Sunday, February 28, 2010

St. Justin Martyr - Crestwood

On Sunday, February 28, 2010, I attended the 11 am Mass at St. Justin Martyr in Crestwood.  St. Justin Martyr is a modern church (1965) in the shape of a fan or triangle.  It reminded me of Our Lady of the Rosary.  I looked all over for a statue/window/banner of St. Justin Martyr but I couldn't locate one, unless it is one of the saints I can't identify in the windows, so here's the link to find out more about St. Justin Martyr.

There was no choir at this Mass, but there was a cantor.  The music was accompanied by a piano, except for the Mass parts which were accompanied by the organ.  Except for the last song, all of the songs were about light.
Opening:  I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light
Offertory:  The Lord is My Light (Walker)
Communion:  Christ Be Our Light
Closing:  The Glory of These Forty Days

The Kyrie was odd.  It was a song.  We sang Kyrie Elieson, Christi Elieson and Kyrie Elison and the Cantor sang verses.

Before the opening prayer, Father gave a mini-homily about how we are called to be transfigured and how we should pray for integrity.

The deacon gave the homily.  He started off talking about how the Gospel we hear on Sunday never gives the complete story, but taken together, form a stream.  He then went on to talk about how Jesus had an identity crisis.  Until the Transfiguration, Jesus did not know who He was.  Uhm.  Actually Jesus knew who He was a lot earlier, so either I misheard the deacon or ...  The homily then went on to talk about how we need to be transfigured, it can happen constantly.

The intentions were focused on social justice with the second intention was for Israel.

Father said Eucharistic Prayer III and there were no bells at the Consecration.

St. Justin Martyr seems like a very active parish.  According the bulletin, they will be having a Christian Seder right before Holy Thursday Mass.  They have Vespers Sunday afternoons in Lent.  They will also be participating in Stations of the Cross at a neighboring Protestant parish.  They have a parish library.

Cross in the Narthex

Sacred Heart of Jesus
in the Narthex

View from the Back Pew!

The Holy Family
The only statue inside the actual church.
They don't look very comfy...

Jesus Falls for the First Time
Station of the Cross

Mary with an alien in her tummy.
Jesus:  Bubble boy

St. Louis, King of France

The elusive Spirit of Vatican II
Yes.  It is a window dedicated to Vatican II.
Vatican II documents

The St. Louis Arch

Window with a variety of Saints
Pere Jacques Marquette, SJ, one of the many missionaries who came to St. Louis
His cause for canonization is still open.

A saint (thoughts on who?)
Often saints are depicted with how they were martyred.
This poor saint was obvious killed by a dive-bombing pigeon.
Update: After much discussion with friends, we have an ID.
The red halo indicates martyr.  It is most likely St. Justin Martyr.  He wrote for the early Church.
That explains the book.  Also, there were house Churches back in the day, 
which explains the gold building.
Still working on the 3 people.

More Saints
My guess for the top saint is St. Joseph, 
as he is often depicted with lilies and carpentry tools.

Some of my readers have requested more outdoor shots.
So here's one of an outdoor "church" I found in the back.
There's an altar, ambo, and a statue of a praying mantis.

St. Justin Martyr Website

Friday, February 26, 2010

Fish Fry - St. Pius V

Hi all.
It's Friday.  F stands for fish.  Yum!

On Friday, February 26, I went to the fish fry at St. Pius V in south St. Louis.  I went around 4:30 pm, the line was just starting to pick up.  There was also Irish music.

Fried Cod and Mac & Cheese (homemade I might add)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Calvary Cemetery

On Sunday, February 21, 2010, my pal and fellow blogger Mark asked if on the way back from Our Lady of the Holy Cross we could stop at the cemetery and take pictures since it was such a dreary day.  Sure, why not? Calvary Cemetery began in the 1850s.  Many of the smaller cemeteries, such as the one attached to the Old Cathedral, were moved here.  Former Archbishops, bishops, priests, religious are all buried here with all sorts of people like the Chouteaus and the Soulards.  There are all kinds of tombstones.

A Priest Forever
Archdiocesan Priest Graves
The grave directly in the front of the cross was Cardinal Ritter.
He's at the New Cathedral now.
Monsignors are to the left in the back.

Really Really Old Priests graves.
I think the newest I found was 1920.
Many parishes had the monuments erected for their pastors.
Archbishop Kenrick's tomb is directly in front of the crucifix.
Bishop Kain's tomb is to the left.  

Gothic Spire Monument
I've seen angels, crosses, hearts, lambs.  
This is a first.

 I didn't realize the mausoleum was so totally cool.  There was a chapel downstairs.  On the first floor there was an altar where one could theoretically say Mass.  All of the windows were stained glass.

Symbol of eternal life

Ceiling on the first floor, in the chapel area.
It reads:
"I am the Resurrection and the Life, 
He that believeth in Me, although dead,
shall have eternal life."

All of the stained glass windows are of this style.
There is a stained glass window at the end of each hall.
The halls are named after either Mary's various names or
the different names for Jesus.

Pray for the Souls of the Faithfully departed.

God is Love

View from the Back Pew
Chapel downstairs

Chapel Windows
Looks rather like the Creation

St. Francis of Assisi
This window was off the side down one of the hallways.
There is a squirrel, bird, bunny and a wolf.

Death of St. Joseph

I've never seen a statue of St. Anne like this.

St. Louis Archdiocesan Cemeteries
From Rome of the West:  here, here, here, here

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Our Lady of the Holy Cross - St. Louis

On Sunday, February 21, 2010, I attended Our Lady of the Holy Cross in the Baden area of St. Louis City.  Our Lady of the Holy Cross was founded in 1993 through the merger of Holy Cross (current parish location) and Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

The church is gothic style.  The church doesn't seem very wide or long, as it only sits 400.  However, it feels very tall.  Although the church sanctuary was renovated in 1989, the high altar, reredos, windows and original statues still remain.  The parish itself is very diverse, with many descendants of the original parishoners still attending.

Music was accompanied by a piano with a small choir in the front.  The music selections:
Processional:  In These Days of Lenten Journey
Kyrie:  To the tune of Wade in the Water
Preparation of the Gifts:  He's So Real
Holy:  In Latin
Lamb of God:  In Latin
Communion:  On Eagle's Wings (FYI:  This song is based on Psalm 90, which was the Psalm for today)
Recessional Song:  Lord, Who Throughout These Forty Days

Before Mass, there was Confession and the Rosary was being recited.

Before the Penitential Rite, Father gave kind of a mini-homily that touched on temptation.  We did say the Confiteor.

The homily was different.  Father posed two questions: do you forgive Tiger Woods and what phrase describes the temptations in today's gospel.  After the questions were posed, we discussed the answers with our neighbors.  Then Father asked for our answers.  He then moved on to his homily and talked primarily about the temptations.  He then asked us how many of us forgave Tiger Woods?  What would you do if your spouse cheated?  What is forgiveness?  It is a decision of will.  Humans fail.  Father also discussed fasting and how it can accent one's desire for Jesus.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells during the Sanctus (Holy Holy) and the Consecration.  During the Consecration, Father spaced out the phrases.  There were lots of pauses.   During the Our Father, Father held hands with the Deacon.

At the final blessing, Father mentioned that in Rome it is traditional to visit the different churches in Lent, the Station Churches.  Today's station is St. John Lateran (This is the Pope's Church) (Virtual Tour from the Vatican!)  Here is another link about Station Churches and this one is from PNAC, the American Seminary in Rome.  Father said a prayer reflecting this.

View From the Back Pew

Display of Historical Items
The top shelf has works by Msgr. Martin B Hellriegel
The book is open to a page that says "Canta Missa"


Close-Up of Relic of St. Maria Goretti

Mission Cross
I'm very curious about these.
I've seen 3-4 of them, all in parishes that were primarily German.

What is this?

Mary's altar
It is traditional to cover statues in Lent.
In the center is a relic of St. John.

Note the rainbow at the top.

Guardian Angel Window

Cross Outside

Father's dog, Elijah, who joined us for Mass.
He sat next to me for the Liturgy of the Word. :)

Website from the St. Louis Archdiocese
Pictures from Rome of the West

Friday, February 19, 2010

Taizé Prayer

As part of exploring the St. Louis Archdiocese and the big tent that is Catholicism, I've decided to attend non-Mass events, such as Stations of the Cross or Liturgy of the Hours.

Tonight, I attended a Taizé prayer service sponsored by the Sanguis Christi Spirituality Center, a new ministry of the Sisters of the Most Precious Blood.  It was held in the chapel of St. Elizabeth Academy (SEA), where I happened to go to high school.  I hadn't been in the chapel or the school really since I graduated in 1994.

When I walked in, the chapel was dark except for the emergency lights and the candles on the altar.  Two students were there, playing the violin and the keyboard.  (They did an awesome job BTW).

I snagged a program...
Opening Song:  All I Do Today
Reading I:  Isaiah 2:2-5
Songs:  Wait for the Lord & Jesus Remember Me & Stay With Me
Reading II:  John 14:27
Songs:  Confitemini Domino & Ubi Caritas, & We Adore You, Lord, Jesus Christ & Jesus, Remember Me
Closing Prayer:  Prayer for the Decade of Non-Violence
Closing Song:  All I Do Today
I think they played an additional song off of a CD that sort of sounded like a litany, but wasn't.

Basically, we sang the songs repeatedly.  So for example, Ubi Carita, we sang and repeated it around 10 times.  There were periods of silence for quiet prayer and reflection.  About half way through, the crucifix that was propped up against the altar, was placed on pillows, so that people could come up and pray around the crucifix.  A person would come up, kneel and then bend so that his/her forehead was nearly touching the crucifix.

I'm not exactly sure what the point of Taizé prayer is or how it "works"  I liked it better than I liked Adoration.  I think it is because I can't handle long periods of quiet.  So I liked the singing.  The program called the songs chants.  I would disagree maybe.  It didn't sound like chant.  I guess when I think chant, I think Gregorian chant and monks in monasteries.  So this maybe a valid form of chant that I've never been exposed to.

The over-all theme of night was peace and praying for peace. The program mentioned that Taizé promotes inner unity and allows one's spirit to rest in God.  I'm not sure what that means.

Some of my more traditionally minded Catholic friends were concerned that I was going to Taizé prayer, as in the past there have been some *shenanigans*.  I could see where and how that could happen.  The opening and closing song, All I Do Today, seemed to ignore that really everything I do today should orient me towards God or should bring me closer to God.  The Prayer for the Decade of Nonviolence was just odd.  I hesitate to call it a prayer because it doesn't include anything about God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, Mary or any Saints.  I kind of thought Catholic Prayers had to mention one of those somehow.  I think if you replaced those 2 things, it was okay.  But, I'm rather liberal.

SEA School Seal
In the floor, in front of the Chapel
Woe to the student who walked on it...
Except for seniors, who have been known to dance on it...
After graduation...

Patroness of the School

Altar set-up for Taizé prayer

When the school was rebuilt/expanded in the 1950s, the students
chose the female saints for the windows.  At the bottom of the window
is the virtue the saint is most represents.
Judith has a bag of gold or wheat...the word starts with Holo..
The rest of the windows:
Elizabeth of Thuringia
I despaired of getting a shot of the windows, but then a floodlight turned on!

Station of the Cross

Statue of Mary
I think this is from the school's original chapel, 
part of which survives as the music/orchestra room
It is now in the front of the convent.

View From the Back Pew!
(You didn't think I'd forget!)
The words going across are: Power, Godhead, Wisdom,
Strength, Honor, Glory, Blessing

The Taizé Community
Old Entrance taken by Rome of the West (traditionally, the graduating class has the class picture taken here)

Fish Fry Friday!!! 2/19

Happy Lent Friday!  I hope we all remembered no cheeseburgers, bacon, chicken nuggets or steak today!

Today's fish fry tail is interesting.
What happens when you want to be a good Catholic and support the local parish and school by going to the parish fish fry but your kids (or goddaughters) won't eat fish?  What if, the horror, you don't like fish?  What if, after 40 days of Lent, you'd rather not see another piece of cod?

St. Raphael the Archangel has the answer for you!  They are only having seafood (and not fried seafood either) on two Fridays in Lent.  The rest of the Fridays are really awesome.  There was breakfast for dinner today.  Next week is pizza!

This is the kid's plate.  They had toppings too.

Remember this phrase:  Prior planning prevents poor performance/outcomes.

Because 2 pancakes really doesn't satisfy my hunger (Jake snagged my eggs) and I kind of wanted fish, I decided to go to a second fish fry.  Since I was attending an event at St. Elizabeth Academy (post to come) I decided to go to a fish fry nearby.  I decided on St. Pius V.  I was like, I'll get there at 6 pm and be done in plenty of time to get to SEA for the 7 pm event.  I forgot about traffic and parking.  I also didn't realize that people who went home from work to get their families, would now be hitting the fish fry.  It was packed.  There was a line outside the door.  I could see in and was like it won't take so long and it will all be cool.  I was standing in line next to Franciscan Sisters, one I think was a Franciscan of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, so conversation was good.  She asked me if I had ever thought of being a sister and there was still time for me to consider my vocation.  (I'll have to say this is the first time I've ever been asked directly.)  When I got inside, I realized the were curling the line around and there was no way I was going to make it.  So I bailed.  But I was still hungry.  

After calling some friends, I managed to locate a fish fry at St. Agatha, the Polish parish, which was straight down Arsenal.  So I ran there and had fish.  If you go, expect to hear people speaking in Polish. Note:  They only had coffee, hot tea, and Polish Beer to drink...