About this blogger:
Cynthia Ostrowski holds a bachelor's degree in Geographic Information Science and a minor in Computer Science from Texas A&M University Corpus Christi (2005). She is currently a stay-at-home mother of two children. A former GIS analyst, Cynthia's interests include photography, french horn, and singing polyphony.
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The effectiveness of liturgy does not lie in experimenting with rites and altering them over and over, nor in a continuous reductionism, but solely in entering more deeply into the word of God and the mystery being celebrated. It is the presence of these two that authenticates the Church's rites, not what some priest decides, indulging his own preferences.
— Liturgicae Instaurationes (1970)

Permission Needed to Replace the Propers?—(6 of 7)
published 1 March 2015 by Cynthia Ostrowski

217 Children Beach OU HAVE PROBABLY noticed I don’t weigh in on complex questions of liturgical music. I lack expertise 1 in that area. However, at various times in my life, I’ve attended Mass where the music sounded peculiar. To my ear, it often sounds “secular” (if that makes sense) and inappropriate. The early 2000s—when I attended college—now seem like a different lifetime, but I remember my classmates composing their own songs (with their own lyrics) and performing them during Mass, without any permission from the bishop. They are still doing this, although I have a question about how long they will be considered “hip.”

I may not have grasped the full import of Mr. Craig’s article, but I did read it. From what I can understand, people are replacing the official Church texts without sufficient clearance from the bishop.

I feel relieved, in a certain sense: the instances I mentioned earlier are against the rules. On the other hand, I feel confused: why doesn’t someone put a stop to this? I don’t want my family attending Masses where irreverent songs are used because I believe children instinctively “sense” when the liturgy is not celebrated in a dignified manner.

Where does this need come from; a need for everything to be new and created with haste? Why is so little consideration given to the ancient prayers which served satisfactorily for so many centuries? Like the waves of the ocean, the next generation rises and falls. Before we know it, our children will be running the show. Let’s teach them to value Sacred music treasury extolled by the Second Vatican Council.


1   My focus is mainly on religious art and photography—areas in which I do have training.

This article is part of a series:

Part 1 • Richard Clark

Part 2 • Veronica Brandt

Part 3 • Andrew Leung

Part 4 • Dr. Lucas Tappan

Part 5 • Andrew Motyka

Part 6 • Cynthia Ostrowski

Part 7 • Aurelio Porfiri