Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Why Children's Choirs Suck

"Jesus said, 'Let the little Children come unto Me and do not hinder them - for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these'" - This is the anticipated response from the emotion-driven powers that be if I were to try and explain the sound reasons why children shouldn't be singing during mass.

Since I needn't waste my breath on them, let me waste it on you...

Children's choirs are fine for developmental reasons so long as their performance is held outside of mass. They would do just fine at some churchly special event not related to the liturgy. Indeed, with children it could only be a 'performance' and that is the problem. I don't mean with the children- it wouldn't be their fault. They're just going to do what they're told to do. The adults would be the problem. The adults would be oohing and awwing and taking pictures and giggling (as they always do) at how cute little Bobby and Cindy are up there singing their little hearts out.. how precious. {shudder} I hate even using that word.

So I think the reader has already guessed my beef. What we have is absolutely nothing less than an orchestrated distraction from the Eucharist. Unfortunately our new music director is starting a children's choir. Not surprising. Nothing further needs to be said. Keep kids out of the liturgy!


Maureen said...

How can it possibly be a distraction? Nobody can even _see_ us singers up in the choir loft. The angle of vision just isn't there.

Much less the kiddies, as they are lots shorter.

TheGodFearinFiddler said...

Maureen - I'm a little confused. I'm not sure what you're getting at.

Regarding the choir loft - Our parish doesn't allow us to use the choir loft for fear that we might get OUT of the way of the liturgy. They refer to it as a "storage area".

Amy said...

I have been to Masses with children's choirs that were excellent. They're not a new invention, Catholics have a long tradition of children's choirs (mostly boys). Check out the history of the Vienna Boys' Choir - they were originally started to sing at the Mass about 500 years ago.

The only problem I see is when they're taught to sing songs that are inappropriate for the Mass, or when their family members mistake the Mass for a concert.

TheGodFearinFiddler said...

Amy, I can sympathize with what you're saying and I know not all children's choirs are bad and indeed it isn't the concept of a children's choir itself that is bad but rather how it almost always ends up.

Our adult choir sings children level songs at mass, what will our children sing? (I don't mean children level as in difficulty - I mean it as far as substance, doctrine and taste)

Hey, if they had the Vienna Choir Boys I'd be perfectly happy. What we're going to get instead is something quite different.