Scientists experiment on Sedevacantist, determine stress from Novus Ordo

From the amusing Eye of the Tiber:

Scientists Test Effects of Novus Ordo On Longtime Sedevacantist

Los Angeles, CA–Attempting to explain the physical and emotional toll that an average Sedevacantist would endure during a Novus Ordo, students at UCLA have recently begun tests on 54-year-old Sedevacantist John Weiss of Glendale, California. ”Thus far the results have been quite fascinating,” Head of the Department of Sciences at UCLA Dr. William Manders told Eye of the Tiber. “We began by strapping Mr. Weiss in a pew beside a man wearing shorts. After placing eye clips over his eyes to keep his lids from shutting, we had a woman wearing a tanktop sit directly in front of him. You could immediately see that Mr. Weiss was beginning to sweat and was becoming extremely anxious…almost agitated.”

With the help of the UCLA Theatre Department, Manders began a battery of tests on Weiss, which included a staged Novus Ordo. “It appears as though the moment Mr. Weiss runs across anything remotely sentimental during the Mass, such as a smile on the a priest’s face, his heart rate begins to rise and he begins to mutter what seem to be bitter remarks. At one point Mr. Weiss became quite physical when one of our mock parishioners went to hold his hand during the Our Father. Luckily, we already had placed a taser collar on him, which we were quick to use.”

One department faculty member said she became worried for the “poor soul” when the mock congregation, led by a bearded, ponytailed guitarist, began to sing One Bread, One Body. “He was beginning to twitch for goodness sakes, and I knew then that that was about as much as I could endure. By the time I left he was foaming at the mouth. Don’t they have sedevacantist mice they could test on?”

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  1. Finally, an Eye of the Tiber that’s clearly not a spoof! Just a straightforward factual description of a normal faithful Catholic’s natural reaction to what’s has been inflicted on so many in recent decades.

  2. Sword40 says:

    Amen, Henry. Amen!

  3. JLCG says:

    You guys come to believe your own propaganda. Good recipe for perpetual unhappiness.
    I just came back from a penitential service. A deacon read from Scripture then had a short concise and precise explanation on why we were there. Then we scattered to different points of the temple. Even our bishop was there listening to the penitents. About a hundred of us.
    There were five or six priests also.
    It was perfect.
    Our masses are first rate, simple dignified.
    The Church is plying the turbulent waves of the present diabolical age without sinking and without taking water.
    I know there are many that would like her to fail so as to “justify” their conceptions. It does not happen, it won’t happen.
    So get over it.

    The Bitter Fruit Award

  4. Athelstan says:

    Sedevacantists? Heck, you can get that reaction most regulars at diocesan TLMs.

  5. Gratias says:

    Well, there is One Bread, One Body, and then there is Taste and See. Why can’t we all just hold hands?

  6. Legisperitus says:

    It’s an illustration of dropping the frog directly into the boiling water.

    No reason why it needs to be a sedevacantist frog, though.

  7. PatriciusOenus says:

    ^ ditto

  8. Trad Catholic Girl says:

    Sadly, I don’t think the scenario presented above is that far-fetched. Recently, I heard a story that several behavioral scientists collaborated on a scientific study involving an individual suffering from a mild case of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study involved using lay people to act out traumatic events over a 18-month period to create varying levels of stress in order to determine the nature, level, and extent of the individual’s PTSD. The “stress tests” inflicted on this individual were quite cruel, and resulted in worsening of the PTSD. The most alarming part was that they subjected the poor man to this “study” without his knowledge or approval.

  9. bwfackler says:

    and surprisingly that ever reputable source is reporting this as an real story

  10. APX says:

    @Trad Catholic Girl

    I don’t think this is too far off either. I remember the first OF Mass I attended at my home parish after spending Easter and Lent attending the EF Mass before moving home. Our parish has this anything goes mentality, or as former Bp. Remi De Roo commented, “really implemented what the Council meant by the Spirit of Vatican II”. I started having chest pains, and felt like I couldn’t breath. I thought it was a heart attack, but no, it was “stress-induced anxiety” according to the doctor.

    I had a similar reaction on Pentecost Sunday when the deacon invited someone up into the sanctuary with his saxophone during the homily to accompany him with his guitar while he lead the congregation in a sing-along to some song he wrote about the Holy Spirit.

    It happened again last Christmas during Midnight Mass with the Bishop. Not anything he did, as he’s pretty orthodox and appreciative of liturgical reverence, but during the blessing of the creche, when the deacon and priest leading the choir started singing a re-write of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah, I got this sharp stabbing pain in my ribs causing me to keel over.

    I seem to have an acute reaction of stress-induced anxiety to irreverence during Mass. I will continue to “offer it up” as directed.

  11. anilwang says:

    While it’s obviously extreme to have your heart racing when there’s “a smile on the a priest’s face”, I’ll agree that liturgical abuses will cause a reaction in anyone who cares about the mass.

    The new corrected translation has definitely helped. Before the corrected translation, the priests at the NO daily mass I attended would omit some of the rubrics such as the chest beating during the confiteor. It bothered me so much that I realized I was no longer focusing on God but on the sins of others, so I started closing my eyes during such prayers so I could see God more clearly and mentally fixing the incorrect spoken rubrics so I could hear God more clearly. It worked.

    Thankfully, I no longer need to do that too often since the corrected translation, but I can definitely sympathize with the imaginary Eye of the Tiber test subject.

  12. SPWang says:

    Hilarious! Whats good about it is that this scenario can be used both ways. Imagine nuns on the bus having to endure a TLM!

  13. mamajen says:

    I have no idea what JLCG was even talking about.

    It can be a real challenge bearing less than optimal happenings at mass, but as I always tell myself if someone is doing something that seems dumb, “at least they’re here.” If we get so devoted to a specific way of doing things that we can’t satisfy our obligation at a different parish without having a nervous breakdown, something is terribly wrong. (Yes, I know it was satire, but as others have said, not very far-fetched!).

  14. StWinefride says:

    JLCG was referring to the “pharisaical” attitude of a lot of Traditional Catholics.

    A priest once said to me:

    You know your Catechism, but do you know your Gospel?

    That hurt at the time because it was delivered not too kindly, but he is right and I have never forgotten the “lesson”.

  15. MichaelJ says:

    JLCG brings up an interesting issue that I’ve often been curious about. I have no idea if he or she falls into this category, but why is it that the near universal “talking points” among those who ardently support the OF (and dislike the EF) include a statement like: “Our Masses are always dignified, reverent and spiritually uplifting”?
    I have my own theories, among which include a skewed perspective on my part, but I’d be interested in hearing what others think.

  16. PA mom says:

    They left out the part where he is forced to look at the “Breaking Bread” hymnal cover, which is a hideous deconstructionist smearing of paint intended to convey Our Lord at the Last Supper.
    I do not know how I am going to make it through a year of wincing every time I pick it up (with two smaller children, I do a LOT of picking it up).
    It is as if Beauty itself actually offends them.

  17. beez says:

    I read this at Eye of the Tiber, and I had a chuckle. Although, there is one thing about this and the article he wrote about Extraordinary Ministers that bothers me a little bit.

    You see, I’m a newly ordained priest (6 months) and, frankly, there are days when the fact that I am a priest once again hits me like a ton of bricks. (As older priests tell me, “it takes time for the psychology to catch up with the ontology.”) The truth is, whenever that happens, I know I just start grinning.

    Also, whenever I am privileged to celebrate Mass, I just feel a great joy at what God has given us, through the hands of a bozo like me. Little children accompanying their parents, trying there best to be reverent (and often failing with the beautiful innocence of a 2-4 year old), and sinners seeking to find healing in Christ’s gift of self just makes me smile. Not a big, goofy, toothy grin, but the smile of satisfaction that God’s love overcomes everything else.

    Many saints, I’m sure, have said, “God save us from dour priests.” I feel the same way. I celebrate a reverent Mass, trying desperately to never deviate from the text or the rubrics. But the Mass is a foretaste of heaven, and heaven is a joyful place. If I must be serious, I prefer a joyful seriousness that conveys to the world, “I’m a redeemed sinner, and through Jesus Christ, you can be too.” That’s the way to draw visitors and non-Catholics into the fold: reverence and joy! Dour reverence appeals to no one.

    Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m secretly an NCR, Spirit of Vatican II priest and I just don’t know it. I love a reverent Mass, I don’t care for “One Bread, One Body,” I despise “I am the Bread of Life”, but I love being a priest; it makes me joyful, and the joy makes me smile. I don’t think I can stop and I don’t think I can apologize for that.

  18. Legisperitus says:

    PA mom: The Heresy of Formlessness. :)

  19. Legisperitus says:

    beez: Thank you for answering your vocation with joy!

    I once spoke with an 84-year-old Monsignor who said he still had days when he woke up and thought, “What, me a priest?” :)

  20. Joe in Canada says:

    beez, may God bless your ministry.
    The question that I started asking myself, after several years as a priest, was “who am I talking to?” I had found myself starting to “interpret” the words of the Eucharist prayer for the congregation, and I realized “I’m talking to God, not them.” That made a significant interior difference for me.
    So I took the comment about a smiling priest in the same way. Who is he smiling at? Is there a reason for him to be smiling at the congregation? I don’t think anyone would mind if a priest said the Eucharistic prayer joyfully, if he is clearly praying to God the Father.

  21. jarhead462 says:

    That was very funny, but as some have posted, sometimes not far from reality.
    beez: I would also like to thank you for your joy, and know that I will pray for you, as you begin your vocation. BTW, when you celebrate the Mass Ad Orientem, no one can see you smile ;)

    Semper Fi!

  22. Andkaras says:

    Does joy always have to manifest itself in the form of smiling? For some cultures ,a poker face is the norm,like american Indians and some regions around the Netherlands .In some cultures even blatant eye contact is rude. You can’t always see joy . Some don’t possess the physical facial muscles to look happy all the time but instead look rather dour even when perfectly joyous inside.How many of us on skype have ,upon seeing ourselves will attempt to make ourselves appear more…winsome perhaps ? Facial expression is a learned behavior after all.Joy is simply not always obvious . As with all things ,look to the cross.

  23. Imrahil says:

    Dear @St. Winifrede, I can understand that that hurt at the time!

    While of course your humility is to be appreciated — still (from afar) I’d think this sort of rebuke problematic…

    Of course, in the actual situation one is seldom quick-witted. In the face of one’s superior such as the priest is it is even more difficult. But a statement such as this might bring me to the questions
    – shall I forget my Catechism because knowing too little of the Gospel I’m not dignified enough to know of it?
    – what precisely does knowing one’s Gospel mean? having read it? knowing some of it by heart, or at least the style, and a bit of where to find what? fulfilling this or that of moral laws? smiling? and if the latter, could you please stop scolding me for a thing I cannot help, and instead give me clear directives about how to gain a smile?

  24. Will D. says:

    They left out the part where he is forced to look at the “Breaking Bread” hymnal cover, which is a hideous deconstructionist smearing of paint intended to convey Our Lord at the Last Supper.

    It’s quite the masterpiece, isn’t it? (If you haven’t had the pleasure of gazing at it, you can see the cover here.)
    Fortunately, our parish has the ugly navy blue vinyl slip covers for “Bustin’ Bread,” so I don’t generally see the actual cover. And since our music selections are nearly always awful, some weeks, I never pull the thing out of the rack at all.

  25. StWinefride says:

    Dear @Imrahil, I think what the (modern) priest meant by “Gospel” was the message of mercy and forgiveness that it contains. Jesus came for sinners.

    He has sort of got a point that Traditionalists, myself included, can sometimes appear to place the letter of the law above the spirit, however phrasing it in such a way was incorrect, hurtful and didn’t invite discussion. In any case, I have forgiven him!

  26. PA mom says:

    Will D- now I can add dreamy visions of hymnal covers to my Christmas wish list. Think someone would mind if I taped over those in my row with the face of a couple of Christmas cards? Any one would do. Quite confident that they could not sell a card that looked half as bad as that.

  27. Minnesotan from Florida says:

    I do not know on my own but have been told by a person I believe to be truthful and reliable that “One Bread, One Body” was part of the worship at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass celebrated outdoors at a farm in Iowa by His Holiness the Pope, Blessed John Paul II.

  28. The Cobbler says:

    “Don’t they have sedevacantist mice they could test on?”
    Reminds me of the adage that a drug is a substance that when injected into a lab rat produces a scientific report.

    “You know your Catechism, but do you know your Gospel?”
    I’d have told him that’s not quite how James goes.

    “It is as if Beauty itself actually offends them.”
    A matter of weeks before my wedding, I happened to notice for the first time the marble (or at least faux marble) pillars in the church in which it was to be ministered (pronounce that the fancy Elizabethan way even though I’m too lazy to make the little mark appear over the final e). I was confused for a moment because I had been there many times and not noticed them before. Had there not been pillars prior to that point in time, I wondered? Then I looked around and saw a couple pillars that had not been renovated (or dewreckovated, really): they were not only painted a bland shade of white but, what’s more, had the texture of basement wall paint (indeed, that’s certainly what it was). I wish I could say it was creepy, or bewildering, or anything other than what I must say it was to realize that the pillars had, at some point, been deliberately made ugly. It was the same shocked realization that we were under attack (or in this case had survived an attack) that some folks had when it dawned on them shortly before noon on September 11th that planes had not crashed into towers on accident. It almost feels wrong to put it that way — what’s the prettiness of Church architecture next to thousand of lives? — but I cannot think of anything else to compare it to, any other experience in my lifetime where people in this culture said, “Holy crap, we’ve been attacked!” Maybe we’re blessed to live usually in such ignorance; or maybe the beauty of the Church is important to souls, any one of which is more important in its eternity than all the earthly lives in history (including its own).

  29. The Cobbler says:

    Sorry, I guess that got way more serious than this post was meant for.

  30. NoraLee9 says:

    Cobbler, we WERE attacked, by iconoclasts, and others of their ilk. Look through history. It wasn’t the first time, either. It’s not so bad an analogy. I think many more than 3,000 souls have been lost because of attacks on the faith, since 1965.

    As for September 11th. I figured out we were under attack at 9:02 AM, when I made the right hand turn out of Long Island City’s public parking garage just in time to see the second plane hit tower number 2. I don’t think it took so many of us until noon to figure it out.

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