Jazz Mass?

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Perhaps the fine members of this board can fill me in on this one…

I have a friend of mine who sings in a choir for a parish here in town. She was asked to sing for a special mass for a young adults group here in town, and the mass was billed as a “Jazz Mass”. I was not able to attend (boo hoo), but found out they had a full jazz group, complete with drums and electric guitar. The mass music was written by Tim Whitmer, a jazz musician of minor repute here. The most heterodox element she described was a complete re-write of the Sanctus. Apparently there was some “mother-god” wording of some type. I am half-afraid to find out more, because I think I would be placed under the duty to raise a stink…

Should I raise a stink anyway???
Who knows any more? “Jazz Mass”? Is that Rite 1 or Rite 2 or Rite 3 or Rite 4? Is that in the 1962 Missal? Was it in Latin, English, or Tagalog? Did the local priest clear it with his bishop, or did he even care? Desperation seems to encourage almost any misbehavior, but I can tell you that popular music of that sort is forbidden. Not discouraged–forbidden. The priest was entirely wrong to produce a jazz mass. O.t.o.h., a worship service–novena (rather long), evensong, or devotion, would have been quite alright, I reckon.
I don’t know if there is a “standard” jazz mass. At the Religious Education Congress put on by Cardinal Mahoney, they have at least one “Liturgy” each day. (I don’t know how, since it is held at the Anaheim convention center.)
I won’t attend it, put people that I know who do go, say they have seen a jazz mass there. One person said that the only thing missing were the drinks and cigarettes.
I think you should approach the pastor with your concerns, but don’t expect to get very far. Usually, when I hear stories of this kind, people have been attacked by the priest, no matter how polite they are. Be prepared for rudeness AND for the pastor to attack you personally and try to avoid answering your questions. Stick to the subject at hand; tell him that you heard that this and that went on and you were concerned. My suggestion is that if your priest produces this type of monstrosity again, you attend it so that you can send your bishop a detailed account of the affair.
I think the very nature of jazz with its emphasis on individual improvisation, would be too distracting from the mass itself. I say this even though I am passionate about jazz.

You might want to listen to Paul Horn’s Jazz Suite on the Mass which was recorded in 1964.

Though not a mass, you might also want to listen to Duke Ellington’s first Concert of Sacred Music (1966).

Both will be hard to find but worth it if you can.
:cool: Sounds cool, baby. Hope it has incense. Lots and lots of incense. :cool:
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