I headed out to Assumption in O'Fallon. The Church was built in 2005 in a fan shape. The windows are clear with stained glass on the top. For pictures of the old Church, click here.
Mass was filled to overflowing. There is a "choir" loft, but it has pews in it and the overflow sits up there while the choir sits up front to the left of the Sanctuary. Instead of having a board with the song numbers on it, the Church projects the song numbers and titles onto the wall. The church has quiet a large technical set up with multiple computers.
The choir was accompanied by piano and I think a flute.
Opening: For YouAre My God
Offertory: The Eyes and Hands of Christ
Communion: One Bread, One Body
Closing: We Are Called
Before Mass, there was a summary of the bulletin and a chance to greet your neighbor.
Mass started off with the Gospel Question: To whom would you refer to when you say "those" people.
Father used Penitential Rite A with a spoken Gloria. Father used Eucharistic Prayer II without bells. Father did some ad-libbing of some kind before the Our Father. After Communion but before the Final Dismissal, there was this:
That's Big Al.
Apparently, Fr. Steve (That's not Fr. Steve in the pic) is getting a cat. Big Al thinks dogs are better (me too!) and that cats taste like chicken. Fr. Joe was explaining how we all have to love God's creatures and each other. God loves us all.
Father started off his homily discussing a town hall meeting exchange from the last election cycle involving an undocumented person. The temptation is to reduce people to statistics or categories. Jesus was beyond all that. Jesus meets the woman in the Gospel as a human. We have a tendency to judge people by their worth to us. We have to careful of labels. Who are those people? It depends on who you are. Who are the people we don't want to receive God's Mercy? He calls us to look beyond labels. It's ok to want to be around people you are comfortable with. It is not ok believe that the other is not a Child of God. The homily ended with a note about how good the Assumption parish is at helping the other.
Brick from the Original Church
Communion Rail from the Second Church
Cross from the Second Church
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
View from the Back Pew
The Holy Family
Website of Assumption
Pictures from Rome of the West