Monday, August 10, 2009

My Experience of a Gender-Neutral Mass

Well, not quite. A few months back I was attending Holy Mass at a Washington, DC local church. The place was a small, tastefully decorated, military chapel. The priest was orthodox and he celebrated the Eucharist “by the book.” He wasn’t the problem.

A young couple sat behind me and the young lady had this penchant of substituting “God” at every prayer where God was addressed as “Father” or referred to as “He.” Not only that, she would also inflect “God” in such a way to make it obvious that she was making the substitution on purpose and to make a point.

The church was small, and she was close enough for me to hear her and to disturb me. I pointed discreetly with my index finger at my right ear, resting my hand on my right cheek, and then I turned to her and looked at her in the eye and said nothing. It would have been in execrable taste if I had. I wanted her to get the point that I was listening to her and that she was disturbing me.

Yet, I can’t fail but to feel a bit guilty at not having said anything. The young lady probably had been led to her misguided behavior by some avant-garde academic bent on stamping out “male-genderism” from all things human. That the young lady in question chose the Liturgy to make her stance should not have come as a surprise, considering the environment we find ourselves today, but understanding her doesn’t mean that I excuse her behavior, or that I find her politically-correct substitutions any less grating.

So, young lady, if you happen to read this, or if you are someone who happens to agree with her, let me tell you that you offend me.

The Liturgy does not belong to you, nor is it an artifact which tenured academics and their misguided students can disfigure as they wish to push their pet causes. The Liturgy belongs to the Church and it has been handed down as such for a long, long time. It’s not your private property and you have no right to change it.

Furthermore, you disturbed my prayer and the prayers of others who want to pray with the Church, with the words given to the Church; you were not praying with the Church and by your emphatic behavior, caused a distraction and drew attention to yourself. I don’t care what you think, young lady, but the Liturgy is not about you and your misguided feminism. Next time, do pray with the Church, or pray outside.

I wonder how much longer we have to suffer these travesties before our shepherds “pastorally” put these Catholics, and their instigators, in their proper place.