(AoftheANews) – MUSKEGON – 2018 started out on a costly note for cantor Mary Mel O’Deeze at Sts. Sonny & Cher, as the Worship Committee fined her $200 for failing to raise her arm during the Responsorial Psalm during the 9:30 AM Mass last Sunday.
“Proper worship forms are taken very seriously here,” committee chair Rick Rowled told AoftheA News. “Failure to clearly indicate to the congregation when they are supposed to sing is an egregious offense to the Lord, and won’t be tolerated here.”
Along with the fine, Ms. O’Deeze has been suspended for the next four weeks, and will have to attend a two-week Cantor Rehabilitation program offered by the diocese.
In a prepared statement to the community, Ms. O’Deeze wrote in part: “I deeply apologize to the community at Sts. Sonny & Cher for letting you all down last Sunday, and I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me, for having negatively impacted your worship experience.”
“The penalty may seem steep to some,” Mr. Rowled said, “but I have a saying: You either can’t, or cantor, but you can’t not cantor halfway. Personally, I think Ms. O’Deeze does a fantastic job, and I’m looking forward to her return, and leading the congregation properly and professionally.”
Several parishioners told AoftheA News after Mass that they had felt confused and unsure of what to do during the Responsorial Psalm due to Ms O’Deeze’s gaffe, and thus refused to applaud her performance afterward.
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