..that I'm really moved by the comments on my tie-dyed priest column below. There is no lack of strong, serious spirituality among Catholic people. It is so clear that when people go to Mass what they really hope for is, quite simply and naturally, a moment in time and space to encounter the eternal God and be refreshed and renewed by His love, challenged by His Word and nourished by His very Presence.
And people are just so valiant and patient, in being willing to cut through the imperfections of those leading us in prayer, to seek that Presence...it is just too bad that it's so difficult sometimes, isn't it?
But I can't pull a "it's Vatican II's fault" here. Sure, the big, huge error that emerged from the post-Conciliar period (not countenanced by the documents themselves, though) is the idea that the greatest service those in charge of liturgy can provide is to be creative and inject themselves into the proceedings, instead of submitting themselves to God through the ritual, but you can be sure there were plenty of people who struggled to find meaning in and through the Tridentine Liturgy, not as we like to idealize it, but as it was actually lived. It's the same problem, in a different form, and .the purpose of my column was not excuse such distortions, but to simply share an experience in which I had to confront it and deal with it myself.
For more on the same line..here's a column I wrote several years ago describing the ideal liturgical reform.