In my personal experience, the people who are playing guitar at mass are usually singing like, country music type hymns (as my mother would say the "jesus is my boyfriend" kind of hymns) but I do get your point. Guitar could be a very beautiful instrument in mass.
This is very true anon, there are some guitar Mass music that is certainly not Mass music!
I think the reason it concerns me so much is because in my Catholic community over half of them are Latino. I see a lot of their Catholic traditions that seem to be held at equal irreverence to Protestant rock music in Mass, when in reality their traditions are not any less, they are simply just not European.
I was guilty of this myself. I heard the talks about how terrible the Spanish (Language) Mass was, and I too took part in the laughing at some of their culture and faith practices. Little did I know that in the future due to scheduling I would soon only be able to attend the Mass said in the Spanish language. God has his ways of serving us slices of humble pie. As I was surrounded by Latino families I began to wonder, “Is it them who are irreverent to Catholic Tradition…or is it I?”
I believe in preserving tradition just as much as any Catholic should, after all it’s a fundamental basis of our faith and teachings. And I don’t believe that most of it is malicious, I think maybe sometimes it is difficult to see something as culture and tradition when we are constantly told that A B C is tradition, and anything else must be heresy/irreverence.
As those beautiful images of Our Lady has shown us, culture, tradition, people, all vary. As Catholics (maybe it’s just me) it’s easy to look at the world and say “look what’s wrong with it! The world should be more Catholic!!!” Rather than turning to myself and saying “What’s wrong with me, maybe I should be more Catholic!!” I think it’s good to question if our own personal Catholicism is in fact Catholicism. Is it truly universal, not only in art, but in practice and worship, in prayer and in Mass?
After all how else can we change the world if we cannot first change ourselves?
I know my post is probably unpopular and uncomfortable and some may think it’s a little stupid, but it’s a question we should ask, with perhaps Our Lady, mother of us all, leading the way as always ;)