This weekend parishioners at St. John the Evangelists Catholic Church in Gulfport, Mississippi celebrated their sixth year “International Celebration” Mass.
What is “International Celebration Mass” you ask? It’s a Mass with a procession of international flags, dancing children during Mass and our Lord’s altar draped in a world map.
What’s the point of such a Mass?
To celebrate the peoples diversity of course!
Move over Jesus, this Mass isn’t about you, it’s about US.
Look at us!
See how diverse we are!
See how we come together to celebrate how special we are!
See how we use words like “unite” and “diversity” and “come together” to divert attention from the fact that we have reduced you Jesus, to a mere excuse to gather at Church so we can celebrate how great we the people are!
See us celebrate US! See us celebrate how wonderfully diverse we all are!
See us NOT celebrating Jesus. :(
Once the guitar strumming and dancing is done, the diversity Mass is followed by a buffet of diverse food for all the diverse people to eat in order to complete the celebration of their diversity.
“Parishioners dressed in the attire depicting their background and carried flags from each country of origin represented at the church to begin the Mass. St. John's Church Choir, St. John's Hispanic Choir and the Vietnamese Martyrs Church Angels Choir of Biloxi provided music during the service. Children's groups from Vietnamese Martyrs and St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church performed ceremonial dances during the Mass as well. Coordinator of the event Vickie Tiner said South Mississippi is rich in other cultures and this is a way of celebrating those cultures.” –end quote-
What does parish priest Father Joseph Uko say about this Mass? He says, “the celebration highlights the differences and the one reason everyone comes together.”
Really Father? The “one reason everyone comes together” for Mass is to celebrate our own diversity?
God save us from priests like this!!
A reminder for those who think this sort of Mass is what the Church teaches…
Catholic Catechism on the Mass…
VI. The Paschal Banquet
1382 The Mass is at the same time, and inseparably, the sacrificial memorial in which the sacrifice of the cross is perpetuated and the sacred banquet of communion with the Lord's body and blood. But the celebration of the Eucharistic sacrifice is wholly directed toward the intimate union of the faithful with Christ through communion. To receive communion is to receive Christ himself who has offered himself for us.
1387 To prepare for worthy reception of this sacrament, the faithful should observe the fast required in their Church.218 Bodily demeanor (gestures, clothing) ought to convey the respect, solemnity, and joy of this moment when Christ becomes our guest.
Julie @ Connecticut Catholic Corner
Source & images: http://www.sunherald.com/2014/05/25/5600514/catholic-mass-celebrates-diversity.html?sp=/99/184/201/
Parish information: http://www.biloxidiocese.org/index.cfm?load=org&org=48
Vatican Catechism: http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P42.HTM