And yet, we too are musicians with tender hearts. Parishioners who comment negatively about what we do can get under our skin like no one else."
-J. Tucker, Sacred Music, Winter 2007
Well, it finally happened. I received a personal attack on my music (singing chant) which also included a personal attack on my character. Certainly inevitable in this church situation where feelings are strong in either direction about true Sacred Music versus "contemporary-feel-good-about-myself" music in church, as well as anything which involves the liturgy and those two camps.
I won't go into detail about the circumstances, as I am not sure how much I am at liberty to say, but basically an anonymous comment was received attacking (in particular) the singing of the introit by myself and a friend (which I had written on here about earlier and we ended up doing for one Mass of Holy Family and the Vigil of MMOG,) and it didn't just attack the fact that it "prevented" the congregation from singing, but it went so far as to make personal accusations against me. There were other comments received about the same thing, another anonymous and somewhat nasty, and one more reasonable that was not anonymous, that brought up the standard points against not allowing the congregation to sing.
Hence, the appropriateness of the quote above.
And I should be rejoicing because of this personal persecution, right? (of course, my boss says with a good heart, "yeah, now you get to experience a tiny drop of what some of these people have given to me over the past couple years...")
And I do sincerely believe that I should be glad for this slight suffering, because I believe that what I am doing is helping to further the Kingdom of God, BUT...I still have so many questions.
...like, for example, I was having a conversation last night with (the sister of someone who reads this blog, and I dearly love her,) and she of course asked why I was a little down, so I had to tell her this story, and she can see the other side of the story. "Well, I would rather sing the songs...I would rather participate in that way!" (then she went on to say that's why she prefers St. C to St. T...) And this summarizes my problem, which hurts at this point!
What am I doing when good people; excellent Catholics, can't appreciate the good of what I am trying to do? It's enough to not make me want to even sing the Communion Antiphon anymore! (again, see quote above as it applies to "many positive comments, but just one negative...") And now I'm even getting persecuted for it! I should just go off and get some nice cushy job where I just do what everyone wants and not worry about anything. (Oh wait, that's not possible...)
(oh, boo hoo...hear the tiny violins playing in the distance...)