After a great weekend, I thought I would catch up on some miscellany today.
First, my lovely wife Sharon and I attended the Munich Symphony’s performance of Mozart’s Requiem on Friday at the Cathedral. The concert was very well attended, and the music was very fine. Phillipe Entremont conducted, and also played piano for Mozart’s Piano Concerto no. 12. I thought that with the echo-y acoustics at the Cathedral, the tempo during the Requiem was a little fast, and the big choral sections got a little jumbled. But that is a mere quibble. The soloists were all fantastic.
Dr. Horst Buchholz, the Director of Sacred Music for the Cathedral, introduced the Requiem, and I have to give him credit. He emphasized that the Requiem is not just a piece of music, but is a Mass, and moreover the Mass for the dead. He invited the audience to read the words of the prayers of the Mass as the piece was played, and also reminded them to pray for the dead in November, the month of the holy souls. His words added the necessary solemnity for a concert in a sacred space.
This was a good move, as sitting behind us was a gentleman who, prior to the concert, was speaking to his date about the Requiem, the words of which were printed in the program. He wondered what language it was. First he thought Italian, but maybe Latin, though it “didn’t look like Latin”. Finally, he concluded that it was either Italian or German.
I don’t repeat this story to criticize him for not knowing Latin, but to highlight the fact that the Church really didn’t hand down her liturgical patrimony very well after the Council of 1962-65. You see, this Mass setting, composed in the Eighteenth Century, obviously would have been in Latin. Sacrosanctum Concilium did direct that Latin be retained, did it not? At the very least, one might have been aware that Masses were allowed to be, and used to be, in Latin, yes? If Latin had been retained, then even a non-Catholic would have been aware that Catholics’ liturgies were in Latin. Well, it is what it is. Perhaps the most astounding part is that someone could confuse Italian with German.
The best part of the evening is that I got to spend time with my children’s homeschool teacher, whom I discovered is also my wife. Dinner and a concert while the children were in the good hands of my eldest daughter– very nice.
On Saturday, I finally got to confession, and so was able to try to obtain a plenary indulgence for some recently deceased family by visiting a cemetery before November 8 is past.
Sunday brought the high point of every weekend– High Mass at St. Francis de Sales Oratory. Canon Avis had a great sermon; I always know it’s good when I think that I am in big trouble for how I am most of the time.
Finally, I got to see the Rams find a new and creative way to lose a game.
And this morning, in keeping with thoughts of the holy souls, I was privileged to serve a daily Mass for the Dead in the Extraordinary Form. Pretty good weekend, all told.
Hope yours was great, too!