November 15, 2007

Narcissism



A Cranky Cathy post!

Dinner Theater Mass:

Father Wayne Newton greets the fans at HIS show: “Hey, how ya all doin’? Who’s in town for the big game? Stand up and be recognized! Anyone here from Ohio? Give ‘em love! Go Buckeyes! For my next musical number (This one is for you, sweetie, in the front row-love ya), I’m going to start us off with “One Bread, One Body” Hey, join in if ya know it!”

Greeting the mafia high rollers in the front row at the Sands Mass:

Father Frank Sinatra runs all over the church (and turns his back on the consecrated Host sitting there alone in the Sanctuary) during the Sign of Peace gladhanding the rich Pharisees in the front row. Father has “ads” in the local Catholic paper. He’s at a different casino now but apparently he’s enough of a celebrity around here (or he thinks he is) that the ad makes a point of mentioning his former gig-just so we know who he is and where he‘s taken his act now in case we want to stop by. No word on if he’s “held over” for a 2nd blockbuster year or not.

The "I Will Not Be Ignored" Mass:

As soon as Ms. Glenn Close arrives for Mass she has to start talking to everyone around her. Like those annoying people at the theater who talk during ½ the show or leave their cell phones on. Trying to pray? Forget it. She wants to talk to you about the bake sale-RIGHT NOW! Not during coffee hour AFTER Mass-NOW!

The Musicians Come Marching In Mass:

As soon as Phillip Glass hears the least amount of SILENCE SO WE CAN PRAY IN PEACE!!!! he feels it is necessary to doodle around on the piano, organ, guitar, kazoo, Brazilian rainstick, whatever. Or he inserts another (previously unplanned) song into the “program” to remind us that he's still there.

2-4 Reasons Why All Gift Bearers and Ushers Should be Old White Men Mass:

Does no one know how to simply WALK anymore? Is there some muscular affliction around that causes people walking up an aisle to feel like they must sashay and lift the basket with the money up over their head-all the while attired in their worst slob outfit? Do priests receive some kind of training on jumpshooting in order to grab the gifts from the ushers uplifted hands that I don't know about? (I should ask Father Baer how he's training the seminarians for this) I know people have trouble letting go of the Y.M.C.A move. Really, it's SO over and The Village People are all gay.

Is the longing for silence, one of the reasons Adoration is so huge around here? Really, some days I think the Adoration Chapel is the only quiet and reverant Catholic place in town. I know I do my best praying there. I, certainly, don’t get a lot of prayer in during the biggest prayer of all-or what should be.

What do all of these scenerios illustrate in common? I think they illustrate how pervasive narcissism is today. All of these people have one thing in common: It’s all about: ME!. Look at: ME! Notice: ME! Don’t look at Him who died for many so that sins could be forgiven. He’s not here, look at me! This is why so few Catholics believe in the Real Presence anymore. They think He’s not present, even when He really is. They are so busy putting their 8 x 12 out there that they don’t notice anyone else. We, the Faithful, are so distracted by the dramatics of the perpetually needy that we forget why we are at Mass in the first place.

What a difference could be made in the lives of Catholics everywhere if people quit thinking about themselves and actually put the True Actor FIRST during Holy Mass? And if they all performed and participated in Holy Mass the way it’s supposed to be done instead of the way most guaranteed to maximize their exposure and win them accolades in their own dressing room mirror.

13 Comments:

Blogger +JMJ+ said...

Brazilian rainstick was my favorite...probably woke the kids laughing at that one. This was very clever and, sadly, very on the money!

November 15, 2007 9:21 PM  
Blogger Vincenzo said...

"What a difference could be made in the lives of Catholics everywhere if people quit thinking about themselves and actually put the True Actor FIRST during Holy Mass?"

A solution for this problem, in many cases, would be ad orientem masses.

"And if they all performed and participated in Holy Mass the way it’s supposed to be done instead of the way most guaranteed to maximize their exposure and win them accolades in their own dressing room mirror."

I think that we all now realize one of the benefits of the strict rubrics of the older form of the mass.
_________________________________

September 5, 2003

Raymond Arroyo: And that sense of sacrifice and worship that you’ve talked about so eloquently, how do you see that being restored concretely? Will we see a return to the ad orientem posture, facing the East, the priest facing away from the people during the Canon, a return to the Latin, more Latin in the Mass?

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger: Versus orientem, I would say could be a help because it is really a tradition from the Apostolic time, and it’s not only a norm, but it’s an expression also of the cosmical dimension and of the historical dimension of the liturgy. We are celebrating with the cosmos, with the world. It’s the direction of the future of the world, of our history represented in the sun and in the cosmical realities. I think today this new discovering of our relation with the created world can be understood also from the people, better than perhaps 20 years ago. And also, it’s a common direction – priest and people are in common oriented to the Lord. So, I think it could be a help.

November 15, 2007 9:22 PM  
Blogger Terry Nelson said...

You've been coming to Annunciation? Next time you are there we'll have to get together at the sign of peace! Give me a holler!

November 15, 2007 9:32 PM  
Blogger Angela Messenger said...

Good post.

November 15, 2007 10:19 PM  
Blogger Ray from MN said...

I thought I was the "church shopper" around here. Just where have you seen all these aerobatic ushers?

My usual ones spend much of their time shuffling four baskets back and forth.

November 16, 2007 7:20 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Perhaps God is just testing our patience. One thing I do is to attend the least offensive Mass (although, non of our Masses are that offensive - we have a good priest)and sit toward the front to avoid distraction. Unfortunately, I can't always ignore the bad music.

Our entire culture has become one of casualness which often borders on or becomes outright rudeness. Changing the way the priest faces will not have much effect on what folks do before or after Mass.

"This is why so few Catholics believe in the Real Presence anymore."

cathy - I think the way the survey was done on this point was a little skewed. Most Catholics still believe in the True Presence but have failed to study the impact that has on their lives.

November 16, 2007 10:02 AM  
Blogger Mrs Jackie Parkes MJ said...

Thanks be to God! We don't have any of that..

November 16, 2007 1:17 PM  
Blogger ignorant redneck said...

What she said!

November 16, 2007 4:01 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

You hit the nail on the head!

great post!

November 16, 2007 7:44 PM  
Blogger Ma Beck said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

November 16, 2007 8:12 PM  
Blogger Terry Nelson said...

Can you post something new right away? Thanks hon.

November 16, 2007 10:04 PM  
Blogger Ma Beck said...

[Previous comment removed due to paranoia after Terry's last comment.]

;)

November 17, 2007 5:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen, amen, amen! Thank you for this post.

November 17, 2007 7:15 PM  

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