Sunday, March 08, 2009

The sound of music

Have you ever been to a folk mass? In many Catholic and Episcopal churches they were very popular back in the late 60s and early 70s. Sometimes I wish we could bring them back. There is a certain excitement in all the people singing with great joy! All too often we sing in church like it is a great effort or we don’t sing at all, and let the choir do all the work.

Last night I was at a very small mass – I think there were only nine or ten of us, but we sang with joy. The mass setting was not familiar to me, but it didn’t matter. The fact that the priest was not familiar with English and sang often off key was also no problem. We had a superb cantor, and as I said, we had a lot of joy!

Afterward at dinner we all gathered around and sang while one of those present played the guitar. I broke into a lot of old songs like The Wedding Banquet, Edelweiss, and I Am The Bread of Life. The traditional music at mass this morning just won’t seem the same!

Since I am on vacation, I am going to a different church this morning and perhaps the music will be different. I have heard good things about the all volunteer choir and the new music director where I am going.

This afternoon there will be more music for me as I head to Berkeley to an interfaith service followed by an organ recital. (Yes, I DO like organ too)!


Anonymous said...

I love it when people's singing reflects the nature of what they're singing. Amazing Grace has EXCLAMATION POINTS if you sing it like it's real! Same with the other songs in church - it's crazy to me when people sing songs about salvation and redemption and restoration and joy... but sound like they're mourning. Don't get me wrong, I love some reverence, too. But I think the folk services you were referring to must've been pretty cool. :)

Michael + said...

Indeed! Scripture says "make a joyful noise," yet sometimes as you say, we seem to be in mourning. Thanks for your comments - I so agree!