Okay, so today is the day we decided to attend Mass at Holy Family Catholic Community. We awoke bright and early, for a Sunday, and left at 8:45. It is about a 3 minute drive, but the car moved slowly, as it cut through the frigid air. “We probably could have walked”, Sam said while he brushed dog hair off his dress coat, “but I think we should wait until it warms up a little”. I agreed with him, big time.
I noticed as we got out of the car that everyone was greeting one another. People seemed very friendly, all smiling and saying hello. This being the last Sunday of the Christmas season, the sanctuary was decorated and it was beautiful. There was an immersion Baptismal pool in the center aisle in front of the altar. It was surrounded by velvet ropes to avert disaster.
Sam wanted to sit near the back so we chose our pew and had a seat. There were two LARGE video screens on either side of the altar where upcoming events were being displayed. I was interested in the music liturgy, so I wanted to scope out the choir. For a parish of this size, it did not seem too big… and no one was wearing a choir robe. Hmmm, perhaps this is the contemporary service. You know, the not so traditional mass. Wrong. It seems that this particular Catholic Church is truly “New Age” of which I did not think there was any such thing.
Before the readings, Father asked if there were any new people in the congregation. We looked around, dreading what was coming next, and sure enough, he asked the newbies to stand. I shot a glance at Sam and he said go ahead, so I did, and guess what? You got it, only me. I nervously smiled at everyone and gave a half-wave and quickly sat down. There may have been applause, don’t know, don’t care. So much for no one looking at me…Father welcomed me and hoped I felt at home there. That’s right, Sam did not stand. Oh well, what the hell……
As Mass continued, we felt as if we were at some sort of performance. There was applause for the homily (first time experience for us), but I must admit it was worthy of it. There was a lady doing sign language for the whole service, including the songs. ( Her arms must be killing her.)
The music was very joyful, but very contemporary. I thought perhaps we were in a Christian Contemporary music infomercial. I waited for Michael W. Smith to make an appearance. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a lot of those songs, but not at Mass. You know how I always save a place for Dad at Mass? Well let me just say, I don’t think he will come to my mind here.
On our way out, we stopped at the “welcome desk” to ask if all the masses were this contemporary and they responded that yes they pretty much were. So we are off to find a place where we will be a little more comfortable to worship. There is definitely a need for this type of liturgy in the church, as it is losing membership to mega-churches such as Willow Creek Community Church just around the corner in South Barrington. I am glad we all have choices.
Sing praise to the Lord for He is good.