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While the Latin Mass brings unity -- and uniformity -- to the Catholic Church, do the modern American "Spanish" (Or other special language mass's separate and divide  parishes?

As a white American Catholic -- living in California towns with huge Hispanic populations -- I have had almost no contact with hispanic Catholics.  Even the Catholic socials seem to be divided.  There are separate Catholic social activities, and groups for the "Spanish speakers".

And it's about more than a language.  I have Hispanic friends who don't speak Spanish any better than I do -- and they attend the "spanish" mass.  It's their "culture".  I would bet that there are only a few people who attend the Spanish mass here who aren't absolutely fluent in english.

It's like there are two different seperate groups (Or even religions) who merely use the same building.

When a "representative" from the "spanish"  mass comes to the white people mass to invite people to come to one of the "spanish" (Mexican) Catholic activities there is always a little "racial" tension.  The "Mexican" guy is entering the white people world, and inviting them to something of the "Mexican" world. Culture shock?

I've gone to "Spanish" Masses -- by accident.  I was new in town and I went at the wrong time.  My Spanish isn't great but that's not really the problem.  I felt like everybody was looking at me funny. Like..  "What are you doing here?  You white people have your own masses.  Why are you are invading "our" Mass?!"

I've gone to Mass in Mexico.  No tension!  I was just an American Catholic going to Mass.  It wasn't like I was invading anything.  There were no separate "english" Masses.  So I was just a "Catholic" going to Mass.

I live in Escondido which has a huge hispanic population.  I am one of the very few white people at work.  How I got over feeling "uncomfortable" was to get to know everybody.  Pretty soon I know Jorge, and Juan, and Jose, etc.  And I found that they all spoke english.  The funny thing was that they would hold some of the safety meetings in English -- and some in spanish.  And everybody who attended the "spanish" meeting spoke english.  Is it a "cultural" thing?  Yes the supervisors who set up the meetings are hispanic Catholics.

It got me wondering if the Catholic Church is actually creating some of the division between the Mexicans and the "Americans" in this country.  Most Mexicans are Catholic. 

Would it be better if there was no "spanish" mass?  There would be no segregation.  The hispanic Catholics would have far more white Catholic friends -- even if they found the language challenging.  We would be more familiar and comfortable with the Mexican Catholic traditions as well.

If I were to move to Mexico would it be better for me attend a special "American" english Mass, or a regular Mexican Mass in Spanish?



An example 

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(02-09-2017, 02:57 PM)RichardP Wrote: [ -> ]While the Latin Mass brings unity -- and uniformity -- to the Catholic Church, do the modern American "Spanish" (Or other special language mass's separate and divide  parishes?

As a white American Catholic -- living in California towns with huge Hispanic populations -- I have had almost no contact with hispanic Catholics.  Even the Catholic socials seem to be divided.  There are separate Catholic social activities, and groups for the "Spanish speakers".

And it's about more than a language.  I have Hispanic friends who don't speak Spanish any better than I do -- and they attend the "spanish" mass.  It's their "culture".  I would bet that there are only a few people who attend the Spanish mass here who aren't absolutely fluent in english.

It's like there are two different seperate groups (Or even religions) who merely use the same building.

When a "representative" from the "spanish"  mass comes to the white people mass to invite people to come to one of the "spanish" (Mexican) Catholic activities there is always a little "racial" tension.  The "Mexican" guy is entering the white people world, and inviting them to something of the "Mexican" world. Culture shock?

I've gone to "Spanish" Masses -- by accident.  I was new in town and I went at the wrong time.  My Spanish isn't great but that's not really the problem.  I felt like everybody was looking at me funny. Like..  "What are you doing here?  You white people have your own masses.  Why are you are invading "our" Mass?!"

I've gone to Mass in Mexico.  No tension!  I was just an American Catholic going to Mass.  It wasn't like I was invading anything.  There were no separate "english" Masses.  So I was just a "Catholic" going to Mass.

I live in Escondido which has a huge hispanic population.  I am one of the very few white people at work.  How I got over feeling "uncomfortable" was to get to know everybody.  Pretty soon I know Jorge, and Juan, and Jose, etc.  And I found that they all spoke english.  The funny thing was that they would hold some of the safety meetings in English -- and some in spanish.  And everybody who attended the "spanish" meeting spoke english.  Is it a "cultural" thing?  Yes the supervisors who set up the meetings are hispanic Catholics.

It got me wondering if the Catholic Church is actually creating some of the division between the Mexicans and the "Americans" in this country.  Most Mexicans are Catholic. 

Would it be better if there was no "spanish" mass?  There would be no segregation.  The hispanic Catholics would have far more white Catholic friends -- even if they found the language challenging.  We would be more familiar and comfortable with the Mexican Catholic traditions as well.

If I were to move to Mexico would it be better for me attend a special "American" english Mass, or a regular Mexican Mass in Spanish?



An example 

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First of all, RP, you refer to the "Latin Mass".  Just to clarify, does that mean you attend a parish that has a Traditional Mass celebrated in Latin as well as a separate Spanish Mass?  Or, is it a Novus Ordo Mass celebrated in Latin with a separate Spanish Mass?  Or is it a N.O. Mass celebrated in English with a separate Spanish Mass?  Or...is it a Traditional "Latin" Mass celebrated in English...(which seems kinda weird)...?

I'm going to guess that the Spanish Mass you refer to is the N.O. Mass celebrated in Spanish.  I can't give you any kind of definitive answer but it seems to me that the Catholic Church here, especially in areas with large Hispanic populations, is doing what it can to get butts in the pews.  And, if that means celebrating Mass in Spanish, well....that's what they're gonna do.

I have no problem whatsoever with the liturgy (Western or Eastern) being celebrated in the "language of the people".  After all, what language did the very first Christians use?  Probably Aramaic or Greek, I would imagine.  I personally don't believe (gasp! shock! horror!) that celebrating a liturgy in Latin or Greek or Slavonic or English or Urdu makes it necessarily any more or any less "holy" or "sacred".  It might sound to someone's ear nicer in this, that, or the other language, but that has nothing to do with sacredness or holiness, imnsho.  In my own experience, knowing what the words of the liturgy mean in the language I speak every day aids me in concentrating on the liturgy and in praying.  God hears us no matter what language we speak or use liturgically.  In fact, I'm guessing He hears us even before we vocalize a single word!

Now...is the use of separate languages in the same parish for separate segments of the population divisive?  I think that pretty much depends on the pastor(s) and the parishioners.  It certainly can be, but it doesn't have to be.

Because in most Eastern rite parishes only a single liturgy is celebrated each Sunday, this doesn't become a problem.  Some of them celebrate part of the liturgy in English and part in Church Slavonic.  Some celebrate only in English, and some others only in Church Slavonic.  So...it obviates the need for separate liturgies, though a few parishes do have them--mostly Eastern Catholic, I believe, and not Orthodox.

Keeping segments of the population separate by virtue of their culture and language, even in church,  certainly can contribute to racial or cultural tensions.  You know...if you never mix with people of another culture their culture will almost always remain more or less alien to you, and yours to them.

It's understandable that people would want to celebrate the liturgy in a language that they are familiar with.  But...it won't, imnsho, help them assimilate into their new host culture.  If masses were only available in English (providing of course that they are not TLM's) there's a risk of losing people whose native language is not English to churches that are not Catholic.  On the other hand, if masses were on available in English that could go a long way, again depending on pastor and parishioners, to a greater integration of those whose native language is not that.

Seems like I've babbled on a bit here... :O :grin:  Hope I've made at least a little sense!


Disclaimer:  I can't stand the N.O. Mass in any language (though if it's chanted, which is *extremely* rare, it does become more tolerable), and when I'm able to attend liturgy it's almost exclusively Easter rite anymore.
Okay, there is so much to respond to this. Where do I start?

I suppose I'm more qualified to answer your question, so here goes:

1) "As a white American Catholic -- living in California towns with huge Hispanic populations -- I have had almost no contact with hispanic Catholics.  Even the Catholic socials seem to be divided.  There are separate Catholic social activities, and groups for the "Spanish speakers"."

Really? You haven't? You don't seem to get out much, then. OR... you live in an area where there are more Whites than usual and don't actively seek out different communities; it's a more plausible situation.

2) "And it's about more than a language.  I have Hispanic friends who don't speak Spanish any better than I do -- and they attend the "spanish" mass.  It's their "culture".  I would bet that there are only a few people who attend the Spanish mass here who aren't absolutely fluent in english."

This is true. Later generations tend to be more assimilated into American culture to the point that, unless their families try hard enough, they will lose a lot of familiarity with their heritage. One generation may only know Spanish (if not also a little bit of English), the next may be perfectly bilingual in both, while the later generation may only view themselves as an American that can only speak one language and claim only one culture.

3) " When a "representative" from the "spanish"  mass comes to the white people mass to invite people to come to one of the "spanish" (Mexican) Catholic activities there is always a little "racial" tension.  The "Mexican" guy is entering the white people world, and inviting them to something of the "Mexican" world. Culture shock?"

Try not to assume that they're all Mexican. There are 20 more countries that would share the same experience in a Spanish Mass. Also, there is such a thing as a *gasp* "White Mexican" (look up Louis CK). Hispanic/Latin American would be more accurate.

Anyway, I've never seen this happen, personally. There could be some kind of branching out from either communities in order to foster some kind of friendship. There is nothing wrong with that. Whether or not individuals are more sensitive about someone else belonging to "The Other" coming in and feeling unsure about how to respond to that varies in communities. A reasonable person would, after a moment of cautious curiosity, would decide if he/she thinks it's worth learning about a group of people who, while differing in general appearance, culture, and language, share a (supposedly) common Catholic Faith. If not, then the moment passes and life goes on.

3) "I've gone to "Spanish" Masses -- by accident.  I was new in town and I went at the wrong time.  My Spanish isn't great but that's not really the problem.  I felt like everybody was looking at me funny. Like..  "What are you doing here?  You white people have your own masses.  Why are you are invading "our" Mass?!""

Are you a mind reader? You don't know that for sure. Maybe they were surprised that someone that they haven't seen before decided to go to a mass where you would literally stand out from the majority. They probably would have welcomed you, given you a smile, and said hi. Either way, it's rude and stupid of them to think like that, if that's what they were actually thinking. The Mass is for everybody, regardless of what language it's in.

4) "I've gone to Mass in Mexico.  No tension!  I was just an American Catholic going to Mass.  It wasn't like I was invading anything.  There were no separate "english" Masses.  So I was just a "Catholic" going to Mass"

Mexico doesn't have that much awareness of race, by comparison. There have historically been significant populations of Afro Mexicans, White Mexicans, and other groups within Mexico but they generally don't define themselves by color; they're all Mexicans.

5) "I live in Escondido which has a huge hispanic population.  I am one of the very few white people at work.  How I got over feeling "uncomfortable" was to get to know everybody.  Pretty soon I know Jorge, and Juan, and Jose, etc.  And I found that they all spoke english.  The funny thing was that they would hold some of the safety meetings in English -- and some in spanish.  And everybody who attended the "spanish" meeting spoke english.  Is it a "cultural" thing?  Yes the supervisors who set up the meetings are hispanic Catholics."

I wouldn't know exactly why they do that. Maybe their English skills are not that strong and want to compare with their native tongue and see if they completely understand.

6) "It got me wondering if the Catholic Church is actually creating some of the division between the Mexicans and the "Americans" in this country.  Most Mexicans are Catholic. Would it be better if there was no "spanish" mass?  There would be no segregation.  The hispanic Catholics would have far more white Catholic friends -- even if they found the language challenging.  We would be more familiar and comfortable with the Mexican Catholic traditions as well."

As a Trad, I would argue that the "vernacularization" of the Mass has unintentionally created this problem. Given the differences between Anglo-Saxon and Hispanic cultures, misunderstandings can arise and bring about awkward moments between individuals who first meet up without ever learning about each other before. The Latin Mass, on paper, would bring about two different cultures together and avoid this situation. In terms of worship, the problem is... solved, to say the least.

7) "If I were to move to Mexico would it be better for me attend a special "American" english Mass, or a regular Mexican Mass in Spanish?"

Ha! Mexico feels no obligation to offer you a foreign mass to alleviate your sensitivity to your heritage, unless you and bunch of English-speaking expatriates request it to a bishop/priest and they grant it.

If you really do see the problems in that the Novus Ordo causes, directly or indirectly, in making it difficult for one culture to understand the other, then this could be your chance to get to know the Hispanic community where you live. Talk to them. Ask questions. Get involved in knowing their traditions. Maybe introduce them to the Latin Mass if they are curious enough.
My grandmother's parents were from Spain and she was born and raised in the Philippines.  And as she got older she much preferred the Spanish mass to the english.  Also she told me that she really couldn't pray in English. 

My sister-in-law is from Chile.  And I traveled to Chile for the wedding.  I don't think that the Chileans share the same Catholic traditions as my Mexican Catholic friends (Who I know from work).

The various Protestant churches that I tried did all of their services in English and seemed to have a much bigger church "community".  I even heard some Protestants arguing against "youth groups" on the grounds that it was healthier to worship and socialize as an entire church community.

The Catholic Church down here has "youth" groups, "young adult" groups (18-39), an "adult community (35-55), and an older adult group (55+).  Socializing between the groups seems to be forbidden.

I don't know the answers or what sorts of things would create a more inclusive Catholic "community". 

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I think your entire post is a testament to why we need to go back to the Traditional Latin Mass. I heard it once said (and I highly agree with this statement) that when you attend Mass in Latin, there is no room for doubt about who it is and what you are doing, when you are speaking in Latin, following the readings and responses in Latin: You are speaking to GOD! Your not muttering something to the guy next to you or daydreaming and event and whispering something about it. When you are at a Mass in the colloquial of any area, and not speaking Latin, you could be talking to anyone while at Mass. At a Latin Mass there is no mistake, your speech is in Latin and your words are directed to God and only him.

Whether or not you speak Spanish or Goolagong, if the Mass in the common language of the area or used at Mass and from another area, it is still a common, colloquial speech and not exclusive of all others as Latin would be.
I think you gave part of the solution to your situation when when you said;

I live in Escondido which has a huge hispanic population.  I am one of the very few white people at work.  How I got over feeling "uncomfortable" was to get to know everybody.  Pretty soon I know Jorge, and Juan, and Jose, etc.  And I found that they all spoke english.  The funny thing was that they would hold some of the safety meetings in English -- and some in spanish.  And everybody who attended the "spanish" meeting spoke english.  Is it a "cultural" thing?  Yes the supervisors who set up the meetings are hispanic Catholics.
It got me wondering if the Catholic Church is actually creating some of the division between the Mexicans and the "Americans" in this country.  Most Mexicans are Catholic. 

This is not a new issue. I think the situation is better than it used to be. In the past I heard stories about ethnic parishes where the priest would stand at the door and if you were not a part of their ethnic group he would not allow you to enter the church. In another incident there was a German language parish forming and the priest got up and said, "This parish is only for real German Germans. Anyone who is Austrian - German language is not welcome here. There was someone who was for many years away form the Church because of that.     
Of course vernacular-celebrated Masses divide, that is the intention.  When it was the TLM, it was in a 'dead' universal language; that favoured none (perhaps Spanish being so heavily-Latin derived) and it did not matter who you were, or where you were.  The Mass said in the little hovel mission in Kenya, was exactly the same being said in an underground area in red China, and you prayed with your brothers.

Now I attend a parish that has a Spanish Mass once a month during the regular afternoon Sunday schedule.  All non-Hispanics that aren't multiculturalists, know exactly what it is...a "Mexi-Mass" in which only caters and panders to a group of about maybe 10-15 Mexicans/Hispanics, out of a parish of over 1,000 families.

It does divide and only breeds contempt for these people, it would have been more charitable to setup ESL courses for free to help these people integrate and become a contributing member of society...now they are looked upon as a foreign race that receives special priviledges for simply refusing to be a part of civil society.


(02-10-2017, 01:06 AM)Poche Wrote: [ -> ]It got me wondering if the Catholic Church is actually creating some of the division between the Mexicans and the "Americans" in this country.  Most Mexicans are Catholic. 

No it's not the Church...it's many priests and bishops who are Left-minded and are bought by the Democrat party.  They love multiculturalism without caring for the damage it causes and the inherent risks it broods with balkanization.

Stupid naive people who are old enough and educated enough to know better...that's the fault.
Quote:I've gone to "Spanish" Masses -- by accident.  I was new in town and I went at the wrong time.  My Spanish isn't great but that's not really the problem.  I felt like everybody was looking at me funny. Like..  "What are you doing here?  You white people have your own masses.  Why are you are invading "our" Mass?!"

Our lily white Irish Catholic family attended a Spanish Mass and during the "Kiss of Peace" (this was before we started attending the TLM) we put our hands out to those around us and no one would shake our hands.  They were all shaking each others' hands with smiles and waves, but we were very clearly snubbed. :/

I read a while back about a parish in Missouri where they were having a difficult time with integrating the "two parishes", Hispanic and white.  Each had their own activities and Masses and the whites wanted to include the Hispanics more but the feeling was not reciprocated.  I know in generations past the push for keeping things segregated was probably in reverse, but I think this is the modern trend in racial relations here.

Quote:Ha! Mexico feels no obligation to offer you a foreign mass to alleviate your sensitivity to your heritage, unless you and bunch of English-speaking expatriates request it to a bishop/priest and they grant it.

How do they get away with that while the US is skewered for not making sure every single nationality is accommodated?

Quote:While the Latin Mass brings unity

I hadn't really thought about this before, but I really believe you are on to something here.  Our TLM parish has such a wonderful mix of nationalities and I was so thankful that my kids could grow up knowing kids from different heritages.  Our Mass united us in worship and fellowship afterwards. 

We learned about the different cultures, however, by celebrating the feast days of saints in cultural style with families bringing food and dances from around the world. :)




(02-10-2017, 06:54 AM)austenbosten Wrote: [ -> ]Of course vernacular-celebrated Masses divide, that is the intention.  When it was the TLM, it was in a 'dead' universal language; that favoured none (perhaps Spanish being so heavily-Latin derived) and it did not matter who you were, or where you were.  The Mass said in the little hovel mission in Kenya, was exactly the same being said in an underground area in red China, and you prayed with your brothers.

>>>Now I attend a parish that has a Spanish Mass once a month during the regular afternoon Sunday schedule.  All non-Hispanics that aren't multiculturalists, know exactly what it is...a "Mexi-Mass" in which only caters and panders to a group of about maybe 10-15 Mexicans/Hispanics, out of a parish of over 1,000 families.<<<

It does divide and only breeds contempt for these people, it would have beMy en more charitable to setup ESL courses for free to help these people integrate and become a contributing member of society...now they are looked upon as a foreign race that receives special priviledges for simply refusing to be a part of civil society.

I've seen this first-hand. There is a basilica that I went to for their TLM and then, one Sunday, I found out that they would have the third or fourth Sunday of the month reserved for the celebration of a Spanish Mass for just a handful of individuals.

It wasn't until recently that I found out that they discontinued it but kept the Spanish Mass in place.

This was my reaction:

And then I found out it was because the priest was no longer in good health to do so. :(
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