Some outdoor masses in Door and Kewaunee Counties on select weekend dates certainly have their own beat to them. According to the Religion News Service, the history of the polka mass dates back to the 1970s at an Ohio catholic church. In the article, Rev. Jerome Lajack of West Side Cleveland Church pointed to changes made during Vatican II that allowed churches to celebrate mass to reflect different languages and cultures. Since then, polka bands have played arrangements of the Lord’s prayer and other traditional hymns and psalms. Father Tony Birdsall of Sturgeon Bay has said his fair share of polka masses and he believes they have their place.
Birdsall will be the presiding priest during the polka mass held during this weekend’s Valmy Thresheree.