Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Traditional Mass in Miami Area and the New Evangelization

Blanca Morales, Florida Catholic. 
In one sense, liturgy is evangelization. "The holy and apostolic faith" is presented in its fullness in the liturgy especially during the Holy Mass, where we are presented with the most precious mystery of the faith in the Eucharist. It is also part of the New Evangelization, because it should draw us ever more to interior conversion and renewal, towards Our Lord and fleeing from sin.

So, this little nugget from the Archdiocese of Miami came my way via Fr. Z. My emphases  and comments. 
CORAL GABLES | Joshua Hernandez is a former Protestant who credits the traditional Latin Mass for his conversion to Catholicism. 
Raised to be anti-Catholic, Hernandez began to look for a Christian denomination with historical relevance and formal liturgical practice. Though he thought Catholicism seemed too ritualistic, his first stop in his search for a church was attending a Mass to “get it out of the way.”
“It all clicked,” he said, when he saw the Latin Mass “in all its glory.” [My point has been made!]
Now he is a regular attendee at the Extraordinary Form Latin Mass celebrated each Sunday at 9 a.m. at Sts. Francis and Clare Mission in Edgewater.
Likewise, his girlfriend, Vida Tavakoli, knew she had found her home in the Catholic Church when she first attended Latin Mass in England. [Notice the international vibe of the congregants. It is Miami but still...]
Formerly an atheist, her aversion toward religion changed at the end of her college career, when she became a Protestant. During her post-collegiate travels she became resolute in converting to Catholicism after attending a Missa Cantata, or sung Mass, in the parish of her favorite author, J.R.R. Tolkien, a devout Catholic who penned the “Lord of the Rings” series.
Though the homilies, the first reading and a translation of the Gospel are said in the vernacular, the prayers at the Extraordinary Form of the Mass are chanted in Latin, in the Church’s traditional Gregorian form. [Nice how they promote Missa Cantata and Missa Solemnis over Low Mass. Low Mass is a daily option, or a last-resort on Sunday. Oh, and don't forget polyphony!]
When she heard Latin hymns coming from the choir loft, Tavakoli said, it felt like “hearing angels on high.” [The Regina Caeli incipit was whispered to Gregory the Great by an angel.]
She was mesmerized. “It truly is extraordinary,” she said. “There is something beautiful and sacred about this form of the Mass.” [Not banal!]
Many of those in attendance each Sunday at Sts. Francis and Clare are, in fact, young adults like Hernandez and Tavakoli, younger Catholics who did not grow up attending Mass in Latin. ...................
Today, priests interested in celebrating the Latin Mass often learn the Extraordinary Form on their own. Though most seminaries focus on teaching the novus ordo, many are beginning to host workshops for those interested in the Extraordinary Form. [The expectation for Madison is that you will know the TLM.]
The schola, or choir, at Sts. Francis and Clare is directed by Jennifer Donelson, a young adult and assistant professor at Nova Southeastern University, where she directs the Nova Bossa Chorale and teaches various subjects in music.  [She writes for New Liturgical Movement!]
[Interesting background stuff...]................
The schola “enjoys the privilege of glorifying God and sanctifying the faithful through our dedication to singing the Mass in truly sacred music, music from the heart of the Church,” Donelson said. “Gregorian chant ‘grew up’ with the Roman rite, and it is an integral part of the structure and mystagogy of the Mass.” 
Paulina Pecic, a student at the University of Miami who attends St. Augustine parish in Coral Gables, recently attended her first Latin Mass while visiting Ave Maria University on Florida’s southwest coast.
“It was beautiful,” she said, hoping for another “chance to embrace the extra beauty that the chanting might offer.”
           Like Stacey [Student in deleted paragraph], most Catholic school students are not                   taught about the Extraordinary Form  in their religion classes. [I tried in CCD, but it's too            hard. However, the upper students at Immaculata will have Mass in the EF weekly!                 Brick-by-brick.]
For that reason, the young adults of the forthcoming Juventutem Miami chapter seek to propagate their love and enthusiasm for the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, so that others can come to know and appreciate it.
Pecic said she appreciated the “reverential aspect that can sometimes be watered down, or, in a worst-case scenario, completely disregarded by the congregation during the Ordinary Form.”
“I especially enjoyed Communion (at traditional Latin Mass), where instead of going up to the priest, the priest comes to you at the kneeler,” she said. “It was a visible reminder for me that receiving Christ in the Eucharist is a gift given out of love and not a right to claim for granted.”
As to which form of the Mass she likes better, she said, “It’s like comparing apples and oranges. I think both the Ordinary and the Extraordinary are beautiful in their own ways. The Ordinary Form makes the Mass accessible to every person in the Body of Christ by means of comprehensive, yet still profound language, whereas the more mysterious Extraordinary Form inspires awe by drawing us into contemplation of the very mysteries of the Word Himself.” [Pick for yourself. ICEL 1973 and 1998 is what certain clergy wanted us to have. ICEL 2011 is what was forced on us. Not that I mind! But given the underlying desires and motives, I think her words lean towards the latter description, no? Beautiful phrasing, by the way]

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