Saturday, March 16, 2013
Choosing Not to Receive
I have a post over at the Catholic Stand blog (it was posted 2 weeks ago) – it’s basically a re-post of one I had here (“What Do We Do Now? Suffer with Him”).
There have been a number of comments, and some are pretty interesting. Many reacted to the notion that one may choose not to receive Holy Communion at a Mass that seems offensive. To them, it seems unthinkable to not receive Holy Communion because of the liturgical abuses one sees. Even a priest suggested that one should never skip Holy Communion, adding, “That would be madness. Even if the priest is dressed in a clown suit.” Hmmm.
Another commenter said:
Please don't ever get so upset with the presentation of the liturgy that you abstain from the Eucharist… If we're honest, criticism over modern vs. traditional Mass are very similar to criticism from those who say they don't attend Mass because they "don't get anything out of it". Both instances miss the point by setting the criteria of a successful liturgy with OUR satisfaction over God's.
No, I’m not talking about setting my own criteria of a “successful liturgy”. I explained in a comment of my own that it’s not a matter of liturgical “style”; it’s a matter of liturgical abuse. I am sure that Our Lord weeps over the abuses He is forced to view on a daily basis. It’s not about my satisfaction with the liturgy; it is always about God’s. The Novus Ordo can be celebrated reverently, but often it is not. When I am scandalized by liturgical abuse, I prefer not to receive Holy Communion in that situation, especially if the priest is doing or has done something egregiously out of order.
But the commenter objected again:
I truly believe that whenever we worship God with sincere and grateful hearts He is pleased. I don't believe there can be such a thing as "sloppy liturgy". It may be presumptuous on my part, but I don't think God gets upset with an occasional change in the "rubrics" which were established by the Church, because the Church itself is comprised of creative human beings.
Well, we may be creative human beings, but we are not allowed to create the liturgy spontaneously, as we did in the Assembly of God church I once attended! And when people think that we are free to tamper with the liturgy, we end up with abominations like the ones in the video I've embedded below. If this isn’t “sloppy liturgy”, I don’t know what is! Even if some of these folks are attending with "sincere and grateful hearts"...this "liturgy" is just plain wrong.