16 May 2013

Blog Day: Part the Eleventh: Bringing people back

This is something I have been thinking about ever since I posted on St John Cantius in Chicago, and St Peter's in Omaha.  I have repeatedly watched the videos I linked to there.  One thing that has struck me is that they they say that anyone can do what they have done, in a sort of "if you build it, they will come" way.  They also speak of how people come to them and talk about how much better the way Mass is done at these places than it was at their old church.  That's one of the things I have been pondering.

A few weeks back there was an article (can't find the link now, saw it on other blogs.) about nuns, where one "expert" said that returning to the old habits will not necessarily mean more nuns, everywhere, just the same number of nuns spread out, as the number of women who wish to get into that sort of thing is a very "small pool." 

Most conservative Catholics derided these comments, but I wonder.  Is there something to what the expert has said?  Are these communities bringing people back, or are they bringing in people already so inclined?  Are churches like Cantius and St. Peter's filling their churches by bringing people back, or by bringing them over from other parishes, filling their pews by emptying another's?

Just wondering.


Patience said...

It's a possibility, by going to the Oratory; we're one less family at the home parish. However; maybe there's families who live in the Oratory parish who travel to a less conservative church or even an ethnic one. I have one relative who lives closer to SVDP but instead goes to St Joan of Arc. But for the nuns and priests; one sees these habited communities with really young members and the non habited communities where the majority of members are in the 60 and up club. You would think that if it was spread around; it would at least be a 50/50 split.

Bear said...

I don't think so. As an experiment, dropping the habit was an utter bust. It is clear no one wants to join those orders. So the only orders that women join are the habitted ones. The question then becomes that, if, as seems a possibility there are more habitted orders, will it mean larger orders full of nuns, or will it mean that the orders will remain small, as there are only so many women willing to become nuns.

As for SVDP and St Joan- I know what you are talking about. My experience around here has been the opposite of what I am told is happening in the States. The closest church, the one I should be attending, is a very liberal parish. The one decoration every church is supposed to have is a crucifix, but, as of the last time I was there, there was none in the entire church. The processional cross was two intersecting rainbows. The priest fiddled endlessly with the liturgy, inventing new ceremonies and changing words. The building was ugly. Yet it was full, with people crowding and standing in the back.