Tom Booth says goodbye to his Mass settings arrangement

Posted: November 20, 2011 in Church, popular culture and you, World Events, Young Adults, Youth
Tags: , , , ,

In the Catholic music world, Tom Booth is a modern legend and he has served as a mentor to several major stars, including Matt Maher. In the early 1990s, Booth wrote Mass settings and ritual music. Those arrangements, the “Mass of Life,” have been used across the country since 1993.
Now that the new translation of the Roman Missal is being implemented next weekend, that means Booth’s long-used music is being shelved.
I’m working on a story for The Catholic Review and Scott Miller, director of the Division of Youth and Young Adult Ministry, took me to Booth following the National Catholic Youth Conference finale Mass Nov. 19. Scott told him what I was working on and Booth smiled. Most kids didn’t realize they were participating in the swan song of “Mass of Life.”
Listen to him prepare the youths here.
Booth was still emotional. He just helped guide the worship of nearly 25,000 people inside Lucas Oil Stadium with the settings that would be retired that night.
“I wrote it 20 years ago and it’s been published and sung for years,” Booth told me after the Mass. “I kind of waved goodbye to it when we sang the ‘Amen.’ I blew it a kiss.”
At that moment, Booth grabbed his sheet music, signed it and gave it to me.

I asked: “It was that emotional, huh?”
Booth shook his head and offered, “I don’t want to think about it.”
What’s happening in America next weekend is a huge deal. Many adjustments will have to be made. While we welcome what’s coming, let’s cherish what has been so important in attracting millions to the faith during the last few decades.
I know I won’t forget Tom Booth anytime soon.

UPDATE: Tom Booth is considering adapting his “Mass Of Life” for the new translation.

Comments
  1. Heidi T says:

    I grew up with Tom, having been a Life Teen member starting WAY back in the mid-80’s when Life first started and while these changes are probably necessary, it saddens me to no end that Tom’s music, ”The Mass of Life”, will no longer be played at Mass…I actually cannot even picture it!
    So, Tom, thank you! Thank you for your beautiful words, thank you for your beautiful music and most of all, thank you for sharing your gift with us (And thanks to Tammy, for often putting gorgeous movement together for those songs).
    You have truly been an inspiration to me and my family and while we know YOU are not going away, it seems only appropriate – given these upcoming changes and the Thanksgiving holiday – to wholeheartedly share with you how grateful we all are to have had you come into our lives and bless us with you!

    • Tom Booth says:

      Heidi – great to “hear” from you. 🙂 I am now thinking that, with the help of others, I should adapt the Mass of Life setting to the new Roman Missal. Not sure why I was resistant to that idea before. I have a couple of friends that have already been working on it and I have just not been sure. Anyway, an adaptation wouldn’t hurt. There are just SOOOOO many new settings out there. I didn’t want to add to the cacophony that these past two years have been with publishing and new mass settings.

      Your words were very heart-warming. I am glad you are well.

      Peace!

      Tom

  2. […] One of the great joys of covering the National Catholic Youth Conference (NCYC) was meeting Tom Boot… After the NCYC Mass, he told me, “I wrote it 20 years ago and it’s been published and sung for years. I kind of waved goodbye to it when we sang the ‘Amen.’ I blew it a kiss.” During the last day, my post about Tom Booth has become one of the most viewed blogs in the year-long history of The Welcome Matt. What I’ve come to realize is that people across the country love Tom Booth and cherish his contributions to their Mass experience. So, it’ll make everyone feel good to see that Tom contributed a comment to my blog earlier today responding to a fan of his work. In his post, Tom said: ” I am now thinking that, with the help of others, I should adapt the Mass of Life setting to the new Roman Missal. Not sure why I was resistant to that idea before. I have a couple of friends that have already been working on it and I have just not been sure. Anyway, an adaptation wouldn’t hurt. There are just SOOOOO many new settings out there. I didn’t want to add to the cacophony that these past two years have been with publishing and new mass settings.” That’s good news to hear for Catholics, music fans and, well, everyone. Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailDiggLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  3. jb2agape says:

    We’re all family, and we all need to adapt whether we would have chosen the new translations or not. How we sort of bristle at change, and it would better serve us to welcome it. Tom, please let the love and your talent make the needed updates. You are a wonderful gift to us all, and with prayer and contemplation, I am sure you will be Holy Spirit inspired once again. And our hearts will be continued to be moved. Thank you for all you have shared and given. I feel blessed working with you in Life Teen at St. Timothy. We enjoyed your Paschal Mystery Tour too! Thanks for the sacrifices unique to your ministry.

  4. Scott R says:

    Tom,
    Former St. Tim’s parishoner and choir member w/ you and Matt and Tim & Julie; Tom, please modify the mass of life.

  5. rori c says:

    What a sweet blog…

  6. Ed says:

    I think the Amen is already done….so the hard part is over. Good Luck with it Tom.

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