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August 24, 2009

It's Time to Invoke the Spirit of Vatican II

“Ordinaries [i.e., diocesan bishops], by the encouragement and favor they show to art which is truly sacred, should strive after noble beauty rather than mere sumptuous display. . . .

“Let bishops carefully remove from the house of God and from other sacred places those works of artists which are repugnant to faith, morals, and Christian piety, and which offend true religious sense either by depraved forms or by lack of artistic worth, mediocrity and pretense” (Sacrosanctum Concilium 124).


11 comments:

  1. Who knew that the church in Hungary and Los Angeles had so much in common?

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  2. Most of these songs have religious themes, who are we to impose our personal view that they do not qualify as sacred music? Hey, they even sang in latin, how much more appopriate can you get? And the dresses they wore even came down below their knees! The Pope himself would be pleased!

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  3. The pope would be pleased with this?

    Um, not so much.

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  4. I must have missed hearing that the theme of "Phantom of the Opera" was considered Church music.

    Whoever let them in the church has got some splainin' to do.

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  5. there IS a doctrine on what is considered SACRED music ya know. it directs us to know that sacred is synonymous with holy, meaning 'other'. sacred art is not SUPPOSED to resemble pop art, least of all in music. it does not regard whether there is an appropriate 'hook' or a catchy first line, or whether there is enough 'umphh' in the chorus. it is ordered toward difference and otherness, not commonness. it is in THIS way that the Church demonstrates to us the ability of music to TRULY inspire us beyond mediocracy and vulgarity. What I just witnessed on video is VULGAR, it is vulgar in that it is COMMON. It is PRETENSIVE in that it pre-supposes acceptance by virtue of its commonality. This is a logical contradiction for VIRTUE (arete - excellence) in its definition transcends by rising above commonness. But the girls showing their midriffs in Church, and trying to dress seductively by showing the form of their bodies is what most lacks artistic merit. It is expected that in performance, all aspects of presentation are considered as part of such a performance, and this does not preclude the manner of appearance of the artist. So, yes, this is highly profane.

    Jesus humbled himself so laying his life upon that cross for our sin. Can we not imagine ourselves so humbly? Are we so vain we cannot candidly express our Love for Christ by authentic virtue, the virtue of humility?

    -mwr

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  6. is that a sergio leone song in there? yes, i thought i recognized that from clint eastwood.

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  7. talented, yes

    appropriate for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, nope.

    perhaps a bit more fabric, and a less prominent place (other than the sanctuary) would make it appropriate

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  8. Here's the problem: People don't even *know* what classical or sacred music is. Years ago it was my job to handle weddings at the parish where I worked. A couple insisted that they didn't want our usual music director/organist. They were going to bring in a string quartet. "We want it all to be classical." I was thrilled, as the musical tastes in that neck of the woods were a little plebian.

    Wedding day arrives. String quartet plays the bride down the aisle - to "Phantom of the Opera." (Why would you want that at your wedding anyway???) Then quartet, who had been given the music for a Catholic mass, randomly plays something, anything, anytime the priest is not talking. (He was a little taken aback when the Sanctus sounded as he sat down for the first reading.) For the rest of the mass, he said, he just kept going, not giving them a second to come in with more music, totally petrified at what might be coming next.

    Needless to say, our organist was back on the bench for the next wedding. After that, "On Eagle's Wings" was almost a relief.

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  9. I was personally offended and disgusted that they would *use* this holy place (with the altar as the backdrop no less) to *sell* themselves. The music is not so much the point. It's that a sacred house of God is not the place to put on a music show. Repugnant!

    And yes, what they were wearing was very distasteful. Cover yourselves, please.

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