Yesterday, we attended a Tridentine Low Mass that a parish near us has on First Fridays. I have been meaning to do this since September but never have gotten around to it. It is at 7:30p.m. Just Will and I went. That fact alone made me feel very blessed. How many people have a 16 year old who voluntarily wants to attend a Latin Mass with you on a Friday night? Praise God!
Anyway, we got there a few minutes late, unfortunately. Must. work. on. punctuality. I am habitually 5 or 10 minutes late for everything it seems. The number of attendants was quite small and the church so quiet. I was terrified my stomach would growl loudly!!!! It took me a while to find my place in the missal provided. Since it was a Low Mass it didn't have any of that glorious music that made the High Mass so sublime. I found it awkward and kind of uncomfortable, truthfully. I know that it probably takes some getting used to and also perhaps a better frame of mind than I had last night. During the Mass three different cell phones rang! I couldn't believe it! It was quite mortifying. One could only be glad the priest was turned away from the congregation so that he couldn't send a withering glance at the perpetrators.
We saw our Latin teacher there! Her son was one of the altar boys.
The Low Mass, from what I gather and what I experienced last night, is a time for quiet prayer and meditation and worship. It does not have the feel of a seder Passover dinner which I feel the Novus Ordo mass conveys so well. I have to say that I can appreciate both types of Mass and don't favor one over the other. I have always loved any kind of Mass. To me it is all about the Eucharist and all the other stuff surrounding it is just trappings. Sometimes beautiful, sometimes amateur, sometimes well meaning but missing the mark.
I like the Novus Ordo. I like that it goes back to the roots of the Last Supper Passover meal. I like the congregation participating. I like, dare I say it, the 'community' feel to it.
I like the Latin Mass too. I like the richness of Catholic heritage and tradition it honors. I love that it is in Latin. I appreciate its aesthetic appeal.
But I can't say right now that I'm in one camp or the other when it comes to the different liturgies. I think they both have their place in Catholic worship.