The Amused Reader

Jay Leno's way of reading the Readings was not universally appreciated...

Some weeks ago I was at a Novus Ordo Mass in a well-known London neighbourhood, and an oldish woman started with the readings.

She probably had heard too much about they “joy” filling the heart of every Catholic, because she started reading with such a diverted tone you would have thought she was telling a joke. “Mussolini, Hitler and Stalin sit near each other in an aeroplane….”. Exactly that tone, only it was the Old Testament she was reading.

I was not the only one noticing the incongruence, because looking around I saw some ironic smirking. The good woman was doing her best, no doubt; and as for her feeling oh so very special, she was certainly not worse than every other indulging in such post-V II exercises.

Still, I thought this was another reason to leave something as important as the Mass as far as possible in the hands of the professionals. Involuntary comedy is still rather too comedic for something as serious as the Mass.



Posted on April 22, 2013, in Catholicism and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. The handbook for lectors here in the states has them reading with such an odd, peculiar cadence I just want to cringe, scream, and throw something. It is absolutely unbearable. Some lectors simply ignore the recommendations, but others (mostly women, I’m sad to say, drink the Kool-Aid and carry out the diktat with abandon–more rotten fruit of the Post Vatican II set). One day all this silliness will pass away, but alas, I will probably be gone, too. On the other hand, perhaps I’ll be in the company of the angels and saints. Can only hope.

    • You might try throwing a Roman Missal? 😉

      Yes, I think women are more often than men the source of problems in this respect, as the effeminate post-Vatican II panders to emotionalism a lot, with which the naturally more emotional women are more likely to resonate.

      I don’t think there is a solution for this other than the priest or you going elsewhere. Again, the V II system of lay councils and assorted busy-boding organs makes it very difficult for a priest without a good set (= most of them) to react to the praxis.


  2. I was away at my parents’ house and went to a parish, not their normal, for mass this past Sunday morning. Beautiful, architecturally traditional church, and the closest to the house I just purchased there to move into next winter. Both older lady lectors used the exact same style to read as you mention and Akita-ette further describes. I felt like we were at a broadway play. It was absolutely grating, like nails on a chalkboard. Between that and the super-fun rockband “choir” playing good times tunes, I will not be joining this one once moved. I won’t have my son growing up to this nonsense.

  3. Comedian Des Bishop’s bit on his over-enthusiastic lectoring as a teenager in Boston – slamming shut the lectionary as he intoned “The Word of The Lord!” – has brought a smile or two in the past. These days I find lay readers in the Novus Ordo an irritant at the best of times.

    When the epistle is read in Latin from the horn of the altar, or chanted according to the required tone, there is, as with the rest of Sancta Missae, zero room for “interpretation” – which makes one wonder, was this perhaps the reason for such strictures in the first place? Something about the requirements of divine worship eclipsing the personalities involved? Fascinating possibility..

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