Bongo Drum Mass

23 12 2007

Not in Japan that I know of!  No I experienced this remnant of Life Teen while visiting my parents.  Life Teen has disbanded in their parish but the band has not and gets a slot at the noon mass.  The church has a large and wonderful pipe organ that is played at a couple of the other weekend masses, however, one weekend the only mass I could attend  was the noon mass I dubbed the hippie mass.

The band has singers, guitars, and for percussion on that particular Sunday bongo drums.  After complaining to my Mom she said the drummer usually has his whole drum kit up there!  I grimaced.  The songs they played were better suited for a Protestant worship service in a hall without the Body Blood Soul and Divinity of Jesus present, and that is where one of my complaints lies.

The music is not appropriate for the setting.  It was not transcendent, it doesn’t really lift the mind to heaven for one hour, it is an insult to two thousand years of Catholic history and culture, and an insult to the intelligence of its target audience.

One excuse that is given to have this kind of music is that it attracts young people to church and helps to keep them attending.  I refute that by saying the Eucharist is why they should be going and what will keep them going.  We are the only religion, that I am aware of, where we eat our God, and such an awesome thing deserves better music than that.

I also find the band to be insulting to the intelligence of its target audience because it presumes the Eucharist is not enough, that people need something more, that basic Catholic doctrine and tradition is not enough, too hard or too old to understand.

Comparing the atmosphere of a mass where the pipe organ was played, and where the band played I would say there is more reverence & less talking during mass than at the band mass.  Before, during, and after the band mass I noticed an increase in volume of the tone of voice people spoke in.  After the band mass people lingered in  the main church in the presence of the Tabernacle talking loudly with friends and family.

All of this combines to make young people less interested in mass and lees likely to go since they are less likely to see anything special about the mass at all.  How can Go be truly present there if people talk, act, and sing like He is not? 


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