Post 148

The Promotional Material for a Basilica Cash Event Shows
that Mortal Sin Is a Great Joke

Rossini - Petite Messe Sole_ - https___www.facebook.com_events_772632599502938_

I have just come off the Facebook Page promotion of yet another concert at the Basilica. The link was sent to me by one Ms Grigaitis, who seems to think I should fork out some cash. Once again, the Basilica is selling off the sanctuary, at $30 per ticket.

That’s not a surprise to my readers.

I thought that the pews-for-cash thing was as low as it could go.

Apparently I was wrong.

It gets worse.

At this point, people should start getting fired.

I would start with the music director, Roderick Bryce.

Consider the following description, from the Facebook page:

Gioachino Rossini: Petite Messe Solennelle

Sarah Schaub, soprano
Mairi Irene McCormack, mezzo soprano
Oliver Munar, tenor
Jihwan Cho, bass
Leanne Regehr, piano
N. Antonio Peruch, accordion
The Schola Cantorum of St Joseph’s Basilica
Roderick Bryce, director.

Described by the composer himself as “the last mortal sin of my old age”, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle is famously neither petite nor very solemn, but rather a tour de force of operatic vocal writing….

The Basilica’s own professional ensemble are joined by a stellar quartet of guest soloists and accompanied by the unusual and wonderful combination of piano and accordion.

Adults $30/Students & Seniors $20 /under 16s FREE
Tickets also available on the door (cash/cheque only)
Please note: tickets are NOT available from the Basilica Office

“The last mortal sin of my old age”?

Ha ha ha?

Excuse me?

Who designed this Facebook page? Fire that person too, if this person is on the parish or Archdiocesan payroll.

The Facebook page quotes Rossini who refers to music for a Mass as being a mortal sin? How can music for Mass ever be called a mortal sin? Is it humour? Is he saying that he did such a horrid job that it is somehow a sin? Is he saying that he deliberately made music which was entirely unsuitable for a Mass? Ha ha ha ha? Since when is mortal sin so entirely funny?

I am about as astounded as I can be. That is my lower jaw on the floor.

Is there truly, absolutely NOBODY HOME at the Basilica? In the Archdiocese?

Why won’t anybody do anything to stop this?

What does a person have to do to stop Roderick Bryce and his accomplices? They are changing the Basilica into a concert hall, and nobody is doing anything to stop it!

And what kind of photograph is that? The lovely mosaic, which adorns the wall behind the tabernacle itself has been overlaid, in this image for Facebook, with some black silhouette of some creepy weird art. What on earth?

Enough is enough!

Anyone who attended the Good Friday service has already seen the direction things were going. The whole service was so overtaken by the Schola, who sang almost exclusively in incomprehensible Latin, that no parishioner nor visitor could contribute to the music on the holy occasion.

Were you there?

Didn’t you hear how loudly the congregation boomed its voice through the spoken Our Father? Was that any wonder? Silenced for the rest of the service, the congregation finally was allowed a teeny tiny part.

How many hours was it? And yet we just couldn’t sing. 99% of us didn’t know Latin and as for the last 1%, how many knew the tune or could read the music well enough to participate? And out of that 1%, how many of them had access to the music sheets (assuming those sheets had the words)? After all, they ran out of them early.

And just for the record, I don’t attack Latin itself. (It’s the language I took in first year university because I was sick of all those years of French.) I also don’t attack the Latin Mass, though I think that some people are overly devoted to it, acting as though it is superior to the regular Mass. I think that those doily-things on top of the ladies’ heads too loudly proclaim the single vs married status (black if you’re taken and white if you’re available) in a way that nowadays is out of place. In olden times, points out WiseOne, one’s marital status was well known to the people in the immediate community, but nowadays, when the congregation can easily be a mix of strangers, these white-black head-coverings are just Too Much Information. (I especially dislike seeing those doily-things being worn at regular Masses. To my eye, they announce “Crazy Lady” like nothing else.)

But back to this “Festival of Sacred Music,” I note all the appalling circumstances. This “Schola” has been taught by Roderick Bryce, and Roderick Bryce, as far as I know, is already on the payroll of the Church. (Someone please correct me if I’m wrong.) I don’t know if he’s Catholic because his online biography shows a lot of work at random Protestant churches. Makes ya wonder.

Alright, so if he’s on the payroll, and part of his job is to direct this “Schola” (= singity club singing for cash) then why are we paying again so that we can have him direct a concert? Haven’t we paid him enough?

Let me get this straight.

The Basilica building itself belongs to the parish/Archdiocese.

The electricity, heating and so on and so forth are paid for by the parish/Archdiocese.

The “Schola” (= singity club) is composed of people who are paid to sing by the parish/Archdiocese.

The “Schola” (= singity club) rehearses, at no charge, on the Basilica premises.

The Music Director is paid by the parish/Archdiocese.

AND THEREFORE, the parishioners are expected to PAY, AGAIN


Adults: $30 “(cash or cheque only!)” notes Ms. Grigaitis in her email to me, in order to sit in the pews and listen to this concert.

What on earth is going on? Does anybody care? Is anybody listening?

But what troubles me most, this go ’round, is that the only words quoted from Rossini are these: “the last mortal sin of my old age.” Such words are used to PROMOTE this Basilica event?


Let me quote the whole sentence:

Described by the composer himself as “the last mortal sin of my old age”, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle is famously neither petite nor very solemn, but rather a tour de force of operatic vocal writing….

I do not have a font large enough to express my outrage.

Since when is it appropriate for the Basilica to “host” and promote an event where the featured composer has referred to his music for a Mass as a mortal sin?

This cries to heaven.

Disband “the Schola.”

Fire the “Music Director.”

As for Rossini, who spoke thus, shame on him!

The good news, for me, is that he’s already dead.

Spares me some trouble.