Letters to the Editor

Funeral vs. Funereal

Dear Editor: While there always seem to be ongoing debates and dissents regarding liturgy, I wish to give our diocese credit where it is outstandingly due. During the past two weeks, I had the unusual experience of being closely involved in three funerals. In each instance, there was a close community of mourners with a history of identification with the Church.

The first followed the death of a dear friend’s adult son. It was the smallest of the gatherings and for me, the saddest. Yet this “ordinary” Mass of the Resurrection was truly that: the words of the liturgy were perfect but the music especially so. The aching hearts that had come together that morning appeared to have been gotten ”en-courage-ment” to step forward afterwards, nourished with the Eucharist in the entirety of the sacrament.

The other two occasions occurred in other dioceses and were funereal. I felt that the mourners were made to suffer even further because of heavy, plodding dirges from antiquated church organs that threatened to suck the very air from our souls. To endure this when the Mass and music of the Resurrection can be such a gift to heavy hearts, felt like a veritable stone door to a hopelessly closed tomb.

For every time that the Brooklyn Diocese blesses our sorrow in this way, I give deep and heartfelt thanks.



3 thoughts on “Funeral vs. Funereal

  1. How can an organ be antiquated? How can anything be antiquated? Do you have contempt for the people of the past? Is that in any way Christian?

  2. Perhaps those readers who are criticizing Ms. Cleary’sletter are missing thd mount of her comments. I believe she is commending our diocese for its beautiful interpretation of the Liturgy of the Resurrection.

  3. Ms. Cleary’s statement is not a fair one to make. One cannot make a generalization like this. I do feel badly that she had the experience she did.

    Her statement is similar to the adage “the computer made the mistake”

    Pipe Organs played by a well trained organists are inspiring, uplifting and beautiful. I agree that someone who doesn’t know how to play one or doesn’t prepare their music can sound terrible.

    Pipe Organs can make every sound imaginable. It is a shame few people today have the experience of hearing great organists on a regular basis.

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