty there and don't HAVE TO BE, as people had to in times past. Maybe that's a cop-out.

    I wonder what Mass was like in the 1500s, I bet it was a zoo, with kids crying and mothers nursing and everything. I'm not saying that things SHOULD be that way, and I am not saying that reverence is lacking - but some people need to cut the holy card crap.

    And yes, in the past children were to be seen and not heard, and women never left the house and wore hats and gloves in public. Why must we assume that people in the past were therefore more upright and less sinful than we are? I bet a lot of them were sanctimonious bitches too. I've also heard of couples in the past who avoided seeing each other naked as much as possible (even when, you know). Perhaps we should do that too? Maybe we should take away the right to vote from women and forbid them from teaching in universities?

    Reminds me of the trad idiot I once read saying we should all expose only our face and hands, because obviously that is how people dressed in holier times and why not, orthodox Jews do it? And only buttoned shirts were acceptable.

    That jackass can come live here in Baton Rouge in July.

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  34. Anonymous 5:20 - Think of how many souls your sanctimonious self-righteousness drives from Christ.

    Oh, the charity you exude. I bet you feel lucky that you're one of the few saved, don't you? That you have discovered the true and hidden Church wile the rest of us perish in our "Novus Ordo" parishes, huh? All those people in India and Latin America and Africa - all on the road to hell, but American traddies like yourself have kept the true Church alive.

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  35. michael r.5:49 PM

    I agree with Maria. I miss the nuns who scared us from even thinking of strepping out of line. Come to think of it, all of my parish priests were the exact same way, if not even more intimidating. Don't know how I survived as a cradle Catholic....:)

    Best comment of the YEAR on Catholic blogdom----"I wonder what Mass was like in the 1500s, I bet it was a zoo, with kids crying and mothers nursing and everything."

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  36. Anonymous5:56 PM

    Tremble while you still can.

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  37. Anonymous - you are not on the side of God. Satan can snatch you in your "love of tradition" and paranoia as well. Especially in your rebellion against the Pope.

    "Tremble while you still can" - Really? You're a Christian? Who's your patron Saint, Tertullian? Oh yeah, he died a heretic ...

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  38. @ LarryD - we had cars but they had peddles...heh

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  39. I'm sorry if my comments sound confrontational to anyone. I'm just struggling with even the basic idea of prayer, faith, and devotion, and I get so sick of worrying about perfection.

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  40. Topherdone6:15 PM

    Mercury 5:33 - Well said.

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  41. Mercury---

    I struggle too, especially with prayer...what is a comfort is that we do not pray as we ought, and the Holy Sprit helps us with His groanings....

    And I think that if He helps us with prayer, He helps us with alot of other things too if we put forth the tiniest effort. So I don't worry too much about the distractions everywhere, they will happen, nothing I can do about it except do what I can. The Holy Spirit intercedes for us and with us.

    Don't let the traddies drive you crazy..they were gettingto me for awhile until I had a very wise priest tell me that I don't answer to them. They can live their life however they want, and when they get on my case becase I'm not living MY life according to THEIR standards, I just blow them off. I may be a laid-back California girl in exile, but methinks that many of them are wearing their undies a few sizes too small..

    And I know what you mean about Baton Rouge in July..I was in Mississippi one summer, "glowing" amongst us ladies has a whole new meaning..everything runs in low gear..and I never could find a mascara or liner that didn't run. But now I can enjoy the delicacy called "oyster on the half-shell."

    Sara

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  42. Sara - where in Mississippi? The whole Gulf South is like this. I have Saudi Arabian and Venezuelan students who complain about the heat.

    It's the humidity.

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  43. mercury, i hear ya. but i think traddies with concentration issues have a point, too. i like what a commenter said in this thread about just offering it up. actually, that's good advice. and the advice about taking it to your parish pastor and let him address it. more good advice. don't beat yourself up with the thoughts of 'am i doing this or that right enough.' dude, you strive to be faithful and kind and that i'm sure makes the baby Jesus smile.

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  44. I also have to agree with Mercury 5:33.
    Don't know what the temperature is elsewhere; here it is 102°. I think the heat is making people cranky.

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  45. Anonymous6:54 PM

    Mercury-
    I thank you for your comments! I love Terry's blog but reading all of the comments up to yours was just too much!
    I am the mother of three small children. We take them to Mass every Sunday and try as we might they are not silent. Our pastor loves children and KNOWS that it is near impossible for a child to be silent for an hour! Especially children with ADHD! Our children are not crazy but they are CHILDREN and at least they are WELCOMED by our pastor!
    We are trying our very best to live holy lives and raise holy children. I am positive Jesus loves having kids at Mass even if they distract you a bit! I will echo what others have said...try the 7AM Mass if kids are too much!
    And I must say, no wonder families are leaving our Church with people such as yourselves glaring at them and giving rude comments when they are TRYING to raise their children in the faith!

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  46. Mercury, I needed a kick in the pants for a while to pray too. I prayed the Office everyday, but it was dry for me. There were devotional prayers I wanted to say everyday, but they were on the backs of different holy cards and in 6 different prayer books and in old missals that I inherited that were falling apart.

    I decided to take all the devotional prayers I love to say everyday and photocopy them and I made my own prayerbook at Kinkos.

    I divided the book into: Morning, Noon, 3PM, Night and Rosary. I didn't go overboard, just the prayers I really wanted to say everyday. I included pictures that inspire me to aid me in my devotional prayer. I intersperse them with the hours from the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It has been very effective and keeps me on a routine.

    Try daily Mass or spend some time in mental prayer before the Blessed Sacrament a few times a week.

    Do whatever you need to do to encourage yourself to pray. As JPII used to say, "Don't just take time to pray, make time to pray."

    In the meantime, don't let the loons get to you.

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  47. Mercury--I was at Keesler AFB on the Mississippi Gulf Coast ging to Air force Technical school in 1987-88...I had been raised in the Caklifornia deserts and was no stranger to 110-115 degrees....but the humidity was something else..loved the Gulf beaches though and ocean water like bath water...

    i was in Saudi one time when the temp reached 130 degrees...even the Arabs complained that it was hot...and humidity to beat...yet they'd play soccer in that heat...you'd almost hate to come inside with the A/C as it would be a 50-60 degree temp drop...hard on the old bod.

    Sara

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  48. Clark, I wish I could pray that much. But honestly, it's hard to even care sometimes - though I know I should.

    I haven't the foggiest how to pray with cards and images - and I pray the Rosary every now and then, but I don't know how to have devotion to the Blessed Mother. I just don't understand it, and I don't know how to feel close to her.

    Plus, with my specific scrupulosity issues, Saints in general, including the Blessed Mother, just make me anxious and worried about how I'm not pure enough because I don't want to be a celibate, and because I want to have a marriage and enjoy it.

    So prayer just always feels like a sham. I think my problem is that I assume being holy means being a Puritan (no secular entertainment or interests) or a hardcore ascetic (don't enjoy that beer or taco), or a holy card image.

    Right now I barely plod through a morning offering and three Haily Marys morning and evenings, and say the Rosary most days, but getting little out of it. My Faith is very weak. :(

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  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  50. Hi. I'm Sharon Gee.

    I am currently visiting faith communities to impart the wisdom I have learned. One thing you can do each morning and evening is just stretch that body. Stretch every limb, feel the toxins release and set yourself free. Spend time honoring the higher love within you. Greet it at the dawn and upon moments of beauty and in the midst of miracles. Be in tune with your environment, there are miracles happening all around you. Love is being born with each new minute. Avoid putting toxins into your body. Keep your vessel clean to be a ready channel for higher love to pass through you. Before ending your day remember to forgive. Sit and with outstretched arms embrace each person who has wounded you and tell them that you forgive them. Most importantly forgive yourself. I acknowledge higher love within each of you. I am Sharon Gee be with love today.

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  51. Terry, I've experienced the same thing since I began reading blogs.

    One of the 'hard sayings' of Jesus for me is often "let the children come to me". I'm more often like the apostles shooing them away (only in my head). I'm single with no children and I do tend to be bothered by restless children more than someone who is a parent. I fully acknowledge that many times the problem isn't the child or even the parents (though sometimes it is), it's me. I've begun in the last year or so to say a little prayer of thanks that the parents are at Mass and are attempting to raise their young uns in the faith. Though, I must confess, many times that prayer is still offered through clenched teeth.

    This whole discussion reminds me of a medieval mystery story I read which is set in a Benedictine convent. One of the nuns recalls that in her early years as a nun she had to approach her superior after making a mistake in praying the Office. The mistake occurred because the nun was distracted by another nun's singing voice and way she prayed the psalms. The superior's counsel to the young nun was to consider that she didn't know how her voice sounded to her sisters. She might very well be a trial to one or more of them as this particular sister was to her.

    While I'm distracted by children, do I distract others when I wear slacks or because I don't wear a veil? (Rhetorical question) People complain about what priests do that distract them, but who considers what we do that distracts the priest? We all seem to be desiring the perfect worship experience. If that's the case, we'll always be disappointed this side of Heaven. We need to get over ourselves.

    TLW - your last comment reminded me of this post by Simcha Fisher: http://simchafisher.wordpress.com/2010/09/27/morning-prayer/

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  52. Frankly, if I went to a church where I felt the need on a daily basis to admonish someone on how to discipline themselves or their kids, I'd have to find another Mass

    Joyce: You mistakenly assume it is one Mass. Perhaps the the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is a decidely more reverential, staid and civil affair in the Churches and Masses you frequent in Philly. Not so in Washington DC. I repeat, this is not an isolated incident. It is,instead, a pervasive pattern. This is also more than a matter of personal predeliction. The sacrilege I witness is the product of doctrinal error. Priests cannot convey or command respect for the Real Presence when they themselves do not believe in the Real Presence. How in the name of God do we expect people to behave? As they: as if at train station or restaurant.

    SCC-- I am not concerned about "distractions". Rather, I am concerned about sacrilegeous behavior and the egregious disrespect that is shown to our Lord and my concomittant inability to worship Him.

    If expecting silence in Church is expecting perfection, we have a long way to go my friend. Did you know? There can be no reverence without silence.

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  53. Anonymous9:13 PM

    I have now read all of the posts here. I am convinced the majority of you are so heavily under the influence of satan you can't see it. Read your posts again. You're being tricked and polluted and brainwashed by a satanic popular culture and it has influenced your faith lives.

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  54. AT ANONYMOUS 9:13 PM

    Since you under presumably under angelic influence, why don't you come out from behind those clouds and tell us who you are?

    ROFLM Arse off. How shall we be saved? LOL.

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  55. Mercury, you know I agree with everything you said. Humidity or not.

    The Novus Ordo done all in Latin that I went to at St. John Cantius in Chicago is the biggest joke of a mass I have ever attended. Just as someone here described about the TLM they went to: People and kids walking around everywhere, up and down the aisles, doing anything they felt like. And I realized later that I shouldn't have been surprised. When you keep saying that the priest is offering the mass FOR you, on your behalf, and all you need to do is sit there and let it happen and tell yourself that you're "assisting" with the mass, well then who cares what you do while there?

    And sorry, I don't know how wearing a chapel veil is akin to making reparations for anything.

    Finally, I wish people would quit their bitching about kids at mass. My God, have you ever had children? Fine, I'll stop going to mass with my family, period, on your recommendation. Oh wait, then I'm a "bad" Catholic anyway. Can't win, can I? So just STFU.

    I think thiis thread is turning into the very thing Terry was complaining about in the first place.

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  56. Anonymous 9:13 - I am convinced you are so filled with self-righteous hatred that you have no idea what you are talking about. Must be nice to have all the answers and be able to judge the souls of others.

    You don't even seem like a Christian.

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  57. Anonymous9:42 PM

    Charolette, dearest, you have over simplified the concept of the Latin mass, as you do pretty much every other concept on your b-logs. I think you have a lot of anger issues that need to be dealt with and you need to watch your language.

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  58. Says the guy who thins God is going to kill all of us "Novus Ordos" and who thinks he found the golden ticket in his defection from Rome ...

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  59. Anonymous9:48 PM

    Different anonymous. Never posted here before. I just catalog all of Char's little missives.

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  60. Well, that's kind of petty, isn't it? How does that help anyone, especially her? Or you - what's it say about your spiritual life?

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  61. Anonymous,
    I don't really care what you think. And I really don't care if my concept of the Latin mass is right or wrong, given the fact that if the kind of people I encounter on the internet are the kinds of people who attend it, they can have it!

    But just for hoots, are you saying the priest isn't offering the mass on our behalf and that in praying in silence at the Latin mass, one isn't "assisting" at the mass? Last time I checked, that was one of the "big attractions" to it all.

    As to my language, if Terry tells me to tone it down, fine, I will. It's his blog. Until then, I think that a bunch of high-brow cry babies bitching about kids at mass is about the most un-Catholic thing ever. It's totally offensive to those of us with kids, especially since even if you work hard on your children behaving at mass, there is rarely 100% compliance most of the time.

    The ultimate point being: They'll bitch if you don't bring them and they'll bitch if you don't.

    P.S. PLEASE don't read my blog (singular) anymore. Seriously, whoever you are.

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  62. *Our pastor loves children and KNOWS that it is near impossible for a child to be silent for an hour.*

    Actually, there are parents who properly discipline their children. I witness this week five children who uttered not a peep throughout the Mass. I went our of my way to tell this Father the same. Your claim that children cannot be silent for an hour is erroneous. Someone has misled you. Your statement implies that because I prefer silence to loud mouthed and misbehaved children, that I do not like children. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    *Our children are not crazy but they are CHILDREN and at least they are WELCOMED by our pastor!*

    Again, the mistaken assumption implicitly stated in your observation is that I would not welcome children at Mass. You are wrong. I welcome children who have been properly disciplined by their parents. A parent's failure to discipline their children should not needlessly become my cross for bearing. Parents need to be mindful of someone other than themselves.


    I was quiet as a child. My parents made certain I was quiet. In fact, I went to Mass on a daily basis in the fifth and sixth grades. I never talked or misbehaved at Mass. I was there to worship God because I loved him.

    *I am positive Jesus loves having kids at Mass even if they distract you a bit! I will echo what others have said...try the 7AM Mass if kids are too much*!

    I think it is safe to say that your fellow parishoners do not mind simple,minor distractions. I don't. Disruptive, loud and sacrilegeous behavior is something I would venture to say neither God, the angels or His Saints relish. I should not be accomodating negligent parenting by attending Mass at 6:00 or 7:00 AM.

    *And I must say, no wonder families are leaving our Church with people such as yourselves glaring at them and giving rude comments when they are TRYING to raise their children in the faith!*

    This is not the reason that people are leaving the Church. Raise your children in the faith. Don't bring boorish ill behaved children to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Doctrinal error led to boorish and secular behavior at Mass which has led to the mass exodus.

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  63. So, Maria - don't bring children to mass?

    Well, we'll see how that plays out on the list of mortal sins - missing mass - as well as not bringing your children up in the faith.

    Lovely.

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  64. Again, I would imagine that throughout most of history, the congregation were a noisy lot. I doesn't mean it's right, I'm just saying there's probably always been whiny kids at Mass.

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  65. Correction: They'll bitch if you bring them and bitch if you don't.

    Humidity

    Mercury: Seriously, cataloging the things I say? What is this, the Catholic FBI? And you're right, what does that say about them spiritually? Very scary.

    http://youtu.be/7YvAYIJSSZY

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  66. think that a bunch of high-brow cry babies bitching about kids at mass is about the most un-Catholic thing ever.

    Charlotte; It is a spiritual work of mercy. It is decidely Catholic to state, in plain language, things which are a detriment to worship. I am not high brow, Charlotte. I am actually a social worker who is, by nature, remarkably tolerant of aberrant behavior. It is my job to put up with madness. I just don't want to have to be on the job, at Mass. I just want an hour in the day when I can worship my God in silence. Truly, I don't think that this is asking for too much. I really dont.
    We simply cannot worship God when we cannot even hear the Mass... Peace.

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  67. Me, too, Maria. In fact, I despise going to mass for the very same reason. People can joke about ADD - I have it. I'm distracted in the front row, for crying out loud.

    However, unless you can get a private mass said for yourself each week, you're stuck with - horror! gasp! - other human beings!

    "Here comes everybody."

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  68. Charlotte: Bring your children to Mass if they are capable of behaving at Mass and assisting at Mass. If all they can do is cry and disrupt the Mass, then no, they should be home in their crib. Parents should take turns. It is what my parents did. One stayed home w/ the babies, while the other took the other kids to Mass. This of course involves sacrifice.

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  69. You know, Anonymous, I comment on some blogs with different user names and emails.

    Guess I'll have to start doing that here, too, huh? I mean, what are you doing, going through my blog list, looking to see if I comment on about a hundred or so different blog posts every day?

    What does "catalog" mean? Are you turning in a list of my usually offensive and uncharitable comments to my local priest? I've got news for you - he already knows what a massively big mouth I have.

    Besides, I thought Terry didn't allow "Anonymous" commenters.

    word verification: glogners

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  70. Charlotte--I think James Joyce meant we take all comers, yes, maybe this did not mean 6 month old infants :)

    I am sorry you have ADD. It is very difficuly. You are right though I am stuck w/ other human beings. I would appreciate it if human beings could try to be more considerate of each others...I may have to join a convent;)

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  71. Charlotte--Pay no mind to anyone cataloging anything.
    Signed,
    A fellow big mouth :)

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  72. Maria,

    WHERE do you think children learn to behave at mass?

    At mass!

    It's not a separate instruction and then the big day comes when you show up for the first time and do it right.

    Cribs? We're not talking about babies here, or are we?

    You're gonna tell everyone to have these massively large families and then not bring those families to mass, and then call it a sacrifice?

    There is NO WAY I would ever follow your recommendation of taking turns going to mass. I can barely get us out the door as it is.

    The mass isn't all about YOU. I don't think I've been to a mass in say, well, my whole life where I haven't been distracted by something, whether kids or crappy music or whatever.

    "Valley of tears."

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  73. Maria,
    Thanks for that, anyway. :)

    I don't care what some Anonymous person thinks about me (or maybe a not-so-anonymous person), but someone threatening me with "cataloging" is creepy and a bit out of line.

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  74. You know, what's an interesting question is why do we go to Mass communally and sit in pews with other people?

    It seems like a better idea would be to have individual boxes with no chance of distraction.

    I'm not saying distractions are a good thing, but it seems like there must be some point to the act that we are there with others, right?

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  75. Anonymous10:30 PM

    Charlotte, No those aren't "the biggest attractions" to it. Must be great living in Proledom.

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  76. Anonymous10:30 PM

    Teaching kids to behave at Mass begins at home.

    Saying the family rosary, teaching the faith, family dinners etc. This instills in children that there are times and places to be quiet and well behaved. It carries over to Mass.

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  77. I'm getting sick of these anonymous pot shot commenters. How cowardly can you be? Especially this one who seems to know Charlotte and have a vendetta against her. That's seriously one of the pettiest things I've seen in a while.

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  78. Mass is more than being quiet and well-behaved. At least on the Novos Ordo side of life, it is participatory.

    You all might not like that it's participatory, but it's true. I cannot teach the participatory part of mass from home. And I'm not gonna wait to do so until my child is perfectly quiet and well-behaved, because, well, I might have to wait until after confirmation. Ever go to a school mass? Ever watch the kids about to make their first communion? For that matter, ever visit reality?

    And as far as the things you list here from the "good" Catholic playbook: family rosaries and family dinners, etc., well, there you have it in a nutshell: More folks trying to tell you how to be a "good" Catholic. Which is something I loathe and abhor.

    What works for you - and what you want - might not work for me or be what I want. This does not make me a "bad" Catholic doing it wrong.

    Cliche as it is, Jesus had alot to say about children. Funny, he never mentioned anything about kids (or adults) being on their best behavior at church. In fact, he spoke to "great crowds" very often. I'm sure they were all so very quiet and reverent and all - especially the kids.

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  79. Charolotte:

    You are right. Children do not automatically know how to behave at Mass; however, children learn to behave, first, at home. From what I am witnessing at Mass, it would appear that parents are not encountering much success. Why should we be surprised? Most parents work two jobs. It is difficult, if not impossible, to raise properly behaved children when no one is home raising them.

    No the Mass isn't all about me. It is all about HIM, or should be. When ill behaved children become center stage, we then lose sight of HIM. And, that is the point. Again, I am not concerned about "distractions".

    *You're gonna tell everyone to have these massively large families and then not bring those families to mass, and then call it a sacrifice?*

    It is interesting that you say this as this is precisely the impression that I get from young parents. WE HAVE CHILDREN AND BECAUSE WE HAVE THEM, OUR CHILDREN CAN BEHAVE IN WHATEVER MANNER WE WISH BECAUSE AFTER ALL, UNLIKE MOST PEOPLE, WE BOTHERED TO HAVE THEM. I spoke to a woman at the National Shrine whose children, four of them, were literally running and yelling, before Mass. I asked her if she would mind having them play outside the chapel. She stred at me and then smirked at me and said in an evil tone: "children are a gift from God". This is the sort of in -your- face entitlement I am have been trying to describe, though not well up until this point. This exchange captures the problem. It is a sense of grotesque entitlement and disregard for others.

    All love is sacrificial. Cetainly parental love must by definition be almost nothing but sacrificial. No one said parenting was easy. It is hard. When children are improperly disciplined our we suffer at Mass, yes, but more importanty we suffer as a society. Badly behaved children have a way of growing up to be badly behaved adults...

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  80. Mercury,
    Whoever anonymous is - not the first person to have a vendetta against me.

    I've got people who hate me so much, they've commented on my blog that they, and I quote, "hope my son grows up to be a homo."

    Pretty much, if you criticize trads - which I did for a long time on my blog, but now only do once in awhile - you've sealed it for yourself. It doesn't matter if you make constructive criticisms or highlight their uncharitableness, because if you criticize them in any form or in any tone, you are criticizing the "holy sacrifice of the mass." Because, you know, being a trad is akin to being a knight-of-the-holy-protection-of-the-superior-and-righteous-TLM or something.

    But I have anger issues. They can say the most sick and twisted things about the Novus Ordo and neo-Caths/neo-cons (their pretty little label), but they're all super-balanced and exuding peace while they're doing it. Yeah, right.

    Or, they can get all in my face about what a f-up I am because I actually tell it like it is about myself on my blog - warts and all, inconsistencies and all - but the fact they they're in these commboxes complaining and arguing all the time themselves somehow equates to a pious, holy existence.

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  81. Mass is more than being quiet and well-behaved. At least on the Novos Ordo side of life, it is participatory.

    Right you are, Charlotte!
    Unless there is silence there can be no reverence, no true worship
    All Mass is participatory; however, we cannot assist at Mass if we cannot hear the Mass.

    *Teaching kids to behave at Mass begins at home.

    Saying the family rosary, teaching the faith, family dinners etc. This instills in children that there are times and places to be quiet and well behaved. It carries over to Mass*

    Anonymous: You are absolutely right. Sorry, Charlotte. I wonder how many families even eat together anymore. Do you have family dinners, Charolotte?

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  82. Well- behaved children--and I'm talking about 2-3 years old and above--are important in many situations, not just Mass. As the commentor said--it begins at home. Speaking with "inside" voice, sitting quietly in chair, proper use of eating utensils, letting adults talk without whining about "being Bored", etc. Carries over to Mass, to eating out in restaurants, behavior in movie theatres, etc.

    One of the most horrible things I have ever witnessed was after a long cold day of hunting my date and I stopped by a local diner to get a hot bowl of soup. Our food arrived, just as the hostess seated a loud ramunctious family in the booth behind us--irritating as we had specifically requested NOT to be seated near families--too cold and tired to put up with nonsence. A young girl about four saw that we had gotten our food, and proceeded to get up out of her seat and sit next to my date and eat his french fries..the parents didn't seem to care or even notice their daughter missing until I had to walk over to their booth and request them to retreive their daughter....they didn't even offer to pay for my date's meal. The waitress did bring him a new plate once she noticed what had happened. I'm really surprised my date didn't blow his stack.

    Babies will squeel a bit--that will happen. MAJOR crying session--remove them quickly. Toddlers will meltdown--please remove them quickly. Older children should know how to sit quietly with maybe a small toy or a picture book. No punching, kicking (especially my pew), whining, jumping up and down, etc. Especially school age kids. And leave the Cheerios and gummy bears at home. Not too much to ask.

    Sara

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  83. Charlotte; These are evil distinctions: Trad,Liberal, Conservative. This is a secular nomenclature that should have NO place in our Church. We are Roman Catholic. We are not "trads" or "conservatives" or "liberals". This tension is more properly understood as faithful or unfaithful. We are not cult members or politicians. We are Christians who should be distinguished by our love for one another but because our Church has been so torn apart by error, this is where we have ended up. We have to remind each others who we are: we are Roman Catholics. Period.

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  84. Maria, you said "all Mass is participatory; however, we cannot assist at Mass if we cannot hear the Mass."

    Someone might ask, then how do we assist at an EF Mass when we can't hear what the priest is praying?

    Also, is there 'no reverence, no true worship' when the rosary is prayed aloud during Adoration or when a parish prays the Stations aloud together?

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  85. Maria, in all fairness, it's the people who consciously adhere to their little subculture that make the distinction. So many people CALL themselves traditionalists, with the implication of course that the "Novus Ordos" don't care about tradition or Tradition.

    And you'd think they of all people would know that "Novi Ordines" is the proper Latin plural ...

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  86. Charlotte--I don't hate you:)

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  87. Maria,
    What if your child acts up at mass precisely because he KNOWS you want him to behave there? This happens more often that you would imagine. You impress upon the child so firmly the need to behave that they just can't take the pressure.

    Anyway, Maria, do you HAVE kids?

    I don't work - I stay home - and I'm telling you, raising a kid is no picnic these days in the behavior department. You act as if it's nothing - you act as if everyone in the past knew how to do it and it worked. That, my friend, is disingenuous. It is looking at the past with rose colored glasses. It might just be that back then the kids were whipped with a belt the last time they acted up at mass and now they look like some prim and proper, well-behaved family.

    For what it's worth - I know homeschooling families with kids who are exemplary in the behavior department at mass, but later, back at their homes, they are out-of-control, rotten behaved jerks. I'm not elevating them to some perfect status because they got mass right. In fact, that's a road to bogus piety, and that is something I also loath and despise.

    Society suffers because kids are running around in the shrine? Not buying that one, either.

    Listen, I've read a whole book abou children and their behavior at mass. Honest, I have. We now sit up as far as possible - usually in the front pew, if we can- in order to foster an interest for our child at mass, as well as to instill a sense of him being watched/seen, so that he will understand that others can see his behavior. But I am still not asking a four-year-old to be something he isn't. As an adult, you can HIDE your distraction or boredom. A little kid can't.

    And I am not asking myself to be something I'm not, either. Some days I'm just tired. Some days I've had it with saying "no" and constantly disciplining. And some days like that turn out to be SUNDAY. Oh well.

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  88. Well said, Sara.

    SCC--This was the first Latin Mass I have attended since grade school. My remarks pertain to this Mass today (Latin) and all the other NO Masses I attend.

    *Someone might ask, then how do we assist at an EF Mass when we can't hear what the priest is praying?*
    Roman Missal. And....


    You are missing the bigger picture and the larger points I am trying to make. Point: boorish behavior interferes w/ our ability to worship of any kind.

    A rosary said aloud cannot, by definition, require silence. I am a little confused. Interior silence and recollection cannot be had in the midst of chaos wether it be the Mass, the rosary or adoration.

    Mercury--See my post above. I think that these distincttions are evil and reflective of damaging divisions which do not serve Christ or his Church.

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  89. 3 Puddytats,

    That is one screwed up story. Asking to purposely be seated away from families?

    Unbelievable. Then go to a 4-star restaurant. If you can ask to be seated away from children/families, can I just ask you to seat yourself out of the restaurant? Because, you know, families happen. You know, like the one YOU came from.

    Terry just did a post this week about a woman who offered her observations about dating trad "traditional Catholic" guys, and the woman said, "....some of these men seemed to have self-consciously adopted certain styles, tastes, hobbies, and mannerisms associated with other times and places than twenty-first-century New York, identifying themselves more with, say, Europe before World War I, or fin-de-siècle Paris, or the New York of the Gilded Age."

    And there is the problem, folks. It's high-brown personal preference for style and an intellectually quiet atmosphere of self-absorption.

    Like the trad church here in Milwaukee where they have a literal, roped off section in the back with a big sign that says "Seating for babies and small children." That was the first and last time I'll ever go there.

    Anyone who knows me knows that I do NOT agree with, believe, or espouse all the modern garbage that comes along with raising kids these days. I am not a "I'm your friend" kind of parent. Not even close.

    Still, I am going to take offense when people act like kids and families are scum. And I am going to seriously question the motives of those who think total silence and perfect behavior from kids is attainable 100% of the time.

    This from the person who never wanted kids my entire life - at least until I fell in love. I used to be you, 3 Puddytats. I really was. But then I had a baby.

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  90. I was not able to have children, Charlotte. I worked for years as a theapist w/ emotionally disturbed children and I got them to behave, lol! I don't act as if it is nothing. I said it is hard. Sacrificial love is hard. It is supposed to be hard. Charlotte, I am telling you, I am old enough to remember when Church and libraries were quiet places. When we cannot go into a Church and expect to find peace, trust me, Charlotte, we suffer. I am not saying you are not trying very hard to be a good parent,Charlotte. You did not answer my question. Do you have family dinners? Do your friends? I am curious, truly.

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  91. I was not able to have children, Charlotte. I worked for years as a theapist w/ emotionally disturbed children and I got them to behave, lol! I don't act as if it is nothing. I said it is hard. Sacrificial love is hard. It is supposed to be hard. Charlotte, I am telling you, I am old enough to remember when Church and libraries were quiet places. When we cannot go into a Church and expect to find peace, trust me, Charlotte, we suffer. I am not saying you are not trying very hard to be a good parent,Charlotte. You did not answer my question. Do you have family dinners? Do your friends? I am curious, truly.

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  92. Charlotte; Has I said that families and children are scrum?Dont think so. It is disingenuous to make that argument.

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  93. Maria,
    Whether or not those distinctions are helpful to the Church, they exist.

    In my personal life, and here on the internet, I have had to battle with people who hold tight and fast to these distinctions - many wanting to lord the superiority of those distinctions over me. I have been made to feel like absolute crap by some of these people - again, some in my acutal offline life.

    So until those distinctions fade away, I have to discuss these issues according to reality.

    And by the way, you mentioned "errors" in the Church. You say that like we'd all agree as to that those errors might be. I have a feeling you and I would agree on many of them. But when you use "errors," are you aware that such language automatically places you within defined boundaries of the very distinctions you say are damaging?

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  94. Charlotte: The behavior that Sara described in that child is beyond barbaric. At a bare minimum, the parents should have been attentive. They were obviously oblibious to the behavior of the child. This problem is the same problem I have witnessed at Mass. Total obliviousness of the parent.

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  95. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  96. I spend a few hours visiting with family, praying Compline, the Rosary and Matins and this thread turned into a Twilight Zone episode. Do-do-do-do-do-do-do....

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  97. Maria - I agree that such divisions are evil. My point was just that some people divide themselves and wear it as a badge of honor. This becomes very serious when its marked by willful disobedience and distrust of the magisterium or any moral / spritual guidance from orthodox 20th century leaders (I've heard of some people calling Fr. Hardon a liberal!)

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  98. Woah-this thread is a MESS! Gonna go sing Faith of our Fathers and go to sleep. Night all!

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  99. Welcome back, Clark!

    Charlotte and Maria - two of my favorite Abbey Roads combox people, duking it out :)

    For what it's worth, the behavior of the kid in that story is appalling, and it's not the kid's fault.

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  100. Charlotte, I see you mention the "trad" parish in Milwaukee. I assume you mean St. Stan's. Have you ever been to St. Anthony's down the street? It has a very reverent NO but is also half filled with home school families that of course strive to instill discipline in their kids but also sometimes don't always succeed perfectly. People take out their extremely noisy kids and nobody thinks less of them for it. If you've never been, I'd suggest it. It balances reverence, charity and family-friendliness.

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  101. Charolotte: These distinctions are wrong. They are evil.

    There are certain truths that are not open to debate. The eternal truths do not change, Charlotte. I care not one iota where my statement "place me". I only care about loving and serving my God.

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  102. You didn't say it, Maria. 3Puddytats implied it with her story.

    Do we have "family dinners? Well, if you mean everyone sitting in the living room with a plate of food together at the same time? Sure.

    If you mean everyone (everyone is just me-42, my husband-in his mid 50's, and one small child, by the way) sitting together at a table, eating? Nope. That would require a table being cleared off.

    It would also require my making dinner, which doesn't happen all the time.

    See, when you ask that, I know where you're going. And in a perfect Leave It to Beaver World, that's great. But see, then I have to admit that the table's not cleared off and that sometimes I don't really get into making dinner at all, and there opens the door for judgement by all the "good" people who have their act together, right?

    Oh! She doesn't have a traditional family meal every night! Bad! Bad! Bad! This is why her kid's misbehaved! If they did so, they would be training their child how to eat properly at the table, which AUTOMATICALLY transfers over to mass.

    Really? Automatically?

    It's all being judgemental. I know families (homeschool, again) where meal time is a VERY loud, racous affair and they like it that way. Not a thing about it to lend itself to mass.

    Which is the ultimate reason that the pronoucements of gross disdain for children at mass are problematic. You don't know the reasons. You don't know the situation. You assume people have never heard of manners. You assume people don't care. You assume everyone has the same standards as you. You assume that everyone has the same understanding.

    And you'd be wrong, I think, most of the time.

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  103. Maria,
    I went back up top to read your first comment. In it you said, "...they are all self-indulgent narcissists who are so wrapped up in themselves that they don't even have enough awareness of other people to be ashamed of them selves". I tend to agree with that description applied to those parents who arrive at a destination and then seem oblivious to how their children behave.

    At the same time, however, I can see how Charlotte and the other mothers could take that same description and apply it to us.

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  104. Mercury--Like I said, we are not cult members. We are not moonies. We are Roman Catholics and we submit ourselves to one Vicar of Christ. That said, more and more, it seems that the Roman Catholic Church is ever veering toward schism.

    PS Hardon was subversive, wasn't he, lol???

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  105. Maria,

    Racism is wrong, but it still exists.

    Until the trads stop bashing well-meaning Catholics who are conservative (but not conservative enough, obviously), and who are trying to grow in holiness (but aren't holy enough, obviously), I'm not gonna stop speaking up when I hear them doing so. I can pretend all I want that these distinctions don't exist, but that would be putting on blinders.

    And there your comments about "some truths are eternal and never change," that is so condescending to me!!!!!

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  106. Anonymous11:51 PM

    This is all the Novus Ordo Church has to offer. You lost your Divine Authority and now you reek of bedlam.

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  107. NW Thomas,

    NW Thomas,
    Yeah, I've been to St. Anthony's a number of times. Have lots of friends who attend there. Did the Corpus Christi procession there a few weeks ago, actually.

    That place is a mixed bag. Don't feel comfortable there at all. However, I will consider my son, when he is old enough, getting his first communion catechism there - alongside what he learns in Catholic school - just to make sure he is properly catechised.

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  108. Charlotte: Settle down,girl. I wasn't asking for the purposes of casting stones. Truly. Just curious. When I was growing up we sat down every night, my parents, my four brothers and sisters and I, by candle light, and we discussed every thing under the sun.
    My father was a southener...We were expected to communicate w/ one another. I do think that this is, in part, how we become socialized. I also think that your super ego is over-developed. You need to relax and not be so hard on yourself. Stop assuming every one is out to get you, girl! Assume good will :)

    Thanks, SCC.

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  109. Anonymous11:55 PM

    I sure hope Charlotte doesn't use this type of language around her son.

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  110. Anonymous - you have no Magisterium, no Holy Father. Good luck with that.

    Haven't there been some other groups in the past who have found themselves in a similar situation? ...

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  111. What is with the anonymous jerks on this thread tonight?

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  112. And there your comments about "some truths are eternal and never change," that is so condescending to me!!!!!

    Well, then I guess Christ was condescening. He instituted the Sacraments. The Holy Eucharist is the real presence. There is original sin. We must confess our sins. Christ did not mean these things as a personal affront, ROFL.

    Charlotte--Why not concentrate on how you can love God then you can let go of the "batle"...

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  113. Well, Terry, this one went officially over the 100-comment mark, and on it's own! I ask your forgiveness for whatever I did wrong. I have been in a VERY bad mood today, all day, and it has been directly related to Catholicism. So when I returned to this discussion tonight, I sort of let it get the best of me.

    I'm outta here. Would love to argue about why families are scum not worthy to be seated next to at a restaurant (and yes, the french fries story is bad, but get over it, people - how about not letting the kid eat the second french fry, thus eliminating the need to think you're entitled to compensation for a whole plate of them?) AND how children are destroying society when they're too loud at mass (destroying society!) AND my secret admirer who is tracking all of my comments for use as blackmail against me AND those who want to believe that trads really do consider themselves fellow Catholics to their non-trad counterparts, but.....I have to get some sleep.

    I rarely get this active in Terry's commboxes, so, well, that was different, now wasn't it?

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  114. I think Maria's point about the groups was that any group that considers itself apart is acting in an evil way. I think she'd agree that many "trads" do not consider the rest of us fellow Catholics, which is evil.

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  115. Mercury,
    The problem is that Terry isn't home to toss the anonymous comments off. Sometimes he does, sometimes he leaves them because there is legit reason for a person to be anonymous. But in this case, I think he'd toss the guy if he knew about it.

    Anonymous, yes, I have talked this way in front of my son a few times. Oh my gosh! Could it be that I'm a sinner?!?!?!?!??! I have nothing to hide.

    Maria, you don't know how badly I and others have been hurt by trads. No idea. So when you tell me to calm down, OK, fine, but still, you don't know. Many of them are absolute poison and they have made me question my desire to stay Catholic at times. I remain because I believe the Eucharist is real, but outside of that, well, I just don't know anymore. Doesn't help when "traditionalists" in this commbox argue against families and children.

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  116. I've found (going to Notre Dame) almost every single "type" of Catholic. Believe me, there are as many "types" as there are Catholics, and someone will always feel uncomfortable at some Mass or another. I sing at the main Sunday Mass and I know some people who would call it verging on heretical and some who would call is uselessly old-fashioned. There are all these types of people in the world, all feeling uncomfortable, all judging and I have to admit, I don't like the idea of people sitting on cushions around a small table for Mass, but it happens. I'm sure that a lot of people wouldn't feel comfortable with a Mass said on the hood of a Jeep, but it happened during war, even in the "old days". Some things call for extraordinary circumstances and it's a wild world out there.

    Now there are certainly limits to be drawn. There always are. I would like to always follow Rome. I would like to accept all doctrine etc. Other than that, people are where they are and are not always ready for the "ideal". We all are struggling in this world to get by and it is only through God's grace that we can even be at any Mass. Distractions happen, even boorishness happens, but does that after the fact make it no longer Mass?

    I have been called a "trad" and a "liberal" and a "conservative" and really that's fine, because I believe in God according the the Creed and according to the Scriptures and Tradition of the Church. I've felt like fleeing at Mass sometimes, and then the Consecration, and all heaven breaks loose.

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  117. Ha, I felt like fleeing during the homily today, when the priest turned the Gospel about the leaves and the fishes into some political talk about the debt debates and how he sure hopes Congress and the President can reach an agreement.

    Then it turned to how Jesus just wanted to be alone, but he realized that he had to share his time with others.

    The very, very effeminate voice and mannerisms of the priest completed the stereotype.

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  118. I think Maria's point about the groups was that any group that considers itself apart is acting in an evil way. I think she'd agree that many "trads" do not consider the rest of us fellow Catholics, which is evil.

    Mercury: Exactly right.

    Charlotte: For the second time, I have never said that children and families are scum. I think it unfair to keep insisting that I said this when I didn't. I am not "arguing against families" and I resent the characterization as such, Charlotte. I do. If anything, I am trying to be understanding. I am sorry that you perceive me in this way.

    I am also very sorry that you have been so hurt, Charlotte. These divisions are wounding people and precisely the reason that they are so wrong. You are labeling people "traditionalist", presumably me. I am a Roman Catholic, Charlotte. We are Roman Catholics.I submit myself to the Bishop of Rome. There is just ONE Church, fractured, bleeding, and broken as She is. We suffer with Him...as He suffered...

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  119. Anonymous12:48 AM

    "Anonymous, yes, I have talked this way in front of my son a few times. Oh my gosh! Could it be that I'm a sinner?!?!?!?!??! I have nothing to hide."

    I would hate to have to dial this number(414) 616-6100

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  120. Wisconsin child welfare? Are you serious, anonymous? What is your problem? How can you even be such a jerk to stalk someone and mess with them like that?

    It's not funny, and it's cruel.

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  121. Anonymous12:57 AM

    She needs to realize that she is spiritually abusing her son and herself. She needs to grow up and take responsibility for her actions.

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  122. And who the hell are you? How dare you follow her around anonymously on blogs and take digs at her.

    If you really were concerned about the spiritual well-being of her or her son, you'd go about it differently. What you're doing is just petty an wrong and most certainly sinful.

    You're not concerned about anyone's well-being, apparently not even your own.

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  123. +JMJ+

    I just want to leave Comment #123.

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  124. I just want to re-echo Sharon Gee @7.47:

    "Sit and with outstretched arms embrace each person who has wounded you and tell them that you forgive them. Most importantly forgive yourself. I acknowledge higher love within each of you. I am Sharon Gee be with love today."

    What??????????

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  125. Oh! She doesn't have a traditional family meal every night! Bad! Bad! Bad! This is why her kid's misbehaved! If they did so, they would be training their child how to eat properly at the table, which AUTOMATICALLY transfers over to mass.

    Well, our table is not always cleared off either, Charlotte, but one priest we went to for "guidance" regarding life's woes (kids fell away from Church, etc.) said, and this was his VERY FIRST suggestion. "Have at least a Sunday family dinner." The table can be cleared off the day before (and offered up!) so the whole dinner-thing isn't overwhelming. Anyway, we've tried his suggestion, and it's a very good one. Our son from Chicago will even drive in when there's a "family meal" to be had, and the food doesn't even have to be home cooked, although they really dig it when it is.

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  126. Anonymous9:23 AM

    Maria-
    I feel very sorry for you. It is obvious you have a chip on your shoulder towards families.

    You assume that children that can't sit still for an hour don't have parents doing the hard work of discipline. Oh you are so so wrong! I am a stay at home mom and guess what we say the rosary, read the lives of the saints, pray together, eat dinner together EVERY night! Do my kids sit silently through Mass ? Nope. Guess what? I am okay with that. My six year old does sit silently, but the younger ones don't yet. That is okay. They see the older one doing it and in time they will too. It is ridiculous to expect a two year old to sit for an hour without making a peep. You make it sound like any child that makes any noise at Mass is a boorish misbehaved and undisciplined child. Really you think a child asking mom or dad a question during Mass is sacrilegious? Give me a break. It is so obvious you know NOTHING about children and family life.
    And I do know families that have stopped going to Mass because they encountered such hostility from others (all while having perfectly delightful children that might make a peep once in awhile...it's amazing that God even gave kids vocal chords..isn't it?!?!?)

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  127. I liked Sharon Gee's comment the best. I bet it was Terry using an alias.

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  128. *Do my kids sit silently through Mass ? Nope. Guess what? I am okay with that*

    I couldn't have said it better myself.

    *It is ridiculous to expect a two year old to sit for an hour without making a peep*

    Correct, and precisely why a two year old should not be at Mass.

    *It is so obvious you know NOTHING about children and family life.*

    I have three brothers and one sister. I was in grade shool from 1960-1968. I don't know what to tell you other than that children did not understand the house of God to be their private playground. Parents certainly did not bring screming children to Mass. Sorry. It just. did. not. happen. Oh, and that was Washington DC. The same Washington DC where Churches are now a kind of Denny's chain.

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  129. *I feel very sorry for you. It is obvious you have a chip on your shoulder towards families.*

    I am Irish and I am Catholic. So, this statement is preposterous. I have a chip on my shoulders toward self indulgent, irresponsible parenting that makes going to Mass an endurance test:)

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  130. *It's just the opposite here. The FSSP parish has the most well behaved children I've ever seen. And if one does start to cry (little ones) they are whisked out to the cry room. Of course, the priest has requested that it be that way.*

    The NO parishes are bedlam...

    Adrienne: Entirely absent from this discussion has been the the priests' abdication of his responsiblitites. If parents cannot appreciate the meaning of simple, social decorum, and how people are to behave, and not to behave at Mass, then he has a repsonsibility to make it clearly understood, from the pulpit and in the weekly bulletin. Of course, I have been told that the reason a priest will not assume this responsibility as a Shepard is that he does not want to alientate the case flow.

    For a great article on noise at Mass, see article called :For The Love Of God - Shut Up! Excerpt from same:

    Said the Bishop: As I mentioned to you during that day, I am very concerned about the comportment of the faithful in your parish church prior to the celebration of the Eucharist. I am not blaming anyone. I am not trying to say that anyone is at fault. I am simply saying that the comportment is not compatible with proper preparation for the celebration of Mass. This interferes with the ability of the people to enter into the liturgy and have the kind of active participation that the Second Vatican Council calls for...


    The pastor did what the Bishop asked and things have improved, a bit. We recently got a new young pastor who, not long after his installment, wrote a letter to his new parishioners in the bulletin. I don’t have the full quote here in front of me, but it went something like this. “If the Church is not on fire, you should not be talking.” Amen.

    Read more: www.ncregister.com/blog/for-the-love-of-god-shut-up

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  131. Maria, I think people think you are being more demanding than you really are. You're not saying that if a child makes a peep the parents are terrible parents and deserve to be shunned, you're talking about wild and crazy behavior with no effort by parents or pastor to curb it, correct?

    If someone's 4-year-old suddenly says something loud, usually the parents can shut him up with a stern "shh!", and I don't think anyone's freaking out over something like that. You're talking about jungle gym behavior at Mass.

    For some reason, I think people are getting the impression that you mean kids should not make a single peep or the parents deserve to be treated with scorn. I seriously doubt that's what you mean.

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  132. Maria, I think people think you are being more demanding than you really are. You're not saying that if a child makes a peep the parents are terrible parents and deserve to be shunned, you're talking about wild and crazy behavior with no effort by parents or pastor to curb it, correct?

    CORRECT, MERCURY!

    You're talking about jungle gym behavior at Mass

    YEP.

    I don't thinkg parents should be treated w/ scorn. No. I do think that parents need to be taken to task by the laity, other priests, Bishops and Cardinals. To not do so is to fail in charity for each other. Mercury, the notion that children cannot behave is some new notion of the twenty first century. My Irish Mother certainly did not subscribe to this idea. Nor did other Mothers of her generation. God help these parents if they were to encounter my Mother, any of my friend's Mothers or the nuns that taught me. Someone would not scream abuse and assert their victimization. lol:)
    Mercury, I feel so strongly about this that I am setting up a blog and running into techinical difficulties. I will let you know when it is up and running. I have been saying for a long time that I was going to do this and now I think God is asking me to take it on...

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  133. Whoops. Someone WOULD scream abuse and assert their victimization. lol:)

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  134. Oh, Terry; Look what you did. I gave up reading after the 50th or so comment.

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  135. Terry, this is like a Fr. Z combox. You are apparently becoming an "important Catholic blog". Haha!

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  136. Oh, Terry; Look what you did. I gave up reading after the 50th or so comment.

    And, aren't we glad that you did, lol!

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  137. I always thought Terry was important!

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  138. I initially posted this for Terry, but now I post it for everyone who participated in this thread or just sat and read it with clenched teeth.

    Cheer up everybody:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jk0dBZ1meio

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  139. “If the Church is not on fire, you should not be talking."

    Oooh I like that. The Abbey of Gethsemane has signs posted on the doors as you enter the Church, "Silence Spoken Here." Isn't that great?

    I'm the youngest of eight. My parents did not take us kids to church before the age of 5. I still to this day vividly recall my first time in Church: I was simply in awe, and it wasn't even a fancy cathedral, just your run-of-the-mill suburban parish. Mom went to 7am Mass while Dad stayed home with us kids, and then Dad took the older kids to 11.30 Mass later while Mom watched the rest of us. But once we were old enough to attend (and behave), being there was grand.

    But what's a single parent to do? I say kudos to them that have to bring their underage children and make the best of it (within reason of course). Youngsters will be distracting. But there should not be running & jumping, kicking and eating, loud talking etc. It's just common sense.

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  140. Anonymous3:09 PM

    Clark - I felt more like this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXz03GLVdVg

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  141. Well, I hope everyone's happy, I'm clearing off my dining room table! Ha!

    Maria - I kept telling you that it wasn't you who said the scum/family comment. It was 3Puddytats. I wasn't trying to attribute that to you and I know that you don't think that way. : )

    To Anonymous: By that criteria (swearing in front of my kid?), you'd have to turn in the entire inner city of Milwaukee, and a good meausure of white suburbia for letting their tweens watch inappropriate shows on MTV. As it stands, I'm sure social services will be reeeaaal concerned about my swearing in commboxes of conservative religious blogs around midnight, while my child is tucked safely in bed next to his guardian angel nightliight - in the midst of intellectual debates concerning how best to properly raise children against the tide of cultural rot and secularism. Debates on getting children to behave at mass. You're a creep and a jerk.

    Terry, you need to disable anonymous comments, I think. If you're saying you're not going to accept them, then just don't. (Not telling you what to do, but I gotta tell you, I'm fairly creeped out.)

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  142. Charolotte; So sorry. I misunderstood. I thought that your comments were directed at me and Sara. Now I understand.

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  143. Mercury--You said: I'm the youngest of eight. My parents did not take us kids to church before the age of 5. I still to this day vividly recall my first time in Church: I was simply in awe, and it wasn't even a fancy cathedral, just your run-of-the-mill suburban parish. Mom went to 7am Mass while Dad stayed home with us kids, and then Dad took the older kids to 11.30 Mass later while Mom watched the rest of us. But once we were old enough to attend (and behave), being there was grand.


    AMEN. This should be the playbook for all parents.

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  144. That was doughboy, not me. We were always late for Mass and had to sit in the choir loft.

    But I think we were quiet at least. :)

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  145. Anonymous?, That was good. I had forgotten she did an album with the Pet Shop Boys. See, where do the cool Catholics hide? All I meet are conflicted SSA altar servers who won't talk to me and veiled women who kneel on hard marble and hide behind pillars throughout Mass. Where are you people?


    Charlotte, I read some of what you posted earlier and prayed a Rosary just for you. I don't know "evil trads," other than some SSPX people who have given me a hard time over the years, so I can't completely relate. Are you talking about weird Sedevacantist folks? They aren't "trads," they have gone on their own way and have just a enough truth thrown in to confuse some people they are right. Ignore them. Listen to the Holy Father and stay very close to Our Blessed Mother, she will never leave you astray. Whatever you do, please don't leave the Church because of what some dim wit said or didn't say. We need you and that's come from a "trad" like me.

    -Clark

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  146. I wonder what someone who was considering coming to Mass for the first time, or for the first time in a long time, would think about all of this. Wow.

    Oh, and "anonymous" who is creeping on Charlotte? If you are legitimately stalking on not just being another dumbass on the inter, consider that stalking is a crime. And easily provable in this case, because whether you sign in or not, Terry, and Google, have your IP address. I'd knock it off post-haste.

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  147. *stalking and not just being another dumbass on the internet

    Typing FAIL. :-)

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  148. "I wonder what someone who was considering coming to Mass for the first time, or for the first time in a long time, would think about all of this. Wow."

    I agree people can go too far with their comments, but many of the reactions are what people are really feeling on these issues. Isn't that, in part, what these blogs are about, to hash things out? I sometimes think bloggers want nothing more from their readers than, "Heh...good one. Keep 'em commin'!"

    Terry's topic was, "Heated distractions, distinctions, disintegrations..." and he got it.

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  149. Sorry for the mix up Mercury and Doughboy....

    *All I meet are conflicted SSA altar servers who won't talk to me and veiled women who kneel on hard marble and hide behind pillars throughout Mass. Where are you people?*

    ROFLM arse off~!

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  150. Clarke--at the risk of beating a long dead horse, my iconcern is unrelated to mere "distractions".
    :)

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  151. wow--151 comments..must be a record for this combox :)

    And Clarke..I think I'm a cool Catholic..and I'm not SSA or veiled...I might have jeans or biker leathers on though :)

    While we're stirring up hate and discontent...anyone else having problems with Gmail and their POP server on Outlook??

    Sara

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  152. Anonymous8:49 PM

    This seems to be a running theme with you Terry.

    http://abbey-roads.blogspot.com/2006/04/kids.html

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  153. Seriously, anonymous jerk commenters coming out of the woodwork.

    It's nice that you found a "running theme" by digging through the blog to find a post written over 5 years ago.

    Yeah, running theme. By that logic, "Tron" is a series.

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  154. Anonymous10:17 PM

    It is "days"like this that I love this blog. Me thinks you hit a nerve.

    I will say that I have heard that noise, commotion, and talking during Mass, should hearken us back to the days when Christ preached in the Temple. He too had to deal with loud children, live animals and milling about. His message still got through and it still gets through today. Amen.

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  155. In the UK, where children are also not easily suffered to come unto the Lord, they have early Masses for the one to one worshippers and then a family Mass where er suprise suprise, families can go.

    Like it or lump it, we do not live in the fifties anymore and the culture these days is to be friendly to people. That means smile as you see a new face at Church, they may be going through a living hell and YOUR face is their first encounter with the Living God.

    Reading this, would almost make one imagine an assault course of acceptance to be overcome just to even get to Christ Jesus, his follower's being the assault course!!

    I can't imagine Jesus saying,"Get that kid/homosexual/single parent/women dressed like an adulterer(insert as your prejudice is forming) outta here!"

    Infact the only people He ever threw out were money changers. So piety stall helpers, mind your hearts!

    I do appreciate it is conducive to worship to have pleasant atmospheres but these must start in the heart surely? Families should be welcomed especially, suffered if neccessary although not in a patronizing way. That would put people off. We were all born screaming, even linguistic legacies didn't come out speaking Latin in soft tones.

    I used to try and get five sons to Mass, not always easy, not at all. No help from fellow Catholics, no enquiry even as to if I needed assitance. A very very lonely time, as I recall, amidst many other lonely times.

    'Catholic fellowship', an oxymoron for some.

    I suppose we could start protest praying outside churches that let small children in aswell as those with SSA?

    The list of the unsuitables grows each day.


    Where's Sharon Gee? I need to exude some stress with outstretched arms.

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  156. I love you, Shadowlands. :-)

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  157. I love you too Thom, very much. Your heart shines out to me, on blogger. I mean that, truly. You have been the voice of Christ to me, on dark days. You are never cynical in your spirit, regarding the love of Jesus, for all of us. That is rare and precious.

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  158. Sgadowlands:

    All Masses are "family" Masses in Washington DC and surrounding suburbs.

    *Like it or lump it, we do not live in the fifties anymore*

    Manners and a modicum of civility are never, ever passe, Shadowlands.

    * can't imagine Jesus saying,"Get that kid/homosexual/single parent/women dressed like an adulterer(insert as your prejudice is forming) outta here!"*

    Common sense comes in very handy here. An infant ior a two year old is unable to assist at Mass. Wiser to leave them at home until they can assist at Mass, yes? Jesus over turned the temple as it the temple had been re=purposed for something other than its intende purpose. Should Churches now be Churcke Cheeses?

    *I used to try and get five sons to Mass, not always easy, not at all. No help from fellow Catholics, no enquiry even as to if I needed assitance. A very very lonely time, as I recall, amidst many other lonely times.*

    Are you suggesting that rather that assisting at Mass, I should instead be babysitting?

    *'Catholic fellowship', an oxymoron for some.*

    One of the vicissitudes w/ which Vatican II left us, is an inordinate foucus on "us" when our focus should on Him. We are not at Mass for "fellowship. We are there to worship God. Have at fellowship, after Mass, outside the Church. Not before, during and after Mass, in Church, as is now the custom. Some people like to pray at Church. Rather difficult to do in the midst of "fellowship".

    *The list of the unsuitables grows each day.*

    The list of unsuitale behavior grows, not unsuitable people.

    :)

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  159. Maria,

    This is going to sound really mean, but your constant harping on "assisting" at mass is dated and almost archaic, and, like I've previously asserted, a sure clue that you are a traditional Catholic with traditional Catholic sensibilities.

    NO ONE I know or have encountered, unless they are a trad or SSPX, talks like this. And I personally know some trads in my real life, and even they don't talk like this.

    A 2-year-old can't assist at mass? Who says things like this? So whoever isn't capable of "assisting" is useless and unwanted? My understanding is that just being in the presence of the Eucharist - even if one is in a state of mortal sin - is a grace.

    I hear you when you say we're all Catholic and these factions and divisions hurt the body of Christ. But your language and sensibilities concerning the topic at hand are automatically flushed through with factional concepts.

    In fact, I'd go so far as to state that it's predominantly trads who get their undies in a bundle about kids at mass. The upper-crust, self-absorbed aesthetic preferences of trads always dominate their defenses of Latin language liturgy.

    Again, no one here is arguing for kids being out of control or the inmates running the asylum. But some VERY unkind, uncharitable, and non-human attitudes about famililies with kids have been presented by various people in this discussion.

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  160. Hey Charlotte,

    Did you read what I wrote you above? I was really worried about you.

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  161. *upper-crust, self-absorbed aesthetic preferences of trads*

    Ouch. I am glad you have decided just what kind of Catholic I am :). Like I said, I am just a Roman Catholic as and far as I know there is still just the one true faith...

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  162. Ever notice in life how so many people respond to the one finger wave, but never the five finger wave? I think a lot of people obsessed with blogging are that way too.

    Btw, Sara, I'd have a beer with you anytime. Take me skeet shooting. PS I'm just Clark, no "e"... :-)

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  163. Clark--sounds like a plan :) sorry about the "e"..I hate it when people misspell my name too :)

    Sara

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  164. So the only children that should be brought to church and exercise their right to attend mass, are mute, lame and paralyzed.

    Matthew 18:10
    Matthew 19:14
    3RD Typical Edition GIRM
    Sancrosanctum Concillium 14

    According to Sacrosanctum Concillium and re-iterated in the latest GIRM, EVERY Baptised Catholic has the RIGHT as well as duty to attend mass.

    Does that mean, parents shouldn't settle the child down, no.

    Does that mean the rest of us should just chill, and not blame every distraction on a baby, yes.

    When we get to the point of saying that the kid moving is distracting us from our piety, something is wrong with us.

    We respect life from conception to natural death, except at mass

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  165. After 165 comments I think that it is safe to say that this subject is of concern, wouldn't you? I don't remember ever reading a post of Terry's that generated so much heat. Where there is heat there is indeed often fire :)

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  166. Anonymous10:11 AM

    Hey Maria,

    I'm a DC Catholic too but I don't see children running up and down the aisles. I've visited a lot of parishes around here too. It would be nice to have more reverence but getting in a funk about the lack of it doesn't help. It just makes reverence yearners seem crabby and envious.

    My hunch is that Mercury is right - in the way olden times, Mass was a zoo.

    Vickie

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  167. Nope, actually in the way olden times of the sixties, it wasn't. I was there:)

    I like what this priest had to say:

    He says parishioners are welcome to talk as much as they want after Mass at the post-Mass social hour in the parish's activities building or outside the church, "but I do think there needs to be a sense of respect for the Blessed Sacrament and for people who come early or stay to pray."

    The respect is gone because out Lord is buried in a corner and few there are who believe in, let alone preach, the real presence.
    :)

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  168. Said the priest:

    "Back in the old days, when everything was in Latin, there was a very hushed atmosphere".

    And, indeed there was...

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  169. Returning to Orthodoxy
    What do parishioners really want?

    On June 24th a Chicago priest, Pastor of St thomas Church, sent this letter out to all of his parishioners, concerning reverence of the Holy Eucharist:

    To the parishioners of St. Thomas

    Dear Friends in the Lord,

    I was alarmed by a statistic I heard this weekend. Only 27 percent of Catholics in the United States believe in the Real Presence. The doctrine of the Real Presence is at the very heart of the Catholic faith. The doctrine of the Real Presence is the belief that Jesus is really, physically, present in the form of bread and wine. This idea draws together all the central teachings of Christian faith. It is the Incarnation, the Redemption, the Resurrection, the unity of the Body of Christ, and the promise and foretaste of heaven.

    If we don't believe in the Real Presence, we might as well close the church. In fact, we are facing a generation of young people who are largely lost to the church because we have not given them the precious gift that is at the heart of Catholicism, that is the Real Presence of Jesus. Mass has become simply a drama, a vehicle for whatever agenda is currently popular. The church building is no longer a place of encounter with the Lord but a sort of a social center--not a place of prayer, rather a place of chatter.

    In many churches, including our own, the tabernacle was moved from the center of the church to add emphasis to the Mass and the presence of the Lord in the reception of Holy Communion. The experiment, however, has failed. We have lost the sense of the sacred that formerly was the hallmark of Catholic worship. The behavior of many in the church is outrageous. When Mass is over it is impossible to spend time in prayer. The noise level reaches the pitch that one would expect at a sporting event. The kiss of peace seems like New Year's Eve. Christ is forgotten on the altar.

    You may counter that he is present in the gathering of the Church, and though this is true, it should not detract from the Lord present on the altar. If the Lord is truly recognized in the congregation, it should serve to enhance the sacredness of the moment. This is simply not happening. The sign of peace in most churches has all the sacredness of an Elks convention--no offense to the Elks. We are teaching our children by what we do and the way we are behaving that there is nothing special about that little white round thing, it's just a piece of bread. Usually wedding photographers set up their equipment right in front of the tabernacle and I have to ask them to move. They have no idea what that little box is for.

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  170. PART II

    Worse still, I remember walking into church one afternoon to find some of the men of the parish smoking and drinking beer directly in front of the tabernacle as they worked on some "liturgical" project or other. After Mass on Sunday the church is littered with cigarette butts, gum, wrappers, the refuse of snacks, broken toys brought to entertain unruly children, and all manner of filth.

    Therefore, I have decided to restore the tabernacle to its former place in the middle of the sanctuary and to begin a campaign of re-education as to the sacredness of the meaning of the Real Presence. This means that I will nag and nag until a sense of the sacred is restored. I will be reminding you that a respectful quiet will have to be maintained in church. Food and toys and socializing are welcome elsewhere, but the church is the place for an encounter with the loving God. It will not be a popular policy, but this is unimportant.

    If you object, please tell me why. I will not begin this change until July. Let me know what you think. I can hear one objection already. Where will the priest sit? I will sit where the priest has traditionally sat over on the side of the sanctuary. Here as in many churches the "presider's" chair was placed where the tabernacle had been. I am sick of sitting on the throne that should belong to my lord. The dethronement of the Blessed Sacrament has resulted in the enthronement of the clergy, and I for one am sick of it. The Mass has become priest-centered. The celebrant is everything. I am a sinner saved by grace as you are and not the center of the Eucharist. Let me resume my rightful place before the Lord rather than instead of the Lord. I am ordained to the priesthood of Christ in the order of the presbyter, and as such I do have a special and humbling role. I am elder brother in the Lord and with you I seek to follow Him and to worship.

    Please, please let me return Christ to the center of our life together where he belongs.

    In the Lord,

    Father Rich Simon

    Oh, the parishoners were thrilled.
    :)

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  171. Maria - while not denying that this issue is important, the number of comments doesn't say much about its importance, especially since the commenters were the same 4or 5 people for the most part.

    Besides, you know what often generates more comments than anything? Women in pants. So if we went by number of comments = level of importance, then that's the most important issue in the Church today :)

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  172. The Real Presence

    An elementary understanding of Jesus in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist

    by Lee Ann Schoofs

    Dedicated to
    Fr. John Anthony Hardon, S.J.
    Of Blessed Memory

    Year of the Eucharist
    July 2005

    With the blessing of His Excellency, Most Rev. Raymond L. Burke

    National Director of the Marian Catechist Apostolate

    The Gold of our Silence

    When the three kings came to adore the little Jesus as the new born King, they offered Him gold. It was the best they could give Jesus. As faith-filled Catholics, the best reverence and respect we can give Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament is the gold of our silence. Silence has a drawing quality. It literally draws our heart to the silent Heart of our Eucharistic Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament. That's the whole reason why Jesus is in the tabernacle - not to be ignored but to be adored. Silence before Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament draws us to adore Jesus alone. It helps us realize that Jesus' presence is more important than ours and deserves all our attention. It's just common sense when one realizes that first we owe our respect and reverence to God and not our neighbor. After all, we're only the creatures but He is the Lord. That is why silence should be strictly observed; it is the best reverence and respect we can give Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament. Except for times of formal public prayer we should always remain as quiet as possible before our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament and to help others to do the same by our good example.

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  173. +JMJ+

    I don't know if Maria is listening any longer. She's too busy spamming this and at least one other combox.

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  174. Repost in response to Maria:

    30 years late, but better late than never...

    As a typical product of 1980s American suburbia, I can tell you honestly, I had no idea that Our Lord was really present, body, blood, soul and divinity in the Holy Eucharist until I was 16 years old. Imagine...16! After years of sitting in CCD classes that told us nothing other than God was love. Some SSPX neighbors of ours, shocked that I had never heard of the Transfiguration, handed me a Baltimore Catechism and told me to read it. They would call and make sure I was reading it. Was I reading it? I couldn't put it down. The simple, straightforward, questions and answers to the fundamentals of my faith was what my soul had been crying out for all those years. And once I knew with certainty of Our Lord's presence I couldn't stay away. I began attending daily Mass before school, would rush over to the church after school to spend time before that glorious "little box."

    My pastor, hell bent on locking the doors as soon as the morning Masses were over, practically barred me from the church. We had a few blowouts once he figured out how I was getting into the church "after hours" so to speak. Poor Msgr. D., may he rest in peace, I just wanted to be close to Jesus. Rock concerts? Shopping malls? This was the greatest show on earth and it was happening at my dull suburban parish church down the street! Who knew? So, I am sorry Msgr. D. for breaking and entering, but I just couldn't stay away.

    This letter from the pastor is awesome! I hope it inspires other pastors to seriously get with it! 1970s Catholicism is OVER! It failed. Moving on...

    Thanks for sharing this Maria.

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  175. ENTHENBRIEL "JMJ"

    As indicated above, it is unecessary to speak of me in the third person.I am right here reading your commentary about me in the third person :)

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  176. Clark, thank you. It is a kindness to pray a rosary for me, who surely can benefit from it. And I hope it benefited, you, as well.

    When I say I think about leaving the Church, it's a half-hearted statement. I reverted when I got married 6 years ago (after having got a degree in religious studies, spending time as an evangelical, Anglican, and then a Wisconsin-synod Lutheran.)

    I was on fire for the faith, but instead of letting it develop organically, got caught up with homeschoolers, uber-orthodox, and a handful of trads (normal kind, although some with family connections to SSPX.) Wanting to do the right thing and not be lukewarm, I followed their lead, instead of God's. Much of this is documented (in a not so obvious way) on my blog.

    I am now left confused, because while I can spout orthodoxy and basic Church teaching as easy as the next person, it never took root in my heart, with the exception of a few things, like the Eucharist (which is a belief I never let go since childhood, anyway.)

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  177. By the way,
    Have I been confused that there has been two different Marias in this conversation - and also in another one here that was about homosexuality?

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  178. Sorry. I don't understand.

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  179. Charlotte; Was this addressed to me?

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  180. There is a poster who signs "Maria" below, and then there's our resident Maria who loves Fr. Hardon (as we all should :)).

    The one you have been arguing with I think has been real Maria, as opposed to undersigned Maria.

    Charlotte, I know how you feel. Sometimes I wish I was dumber, and then my overactive mind wouldn't come up with so many dilemmas and scenarios and questions - I could just trust Jesus and trust the Magisterium and that'd be it.

    For me it's simply that there must be a God, and if there is a God, then it must be the Christian God, and if that's so, then the Catholic Church must be the true Church. It's hard to explain, but that's how I see it. It doesn't mean it's easy to accept everything, or that there aren't all kinds of weird and crazy things floating around in the history of the Church and the loves of the Saints.

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  181. I am also confued now but I am the resident Maria who loves Fr. Hardon, that is for sure :) and am also the Maria who has been defending silence in Church and in so doing earning enemires, lol. I don't know about the homosexuality thing or what that means....

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  182. What is an "undersigned Maria" ROFLM arse off?

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  183. What is an "undersigned Maria" ROFLM arse off?

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  184. There's someone who posts anonymously then signs her name as Maria.

    She shares some of your opinions but is much less charitable it seems :)

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  185. I have an anonymous and an undersigned Maria commenting on my latest blog post too, reposting my comments here, there!

    Still, I love a bit of craziness, so they are in the right place(S)

    I thought there was another Maria that stopped by here, aswell as these possible two/three? One with a photo of someone smiling, who looks very much like my friend Sharon, but not Sharon Gee, who I've never met, but another Sharon.

    Curiouser and curiouser........

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  186. For all those who are persuing an inquisition with regard to my name, whose comments are mine and whose are not, lol, just want to let you know that I have had trouble signing into Google on several blog. For some reason I have not had trouble w/ Abbey Roads. I have also been trying to set up a blog of my own and have encountered some difficulties. A sinister plot is not always underway:)

    It is also true that I once saw a post that appeared to have been written by me * it was signed by me but ir was not written by me. That was a first.

    It is also true that I am sure I have fallen short of the glory of God. If I have hurt you, please accept my apologies.

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  187. Maria said:

    "For all those who are persuing an inquisition with regard to my name"

    Hey! We're Catholics, we like our inquisitions. ;)

    you also said:

    "It is also true that I am sure I have fallen short of the glory of God. If I have hurt you, please accept my apologies."

    I would also apologise to any soul (including Maria(s)that I may have hurt on this thread, in fact on blogger in general. I am really looking into stopping blogging, religious wise, as I don't know if I am producing any good fruit, fruit that will last I mean.

    I have prayed a rosary for Terry, re his eye situation. I would encourage others to, aswell.

    At least we can all unite in prayer for our blog owner here.

    God love him and keep him safe.

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  188. Charlotte: Have you read through the Spiritual Exercised of St. Ignatius? St Ignatius changed my life. I owe my faith to him....

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  189. For Catholics everywhere:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zAg1rglAovs

    And yes, I need to stop expressing myself through Youtube videos.

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  190. To all, I apologize for any comments I made that hurt or offended you and ask your forgiveness.

    I should have stopped after my first sentence: "Terry, I've experienced the same thing since I began reading blogs."

    Maybe I should go back to lurking.

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  191. SCC--Not to worry. It is awfully hard being Catholic right now. I am the very worst offender as is easlily observed in my impatience w/ noise, lol!

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  192. Sorry, Clark. I have no audio right now. I deleted my audio input device:) Aren't I smart?

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  193. Shadowlands - don't quit blogging. You mean a lot to those of us who suffer despair and scrupulosity.

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  194. how to beat a dead horse at 195 ;)

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  195. ROFLM Arse off, Doughboy. We are good at it, aren't we. Who else but Cathlics could have this conversation? lol.

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  196. Okay, now we need to push this thing over 200. Terry is as important as Fr. Z now! :)

    I think he blogs because he wants followers - ha!

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  197. Do you think that there are blog stats in Heaven?

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  198. Ok, last one, but this is actually very interesting. Michael Voris unplugged on a Canadian talk show:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EvHtQQ5FdBk&feature=related

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Please comment with charity and avoid ad hominem attacks. I exercise the right to delete comments I find inappropriate. If you use your real name there is a better chance your comment will stay put.