Sunday, January 30, 2011

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton - St. Charles

Happy Catholic Schools Week!!!!  I'm glad I went to 12 years of Catholic School!  It is the duty of all Catholics to support Catholic Education, which means I better get back to eating pancakes ;)

To celebrate Catholic Schools Week, I went to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in St. Charles, who did much for Catholic Education in America.

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is a modern church, built in 1991 and refreshed in 2010.  I think they are still working on it as there are no Stations of the Cross, but a space for them is set aside.  It looks rather like a bunker from the outside...  The interior is rather plain and there is a lack of statues and windows.  The windows that were there were blue glass and are about the size of the openings in pillboxes.

The various liturgical ministers all wore necklaces so that you would know who they were and what they were going to do.  The priest, excuse me, the presider, did not wear one.  How am I supposed to know who the priest is and what he does if he doesn't wear a special necklace to identify him???

At the beginning of Mass, someone read the message of the day.  The message for today is Hope.

The choir and a full band (viola, keyboard, violin, flute, clarinet, drums, etc) provided the music for Mass.
The music:
Opening:  Table of Plenty
Offertory:  Beatitudes
Communion:  Prayer of St. Francis; Open My Eyes
Closing:  Our God is Here
The Gloria was the clappy Calypso one.  I'm not sure it is a kosher Gloria cause the words are all changed around, that and any song that makes me want to bust a move at Mass is suspect.  I did notice a lack of full, active participation by the people in the pews.  Only the preschoolers were clapping...  I think the rest of the Mass came from this setting.

The Responsorial Psalm was Praise the Lord My Soul.  It wasn't the preferred Psalm or one of the common psalms listed as a replacement.

Father started off Mass talking about something which was really difficult to hear/understand.  I did catch  "God shows mercy to the merciful"  Uh.  If that's true, I'm screwed.  I thought God's mercy had no conditions and was infinite.  I could be wrong.

Mass was very, very, very long.
First, there was the blessing and singing of the sending song for the Children's Liturgy of the Word.  I'm always amazed by the different age ranges for the CLoW.  After the homily, the RCIA candidates were sent out (with a sending song) to do RCIA.  Then the Second Graders had to make their First Communion Promises.  I did enjoy how one of them was to cooperate for the parents.  I also enjoyed watching a few families with 2nd graders sneak out around Communion time...  Then because it is Catholic Schools Week, someone came up and talked about Catholic Schools, specifically St. Elizabeth-St. Robert Regional School.  The school was a strategic plan to improve Catholic Identity through emphasis on liturgy.  The children are being introduced to Eucharistic Adoration this year.  Funny, when I went to Catholic grade school, we had Eucharistic Adoration and the kindergartners attended...  Then, the new Parish Council members were commissioned.  Then the old Parish Council were thanked.  Then the Vocation Chalices were sent with the new families.

Father started off his homily with a joke.  A college student was rushing around campus and ran into the campus priest.  She asked Father to pray for her at 4 pm.  Father asked why the wait?  The student said she had a chem exam at 3 and wanted to try the first hour on her own.  Father said we can do nothing of value on our own.  Genuine happiness comes from complete trust in God.  Father then redid the Beatitudes and expanded them, emphasizing trust in God.  Finally, Father mention 10 of something words in the English language.  The most revered was mother, the most tragic - death, the most redemptive - faith, the most sad - forgotten, etc.  I wish I could have heard the whole thing.

There were no bells.  The Eucharistic Prayer is unknown.  After the Sanctus, it started "Father we acknowledge" , it then talked about Jesus being conceived by the Holy Spirit, and something about the prisoner's freedom.  Another line was "Father, we celebrate the glory of his redemption"


St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton 

View From the Back Pew

Awesome window I found.

Rose Window

Website of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

Sunday, January 23, 2011

St. Matthew the Apostle

On January 23, 2011, I attended the 9:30 am Mass at St. Matthew the Apostle in North St. Louis City, in the Ville Neighborhood.  St. Matthew was originally an Irish parish, but is currently predominately African American.  St. Malachy was merged into the parish in the late 1950s.  The parish is currently run  by the Jesuits.

The church itself is classic but has been rearranged in a more modern style.  I was rather surprised to see a lack of Afro-centric Art given that the parish is predominately African American.

Everyone was very friendly and during the Sign of Peace, it was a hugging, hand-shakin' free for all.

The music was Gospel based.
Opening:  Walk in the Light
Presentation of the Gifts:  Make Us One
Communion Hymn:  The Lord is My Light
Communion Mediation:  We Are Not Ashamed
Closing:  Follower of Christ

The homily was on the longer side.  Father started out talking about his recent trip to the South and his visits to various Civil Rights history spots.  What did it take for those various groups to accomplish things?  They were united behind a vision. They had unity of vision.  Father then tied this to the second reading from St. Paul.  Christ is uniting.  We destroy the Power of the Cross when we fight with each other.  Jesus brings light to those in darkness.  How does He fulfill this?  Jesus forms a community.  You know you are a community by how you love each other.  Father then seemingly compared Dr. Martin Luther King to St. Paul.  We are called to be a light in our community, which flows from the altar.   Father finished by speaking about the need for unity in the parish.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II, but sung the Preface.  There were bells and patens!  A Hail Mary was added after the Prayers of the Faithful and the Anime Christi after Communion.

View From the Back Pew!!

Leaving the Garden of Eden
(You can see Mary in this window)

Noah and the Rainbow


Wedding at Cana

Raising the Girl from the Dead

Jesus with Children

Jesus Preaching

The Last Supper

Jesus Meets His Mother

The Risen Jesus (?) meeting Peter, John, James

Jesus Consoles the Widows


Jesuit Saints

St. Matthew

Website of St. Matthew
Pictures from Rome of the West

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Hi all!
I overslept so I had to go to a slacker Mass!  (YAY!!!!)  I attended the 5 pm Mass on January 16 at Immacolata in Richmond Heights.

Immacolata reminded me of a cross between St. Anselm and St. Mary Margaret Aaloque and is modern, built in 1967.

Music was accompanied by the piano and guitar.
Opening:  Gather Your People O Lord
Offertory:  Here I Am Lord
Communion:  Behold the Lamb
Closing:  God Has Chosen Me
Gloria:  Sing Glory to God one
Lamb of God: Agnus Dei  (Latin!)

Father started the homily off by talking about Confession.  Most people feel they don't need to go to Confession because they are not committing big sins, like murder.  However, we commit lots of little sins, sins like failing to love God and love our neighbor.  As Father was giving advice in Confession, he said Behold the Lamb of God, Who takes away the Sins of the World.  Happy are we who are called to His Supper.  Behold is is word of embracing:  God is is dwelling within me.  It gives a sense of awe and makes you pay attention.  Lamb of God comes from Isaiah.  When we are called to His supper, we are blessed.  God calls us from our sinfulness.  God recognizes us in our sinfulness, forgives us and feeds us.  Our lives are a preparation for the Eucharist.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer III and there were bells at the Consecration.  It was a nice Mass.

View from the Back Pew!

This is from the original Church, which is now the gym.

Website of Immacolata
Pictures from Rome of the West

Monday, January 17, 2011

Pictures from the Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Rice

Hi All!
I went to the Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Rice.  It was awesome!  Because I got there so late, I got to stand in the back for half the Mass.  It was still cool!

Being Questioned

Anointing with Oil

Receiving the Ring

For good pictures and texts, click here.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

St. John the Baptist - Gildehaus

To celebrate the Baptism of the Lord, I traveled out to Gildehaus to visit St. John the Baptist for the 10:30 am Mass.

This is a lovely little country church that was recently renovated.  Today's Mass was the Knights of Columbus Mass, so all of the roles (except for the priest) were filled by Knights of Columbus.  There were quite a few in attendance.  Before Mass, the Rosary was recited.

The music was accompanied by an organ.
Opening:  On Jordan's Bank
Offertory:  Come to the Water
Communion:  Behold the Lamb
Closing:  Holy God We Praise Thy Name

Mass was celebrated by a visiting priest from New Jersey who retired to Florida and goes around soliciting donations for Food For the Poor.  Father started Mass admonishing us to be more responsive and making snow jokes.  I'll spare you the snark about the over 20 minute homily to solicit donations.  Father used Eucharistic Prayer for Various Needs IV:  Jesus, the Compassion of God.  There were bells.

The parishoners seemed friendly and there were lots of large families.  The nice man sitting next to me thought I had a beautiful voice. =)

St. John the Baptist 


View From the Back Pew


St. John the Baptist baptizing Jesus

VIII:  Jesus Consoles the Holy Women

Faith, Hope and Charity
Whose Sins You Forgive, They are Forgiven

Heart of Jesus Save Us

St. John the Evangelist

St. Mark the Evangelist

St. Joseph Patron of Families

Immaculate Heart of Mary

St. Matthew the Evangelist

St. Luke the Evangelist

Hail Mary Full of Grace

Praise the Lord

Website of St. John the Baptist
Pictures from Rome of the West