"Certify" the Mass

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Crusader

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Not to be overly controversial, but it’s too bad that a highly respected, non-profit organization couldn’t be formed whose sole purpose was to report on the quality of Masses being celebrated within the USA.

This organization could visually audit Masses using criteria already defined by the Church – the GIRM. If they met the requriements of the Church, both parishes and individual celebrants could be certified for a period of time until the next audit.

This organization could be funded by the sale of a guide – sort of a Michelin Guide of sorts. In some cases I’m sure dioceses would be willing to pay for audits if the organization’s reputation became respected enough.

I can already hear the nattering nabobs of negativism on such a proposal. On the other hand, I can imagine some dioceses actually requesting audits…
 
Dear Crusader,
This is a very interesting idea. It would be nice to have a guide to liturigurically correct Masses if one was travelling, or moving to a new area. I sure could have used a booklet like that when I moved from home. It would be nice to have a guide to parish schools and Catholic high school, and even colleges, that adhere to the Magisterium. It would have saved me many arguments with my older kids when they came home from school spouting nonsense about the Faith. Lucky for me, I finally discovered homeschooling!
Margaret Ellen 👍
 
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Crusader:
Not to be overly controversial, but it’s too bad that a highly respected, non-profit organization couldn’t be formed whose sole purpose was to report on the quality of Masses being celebrated within the USA.
What’s stopping you from doing it? 🙂

I’d love to see a Good Masskeeping seal of Approval 🙂
 
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BobCatholic:
What’s stopping you from doing it? 🙂

I’d love to see a Good Masskeeping seal of Approval 🙂
To be quite honest, I don’t really know of anyone (outside of Pope JPII) in this world that has the stature to launch and nurture something like this.

Certainly none of the clergy in the USA. It would have to be far, far beyond reproach and I’m sure it would take a decade to correctly establish.

Thinking about this a bit more, I think the US Bishops would fight its formation with everything they had in their arsenal. Just look at the caliber of people on the National Review Board, and look how they were treated.

Still, it would be an awesome tool to drive honest renewal within the Church in the USA.
 
What are you going to to show up with a checklist :ehh: :confused:

I think this is a terrible idea. While liturgical abuse is regrettable and annoying, please remember we are still attending the most awesome event in the universe.
 
I can see both sides of this argument. I think that it is easy to get caught up in the details and lose sight of the purpose. On the other hand, until I began attending the parish I currently attend, I didn’t even realize the value of liturgy and liturgical adherence. I feel I am incredibly blessed to have found my current parish, which through the grace of God has been blessed with three priests, one of whom is solely dedicated to liturgical adherence, but I was also blessed previously to have a wonderful parish that while it might have been poor, with one priest serving two churches rather than three priests serving one, and therefore not liturgically perfect, kept me attending Catholic Mass for twenty five years. All of them serve a purpose, all of them bless us.

I think in these discussions it is important to bear in mind how these violations are occurring. Are they occurring because of a lack of reverence or a lack of resources. It is one thing to be discouraged and up in arms because of a lack of reverence on the part of congregation or especially the priest or servers, but it is something else to be so caught up in the details of exactly how things are to be done that we ourselves are not showing proper reverence for the presence of our Lord.
 
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cmom:
What are you going to to show up with a checklist :ehh: :confused:

I think this is a terrible idea. While liturgical abuse is regrettable and annoying, please remember we are still attending the most awesome event in the universe.
The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the source, center and summit of our Catholic Christian faith. That’s precisely why it needs to be celebrated in a manner directed by the Church.

Auditing Masses might offend you, but I actually think a bit of quality assurance would go a long way in helping to rid the Church of liurgical abuse.

I enjy reading the Roamin’ Catholic for his review of different parishes in the Los Angeles Archdiocese… losangelesmission.com/ed/roamincatholic/
While I would not follow his method of reporting (I would want something more standardized and quantitative), the report would provide largely the same utility to would-be attendees.
 
I saw a Web site recently where the guy visited a new church every single Sunday and kept a sort of scorecard, listing hymns, orthodoxy of the rubrics, etc. This guy was serious, although I hope he attended a separate Mass to worship because there is no way he could “keep score” and worship God at the same time. He has been doing this “service” for years, and in my opinion, after reading his snarky comments, he didn’t get a whole lot out of the Masses.

'thann

EDIT: Ah there – someone posted the site.
 
Fifty years ago, such an idea would have shocked 99.99% of all Catholics world-wide, because such a device was not needed. Masses everywhere were uniform in prayer and rubrics throughout the world. This was the result of Pope St. Pius V in 1570 issuing the encyclical, Quo Primum. After the massive upheaval of the protestant revolt, many bishops and priests were swayed into “variations” and “improvements” to the Mass and other liturgical practices. The Council of Trent said. “Enough!” St. Pius V worked hard with the most learned men of the Church. To quote from that encyclical:

“…they have restored the Missal itself to the original form and rite of the holy Fathers…We commanded that the finished product be printed and published… and thus, priests would know which prayers to use and which rites and ceremonies they were required to observe from now on…This ordinance applies henceforth, now, and forever…We order them in virtue of holy obediance to chant or to read the Mass according to the rite and manner and norm herewith laid down by Us and, hereafter, to discontinue and completely discard all other rubrics and rites of other missals…”

There were provisions for some exceptions to specific rites that had been approved and in continuous use for more than 200 years. This was called in recent years the “Tridentine” Mass. It remained the uniform and universal Mass of the Roman Catholic Church for almost 400 years. It was NOT a new Mass in 1570, it was the restoration of the pre-eminent Mass used for centuries. It brought about a sensational unification of the Church over these past four centuries. It was nullified by the Novus Ordo of Pope Paul VI, and the results have been devastating.

What is lacking is not a lay organization of Mass-Watchers (although under present circumstances that would be better than nothing), we need a similar restoration as implemented by Saint Pius V, and the re-installatrion of papal discipline to condemn the heresies, blasphemies, apostacies, and other abominations that are and have been running rampant in the absence of that discipline.
 
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GeorgeCooney:
… What is lacking is not a lay organization of Mass-Watchers (although under present circumstances that would be better than nothing), we need a similar restoration as implemented by Saint Pius V, and the re-installatrion of papal discipline to condemn the heresies, blasphemies, apostacies, and other abominations that are and have been running rampant in the absence of that discipline.
I agree about the lay organization. To be blunt, given the past performance of other such groups, it would be destined to fail.

I’m not sure if Pope John Paul II really has the ability (vs. authority) in a practical (vs. theoretical ) sense to truly eradicate abuses from the liturgy worldwide. We have the Sacramentary, the GIRM, Ecclesia de Eucharista and *Redemptionis Sacramentum, *yet we still have abuse. It’s crazy.

Obviously the Pope could crack down to some degree (which he already is doing), but the lack of resources and threat of schism (real or imagined) might scare even the most committed.

The bottom line is this. If the bishops of today followed JPII as the bishops of yesteryear followed Pope Pius V, there would be no liturgical abuses given the work Pope JPII has already done.
 
"It remained the uniform and universal Mass of the Roman Catholic Church for almost 400 years. It was NOT a new Mass in 1570, it was the restoration of the pre-eminent Mass used for centuries. It brought about a sensational unification of the Church over these past four centuries. "
Code:
Actually this is not exactly true. The Mass certainly did not remain unchanged for 400 years. The Mass was actually altered 40 years after QP was issued. It was altered several times after that.
Masses are not something preserved in the Vatican freezer ( a quote from Cardinal Arinze) They are living treasures and need renewal.
 
It’s tempting to want to “certify the Mass” but wouldn’t that in itself be controversial?
 
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ElaineMomNC:
It’s tempting to want to “certify the Mass” but wouldn’t that in itself be controversial?
Sure it would. Just imagine the resistance from the US bishops.

Keep in mind that the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass does not need to be certified! Only those who celerbrate it, and only the facilities that house the celebration would benefit from ceritification.
 
After reading about some of the liturgical abuses endured by others, I’m really beginning to think thee needs to be some sort of certification process.

It simply seems like too many bishop and priests do as they wish, and to heck with what the Church directs.
 
I can see where a scorecard system would be frowned upon by many bishops and perhaps rightly so.

I see no problem if someone wanted to start a site where people could post their POSITIVE experiences at different parishs. The focus on listing “good” liturgies would remove the temptation to turn the site into a place to bash parishes and priests.

It could be just a simple bulletin board where people could post things like:

“St. John the Apostle: Very nice mass. Priest seems very reverent and follows the GIRM closely. Cantor wasn’t great but the song selection was nice.” (maybe even leave out the comment on the cantor?)

Just simple notes like the above could really help those who are looking for a liturgically correct mass in their area without forcing them to attend masses all over the place.

So, how about it Karl?

A simple place to post positive-only notes. Anything negative can be deleted by the moderators. Maybe a forum called Parish recommendations. Each thread could be under the name of a state. Someone who is looking can just go to his state and check for recommendations.
 
The problem with any certification process is that the only people/groups with the authority and jurisdiction would be the diocesan bishop and the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments.
 
I’d attend and rate every parish in my city if I had a car (don’t get my license 'til December.)

I would keep the rating to the liturgy itself (leaving things out like the cantor’s singing quality.) Negative reviews would, in my opinion, drive priests and bishops into cleaning their act up.
 
Why not pool our funds, buy a domain online and run GoodMasskeeping.com, where we could post our audits by diocese? Doesn’t cost much to get some webspace and a domain… and if we really wanted to save money, one of us could serve it out of his home or office. I’m not much of a computer genius but I know how to start, run, and maintain an SQL databse and stuff… and I have plenty of friends who can handle the more complicated aspects of keeping the site going. At least the laity will be able to see what’s going on at parishes in their diocese, and the demographic shifts as people flock from one parish to another might finally get the bishop’s attention. This is so cooooool :clapping:
 
If the bishops were doing their job this wouldn’t even be thought of.
 
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spetreopn:
The problem with any certification process is that the only people/groups with the authority and jurisdiction would be the diocesan bishop and the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments.
This is the rub. Without authority, you only have opinion and maybe dissent.

Still this is one of the most unique ideas I have seen on this forum. Crusader, you must have a vivid imagination. Thanks.
 
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