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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Just a bit of Catholic Tuesday Trivia

Music has a way of getting into your head the way nothing else does. Have you ever heard a ten-year-old singing lewd lyrics, hardly even knowing what he's saying? I once broke a record album (remember those?), Purple Rain by Prince, that one of my children bought. I probably wouldn't have realized how bad it was if the lyrics hadn't been written on the outside of the record jacket.

The enemies of God have always recognized the power of music. Look at the satanic links in heavy metal and other hard rock. If you think that's a modern phenomenon, think again. the Arian heresy was one of the most devastating errors in the early Church. It taught that Christ was man and not God, that He was, in fact, a creature of the Father, not the Creator. An Arian slogan was, "There was when he was not."

The heresy took hold so quickly that St. Jerome said he woke up one day "to find that the whole world was Arian." One of the ways it spread so effectively like a plague bacillus was through music. A medieval collection of lives of the saints has this entry about Arianism and St. John Chrysostom's reaction to it:
The Arians, whose numbers were increasing, and who had a church outside the city, became so bold that one Sunday they pushed their way into John's own church, singing their hymns and antiphons, and shouting derisively: 'Look at the fools who believe that three make one!' Then John, fearing that the simple folk would be drawn into heresy, commanded the faithful to gather in the churches at night, to hear sermons and to sing hymns.
After Vatican II a number of questionable songs came into use in the Church. They emphasized the Mass as banquet instead of the sacrifice of Calvary. They stressed the "we" aspect of liturgy almost to the exclusion of worship. One, Gather Us In, became the source of numerous hilarious parodies. I don't know if the bad songs contributed to the two thirds of Catholics who don't believe in the Real Presence, but it certainly could be a factor in view of the experience of previous generations with the "teaching effect" of bad music.

So let's look for a return to beautiful Catholic music that teaches as well as lifts the mind and heart to God. But also remember how important music can be in apostolic work and look for more songs that celebrate life. They can help turn the culture of death around. And, folks, if your a grandparent like I am, don't expect the kids to like the same kind of music you do, and praise God for the song below even if it doesn't suit your taste. It speaks to the young.


Anonymous said...

As a grandmother you should be ashamed of yourself promoting having sex before marriage.
Didn't your priest tell you prostituting yourself is a mortal sin?
I'm sorry for your children and theirs, seeing the kind of education these poor ones obviously recieved.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

I'm baffled at your comment, Anonymous. How is encouraging pregnant girls not to have abortions promoting having sex before marriage? I taught all my children chastity, but we also took in unwed moms. Was that promoting sex before marriage? I urged all the girls to make a decision to do things God's way in the future. One, a fifteen year old, said she had to learn the truth the hard way.

What exactly made you interpret this post in such a strange way?