Monday, January 28, 2008

Private Mass of the Pope


Oh, what a circus, Oh what a show!

The Cathedral of Auch in the Diocèse of Gers hosts what must be the silliest Mass of all time. Not least for the gymnastics that accompanied the reading of the Gospel. All time low point in Catholic liturgy.

Dancing for the Offertory - maybe even the Elevation.

Juggling- dropped the Faith long ago

No comment.
The proper name for the whole charade

A commentary from a priest about the occasion, which does a beautiful job of accidental self-satire.

"What beautiful things were experienced during these three days of preparation for the Mass on television.”

By Father Lavenère, we felt welcomed into a large family composed of about thirty people representing 15 different occupations…

And with a dozen of them, we were very close and collaborators in the work of preparation, rehearsal and also in moments of friendly encounter, unforgettable during the discovery of local gastronomy much appreciated by our friends in Paris! I think that in these three days with us, they enjoyed duck in all its forms! As well as Armagnac much appreciated as a digestif (or as a gargle for the Priest who feared that he would loose his voice and wanted to treat his cold…).

Many told me of their wonder: a cathedral enlightened as never before! Young people of Pop Circus moving about with a lot of grace and solemnity (for which we even earned the praise of the producer of the broadcast of the "Day of the Lord" Brother Arnaud de Coral, who was somewhat stressed at the outset by the idea of integrating "circus" into the liturgy). We all have preconceived notions and the circus is actually just not clowning around… And then with André de Lavenère and Damien Supiot as presiders, there were no worries… The movements of the students from Pop Cicus melted naturally into the action of grace celebrated in the magnificent jewellery box which is our cathedral.

If all the locals have not pressed into the cathedral (+ 500 people in spite of everything), many told me that they followed the Mass on television! It's always impressive to know that we are watched by over one million people! Even some well-known local cafes, broadcast the Mass on their television for their customers, which if we are to believe what the landlords told me, followed the Mass while taking a glass of wine! . In any case, I am not sure that next Sunday at the same time, in the same cafes, there will be broadcast live the "Day of the Lord"…

It is a unique experience to preside over a Mass on television and so rewarding. Everything is superbly well organised and if we feel at the beginning concern at being live, we quickly forget that the cameras are all discrete enough to make room for prayer.

Finally Sunday evening, at the time of the Angelus, a tightrope walker from Marseille climbed the towers of the cathedral on a cable stretched from the Caisse d'Epargne without being attached! The peak was 28 metres high. I had the grace and honour to welcome him at the end of his ascension to the top of the tower, seeing his gratitude to the Good Lord and the Blessed Virgin (He assured me also of his devotion to Notre Dame de la Garde, in good Marseille dialect) and he thanked me for allowing this exercise on this beautiful monument. All the organisers have been very touched by this gesture that cost nothing but a few smiles and three small jokes…

The Good Lord touches hearts as he wants and when he wants. Let him receive all graces and honours since it is to Him that they return before anyone!

Churches face uncertain future

as closures loom :

"Mounting alarm has been created by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Lancaster when he questioned recently the future of some of the finest churches in his diocese. In Preston, which was granted city status to mark the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, there is talk of closure of a number of the best preserved Catholic churches in the country, including St Walburge’s, with the tallest spire of any parish church in England"

Local Priest Turns To Magic

To Spread Word.

Imagine if St Paul had done a magic roadshop around Asia Minor. Catholicism would have got precisely nowhere.