Mass in English.. OMG…
Sunday is a great day to enjoy fellowship, especially when you have a great group of talented friends. With their suggestions and warnings, I went to Filipino English Mass today. The reason that I went to English mass was that I wanted to accompany one of my friends who just came to Shanghai from St.Louis. I was late again..because my friends told me the wrong time. When I came in, it was the time for homily. The great priest used time different ways of Chinese-English to tell us again and again that God is Love….this is the only and the most important point for today, and for… every week’s homily….
The Filipino English Mass is definite the XXX style. The reason why we called it Filipino English mass is because the the majority people there are Filipinos and they import their music and style of mass here and I hope that they do not really represent the standards of “Filipino Catholics”. The priest is fine, but the music was really crazy and they used all the instruments which they could find including drums.
After I told my friend about this in our chatting group, my friends showed empathy by telling me that not only the English mass, but also the Masses in “Italian” “German” and “French” are all the same around China. Our priests do sometimes offer mass in English, but the rest, Italian, German and French are not our business. Their own priests do that.. Somehow, I really want to ask.. what is wrong with the world….
Vespers and Compline
Since I arrived Shanghai, Sunday Vespers becomes my favorite part of the entire week. We have a lot of talented friends. Today, one of our friends come to give us instruction about how to sing the vespers better. He has lived with SSPX for couple months to discern his religious vocation, but no worries, he is dating now…hahahha….we have all kind of funny friends.
After we finished singing the vespers and compline. He told us that we have to stop between the two sentences for 3 second to say father.. in our heart and we have to sing “Gloria Patria Filio” , extra slowly in order to think about what we believe in. He also helped us to correct a lot of pronunciation of sentences and fix some notes. He wants to give us a lot of lesson about how to sing chants.. and we will definitely have more lessons in the future.
What he said is really helpful, though.. he is funny..lol.. At the end of our prayers, priest came in. since I have to leave Shanghai tomorrow and might not have easy access to confession, so I went to him for confession and blessing..
Funny part… P: Please read the act of contrition..
I:….er.. O, my God… I am sorry for having offended thee.. ( I recite that in English.. I cannot remember the Chinese version at all..!!!!!… OMG)
After confession, since the priest did not wear the stole.. my friends began to discuss whether this is proper or not and whether it will make my confession invalid.. How much I wish all the priest could be like our great spiritual director. When I say that I want to have confession, he can take out his purple stole immediately from his pocket. .. unfortunately I am in Shanghai now.. in a historical Jesuit dioceses
Gathering at Paulaner
Paulaner is the best German restaurant in Shanghai …super expensive, but on Sunday, it is half the price, so we choose to go there afterwards for gathering.. Guys had beer, but I have to drive so I can only have soft drink…sad…We also have some German food. We tried to figure out how to order in German.. but they only have one German waitress, which does not give a chance to try at all.
Before the dinner, we have blessing in Latin and we required one of our friends to stand up to serve the dinner by reading the Rule of St. Benedict. Then one of our guys did do that by reading the English version in Latin pronunciation. Then we began to chat about the history, liturgy, eastern and western rites.
During the dinner, we also made fun of all the popular music used in liturgy these days. We found it become too easy to make a liturgical music these days. We tried different melodies of popular music and found that they all could become music used in mass if their words are changed and majority of them are used these days in our mass which is kind of crazy.
During the entire dinner, God forgive us, we had already written more than 3 sets of mass music..lol…
After dinner, the guys tested each other to see whether they have got drunk by making each other recite the Nicene Creed , of course in Latin.. I cannot even recite the Credo in Latin without drinking… But they could do that not only in Latin and in other languages in eastern rites.
This morning, we made fun of our selves and one of my friends suggests that we should call our group ” Minor fratres Paulanri..” It has a strong possibilities that the name of this German restaurant came from a early age monastery..”
Walking between the modern skyscrapers, singing the chants, we just cannot say more how happy we are as the children of God.But at the same time, we feel so sad that we are like the sheep without a good shepherd. Dear Lord, our dearest Father, please help us. We lay all our trust in You!