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If ‘pop’ music brings kids into the pews, explain this

And then explain to me again why going against the express wishes of every Pope since Pius X is the only way we’ll interest kids.  These young men are from Goshen College – the precise age range being targeted by those who want to add guitars and drums to the Mass:

The young want a challenge – they want authentic Catholicism, to live a life of true holiness with all the beauty the Church has to offer.  We ought to do nothing less than give it to them.  All of it.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Orvis October 18, 2008, 2:52 pm

    First off, let me say I would buy a CD of these guys, or would go to a performance or love to have them sing at a Mass. That’s an amazing arrangement and rendition of the Ave Maria.
    I’m not quite sure whether you’re trying to say no or yes to so-called pop music – I’m guessing no. I’m hoping you’re just saying to promote the “classics” to this age, since they already know about pop music, which I’d agree with.
    I’m also not sure what you’re saying were the “express wishes” of all the recent Popes, but Pope John Paul II encouraged all forms of music in services, and that includes everything from chant to pop (assuming the text is appropriate, of course).
    I run a teen choir and their favorites are both the current stuff AND hymns from centuries past, latin and English. In other words, if it’s a well-WRITTEN song, then it’s worthy. The arrangement and delivery helps to reach them too, more than most liturgists believe, though you can’t just add drums to a song to make it attract teens.
    We used drums and percussion and electric guitar when the song called for it, but usually we just didn’t have the room or the player available or the part learned. “Praise Him with drums and dancing!” Heck, if we had a lyre…. 🙂
    And if you’re using these Goshen guys to prove a point that pop music has no place in the church (and it’s possible that you’re not), then you might ask THEM that, and check out their other videos – they do a rendition of Bill Withers’ “Lean On Me” right alongside “Were You There” and Billy Joel, as it should be (granted, that Billy Joel song is not a church text, but it shows their wide array of musical interests).
    And if it comes down to congregation leading, as wonderful as these guys and their arrangements are, and as prayerful as their delivery of it is, if you’re trying to get the congregation to join, then you’d have to do “Lean On Me” in its pop style, so it comes down to a MIX of it all…. so I agree with your quote at the end… “do nothing less than give it to them. All of it.”

  • ubipetrus October 18, 2008, 6:33 pm

    Excellent, excellent questions. So good in fact I felt it necessary to promote my response to a full post, here.

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