Sunday, December 20, 2009

The New Mass Isn't To Blame...
But the mindset that keeps downward spiral continues

The mistakes made 100 years+ ago with the Germans, the Irish, The Poles, the Italians... the same mistakes continue today.

Here's what I'm getting at - you'll be hard pressed to find a parish, any parish, in this country that doesn't have a Spanish-language Novus Ordo Mass on their Sunday schedule.

Mariachi choirs, Day of the Dead altars, oversized flags of Mexico draped over statues of Our Lady of Guadalupe, etc, etc. You name it. It's all so very Mexerrific.

Needless to say, you aren't going to find many Nikolaus Weithmann's, Daniel O'Sweany's, Stanislaus Zdzitowiecki's or Giuseppe Sgambelluri's at an ¡Ay, Caramba! liturgical celebration. This very much reminds me of the propaganda against the Traditional Latin Mass - "it's so divisive! It will divide the parish!"

Yeah... right.

Anyhoo, As the cultural Catholics began the immigration to America, where was the one place they could go to be with "their own"? Simple... the parish church. Yeah, it was a self-defense mechanism, and to a certain degree, it made sense.

But the fatal flaw was the ethnic emphasis. To this day, there are certain parts of this country where you could hear it said "no, don't go to Immaculate Heart. That's the Dago parish", "stay away from St. Peter's... that's where the Micks go". You get the picture.

In more than a few cases, as it was then as it is now, the emphasis is/was placed on ethnicity and not spirituality. And as the assimilation of the cultural Catholics into the greater American society progressed, the abandonment of Catholicism followed suit. There simply wasn't a need to go to your friendly neighborhood parish for the most part.

The facts speak for themselves. 50 short years ago when a bishop said something, Catholics listened. Not anymore. Grand pronouncements from the Chanceries are hardly given a second thought. But I've posted on that particular topic before.

But I digress... then as now, the emphasis is placed on nationality, ethnicity, skin color. It's going to take a couple of decades, but as soon as the assimilation takes place, the Latinos will abandon the Faith just as quickly as their European brethren have.

Mark my words.

11 Comments:

Blogger Al said...

Cavey, DBQ is living proof of that. Back in days gone by the Irish & Germans were POed that the prayers after Mass were said in French at the Cathederal so they wanted their own parish. & since they couldn't get along, the result was 2 Churches 2 blocks apart. Now the German Church which is the most beautiful is being closed because th Irish Church is now the Spanish language parish. never mind combining the 2 into 1 parish (they already share a priest etc) & keeping St. Mary's open, that wouldn't fit into the liberal PC mindset in the Chancery.

Which brings me to your comment: "Grand pronouncements from the Chanceries are hardly given a second thought." In the case of the DBQ Archdiocese that isn't a bad thing since they would probably be antithetical to authentic Catholicism anyway.

3:35 AM  
Blogger Joe of St. Thérèse said...

More with the focus on US instead of Ood...was a problem then, still a problem today...bring back the Latin Mass...fortunately our buddy Fr. Loren will be offering a Tridentine Midnight Mass.

3:52 AM  
Blogger Cliff said...

Sorry, I really don't get where you're going with this. Are you saying ethnicity is bad? I'm thinking you mean to point out that latin/tradition unifies. We should put aside our ethnicity at Mass and be one body in Christ. There now, is that it?

5:24 AM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

Cliff,
Ethnicity isn't bad... radical litirgical inculturation is.

How many people with the last name of Sanchez attend the Polish-language Novus Ordo (complete with Oompa-Band)? When was the last time you saw an O'Malley at a Filipino-language Novus Ordo (yes with a Kulintang rockin' to 'On Eagles Wings')?

Like I said, ethnicity is fine... but let's check that nonsense at the door to the church. We're suppose to be Catholics of the Latin Rite. We both know what happens when someone/something tries to be everything to everyone.

If whatever group so desires a celebration of national/ethnic pride... fine. AFTER Mass at the parish hall will work just fine.

We saw what happened last time a rather large building was constructed that catered to every tongue.

In the meantime, keep the good posts comin' Cliff!

6:22 AM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

I've noticed that my parish is really two parishes. The Latinos and whites have nothing to do with each other. I once went to a Spanish Mass becuase I'd missed all the English ones and you would've thought I'd come from Mars. Some folks looked at us in askance, "This isn't your Mass what are you doing here?" Others glared. As soon as Mass was over I was out of there.

We have a Korean parish and a Vietnamese parish. We also have a black parish and a huge Latino parish.

11:38 AM  
Blogger VSO said...

We Orthodox have a word for this: phyletism. It's a heresy. It means putting one's ethnicity BEFORE their Faith.

For example, those "irish" people who BMW'd (bitched, moaned and whined) to Abp. John Nienstadt of St. Paul/Minneapolis not allowing a dispensation for St. Patrick's which fell during Lent (it is always during Great Lent for me) saying "I'm Irish first," they are heretics. And frankly Cavepeople, those people are pussies anyway because they consider it a huge inconvenience to not eat meat on Fridays FOR A WHOLE FIVE WEEKS!! Boo hoo! I haven't had ANY meat in four weeks and wont get to until January 7 (I observe the Julian Calendar) unless of course I'm offered some by a non-orthodox friend/host and I don't want to offend them.

4:46 PM  
Blogger Adeodatus49 said...

VSO is correct, unfortunately. There is a lot of phyletism among Catholics.

BTW, have you tried soy burgers to get you through the St. Phillip's fast? LOL :-) just kidding.

6:45 PM  
Blogger the Egyptian said...

Funny our area is all German for many generations and all we get is English ;>)
You'd think that in a deanery of over 18 parishes we could get an occasional simple Latin low mass, oh no that would be divisive, now we have a priest that uses props for a sermon and does the silly over emphasis of words in the prayers and consecration, I'm going to be sick

8:54 PM  
Blogger Former Altar Boy said...

I grew up in a multi-ethnic city with a large immigrant population in the first half of the 20th Century. There was plenty of what was known as the "German" parish or the "Polish" parish, or Irish, or Italian, or etc. parish. A lot of it wasn't so much ethnic pride or separatism on the part of the church as it was by local politics. The Krauts loved in that part of town, The Policks on the other side, the wops lived in that ward, and the Micks were over there. But, I'll say this, they were all loyal to the Roman Cathiloic Church and they all prayed the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in one universal language every time they attended. The readings and sermon MAY have been in their native language but more often than not it was in their adoptyed language, English, which they were proud to learn because they were AMERICANS sans hyphen.

And, all add this, too. Those hard-working immigrants chipped in their nickels and dimes every week to build beautiful edifices to God that anyone passing by outside could easily recognize as a church.

11:12 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

I see where you're going with this and it makes sense.

We went to a reconciliation service (with individual confession) on Saturday; parts of the service were in Spanish, parts in English. Translated in the bulletin we received.

Great. Except I don't speak Spanish. So I had to follow along. Likewise for the people who were there who spoke only Spanish.

Wouldn't it be great if Latin was the language of the Church - then I and my Spanish-speaking brethren would all worship in the SAME language - so no one was left out.

Is it because this position makes PERFECT sense that people shy away from it?

11:45 PM  
Blogger Dirtdartwife said...

I was blessed enough at the age of 15 to attend a Mass at St. Peter's Basilica. It was Palm Sunday and PJPII presided. You can only imagine how HUGE that crowd was. Thousands of people, from all over the world. And he did it in Latin. Guess what, people followed along just fine. We followed along in Latin, our books had translations into English, but we'd respond to everything in Latin.

All those thousands of people, from all over the world, unified in ONE language to celebrate ONE Mass. It was awesome!!!

9:47 AM  

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