Sunday, January 22, 2017

Am I Officially a Mass Snob?

I went to confession for the first time in 5 weeks and attended Mass for the first time in 2 months (exactly!) yesterday evening. It was glorious... but, before I get to the "juicy" part, I wanted to share something else.

When we went to confession (prior to Mass), I just wanted to stay close to the statue and icons of Mama Mary. I can't explain it; I just felt like I wanted to be close to that little area of the church. In a way, I knew it meant that I wanted to be close to Mama Mary and, thus, be close to her son. Since we had a while before Mass, I spent half an hour in the adoration chapel at the church. I prayed and I teared up because I missed going to confession and Mass. After weeks of lightheadedness, dizziness, aches, pains, heart palpitations, stomach issues, and fear of not being able to drive safely, I was able to go to Mass. I was happy... and then Mass began.

I should start off by saying that Mass is wonderful. I love Mass and felt so blessed to have had the opportunity to attend. We knew it would rain all day today (side note: I can hear the rain beating against our roof as I type this) so we agreed to attend the Saturday Vigil Mass to avoid the rain. We chose a local parish because the local FSSP priests don't offer Saturday Vigil Mass due to their lack of parish. (second side note: they current share a parish and are accepting donations to build their own so they can offer more Masses). Though I've attended mostly Ordinary Form Masses all my life, I was surprised at what a shock it was to return to them after attending only Latin Mass for a couple of weeks before my horrible no Mass streak.

The acoustic-electric guitar made me cringe. The random version of the Gloria which I had never heard before made me feel uncomfortable. The hymns... "No," I said to myself. "I'm going to be thankful for the musician's gift of music and his sharing of his gift to people." I tried to be charitable. A woman behind us answered her cell phone during Mass and said something along the lines of "I can't talk; I'm at church right now..." She also talked at least once more during Mass. I tried to push any uncharitable thoughts and tried to focus on Mass. "I'm here... I'm grateful." Thankfully, Fr. N's homily was wonderfully thought-provoking so I enjoyed that. When I received the Eucharist, I knelt and teared up again. I was so happy to have received Him after being away for so long.

After Mass, Mom and I talked about our experience. I missed the quietness and, well, reverence of the Latin Mass. I missed people ignoring their cell phones. I missed the choir. I just missed Latin Mass and everything about it. Does this make me a terrible person for preferring the Extraordinary Form of Mass and not feeling terribly happy and comfortable during Ordinary Form Masses; for cringing when they bring out guitars during Mass? Am I officially a Mass snob? All I know is that I know what I prefer and what makes me feel closer to God and that's the Latin Mass.

Anyway, just some random thoughts on this cold and rainy Sunday afternoon. Since we don't keep the apartment warm -- we don't use the furnace, I'm going to walk around the apartment and maybe make myself a cup of tea to warm up a bit.

I hope y'all are having a lovely Sunday!

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

13 comments:

AnneMarie said...

I'm so, so happy you got to receive the sacrament of Confession, and go to Mass and receive Jesus!!!!! That must have been so awesome. It would be totally jarring, though, to attend a Mass like that after going to the Latin Mass. I think it would be jarring to attend a Mass that has guitars after going to my parish's Ordinary Form Mass (my parish has a great, reverent attitude with organ music and a gorgeous church), because I just think guitars in Mass seem really out-of-place a lot of the times. It definitely is way easier for me to focus and pray at Latin Masses or peaceful Novus Ordo Masses.

Emmy Cecilia said...

Thank you, AnneMarie! I'm so glad to hear your parish has organ music. I don't think some people quite understand how important music is during Mass for some of us. Reverent Novus Ordo Masses are also lovely but hard to find out here, especially for Saturday Vigil Mass.

Wolf Whispering Thunder Owl said...

I don't think you're a Mass snob. You have pursued your faith and appreciate a Mass well said. As happens, when various things occur (as they will), you refocus your attention where it belongs - and this often is not as easy to do as it looks. It's so easy for resentments to set in that further ruin the moment - yet you've worked at your faith to the point where you field it, refocus and resume your prayer. You cooperate with the grace of God as you do it. And the music? I don't really think it's so much the guitar, but likely how it was employed. Of course there's always the tradition that says such and such instruments are church ones and this or that is not. But the music itself is written on the page...and yet how it's written is often left to the interpretation by the performer. And if the performer isn't educated in church music, too much is left to chance. You were likely the recipient of one who was offering their gift but for whatever reason wasn't performing it as a skilled church musician might have approached it. You allowed the grace of God to work as you prayed the Mass, just as the musician playing probably felt they were doing the same thing. We can but hope (another catholic virtue) that more musicians acquire the know how to praise God with their music in ways that enhance the Mass rather than take from it.

Emmy Cecilia said...

Thank you, Wolf! I agree on the musician perhaps not having enough experience; he seemed younger than I and I believe he just began his music ministry.

Kelly said...

Just a side note... you'll never find a Saturday evening Vigil Mass at an FSSP apostolate, whether or not they have a parish.
Vigil Masses for Sunday are not a part of the Extraordinary Form. ;)

Emmy Cecilia said...

Kelly - I did not know that! Thank you so much for letting me know. I'm new to the world of FSSP. I have seen/been to Saturday Vigil Mass in Latin before. They have them the 2nd Saturday of every month at a local parish. Not FSSP affiliated.

Kelly said...

Interesting! It's a whole new world to navigate, isn't it?! But oh, so glorious! Keep it up...your taste for the true, good, and beautiful is admirable!

Emmy Cecilia said...

It truly is, Kelly. I feel so fortunate to not only attend Latin Mass with the FSSP priests but also get to know the priests outside of Mass. Both are wonderfully holy men. And, thank you!

Roseanne said...

I sympathize with you.After several years of the Latin Mass again, it's perfect language of silence and God centered readings, I plead for all Catholics in spirit and truth to find again in their hearts an experience the pure worship of the ancient Mass of all ages. Thank you for your post.

Jack Burton said...

.....please, take no offense. .....but what we like or dislike. ...desire or not, really doesn't matter. It's wonderful if we get warm fuzzies from going to Holy Mass....but it isn't required. Saint Monica, mother of Saint Augustine, was given spiritual drought for 40 years....no consulations..no feel goods...she prayed and prayed and recieved nothing for 40 years....like or dislike is irrelevant! All that matters is what God desires of you!...if given the gift of consulation, give thanks and take it.....for tomorrow you may be tried, and be required to carry on without them...we never know....

Emmy Cecilia said...

Roseanne = Thank you for your kind comment. :)

Emmy Cecilia said...

Jack - No offense taken. I think you may be new to the blog since you've spoken of two topics I've touched upon more than once in the past: 1) struggling with spiritual dryness and 2) knowing that we can't rely on feelings; that we must keep going forward even if we receive no consolation. :) I definitely agree with you. I was just merely saying that I have a preference when it comes to Mass. :)

Thespia said...

The beauty of the Ordinariate masses and the Cathedrals I'd visited were what made me want to become Catholic. I've since then been to visit several "normal" masses and know this cringing feeling all too well. God made our hearts for beauty. When people fall to the lowest common denominator, it makes our hearts long for more. We KNOW there is more. Why don't others want it to be beautiful? I'm so thankful for the Ordinariate. Wish there were one in LA you could visit!