Wednesday, 25 October 2006

An Up and Down Sort of Day

Today has been one of ups and downs... I tried to give thanks for the "ups", and to offer up the "downs" but with little success, I fear...

I started on a positive note: I didn't oversleep, and made it to Mass in plenty of time. Things started to go downhill rapidly when the supply priest proceeded to start Mass with a cheery grin and several comments on what a nice day it was and how happy he was to see us all. I don't do cheery in the morning, still less at Mass.

It was Novus Ordo at its worst: well, almost: we didn't have to sing any ghastly hymns, which was a blessing. The Kyrie was "made up" in that the sentences used to preceed the "Lord, have mercy" and "Christ, have mercy" were vague references to how we might have upset other people. And we got a homily which seemed to be the priest "sharing" his thoughts about nothing much in particular. Unfortunately he took over five minutes to share these thoughts. The bit that upset me most was the fact that he changed the words of Consecration - he substituted the words "all people" for "all men."

Quite apart from the fact that no priest has the authority to muck about with any of the words at Mass, still less at the Consecration, the gratuitous use of so-called inclusive language really gets up my nose. It is downright patronising... I resent the implication that I, as a woman, will not have the intelligence to understand the meaning of the word "men" as used in the context of the Mass, and will be offended by my perceived "exclusion." I really shouldn't let it get to me, but it winds me up something rotten...

I then drove to Eastbourne to visit my mother. Traffic on the M25 was pretty grim, but once I turned off on the A21 towards Tunbridge Wells it improved. Unfortunately the weather didn't: I cast rather envious thoughts towards Fr Tim who was, no doubt, sunning himself in the Eternal City. I also chatted to a friend of mine, Christina, on the mobile phone (I used my hands free kit) and she said that she would try to make it down for my renewal of vows along with her family.

I spent a pleasant afternoon chatting to my mother and stepfather - slightly marred by the news that my sister and her husband had been involved in a minor car crash on Saturday when they'd visited Eastbourne. No serious damage but my sister is pregnant, and so it was a little worrying. She has recovered from the shock, and I shall be visiting her on Saturday afternoon.

I also got to play with my mother's new cat. Jess is the cutest kitten, she's five months old and in fact it is her picture on my profile at the moment. My cat, Sylvester, being black, doesn't show up so well in photos! Anyway, Jess has six toes on each paw, some sort of genetic mutation quite common in cats, and she also has the most enormous paws. If the proportions work out the same way as for dogs, she is going to be a pretty large cat when she grows up.

I managed to snaffle one of my mother's paintings before she threw it out - she's a really good artist IMHO, but very self-critical. It's a picture of the Houses of Parliament, a sort of sunset-scene, in acrylics, and it needs framing, but I'm very pleased I managed to rescue it.

After a very nice dinner of spaghetti bolognese I made my way back home. The traffic had improved, but the weather hadn't, and the journey took just under two hours. Having fed Sylvester, I then proceeded to check out my favourite blogs. And now it's time for bed... I have an appointment with the physiotherapist tomorrow morning before Mass, and I wouldn't want to oversleep....

4 comments:

DilexitPrior said...

I don't do cheery in the morning, still less at Mass.

Hehehe, well, this comment brought cheer to my night (it's 10:47pm here) and made me laugh. Not because of your misery, but because I understand. . .

I hope Fr. Tim doesn't read this post from Rome. He needs to enjoy the sun and not worry about how Mass is being celebrated in Lambeth.

Anonymous said...

I think you should amend or take down this post. I too am a woman and feel I have a right to having Mass said in fidelity to the Magisterium of the Church - Liturgical abuses sadden me. However, your post is publically highly critical of a priest who can easily be identified by anyone present at that Mass and reading this Blog. I am not sure what such public 'naming and shaming' is meant to achieve. We should pray for priests who are straying from fidelity to The Magisterium...offer scarifices of our own to make up for such abuses. I am not saying remain silent and thereby be complicit to wrongs in the modern church but at the same time what does the approach of this blog entry achieve?

Paulinus said...

Sounds like Rabbi Lionel Blue said Mass.

"Good morning, Jim. Good morning Sarah"

Ma Beck said...

Anon,
I respectfully disagree. I appreciate the points you make, but I would like to make a couple also.
No priest was named in this post. If one wants to put 2 and 2 together, well, then, so be it. This post was not put up to publicly shame anyone. It was a simple story about a morning Mass wherein the words of consecration were ad-libbed and the author felt irked by the patronizing, unnecessary use of gender-inclusive language.
And...
a priest SHOULD be ashamed when he will not obey the instructions of his Bride, the Church.
I appreciate your fidelity to the Church and your self-sacrifice and prayers in reparation for these abuses. But if prayerful silence is our only response to offenses against Our Lord, we will continue down the path of liturgical insanity.

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