Marty Haugen replies about comments on the
criticism of the selection
of his music for the Papal visit.
plus years I have been told, mainly anonymously through the internet,
how I have been personally responsible for destroying Roman Catholic
worship. I have never responded; however, I wish to offer a few
First of all, although I am not Roman
Catholic, I have a deep love and respect for and faith in the worship
tradition of the Roman Catholic Church. My own hesitancy about joining
the Church is not about its eucharistic theology, but rather around the
unwillingness of the Church to commission, ordain and welcome all
humans as Jesus did�male and female, married and unmarried, saints and
sinners. I believe that the Church, God�s people and all of creation
have suffered from this omission.
do not think of my own music as
central or important to Roman Catholic worship, present or future.
began writing as a parish musician; I still keep the vision that to be
�catholic� is to learn and love and embrace the best of the past
tradition and to welcome the �best� of what is new, as Gods [sic]
speaks through all cultures and expressions (see �Lumen Gentia� [sic]).
I leave it to communities and to the Holy Spirit that will (more than
us, thank God) guide the future choices that will last.
I had nothing to do with the choice of
�Mass of Creation� for a Papal Mass. Having said that, I believe that
attacks upon Tom Stehle in his efforts to engage a congregation with
what he hoped would be familiar and meaningful to them (using parts of
the liturgy with currently approved texts) were unfair, un-Christian
and beneath those of us who truly care about how God speaks through our
Well I don’t think that he has destroyed
Catholic worship which is an over the top accusation.
My main complaint is that his music has become such a standard
and quite over used. It just does not deserve the “pride of
place” it has received. It is not the writers of music that
are at fault really, it is those who continue to promote inferior
pieces of sacred music. Even the Saint Louis Jesuit’s never
intended that there music would be used at Mass.