Monday, August 30, 2010

Immaculate Heart of Mary - New Melle

Good Evening!

For Mass this Sunday (8/29) I attended the 11:15 am Mass at Immaculate Heart of Mary in New Melle, which is near Weldon Spring and Busch Conservation Areas.  For pictures of the old church, see this post!

Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) was founded in 1945 with the present church being completed in 2003.  If you go to the parish website, you can see a youtube of the construction of the new church.  IHM sort of looks like Christ, Prince of Peace.  I really liked the stained glass windows, however, I was totally wrong in what I thought the windows were symbolizing, something I'll talk about when I show you the windows.

The music was accompanied by a cantor and a piano.  There is an organ which was used for the Mass settings.
Opening:  Change Our Hearts This Time
Gloria:  The one with Sing Glory To God in the Highest
Responsorial Psalm:  Psalm 63:  My Soul is Thirsting For You (listed as a viable alternative)
Offertory:  Prayer of St. Francis
Communion:  Be Not Afraid
Closing:  Companions on the Journey

At the beginning of the homily, Father attempted to get all the people sitting in the back pews to move to the front pews.  Needless to say, he was unsuccessful and said we are all "Good" Catholics.  (Note:  Good Catholics sit in the back...why it pays to come to Mass on time).  As Father reflected on the Gospel he had a few questions:

  1. Where are we going to find these poor, lame, etc people we are supposed to invite to the banquet? (Really?  He doesn't know where to find the poor???)
  2. What if we sit in the lowest spot and are not asked to move up?
  3. Why does Jesus get to play Emily Post and offer etiquette tips when he never hosted a banquet?  (Uh..Last Supper anyone, anyone...)
Jesus is trying to point things out to those that are observing, not necessarily participating.  Notice how we are creatures of habit.  We look to help those that are just like us.  Who is observing us?  (CIA, FBI, etc...oh and God).  God sees us as dirt.  We forget we are created from dirt.  There is no such thing as a self-made man or woman, God has created us.  God makes high quality.  We think we are being good to God by praying.  God doesn't need our prayers.  Father referred to the preface for today.  God doesn't need our praise.  But the praise is how we grow in grace.  All throughout Luke, God is shown as the Good Samararitin, the Good Host, etc.  We need to be grateful and treat others as God treats us.  We have been given an invitation to risen life; we need to take that invitation.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells.

Immaculate Heart of Mary

Baptismal Font
(Rats...forgot the bubbles)

I've seen it at weekday Masses were they have 
those receiving place a host in the dish.
Never at a Sunday Mass.
And because there were multiple entrances,
this was at every entrance.

The Eighth Station
(I Think...)

View From the Back Pew

It's in the area behind the altar,
which has been turned into a little chapel of sorts.

I just hangin here..
Not really prominent.
But it all cooool.
I hip with the Spirit.

Mary with Baby Jesus.
Every baby should have a model church to play with.
That model is the St. Joseph Chapel!

St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church
He's hold St. Peter's

Left Side of the Altar:  The windows on the left side of the altar represent Mary's various titles and are taken from the Litany of Our Lady of Loreto (litany).  I actually liked these windows even though I had no idea they represented Mary.

Our Lady, Queen of the Apostles
Our Lady, Queen of the Martyrs

Morning Star (My absolute favorite! I loved this)
Our Lady, Queen of the Angels

Ark of the Covenant
Gate of Heaven

Mystical Rose
Seat of Wisdom

Spiritual Vessel (Or when baptismal jacuzzis go rogue)
House of Gold


Behind the Altar
Entrance to the mini Chapel
No grapes anywhere though.

It's God sitting on a Rainbow!!
Uhm actually not.
It's a window known as the Majestas Domini
It's Jesus.  But Jesus doesn't have grey hair...
He's surrounded by the symbols for the 4 Evangelists.

Pope St. Gregory the Great and St. Cecilia
Found next to the choir area
Why does St. Gregory have 2 different colored shoes?
His pallum has Gregorian chant notes on it.
I find it highly ironic the promotor of chant, the Pope they named
a form of chant after, is one of only two saints featured in a church
that has most likely never has chant in it.

Left Side of the Church:  When I first saw these windows, I thought they represented the Holy Family and saints.  I wasn't sure which saints because I'm not familiar with all the symbolism.  It turns out these windows represent various documents from the Second Vatican Council.  I've only seen a Vatican II window at one other church, St. Justin Martyr.  At the top of each window, is a sketch of a church and a crest.  I have to say upfront I'm floored by this.  Stained Glass windows are supposed to be a way of teaching and passing on the Faith.  Never in a million years would I have guessed they were to represent documents.  Really all the windows did was confuse me, especially since I liked them!  (Note I have some close ups if you want to see.  I can post to flickr.)

At the top: 
I thought the window on the left was the Holy Family, 
the window on the right a saint who wrote about the Gospels.
The window on the Left:
(yet the parish has no day school....)
The window on the right:

At the Top:
Crest of Pope Paul VI

At the Top:
I was rather surprised it was the Crest of Cardinal Ritter, given that it was
Cardinal Glennon who founded the parish.
However, Cardinal Ritter was a Vatican II Council Father,
so in terms of the windows, it makes more sense.
I had no clue. 
On the Left:
On the Right:

  At the Top:
Immaculate Heart of Mary - New Melle
(seriously.  Well aren't we special)
On the left:
I thought it was a Saint who built churches.  
There are so many.
(which my traditional friends tell me is responsible for puppets in Mass & the groovy music)
On the Right:
I couldn't figure out why there was a Star of David, 
A Star and Crescent,
Taoist Symbol (??),
a Wheel (Buddist?)
There's no Cross/Crucifix.
It's to represent
(Right:  Protestant looking churches, Protestant looking vestments,
Protestant Music
Weakening of Catholic Identity.
We are so ecumenical.)

I have seen it all with these windows.  I am now immensely curious as to why these 8 documents.  Are these the documents that are the most important or the ones easily bent to suit our own needs/desires/wants/wishes.  I get they chose the 4 Constitutions, but why did they choose those decrees and declarations?  I'm also curious as to why you would immortalize something that could be changed.  Maybe I misunderstand what an Ecumenical Council is, but I thought that if the Council wasn't messing with doctrine, or Faith and Morals, it could be changed at anytime.  So for instance, if Pope Benedict XVI called a council about say music and the council decided that Rock and Roll was the best for liturgy (ahhhh what a sweet dream) a future Pope could call a council and change it back.  It's not like they are changing a teaching such as the Immaculate Conception.   I also love how the bulletin discusses how Dignitalis Humanae was the greatest accomplishment of the American Church.  I'm glad to know that I didn't attend a Roman Catholic Church but an American Church this morning.  Cardinal Ritter may have been a primary crafter of the document, but to suggest it was the American Church responsible for this is rather making us seem full of ourselves.  Hubris?  It seems not very collegial.  The poor Holy Spirit gets no respect.  

I'm just wondering what was so wrong/uncool/traditional about continuing to have windows representing Mary's various titles, like Refuge or Sinners, Comforter of the Afflicted, or Mother of the Church (they seem to like churches at IHM)?  It could have been really cool to have an entire litany in windows.

Website of Immaculate Heart of Mary - New Melle (You can see a slide show about the windows.)
Two pictures from Rome of the West

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Immaculate Heart of Mary - St. Joseph Chapel, New Melle

Hello!  I'm breaking Sunday's post into two.  This post focuses on St. Joseph Chapel, which was the old church building for Immaculate Heart of Mary in New Melle.  The post that describes the new Church and the Mass can be found here.

Immaculate Heart of Mary
St. Joseph Chapel

Our Lady of Fatima

View From the Back Pew

The Eighth Station

Mary and Joseph

Consecration Cross

Watch and Pray
I am the Way

Sacred Heart of Jesus
Increase Our Love

Immaculate Heart of Mary
Pray For Our Parish

The Chalice of Salvation
or a bird bath for the Holy Spirit...

The Word of God
Thy Word is A Lamp to My Feet

Bread from Heaven
Stay with Us O Lord

(I cut off the verse when taking the picture)

We Walk By Faith
(..but not by sight...I don't know the rest of the words)

To Have Christ Dwelling Through Faith in Our Hearts
I Am the Bread of Life

Cross and Chalice

Okay I think Jesus is kinda girly in this

Mary and Infant Jesus

Website of Immaculate Heart of Mary (There are pictures of the church's groundbreaking and dedication, with Cardinal Glennon!)

St. Joseph - Tiff

Hello All!
This weekend I went to 2 different Masses, one on Saturday and one on Sunday so be sure to see them both!

I was trying to decide where to go on Sunday when I discovered that St. Joseph in Tiff (so named because of what was mined there) only has Mass Saturdays at 7:30 pm.  After much frustration with Google and Bing Maps, I realized I had to go relatively soon because it didn't look easy to find, especially at night.  Excellent call.  I would have never found it without the GPS (Thanks Mark!) and at night.  There is a very little sign where you turn onto the road the Church is on.  Additionally, one of the trees right at the turn off has a purple rectangle painted on to it.  

St. Joseph is a very cute little church, dedicated in 1944.  I'm not sure 100 people would fit into it.  The parishoners were all very friendly and helpful.  One of the parishoners gave me a parish history book.  He started the project because all of the records were lost when the original church burned to the ground in 1935.  All that is left is oral history and unfortunately, time is destroying that as well.  

The music was accompanied by an organ.
Opening:  I Sing the Mighty Power of God
Offertory:  Seek Ye First
Communion:  Whatsoever You Do
Recessional:  Holy God We Praise Thy Name

The pastor was off on vacation so a retired priest that lives nearby offered Mass.  Father's chasuble had the stole attached to the outside.  Father used the full Penitential Rite but skipped the Gloria.  Father's homily started off talking about how hospitality is a good virtue but had to practice it with people we don't like or are comfortable with.  The Lord wants us to reach out to others.  Jesus wasn't talking about an earthly banquet but rather a heavenly banquet.  We get an invite to it when we help those in need.  We need to help those outside our comfort zone.  What are we doing to get to heaven?  This all provided a nice lead in to Father talking about the charity he works with, Christian Foundation for Children and Aging, which is the Catholic version of those sponsorship programs you see late at night on TV.  Father invited us all to adopted a new member of the family.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were no bells (but three servers!).

The parishoners were very friendly and made sure I knew how to get to a highway after Mass!

Old St. Joseph School
One of the parishoners told me when he went to school here,
the parish had chickens and cows.
Instead of recess, the boys had to look after the animals.
I told him it was called Vocational Education ;)

St. Joseph
I think is this where the old church was.
Otherwise it is rather odd for a statue to be in the middle
of the parking lot.

Our Lady of Fatima

St. Joseph
Isn't it cute!

The Eighth Station:
Jesus Meets the Holy Women

View From the Back Pew!

Close-Up of Sanctuary
I'm not sure I like the curtains.
Makes it look theater-y.

The Nativity
The Presentation in the Temple

The Flight into Egypt
Boy Jesus in the Temple

Jesus with children
Jesus with Mary and Martha (I think...)

Jesus Chasing the Moneychangers out of the Temple
Think this is the first window I've seen
depicting that story.

Jesus, the Good Shepherd
I thought that the window on the right was
Jesus appearing to St. Peter on the road to Rome,
but the windows are in chronological order
and therefore it doesn't fit.

The Last Supper
Agony in the Garden

The Crucifixion
 (I'm not sure I like purple Jesus. That's a little too Goth for me)
The Resurrection


St. Joseph Tiff (Website of St. Joachim in Old Mines)