Tuesday, March 12, 2013

A secular god

When my wife and I got engaged, we went to our parish to arrange for the wedding. One of the things we had to do was to sit down with the music minister and choose the music for our wedding. Now, my wife and I know little about music, and nothing at all about liturgical music, so we figured go with the standards. "Here Comes the Bride" may be hokey, but heck, every wedding has it so we'd start with that. The music director stopped us short right away and told us it wasn't appropriate for a Catholic wedding - all the music had to be appropriate for a mass.

We quickly learned that Hollywood had led us astray, no Catholic wedding mass had ever had "Here Comes the Bride". I can't for the life of me remember exactly what music we chose, but the music director was very helpful, and we knew that we were following in the footsteps of 2000 years of marriages, so it wasn't anything personal.

And so it is with some amusement (and sadness) that I read of a woman named Shannon Carr who is suing St. Joseph's Catholic Church because they wouldn't allow a NASCAR inspired headstone in their cemetery. According to the story "the headstone is shaped like a couch and features images of a deer, a dog and color logos of NASCAR and the Indianapolis Colts." Color logos, mind you.
[Reverend Jonathan] Meyer says in an affidavit that photographs of the monument were shown to the St. Joseph Parish Council six weeks before Carr purchased it and that the council determined the monument wasn't acceptable because of its secular nature. He said he informed Carr of the decision.
Sad, and a bit ironic, since her husband, NASCAR fan Jason Carr, was killed in an automobile accident. But apparently, the thing which he honored most in his life was not God, but sports, and so he wants that to be his message to future generations. I wonder how this would play out if he had chosen a more traditional god to worship, like Zeus or Isis?


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