September 22, 2011

Jesus is Surveyed!

My favorite local progressive parish, recently did a survey of its parishioners. Business minded folks who see all churches as a business may praise this survey. Surveying parishioners is not always a bad thing, but, seriously, surveying parishioners about "inclusive language", "length of the Mass", "guest speakers", "quality of the musicians"? Ok, honestly, the entire thing gives me a headache.

What's next? Surveying the relevence of the Scripture readings?

"How satisfied are you with the Gospel readings on Sunday?"
"How relevent are the Scripture readings to your lived experience and your spiritual journey?"
Follow-up question: "Do you want us to bring the reflections by Matthew Fox back?"
"How pissed off are you that the Tabernacle blocks your view of the guitarist?" (question only applicable if you don't attend Mass in the gym) Answers on a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being feeling non-peacemaker like, 1 being couldn't care less)
"Would you like to see interpretive dance and puppetry incorporated at every Mass?"

I'm being extremely sarcastic and I know it, but, honestly, aren't some questions we may want to survey our parish about best asked in an educational setting like, oh, say, RCIA or a Catechism class or Catholicism 101? Settings where the appropriate instructor could respond with knowledgeable and instructive answers on "Why do Catholics do THAT?" instead of just throwing surveys around that suggest Faith is subject to popular vote - because if it is we are in trouble.

4 Comments:

Blogger Ray from MN said...

Ever since the adoption of the Novus Ordo Mass of Vatican II, where the celebrant faces the congregation and the musical groups have been moved up to the altar, just like the Protestants, Mass has become a form of Sunday entertainment.

Few people could describe what is actually happening on the altar during a Mass. And few care. They want a dynamic preacher with a relevant social gospel message accompanied by great music and lots of conviviality and mingling at the end.

September 22, 2011 6:38 PM  
Blogger Adoro said...

Ray ~ Be fair. The priest versus populum is not without historical context and although that has been used to define the Ordinary Form to the ignorant, the fact is that Mass was celebrated Ad Orientem no matter the location of the altar. That means even in deep history, at times the Priest faced versus populum, albeit with the understanding that he was facing Christ and not catering to the entertainment quota of the audience as people in our age understand it.

And Cathy, I'm starting to use quizzes, as are others; they help us to know where we should focus on bring this big beheamoth of a ship back around from the pirates who have held us all captive since the late 60's! ;-)

September 23, 2011 12:20 AM  
Blogger Adoro said...

OK, just realized I misstated above: Ray...read "Feast of Faith" by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, and "Spirit of the Liturgy" and you'll get in long form the proper message I totally butchered and for which I will do much penance!

:-)

September 23, 2011 12:23 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

""How satisfied are you with the Gospel readings on Sunday?"
"How relevent are the Scripture readings to your lived experience and your spiritual journey?"
Follow-up question: "Do you want us to bring the reflections by Matthew Fox back?"


Hilarious!

As to the rest? What Ray said...

September 23, 2011 12:41 PM  

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