Reason #4549 for Summorum Pontificum (A real hoot!)

A priest friend sent this.  I share it for your … edification.

One of the first things I thought of as I watched that is that the same crowd who like this stuff are the one’s who say that lace on a surplice suggests some kind of… you know…


This is how they do it at Berkeley.

Please, someone, download this before it is removed.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Lighter fare, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000 and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Is this stuff really still happening? Woodstock is over, the ’90s are over, time to turn the page and tell ourselves we’ll skip that chapter next time we read the story.

  2. Charles E Flynn says:

    Truly excruciating.

    Left to the reader as an exercise is whether this alleged liturgical dance is better or worse than having a woman substitute a reading from “Winnie the Pooh” for the gospel (an incident that occurred in the late 1960s or early 1970s).

    Remarkably, a priest who fell for a lot of late 1960s or early 1970s nonsense fired the woman in question. Sometimes, the Holy Spirit intervenes despite unfavorable circumstances.

  3. acardnal says:

    Whenever I think of liturgical music, I always think of Aaron Copeland. Doesn’t everyone? **sigh**

  4. vetusta ecclesia says:

    Looks more like the summer solstice at Stonehenge.

  5. By the way, that is the creepiest sanctuary I have ever seen. Wonder where the dungeon is, with Christians waiting to be led before the governor to renounce their faith?

  6. MargaretC says:

    I know some dancers, both modern and ballet. That ain’t dancing.

  7. Jamie says:

    Why are they using a massive brick for an altar. Why. That’s worse than the old alien one in St. Peter’s, Rome.

  8. nykash says:

    Am I ever glad I went to a Low Mass this morning.

    What is it about Holy Sacrifice of the Mass people don’t get?

  9. mamajen says:

    I just watched an episode of Star Trek, right?

  10. Langsey says:

    Say the Black, Do the Red, Dance the Pink

  11. Lynne says:

    Archbishop Piero Marini sees nothing wrong with this.

  12. Therese says:

    It’s a Newman Center, by the way. No tabernacle that I can see, thanks be to God, although they did bow toward…something. I’ll bet the Druids couldn’t do a better job. (Kind of a let-down when Father simply strolled up to the altar, but I suppose a procession would have been superfluous.)

    Let it die.

  13. Charles E Flynn says:

    I think that the entire concept of sacrifice is poorly understood by us.

    God does not need anything, and yet is is clear from the Old Testament that sacrifice is pleasing to Him, and that some sacrifices are more pleasing than others (Cain vs. Abel) . One particular sacrifice (Christ on the cross) can have eternal consequence and fruitfulness for all of us.

  14. NOOOO!!! Agggh It’s “Lord of the Dance” that the organ is playing!!! It makes my blood boil. I hate that song more than any other music, including “Gather Us IN”

  15. sanctus3 says:

    ‘When the cat’s away, the mice will play’. Archbishop Cordileone was already in the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and his replacement was not announced until May. Talk about adding to the ‘scourging at the pillar’!

  16. Charles E Flynn says:

    The general principal is that a song too easily parodied on a kazoo has no place at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

  17. LarryD says:

    Downloaded and saved.

  18. Scott W. says:

    Thank goodness. That 2008 video of the puppets at the CTA Mass was getting stale.

  19. johnnyDmunoz says:

    That church looks cold… Like a chapel on a Borg spaceship.

  20. Henry Belton says:

    Is that a church or the 1968 set of Planet of the Apes?

  21. johnnyDmunoz says:

    Also seen the first “Goddess Bless America” bumper sticker on the side of someone’s car. Pretty sweet!

  22. Hank Igitur says:

    Fairies at the bottom of the garden, literally!

  23. Pingback: In Honor Of Gay Pride Month… | Acts Of The Apostasy

  24. Will D. says:

    It’s “Lord of the Dance” that the organ is playing

    No, it’s Variations on a Shaker Melody from Appalachian Spring by Aaron Copeland. Both the original hymn and Copeland’s arrangement are worlds better than the goofy “Lord of the Dance.”
    If they’re going to steal the music from a great ballet, why not steal Martha Graham’s much better choreography as well?
    Also, why am I not the least surprised that, when the priest finally appeared, he was wearing a mis-matched stole over the chasuble?

  25. sunbreak says:

    Wow. Maybe if they flap those long sleeve things around and twirl enough they could wrap them around themselves like a straight jacket.
    I noticed that they put the white cloth on the floor before they put it on the altar. Lot of respect there, huh?

  26. tzard says:

    The acts of setting up the altar candles by the dancers has an elitist feeling to it. No ordinary people doing it – no clumsy altar boys (clumsy seminarians?) or old parishioners. You have faux “feeling” imposed on the action – and it comes across as fake.

    p.s. I thought the altar looks like a cored brick.

  27. rtjl says:

    Are you freaking kidding me? Is this a parody? Even a self parody? This can’t be real. Can it?

  28. tjmurphy says:

    Liturgical “dance” is such an oxymoron. It is neither liturgical nor dance.

    Did I Really see them place the altar cloth on the floor before placing it on the altar?

    I have see the top of an aspergillum fly off when used too hard, i can only imaging the damage if the thurible broke off the chain.

    I don’t like the style of vestments where the priest wears the stole over the chasuble, but was the priest really wearing a purple stole? And don’t even get me started on the glasses that were placed on the altar.

  29. bbmoe says:

    My eyes are bleeding. Random observations:

    It’s more fun to watch with no sound and hum a show tune.
    For a Newman Center, the troupe is a bit long in the tooth. Next up: Taps!
    Someone should tell these people how Isadora Duncan died. Next up: Taps!
    The last part where they “set the table”, I hummed “Be My Guest” from Beauty and the Beast.
    I’m going to show this to my husband right now so I’ll be off the hook for dinner.

  30. rtjl says:

    Good freaking grief!

  31. Kieninger says:

    I’m not sure whether that altar is supposed to look like a pair of stocks or the river-end of a sewer pipe.

    This kind of dancing is familiar to anyone who grew up around California hippies. This is exactly how many of them dance when they are dropping acid.

  32. yatzer says:

    Really? People actually attend this? It took the first 2 minutes before I realized that the big thing that looked like a construction item the builders forgot was the altar. What a travesty.

  33. RichR says:

    This video clearly exemplifies the Catholic idea of the redemptive value of suffering.


  34. HeatherPA says:

    I thank God every time I see one of these videos pop up that I have never had to see this in person.
    Who actually ever really thought this was a good idea to do??? Why????

  35. HeatherPA says:

    How does the congregation not laugh???

  36. Robbie says:

    In 1972, Pope Paul VI said the smoke of Satan had entered the Church. Clearly, the smoke is continuing to billow.

    What a disgrace. What an absolute disgrace. Here are the Bishops of San Francisco. Each, if they have a public email address, should be contacted about this so called Mass.

    Salvatore Joseph Cordileone, Archbishop of San Francisco
    William J. Justice, Auxiliary Bishop of San Francisco
    Robert W. McElroy, Auxiliary Bishop of San Francisco
    George Hugh Niederauer, Archbishop Emeritus of San Francisco
    John R. Quinn, Archbishop Emeritus of San Francisco
    Ignatius C. Wang, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of San Francisco

  37. HeatherPA says:

    One last question.
    Fr. Z.
    Does The Lord actually show up at these “Masses”? I know that some of the Saints have written about this subject… wondering what is thought.

  38. Scott W. says:

    We have to be careful laughing at this because your Gather hymnal AmChurch franchise is just one doofy liturgist and one doormat pastor away from this.

  39. Colonel Sponsz says:

    I have become so depressed since returning to the Church after 15ish years it’s….uh…depressing. From struggling through the watered down Mass I attend to this insane garbage makes me wonder if there actually is a Church for me. It makes me wonder if this is my experience then there must be many many more reurning\new Catholics who feel the same.


  40. Ben Kenobi says:

    Well, penance is finished for today. Thank you Father Z!

  41. McCall1981 says:

    As was pointed out, this is the Newman center, the place in Berkeley where this kind of horror gravitates to. Lest we condemn all of Berkeley because of this place, I wanted to point out that there is a fantastic group of Opus Dei priests not a quarter of a mile from the Newman center. Our new Bishop in Oakland is very good too, so hopefully this kind if thing wont be too common.

  42. Ben Kenobi says:

    “It makes me wonder if this is my experience then there must be many many more reurning\new Catholics who feel the same.”

    As a convert (all of about 8 years in), what bothers me most of all are protestant hymns with poor arrangements. That really grinds my gears. I’m sad that they are taking hymns that they think are popular. Then they do it wrong. I want to get up and do it for them and say. nononono – this is not how you play this song. THIS is how you play it.

  43. Charles E Flynn says:

    As the priest who welcomed me back to the Catholic Church after an absence of seventeen years said at the end of my confession, “The wonder is not that you left. The wonder is that you stayed as long as you did.” After a brief and naive inquiry about suitable reading material, I was told, “You need an Ignatius Press catalog.”

  44. APX says:

    But Father! But Father! Look how modestly they’re dressed! They’re dressed more modestly than most women at the TLM!

    Today was Modesty Sunday, and thus I present a perfect example of why it isn’t sufficient to just focus on modesty in dress. Modestly dressed? Yes. Modest in external actions? No.

    Anyways, I couldn’t watch past 1:46 as the video was starting to make me feel suicidal.

  45. Southern Baron says:

    Just as Christian rock is rarely good rock (and yes, I do think there is good rock, I realize this may make me a minority here), liturgical dance is rarely good dance. And Aaron Copland did write this as a ballet–and a good one it is. However, he certainly never meant it for this context, so why should we offend HIS sensibilities, much less our own, in creating such an odd hodgepodge? It is not so much that this is offensive, just that none of it makes sense.

  46. Clinton says:

    Through a supreme act of willpower I lasted to the 1:08 mark.

    I get the feeling that ‘liturgy’ like this exists because its promoters want the Mass to
    appear ridiculous. How else to explain it?

  47. OrthodoxChick says:

    I only made it to the 1:35 mark. Then I started having flashbacks. Now I’m suffering from PTSVIID, “Post-Traumatic Spirit of Vatican II Disorder”.

  48. Tom Piatak says:

    I defy anyone to watch this without bursting out in laughter.

  49. The worst thing is that so-called altar.

  50. Moro says:

    Fr. Fox beat me to it- the altar is truly hideous. Notice how the priest doesn’t come out until the end of the video? He comes across as being unnecessary and out of place. Talk about emasculation of the priesthood.

  51. Clinton says:

    Tom Piatak– that’s it exactly. I’m pretty sure the people behind this nonsense want to
    make the Mass the object of scorn. It is their way of laughing at us people in the pews.

  52. Charles E Flynn says:

    Does anyone know the purpose of the two large circular cutouts in the altar?

  53. contrarian says:

    Yeah, that looks about right.

  54. jhayes says:

    Here’s the parish webpage for the Newman Dancers Ministry

    Who is the Dance Ministry for?

    It is for members who want to practice liturgical dance as a form of prayer and service, as well as for the spiritual nourishment of Newman worshippers through an art form that embodies their prayers and lifts their hearts.

    It appears that everything in the video happened before Mass began. Notice that the celebrant appears only at the end of the clip.

  55. sciencemom says:

    Colonel Sponsz –
    I’m a convert, too, with only a few more years as a Catholic than you. Still not as many as I lived as a non-Catholic. Anyway, I just want to tell you: take heart! All of this rubbish just proves to me once again that the Church must be of Divine Institution. Otherwise, she would’ve sunk long ago under the weight of her members’ sins! Please see the following article, where Jen Fulwiler makes the point much better than I. She’s speaking of the abuse scandals, but the overarching point is the same. “Why the Scandals Increased My Faith in the Church”
    May Christ’s peace be with you always!

  56. Michelle F says:

    I also was wondering how the congregation (audience?) kept from laughing. Overall this thing is pitiful and painful, but that bird-like hand-flapping thing they did near the beginning was laugh-out-loud funny!

  57. acardnal says:

    “It appears that everything in the video happened before Mass began. Notice that the celebrant appears only at the end of the clip.”

    I don’t think this is happening before Mass begins. Rather, it appears to me that the dancers are bringing the Offertory gifts to the altar together with the chalice and so forth. Then the priest appear.

  58. AdIesumPerMariam says:

    *violently dry heaves*

    I made it without laughing, but I felt on the verge of sickness from the thirty second mark on.

    I just kept waiting for a Saint to appear from Heaven to yell at them… St. Pius X, St. Padre Pio, Venerable Fulton Sheen, St. Paul… ANYONE to stop this madness.

  59. benedetta says:

    But unless we can all get up in our leotards and liturgically dance, how does this match the active participation requirement of the spirit of VII?

    bbmoe: “Be Our Guest” LOL.

  60. xavier217 says:

    Acardinal, you are right. On YouTube, there’s a companion video with a gospel proclamation flouncearound.

  61. maryh says:

    I watched the whole clip. It is before Mass starts.
    First thought: this is entertainment, not prayer.
    Second thoughts: Druids, nymphs. They’re graceful.
    When one dancer started swinging the incense thing around like a mace, I started to worry that someone could get hurt. That looked dangerous.
    Some parts looked funny, but in general it didn’t seem funny to me.
    By the end, I was relieved to see it was being done before Mass, not during it.
    Main takeaway at the end of the clip – it looked like people setting the stage for a Shakespeare play.
    The one thing it never seemed was Catholic. It did have at least a feel of some Christianity because of the Shaker tune.

  62. benedetta says:

    And, that altar is so hideously ugly it’s just not worth dancing around.

  63. AdIesumPerMariam says:

    From Rorate’s report of this, it is at the offertory, as they have another dance from earlier in the mass…

  64. Indulgentiam says:

    One word –Reparation
    Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci must be looking down shaking their heads and sayin “see?told you so”
    Lord have mercy on me a miserable sinner.

  65. Tantum Ergo says:

    Ah yes… Berkeley, where Satan has his throne.

  66. Tantum Ergo says:

    Response to Charles E Flynn:
    “Does anyone know the purpose of the two large circular cutouts in the altar?”

    Why yes, they are the Time Portals. One goes to Stonehenge, and the other one to La-La-land.

  67. Carter says:

    Dear God
    Please help us! We are in BIG trouble down here :-(

  68. RafkasRoad says:

    Ben at comment #39,

    Amen brother!! As a former SDA then Evangelical Anglican prior to becoming a Maronite Catholic back in October 2011, I’d rather hear fingers being scraped down a blackboard than bad Catholic music ministers et al utterly torturing the congregation by making such a comprehensive botch of as you’ve said’ ‘supposed popular protestant worship songs’ that they ought to be banned under the Geneva convention!! What is it with the Catholic filter that turns everything to gruel????? Now, I’ve sung in church bands a’la Hillsong, with compitant musicians/singers whose theology, in a twist of irony, is likely far more Catholic than that of the dear folk taking part in this mush!! the Hillsong crowd, Casting Crowns, David Phelps and even Michael W. Smith would be squirming; more likely seasick…and re others experienced in dance who’ve pulled apart the liturgical dance offered here; only attended one (Evangelical) church that had it (SDA) and the woman was a trained classical ballerina and dance instructor who could likely do a far better job in her little toe (not that I’m condoning liturgical dance, mind you..) Oh, and re another commenter’s observations about dance style and dropping acid…has nobody mused that this could be possible??? or perhaps one needs it to make this fiasco bearable! If NO congregations want protestant worship music, quit while you’re ahead and let the real pros take care of it for you…or better still…stop the cultural cringe re the riches of your own (roman) rite and consider your wonderful, nourishing sacred cultural history as something not to be afraid of, ashamed of, or horrified by…take a leaf out of the Maronite rite’s experience and own your patrimony for heaven’s sake.

    #54,952 why I’m an Eastern rite Catholic!!!!!!!


    Aussie Maronite.

  69. Peggy R says:

    Oh, my!

    The walls look like Gen. Steel. The furnishings, I say that charitably, look like the furniture in Sigmund and the Sea Monsters’ family cave. (URL of photo too long! Just google.)

  70. Lin says:

    This must be where our pastor gets his ideas from. Around holidays, we get a theme for our mass.

  71. jjoy says:

    Ickus est. Anathema sit!

    So thankful I have a local EF to attend.

  72. eiggam says:

    The Easter Vigil has the Exaultet, the lighting of the Easter candle and so many wonderful things. The dance is like dumping gravy on a wedding cake.

  73. Di says:

    I feel like I am watching a part of the movie “Ruth” where they are getting ready to sacrifice a unblemished little girl to baal. All I can think to say about all of this is:
    “Father forgive them they know not what they do”.
    Let GOD arise,
    Let His enemies be scattered;
    Let all who hate Him flee before His Holy? Face.
    ~Psalm 67
    And when the ark of the Covenant was lifted up, Moses said: Arise, O Lord, and let thy enemies be scattered, and let them that hate thee, flee from before thy face.
    “Catholics were born for combat” (Are we going to sit back and do nothing? I for one am not!)
    ~Pope Leo XIII (Rerum Novarum May 15, 1891)
    Viva †Cristo Rey! Long live †Christ the King!
    Viva †Cristo Rey! Long live †Christ the King!
    Viva †Cristo Rey! Long live †Christ the King!

  74. Mark H. says:

    I’m mildly surprised that Jesus didn’t come down off that crucifix in the background to knock some sense into them.
    It’s happening with the whole Western Church unfortunately… What happened to reverence???
    I used to think it wasn’t that difficult… and then I see things like this.

  75. SouthTxMom says:

    Not sure if I should admit that I showed this to my two older kids. My ten-year-old (altar server) son let out a loud, pained ‘Oooohhhh’ when the man swung the thurible over his head. Both kids were rather horrified by it, which makes me think they have forgotten the hidden-tabernacle church of their younger years—Thanks be to God!

    To me, it looks like this church is underground. Is it the creepy walls and altar? Something seems very wrong and oppressive—not sure how else to describe it.

  76. pannw says:

    mamajen says:
    30 June 2013 at 5:54 pm

    I just watched an episode of Star Trek, right?

    That is exactly what I thought! I kept waiting for Vaal to start rumbling.

    And the altar looks like a giant melting brick. Hideous..

  77. MissOH says:

    Wow. I felt like it was a 60’s flashback with a Flinstones decor. My first thought was it was very “look at me” instead of focusing on the worship of God. Deo Gratias I do not have to be subject to that silliness.

  78. Mari Kate says:

    The Dance of the Faeries. Would give anything to read the thoughts of the priest as he tried to look dignified after all that.

  79. Charles E Flynn says:

    Thank you.

    “Many such journeys are possible”, but one does not expect them to begin at at a Roman Catholic altar.

  80. hoot is a good word for it.Needs to stop too.

  81. Marc says:

    I suppose we should be thankful they weren’t scantily dressed.

    The Archdiocese of Milwaukee is moving in that direction again as well. I had someone describe an “Arise” benediction as “like being at a WWF event!”. This is all part of a “New Evangelization” inspired by a book “Rebuilt” which promotes modern music and electronics in the Mass and (from my understanding) is inspired by Rick Warren’s megachurch.

  82. trespinos says:

    Oh my. When I visited the Newman Center chapel in Berkeley in 1962 it was a marvelously fusty place that any time-traveling Victorian Catholic Englishman might have felt at home in. What a come down.

  83. AttiaDS says:

    I feel sorry for that priest. He is not there for that, he was created for better than that and I think he knows it. That priest deserves better.

    Arrrrgh!!!!! WHY, I say, WHY aren’t these things ever synchronized?!!!! WHY do all sanctimonious prancers (it CANNOT be liturgical dance seeing as how dance ha NO place in the Liturgy) look like they all got together the night before and put something together and practiced what they came up with no more than four times. The choreography never aligns with the music and never EVER matches any other prancer. EVER!!! And, WHAT, in the name of all things holy and Nixon, is with the bare feet?!!! It’s always with the bare feet. Apparently Gaynor Minden and Capizio are unheard of.

    Men? No.

    And that’s another complaint I have: how come it’s ALWAYS bald middle aged men??? How come it’s NEVER a sculpted, well-toned you g man with a dancer’s body?!!! The men NEVER look like dancers…and they don’t dance like dancers, either.

    And the women. Smiling. It’s as though they don’t take this seriously.

    And the costumes!!! (I hope somebody realizes how incorrect that is to say. “Costumes.” At a Mass!!!). The costumes have that nuanced subtlety of a showgirl’s feather boa draped over gauze because the flowy magician’s assistant’s wardrobe for the levitating trick (the one where he uses a hula hoop) was to understated. White is NOT forgiving. Cue the hard-bodied male dancers!! Long story short, this is NOT true simplicity and by turning, turning, they’ve not come ’round right. Talk about throwing your hands up in the air and waiving them like you just don’t care.

    The guy with the thurible, were auditions held for that primary dancer part?

    This was so horrible the paper mâché said: we’re gonna skip this, that would make us look cheap.

    You do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself around, that’s what it’s all about!

    Seriously, I feel sorry for the altar Cristus there. Have I mentioned he’s better than this? Christ deserves better than this.

  84. Luvadoxi says:

    At first I thought it was supposed to be the empty tomb, but I was wondering “what are the two holes for”? I’m still wondering….

  85. Long-Skirts says:


    Who dem ladies
    Dressed in yellow
    Standin ‘neath
    That pulpit’s fellow –

    Dancin’ round
    From east to west
    They one up-man-ship

    Did I say man?
    I be a mess –
    They says they each
    A green-godess

    And all approved
    ‘Cause they know how
    To rock Her dome.

    Them cassocked boys
    They frown and glare
    At them there ladies
    Feets all bare.

    Then bishop smacks
    Upside they heads,
    “You cassocked boys
    Yo’ time is deads.

    Them yellow gals –
    They sure can sell
    Approved hand-baskets
    Made for…

    …just DO like they
    Is much behooved
    To shake yo booty
    And be approved!”

  86. Pingback: Evil, Be Thou My Good -

  87. Elizabeth D says:

    It’s the sacristy fairies!!!!! Clap if you believe in them!

    If you have never seen them creep out of the sacristy and magically float/prance around waving scarves and setting everything up, maybe you are not getting to Mass early enough.

  88. swissguardwannabe says:

    I am so sad when bishops and priests do not respect our faith; I wish Pope Francis would allow us to “crusade” against them… Without violence, of course. Also, I think every archdiocese should have a priest specially appointed to correct churches that have lost respect and their since of CATHOLICISM.

  89. TraditionalCatholicGirl says:


    Thank you Lord, for there being a FSSP chapel near my home.

  90. Matthew says:

    An altar rail would keep those weirdos at bay.

  91. lawoski says:

    At the start of the video, I thought the church had been invaded by the Hare Krishnas who frequent the Berkeley campus just a few blocks away. However, since the dancers in the video did not have Karatalas (finger cymbals) and did not dance as well as the Krishnas, I had to accept that the video was, in fact, from the Easter Vigil.

  92. Phil_NL says:

    Did someone omit to include a shot of the ‘lunatic asylum’ sign? or worse, did someone forgot to place this sign at Berkeley altogether?

    Really, that people have time for this nonsense is beyond me. But, looking at the silver lining: the sooner they gravitate to funkholes like these, the sooner the rest of the Church is rid of them. (Speeding up the biological solution).

  93. Phil_NL says:

    Mark H.,

    The Lord generally doesn’t come down to set things straight directly. But he does (or at least should) have some other tools at his disposal.

    I think Fr. Z. should make a new series of posts, titled WWDCD – “What would Don Camillo Do?”. I think we should even allow an innovation for that – liturigical boxing gloves – as a symbol.

  94. Mariana2 says:

    How fiendishly embarrassing!

    And I’m happy to report that I don’t know what lace on a surplice would suggest.

  95. Mariana2 says:

    The furniture and stuff remined me of this horror in Åggelby Nya Kyrka in Helsinki, a Lutheran church:

  96. Andreas says:

    I thought that I had seen this before. Indeed, watching this, I am reminded of those on-the-cheap “sword and sandle” films of the 50s. After abit of a YouTube search, my suspicions were confirmed: . Skip to 1:32 and see if you agree.

  97. jflare says:


    Hey! I HAVE that CD!
    I love the music, but for Mass????

    I fairly flipped when the guy started swinging the thurible around. I found myself thanking heaven that I could watch this from home on my PC, not where the camera fellow sat. Honestly, I half expected the thing to go flying!

    For some reason, I’ve never really “got” the whole idea of dancing. Now, granted, I’ve never actually been to a ballet or seen one on TV, but somehow..I struggle to see a point to it. ..Although I’ll admit to having a taste for watching the ice skating on the Olympics….weird.
    You know, this REALLY should be banned. I don’t see how this relates to Mass at all.
    If flapping some kind of fabric in the air constitutes prayer, then I’m “praying” whenever I wave my bed sheets around. Right?

  98. Kerry says:

    Di, “Arriba Christo Rey!”

  99. ocsousn says:

    Note the demeanor of the celebrant as he makes his entrance. It says it all!

  100. OrthodoxChick says:

    RafkasRoad/Aussie Maronite,

    Do you know of a good link or two that explains the Maronite church? I want to obtain the plenary indulgence for this Year of Faith by returning to the parish that I was Baptized in. Preferably, I would like to attend Mass there. However, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence has sold my home parish to the Maronites (Lebanese Maronites, rather than Greek, I believe). How do I find out if 1.) These Maronites are in union with Rome, and 2.) whether or not it is OK for me to receive Holy Communion at a Maronite Mass? On the plus side, the website for the “new” (to this parish location) Maronites says that they will be offering a Latin Mass every weekend in addition to their Maronite rite Masses. This has given me hope that the Latin Mass at this parish, in my own home church, will become an option for me as long as they are in union with Rome.

  101. akp1 says:

    I thought – perhaps it’s not a Catholic ‘Church’ so I searched to check, but oh my goodness, as you all knew it is (or is supposed to be). It is at times like this you can understand people joining the SSPX.
    The abuses we suffer are minimal compared to this stuff. It’s no wonder the world is in such a mess. Save the Liturgy, Save the World. PLEASE.

  102. tjg says:

    Competition time. The worst abuse in a church / Mass setting that I have seen is Stations of the Cross. The high school CCD class rendition, they had a projector with slides and background music. (I kid you not, it was Christina Aguilera.)

  103. OrthodoxChick –
    The Maronites are, I believe, the only Eastern rite that never broke from Rome. They are in union and one is permitted to receive Communion. I found this link from the USCCB on which Eastern rites are in full Communion:
    There is also more information at EWTN and at in the Catholic Encyclopedia.
    I’ve been raised Extraordinary Form and loved it, but when I had the opportunity to take a field trip to a Maronite Rite Mass I loved it – especially because the parish I went to in DC had a great choir and the Arabic chanting was beautiful. Some of the prayers they use, like the final prayer of the Mass, are so compelling and poetic. If I had to live somewhere with absolutely no access to EF, I would totally attend a Maronite parish!

  104. ocleirbj says:


    There is a natural human impulse to give honour to important life events/people/deities with ceremonies that take ordinary things such as food, clothing, movement, and music, and reserve, embellish and present them in an elevated way. The traditional Catholic way of approaching God at Mass involves all these things, and we believe that this is pleasing to Him, and is what He would have us do. The people in this video feel that need to honour and worship God, but since they have rejected the traditional forms of liturgy, they are thrown back on their own devices, and this is what they come up with. I thought with sadness while watching this that they really did intend it to be an appropriate offering of worship, and they probably wouldn’t understand our criticisms. If only they could see the beauty of the Mass as it is meant to be celebrated, they wouldn’t have to make up such dismal alternatives.

  105. chantgirl says:

    The smoke of Satan smells suspiciously like weed at Berkeley.

  106. RafkasRoad says:

    Dear Orthodox Chic at comment #100,

    All Maronites are in full union with Rome. the Marounite Origin is indeed Lebanese, but one does not need to have either direct ethnic ties to this nation, nor ties through marriage to participate in the beauty of Maronite Catholic Christianity.

    Our liturgical language is Aramaic. Scriptural readings, some prayers, sermon and some hymns will be in either Arabic or the language of the region in which the Maronite Church resides.
    We have a one year liturgical calendar, no ordinary time, and a slightly different annual cycle of Christian feasts and rememberances. A good Maronite mass will be almost entirely sung and is a marvellous thing to behold.

    roman rite (or other rite) Catholics can freely partake in Eucarist, confession and penance. Adult Baptism and confirmation aren’t a problem either, but one needs, through the Maronite parish priest, to be permitted by the local Maronite Bishop to be inducted into Catholicism…hey, they let me in so it can’t be too hard…:-)

    There can be some murmourings by old-timers at we non Lebanese joining, but this rite of the Catholic Church is increasingly attracting converts from non ethno-specific populations who are drawn to Christ beneath the cedar tree as it were. Our ‘Country Cousins’ are the Melkites, who are also fully in union with Rome, whose language is Biblical Greek, not Aramaic…we used to have an old melkite fellow come to English Rosary prayers with us at my local Maronite parish; accepted and embraced. There are other new Anglo folk who are fellowshipping with us at my parish, and accepted with by and large, open arms. Some Maronite Churches can be full of folks who come to ‘be seen’, but you get that at many, if not all churches; look up the Mass Schedule for the Maronite Church that has taken over your old home church and pay them a visit. You may encounter a cr*p worship song from time to time, but 99% of the mass is fabulous. Everything should be up on the data projector anyway, in English/Arabic, English/Arabic/Aramaic, so you’ll be able to follow on, or use the missel. See what their confession schedule is; we’re blessed; confession at all Sat and Sun services, First Friday, First Sat etc; one can get spoilled, but if this is so, come early because the lines can run out the door. You should have no probs confessing in English.

    A fantastic book to acquaint yourself with Maronite Spirituality is;

    ‘Captivated by Your Teachings
    Anthony J. Salim.

    it is a fantastic read!!

    If anyone here is close to a Maronite Church and sick of the antics at the local NO parish, drop in; guarantee there’ll be at the very least, fewer antics there.

    Oh, and we’re Mary-strong, so plenty of spiritual enrichment courtesy of Our Lady.


    Aussie Maronite.


  107. eiggam says:

    The altar is a massive stone. I think the holes are there to reduce the weight so that it could be moved to the church.

  108. RafkasRoad says:

    Commenter #106,


    What’s in the incense burner, doods??? Why can’t I shut ‘Purple haze’ from my mind at this point??? I promise, no more cheeky drug references!!!!


    Aussie Maronite.

  109. inara says:

    ElizabethD ~ our son Fortescue is plagued by sacristy fairies!! LOL He MC’s most Sundays & is trying hard to rid the sanctuary of these pests, but they are hard to remove once a colony is established. He is considering a very large pink fly-swatter, or maybe some swaths of chiffon over the sacristy doors to entangle them.

    As to frills on surplices, his server squad’s motto is “More lace…more grace!” :o)

  110. Charlotte Allen says:

    Hilarious! Aaron Copland must be spinning in his grave over the lousy choreography–and I won’t even get into the ludicrous costumes, except to ask: Why is waving scarves around a sine qua non for liturgical dance? I don’t understand why the churchgoers weren’t rolling on the floor. The one thing to be said is that this spectacle seems to have taken place before the Mass began, in contrast to during the Mass.

    I’ve been to Sunday Mass twice over the years at UC-Berkeley’s Newman Center. The church, an all-concrete Brutalist monstrosity from the late 1960s, has got to be the ugliest Catholic church I have ever seen. Everywhere you look is a sea of dull gray. The center has some photos of the church’s dedication in 1967. It actually didn’t look quite so awful then, because there was still a traditional crucifix, traditional sanctuary furnishings (including a nice-looking tabernacle), and traditional flower arrangements everywhere, which softened the maximum-security effect of the concrete walls. The many priests who participated in the liturgy wore traditional clerical attire, and the congregation was dressed up for Sunday Mass, the way congregations used to be. There were even some nuns in habits. All that is gone now.

    I couldn’t help but notice at the two Masses I attended that almost none of the churchgoers looked like college-age students. They were mostly middle-aged people doing the aggressively liberal-Catholic thing: not genuflecting, never kneeling, shouting “God’s!” when “His” was called for in the responses, giving dirty looks to people who didn’t conform. The music was singularly dreadful, with bongo drums aplenty and some sort of PowerPoint setup with the words of the hymns flashing on a screen behind the choir. My guess is that the Newman Center is the liberal-Catholic parish for the Berkeley-Oakland are. There’s a liberal-Catholic parish in every city (ours in DC is Holy Trinity near Georgetown), and the UC-Berkeley Newman Center probably occupies that ecological niche. Most UC-Berkeley students who are Catholic probably attend Mass elsewhere or (as is more likely) don’t go to Mass at all. Those dancers, for example, didn’t look like spring chickens to me.

  111. netokor says:

    I just LOVE the fat she-men prancing about like ethereal maidens of the unisex boutique paradise.

  112. “If any one saith, that the received and approved Rites of the Catholic Church, wont to be used in the solemn administration of the Sacraments, may be contemned, or without sin be omitted at pleasure by the Ministers, or be changed, by every Pastor of the Churches, into other new ones; let him be anathema.”- Ecumenical Council of Trent, Session VII, Canon XIII

    “If any one saith, that the Rite of the Roman Church, according to which a part of the canon and the words of consecration are pronounced in a low tone, is to be condemned; or, *that the Mass ought to be celebrated in the vulgar tongue only*; or, that water ought not to be mixed with the wine that is to be offered in the chalice, for that it is contrary to the institution of Christ; let him be anathema.”- Ecumenical Council of Trent, Session XXII, Canon IV

    Protestantism never goes away, does it? It’s the heresy that keeps on giving, and giving, and giving some more…

  113. StJude says:

    Ok… Jesus.. its time for you to come back.

  114. This is the kind of stuff that drives REAL men from the Church and keeps them away. What can we do to eliminate this?

  115. OrthodoxChick says:

    RafkasRoad/Aussie Maronite,

    Thank you SO much for the info! My home parish is a little too far away from my present residence for me to be able to attend weekly, but what you’ve said has reassured me about at least making my return visit for the Year of Faith. And the idea of being able to attend Mass in the language of Our Lord, well, that DOES sound breath-taking!

  116. The Masked Chicken says:

    “What can we do to eliminate this?”

    Make it a requirement that only people married within the Church can dance :) That should get rid of almost everybody.

    The Chicken

  117. Crucesignata says:

    I am not sure whether to laugh hysterically or cry uncontrollably… this is highly disturbing.

  118. maryh says:

    ocleirbj The people in this video feel that need to honour and worship God, but since they have rejected the traditional forms of liturgy, they are thrown back on their own devices, and this is what they come up with. I thought with sadness while watching this that they really did intend it to be an appropriate offering of worship, and they probably wouldn’t understand our criticisms.
    I agree with you completely.

  119. ghp95134 says:

    Color me “intolerant” …. but that was sooooo gay ….

    Now, color me “sad.”

  120. drea916 says:

    …and it makes Mass longer.
    Just do Mass-Mass. Then we can all go home.

  121. Charlotte Allen says:

    I watched it a second time with the sound on mute, and it was even funnier.

  122. fiat2011 says:

    There is hope for Berkeley and other college students!! FOCUS – The Fellowship of Catholic University Students will be beginning missionary work at the University of California- Berkeley in August 2013. Please pray for these missionaries and support them if you can –
    Currently there are 361 Missionaries on serving on 83 Campuses. Note that 355 Religious Vocations have been fostered through FOCUS since 1998!

  123. Thanks Chicken–good one!

  124. Anyone know how you can get emailed when someone replies to your post or when a new post is up? I used to before the last server crash a few months ago…???

  125. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Traditionally, two or three holes in an block of stone would only be found on a saint’s tomb, so that pilgrims could reach in through the holes and touch the relics of the martyr.

    I sorta doubt that’s the purpose at Berkeley, alas.

  126. Stumbler but trying says:

    Had I been there well, I would have “stumbled” out of there and quick! What an insult to our precious Lord Jesus, to the beauty of our faith, to the mystery of His splendor! Who conjured up this tripe? The Lord, Savior of the world, deserves only the BEST!

    It was a hard watch but one that had to be watched so I can trust to stay away from such pagan so-called pageantry to whomever they were worshipping. Was it the sun god? The moon nymphs? Those were men, yes? Hard to tell and I am trying to be nice. I thought I was made privy to some ancient pagan fertility rite with male and female cavorting about (badly so, too).

    No wonder we are in the mess we are in…Lord Jesus forgive us! Mother Mary, pray for us!

  127. wmeyer says:

    “FOCUS – The Fellowship of Catholic University Students will be beginning missionary work at the University of California- Berkeley in August 2013.”

    Wow! Hostile territory, to be sure.

  128. Bea says:

    127 comments so far.
    Must be a record of sorts.
    I was waiting for someone to trip on the “altar cloth”
    or get whacked on the head with the flying “thurible”
    Good grief, no applause?
    SOOO inspirational (to walk out and go elsewhere for Mass)

  129. Cathy says:

    Well, doesn’t that just make you want to poke your peepers out!

  130. Stumbler but trying says:

    “Good grief, no applause?”

    No applause but lots of clearing of the throats and coughing or was that gagging?

  131. Bea says:

    Charles E Flynn says:
    30 June 2013 at 8:04 pm
    Does anyone know the purpose of the two large circular cutouts in the altar?

    I suspect, Charles, that it is a guillotine “hole” through which the dancers must place their heads at the mercy of the laity present.

  132. B16generation says:

    They must have been inspired by our Catholic World Youth Day presentations for the Pope!!! If it can be done for the Holy Father, broadcast for all the world to see, why not in Berkely??
    It was so painful watching Pope Benedict XVI sit before this same kind of silliness – goofy dancing with floaty scarves – at WYD’s and other occassions, that we ran to turn the TV off until the Circus was done. (Why in the world did the organizers not realize that this was the opposite of what Pope Benedict was promoting!? But now we have a new pope… )

  133. Ed the Roman says:

    As Hank Hill said on an episode of King of the Hill, speaking to a Christian rocker, “you’re not making Christianity better, you’re making rock and roll worse.”

  134. BGrace says:

    While I was watching this, my 11 year old son came in and said:

    “Are they supposed to be Catholic?”


    “First of all, they’re all women and women are not supoosed to be on the altar. And why are they prancing around like that? They look like boobs. It’s so disrespectful. ”

    And after ten more seconds (while walking away in disgust):

    “That’s just stupid.”

    If a kid knows better, then what excuse can the adults give for such asinine behavior?

  135. j says:

    Wondering; when the guy does the incensation, does the congregation have to respond with twirling and hand gestures too?

  136. joecct77 says:

    We are One in the Spirit
    We are One in the Lord
    We are One in the Spirit
    We are One in the Lord
    And together we’ll spread the news that God is in our Land
    And they’ll know we are Christians by our love
    By our Love
    And they’ll know we are Christians by our love……

    Anyone remember that late 60’s, early 70’s ditty?

    40 years of bad catechesis has led to this.

  137. Lynn Diane says:

    As a UCB student I sometimes attended daily Mass at this Newman Center and always found the concrete sanctuary and altar cold and forbidding. Fortunately I never saw any dancers. There is a metal grate about 3 feet square near the back that communicates directly to the outside. In the winter it was cold enough to hang meat.

    As for the use of “God’s” to eliminate the pronoun “His,” in the Oakland diocese that is known as “Berkeley baby talk.” Example: “God sent God’s only son to redeem God’s people so that all who believe in God might share God’s life and praise God’s goodness forever with God in heaven.”

    The old Christmas preface #3, “…in Christ man restores to man the gift of everlasting life” was routinely mangled, as were many other prayers and readings. A dear priest told me years ago to ignore all the weirdness around me and imagine I was instead attending a Mass said by the Desert Fathers.

  138. Xmenno says:

    One very good reason to move to Kansas or Nebraska where most things like this were nipped in the bud, as far as I know. I e-mailed this to my husband who could. not. believe. that it was for real. At our Cathedral Easter Vigil, the RCIA candidates and the altar servers dress the altar with flowers, linens, and candles. If this is the coming thing, I will have to begin dance lessons soon after the Rite of Acceptance in October

  139. Charlotte Allen says:

    @Bea: I was waiting for that guy’s floating scarf to catch fire when he swung the thurible.

  140. jflare says:

    “We are One in the Spirit…And they’ll know we are Christians by our love……”

    Oddly, joecct77, I once liked that song. ..Until we started hearing it rather routinely at All-School-Mass in high school…. These days, I tend to cringe any time I hear a strain of it.

  141. Bob B. says:

    They don’t call it Bezerkly for nothing!

  142. kellym says:

    Gracious! This venue actually makes our cathedral here in San Francisco (St. Mary of the Assumption) seem downright conventional, even though the building reminds one of a washing machine agitator!

    I was originally going to post this in the good news thread, but it seems to fit better here.
    As of the end of May, San Francisco now has a Traditional Latin Mass! Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish has been designated by Archbishop Cordileone as the Archdiocese’s official parish for the TLM every Sunday, major feast day and all Holy Days of Obligation. The turnout has been good considering that none of the other parishes have made mention of it. Outside of Star of the Sea, it’s all been by word of mouth. But people have responded enthusiastically, both by attendance and volunteering in whatever way they can. It also means that folks don’t have to shlepp across the Bay to get to those parishes that do offer a TLM mass. For those in the Bay Area who are reading this, please come and join us. There’s plenty of room. We’re still working out the bugs but it’s exciting to see so many responding so positively.

  143. JKnott says:

    Another motion picture masterpiece from the land of the heretics!
    “Laundry Day in the Cave of the Air Heads”

  144. The Masked Chicken says:

    “We are One in the Spirit…And they’ll know we are Christians by our love……”

    There are some songs that defy logic. If we were one in the Spirit and one in the Lord, then why would we be praying that all unity would one day be restored, since, to be one in the Spirit and one in the Lord would, at least in logic, mean that unity already exists. It is like the Kalandan transporter from the Star Trek TOS episode, That Which Survives, that re-assembles an identical copy of the Enterprise, but with one piece out of phase.

    In fact, we are not one in the Spirit, since to be one in the Spirit would mean to agree with all that the Spirit teaches and the Spirit teaches through the Catholic Church. Since some who claim to be Christians do not agree with the teachings of the Catholic Church, then it is as if they worship the Spirit with astigmatism. This produces two or more, slightly different images of the Spirit.

    Lousy false ecumenism.

    The Chicken

  145. Vecchio di Londra says:

    Obviously I come late to the table on this one, and I suppose most of the sayable has been already said.
    My first reaction to that Appalling-Acting Springing was that composer Aaron Copland and choreographers Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham have an awful lot to answer for.
    My second reaction was that the altar with the two holes in it looked just like a stocks in medieval England – where petty criminals (such as these poor hapless dancers or more properly those who engaged them) would be forcibly seated, fettered hand and foot and delivered to the mercy of the passers-by who would throw rotten fruit and vegetables at them.
    My third reaction was that the chap swinging the mini-thurible would never get a job as a thurifer – he obviously has no idea.
    And then at the end after this Peter-Pan re-enactment of the Resurrection, the lonely grey-haired, resigned figure of the priest, unaccompanied by any altar server to respond, serve, ring the bell. The disciples had all fled. That no longer seemed like a joke – or a Resurrection.

    And theatre director (or Bishop) worth his salt would say – ‘We don’t open till this is all fixed!’

  146. Vecchio di Londra says:

    “Any” theatre director, not “And” – apols for typo.

  147. Supertradmum says:

    “Toto, I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.

  148. acardnal says:

    Supertradmum, I thought you were giving up the Internet for more solitude. Did I misunderstand something you posted on your blog?

  149. Rick63 says:

    Maybe the salt has lost its flavor.

    Anyway, you have to remember this is California. As new bishops are installed, this type of activity will disappear. For now, we should check the roster and see if any vocations are coming from this place. I suspect they have had no vocations for the past several years. But just in case, we should make sure they are quietly subjected to mental re-wiring so proper formation can be absorbed.
    On the other hand, it is nice to know the gate to heaven is narrow and few go there. Eternity is a long time to be spending with people like this.

  150. kelleyb says:

    The theater of the absurd replacing the sacred. This seems appropriate worship for the American catholic church. Was that yellow smoke emanating from the Thurble? God please help us.

  151. NBW says:

    WAIT…. THERE’S MORE! Here is the Gospel being read with dancing!!!

  152. majuscule says:

    “WAIT…. THERE’S MORE! Here is the Gospel being read with dancing!!!”

    Oh my!


  153. Mike says:

    drea916 rightly points out that stuff like this lengthens the Mass.

    Now, isn’t it funny that the same liturgical liberals who like this stuff (or lengthy announcements during Mass, or anything “fun” during Mass which could theoretically lengthen it) are the same ones who insist that Mass would be TOO LONG (heaven forbid) if only the priest were to give Holy Communion?

    I think there are two possible reasons this stuff is able to occur. One reason, perhaps less charitable to assume, is that these people deliberately want to make a mockery of the Holy Mass and undermine the doctrines contained therein. The second (and in my opinion, more likely) possibility is that they just have NO IDEA what the Mass is.

    Think about this. If you read the Baltimore Catechism or any missals from 1962 and before, they speak constantly of the “Sacrifice of the Mass”. Catholics then knew exactly what the Mass was: the sacrifice of the Cross made present here below, in a nonbloody manner. You almost never hear about the “Sacrifice of the Mass” anymore. We throw around the vague term “liturgy”, which is probably synonymous with “worship” to most people. “Worship” can take any form, the “Sacrifice of the Mass” cannot. We must recover the proper term for the liturgy, explain it to those unfamiliar with it, and use it often: the Sacrifice of the Mass.

  154. jflare says:

    “My first reaction to that Appalling-Acting Springing was that composer Aaron Copland and choreographers Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham have an awful lot to answer for.”

    I’m not quite following why you knock Copland, Vecchio? I can’t pretend to know what religious ideals he followed–if any–but I don’t think he ever intended that his music would be used for Mass; certainly not like this.

  155. Elizabeth D says:

    inara, lace is like mosquito netting against sacristy fairies. I am glad your son is protected. Sacristy fairy bites can be verri nasti.

  156. AndreM73 says:

    I remember that about four years ago there was a cantor at the Cathedral here in St. Cloud (St. Mary’s) that did a sort of “liturgical dance” before the Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. That paled in comparison to this when it comes to ridiculousness, and I remembered thinking ‘don’t be judgmental, she’s just doing it because she loves Jesus.’ I was not informed that this was/is forbidden (yet not policed), and now I see it in a completely different light, and things like that have brought me to the Tridentine Rite, which is infinitely more beautiful.

    I must say that my initial reaction to the above video was to rend my garments and cry aloud; but that was after I fell down laughing.

  157. jarhead462 says:

    BTW- It was not the organ playing Copeland, it was someone playing a recording.
    I guess you can say it was a type of organ after all……

    Semper Fi!

  158. Fr Jackson says:

    Just remember: they are in “FULL communion”!

  159. VexillaRegis says:

    This is neither liturgy, nor art!

    jarhead462: Organs never play, organists do! ;-) But your’re right, it was a recording of an orchestra playing Copeland. I’m amazed that some people (church goers at that) can’t hear the difference!

    Vexilla, organist (MA)

  160. Steven Surrency says:

    I don’t have time to read all the replies. I am assuming everyone is upset because the Pascal Candle is not in a prominent place as the GIRM requires. And because they didn’t dress the altar with the Benedictine altar arrangement. *Chuckle*

  161. Steven Surrency says:

    I don’t have time to read all the replies. I am assuming everyone is upset because the Pascal Candle is not in a prominent place as the GIRM requires. And because they didn’t dress the altar with the Benedictine altar arrangement. *Chuckle*

  162. thefeds says:

    Fr Z, this must be what our Lord had in mind when He said “I will vomit you out…”

  163. sciencemom says:

    And I *still* don’t know what they were bowing to … a blank wall?!

  164. netokor says:

    Majuscule, you’re on to something. I muted it and began to narrate out loud:

    “When shall we three meet again
    In thunder, lightning, or in rain?”

  165. Random Friar says:

    Suburban Banshee hit on the reason for the altar, the old tradition of having holes in a saint’s tomb so the faithful could touch the relics. The idea behind the design (and the outside looks similar) was that it was meant to be representative of the catacombs of the early Christians. I guess this was when primitivism was big.

    Speaking seriously and impartially, it does have a tomb/catacomb effect when it’s dark. However, in any ample light, the concrete and stone look almost cartoonish.

  166. feargalmac says:

    Oh dear!! Words fail. I’d have to have been superglued to the pew to stay through that (expletives deleted).

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