Sunday, May 11, 2014

The Arrogance of the Banal

So, after three weeks of no Easter songs being sung at our Church on Sunday, and an extreme level of horribleness in the banal songs that were being sung, I finally had to say something, so I went up to our, um, fabulous, non-Catholic music ministry guy who never studied music but came to us from the world of local musical theater, after Mass... 

Barb: May I make a request?
Jazz Hands Guy: Um, sure.
Barb: Could we please sing some Easter songs during the Easter season?
Jazz Hands Guy: These are Easter songs! Everything we used this morning was Easter songs.
[Note from Barb: The opening hymn was "Come to the Table of Plenty" then there was "Shelter Me O God" and "Come and Drink" and something else equally non-seasonal]
Barb: Um, No. There are about 25 hymns in the hymnal for Easter --
Jazz Hands Guy: I get everthing from the Archdiocesan guidelines, so if you have a problem you should call the Pope!
Barb: Also, a recent Vatican guideline stipulated that we should not use songs at the liturgy in which the people take on the voice of God.
Jazz Hands Guy: What are you some kind of expert?!
Barb: Yes, actually.
Jazz Hands Guy: (sneering tone) You are? Well, you need to tell the Archdiocese then because --
Barb: I'm telling you. But I guess I should just speak to the pastor.
Jazz Hands Guy: (banging away on the piano with a sneer) Good luck!


Anonymous said...

Why, how dare you question his choice from short list of 37 hymns repeated tear-round, no matter the liturgical season, out of a hymnal with hundreds of them?

Sneer aside, the first choice is to sing the mass antiphons; any "fitting" song is the forth given choice. There actually is no choice for any song out of whim.

Unknown said...

Haha, this reminds me of the time a producer read my faith based comedy screenplay. He called and said, "We love this story and want to make it. The only plot point we can't buy is the fact that a person would stop attending church over the introduction of a new hymnal. It's just not believable that something as small as a choice of music would make a big difference to anyone". Cracked me up since this was based on my mother-in-law leaving her church for just this reason. I told my pastor who rolled his eyes and said, "Oh, how I wish that producer were right".