I accidentally went to church the other day. I was only expecting to go to a christening but apparently these days at St Brendan’s you get the baptism super-sized to include a mass at no extra charge.
Mass ain’t what it once was. They (well this branch of the Catholic church) seem to have taken a leaf out of those funky fundamentalists book. There were lots of musicians and some people parading stuff up the aisle. Weirdest thing was the altar boys weren’t. Some were girls. Apparently they are now all called altar servers, or, as my dad pointed out, in the case of girls they are alter serviettes. Perhaps the greatest moment was the opening hymn. I have no idea what it was but the tune was ‘Go West’ – at first a Village People classic and more recently covered by the Pet Shop Boys. It was all I could do to stop myself doing the actions from the Petty’s video clip.
The strangest thing for me was that I wanted the mass to be like it was when I was a boy. Less ‘involvement’ from those present, altar boys only, no Village People covers – just a guy standing up there being all somber. Retro religion for an agnostic? Who ever would’ve thunk.
Rae though had the observation of the day. She turned around to have a look at the congregation and said “no one’s smiling”. Sad really.