From a reader:
What do you think about the following announcement at Mass: “At the
rear of the church, please pick up a paper leaf and write on it what
you are thankful for this year. We will put all of them on a tree and
then carry that tree in the entrance procession at Mass on
What is this, my old seminary? … er um… kindergarten?
I think that sort of stun cheapens what Mass is about, erodes what the Eucharist (the Sacrament and Its celebration) is as both Sacrifice and Thanksgiving.
Surely some of you might be saying, “But Father! But Father! Shouldn’t people be bringing their expressions of thanksgiving to Mass? Isn’t that also part of why we go?”
I think that way of expressing thanks is a distraction. It refocuses the attention of the congregation on itself in misdirected sentimentalism. For example, who will pay attention to the processional Cross once that sort thing is being hauled in, probably by a child. How cute!
I am not against this sort of thing outside of Mass. Maybe they should plan something during the coffee and donuts?