Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Local Girl Finds Fun Studying with French Monks

There is a two-part interview and story in the California Catholic Daily with Mary Ann Carr Wilson: 1 and 2. Mary Ann has grown up with the growth of the chant movement in this country, having attended the Sacred Music Colloquium when it was small and fledgling and coming most years since, and watching as it became large, evangelistic, and musically sophisticated.

The big change in her musical life came when she was tapped to provide musical direction for an FSSP parish. Now she is in charge of music for extraordinary form Masses.

And this is interesting:

What I like about the Extraordinary Form is:

1.) It’s less prone to abuse because less options; the culture of obedience is stronger and more stable than a culture of options

2.) There is an explicit and rich Catholic identity in all prayers

3.) There are beautiful, theologically rich Offertory prayers, excised in the Ordinary Form

4.) The sung Gradual and Alleluia are more conducive to meditation and recollection than the Responsorial Psalm and Gospel Acclamation, often poorly composed ditties.

5.) I especially don't miss the Prayers of the Faithful or the Sign of Peace as they are often experienced in parishes.

6.) This is valid in both forms, but I appreciate praying in the same direction as the priest, who faces liturgical east. Feels more like the Church moving
together, led by the priest as shepherd and father, in the person of Christ.

7.) The full use of Gregorian propers. Valid in both forms, but more
common to experience in the Extraordinary Form.

8.) I appreciate the use of the communion rail and receiving our Lord kneeling and from a priest or deacon. Personally I am able to recollect more this way.

9.) I do not miss cluttered sanctuaries with tons of lay people and concelebrating priests. Though I know the Church allows much of this, to me it obscures the Mass.

What I don’t like about the Extraordinary Form:

1.I miss singing the Pater Noster

2.) I wish the entrance was the Introit, for which it was composed, often neglected in both Ordinary and Extraordinary forms.
On the last two points, it's my understanding that having the people sing the Pater Noster is now permitted in the extraordinary form, but overcoming a local tradition can be difficult. As for the introit, she is so right about this. The Asperges is to come before the introit only on the primary Mass on Sunday but this is the very Mass that most often uses the sung Introit too. I'm not sure there is a way to use the Introit as the entrance under these conditions.