Youth Sunday 2008

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Nick Baty
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Youth Sunday 2008

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docmattc
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by docmattc »

I had a look at them yesterday, and I wondered if whoever has put them together has ever read any Catholic document on liturgy. Looking at the pdf just now though, I note that some of most liturgically abusive suggestions seem to have disappeared. If I was a teenager though I'd find it very patronising, it leaves much to be desired.
There is still a suggestion elsewhere on the site to make vestments. The yellow rag illustrated hardly "contributes to the beauty of the sacred action" (GIRM 336)
I'm particularly amused by the suggestion to use Helium balloons. Helium is a non-sustainable, non-renewable resource. It shouldn't be wasted on balloons when its needed in MRI scanners. The planet has only about a 10 year supply left folks, get on that NHS waiting list now!

Slightly off topic, but I'm uncomfortable with the idea of 'Youth Sunday' anyway. Having to have a 'Youth Mass' is in itself an admission of failure, an admission that we are failing to involve these people in the Sunday Mass generally, but that's OK because we can let them read once a year, or perform some sketch.

oopsorganist
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by oopsorganist »

I like the penitential rite and prayer of the faithful, think little of the mime and sketch stuff but basically it would be a good shaking up ........ Live Simply has not quite reached us yet, and may not do so before we are merged or other fate befalls the parish, or everybody dies.........I will give it to my younsters (3?) in music group to see what they think.......we have done things along these lines previous years, recycling mass and Fair Trade. The fair trade wrapper notice board was not well received.
Wait, I know, I'll knobble the local primary for a joint service.

Like the recycled robes idea though.

I know what you mean Doc about admission of failure with young. But maybe we should admit it. We fail to reach our young people. It should not mean making a mockery of the Liturgy, but it is theirs for the future which does not look bright just now in this spot.

You can't make an omelette without breaking eggs.

That said, I just didn't need any extra anything just at this moment in time. Thanks for drawing attention to the opportunity Nick and also, drat you!
uh oh!

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Tsume Tsuyu
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by Tsume Tsuyu »

IMHO, this isn't as bad as some people think. Okay, it's not great liturgy, but who celebrates great liturgy every week? I know that's what we should be striving for, but there are lots of positives about young people coming together to plan a Mass and, if they follow this guide, they will at least be looking at the composition of the Mass and learning a little bit about how it's all put together and why we do and say what we do, and when. Many young people (and some not so young) are quite ignorant about the components of the Mass.

I agree that some of the suggestions are wacky, but many are perfectly reasonable. And they are not suggesting replacing any part of the Mass but, rather, embellishing it to reflect their theme.

I take your point about having 'youth' masses, but this is actual Youth Sunday; that's slightly different. And, for what it's worth, I think we are failing our young people on the whole. If we weren't, we wouldn't be losing so many of them when they leave school. I'm not saying that the answer is lots of youth masses, not at all, but ignoring the problem is not the answer either.

I often use resources from various websites as a basis for liturgies including Mass. I certainly wouldn't ever use something like this in its entirety, but rather pick and choose bits to incorporate - as the notes suggest. We have to hope that there are good liturgists in all parishes who will guide young people who might be planning for such a mass; I'm concerned that may not be the case and a bad liturgist will not see the problems with some of what is propounded. I realise it follows then, that if the original suggestions were rather more liturgically sound in the first place, that would be helpful.

Maybe there's a role for the Society here (as we've discussed off-forum, Doc). We could offer the services of the Society to advise, but whoever from among the membership takes on the job would have to be prepared for there to be some compromise. One can't pull the rug out from under people; change and improvement are things that come over time.
TT

docmattc
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by docmattc »

Tsume Tsuyu wrote:IMHO, this isn't as bad as some people think.

No, its worse. I'm not even clear who this stuff is aimed at. To me 'Youth' means secondary school. Describing God as 'Brilliant' seems to me appropriate for five year olds, not fifteens.

Tsume Tsuyu wrote:Okay, it's not great liturgy, but who celebrates great liturgy every week? I know that's what we should be striving for

Yes we all fall short of the ideal, but suggestions coming from (or at least endorsed by) the Bishops conference should not set the bar so low. They should be setting a positive example, and the most charitable thing I can find to say about this is 'mediocre'. Saying "its not good, but then who is?" is just an excuse to do things badly.

Tsume Tsuyu wrote:I agree that some of the suggestions are wacky, but many are perfectly reasonable. And they are not suggesting replacing any part of the Mass but, rather, embellishing it to reflect their theme.

Or in some cases, miss the point of the theme. In the Penitential Rite for instance the assembly, gathered in God’s presence, recognises its sinfulness and confesses the mystery of Christ’s love. (from CTM). Does a list of 'Sorry Prayers' acheive this? I think not. Dressing the altar with a livesimply frontal turns the altar into a billboard for a particular view point (however valid that may be) and detracts from the mysteries celebrated on it.

Tsume Tsuyu wrote:We have to hope that there are good liturgists in all parishes who will guide young people who might be planning for such a mass; I'm concerned that may not be the case and a bad liturgist will not see the problems with some of what is propounded. I realise it follows then, that if the original suggestions were rather more liturgically sound in the first place, that would be helpful.

Exactly- there are not good liturgists in all parishes, not even 10% of them. It shouldn't be the the job of any of them anyway to have to debug bad liturgy suggestions that comes from apparently an official source. We should expect liturgically sound material in the first place. I think you have argued yourself around to my earlier point.

Perhaps on that Sunday I should live simply and walk to the church down the road, rather than drive across the city to the one I play at.

I'm not sure how much we should add extra themes to our Masses anyway. It strikes me that all this is trying to make 23rd November three different things: The feast of Christ the King, youth Sunday, and a green party convention are all competing for attention. Is it possible to do justice to all of these in the Sunday Mass? I think not again. A 'save the planet Mass' should be an seperate entity. The Sunday Mass should first and foremost be the celebration as listed in the Ordo, other themes can be alluded to, but shouldn't dominate.

oopsorganist wrote:I know what you mean Doc about admission of failure with young. But maybe we should admit it.
We should admit it, and do something about it on an ongoing basis. Youth Sunday is all to often an opportunity to patronise the kids by allowing them to be involved in order that we can feel OK about giving them the cold shoulder for the other 51 weeks of the year. But the issue of our youth is off topic (I know I started going OT), Nick asked about our opinions to these resources particularly.

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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by docmattc »

oopsorganist wrote:That said, I just didn't need any extra anything just at this moment in time.

The ignore it completely. None of these extra theme, Sea Sunday, prisoners Sunday, youth Sunday, green Sunday, education Sunday, etc etc ad nauseam have any obligatory status within the liturgy.

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mcb
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by mcb »

Doc, I've looked at the materials for National Youth Sunday, and I can't see as much as you evidently do that gives cause for concern. For sure, if the benchmark is fastidious adherence to rubrics, there are things here to make anyone wince. But there's more to it than that - other valid aims for the celebration that is the source and summit of everything we're here for.

Among these aims is evangelisation, and it seems to me that saying things differently sometimes can be an effective way of getting the message across. For 'saying' here, read 'doing' too. I know I'm in no position to see inside the minds of the young, but I can speak from my own experience from long ago. I can recall once upon a time acting in a (jokey) sketch about the parable of the talents at age seventeen, and engaging in heated debate about the nature of faith at age 20, each time in place of the homily in a Mass. (The former on a retreat led by Damian Lundy at Kintbury; the latter in weekly Masses in college rooms.) Neither activity was strictly in accord with the norms for celebrating the Mass, but both were faith-building experiences. Perhaps that's what the NYS liturgy might achieve too?

On top of which there's some good liturgical catechesis in there. Ideally of course, the psalm should be sung, it says. Tell that to a parish priest who lives not two hundred yards from where I do! Preparation is essential in the presentation of any liturgy. How many adults approach their liturgical roles with that in mind?

I've never addressed God as "brilliant" before, but it seems to me that the word encapsulates something of the superlative, both in God's majesty, and our own quivering gob-smacked reverence before him. This Sunday's responsorial psalm says sing a new song to the Lord. Perhaps some of the suggestions for NYS invite us to do just that?

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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by docmattc »

mcb wrote: if the benchmark is fastidious adherence to rubrics, there are things here to make anyone wince.

I'll grant you that it is much improved from yesterday's version, which didn't even appear to have a passing aquaintance with the rubrics never mind fastidious adherence. The benchmark is joyful celebration and prayerful reverence, to my mind much of what is suggested detracts from that.

mcb wrote:Among these aims is evangelisation, and it seems to me that saying things differently sometimes can be an effective way of getting the message across. For 'saying' here, read 'doing' too.

But what is the message we're supposed to be getting across? The only sins that matter are against the environment? The Blessed Sacrament is on a par with fair trade chocolate? I agree that doing things differently is a good way to make people stop and think, but we need to be careful what they think after they stop.
mcb wrote: I can recall once upon a time acting in a (jokey) sketch about the parable of the talents at age seventeen, and engaging in heated debate about the nature of faith at age 20, each time in place of the homily in a Mass. (The former on a retreat led by Damian Lundy at Kintbury; the latter in weekly Masses in college rooms.)

But neither of these were the parish Sunday Mass, I have far less problem with doing things very differently at retreats, colleges etc. with a more, shall we say, 'select' group who are all 'up for it' (I wish I could think of a better term but you know what I mean :) ) I really think the Parish Sunday Mass shouldn't be used as a vehicle for peddling messages other than what is contained in the proper of the day. These extra things can be included (for instance included in, but not dominating, the prayers of the faithful, or drawn out in the homily if the readings allow it) but shouldn't take over. Much of what is suggested is obviously intended make the congregation go home with the message "This is reclaim the future Sunday", not, "This is the feast of Christ, our king". If we want Masses for particular themes, they should be outside the Sunday liturgy.

I know I'm being a grumpy old man here, but it really does irritate me when the liturgy is hijacked for any of these 'theme sundays', and as my place is always banging on about this particular one I sometimes wish they would change the record.

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VML
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by VML »

I'm inclined to agree with docmatt on this. I wish we could have one of the ordinary Sundays as Youth Sunday instead of it hijacking a feast as important as Christ the King.
We had a Live Simply Sunday here two weeks ago, for which I helped plan music, but then missed the day with a family emergency. PP said while we were planning that they were using a social justice version of the Creed, saying 'I know you don't like it, but we're using it...' It is not a case of what I like! :cry: :?
To be fair to him, when we did have an open meeting to discuss liturgy planning, and someone suggested themed Masses, he said that the set cycle of the Church is the theme.

Ros Wood
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by Ros Wood »

Youth Sunday on the feast of Christ the King is even more of an issue when you are the parish of Christ the King. Fortunately, I have won the battles so far in saying that in our parish Christ the King has to take precidence.

oopsorganist
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by oopsorganist »

Well doc
how can you be a grumpy old man? You must be a grumpy young man.
But as usual, mostly spot on about this and that.
My own oopsies say they are fed up with ecology and such, they say, we didn't make this mess, you did. So that in itself is good reason for not using Live Simply materials for a Youth Mass. I would add that if Social Justice only features once a year as an add on then things are going very badly and small wonder that young people are not with the church.
Young people have a burden which we do not understand in the same way. They are told when quite small, "Tin, plastic etc will run out in your life time, you need to recycle everything". It's not an optimistic world. Financial disasters and all that.
There is a gap between what they have as a future and our conscience about the mess the world is in.

I was pondering this shopping yesterday, town centre, evangelical young Christians were giving Free Hugs ( managed to avoid getting one) surrounded by five meat wagons! A few steps later I realised why, BNP were outside HMV faced off by Anti Fascist protesters. The meat wagons were not there for the Christians huggies. Makes a Live Simply creative Liturgy seem somewhat hollow and lacking in relevance.

But for sure schools work harder at such themes than the local Catholic parish. (Except for Doc.'s they seem more aware).

Take Fair Trade for example. Our Diocese is just moving into this. Some way behind what young people already know. And Morrisons. A bit behind Morrisons as it happens. But it's better than nothing.
And yet still I would consider using the materials or others from the Live Simply site. And using that Sunday for more youth participation. Even if it is the feast of Christ the King. Actually I can think of lots of reasons why that is a great Sunday to use. Christmas Day, that would be a good Sunday to use as well. Or Easter.
So all I need to do know is find some young people who have not already wandered off.

What Live Simply is doing is using public relations promotion strategies. That is the way this world works. Selling a brand.
But still I will try to do a little of this and probably do it badly, but it's better than nothing.
uh oh!

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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by HelenR »

I like many of the Resources in reclaim the future pack but as with any resource there are both good and bad and even the bad make me think about how we can adapt the idea to make it work in my parish.

But from Nick's original question there seems to be two other threads developing on these pages and I sufficiently agitated to want to have to reply to both. I am not a great liturgist or musician or even a very good Catholic but I do feel passionately about my church and strive more than anything to develop full active inclusive participation in any mass or service in which I have the honnour to be part of planning.

National Youth Sunday is not about "A youth mass", there are many ways in which the contribution of young people can be recognised and others can be encouraged. Some people are concerned that the Youth Sunday is confining Youth Acitivity to one Sunday a year _ it doesn't. I don't quite remember exactly when Christ the King was designated National Youth Sunday but I celebrated in Coventry that year and it was a real celebration of Youth contribution to weekly activity of our Parishes and an encouragement for further involvement. That there are no activities all year round in some places is not the reason to stop the one day a year when we encourage involvement. Instead use resources which have been developed by the people who are successful in engaging young people and see where it leads.

There is some concern about themes as Doc said
"that I really think the Parish Sunday Mass shouldn't be used as a vehicle for peddling messages other than what is contained in the proper of the day."
Am I the only one who thinks that the Gospel reading of the Parable of the Sheep and Goats is extremely relevant to a message of live simply. The people who are starving in this world or living in homelessness after flood and disasters are directly the result of our waste and I am sure that if the Gospel were being delivered today the goats would be those who ignored the message of Live Simply and continued to ignore fairtrade, recylcling and conservation efforts. Doc, when I am asked the question at the end of time I am not sure I can justify my trip in a car to a church - not my nearest (I do it too) - I hope the occasions when I am sheep not a goat will help.

Those who were present at the Summer school will have head Michael Joncas and Martin Jakubas put social justice at the very heart of what we do in celebrating the Eucharist and coming together as Christian community. Far from hijacking the message of this feast day LIVE Simply is showing us to fulfill it and lead us to the Kingdom.

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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by docmattc »

VML wrote: PP said while we were planning that they were using a social justice version of the Creed, saying 'I know you don't like it, but we're using it...' It is not a case of what I like! :cry: :?


This is one of my problem's with this stuff that comes from on high and takes liberties with the rubrics. It sends a message that actually we can do what we like, and we can't. I wouldn't advocate blindly following rubrics fastidiously for their own sake, although there is much to be said for following the rubrics, one can follow rubrics to the letter and still have poor liturgy. If I bend a rubric I have carefully considered why the rubric is there in the first place and why I've done so. As TT points out, people able to do this are few and far between (and I wouldn't say I'm an expert). Most people in parishes (including some clergy) aren't aware the rubrics exist in the first place.
HelenR wrote:National Youth Sunday is not about "A youth mass",

It shouldn't be but this is the reality in many places

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sidvicius
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Re: Youth Sunday 2008

Post by sidvicius »

I don't think it's really fair to comment on the resources without having tried them out, or at least shown them to a youth group to see what they think - they might be able to develop the ideas a bit, or just run with them. I sympathise with many of the views expressed here, but this is merely an additional resource which we can use if we want to.

My preference would be for a separate (additional) mass/service, with a strong focus on youth lead/preparation, but as with all such things it requires teamwork and assistance form other parts of the community. Personally I think when that happens it's a sign of a thriving community; it can be great fun and spiritually uplifting. If it doesn't, we may need to ask ourselves - 'why not?'

Involvement and utilisation of the energy of our younger congregation is really important if we want them to keep the faith. Obviously we need to set out a few 'dos and don'ts', but we also have to trust them to get involved and take on challenges, so they can really see that their christian input makes a difference.

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