Looking at ‘musical legacy, faith’ of Bruce Springsteen

A New Jersey pastor who has had a long friendship with Bruce Springsteen held a workshop a few weeks back examining the “musical legacy and faith” of the singer-songwriter, according to a story by correspondent Christina Leslie in this issue of The Monitor, newspaper of the Diocese of Trenton, N.J. A crowd of about 150 — including Bruce’s mother, Adele — gathered for the session held by Father Kevin J. Keelen, pastor of St. Barnabas Parish in Bayville.

“Every indigenous tribe has music. It’s part of being human,” the Augustinian friar said. “Tonight’s about Bruce and us. He evangelizes in a different way.” Citing lyrics from Springsteen’s “Hungry Heart,” the priest quoted St. Augustine: “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you, God.”

With anecdotes drawn on his friendship with “The Boss,” Father Keelen “wove a picture of a deeply spiritual musician whose faith is reflected in his extensive music portfolio,” writes Leslie.

7 Responses

  1. Ok My friends anybody know Bruce or anybody that knows him to pass this video on? I wanna see her get this done. What a great lesson this has been. Everyone showing their support. People liking her “Help Macie Get Bruce Springsteen to Sicomac School” page and marking it on the map. When this happens, Macie will think there is nothing she can’t do and how awesome will that be? So please keep posting and keep clicking on the youtube icon on the bottom right of the video so your view registers on youtube and please leave a comment to encourage her and Bruce to come! Thank you everyone. It is so much fun watching her watch the view go up and her get excited! http://youtu.be/-VJOpYQOD48

  2. The Boss’ frequent use of Catholic imagery are too often interwoven with sexualilty. He doesn’t share the Church’s teachings nearly so much as portraying the man he probably is: a fallen-away Catholic who weaves religious themes learned in his youth into his humanism-drenched secular music.

  3. That’s probably true, Michael, but at least there’s a seed there, something for the Holy Spirit to work with, no? That’s more spirituality than the vast majority of musicians of his stature seem to have. There’s some grounds for hope there.

  4. Pat, there is always hope, as well as God’s mercy. I’m just not convinced that Bruce’s confused and conflicted musical “theology” is the right vehicle to carry people to the pure and perfect truth that is Our Lord.

  5. Pat, Michael, and perhaps others need to get a reality check. By their standards, Mussolini, Hitler, and Himmler were just confused and conflicted Catholics where the Holy Spirit just didn’t find enough “seed” to work with.

    Utter pietistic nonsense. …

  6. Yes, Bruce Springsteen as a popular songwriter has tapped into some of the spiritual background he shares with many Roman Catholics across the globe. As such, his lyrics do actually inspire and lend verbal imagery to human hearts longing for God. But Dante Aligheri he ain’t. From his lapsed-Catholic public stance, he doesn’t really participate in the sacramental life of the Church (alas!). His position with respect to the Catholic Church is rather more like Lord Byron’s to the Anglican Church of his day, than let’s say David Jones. That’s what makes such encomiums to “the Boss” by star-struck pastors so laughable. They should know better.

  7. LOTR, you’re killing me! Springsteen is “The Boss,” not “The Dictator” or “The Mass Murderer.” And since the Church is so hesitant to proclaim anyone damned (though Judas comes to mind as an exception), who knows, maybe even Bruce has a chance.

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