Monday 11 April 2005

The way forward?

As a non-practising Anglican singing in the Latin Mass choir at a Catholic church, I find that I have mixed views on the possible changes in the Papacy following on from Pope John Paul II's death.

On the one hand, I have a number of friends in the Latin mass society, I sing regularly at Sunday morning Latin mass and have sung at a number of Tridentine masses. I am therefore sympathetic to the desires for a new Pope who will strengthen the church's committment Latin mass. Someone who will try an stem the tide of musical dross which is threatening to overwhelm us and encourage, again, the use of real music within the church's liturgy.

On the other hand, as a gay man and a protestant, I am aware that if such a Pope is elected, then his general policies will be rather inimical to me; representing as they will the more conservative wing of the church. It always saddens me that within our Western Christian churches the more liberal tendencies (or however you want to describe them) always seem to be associated with populist movements in music and liturgical reform, turning their backs on traditional forms rather than revitalising them.

This is a conundrum that has no easy solution and I suspect that whomsoever is elected Pope in the coming weeks, he will have his work cut out.

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