You wouldn't think it was hard, and when I look out across the sea of faces, most of them (60%?) are making admirable attempts, and I'm so proud of them.
Of the other 40%, I'd say you have the group that's your typical totally apathetic "I don't care at all what happens, you could start screaming and jumping up and down and I'd probably still ignore you, I'm just here cuz I have to be..." and they comprise about 30% of the congregation. And, ok, fine, I admit. They are pretty much a hopeless cause. It's sad, but I don't lose sleep over them.
But...it's the final, remaining 10% of people that really get to me. I'm standing up there, and they're looking back at me, and I can see what they're thinking; they're like, "I'm not going to sing in Latin. I'm not even going to try. It's probably toooo haaaard! So I'm not even going to open the hymnal and at least pretend to look at it..."
(and don't accuse me of judging them cuz I of course can't actually read their thoughts--but I can certainly see that they aren't trying!)
And the thought occurred to me, the most recent time that I was up there, trying to teach them, looking into their faces...
"YOU! You all are the exact ones who have been clamoring the loudest for 'active participation' for the last 40 years! And yet look at you! I could just have the choir sing all the time, but oh boy, I wouldn't hear the end of that... So now I'm trying to make it so you can sing easily; I'm doing everything that I can so that this tiny, little, two-line snippet of music could be easy for you!"
The...irony? They don't really care about active participation...or, at least, not when there's any Latin or something else that might stretch them uncomfortably even a little bit...