VIDEO: How long can you stand it?

A priest friend of mine posted this elsewhere with the challenge… can you make it to the end of this video?  How long can you stand it before you click off?

And to think… some men don’t want to go to church. Who knows why?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. celpar says:

    40 seconds. What they’re dancing round looks like old-fashioned English stocks- you’re secured with legs through the holes then pelted with rotten fruit and worse. Just a thought.

  2. idelsan says:

    I do not know how to post a photo of my face watching the video. A pity. It must be a really funny face.

  3. My score is minus 10 seconds, because I am SOOOO not going there, and decided that even before the video image had properly loaded on to your web page.

  4. Hank Igitur says:

    If I want ballet I can buy a ticket to the theatre, if I want paganism I can go to Stonehenge, if I want a tropical garden I can go to Singapore.
    The Alleluia banner could perhaps be replaced with “Father forgive them…………”
    If I want to attend Mass I can go to the TLM.
    btw the apparent “celebrant” is not wearing a chasuble of course and the ballet dancer’s thurible work is terrible.

  5. tzard says:

    I watched the whole thing. I need to go take a shower now

    Actually, an initial thought was “at least they got them to do this somewhere else than the church”. My disappointment grew as time went on.

    Dancing around a huge brick?

    Wow, how are those men who are dancing not totally embarrassed prancing around like that?

    Are they barefoot?

  6. yatzer says:

    I’m a woman and it’s embarrassing to see that travesty. At first I wondered if the thing was a representation of graves or something and then it slowly dawned on me that it was being vested as an altar. What was that guy doing with the incense; it looked like a yoyo demonstration. Please, Lord make it go away.

  7. Gaz says:

    Well, that is six minutes I’ll never get back. It’s certainly not a Benedictine arrangement as the crucifix is way off centre. At an early stage, I wondered why people were dancing on the other side of the altar. It would make much more sense to do it in front of the altar where all actions could be seen. Then there was the thurifer, whose actions could only be described as akin to those of Blackadder, Then there was the Invisible Nun( at 5:15. Finally, to put all charity assunder, the priest with stole on top.

  8. Facta Non Verba says:

    About 3 minutes, and then I fast-forwarded through the rest. Very pagan.

  9. pattif says:

    In what way was that about the worship of God Almighty, rather than the self-glorification of the participants?

  10. govmatt says:

    At least they used incense?

    The two things I find so sad about this is that 1) They don’t know any better, because if they did they would know they look ridiculous (and not in the “I’m going to push the envelope to make a point” ridiculous, but the “What I’m doing offends the God I mean to worship” ridiculous); and 2) That these are the type of folks that are destroying a) WYD-type events and b) vocations.

    Regarding 2a., this type of nonsense is still so evident at any “world gathering of [insert group]” event. It makes these events so distasteful and ruins any sense of universality. Regarding 2b., Fr. Z has hit the nail on the head regarding the feminization of liturgical practice. If you’re a man and being asked to give your life for something, you want to know it is serious and it matters.

  11. mpmaron says:

    Over and over again. Whatever it takes. No matter how ridiculous. The Mass must be about me Lord. Me. Me. Me.

  12. I watched the entire ballet just to prove to myself that I could do so. Having indulged, I think I deserve an indulgence.

    The best thing I can say about the ballet is that they used a thurible. Put another way, I was fully expecting the ballerinas to have those incense bowls like they use during the annual Los Angeles religious education conference, prancing them up and down and around the stage. That would have improved overall ambiance.

    I was also wondering about that thing the ballerinas were decorating and couldn’t make out what it looked like. Tzard hit the nail on the head: A humongous brick…three holes would have been more appropriate to symbolize the Trinity. But, maybe the artist who crafted that brick wanted to remind people of Jesus’ two natures. I think it a cinder block would have been more appropriate for this venue.

    This is what the Council Fathers at Vatican II envisioned as “liturgical reform”?

    To quote then-Cardinal Josef Ratzinger:

    “How often do we celebrate only ourselves, without even realizing that He is there! Here ‘He’ refers to Jesus Christ crucified, and risen, the great missing person of so many new liturgies, which have become meaningless dances around the Golden Calf that is ourselves.

    Stations of the Cross
    Good Friday 2004

  13. JBS says:

    All, with some fast forwarding. I intend no offense in suggesting this, but I think this sort of thing could be the result of too much homosexual influence among priests. The presbyterium is meant to be a place of manly sacrifice, not feminine fluttery.

  14. OrthodoxChick says:

    Made it to 1:03 and then I couldn’t hit the pause button fast enough. Was Stonehenge booked that day or something?

  15. Legisperitus says:

    The music’s not nearly Star-Trekky enough.

  16. jfk03 says:

    This, of course, is Holy Spirit Parish, Newman Hall, at U C Berkeley. I used to attend mass at the old Newman Hall back in the 60s. It was torn down to make room for a UC parking garage, and was replaced by the current concrete Bastille. It was built during the reign of Bishop Begin of Oakland. Sad, sad, sad to say (and I am not proud) I stopped going to church for 20 years as a result of the liturgical chaos of this era, which unfortunately continues to this day.

  17. +JMJ+ says:

    I watched it at work, so I had the audio off. Somebody who’s already watched it with the audio please rewatch and compare – I suspect it’s even more ridiculous without, but I’m not going to test that theory myself.

    I *almost* turned it off as soon as I saw the folks approaching the altar in bare feet, so at about 0:15. But I actually made it to 2:43. Afterwards, I had to actually look it up to see whether the church where this took place was in communion with the Church. Alas – yes; it’s on the Diocese of Oakland’s webpage.

    That being said, I have a friend who is a big fan of liturgical dance who probably would’ve loved it (a religious sister, who is pushing 80).

  18. fwbear says:

    I did…I did…make it 20 seconds!

  19. CradleRevert says:

    Maybe I’ll save this video and make its watching part of my Friday penances.

  20. jherforth says:

    Made it to a 1:17, then skipped to 3:30 for an additional 5 seconds, wretched, and skipped then near the end for an additional 5 seconds for a total time of 1:27. What did I win?!

  21. GypsyMom says:

    Gives a whole new meaning to doing 360’s with the thurible.

  22. “And to think… some men don’t want to go to church. Who knows why?”

    41 seconds of this thing was enough to make a guess. But for a serious answer, see Cardinal Burke’s latest:

    Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke on the Catholic “Man-crisis” and what to do about it

  23. CruceSignati says:

    My oh my, I have never seen such amazing reverence! Didn’t y’all see how they bowed to the tabernacle that was located directly behind the altar? Why, I can’t think of a better way to bring more converts into the Church, especially the really tough menfolk! That music they was playin’, with the chorus of “Lord of the Dance” comin’ in every so often, it was real fine!

    *sarcasm/southern accent off*

    Reason #19858 for Summorum Pontificum…

  24. Michael says:

    I detested the entire thing, but I made it through all of it. I felt so bad for the poor thurible when the man swung it in a circle over his head!

    And was I the only one who felt that, with all the show and ridiculousness involved here, the priest should have been far more entertaining when he went up to the altar?

    Deliver us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from the tribulation of liturgical dance.

  25. Chuck says:

    I watched it all and went through all phases of grief. First the bare feet, and that awful Lord of the Dance “hymn” set to a shaker tune by an Englishman in 1963, the fluttering scarves and the rhythmic gymnastics with the incense…but compared to the architecture I loved it! At least the plants and flowers appeared to have been real. Was this really the Easter Vigil? I wonder because of the Easter Candle in the back. If it the “new” candle it is very short indicating they do not expect many baptisms or funerals in the coming year, or if it the “old” one it’s just one more thing they have done wrong. I like tzard above need a shower.

  26. Cafea Fruor says:

    Please. Stop with the whole ‘this is so bad it’s un-masculine.’ To say such is an insult against true femininity. Something atrocious and ridiculous is NOT “feminine” just because manly men wouldn’t be caught dead doing it. I’m far, far from a feminist, but this really bothers me when men say carp like this — if it’s something they don’t like, well, then it must be feminine. So, you’re saying that just because a man doesn’t like something, it’s a woman’s thingd? Seriously? It’s a logical fallacy to say that something bad must be not-masculine, and if not masculine, then feminine, because that would ultimately mean that anything feminine is bad. Please think before you make comments like this. Something that’s bad is just bad, regardless of the masculinity or femininity of it.

    This womanly woman wouldn’t be caught dead committing this atrocity either.

  27. juergensen says:

    What days does the LGBT Ministry meet?

  28. Indulgentiam says:

    I made made it to 2:15 before I caught myself wishing that they’d all trip on the scarf thingies and all go crashing to the ground. If I’d have watched one more second I’d have flushed my iPhone down the nearest toilet.
    I can’t help but think that stuff like this is what made Our Lord sweat blood in the garden. To see his bloody and agonizing sacrifice so mocked…there are no words vile enough to discribe this cr**.
    Dear Lord, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, I (we) offer You these prayers in reparation for the sins which offend God the most in these modern times–the sins of BLASPHEMY and the PROFANATION OF SUNDAY and Your Holy Days of Obligation:

    One Our Father, Hail Mary,
    and Glory Be To The Father

    dictated by Our Lord to Sister Mary of St. Peter

    May the most holy, most sacred, most adorable, most incomprehensible and unutterable Name of God be always praised, blessed, loved, adored and glorified, in Heaven, on earth, and under the earth, by all the creatures of God, and by the Sacred Heart of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Amen.

  29. The Egyptian says:

    gag, urp, swallow hard, bad taste in my mouth
    that church needs to be converted to a bomb shelter
    of course UC Berzerkly,
    no self respecting MALE would last long there, maybe the idea all along
    sadly we up here in the northern wasteland of diocese of Cincinnati have people in charge who still think if we were more like this we’d have more priests and religious
    hasn’t worked for years so lets try, you know, more cowbell

  30. Mike says:

    Zero. Novus Ordo blasphemy and sham do not attract me even as horror show.

  31. Broggi66 says:

    And that concludes the interpretive dance portion of our show, “Catholic Mass: A Multimedia Experience!”. We will now have a five minute intermission. Please join us for the second act, “Let’s Nosh! An Interpretive Reading of the Last Supper”.

  32. iPadre says:

    I was more focused on the rock in the middle of the sanctuary. My fear was that an alien or demon would come crawling out of one of the two holes.

    Seriously, I can’t believe we are still living in the dark, dark ages of the 60’s.

  33. Indulgentiam says:

    @Cafea Fruor
    of course atrocities are not limited to the feminine. However what the gentlemen are referring too is that this particular atrocity is the brainchild of females in the church. No getting around it. I am a woman. The fact that our sisters are running amuck in the Church is a fact. Are they good representatives of “real femininity”? About as much as those limp wristed , loose hipped girly men, up there, are good representatives of males. Am I embarrassed by this as a female? Girl, I’m havin a gimme a double Jack, my dog done died, my truck burnt down snot hangin cry. But the fact remains that it’s females that push this cr** and there ain’t no getting around that. The men are just calling it like it is.

  34. CAR says:

    Well, there goes my morning breakfast. About 1:04–ugh, but for my own sanity, I couldn’t help but laugh thinking of an episode of I Love Lucy, where the English tutor was singing, Tippy, Tippy Toe. Prayers.

  35. nemo says:

    Long enough to determine that the music is Aaron Copland’s “Appalachian Spring.” The section depicted used the Shaker tune “The Gift to be Simple” and depicts the daily life of a newly married farmer and his bride.

    What does this have to do with the Easter Vigil?

  36. Andreas says:

    I made it about half way through before I realized that I wasn’t watching one of those wonderfully horrendous B-grade kitsch movies from the 1950s where would-be Hollywood starlets were squeezed into such costumes and made to dance round the fires in the temple for some evil King or Queen (often of a planet other than Earth). However, after abit of scholarly research, I believe I have come up with the video primer used for the carrying out such eccentric activities: You may note the liturgical tambourine-drum that cleverly appears about 1’25” into the video.

  37. Packrraat says:

    Just GHASTLY. As a woman, I would be embarrassed to have anything to do with something like this. I cannot fathom why a MAN would get involved. Looks like druids or twirling dervishes. And I thought OUR parish was bad. I would have liked to have seen some pictures of the congregation during this horrible display.

  38. A.D. says:

    Where do I begin? I watched it all to my dismay.

    Very few humans have a body that could rival that provided to Adam or Eve before the Fall. None of these had it. May I suggest never using white clothing? A beautiful dark flowery print would serve nicely in place of a fig leaf.

    Decide once and for all whether you wish to simulate the flight of heavenly angels or scare some little old lady by pretending to be a 747 on a suicide mission.

    Tell me you didn’t… you really didn’t… lay the altar cloth on the floor before you tossed it on the altar like a blanket. Please, tell me I really didn’t see that!

    Actually, just tell me this was a very, very bad joke!

  39. stillkickin says:

    Made it 50 seconds, all I could stand before I had to stop it.

  40. donadrian says:

    An entirely appropriate response to Aaron Copeland’s ineffably irritating music.

  41. Mary Jane says:

    After reading the comments, I’ve decided I’m not brave enough to watch any!

  42. Northern Ox says:

    I barely made the 1 minute mark.

  43. Robbie says:

    I made it 32 seconds. Oof! That was painful.

  44. Tony Phillips says:

    You know, I kind of think–hey, whatever floats your boat. I mean, if dancing (or watching dancing) draws people’s hearts closer to God, who am I to judge? I just hope there was no sermon…like the man said, 6 minutes is 6 minutes.
    The one thing I didn’t like was the way they kept turning their backs to the people. That is, like, so pre-Vatican II.

  45. Jim of Bowie says:

    One minute (had my cursor on the pause button). Then I said this prayer:

    MOST Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly.
    I offer Thee the Most Precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity
    of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world,
    in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges, and indifference
    by which He is offended. And through the infinite merit
    of His Most Sacred Heart, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
    I beg of Thee the conversion of poor sinners.

  46. Scherzophrenic says:

    Although I like the Quaker hymn in Appalachian Spring – Aaron Copland – its composer was an atheist. Why play his music in a Mass? Cuz – pretty – that’s why. The squeaking bottoms of the feet didn’t improve the sound. I got to the end. It’s all just too silly for me.

  47. majuscule says:

    I saw your priest friend’s post “elsewhere” but didn’t watch the video because I thought I had already seen it. But no, this is a different one. Same venue as the one I was thinking of though.

    Oh, it’s supposed to be a church? Coulda fooled me.

    The sound of the scarves flapping around was…interesting.

  48. jdskyles says:

    Awful. Just awful. The estates of Aaron Copland and Martha Graham should sue, as should the entire Shaker community, what’s left of them.

  49. NBW says:

    I lasted 1:18 and then skipped around. B-o-r-i-n-g. What a joke. No wonder people, especially men are not going to that particular Mass. Can’t look at that Mass and say Church Militant.

  50. MEFV says:

    The one saving grace — so to speak — is that this was at the Easter Vigil and, thus, not in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.

  51. Servant of the Liturgy says:

    Watched the whole thing; it serves as a reminder that what we do at the Altar and the way we do it is important, from the music to the servers to the liturgical appointments to the celebrant and on and on.

    1. It’s not masculine, but I certainly don’t define it as feminine.
    2. I find so-called liturgy (and performances) of this ilk to be a near occasion of sin for myself, as I end up hoping for someone to trip and fall on someone else’s train-scarf thing, or that the person toting the thurible would have whacked it on the head of the other person trouncing around the same space.
    3. I reiterate the above, if they only knew why and how absolutely wrong this was, they would know why and how it is so ridiculous.

  52. justfeddup says:

    They were discalced!

  53. MWindsor says:

    I sat through the whole thing, but I think I contracted ebola as a result. My eyes are bleeding and I have a fever.

  54. Fleeb says:

    Jersey Barrier Dance…how nice.

  55. YoungLatinMassGuy says:

    Made it all the way through, because the blonde was kinda good looking.

    If there was No. Other. Choice. I would attend such a “Mass”. I’d most likely get kinda/sort/very drunk afterwards. And take a cold shower afterwards as well…

    But I would do it.

    Because my loyalty is to Jesus Christ and his Church first.

  56. Arele says:

    Oh my! I made it about halfway through.
    The “resurrected” Jesus flying off the cross, the weird stone altar with holes in it, the recorded music. Ugh. And all this BEFORE the “dancers” hit the “stage!”

    Just. So. Wrong…

  57. Angie Mcs says:

    Two minutes and I was done – I was mostly trying to catch the faces on the men. I seem to have seen them in other such videos. Perhaps they travel the area and have their dances recorded. In any case, I feel that churches like this provide forums for frustrated dancers who cannot make it in the world on stage. Oh, what joy to finally express themselves in front of a captive and undiscerning audience! It really is about me, me, me, as mpmaron stated.

    Having seen my share of excellent modern dance onstage and heard enough Copeland, this is a travesty of mediocre art expression. However, that isn’t the real crux of the matter. It is the approval of a pastor who allows the mass to be filtered through this mess, who stands back and permits his flock to be fed this drivel. It is the loss of the true beauty of the Church, art composed for the glorification of Our Lord. In the church I attend, our choir and orchestras play beautifully, they reflect the love of the Lord with the talents they have been given, and their gifts to us lift our hearts up to Him.

    As a woman, I can understand the comments about feminism, but I don’t take them to be offensive. We all know that women have played and continue to contribute an important part to the Church. Yes, there is a certain feminism here that is misguided. It makes one feel the need for strong, masculinity in our clergy and the emptiness without that strength. I doubt the performers meant to do that, but they only push us away from what they are probably trying to accomplish.: inspiring us. Big fail.

  58. Del says:

    I committed myself to watching the whole thing.

    I made it to 3:49. And I want those 3-3/4 minutes back.

    If this a college Newman center parish, then why are these all of these self-referential prancers so middle-aged?

  59. TraditionalCatholicGirl says:

    I managed to force myself to watch the entire thing, though the automatic urge to barf was present.

    This atrocity isn’t even CLOSE to feminine looking. It looks like a badly run production of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Nights Dream.”

    The first word that came to my mind when I saw the dancers waving around those scarves? “Fairies. They are all flipping fairies, dancing and bowing down to the great cinderblock of doom.”

    And someone, PLEASE get that poor thurible out of that dancers hands! He treats it like a stage prop! (Which considering how they treated the gifts and the sacred vessels, is honestly not at all surprising.)

    Reason number… (what number are we on??? I’ve lost count) for Summorum Pontificum.

  60. Mike says:

    If there was No. Other. Choice. I would attend such a “Mass”. I’d most likely get kinda/sort/very drunk afterwards. And take a cold shower afterwards as well…

    When Holy Mass can become almost an intrinsic occasion of sin, it is time for responsible adults to revolt: if not from the rectories or chanceries, then from the pews.

  61. acricketchirps says:

    I have a theory that liturgical dance was invented to justify moving the tabernacle to a different room… Does that make sense?

  62. magistercaesar says:

    Pressed play, noticed the music was Copland’s Appalachian Spring, then opened another tab so I could enjoy the music without subjecting my eyes to what was going on lol

  63. Uxixu says:

    I go to where the shaman came running in with altar cloth and his… assistant dancers.

    Horrible travesty that I can pray they repent from.

  64. servusfidelis says:

    At least if I didn’t know what I was looking at I would never guess that this was in a Catholic Church. Kinda reminds me of a really bad community dance pageant at the local recreational department.

  65. Bob Glassmeyer says:

    When I was in seminary, some of us jokingly called the local university’s Newman Center the “Newperson Center,” which I believe made use of Eucharistic bread “recipes.”

    It seems to me that Ecclesia Supplet would not include raisins in the bread, as our former rector quipped one day, “this – except for the raisins – is my body.” (Father Zuhlsdorf, please correct me if I am in error about this term.)

    If this were the only “Mass” within 100 miles of me, I would have a really hard time going. The parish up the street from me had it’s own little performance on the Sunday next before Christmas, when the Deacon sang the “Whoville” song from the Grinch during his homily, and that did it for me. I got up, genuflected, and quietly left, going down the road to another parish. The experience there made me want to scream, too, but not to the point of wanting to immolate myself.

    The stuff in the video is, among a host of other things, dated. The true liturgical treasures of our Church are TIMELESS.

    It’s a pity that people of quite a wide span of age think the above video speaks of what Catholic worship is. Sometimes when I think nonsense like this is over, I begin to think again, and I think it’s going to get really, really bad before it gets better. The high and mighty liberals in the Church (who are properly called fascists, because if they were truly liberal, they would allow those who think differently from them the time of day, at least) keep coming out of the woodwork like termites, and continue to treat people who think differently than they as stupid.

    So much for “all are welcome in this place.”

  66. Fern says:

    If all of this was actually done (acted) at a Mass, where were the men, with wives and children in tow, to put a stop to it then and there? Where were the men to make certain that the camera suddenly ceased to work. I rest my case!

  67. xavier217 says:

    I made it all the way through, but it required me imagining the little people dancing around the Stonehenge model in Spinal Tap.

  68. TNCath says:

    I can hear it now: “And now, all the way from Miami Beach, the June Taylor Dancers!”

  69. Genna says:

    56 seconds. Life’s too short.

  70. Kerry says:

    Just guessing here, the holes in the brick must have been for the holy Goat and the holy Spigot.

  71. ThankyouB16 says:

    At :56, it ceases to be ad orientem; they turn to the audience and start entertaining at that point. That’s when it was time to say goodbye.

  72. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    31 seconds (less the first 15 in which nothing happens). Gad.

  73. servusfidelis says:

    This was a High Mass at St. Calumny Church. Too bad they stopped the film before the group hug and the Communion of smores.

  74. Patti Day says:

    I hope this is a very old video. It did remind me to take my medication for my arthritic shoulder though.

  75. Skeinster says:

    45 seconds. “Simple Gifts” was the tell that this would be very, very bad.
    Liturgical dance is the kinetic version of the overly-dramatic lector.

  76. dans0622 says:

    Star Trek has been mentioned. Indeed. A few episodes flashed through my mind. First, seeing the rocky decorations, I immediately thought of “Devil in the Dark”, wondering if a horta would burrow its way into the…sanctuary. Then, “Shore Leave”, where your most dreadful and tragic thoughts can become real. Then “The Way to Eden”, just because those characters and these dancers seem quite similar.

  77. dans0622 says:

    At about 1:40, I thought “at least it can’t get any worse than this.” Then, a lot of other things happened….like at around 3:15.

  78. AV8R61 says:

    One of the justifications for the number of EMHCs has always been that Communion would take too long without them. Yet the same people who think Holy Communion (receiving Our Lord and taking quiet time with Him) takes too much time will spend this amount of time celebrating themselves.

  79. Xopher says:

    AV8R61 just beat me to it! That was my observation. They’ve reformed to shorten the Mass (Holy Communion) only to reform to lengthen it with this…stuff.

  80. teejay329 says:

    I think I need to go to confession…and even after only 40 seconds!

  81. templariidvm says:

    My only question is why do the Hari Krishna’s have a cross on the wall???

  82. oldconvert says:

    57 seconds….I’m posting from England – please tell me they don’t have these kind of shenanigans in my country, please….
    It reminded me of being back at school in the 1960s when we were compelled to take a class called “Modern Dance” once a week – exactly this kind of performance. But that was in the school gym not in a church!

  83. jflare says:

    Well, that was.. … ..interesting. To say the least!
    I made it all the way through and enjoyed hearing Copland’s music again.
    I do not think, though, that such an approach makes sense for Easter Vigil. In all honesty, especially with the women dancing around the table, er, altar, I thought this looked like some form of pagan ritual, never mind the cross on the upper left.
    I had figured this would be simple to watch, just another case of fool liturgical dance. Even so, I almost clicked it off when I saw the man begin to twirl the thurible. I could imagine someone in the front row watching this whizzing object in motion, and praying that this didn’t become a literal flying saucer!

    While I can make sense of the idea that they’re preparing the altar for Mass–and doing so may even take 6 minutes in some cases–that’s something that needs to be done before Mass begins, not as part and parcel OF the Mass.

    Once again, I come down to a particular question: What does it all MEAN?

    Priestly vestments have symbols and colors that have meaning. Gestures a priest makes during Mass have meaning. Incensing the altar has a meaning.

    What idea does this dance convey that’s relevant to the Mass??
    Especially to Easter Vigil?

  84. Xmenno says:

    This is not the first time this video has made it to my computer. My husband and I had a huge hoot about it, although he’s very sure that there is almost none of this stuff happening anymore (?). I would be interested in the response of those who designed this atrocity to our comments. How would they defend this, and answer our objections? Do they have any idea how offensive we find this, and how would they interpret our offense?

  85. No More Tambourines says:

    I lasted about 45 second before I had to rush into the bathroom to vomit.

  86. excalibur says:

    Meanwhile…….. The destruction of the Franciscans of the Immaculate continues.


  87. frjim4321 says:

    Lots to hate about this.

    But I love Copland.


    Recorded Music
    NOT lighting the side candles from the Paschal Candle.
    Consecrating (I would assume) numerous pre-filled cups.
    Turning a relatively perfunctory part of liturgy (preparation) into a Big Deal.
    Exceeding the attention span of children (who can be heard in the assembly).
    Presider not accepting the gifts and placing them on the altar table.
    Costumes were amateurish.
    Gifts not presented by neophytes. This is a big problem.
    No money in the presentation.
    Vesture of the presider is crappy.
    Presider seems disengaged.

    I like this even less than the unreformed mass of the early ’60’s, and that’s saying a LOT.

    What’s the context? I could almost see this on a college campus, Newman-type, place with a dramaturgy program … where the heck is this from? At a typical parish? I don’t see it.

  88. frjim4321 says:

    “Holy Spirit Parish, Newman Hall, at U C Berkeley. ”

    Thanks … contextually that works, then. I suspect the children I heard were from the neighborhood.

    “Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke on the Catholic “Man-crisis” and what to do about it” – Henry

    Henry, there’s been a lot of commentary on this in the past couple days … I think the two heavy guys in the gauzy outfits are at least as manly as a middle aged prelate in a cappa magna and ermine collar.

    Something else to HATE: Censor that don’t smoke. My trad friends would be happy to know that at the very least, when I use incense I USE INCENSE!!! What is it with censors that don’t smoke? Like t*** on a bull!!!

  89. Dave N. says:

    As Paul Harvey used to say, and now for the rest of the story….

    This rather well-known parish in Berkeley, CA (Diocese of Oakland) has suffered under all sorts of abuse for decades, including a well-known policy of open Holy Communion. However, there have been many changes with the advent of Bp. Michael Barber, S.J., now that Bishop “But-how-could-I- have-possibly-known-Catholic-Charities-was-funding-contraception-and-abortion?” was moved to much greener career pastures across the bay in San Francisco. Openly gay priests (Paulists) removed, FOCUS missionaries called in to help out in the parish. Lots and lots and lots of changes. Note the date is 2013 and under the prior Bishop’s watch…

    It’s easy to castigate what is obviously extremely negative in order to fire up the base. Sure there is still much to do but not all is lost.

  90. Lutgardis says:

    frjim4321 says Henry, there’s been a lot of commentary on this in the past couple days … I think the two heavy guys in the gauzy outfits are at least as manly as a middle aged prelate in a cappa magna and ermine collar.

    Well, the cappa magna serves a liturgical purpose and is meant to symbolize the finery of the world, ceremonially stripped off as the prelate puts on the other vestments and becomes clothed in Christ, disappearing to become in persona Christi.

    It’s not good form to make fun of the proper ceremonial items of Mass used within the context of a Mass. It’s not like Cardinal Burke is swanning through airports or kicking back on couches in the cappa magna.

  91. frjim4321 says:

    “It’s not good form to make fun of the proper ceremonial items of Mass used within the context of a Mass.”

    True, but before I was born*, and before the reformation of the liturgy.

    * a very long time ago …. we’re talking Sputnik!

  92. jilly4life says:

    I have unfortunately seen this particular video before, and I watched it all the way through for the second time. I think I was bored to tears by a minute in, as they apparently only know 5 moves total. I must be particularly desensitized, since the parish I grew up in had liturgical dancing, or Jesus’ Color Guard, as my husband calls them. (No offense meant to real color guard members or alums).

  93. Lin says:

    This is NOT Catholic!

  94. MouseTemplar says:

    While the last woman flapped her sleeves and left the sanctuary my husband yelled “To the Bat Cave!”


  95. Gail F says:

    Until they turned around (about 58 seconds) and started hopping, when it became apparent that they were not good dancers. Liturgical dance is a bad idea anyway, but why would anyone watch a video of it unless it featured amazing dancers — or unless they were your relatives?

  96. Gail F says:

    What I meant by that was… I don’t like liturgical dancing in the West, it’s just not part of our tradition (unless it’s in an ethnic parish where people DO have that tradition) and looks silly and/or forced. That said, I think that people doing it can be sincere and feel that they are giving their best to God, and they should be accommodated in some way OUTSIDE of Mass. But a video like this is only for entertainment or education. There’s nothing to learn (except that it’s a bad idea) and it’s not good entertainment. So… I turned it off.

  97. jflare says:

    “While the last woman flapped her sleeves and left the sanctuary my husband yelled ‘To the Bat Cave!'”


  98. Spooky says:

    Originally I only got about 1:49 in, but after reading the comments I had to go back and look. Some thoughts: Do they know how ridiculous they look? I must have laughed at least 4 times. The one “dancer” looked a lot like Colin Mochrie from Who’s Line. I was hoping to hear Drew hit the buzzer, but alas. I also would have loved to see the congre-audience. I suspect most were of “a certain age”. I’m so grateful I don’t have to endure shenanigans like this.

  99. AnAmericanMother says:

    Well . . . I watched it all the way through, out of professional interest.
    I actually have some qualifications in this area – two certificates in dance and being raised more or less in a dance company of which my mom was the Artistic Director.
    So . . . here’s my take.
    First of all, let me make it clear my firm belief that these shenanigans are WHOLLY INAPPROPRIATE for Holy Mass. Now that I’ve got that out of the way . . .

    I have always said that liturgical dance is perpetrated by people who couldn’t get a gig anywhere else. I’m going to have to modify that on the basis of this video.
    This is a specific style of modern or contemporary dance – not so much Graham as Humphrey/Weidman. It is a little old-fashioned – could have been my mom’s company back in the 70s. The body alignment and the treatment of the “props” (sorry, Father) is characteristic, as is the choreography. And the fluttery thingies are soooo typical – probably overdone really.
    With that said – the two principal women are obviously well-trained dancers and are reasonably competent. Their alignment is good, extension is good, movement originating from the center of the body as per the style. I suspect that these two ladies came over from the dance department, and that they also did the choreography. The third lady is a stand-in – horrible posture and no idea how to move.
    The men are awful. Clearly the two ladies in charge sent out the call for male dancers, and this is what they were stuck with. They can’t move properly – shoot, they can’t even STAND properly. Good male dancers are very poised, very taut, very emphatic in line . . . these guys . . . smh . . .

  100. aruder says:

    In addition to noting the errors with the dance in the liturgy, we should note that the choice of profane (not sacred) music is counter to authoritative Church teaching. As Pope Saint John Paul II writes in “Chirograph of the Supreme Pontiff for the Centenary of the Motu Proprio ‘Tra Le Sollecitudini’ on Sacred Music”:
    ‘St Pius X’s reform aimed specifically at purifying Church music from the contamination of profane theatrical music that in many countries had polluted the repertoire and musical praxis of the Liturgy. In our day too, careful thought, as I emphasized in the Encyclical Ecclesia de Eucharistia, should be given to the fact that not all the expressions of figurative art or of music are able “to express adequately the mystery grasped in the fullness of the Church’s faith”. Consequently, not all forms of music can be considered suitable for liturgical celebrations.’

  101. Eugene says:

    I should not have watched it right after I had my morning snack..I really don’t feel well and its Not because of the healthy apple I just ate…Lord have mercy!

  102. Massachusetts Catholic says:

    Who shot the two cannonballs through the altar?

  103. Charlotte Allen says:

    That church is the Newman Center at UC-Berkeley, an all-concrete Brutalist monstrosity from the 1960s. I haven’t attended Mass there since 2002, but its liturgies are notoriously ghastly. The “dance ministry” seems to be central. I blame the Paulist fathers who run the place. They seem to love this sort of thing.

  104. Cheesesteak Expert says:

    Wait, does not a Catholic have to abide by whatever the Supreme Legislator, aka The Pope, authorizes, as Pope Paul VI did with the promulgation of this rite? The local Catholic ordinary, part of the Magisterium, allows this. So what right does anyone have to object? It’s all in Pastor Aeternus, is not, part of the Pope’s universal, immediate and supreme jurisdiction?

    Can’t pick and choose now, can one? That would make a cafeteria Catholic, would it not?

    Ah, Innovation, Thy Home is Rome.

  105. 1173justin says:

    A.D. says,

    “Decide once and for all whether you wish to simulate the flight of heavenly angels or scare some little old lady by pretending to be a 747 on a suicide mission.”

    I nominate you, for winning the internets!

  106. Pingback: Is There Anything More Asinine Than Liturgical Dance? | The American Catholic

  107. PeterK says:

    I made it all the way through. a penance greater than 3 Hail Marys and an Our Father for sure

  108. Prayerful says:

    A Pride Parade in San Francisco is less gay.

  109. Kathleen10 says:

    Thanks for posting this Fr. Z. The comments alone were well worth having to endure 1:50 seconds of this, or whatever it was. I hope nobody posts and says how we are being mean-spirited. There is nothing mean about identifying the profane or ridiculous, and laughter is often the best medicine. I’m fairly certain we all need to laugh more in this ridiculous world.

  110. Ipsitilla says:

    This brings to mind a parody I wrote some years ago:

    I danced in the morning
    When the Mass was begun
    I danced in the aisles
    As the folk tunes were sung
    I danced near the altar
    Where I knew I’d be seen
    With my flowered wreath
    And my tambourine

    “Dance, dance, you know that I must be
    The Queen of Liturgical Dance”, said she
    “I mix burlesque with sacred liturgy,
    And I’ll do it all as I dance,” said she

    I pranced ‘round the pulpit
    With my dancing group
    Next week I just might
    Bring my hula hoop
    I hear that the Vatican
    Would like to see me gone
    But I still dance
    With my stretch pants on

    The Church said my dancing
    Was out of place
    It’s hard to dance
    With Arinze on your case
    They call me a hippie
    But I don’t care
    My balance improves
    With centering prayer

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