This is wlatsome

This is wlatsome

I think I’m in agreement with Lane Core on this one. While the idea of reviewing different parishes so that travelers can find a place that celebrates Masses reverently and in a beautiful environment is a good one, by making the reviews open to anyone who comes along anonymously, you open it up to abuse.

What happens is we begin to look at Mass like it’s the theater or a restaurant. “The atmosphere was nice, but the Precious Blood used a bland rose and the Sacred Host had an aftertaste.” Yes, it’s hyperbole, but not far from could show up there. The point is that reviewing is not something just anybody can do well. And it’s not easy to do it well in an anonymous group. There’s a reason why movie and restaurant reviews are done by the same person every time: because you can get a feel for who they are and how their tastes match yours. And that’s what much of what comes up at this particular blog boils down to: taste or preference, if you like.

Finally, while it’s important to desire the Mass to be celebrated with reverence and correctly, we mustn’t become, as my liturgy professor Fr. Giles Dimock, OP, called it, “a sacramental SWAT team,” readying to pounce on every misplaced breath or mispronounced word.

No one this side of heaven will celebrate the Mass perfectly and, at some point, we must put aside our individual concerns and predilections and just celebrate the Mass, and let the Holy Spirit make up for whatever deficiences are in the celebrant or in us.

That’s not to say that there should be a liturgical free-for-all or that I’m against people avoiding parishes where there are liturgical abuses. But, as Lane uses as an example, saying, “Mass itself is forgettable,” steps over the line. Sorry to whomever submitted that review. I’m sure you meant well, but it was too much for me.

Update: Mark Wyman, the man who started the site in question, has taken the criticism to heart and has modified his policies and will try to offer his service with those ideas in mind. Thank you, Mark.

  • I don’t think fixing liturgical abuse was the original goal of the blog, however. The job is to review parishes for people who may be interested in traveling to a particular place and going to Mass.

    Thank you, Mark, for being open to constructive criticism. I think the blog could be a good resource, but you’ll need to work hard to avoid becoming a gossip site and remain a constructive resource.

  • If the priests would only remember we are there to celebrate the Holy SACRIFICE of the Mass much of this discussion would be moot. The K.I.S.S method should be the guiding rule: Keep It Simple and Solemn! I don’t want to hear Father’s latest joke; tell it to me at the next Holy Name meeting. I don’t want anything outside the norms set by Rome. I don’t care for some ‘liturgist’s take’ on how ‘liturgy’ should be ‘done’ in the ‘worship space’. Offer up the Mass as glory to God and for our benefit. And would the last one out please remove that ugly macrame left over from the 70’s…