Am I a lukewarm Catholic is the question tonight.
I think the answer is “yes”. I am not in the public square championing the Lord. Yes, I am here on the WEB but in so many different ways, this is private.
Yes, I just wrote, this is private. I am writing to an invisible audience and am maintaining invisibility too. I know there are people reading and I do think of an audience when I write but I am really writing for me. I gain insights about myself in writing. I find out what is bothering me. I find out what I really think. I start a prayer that benefits me. I hear an answer that my mind was shutting out. I feel good that I might, just might be honoring Benedict XVI, yet given my lowliness, I cannot be sure of that. I am not standing up as me in the public square, especially the Catholic public square.
I am so tired tonight of stupid Masses. It took me this long to get it out. And, I am spiritually troubled by the rumor that Piero Marini might be assigned put in charge of the curial department heading Divine Worship. I don’t know if Marini is a good man or a good priest. I just know that I don’t have a good impression of him and his liturgy. I want something more, something is wrong at Mass and I cannot put my finger on it. Part of what is wrong is me. A lot of what is wrong is the lukewarmness of priests saying the Mass.
We have a visiting priest who draws the Mass out too much but he is fervent. I want more of that. I like our parish priest, he is a good man, but his saying of the Mass is automatic. At another parish, the guy makes up the words and never says the right prayers. At least our priest says the prayers. But he is so monotone and quick, the words are lost. Perhaps they aren’t lost in heaven but they are lost. Then there is another parish where the priest allows the too much lay participation – a nun reading the Gospel, etc. I want more.
Benedict showed the way. I miss his saying of the Mass. I missed the solemnity of it. I miss his intensity during the consecration. Francis has a wonderful intensity at the consecration but that’s about it. I want more.
What I would really like is the modern mass said ad orientem and receoving communion at the altar rail either by hand or tongue. I want the variety of music choices to remain but I want seriousness, offering, humbling. I want them to read the new translation in a way we can hear the beauty of the words, the meaning of the prayers. When you find someone who does this, Mass is really more meaningful. I want!!!!!
I pray for this, maybe not my solution, but the experience I want. I think Benedict wanted this for all of us – to really have an encounter and to remember what has and is happening at Mass. So, I’m praying for my wants tonight hoping that it is in line with what Benedict would pray for and I am praying that when Benedict says mass in private his prayers are heard in heaven and that his masses are of benefit to us all. Mass is the summit of our life as Catholics. I don’t know how or why other Christians don’t get this.
End of a rant in a way but there it is, my advocacy in the public square with billions of people but which will influence no one: Except maybe the Lord if it is His will.
Maybe I’m not lukewarm but still – I’m not writing the Bishop or sending an e-mail to the Pope.