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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Want to Celebrate Pope Benedict's Visit?


Are you sitting home, excited about our beloved Pope Benedict's visit to America, wishing you could do something significant to celebrate his coming, but just don't know what it is?

Well, worry no more.

Why not start a Benedictine Revolution in your very own parish by starting a Gregorian Schola? Call it St. Benedict's Schola Cantorum. Post a notice in your parish bulletin and watch the young and very old come flocking.

Want to do something even more radical, make it a all MEN'S Gregorian Schola Cantorum! (Just wait and see how the lesbian nun in your parish gets her polyester pants in a twist over it. When she complains, tell her it is an effort to have the men in the parish get in touch with their inner women, and aving actual women in the schola would only impede the dynamic and process.)

Recently, a group did this at our own parish.

At first we only sang in the rectory, drinking very strong German beer and telling jokes about how the Jesuits don't how to sing because they are incapable of singing una voce. We laughed, we sang, we could all sense that something bigger than us was taking place.

Soon the pastor stumbled across our little fraternity and joined us. Next thing we knew, he was celebrating the Extraordinary Form of the Latin Rite in our parish with all male altar servers and us as the schola.

Women began showing up to mass with veils over their heads.

Children began to genuflect toward the tabernacle.

Soon, we were being asked to sing at the regular Sunday mass. Old parishioners began coming us to us with tears in their eyes saying, "We have been praying for so many years . . . now we can die knowing that the Faith lives on."

One Sunday, custom cushions appeared on the marble in front of the altar rail (that some how survived the 1970's but hasn't been used since). People began to use them and only receive communion on the tongue.

This past Lent, there was a rally in the parking lot where hundreds of parishioners brought their contraceptive pills, devices and condoms and threw them into a huge bonfire before getting into the confession line, all while the schola sang "Miserere mei, Deus."

Your parish could also join the Benedictine Revolution, but I hear you saying that you would like to take up the banner but you don't know how to read square notes, or how to get your hands on Gregorian Chant. Well, rest assured there is hope.

This June, The Parish Book of Chant will be published. Have a listen to this description by Jeffery Tucker, the editor of this revolutionary manual.

And if you really want to press ahead with this revolution, sign-up for the 2008 Sacred Music Colloquium. Believe it or not, it is actually being held at Loyola University's north shore campus at the recently renovated Madonna Della Strada (not a terrible renovation, but not too great either). I have even heard that some Jesuits will be attending!

Do something radical to celebrate Pope Benedict's visit - start a revolution in your parish!

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