When one begins to study the Catholic Faith in depth, it is only natural that we learn more about the Mass (and rightfully so!). If we base our research on approved Church sources, we will eventually discover that there is an approved way to say Mass. We discover such documents as The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (aka “The GIRM”) and the Code of Canon Law. As our zeal for the Church begins to grow, we may notice that our parish priest may be celebrating Mass “differently”. He may be changing the words or omitting various parts of the Mass. We wonder…is this ok?
We decide to search the Internet to determine if these changes are acceptable. We find Church documents and message boards that confirm our suspicion …This is indeed a violation! Each time we attend Mass we start to analyze the priest’s every word and move. Our anger grows and we plan to print out the applicable copies of the GIRM and Canon Law and confront Father after Mass. We know that we’re right and we’re prepared to show him!
Before you do that, read this terrific blog entry by Fr. Philip Neri Powell. While I don’t know if I would draw out the process as far as he suggests, I do know that pride can be a serious problem in cases such as this. Sometimes we get so caught up in proving that we’re right that we forget what really takes place at Mass!
While there are cases of abuse that should be pursued, there is a “correct” way to proceed. This article offers some excellent advice…