A Catholic's call for a return to smells and bellsIn this informative and entertaining critique of music in the Catholic Church, Thomas Day outlines a stinging indictment of the influence of popular culture on American Catholicism, particularly as expressed in church music. Taking aim at the Irish-American repertoire of songs that overwhelms Catholic music in America, Day assails the secularization of liturgical practices that began, in the author’s view, with the Second Vatican Council in 1962. And while targeting the demise of services, Day remains optimistic, offering several key solutions to revitalize and nurture the latent vitality that remains among the parishioners of the American Catholic Church.
Reviews"Day writes with a verve and wickedly humorous style that one wouldn't expect to find in a book on this kind of subject. His way with a phrase frequently has one laughing out loud as he skewers the people who perpetrated this musical assault on the American Catholic congregation." —J. Michael
"An intelligent and humorous account of why we Catholics don't sing at the "new" mass, anyone involved in liturgy from Bishop to altar boy (I mean server) should read this book. As an organist and music director in a Roman Catholic parish for many years, I finally feel forgiven for what I have been unable to do since the late 60's—try to get the parish to sing." —D. Disier
"I never for a moment suspected I would ever read a book on the Roman Catholic Liturgy that would make me laugh out loud, but this one did. . . . The hilarity comes from the author's descriptions of some of the horrifying liturgical results of Vatican II. But he truly understands what the liturgy is all about. It is in fact a very serious book, maybe one of the most relevant for modern Catholics and other Christians, though there are probably very few people who are ready for it." —D. O'Neal
Author BiographyThomas Day is the chair of the music department at Salve Regina University where he teaches music and humanities courses. He is an active composer and member of the American Guild of Organists, the American Musicological Society, and the College Music Society, and is the author of Where Have You Gone, Michelangelo?: The Loss of Soul in Catholic Culture. He lives in Newport, Rhode Island.