Monday, December 27, 2010

St. Stephen Protomartyr

Had this not been the Feast of the Holy Family, it would be the Feast Day of St. Stephen Protomartyr.  Because of the weather, I stuck close to home and attended the 10:30 am Mass at St. Stephen Protomartyr in South City.

Before Mass, the choir sang carols.  Also, the Church welcomed a new member today:  Oliver :)

Opening:  Good Christian Men Rejoice
Gloria:  Sing Glory to God
Offertory:  Choir sang a variation of What Child Is This?
Mass Setting:  Mass of Creation
Communion:  Snow Lay on the Ground; Away in the Manger
Closing:  Instrumental of Joy to the World

Father's homily focused on family.  In today's gospel, Joseph is at the forefront.  His symbol should be a pair of Nikes, as he always asked to travel.  Usually we hear little about of Joseph.  He was walking to protect his family.  What makes up a family?  What makes a family holy?  Do you pray as a family?  Do you encourage your children to pray?  Bring children to Mass.  God should be the center of the family.  We need to protect children not only from physical harm but from spiritual neglect.  Father reminded everyone of the Baptismal Promise to bring children up in the Faith.  We not only need to talk the talk, but walk the walk.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells at the Consecration.

At the end of Mass, Father asked the parish to Nazi salute bless Baby Oliver.  Then because it was the Feast of the Holy Family, Father invited families up to be blessed by either him or one of the EMHC at the end of Mass.

View From the Back Pew!


Our Lady of Perpetual Help

VIII:  The Holy Women


These windows represent the duties of a deacon (I think):

Scenes from the Gospels:

St. Stephen Protomartyr

Website of St. Stephen Protomartyr

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Windows at St. Mark

Last year for Midnight Mass on Christmas, I went to St. Mark.  A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to go back to St. Mark during the day and took pictures of the windows.

 Along the bottom:

 Along the top:

Nativity at St. Francis de Sales

What's better than one Midnight Mass?  Why two of course!

On the way home from St. Ann, I noticed that the lights were on at St. Francis de Sales.  I popped in for the end of Mass, but in time to venerate the relic of the Crib Stable they have.

The relic is on the pillow in the front.

St. Ann - Normandy

Merry Christmas!

I had the best intentions to go to all 4 Christmas Masses.  I only made it to the Midnight Mass because of the weather and such.

For Midnight Mass (at Midnight!) I went to visit my favorite priest (Fr. B!) at St. Ann in Normandy.

The choir sang carols for about 15 minutes before the start of Mass.  For the Mass the music was accompanied by an organ.
Opening:  O Come All Ye Faithful
Presentation of Gifts:  O Little Town of Bethlehem
Communion:  Silent Night
Meditation:  Mary, Did You Know?  (It's Christmas.  I'll practice charity...)
Closing:  Joy to the World
Mass Setting:  Mass of Creation
Gloria:  One with the refrain of Angels We Have Heard on High

Fr. B sang the Christmas Proclamation, the Opening Prayer and first part of the Eucharistic Prayer (III).  I have to say, Fr. B is one of the best priests at singing.

Mass started with the Christmas Proclamation and then the Baby Jesus was carried to the crib and the Nativity was venerated.  There was incense!  Bells at the Consecration.

The Gospel Question:  Are you a Good Receiver?

It is a season of giving.  But at the heart of the feast, it is a season of receiving.  It is essential to our Salvation.  We are not good at receiving.  It makes us uncomfortable.  When we get a compliment, we tend to deflect it.  We don't want to be indebted.  We have a hard time receiving God's Love.  Receiving love makes us vulnerable.  It is why Jesus came as a baby.  The last Words of Jesus were "Father into Your Hands I commend My Spirit"  Jesus asked God to receive what He had to offer.  Jesus was comfortable with receiving.  We need to see God in our everyday encounters.  Will you let God tell you He loves you?

View From the Back Pew!

Along the Left Side of the Church

Mary and Joseph


VIII:  Jesus Meets the Holy Women

Website of St. Ann
Pictures from Rome of the West (Scroll towards the bottom)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Little Flower - Richmond Heights

Hello!  I was entertaining an out-of-town guest so after much discussion, a consensus was reached to attend the 9:15 am Mass at Little Flower.  One tiny detail:  it's a traditional Latin Mass.  This would be the third old Mass I've attended.  I'm getting a little better at following along, but if I stop paying attention I get lost really quick.  My Latin however, is horrid.

Little Flower is a Church in the round, with the altar in the center.  It was interesting that nearly everybody chose to sit in the pews that made Mass ad orientem (priest faces liturgical East).  There were hardly any windows.  The windows were small stained glass circles at the top.  There were lots of statues as well.

For music there was a small choir and an organ.  The music:
Opening Hymn:  Come Thou Long Expected Jesus
Mass Setting:  Mass XVII
Offertory:  Hail Mary
Communion Motet:  O Sacrum Cor Jesu
Closing Hymn:  Creator of the Stars at Night

Father's homily focused on today's Gospel from Luke.   Luke gives some background.  John the Baptist's preaching about baptism is not the same as our Baptism.  What John the Baptist was doing was more similar to a Penance Service.  The message from the Gospel is to make straight the way of the Lord.  We need to perfect our lives.  We need to renewed with the joy of His Coming.  It is the Greatest Gift of all time.  The homily was pretty short.  I had a difficult time hearing the homily because I managed to sit in front of the heating vents and they kicked on during the homily.

View From A Back Pew!

St. Joan of Arc

Little Flower Chapel

Mary's Chapel

8:  Jesus Consoles the Holy Women

St. Dismas

St. Patrick

Website of Little Flower
Exterior and Interior Pictures from Rome of the West